Is it possible that the place that at one time would have lines around the building for new video game releases, could be our new local comic book store?
When you walk into a GameStop, there are a few things you are usually shopping for. For some it’s a place to come find the latest releases for their gaming system. For others its a place to unload those used games you just got tired of playing, and for a slim few, they still check the local GameStop for their Funko Pop! exclusives. But could GameStop be our new local Comic Book store?
Let’s face it, who really buys physical games anymore? I know I just go to my gaming console online store. I can check all the new releases, look for any pre order deals, hit “Download now“and I’m good to go! Well it seems the video gaming store is starting to realize that as well.
As our friends at Bleeding Cool reported, GameStop will start offering comic books directly in certain locations. From the leaked photos obtained from the chain store system below, you can see most of the inventory will be Marvel and DC comics, BUT there are also Oni Press titles on it as well. The person who has inspired this move is no stranger to comics and collectibles, James Parker.
Parker lead the same initiative at Hastings, making Hastings the largest direct market comic book retailer in the United States. And although this gave the company a boost, Hastings was bought out in 2013 by Draw Another Circle. In June of 2016 they had to file for bankruptcy.
James told Bleeding Cool:
“We are indeed getting into comics, as a retail test forum. Comics are often a part of our promotional entertainment industry environment, including video games – we can learn from this tribal knowledge. We have indeed partnered with Diamond to carry a small selection of comics in 40 stores utilizing their new spinner rack. The comics are mostly from Marvel and DC with a focus on key series and titles. This is just a small launch to bring comics to some of our collectibles stores as they fit with the current trend of Collectibles that are performing in the market. Should this prove successful, we may consider rolling out to additional stores in the future but plan to keep it limited to the spinner rack for the foreseeable future. Of course, you can expect to see some exclusive variants from us in the future.”
So whats all this mean?
This trial run will be in 20 of their stores, as well as part of the direct market. Well there are 7200 branches of GameStop, and 38 branches of Think Geek so potentially this could be a huge hit against the already struggling local comic book shops. That is if the program is successful. We all know that sometimes corporate can have a great idea on paper, and still see no retail market success.