December 14, 2018

GameStop Puts a Hold on Game Rental Program

14 November 2017, 11:51 | Cameron Gross

For now buying games at Game Stop requires old-fashioned monetary exchange

For now buying games at Game Stop requires old-fashioned monetary exchange

Under its six-month terms, the program would allow customers to take any used game from a local store's catalogue, play it as long as they wished and exchange it for another until the subscription expired. The spokesperson specified that the roll out was being paused due to "program limitations".

GameStop's upcoming PowerPass used games subscription service hasn't even been officially launched yet, and it has already hit a pothole.

GameStop's entrance into the game-rental market comes amid the company's continued financial difficulties.

All the way back in September, GameStop announced its PowerPass program. Power Pass, as the company called it, allowed people to spend $60 for the ability to rent an unlimited amount of used games over a 6-month period. "We feel this is the right thing to do for now to ensure we are able to provide our guests an exceptional service", a GameStop spokesperson said. Speaking to Kotaku, GameStop employees claimed they were instructed to remove in-store signs and materials advertising the service. However, according to the wording in the statement that GameStop provided, it appears that at least some customers have been given early access to the service.

GameStop's game subscription service is here, aaaand it's gone. To sweeten the deal, they can bring home any pre-owned game for free for their troubles.

In a likely attempt to stem the tide of game downloads, GameStop has devoted more and more floor space in each store to physical geek culture goods like Funko Pop figurines and T-shirts. There's no timing yet for the rental program's return, but it doesn't sound like GameStop has any intention of making the temporary hold more permanent. Along similar lines, Nintendo is set to launch a Netflix-like service for classic retro games on its Switch platform in 2018.

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