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GameStop exec "bullish and optimistic" on economy

J Paul Raines denies that pre-owned titles affect the sales of new games

J Paul Raines, the COO of US retail chain GameStop, has told the DICE Summit in Las Vegas that he is "bullish and optimistic" about the future of the games industry in the current troubled conditions, and that the company believes that "every indicator points to continued growth in gaming."

And he also believes, reports Gamasutra, that the sales of second-hand games don't have a negative effect on the sales of new titles.

"Often, gamers borrow a game in a series, to determine if they want to buy the next game when it comes out," he said. "Do used games hurt sales of new releases? No."

"I know that at this conference, there is some discussion about pricing. I think this is a very similar discussion, the fact that customers can very inexpensively get into a new genre...and then they can go out and buy new games in those genres."

He added that while the company has enjoyed 7 per cent compound growth on new games year-on-year consistently, only 4 per cent of new release sales are used games.

Raines also reaffirmed GameStop's commitment to new games, noting the impact on revenues that collector's editions can have. Specifically he noted that four recent titles had seen a significant proportion in revenues result for special editions - Metal Gear Solid 4, Gears of War 2 and Fable II were at 21 per cent, while Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe saw 55 per cent of total revenue come from the collector's edition.

And he claimed that the company's work on promoting certain titles aggressively helped them to achieve very strong results, citing in particular that 90 per cent of the growth of Call of Duty: World at War over Call of Duty 4 was down to GameStop.

Raines ended his talk by noting that the company wants to be "the developer's friend... the developer's supporter," and while many people will be interested in his comments on second-hand games, it's an issue that will continue to be a talking point for some time.

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