How much trouble is GAME in following Mass Effect 3 dispute?
OPINION: The UK’s only specialist games chain has been unable to secure a deal on stocking a key triple A title at launch – just how much trouble is GAME in following the Mass Effect 3 dispute?
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This week the news broke that GAME, the UK’s only specialist video games chain, will not stock the hugely anticipated Mass Effect 3 upon its launch in March, as well as some other EA titles.
Today, an analyst has predicted this will result in a £6-7 million loss in revenue.
GAME itself refers to the incident simply as a ‘supply issue’ which means it will not be able to fulfil orders.
However it has been widely speculated the chief cause of the dispute with EA is down to an inability for GAME to secure the extended credit terms it needed.
It could be argued the GAME’s spat with EA and the consequential lack of a triple A title at launch should be considered a singular incident, not to be blown out of proportion.
On the other hand, EA is about the biggest publisher in the world, depending on how you measure it, which alone makes the fall-out significant. Credit disputes are cancer for retail – if you can’t get the products in the store, you’re pretty much screwed.
This wasn’t lost on the shareholders – as the new broke GAME share prices dropped 15%, according to some reports.
If a similar issue occurs with another publisher, or another big title, you don’t have to be too cynical to start asking some big questions about the retailer’s future. Whichever way you slice it, the retailer currently looks more precariously balanced than it ever has.
The big question is why? For an area that makes so much money, shouldn’t Game be swimming in cash?