Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Has Xenoblade Been Reprinted?

Early this year we wrote an article asking if Xenoblade would be reprinted because the game was selling for $95+ in used condition. In the past few days people have started speculating that it was reprinted and prices have started dropping.

On July 31st, Gamestop listed Xenoblade as 'unavailable' on their website. Today Gamestop shows the game is instock in used condition for $90.

People are reporting that Gamestop stores nationwide now have used, but pristine copies of the game in stock. There are seven Gamestop's within six miles of me that have the game instock. The two I went to came with the original case, manuals, and inserts.

Gamestop definitely has a very large quantity of the game instock now. How they got these is the question collectors want to know.

1) Is it a bunch of used inventory Gamestop had purchased from customers and is just releasing them all at the same time?

2) Is this large restocking of Xenoblade part of the original inventory that was held back by Gamestop for some reason and is now being sold as used so they can sell them for $90 instead of $50?

3) Or did Nintendo reprint the game and Gamestop is selling it as used in order to sell it for $90?

If it is a reprinting then prices for Xenoblade will probably continue to decrease because there could be many new copies available. All the Gamestop copies are opened and complete, so prices for loose and CIB versions of the game might decrease in the near future. Brand new versions will continue to sell at a premium because supply for them has not increased.

Do you think Xenoblade was reprinted or is another option more likely?


Anonymous said...

Probably not a reprint or it would have been on Nintendo's online store again. Just shady Gamestop hoarding its used copies it bought back for $45 and waited until Xenoblade reach a price of $100 used. People just need to Miiverse for Nintendo to eshop release or reprint. Never buy at Pawnstop!

Anonymous said...

I have not shopped at Gamestop in probably 5-years. I have heard various things about this huge increase in Xenoblade copies and all of them point toward Lamestops unyielding greed.

Anonymous said...

Two scenarios that are plausible:

* Gamestop held back a pallet or two of new games, banking on artificial scarcity would drive the price up. It worked, and began to gut the new stock and sell them as "USED" to (poorly) mask the fact the copies were sitting somewhere.
* During an inventory check at the warehouses, Gamestop found a missing pallet or two of Xenoblade Chronicles. Rather than sell them as new, they gut the games and sell them as used.

The first one would be outright malfeasance on Gamestop's part, the latter would be a likely ("acceptable") scenario, as inventory control is never 100% perfect and things do fall thru the cracks. But still malfeasance, abeit not as severe.

I doubt these are all trade-ins (at best, i'd guess 4-5% or less of the stock are trade-ins). Given the campaign to bring over JRPG's, I don't think a good majority of JRPG fans would be willing to sell their copies.

PBR Light said...

Gamestop now has an advertisement on their homepage specifically for Xenoblade, describing it as a vintage game. I was recently at a gamestop buying another used wii game during their buy 2 get one free sale and the clerk even mentioned to me that they just got a xenoblade in. It was disc only. With the ad on the gamestop homepage and the clerk specifically mentioning that they got a copy of xenoblade in it sounds like a corporate strategy to drum up xenoblade sales, I would guess gamestop orchestrated a hoarding of used copies or simply held some copies back. But how much more money could they really make off of this? It would be risky for gamestop to hold back copies for game on a dying console and have them waste away on the shelf. That they found some doing inventory makes the most sense to me and now they are trying to make the most money off of it as possible.

Anonymous said...

So selling it used gets them out of the MSRP situation?

JJ Hendricks said...

@anonymous - Yes, when selling used items MSRP does not apply. It doesn't apply going above the MSRP or below the MSRP. With some products, the manufacturer will not allow selling below MSRP to avoid discounting. Most will not allow selling above MSRP to avoid price gauging when items are really popular.

If it is used none of that applies.

@PBRLight - It would be risky to hold back a ton of inventory in hopes that it will increase in price, but they might have seen how fast pre-orders were selling and knew how many units Nintendo was selling them and could make a calculated decision about rarity.

If they knew they would only get 100,000 copies and pre-orders quickly sold through 80,000 of them maybe they thought it made sense to hold back on 20,000 units. (The numbers are made up here for illustrative purposes)

JackintheBox333 said...

I am fairly certain Gamestop ordered a reprint of Xenoblade, got the new copies and gutted them to sell them as used, since the used value is higher than the new value at retail. Nintendo didn't order the reprints since the Wii is a dead console to them. Gamestop took the financial risk of reprinting them, in return for giving Nintendo a cut of the money for allowing them to reprint it.

That being said, unredeemed Club Nintendo codes in the package isn't necessarily an indication that the copy was reprinted, but rather that people just did not bother with it for some bizarre reason. I've bought several clearly used games from Gamestop (that were below their typical online prices) and their Club Nintendo codes were intact. It is one really easy way to get Platinum status for Club Nintendo.

Anonymous said...

The GameStop at Universal Studios in Hollywood had a copy of the game for 90 dollars, or 81 if you were a member. I think it probably has been reprinted, since GameStop never has rare games like this.

Anonymous said...

GameStop has worked out a deal with Nintendo to have reprints of Xenoblade and other first party titles for the "Vintage" collection. It is all part of some new GameStop marketing scheme. They also have abundant supply of Metroid Prime Trilogy, Super Mario All-Stars & Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn to go along with the "Vintage" collection.

This is pretty sad considering Metroid Prime Trilogy is a Collector's Edition that is being reprinted, and Super Mario All-Stars Limited Edition now has been reprinted at least twice. Why even put out Collector's and Limited Editions?

Gamestop's prices have jumped from $69.99 to $89.99 for Xenoblade, 64.99 to 84.99, 49.99 to 64.99, 44.99 to 54.99 for MPT, Fire Emblem: RD & Mario All Stars LE respectively all in the last month. Shame on GameStop and Nintendo.

Anonymous said...

That sucks. I was hoping my copy of Super Mario ALl Stars might rise in value.

PBR Light said...

This is garbage for all the reasons stated above (some of these were allegedly limited releases, prices are jacked up over MSRP). Consumers need to boycott these games to keep Gamestop from trying this type of strategy again. If they do, prices will drop and hopefully gamestop will lose some money on the deal. Of course, once prices drop, people will scoop up the games because demand is their. They will probably do this again too if these copies sell out
I also don't agree with branding these "vintage". Xenoblade was released last year in April. Hardly what I would consider vintage. If they were selling SMB 3 carts for the nes that is a different story.

ccc said...

Prices going up is all relative, its all cyclical and will come down. It takes roughly 25 years to hit nostalgia. I had a feeling that Gamestop was hoarding the trade ins since they weren't showing up anywhere. They are angling for profits with this move. My moneys on them doing it again. --Great call J on this becoming collectible.

PBR Light said...

Not sure if it is just a sale or actual price drop but the gamestop website has lowered the prices on Metroid Prime Trilogy and Xenoblade

JJ Hendricks said...

@PBR - Good find. I bet they are reacting to the market price which has now dropped to $80. How far will prices drop before they stabilize?

PBR Light said...

I don't think the demand is great enough to compensate for the supply that was reintroduced to the market. I would anticipate a price stabilization around the original retail cost but a little lower of ~$40 for xenoblade.

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