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GameStop expecting to shell out $2.5 billion in credit from next-gen console upgrades

GameStop storeFollowing the release of the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, customers unloading their current consoles and games could create around $2.5 billion in store credit, a Baird Equity analyst told Gamesindustry International. That figure came after a meeting between analyst  Colin Sebastian following a meeting with GameStop executives, where the future of used games was discussed. 

In the past, gamers have regularly and predictably traded in current-gen consoles to get credit toward their successors; this generation may be different though. The two new systems both lack backwards compatibility, and the jump in things like graphics isn’t as apparent as it was on the previous generation. That could lead a higher than expected number of gamers to hold on to their previous systems as they continue to work through the PS# and Xbox 360’s libraries.

There is also the question of how GameStop itself will fair in the future. If used Xbox One games really do require a hefty fee to activate, GameStop’s significant used games business stands to take a hit. That said, the used game seller’s considerable hold on the industry’s retail offerings may grant it some influce over Microsoft, as Gamesindustry pointed out.

The Xbox One reveal left several unanswered questions, including how the next-gen Microsoft console will handle used games. Contradictory statements from Microsoft and other sources since then only led to more confusion. Microsoft is expected to finally address the problem head-on at its E3 press conference on June 10. The PlayStation 4 is not expected to have any such limitations in place, though its policy could use some clarification next week as well.