As someone who plays a lot of video games this is a topic that is near and dear to my own heart. This is an issue that gamers have had for over a decade, what do with their old video games after they are done with them. At this point for most of us, the defacto solution is Gamestop. At Gamestop we can take our used games and accessories and trade them in for either store credit or actual cash. While the store credit system at Gamestop is actually pretty good, they do have a dark dirty secret.
Gamestop doesn’t want you to sell them your used games, they want you to “trade” them for store credit. How many of us have heard, “you can either get $15 in cash or $28.50 in store credit”? For most of us it’s a no brainer and everyone knows that it’s designed to discourage gamers from taking the cash option, with store credit they can almost guarantee that you will spend more money in their store which is good business but not so good for the gamer sometimes. We all know that they are going to give us let’s say $28 for a game and then an hour later sell that same game to someone else for $45. Well it’s about time us gamers get a little more value out of the deal.
When you are in a bind, old games are sometimes your most liquid asset and all of us have wished for an option that would probably gives us more value. I am happy to say that it seems as if that day has finally arrived. Several new websites like Glyde and Gamestaq have burst onto the scene with an approach that seeks to put more money in your pocket. These sites are kind of like EBay for video games, except you don’t bid. Both sites use sophisticated algorithms to place a “market value” on your games based on what you say the condition of the game is and overall demand for that title. Before I wrote about these sites I wanted to test them out. Glyde works like this:
- You create an account on Glyde.com which only takes a few minutes.
- You click on the sell tab, type in the name of the game you want to sell and select it from the choices.
- You are then asked about the condition of the game and based on that a “market value” is displayed on the right hand side of the screen telling you how much you could get for the game if it’s sold (excluding Glyde’s small fee).
- The display will tell you if your current price is at or above the market price and will allow you to adjust the price the price up or down as you see fit all the while telling you where your game stands in the buying que.
- Most times I adjust it down slightly to where it tells me that my game will be the first one sold if someone wants the title.
- When someone buys the game, you get an email and then a few days later a pre-addressed envelope arrives at your home with the buyer’s address.
- You simply put the game in the envelope, seal it and put it in the mailbox.
- A few days later if all is well the transaction is completed and then money goes into your Glyde account which you can then either you use to buy games of your own or you can have it direct deposited into your bank account for free.
For the most part I was very impressed with my Glyde experience, my games sold within 3 or 4 days (sometimes within hours) and once I requested the money be sent to my account it was there within 2 days. The prices that I got for the games I sold were very near retail value and much more than I could have gotten at Gamestop in either cash or store credit. But alas, all is not perfect. This market that Glyde and Gamestaq are pioneering is still very young and because of that there are some problems that I see. The biggest issue is the time it takes for you to receive the envelope after someone buys your game, this normally takes almost a week which is way too long if you need the cash quick. Ebay has its community of power sellers and has created an organic ratings and trust system, neither of these sites have that yet. Another issue I see is when it comes to games that come with bundles like DJ Hero 2 or Cabela’s Dangerous Hunts 2011, you can sell the game but why would anyone want it without the rest of the bundle? At this point I don’t know if either site have a mechanism to handle these types of games.
Overall though I am very excited about this industry in general and if I was Gamestop I would be concerned because sites like this that let the market set for the value for a game are likely to catch on quickly. Honestly, I think these sites and other like them are prime targets for companies who already have the whole mailing supply chain down to a science like Amazon and Netflix. With those companies supply chains behind it, the process could drop from a week to 2 or 3 days which will be much more palatable for most people. I hope that these kinds of sites will force companies like Gamestop to give more value to the customers on the games they trade in, either they do that or they risk losing them to sites like Gamestaq and Glyde.
As far as Glyde goes they won’t just let you sell video games, you can buy and sell DVDs, books and CDs as well. The site is clean, simple and easy to use. Glyde definitely gets our seal of approval. Gamestaq is a little newer and set to come out what the company says was a successful beta very soon. I would advise gamers to try both and see which one will give you the most for your game and deliver you the most consistent experience. Make sure you come back and let us know what you think.