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Green Man Gaming gunning for core gamers with boxed sales

"If you want to buy a toaster with your game you can go to someone else," says marketing director

Darren Cairns, marketing director at Green Man Gaming, has talked pricing and pre-owned games with GamesIndustry International, and explained why the UK digital distributor is moving into boxed products.

"If you want to buy a toaster or a Scooby Doo figurine with your game you can go to someone else," he told GamesIndustry International.

"If you want to buy your games from a company that wants to give the best game retail experience to gamers then GMG is the place to go."

The company broke the news yesterday that gamers will be able to buy not just digital PC titles but all the big console boxed products from the site.

It's gone for aggressive pricing at launch, with Sleeping Dogs on PS3 £3 cheaper than anywhere else online, and £7 cheaper than Amazon. Cairns said that's because in boxed retail, size matters.

"You will see deals like this on a regular basis. We are small enough and nimble enough to be able to do that. If you're one of the large players and you're offering that sort of discount on a triple-A title, you could get seriously damaged for doing that."

He said lower prices would make Green Man Gaming a more familiar brand, and make it a credible option for gamers. And once they're on board, they can discover the other core eatures GMG is so proud of.

"We're focused on the core gaming audience and the model that we've been running to give people credit in their account for referring a friend, give them credit for writing a review on a game, credit for trading in games, it's really giving value to gamers."

Asked if it wasn't a bit of a backwards step, moving back towards a physical product when everyone in the industry was trying to move towards digital, Cairns laughed.

"There are many people trying to go to the digital side at the expense of a market which is still really huge. I mean for us, if you look at the boxed games market in the UK last year it was a £1.4 billion market, so we feel there's ample space for someone like GMG to come in and shake things up a little bit."

He was less keen to confirm if the company would also be entering the pre-owned space for boxed titles, but said GMG did have "ambitious plans."

"You could probably tell from some of the people that we've brought on where we're headed as a company and wanting to unlock markets where we feel we can add our own special sauce and shake the market up a little. I wouldn't rule anything out."

Green Man Gaming recently appointed HMV's former games category manager Martin Baxter as head of trading, and in January added GAME's former digital manager Paul Howes to the team.

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Rachel Weber

Senior Editor

Rachel Weber has been with GamesIndustry since 2011 and specialises in news-writing and investigative journalism. She has more than five years of consumer experience, having previously worked for Future Publishing in the UK.