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why are game rentals so expensive?

Old 12-05-07, 02:05 PM
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why are game rentals so expensive?

So i signed up for gamefly again because there are just so many games and not enough money. Sadly, my PO is no longer doing fastreturn and the turn around is terrible now. I decided to give my local blockbuster a try and to my shock and horror games rentals are 8 bucks. Is there a license issue with game rentals that drives the price so high? Also noticed they did not have 1 or 3 day rentals just 5 days. If I'm renting a game, I don't need 5 days. I usually play through them quickly or I get bored which is about the same thing. Whatever happen to 1 night rentals? You know a dollar a night?

I'm probably going to sign up for Gamepass at blockbuster. W/O fastreturn gamefly has no value to me. with a 8 day window between games (4 days for them to get it, 4 days for me to get another game) the most I can get out a month is 6 games. gamepass was 22 (same as GF) a month but I can turn around games as fast as I want.

I really should just make my own game store. *sigh* /rant

Last edited by squidget; 12-05-07 at 02:07 PM.
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Old 12-05-07, 02:38 PM
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Games are more expensive than movies, which might have something to do with it.
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Old 12-05-07, 02:38 PM
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Well, movie dvds cost less than $20 and rent for $4 (or 20% of their cost), and Video games cost $60 and rent for $8, which is 13.3% of its cost. A movie has to be rented 4-5 times to pay for itself and a next-gen game must be rented 7-8 times to pay for itself, so the pricing doesn't seem that out-of-line to me. It is a lot though (hense my stupid, reluctant decision to continue on with crappy gameznfilx),
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Old 12-05-07, 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Decker
Well, movie dvds cost less than $20 and rent for $4 (or 20% of their cost), and Video games cost $60 and rent for $8, which is 13.3% of its cost. A movie has to be rented 4-5 times to pay for itself and a next-gen game must be rented 7-8 times to pay for itself, so the pricing doesn't seem that out-of-line to me. It is a lot though (hense my stupid, reluctant decision to continue on with crappy gameznfilx),
Not to mention in both cases, games AND movies, the rental chains make back 75% of their cost anyway by selling them used. It's not like they need an $8 rental to break even. They are making hand over fist, especially at that price.

Game rental prices are way out of whack. Especially Gamefly's $15 per month for one out at a time.
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Old 12-05-07, 03:54 PM
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Quick and easy answer: They are so expensive because people will pay that amount.
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Old 12-05-07, 04:01 PM
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Renting a crappy games saves more than buying a crappy game. The expense of a rental pales in comparison to the price of a purchase.
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Old 12-05-07, 04:11 PM
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Which is why I recently joined Gamefly. Unfortunately, my first game was Super Mario Galaxy which, since I didn't like Mario 64 or Sunshine, I figured would be a quick rental/dismissal... but no, I actually really like the game and now wish I bought it since it's clogging up my other rental. (Also rented CoD4 which went back today).

Damn you Nintendo!
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Old 12-05-07, 05:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Decker
Well, movie dvds cost less than $20 and rent for $4 (or 20% of their cost), and Video games cost $60 and rent for $8, which is 13.3% of its cost. A movie has to be rented 4-5 times to pay for itself and a next-gen game must be rented 7-8 times to pay for itself, so the pricing doesn't seem that out-of-line to me. It is a lot though (hense my stupid, reluctant decision to continue on with crappy gameznfilx),

The other issue to remember is that a movie will probably generally turn around quicker than a game.


WRT using gamefly though, I know each to their own, but I've found the turn around times to be just about right on the two out game plan. I receive one, play it until the next one comes in and then ship it back. So one is always at the house, and one is always in transit. The main issue I don't really like w/ them is the fact the majority of the games I want are on some sort of wait list and trying to get a game on release week is nearly impossible/pure luck.
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Old 12-05-07, 05:06 PM
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But remember VHS tapes (rental priced) were around $60 wholesale.
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Old 12-05-07, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by jdodd
Quick and easy answer: They are so expensive because people will pay that amount.
sad but true.

i remember when i rented wrestlemania 21 for xbox at blockbuster going back a few years. it came to $8.04 for 3 days.
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Old 12-05-07, 05:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Michael Corvin
Not to mention in both cases, games AND movies, the rental chains make back 75% of their cost anyway by selling them used. It's not like they need an $8 rental to break even. They are making hand over fist, especially at that price.

Game rental prices are way out of whack. Especially Gamefly's $15 per month for one out at a time.
Do they really, though? Game prices seem to drop pretty rapidly, and I'm not sure how well the rental chains do with sales.
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Old 12-05-07, 06:18 PM
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No doubt, there's profit in rental. But don't forget the costs of space rental, tenant improvements, employee wages and benefits, advertising, franchise fees, utilities. I'm starting my own business and it's shocking how expensive everything is. It's not like you buy a movie, rent it a couple of times and you're suddenly in the black.
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Old 12-05-07, 06:49 PM
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Well, I look at it this way. For a game rental store, you have to have a good back catalog of titles for at least the current generation. You have to stock lots of copies of the latest games, guessing which ones will be more popular, so that they're readily available for the customers. You can't sell those right away (maybe after about a month or so) but those would have the highest resale value, so you have to hope you didn't get a bunch of All Pro Footballs and got stuck with them after the sudden pricedrop.

This is in addition to the rent, employees, cost of business, etc.
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Old 12-05-07, 07:02 PM
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u can always buy used game off of ebay or craigslist and then sell it back once ur done
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Old 12-05-07, 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Decker
No doubt, there's profit in rental. But don't forget the costs of space rental, tenant improvements, employee wages and benefits, advertising, franchise fees, utilities. I'm starting my own business and it's shocking how expensive everything is. It's not like you buy a movie, rent it a couple of times and you're suddenly in the black.
New games cost you and me $60. They cost Blockbuster between $25 - $40, so it only takes a few rentals to cover that cost. Of course there are the other costs of running a business that you mentioned.
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Old 12-05-07, 10:15 PM
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I would never rent a game for $8, it boggles the mind that there is any way to justify that pricing, especially with older games.

I think what Blockbuster should do is abandon all late fees, and simplify their rental prices, maybe $2 per night for new release games or movies, and $1 per night for older games or movies, keep the game or movie however long you want. This whole no late fee plan makes no sense to me at all, when I rent a game, do I keep it the 5 days, or 12 days since there is no late fee, or keep it a month since the late fee is only a couple bucks? Why would I pay $8 and return it in 5 days? Just to be a good customer?
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Old 12-05-07, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by PerryD
I would never rent a game for $8, it boggles the mind that there is any way to justify that pricing, especially with older games.

I think what Blockbuster should do is abandon all late fees, and simplify their rental prices, maybe $2 per night for new release games or movies, and $1 per night for older games or movies, keep the game or movie however long you want. This whole no late fee plan makes no sense to me at all, when I rent a game, do I keep it the 5 days, or 12 days since there is no late fee, or keep it a month since the late fee is only a couple bucks? Why would I pay $8 and return it in 5 days? Just to be a good customer?
Because you'd rather pay $8 for 4 days?
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Old 12-06-07, 06:03 AM
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BBV Canada rents games for $9.99. Of course, you can keep it for up to a month, but after 7 days past the due date, they charge you full price for the game (not giving a discount for the rental price anymore). If you bring it back within 30 days, they'll refund the amount charged, minus a restocking fee of $2 I think.

I don't mind renting games there, since I can usually finish a game for the $10 inside of a couple of weeks, but the issue is that they never have any games in stock. Plus sometimes they have a $2 off coupon for games if you are a preferred member, or whatever they call it.
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Old 12-06-07, 12:20 PM
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I guess the breakdown of the price does make sense. I just wish they would have more options on time out. Pay less, keep it for less. Maybe though most people are like me and wouldn't keep it it that long anyway.
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Old 12-06-07, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Kdogg
New games cost you and me $60. They cost Blockbuster between $25 - $40
Source?

Everything I have seen (the OXM with they "why games cost $60" article) indicates that the retailer markup on games is close to $5, indicating they pay something closer to $55 per game.
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Old 12-06-07, 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by mbs
Source?

Everything I have seen (the OXM with they "why games cost $60" article) indicates that the retailer markup on games is close to $5, indicating they pay something closer to $55 per game.
I have no sources, and no inside knowledge, but I'm guessing that Blockbuster must get some kind of a discount that other retailers don't see. We have quite a few Blockbuster employees on DVDTalk - does anyone know for sure what Blockbuster pays for new games??
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Old 12-06-07, 02:34 PM
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Just FYI, the My Coke Rewards program has Blockbuster game rental coupons available for 80 points. That equals eight 12 packs or combinations of 3 point caps. I'm not saying it is a deal unto itself, but if you drink Coke products anyway, it is a fairly high trade value for the points.
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Old 12-07-07, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Mikael79
I have no sources, and no inside knowledge, but I'm guessing that Blockbuster must get some kind of a discount that other retailers don't see. We have quite a few Blockbuster employees on DVDTalk - does anyone know for sure what Blockbuster pays for new games??
I'm no Blockbuster employee, but I'd think that BBV moves much, much less in new videogame product than Wal-mart, Target, Best Buy, Circuit City,and Gamestop, so they may get more of a discount than the mom-and-pop corner store, but not half off for full retail games.
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Old 12-07-07, 02:41 PM
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I stopped in to rent a 360 or Wii game at Hollywood and found the same pricing - $8. I ended up paying a late fee too, so it was like $16 for 10 days.

I instead signed up with Gamefly on the 1-out plan. I'm tending to rent maybe 1-2 games a month. That's fine. I'm not concerned with maximizing the number of rents. Just that I'd rather pay $16 a month, get some extra gamefly dollars and perks, than worry about returning games to the store.

I live 15 miles out of town, so if I don't remember to grab a game on the way to work, it doesn't really pay at $3/gallon to drive into town to return it.
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Old 12-20-07, 04:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Mikael79
I have no sources, and no inside knowledge, but I'm guessing that Blockbuster must get some kind of a discount that other retailers don't see. We have quite a few Blockbuster employees on DVDTalk - does anyone know for sure what Blockbuster pays for new games??
I know this threads about a week old, but I find it interesting. From what I've heard working at both Gamestop and Blockbuster, new retail games and movies cost nearly what they sell them for. That's why GS wants so badly for you to buy and sell used games; they make a lot of money for them. And in regards to the rental prices, something I didn't see mentioned was that these items not only have worse turn-around time, but are handled in much worse fashion. Mostly kids rent games, and thus games get the hell beat out of them. (It's also true of family/kids movies). Then, the game that you've tried to turn a profit on suddenly has a new cost of refurbing or buying a new one and starting the process all over again. I don't like the prices but I think it's easy to see where the cost goes.
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