Each of us can make an argument for whether we love or hate GameStop. We also can argue whether we like exclusive content or not. In the future, however, we may be arguing if we like GameStop offering exclusive in-game content.
GameStop and other retailers often work with developers or publishers to offer exclusive pre-order bonuses but GameStop’s plans may reach further after meeting with an investment group. The retailer outlined plans to R. W. Baird to consider “getting involved at the time of game development where there could be some content exclusive to [the retailer] included in the game.” This seems to indicate the desire to offer more substantial bonuses, albeit digital or physical, in the future by teaming with developers early in a game’s development.
Big titles have been offering console exclusive for some time and are becoming more prevalent. Call of Duty has been giving Xbox user’s exclusive first access to DLC for some time and Destiny is doing the same for DLC on PlayStation. GameStop’s plan differs in that its exclusives are designed to get you to buy from them, regardless of your platform of choice. Imagine that you and a friend want to play a game together but your friend bought from Amazon and you bought from GameStop. Given this possible strategy, you and your friend may not be able to play all the game’s content together.
It is too early to tell what exactly will become exclusive to the retailer but it may be likely that other retailers will pursue this business model as well. I would caution that this may cause in-game fragmentation of user bases but can see that this may already be happening as some players choose not to buy DLC for games, thus potentially limiting their interactions with other players.
Paul Novak is a self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing in the west side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet. Found here at What’s Your Tag? and on the Twitter @dudewantshisrug. Game on with Team XBRO!