back to article Blockbuster says Game Over on Game Station UK

Movie retail giant Blockbuster Inc has said it has sold Game Station Ltd, the UK video game arm of its business, to Game Group Plc in a $150m deal. Dallas-based Blockbuster said it hopes proceeds from the sale will help pay off outstanding debt. Blockbuster bought Game Station in October 2004, and the sale is the latest in a …

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  1. Jeremy

    Competition?

    How is this not attracting the attentions of the Competition Commission?

    As I understand it, there used to be three big-ish chains: Game, EB and Game Station. About 4 or 5 years ago, Game bought all of EBs UK stores. Now they've bought Game Station. Doesn't that mean that, aside from a small - and dying - number of independent stores, they basically have complete control of high-street games stores?

  2. Rob

    Of course not.

    Of course they don't have complete control of the high street game stores. There are many other places where you can buy video games, from Woolworths, WH Smiths, HMV, Virgin Megastores etc. Not to mention the many many independants out there.

    They're a long way from crying Monopoly at Game any time soon.

  3. Gavin Clark

    Depends on how you look at it...

    But if you only factor in High Street stores that are solely games stores then of course it is a total monopoly. If I want to purchase a game, I go to a specialised shop that I know will have the range of products available that I might require - the likes of Woolworths, Virgin, HMV, etc. just don't have that.

    IIRC Game Group Plc. is also in cahoots with Electronic Arts (hence why they insist on massive promotions of EA software), so having solely Game stores available will be a terrible thing for the UK consumer.

    I have written to the Office of Fair Trading raising this as a potential concern for the Competition Commission, and I would advise any other Reg gamers out there to do likewise...

  4. James

    riiiiight

    "Game Station is positioned for ongoing success"

    I think they mean:

    "Game Station is positioned to have most of its stores closed where they compete with one of GAME's exisiting outlets and the rest rebranded as GAME just in time for a nice juicy price-hike"

    ah well you get better prices online anyway

  5. Jeremy

    Re: Of course not.

    <what Gavin said>

    Allowing Game Group to own all dedicated high street games stores will give them too much power over the publishers in the purchasing market. It happened recently in the book trade (Waterstones take-over of Ottakar's) and this is no different.

  6. James Cleveland

    Oh my god

    I hope, hope hope gamestation don't lose their independant feel or style and get assimilated into the dull, corporate game image.

    That would be a tragedy.

  7. Albert

    Just buy online

    I think in the internet age this is less of an issue as you can just go to amazon.co.uk or play.com and buy your games online. Potentially cheaper as well.

    When the high street ruled this could have been a problem, but these days it's a minor story.

  8. Greg

    Damn you, Blockbuster!

    Gamestation are (were?) one of the last vestiges of proper game store chains on the high street. They deal in all generations of gaming, rather than just shoving next-gen systems at the consumer, and their prices are competitive. That will probably now go down the drain in favour of bigger profits for Game - who used to be decent until they became the HMV of the gaming world.

    A few years back, I was lamenting the fact that CeX has turned from a nerdy-ish PC-oriented store chain into a more gaming-oriented chain, but now I have to say I'm rather thankful that they did, because I'll still be able to buy and sell in the proper tradition of gamers.

    And I agree with those who say the Competition Commission should be involved.

  9. alphaxion

    incorrect

    the actual history is that EB bought out game but used the game brand because it was the stronger of the two even though EB were by far the bigger..

    it also meant that EB could ditch their logo and not have to pay a fee to the american EB for using their logo.

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