Tuesday, May 08, 2012

WayGoz: The New Way to Trade Games For Free

Written by Narz; Featured in Knickerbocker Ledger.com

Rumors of a “Nuclear Option” have been circulating, emphasizing that “next gen consoles will lock the ability to play used games,” says industry analyst and managing director at Wedbush Securities Michael Pachter.  However, Pachter believes these rumors to be "so stupid as to be laughable" as this causes favoritism on competitors that will allow used games on their next generation consoles.
The attempt to lock used games from next gen consoles is influenced by the pre-used game churn, a practice in which companies like GameStop and BestBuy have adopted to let gamers trade in games for cash to buy more games. The practice requires gamers to have a preference of purchasing used games as opposed to their newer versions. The trick in this method is the games that are traded in for cash are 1/3 of the original new game value. That same game is then marked up close to its new version price. You will often find new games priced at about 5 dollars above the pre-used price, when the value of the game traded in was a mere 18 dollars. A significant amount of turnover is profited from the used-game practice.

The used video game business has successfully depreciated the focus on single-player games and pushed multiplayer focused game with inflated price titles that require downloadable content to regain lost revenues. Veteran journalist John Walker argues that “reselling a game has led to the death of variety, the loss of the AA market, and the refusal of publishers to take risks.” Although there is truth to his argument, it is impossible to say that publishes are not willing to take risks when it is impossible to guarantee those risks are going to produce the most amount of revenue. For publishers to create a high production game at a risk to have it not reap the most amount of revenue because of it possibly being subjected to the churn could send the gaming company into bankruptcy.  It is no wonder that publishers and developers want a cut of the profits from pre-used games, and therefore turn them into multiplayer games to make up for the lack of revenue.
On the defense of the consumer, they are simply seeking to take the less amount of purchasing risk because of the high price of video games. Consumer principles allow them to trade their games to reap the most gaming opportunities because today’s games are becoming less and less affordable; it has been the gaming culture for so many years for gamers to trade in games and receive means to purchase more games.  Many people are unemployed, young, on a budget or unsure of titles they may like to afford to purchase. Why do you think they trade games to begin with? So when purchasing new and used games become too expensive for the common gamer, there is a company that will surface to end all woes and battle the pre-used game churn: Waygoz.com.
Waygoz is a social media website that requires a Facebook login to access. The site is divided up into adults and younger gamers to protect them against potential predators by suggesting safe neutral meeting places, using real names to do exchanges of video games for free. The site list members within your area as well as providing a swap list to pick out which games you would like to swap for. The members each acquire reputation resembling EBay’s rating to help swappers pick from quality people. Before meeting, the swappers discuss the game’s quality and value to trade. This service allows gamers to no longer need to sell their used games at an immeasurably low price to pay-up on other games. 
For Waygoz to continue to be successful, they must be sure to avoid becoming the same middleman that they hope to conquer. The rising issue being that they execute a transaction fee for swapping, and so it is important that the current level of swapping to remain free. But without any profits how is the company going to survive? There are two strategies Waygoz can execute; a “membership” that includes a fee where members can drop their games off at a location that Waygoz owns and have the swapper pick it up at his/her earliest convenience, or Waygoz can provide the materials for the swappers to mail their games to the company and then to the designated swapper. That way the current system of swapping remains free for those willing to meet in person and for those who cannot can pay a small fee to have Waygoz do it for them. This is the perfect resolution and hopefully with this method Waygoz will be pursuing the possibility for gamers to purchase new games again.

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