Industry Recon: Gamestop Looking to Revive the Idea of “Unlimited Rentals” with the PowerPass Program.

Ten years ago when I worked at Blockbuster, for a monthly fee, you used to be able to rent as many games as you wanted.  The only catch was, you could only rent one at a time.  Once you brought it back, you could take out a second game.  When I heard that Gamestop was going to start doing something similar, I thought two things, people are going to find a way to say something bad about this, and that it’s actually a phenomenal idea for their company.  Starting November 19th.  The details are pretty straight forward, if you’re a power up member (there are three tiers to this membership, yes, one of them is free) you can pay $60 for six months use of this program. 

The PowerPass Program allows you to rent as many used games as you want during this six month period of time.  You can only rent one game at a time, but you can exchange it for another game at ANY time.  One of the other perks, at the end of those six months you get to choose, and keep, one used game from the store.  Yeah, you get a free game once the six months are up.  This is a great move for Gamestop as it allows them to monetize the ridiculously large amount of used games most of their stores tend to carry that may not sell.  Gamestop has posted MASSIVE gains in sales of collectibles over the last year.  However, the company hasn’t seen the same level of increase in used sales.  This gives the company more opportunity to rake in that incremental income that really adds up at the end of a year.   This is a situation that is really a win-win for everyone involved.