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Pre-Ordering: Who Cares, Anymore?

There was a time when pre-ordering was not only a nifty new invention, it was also very beneficial.

I worked at an Electronics Boutique in my youth and I was around when pre-ordering video games just got rolling. It was quite the phenomenon.

Imagine, being able to put money down on a game that wasn't here yet, but you'd be guaranteed a copy come launch day. See, there was a time when game stores didn't always receive hundreds of copies of a big game on launch day. And if the game was bound to be a bit more obscure, pre-ordering was even more critical. For instance, I remember pre-ordering Disgaea: Hour of Darkness and our store ended up getting two copies on release day. That's hardly the only example, either.

But really, does it even matter anymore? Every time they ask me what I want to pre-order at the store, I just shrug and say it isn't necessary. And it isn't. If I really want it when it comes out, I'm sure to find it somewhere, even if it's not at that particular store. Granted, it's easier to pre-order so you know where your copy is, but I also can't remember the last time I raced out on launch day to get something. Maybe those days are gone. And let's not forget that there are a lot more games available now.

Do you still pre-order? Do you pre-order as often or less often than you used to?

Tags: preorders, video game preorders, games pre order

1/21/2015 10:06:43 PM Ben Dutka

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Legacy Comment System (36 posts)


Temjin001
Wednesday, January 21, 2015 @ 11:00:06 PM
Reply

for me it usually only depends on the pre-order bonuses.
DOA5 LR gets me some extra costumes I really want.

sure I'd get them eventually anyway even if I hadn't pre-ordered but I want 'em now!

EDIT: also, more obscure releases, like more niche style games, sometimes need to be pre-ordered to get right away. I think I remember an issue with NG3: RE. I ended up just getting it digitally.

EDIT2: and now, pre-ordering digitally has a big perk of pre-loading. The game is all ready to go now on release day without having to wait for a store to open or to make a car trip and risk getting in a car wreck and dying.

..and I swear I didn't have to pay tax on Drive Club too when I did it digitally.

Last edited by Temjin001 on 1/21/2015 11:10:09 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 9:00:36 AM

GO SEAHAWKS!

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Temjin001
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 10:57:33 AM

Yep! Check this highlight reel from their incredible comeback last Sunday. I bet sad Seahawks fans who thought all was lost were in their cars on their way home already when they turned the game around.

http://www.seahawks.com/videos-photos/videos/NFC-Championship-Packers-vs-Seahawks-Highlights/683c7853-b8f0-4bbf-862e-e7f3c3648c13

Last edited by Temjin001 on 1/22/2015 10:58:51 AM

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Corvo
Wednesday, January 21, 2015 @ 11:06:07 PM
Reply

I agree. It was cool and cute in 2012 but now its just lame. I've been purposely buying games at the last second (unless its something I was really looking forward too like RE REMAKE) and don't feel like I missed anything because you don't.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 1:27:09 AM

"I agree. It was cool and cute in 2012"

Well, uh, I was thinking more like 1998 but thanks for making me feel old. ;)

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Solid Fantasy
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 2:33:07 AM

Oh 1998! What a grand year. It's no 1997 *cough FFVII, TM2 cough* but still a very memorable one. There are still some EB catalogs kicking around the toilet side book shelf in my parents house from that era.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 11:07:26 AM

Actually, '98 is widely regarded to be the greatest year in the history of gaming, with the possibly exception of '01. You should look up the titles that launched in '98......

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newchef
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 12:05:22 AM
Reply

i still pre-order most games, if only so i can remember which ones i wants and 90% of the time theres a bonus included

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Aranha
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 12:10:36 AM
Reply

Funny, I've had this discussion with a friend of mine a few times; almost a debate.

I rarely pre-ordered in the past, unless it was during a system launch (Dreamcast, PS2, DS, PSP, Gamecube). In the last few years I've pre-ordered only a handful of times and only if it was an SE or LE version of a game, and it had to feel worthwhile, like SMT:Persona1 for the PSP since it was a special limited release with the soundtrack and such.

Games seem plentiful nowadays, and the better (and more affordable versions) seem to come down the line. You wait a year and you get the GOTY edition for like $20, as opposed to paying $60 for the original barebones release. It doesn't seem worthwhile, unless it's a franchise I love and can't do without.

Meanwhile my friend pre-orders almost ANY RPG, especially if turn-based, and will fork out that $100+ for the SE or LE versions, since he claims they're niche and hard to come by.

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Jawknee
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 12:24:21 AM
Reply

I will alway preorder stuff like Zelda and Metal Gear. Most other stuff I'll only preorder if there's any worth while perks involved.

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MRSUCCESS
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 12:32:38 AM

^This. Thank you.

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deadline
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 12:27:30 AM
Reply

I used to pre-order back when they had cool, physical bonuses like t-shirts and stuff. Now I may do it if I really, really want something to show up on my doorstep on release day, or maybe if I want the collector's edition and I'm afraid it will sell out before release.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 12:27:35 AM
Reply

Pre-ordering now is about either the price or the bonus content.

I just changed my Preorder for DOA 5 Last Round, Amazon wanted $40 with no bonus content and Wal Mart wanted $30, so Wal Mart wins.

Other than that it's for convenience so I know my game is on the way. I don't actually go out to stores to buy games anymore, there's no point in such stupidness.

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MRSUCCESS
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 12:34:18 AM

Ugh Walmart. Probably one of the worst corporations ever.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 9:01:56 AM

I agree, but I'm not above stepping on the skulls of others to get a cheap price because I'm poor too.

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Temjin001
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 9:52:43 PM

World, Amazon is giving two dlc costume packs "show stopper" and "beach party" with their pre-order. Their site doesn't say it but I believe it was announced by tecmo. But hey $10 off from Walmart is a real good deal. How'd you get it for that price?
Isn't that the PS3 versions price?

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Beamboom
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 1:26:49 AM
Reply

Imo there are no reasons to pre-order anymore. The perks are usually available in a DLC for a few pennies later, and the price will soon drop well beyond the few percent you saved on pre-ordering.

Plus, you are spared the awkward moments when you realize you pre-ordered something that turned out to be shite.

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Rachet_JC_FTW
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 1:38:22 AM
Reply

yeah its not what it used to be i get that and thats the sad part its become something not quite so good i haven't pre odered anything new since before the ps4 launch at the end of 2013 so not for awhile and idk if i ever will really like you say i should be able to find it somewhere if i really want it

happy gaming

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Vivi_Gamer
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 1:50:22 AM
Reply

I have to admit it is rare that I pre-order these days. Usually only for special editions which sell out quickly. I have pre-ordered the Final Fantasy Type-o HD Collectors Edition because that actually comes with good content - mostly the artbook which isn't one of them crappy a5 ones. A decent artbook is the main incentive for me these days, most of the other content I don't care for - If they included full soundtracks instead of sample CD's I'd buy more and I'm tired of seeing these editions bumped up in price because of having toys with them.

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Ather
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 2:30:43 AM
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I'll preorder if I really want a game. Or if the preorder bonus is worth it. I usually don't preorder.

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Banky A
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 2:31:53 AM
Reply

Still will always pre-order ma' big RPGs/fighters and such with special editions.

Not pre-ordering any other stuff like the crazy amounts I did in previous years though. That price dropped down faaaast.

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Solid Fantasy
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 2:45:59 AM
Reply

Does location still play a role for anyone? I live in a town of <250 people. The closeted Walmart is 40min south. Even then there is 50/50 chance of them having the game I want in stock or at all.

Pre-ordering is an obvious solution right? The delivery man knows who I am now. And with amazon supply less of an issue I can preorder 36 hours before if need be. That's has to be a nice boon to the review industry?

On the other hand who doesn't fondly remember the pleasure in driving (or sitting in the back seat) a car to the store and forking over the physical cash for that one game you waited for so long.

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Beamboom
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 3:13:30 AM

Most order online today regardless of location? I live in a city, but I honestly can't recall the last time I went to a physical games retailer. It might be as much as a decade ago now...!


Last edited by Beamboom on 1/22/2015 3:14:19 AM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 11:08:28 AM

Yes, Beamboom, the majority of pre-orders taken at retail are still taken in the store. At GameStop, anyway.

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Beamboom
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 12:10:36 PM

Really? So in the USA the number of pre-orders sent online stores like Amazon, Steam, PSN etc is lower than the amount of pre-orders taken in physical stores?
That's... Amazing if true. Amazing.

Edit: I reread and think you may just mean that at GameStop most preorders are received at the counter. But that means very little in this context. I'd be hugely surprised if most pre-orders are placed at physical stores.

Last edited by Beamboom on 1/22/2015 12:39:08 PM

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Underdog15
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 2:28:34 PM

That'd be tough to say overall. Something like Amazon or Steam where everything is done online is clearly all... well, online. So I don't know if we can tell quickly without some investigation overall how many people do order online vs. in store.

But businesses that have online AND in-store, like gamestop/ebgames, do seem to primarily have in-store pre-orders.

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Beamboom
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 3:48:02 PM

By all means, Underdog: I do not sit on any statistics on this. I doubt anyone do.

But at least here in northern Europe, believe by *far* most games are traded online. By a very good margin. Should I do a careful estimate, I don't even think physical stores represent as much as a quarter of what's sold via online stores. And I'm pretty sure the pre-order stats reflect the overall stats.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 5:30:27 PM

I'm just referring to GameStop, yeah. I believe I remember hearing somewhere that like 80 percent of all pre-orders are taken in-store in the US.

But don't forget that's because when you walk in there, they always try to rope you into a pre-order. It's a major selling point and they never fail to mention it, and putting $5 down is usually a simple matter for most people, so it's an easy sale.

If you're a GameStop customer and you're in the store at least once a week or so, you'll invariably pre-order there. Non-GameStop customers (my brother, for instance, who hates them) almost always pre-order online, I think. Always Amazon for him.

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 1/22/2015 5:31:10 PM

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frylock25
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 4:55:43 AM
Reply

i only preorder special editions or i will set up a preorder on a game that has a good bonus.

also if i know i want the game on launch day i will preorder it so that amazon will ship it to me.

other wise i will just wait for the game to be $20 like all games are after a few months.

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Harerazer
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 6:25:21 AM
Reply

I preorder very few games. Nowadays stores have $10 or more off on release week (Target, Toys R Us, etc) so preordering has to save me money to compete. I don't care about crappy T-shirts and posters as a bonus, give me content. Also add in that Sony and Microsoft usually have Day One preorders and pre loading so that too makes it less attractive to give my money to someone a month in advance just to see the game slip back over and over (The Crew).
The only games maybe worth preordering are Nintendo games because they either release in such low quantities or ship exclusively to certain chains/outlets (Xenogears).
It's becoming where the only thing you want to preorder is consoles because there's always gonna be the A-holes who buy 20 and put them on EBay.

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slow and smart
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 6:48:44 AM
Reply

i buy al games online,and now that i have a ps4 i pre ordered some games because the price was right and i almost finished all of my ps4 games.
When i have some games to play at my ps4,then i wait till i finish my games so i get "new games" cheaper as time goes by

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bldudas1
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 7:20:03 AM
Reply

I used to pre-order a lot more, but now I only pre-order niche games, like games from NIS America, Xseed, Atlus, etc.

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shaytoon
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 8:50:02 AM
Reply

the only time i ever preorder nowadays is if the bonus stuff is worth it or really cool. like you said, back in the day preordering was just reserving your copy, which i never really did so i ended up biting the bullet and driving around town til i found a copy. cellphones werent mainstream yet so id get a list of places and call from home before leaving, some wouldnt hold the game, others would.

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Karosso
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 11:55:12 AM
Reply

It depends on the perks.
I preordered RE HD Remaster and got the PS4 copy for free, that was worth it to me.

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Underdog15
Thursday, January 22, 2015 @ 2:30:07 PM
Reply

I only pre-order if there's a limited edition or pre-order incentive I want.

For example, I pre-ordered ACIII and Kingdom Hearts 1.5. I would have pre-ordered KH 2.5, but I completely forgot all about it until after it came out. I love the book-style case for my KH1.5 as well as the steel case for AC3, and I love my collectible AC3 coin.

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injeaniousmajor
Saturday, January 24, 2015 @ 11:22:44 AM
Reply

you're just talking about "regular versions" of games though, which technically isn't necessary to preo-order unless you really want to. Pre-ordering Collector's/Limited Edition (which is a must) is another story, as well as pre-order bonuses.

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