Where do Gamestop.com used games come from?
Gamestop has been offering some great coupons on their website lately. If you're buying used games, sometimes the deals are too good to pass up. Not only do you get your usual 10% EDGE discount just like in stores, you also get an additional 16% off with the CAG16 code. But why does Gamestop only do this online and not in-store? There is a catch.
The truth is, most gamestop.com used games are refurbished/resurfaced.
Think about it. Where does the online used merchandise come from? Customers trade directly to the stores, not to the website. So here's what I learned from a nice local GS employee who knows me from my frequent shopping and trading at Gamestop.
Whenever stores accept games that are scratched or scuffed (the ones that are hit with a 'refurb fee'), they are sent to the warehouse to actually be refurbished. What this means for games is that the disc is resurfaced (a thin coat is stripped) so it looks smoother, and it IS supposed to work better afterwards. BUT, depending on who is doing the resurfacing, they may have taken off more than necessary and rendered a somewhat playable scratched disc into a non-playable smooth disc.
How did I come about inquiring this information?
I recently took advantage of a code, DDEAL, which net me a bunch of titles at $10 off. Any $19.99 game became $9.99. $12.99 games were $2.99, etc. Stack that with EDGE, and you've got one hell of a deal. I used my massive store credit for the entire purchase of 12 games. When I received the games, I immediately checked for scratches (but did not test them in my console) and took 3 heavily scratched games to the local store to swap for better discs. Then a few days passed.
I wanted to play one of the games I just bought (CRACKDOWN) but every time I put in the disc, my 360 would display "Open Tray" instead of "Play Crackdown". Hmm, might be a fluke. So I tried another game, and... same thing. And another. Same. I was thinking something was wrong with my console. So I tested some game that I bought new. Loads fine. I tested the games I swapped at the local GS store. Works fine. Tried the games from gamestop.com. "Open Tray" it says.
I was on to something. These games look like new, very few scratches, but what's the problem. So of the 12 games I bought, 2 were new, 3 were swapped, and 6 resurfaced games wouldn't work at all. So that's 60% of the used games bought from gamestop.com were damaged, and that's not even counting the 3 I had swapped previously.
Lucky for me, the employee at the local store knows about this problem, and understood my situation, and he patiently swapped each of the discs that I brought back to the store and explained the situation.
So just a warning to my fellow CAGers. Feel free to take advantage of the online pricing deals, but be very wary about the discs and check them in your consoles ASAP, and swap them at the local Gamestop store if they won't work. And now you know...