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View Full Version : GAME - no pre-ordering in store unless you have one of our 3 Reward Cards



metalangel
16-11-2011, 05:28 PM
Mrs Meaty's younger sister gave me a 20 giftcard for GAME for my birthday last year. Now, I don't shop much in GAME. I buy online if they've inevitably gotten the exclusive for a special edition I want (Forza 4) but in-store purchases are much rarer, and usually of grotty chav-smeared pre-owned games that are killing the industry don't you know.

ANYWAY. Saints Row 3 is out. Do want, and if you 'pre-order' you also get the Professor Genki stuff: the people cannon truck thing is what I'd like especially. What a great opportunity to finally use this damned giftcard!

So I take a detour home through rush hour traffic to the GAME near my workplace, go up to the counter and ask if they have Saint's Row 3 available to pre-order.

INT: Evening. GAME, Capital Retail Park, Cardiff.

GUY: Yes we do, have you got a Reward Card?
ME: *digging in wallet* if I do it's very old.[1]
GUY: Right, well you need a Reward Card, do you want me to see if we can look it up by your postcode or name?
ME: *becoming suspicious* It's probably so many postcodes ago I doubt I'll be able to give you the correct one.
GUY: Okay, well, you need one to pre-order, they're 3 each...
ME: Hang on, I have to pay for this card in order to pre-order a game?
GUY: In store, yes.
ME: See, I have a 20 giftcard, and you can't use those online, so I thought...
GUY: I see. Do you still want it?
ME: *putting wallet away* Not enough to pay 3 extra for the privilege, no.
GUY: Okay then.
ME: Thank you.
Exunt

EXT: Evening. Outside GAME, Capital Retail Park, Cardiff. Cold, misty rain blows on our hero.

ME: In the words of the ancient Saxons, you Canute be serious!

But really, they are. You're not allowed to pre-order stuff unless you have one of their fucking cards, and their fucking cards aren't free like they used to be. My Tesco Clubcard (which I never use) didn't cost me anything. My pre-ordered Gears 3 at the Blockbuster at the end of my street didn't cost me anything. GAME really can fuck off (once I've figured out a way to spend this 20).

[1]My last GAME Reward Card, which was of the free variety they used to give you free if you didn't already have one, for free, and was the unhappier side of a decade old. It usually sat pointlessly in my wallet. It died in the line of duty due to terminal snapping-in-half in its new role as an improvised ice scraper for my car.

Nullkigan
16-11-2011, 05:32 PM
ME: In the words of the ancient Saxons, you Canute be serious!


This brought a smile to my face.

Althea
16-11-2011, 05:48 PM
Are you sure they gave them away for free? I'm pretty sure you've always had to pay for one.

As for the pre-ordering itself, seems a bit dickish I guess but when I pre-ordered anything at GAME in the past it was always with my reward card. I think it might have something to do with making sure that you get your copy plus the bonus points on the card, I dunno.

deano2099
16-11-2011, 05:56 PM
I got one for free, many moons age (updated from an old Electronics Boutique card).

Are they still asking for a pre-order deposit though? Maybe this is instead of that? Hopefully? So at least they can track people who pre-order and then never pick up the game?

Creeping Death
16-11-2011, 06:10 PM
As far as I know, you've always needed to have a card to pre-order. It's a more reliable replacement to a piece of paper.

And as of... Oh, at least 5 years ago? You've had to pay for them. That's around the time I picked mine up.

Oh and deano, I believe you still need to put down the 5 deposit for a preorder as well. The 3 is simply buying the card.

To the original poster, shouldnt you be able to use the giftcard on the game website? I don't believe you need a reward card to preorder there seeing as you already need to make an account.

Althea
16-11-2011, 06:14 PM
I never had to put down any payment for a pre-order at GAME. Maybe they're only doing it for certain games? I didn't have to for Portal 2, anyway.

And CD, nope, you can't use the gift card on their site. Or at least you couldn't, and I've not heard of that changing.

Drake Sigar
16-11-2011, 06:34 PM
So you have to pay them to take your payment of the game? Reminds me of Skyrim. I beat a dragon and the local lord tells me I can now purchase a house in his town. Gee, thanks jackhole.

And yes, all real life stories will be answered with "Reminds me of Skyrim..." until such a time when I am no longer playing Skyrim.

metalangel
16-11-2011, 06:40 PM
The thing is, I went into Blockbuster to preorder Gears of War 3.

Membership card needed, but it's free.

The guy then asked how much of deposit I wanted. I said I'd pay the whole thing now (to save time on the night) and he duly took payment, gave me a receipt and said it would help to remember to bring it but IT DIDN'T MATTER as it was now recorded against my membership that I'd paid in full.

Much better.

Nullkigan
16-11-2011, 06:54 PM
Are you sure they gave them away for free? I'm pretty sure you've always had to pay for one.


I got mine for free about 12 years ago, back when they used to stock graphics cards and almost no console games. It's registered to my folks address. They replaced it for free once about six years ago, possibly when they introduced the charge, and I registered it online two years ago. It had something like 50p in rewards.

I've never seen another store charge for loyalty cards before. It's almost as if they're targetting children who are prone to losing or breaking the things.

GraveyardJimmy
16-11-2011, 07:02 PM
Yeah the loyalty cards used to be free. The free one should still work, or at least have been upgraded in the past. If you have ever had a reward card you shouldn't have to pay 3 since you can use your postcode and name rather than physical card (unless you want to spend points in store when you need the card iirc)

Hanban
16-11-2011, 07:05 PM
Harsh! The GAME-cards in Sweden are still free. I know because I've lost several!

deano2099
16-11-2011, 07:12 PM
I've never seen another store charge for loyalty cards before.

Generally because the value they get from the customer data these cards allow them to compile vastly exceeds the cost of running the scheme. Loyalty cards aren't even about encouraging loyalty, I mean that's the pretence we're meant to buy in to (not that places like Tesco or Sainsburys even bother now) but it's not about getting you to return to their store, it's about tracking your purchasing habits.

zookeeper
17-11-2011, 12:34 AM
Oh and deano, I believe you still need to put down the 5 deposit for a preorder as well.

Wait, what? When you pre-order something, aren't you paying for it? Why would you need to put a deposit down on something you just paid for?

I hope I'm misunderstanding.

Flint
17-11-2011, 12:43 AM
Wait, what? When you pre-order something, aren't you paying for it? Why would you need to put a deposit down on something you just paid for?

I hope I'm misunderstanding.
It tends to be the custom these days that if you preorder in-store, you pay a small deposit when you make the deal and pay the rest when you come fetch your game.

fearlessgoat
17-11-2011, 06:49 PM
It really depends on that branch.
For example, my local game store will let me preorder anything without the need of a reward card. Hell they have gave me some stuff as well over the years.

note: there's a profits warning (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-15753754) for the Game group, wouldn't surprsie me if the bad shops disapeared.

For those of you to lazy to click, here is the page from bbc.

Game Group shares have plunged by more than a third after the video game retailer cut its revenue forecast.
The firm said annual like-for-like revenues would now be "no better than" a 7% fall, after previously forecasting a 3% drop at worst.
"Our guidance today reflects the extraordinary economic times in which we are operating," the firm said.
Ahead of the busy Christmas trading period, Game said sales since January were down 8.6% on last year.
In morning trade, Game's shares were down 7 pence, or 37%, at 12p.
Analysts said the company's poor performance was linked to a lack of new hardware releases this year.
"Software launches have apparently been going well, but tailing off faster than historically. With no new hardware coming through and an obviously weak consumer market, we are placing our forecasts under review." said Investec Securities analyst David Jeary.
In September, Game reported a 51.5m pre-tax loss and its share price has fallen over 70% since the start of the year.
It has seen its business eroded by competition from online-only retailers such as Steam and Amazon, with Game holding on to 19% of the online market.

Vexing Vision
17-11-2011, 07:16 PM
I got my loyalty card from GAME when I bought my first game in a Dublin store, for free (in combination with the purchase). This actually makes sense to me - I know how many pre-orders never get honoured, and you limit a lot of potential loss by pre-screening your pre-ordering customers first.

Taidan
17-11-2011, 07:21 PM
What are these "Game" stores you speak of?

Are they in any way related to the most-excellent "Future Zone" stores, where I used to buy my games when such things were still done in stores?

zookeeper
17-11-2011, 11:13 PM
It tends to be the custom these days that if you preorder in-store, you pay a small deposit when you make the deal and pay the rest when you come fetch your game.

Gotcha. Thanks. I've always assumed that you'd pay the full amount up front. This makes the whole endeavour slightly less silly, but overall still pretty silly.

metalangel
18-11-2011, 11:53 AM
I know how many pre-orders never get honoured, and you limit a lot of potential loss by pre-screening your pre-ordering customers first.

Here's my deposit.

Vexing Vision
18-11-2011, 12:08 PM
Here's my deposit.

That would certainly help, yeah. (Although it can still be charged back, etc.)

R-F
18-11-2011, 12:11 PM
See, I'm pretty much the most anti-corporate person I know and this doesn't really bother me. My main question is, if you're not a chav that doesn't understand the magic of the internet, why would you buy from Game anyway?

Althea
18-11-2011, 03:17 PM
See, I'm pretty much the most anti-corporate person I know and this doesn't really bother me. My main question is, if you're not a chav that doesn't understand the magic of the internet, why would you buy from Game anyway?
Because - last time I was there - I worked a few streets away and I could pop in and get a game if I wished. I also prefer retail releases, and I sometimes got games cheaper there or in editions I couldn't get elsewhere. I picked up Patrician IV GAME Exclusive edition for 10 earlier this year, which was further reduced to 7.50 when I redeemed some points.

metalangel
18-11-2011, 08:53 PM
See, I'm pretty much the most anti-corporate person I know and this doesn't really bother me. My main question is, if you're not a chav that doesn't understand the magic of the internet, why would you buy from Game anyway?

Because I was given a GAME giftcard that could only be used in-store.

After the Cardiff Queen Street branch tried (unsuccessfully) to find me on their database, the manager advised me to just come back tomorrow like I was collecting the game and make sure I got the preorder edition as they had lots of copies of it - and to ask for him if I had any trouble. Turns out this worked fine, though he was nowhere to be seen.

(I don't remember having to register the "old" reward cards, but that was over a decade of debauchery ago so I just might not remember)

piratebrido
19-11-2011, 11:12 AM
Aye, it happened to me a couple of years back. Can't remember the game, was trying to pre-order it as a present for someone. Wanted me to buy a card so that I could preorder. When they told me that I turned 360 degrees and walked away.

Lewie Procter
19-11-2011, 11:45 AM
Aye, it happened to me a couple of years back. Can't remember the game, was trying to pre-order it as a present for someone. Wanted me to buy a card so that I could preorder. When they told me that I turned 360 degrees and walked away.

You walked away backwards?

Dubbill
19-11-2011, 12:29 PM
Moonwalking out of a shop is the most effective way to vote with your feet.

piratebrido
19-11-2011, 10:24 PM
Moonwalking out of a shop is the most effective way to vote with your feet.

Exactly. This way you can look them in the eye as you leave.

BillButNotBen
20-11-2011, 06:04 AM
Anyone remember when we used to complain that stores tried to force us to pre-order things for no reason, when all we wanted to do was just go to the shop on release day and buy it? If i could be bothered i'd go back and find the penny arcades about it.

Now we are complaining because we can't pre-order, and shops are charging us 3 quid for the privilege?

What happened?

Lewie Procter
20-11-2011, 11:10 AM
What happened?
I stopped shopping at GAME/Gamestation ages ago, for the most part. Online retailers/Digital Distribution is generally better value and offers a far better service. I see no reason to shop for games on the highstreet these days, aside from the odd occasions where I need something quickly, or when I want to trade games in.

BillButNotBen
20-11-2011, 11:55 AM
I stopped shopping at GAME/Gamestation ages ago, for the most part. Online retailers/Digital Distribution is generally better value and offers a far better service. I see no reason to shop for games on the highstreet these days, aside from the odd occasions where I need something quickly, or when I want to trade games in.

I rather meant: when did everyone stop thinking that pre-orders were a pointless annoying scam by store managers trying to hit their targets and start wanting to pre-order?

But I agree with you on retail. It's a shame though, because I remember game/eb/MVC being a treasure trove of tempting games when I was younger. And even later they usually had cool deals and took trade ins (though by that point I mostly shopped at the little local 2nd-hand game store with the guy always playing console games).

When I popped back to this year they were all pretty terrible, but they did have some ok selections of 3 for 10/15/20 quid games i guess.

Anyway, no to pre-orders!!

Lewie Procter
20-11-2011, 12:04 PM
Well I imagine that anyone who cares enough to be mad about the preorder racket would not be shopping in those places.

BillButNotBen
20-11-2011, 02:04 PM
Cos i'm avoiding doing anything useful, I'll go with this:
http://penny-arcade.com/comic/2006/12/18
http://penny-arcade.com/comic/2007/10/31