Video Game Power Rankings #16

After couple weeks of slow news and other conversation, this week is chock-a-block full of topics. Let’s get right into it.

1. (-) Used Video Game Sales – We can take this in two chunks. The first part is the flurry of internet chatter that Tycho of Penny-Arcade set off with, among other words, the following: “I honestly can’t figure out how buying a used game was any better than piracy.”

If a blogger or random video game website had such thing, it would be branded as “link-bait.” Since I’m pretty sure Penny-Arcade is doing okay in the traffic department, we’ll take this as pretty much indicative of how he feels. It’s good to have convictions, but when you express them in an open forum like Penny-Arcade, the sides are going to be drawn and opinions are going to be given. Syp at Bio Break falls on the “used car” argument (which I mostly agree with) Gus at Joystick Division takes the, “If game makers weren’t so stingy for so long with the price of games we wouldn’t be having this discussion,” angle.

Where do you stand?

2. (-) Used Video Game Sales, Part Two – On the heels of the more philosophical discussion of whether it’s right or not comes news that Target is going to get in the used games business – “Target has started rolling out a new electronics trade-in program designed for mobile devices and video games.” Oh, and best Buy is going to revive their trade in program, as well. Things, as they say, just got interesting.

3. (-) Elemental – I’ll just point you to Tap-Repeatedly for the recap. That isn’t pretty.

4. (-) Portal 101 – Where were these classes when I was in college?

5. (1) Halo: Reach Halo: Reach and Bungie just can’t catch a break. First, the digital version of the game was pirated. Then, they (allegedly!) had game discs stolen and being sold on the streets in Puerto Rico. Again, this is just a rumor, but if it’s true, Halo: Reach is going to sell 4 copies, because everyone is already going to have played it.

6. (-) Dead State – The question is: “Can there ever be too many zombie games?” The answer is no.

7. (-) Mafia II – No links here, just a general observation that a lot of people seemed mostly disappointed by the mostly loved original game. Have you played it?

8. (-) Dead Rising 2 – A deluge is coming, and Dead Rising 2 is part of it. Joystiq has a (spoilerish) look at a few of the weapons you’ll be able to “craft” in Dead Rising 2.

9. (7) Starcraft 2 – Because it can fall off the list yet!


  1. I’m quite enjoying Mafia 2 so far. I’m actually quite curious how many of the naysayers actually played the original. So far, there isn’t anything that radically different in the new game from the old and in that regard it’s great. Most of the complaints tend to be of the ‘It’s not openworld enough.’ variety, to which I say, “NEITHER WAS THE FIRST ONE THAT YOU CLAIM TO LOVE SO MUCH!”

  2. I just have to add my two cents into the used games debate — I think publishers are collectively out of their minds! Having grown up during the 70s, there were used bookstores and record stores all throughout town. When someone was done with a piece of media they no longer wanted to own, they resold it (because it was their copy to sell, not the publisher’s to *re-sell*). It allowed the next schmuck to pick it up at a discount. Now, I admit that I am not familiar enough with how usage rights transfer or not with the ownership of game media, but I fail to see how it’s any different. Once a publisher has sold their material the first time, they’ve made their money. Matter of fact, they make money before I even buy it — the distributor or store has already bought the copy for them. Publishers certainly don’t appear to be hurting for cash, but their upper management and stockholders seem to be greedy for a profit that is beyond a reasonable expectation for the goods they are selling. Imagine a car manufacturer that demanded that every owner of a vehicle pay them instead of the person who original bought it from a dealer. Extend that line of reasoning to a television, or furniture, or anything else you would consider reselling. I think it’s the better side of *whack* that publishers can demand to charge for the number of people experiencing a singular product on disc and not the disc itself. Now, I am no fan of GameStop (I’ve never bought a game there), but I do buy almost all my games “used” from GameFly. I have yet to hear a sound argument that what they are doing is a bad thing. SO WHAT if every time they resell a game the publisher doesn’t profit from it. They don’t have the right too. How they’ve convinced people to think so is beyond me. The day I agree with someone getting multiple bites at the same apple is the day I put down my game pad.

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