GAME UK – Rise from your grave!

It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are skint.

GAME’s demise took many agonising months to come to a close. Towards the end it was the corporate equivalent of a duvet of ragged skin and pummelled meat tied to a scaffold of shattered bones, whimpering and screaming as it crawled in towards the yawning chasm of blissful, merciful commercial oblivion. A drawn-out, messy demise for a retail behemoth once able to dictate terms to the likes of EA and THQ. Now the beast has re-emerged thanks to the dark arts of private investment firm OpCapita, owners of Comet, who’ve resurrected the UK arm of the shambling mess and turned it over to London-based Baker Acquisitions Ltd.

Baker are now in charge of the company’s UK operations and are providing enough capital to carry on with business as usual, securing the jobs of the almost 3,200 GAME employees remaining and ensuring the 333 UK stores left won’t be closing any time soon. A convenient side effect of this is Baker have no legal responsibility to those poor sods who lost their jobs during administrators PriceWaterhouse Cooper’s recent cull, including ex-employees of GAME’s Ireland stores still fighting for their redundancy. Ain’t business just great, eh? GAME also remains suspended on the stock exchange so investors will only get their money back if the company can find buyers for its international businesses.

Since this news came out people have been falling over themselves to paint OpCapita as the anointed saints of British retail and the rebirth of GAME as a biblical event akin to the resurrection of Christ. Of course this is great news for the remaining staff but let’s not lionise the GAME-that-was, which ultimately failed as a business because it became uncompetitive and complacent in its de-facto monopoly of games retail in this country. A monopoly it acquired by outright crushing nearly every independent games store that dared stand against them and buying out the ones it couldn’t. If we’d had a choice of dedicated high street games retailers instead of “GAME or another chain wholly-owned by GAME” we needn’t have worried too much about GAME disappearing down the toilet in the first place. Other stores would have been around to plug the gap in the market.

Everyone harping on about how British games retail has been “saved” and everything’s going to be hunky-fucking-dory seem to have conveniently forgotten all this. I’m glad no more GAME staff will be losing their jobs and a convenient gateway to gaming hasn’t completely disappeared from UK high streets, but let’s keep in mind how GAME ended up in this mess in the first place. If nothing changes in their business strategy the whole ghastly rigmarole will repeat itself and I’ll be writing articles about them on my bloody deathbed.

Source: MCV UK

Matt McDermott

About Matt McDermott

Matt is the irresponsible degenerate behind bitscreed.com.