What Happens to Those Used Games Anyway?

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What happens to those used games that you trade in at GameStop for cash and credit? The Texas-based company is the largest video game retailer in the world with a bulk of their business coming from second-hand products. IGN has a piece on the inner workings of the used game retailer:

“Around 80 percent of games traded in stores are resold in the same store. But 20 percent are sent to this Texas facility for refurbishment, usually because they are looking somewhat tattered,” writes IGN’s Colin Campbell. “For personal information security reasons, 100 percent of all consoles, cell-phones and other devices come to be cleaned up and sent back out. Some 17 million games and one million hardware units pass through this plant every year.”

While GameStop has been made into a villain by many in the industry, the company argues that their used game trade-ins fuel the sale of new games. “70 percent of income consumers make from trading games goes straight back into buying brand new games,” IGN notes. This is definitely not something cited by GameStop’s detractors who try to deflect poor financial results from their own bad decision-making.