I went to HMV today. I don’t usually make unorthodox trips into Glasgow to visit an entertainment store, but if there’s one thing I’ll travel for, it’s cheap games that I’ll never have time to actually play. So I got on the train and then walked a bit to get to HMV.
This wasn’t the first thing I did today. I wish it had been, as then I’d have been able to pick up some real deals, ones which made 70% off seem like far too much value. But I was in class first thing, then had a presentation later in the morning (nailed it) and had to get lunch before jumping on the train. After 1PM, I got to Glasgow, and headed to HMV, ready to pick up some cheap games from the limited stock left.
When I arrived, it was an odd situation. People were browsing the games section alone, and in silence, avoiding eye contact with one another. It was downstairs, so it felt as though we were in the back section of a video store in the 90s. I’ve only just turned 21, so that’s something that I have no experience with other than what exaggerated sections of sitcoms have shown and jokes my Dad may or may not have intended for me to hear when I was younger. But now I knew exactly how it felt before the internet was so rife with filth.
But, hey, there were games! Lots of them. Although, all of them appeared to be either ’11 and ’12 editions of Sports Game, Xbox 360 and Wii U versions of Game Which I Already Owned On PS3, Past PS Plus Offerings, and approximately 1500 copies of TV Superstars, which has probably been traded in more times than it has been sold. There were no PS4 or Xbox One games left, and that’s what I had really came for.
There were pre-owned consoles, though. I have every console under the sun except the Xbox One. I have three PS3s in my flat, so another one seemed pointless, even for the low sum of £44. I nearly bought an Xbox 360 because it was the newer model, and I came extremely close to getting another Vita for £45. I have no idea why, I didn’t want to sell them, I just wanted a bargain.
So, HMV wasn’t the post-apocalyptic, fight-for-your-right to purchase a game on your chosen system at a discounted price mayhem which I had expected. People were literally driven mad with the lack of good titles. I even saw someone buy a full price Wii U in his silent despair.
I soon left that store, and travelled up through Glasgow to HMV 2. Yes, we have two here – while everywhere else is bereft of His Master’s Voice, we get two, and they’re within walking distance. They’re not as common as Greggs, of which there are sixteen on one street in the city, but it was a second chance. Maybe they had PS4 games?
No. I was being silly. I’d still go and have a look, but it was around 2PM and all the bargains had likely been snapped up by people much closer to the stores and with less things to do on a Monday morning than I, there was no chance.
Let me set the scene for you here: HMV 2, in the centre of busy Glasgow, has three floors. On the first floor is all of the promoted items, along with electronics, clothing and overpriced headphones. As you head up to the second floor on some lazy stairs, you’ll find Blu-rays, DVDs and anything else you can watch using your eyeballs.
And then, on the third floor, once you’re past the CDs you’ll find the prize: a wonderful gaming haven, stocked full of video games, posters and with even a place to play games with your friends for a low price.
I reached the third floor in HMV 2 expecting nothing, and that’s just about all I got. I know, you thought I was leading up to something about how their systems messed up and I got Titanfall and inFamous: Second Son for a fiver, but all they had was another fifty thousand copies of TV Superstars and more games which I already owned in one form or another.
There weren’t any consoles, either, and the “next generation” pre-owned section was empty. I have no idea what they’ll do with all that extra shelf space – how many more copies of the same game at a higher price than anywhere else can you fit there, really?
As I headed downstairs, I looked at the Blu-rays. Still fresh on the buzz of Gravity in 3D, I checked the price of Pacific Rim. They hadn’t stickered it, but I did buy another Blu-ray. Not a game, though, just a good Tarantino flick for £6.99.
I went to HMV and all I got was Django Unchained.