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Why Gamers Like Buying Games New instead of Used

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Used game sales are certainly profitable, at a time when new game sales are on the decline. Blame the economic downturn, global warming or evil cats hell bent on enslaving humanity, but there’s certainly an increase in frugality amongst gamers.

Despite the fact that (barring EA and THQ sports games) pre-owned games are the same as new ones, only cheaper, many gamers still prefer buying new. Why is that? Analyst group Cowen and Company sought to find out, so they ran a survey – asking people why they bought games new instead of second hand.

Of the 1300 (of which 1001 were gamers) people polled, an unsurprising 54% stated that they just wanted the game new; untainted ,complete with packaging, sans fingerprints or potential scratches. As many of you are gamers, you’re acquainted with the delight of unwrapping a brand new game and huffing its “brand-new” smell.

49 percent cited timeliness as their purchasing factor. They’re the impatient sort who want the game on release date, not later when people start trading in. 26 percent chose "I want access to bonus content,” with 20 percent buying new for the collectors or limited editions. Unfortunately for developers only 16 percent said they bought new because "I want to support the economics of the game industry’.

"If they plan on playing it for a long time" was the reason 70 percent of respondents said they’d buy new – which explains why multiplayer-centric games regularly make the best seller lists. "We suspect there is a behavioral psychology factor at work, where gamers have an easier time justifying the higher price of a new game if they expect to get more use/value out of it, even though the utility of new vs. used on that basis isn’t any different," says Creutz.

So those of you who buy games new instead of picking them up later for cheaper…why do YOU do it? Me? I’m a video game addict. I have a horrible habit of buying games new unwrapping them..and then letting them join the other games on my ever-expanding pile of shame; the myriad of games I’ve yet to complete.

Source : Gamasutra

Last Updated: November 26, 2010


  1. Mitas

    November 26, 2010 at 14:25

    well i guess , i buy new cuz , iwana support the studio and well , i want it untainted


  2. Rygers

    November 26, 2010 at 15:22

    I’m a pikey second hand buyer. My days as a hard-core gamer are sadly behind me but I enjoy a dabble every now and again. Paying R600 bucks for a game I’ll maybe get around to playing once or twice a week can’t be justified. I’ll wait it out and buy it 2nd hands thanks, scratches and all.


  3. GooseZA

    November 26, 2010 at 15:53

    If it’s a big MP title like COD or Gears that will give me months of gameplay I’ll buy new. If it’s a SP game or a MP game where I’ve missed the MP boat I’ll pick it up 2nd hand if i can. I just can’t afford R600-R700 a game.


  4. Kat

    November 27, 2010 at 01:38

    I like them on release day. I can’t just sit around and wait a week or 2 to play a game I really want to play. Or risk getting a lemon and having to fight with taking it back. Gamestop only knocks off like $4 for used anyway. If it was like $10-$15 off used, I might buy used more. But for so little, its just worth it to buy new.


  5. lordkhaan

    November 29, 2010 at 07:29

    Buy PC, its cheaper new than second hand console games 😀


  6. al360

    November 29, 2010 at 10:37

    second hand for me but when it comes to legend titles like gt5 god of war gears of war mw2 fifa then new is the only way to go
    but i even went second hand on black ops i knew there would be people that bought it cause of the hype and regreted it so i nicely bagged myself a copy 2 days lata for R200 less what a bargain patience is a virtu :biggrin: :angel:


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