GameStop pulls Deus Ex PC from shelves, Square Enix apologizes

GameStop is now pulling PC copies of Deus Ex: Human Revolution to return them to Square Enix. Meanwhile, Square itself has issued a public statement on the issue.

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Following yesterday's events, GameStop is now reportedly pulling PC copies of Deus Ex: Human Revolution from shelves entirely, though the retail giant is still honoring pre-orders and selling digital copies through its Web site. This comes just as Square Enix offers a public mea culpa for failing to let GameStop know that free OnLive codes were included.

Joystiq reports that an internal memo tells stores to pull all regular PC copies for recall to the vendor. The memo also notes that unfulfilled reserves should be taken care of from the back room inventory, and that returns will be given with a receipt. The memo actually directly mentions GameStop's development of a competing streaming service with Spawn Labs as the reason for the decision. Shacknews has contacted GameStop to confirm the memo's veracity.

Meanwhile, Square Enix has offered a press release, taking responsibility for failing to let GameStop know about the OnLive coupon offer included in new copies:

As part of Deus Ex: Human Revolution's boxed offering on PC, Square Enix included a third party coupon. GameStop was not made aware of this inclusion and Square Enix respects the right of GameStop to have final say over the contents of products it sells and to adjust them where they see fit in accordance with their policies.

Square Enix invites gamers who want to purchase the PC version of Deus Ex: Human Revolution without additional coupons to buy the game at any one of over 4000 GameStop stores in North America or purchase a digital download copy online from www.gamestop.com.

An industry analyst says the GameStop's actions so far are "probably legal," and Square Enix's public apology reaffirms that. However, their aggressive tactics are certainly not doing the company any PR favors.

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From The Chatty
  • reply
    August 25, 2011 9:00 AM

    Steve Watts posted a new article, GameStop pulls Deus Ex PC from shelves, Square Enix apologizes.

    GameStop is now pulling PC copies of Deus Ex: Human Revolution to return them to Square Enix. Meanwhile, Square itself has issued a public statement on the issue.

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      August 25, 2011 9:03 AM

      There was definitely no coupon in my Augmented Edition (purchased in Canada)

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        August 25, 2011 9:10 AM

        This offer only applied in the US. OnLive is not officially available in Canada.

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      August 25, 2011 9:08 AM

      Stupid Gamestop.

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        August 25, 2011 9:10 AM

        well if you look at it the other way, they were unknowingly selling games including promotional material for their competitors. they should have just sent them all back though instead of telling their people to open up games and pull them out.

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          August 25, 2011 9:16 AM

          That's the Gamestop way though. I remember I once bought a PC game from Gamestop and opened it only to find it had no game in it. When I brought it back to them I said, "Hey, there is no game in this box" and the guy who sold it to me said, "Yeah I know" and proceeded to look back at a pile of empty boxes of the same game.

          I don't buy from Gamestop anymore.

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            August 25, 2011 11:12 AM

            Wat

            I mean seriously wtf?

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          August 25, 2011 9:17 AM

          True to a point, it's not like they have a streaming service yet so I can see how Square wouldn't have though anything of it.

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            August 25, 2011 9:20 AM

            their whole moneymaker is buying and selling used games and onlive threatens that

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      August 25, 2011 9:09 AM

      Square backed down like a bitch! They need to hire some ex Apple lawyers.

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      August 25, 2011 9:11 AM

      "GameStop Continues Not Selling PC Games"

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      August 25, 2011 9:19 AM

      eh, sounds like there was some agreement. Why else would Square-Enix be apologizing to them?

      Either way, I've found it a lot easier to stay out of that store, and this just makes it even easier.

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        August 25, 2011 9:25 AM

        Well there wasn't really an agreement; Square forgot to let GS know about the coupons. I haven't been inside a GameStop in years. :D

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          August 25, 2011 9:26 AM

          Why would Square have to inform them of what's in the box? Do they inform them if they have a coupon for an AMD product? An ad for Nvidia? Customer registration card?

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            August 25, 2011 9:31 AM

            They (Square) didn't have to, and I think it was shitty of GS to pull the coupons from sealed boxes. It's within their rights to do it (I guess), but it sure ain't good publicity. :)

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            August 25, 2011 10:07 AM

            If you're selling a product you should have the right to know what that product is. It look would bad on anyone if they sold games with bees or anthrax in them.

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              August 25, 2011 10:09 AM

              That's an absurd example.

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                August 25, 2011 11:28 AM

                Honestly GameStop does have a pretty valid reason imo. It's like a McDonalds using burgers from a third party that had a BK logo branded on the top of each burger.

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                August 26, 2011 7:02 AM

                By design. He's using an extreme to bring his point into sharp relief. Something like "I'm not walking a million miles to the store." It's understood that the store's not really a miles away.

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      August 25, 2011 9:21 AM

      goddamnit square you cowards

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      August 25, 2011 9:24 AM

      I really hope some day digital distribution kills off GameStop so we can all have a big party in celebration of the defeat of a tyrant.

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      August 25, 2011 9:30 AM

      It's like this.
      Square-Enix made a deal with OnLive. Gamestop didn't like that deal cause they want to compete in that digital market space, so they went ahead and made a BETTER deal with Square-Enix BEHIND ONLive's back.
      How much you wanna bet ONLive sues over this?
      Now they issuing apologies?
      Smells like shit to me.
      They took a jab at the smallest competitor, in this case ONLIve.
      HEY, FUCK YOU GAMESTOP!

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      August 25, 2011 9:30 AM

      Square Enix Apologises?!?!?! Such bullshit. Points to them for being classy, but Gamestop is clearly the one at fault.

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        August 25, 2011 9:40 AM

        Agreed. There is nothing wrong with a packaged game including ad's and promotions from various partners of the developer/publisher. GameStop is incredibly anti-competitive, and needs to use this kind of scumball tactics to try and succeed. The sooner that company dies, the better. Scum.

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          August 25, 2011 11:16 AM

          GS should start removing the serial numbers in all of their new Nintendo titles so that people cant redeem them and get free stuff from Nintendo that they could otherwise buy similar versions of at GS because god damnit they need those sales that theyre losing from those free fancy DS Styli!

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          August 25, 2011 7:42 PM

          Totally agreed with that. Why not let the customer decide instead of forcing their own service. If Onlive is shit then people will not purchase from them.

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      August 25, 2011 9:41 AM

      Wonder what OnLive is going to do?

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        August 25, 2011 9:42 AM

        They'll wait for Gamestop to release their equivalent to OnLive and sue them for patent infringement.

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        August 25, 2011 3:38 PM

        If they want to capitalize on this, they'll offer the free version of DX:HR to anyone who can produce their GameStop receipt. It simultaneously makes them look like white knights gives the finger to GameStop.

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      August 25, 2011 9:43 AM

      I've heard people were abusing Gamestop's return policy: buying DE:HR, registering the steam key, then returning it. So that might have something to do with it too.

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        August 25, 2011 9:44 AM

        I thought Gamestop had a no-return policy on opened PC games?

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          August 25, 2011 11:29 AM

          Well they shouldn't open them and sell them as new then. You automatically can't return it if they opened it to remove a coupon.

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        August 25, 2011 9:45 AM

        Gamestop never takes back PC games. If the steam key came with the PS3/360 versions, I could see that.

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      August 25, 2011 9:45 AM

      so the chances of anyone buying a PC game at Gamestop were already very low... and they want it to be lower? k.

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        August 25, 2011 9:55 AM

        They are doing PC gamers a favor really.

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      August 25, 2011 9:59 AM

      This is why I could never be the CEO of a company. Because if I was Square next big release I have FF15 or whatever I would ship Gamestop a lower quantity than they ordered. Then partner with Best Buy and put out a commercial.

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        August 25, 2011 10:01 AM

        Gamestop will still enjoy making money off your product when they resell it used.

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      August 25, 2011 10:06 AM

      People buy PC games from GameStop?

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        August 25, 2011 1:34 PM

        this was my first thought, I bet this is over a total of 10 boxed copies

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      August 25, 2011 10:11 AM

      gamefly should bundle with a publisher!

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      August 25, 2011 10:16 AM

      gamestop competes with publishers on their new games, ironically, through selling used copies

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      August 25, 2011 10:17 AM

      Did EA and Valve let GS know ahead of time about the Steam code in the PS3 version of Portal 2?

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      August 25, 2011 10:51 AM

      Pulling the coupon code out was bullshit, opening up the package selling it as new is slimey, but them not selling it completely is not only up to them I think Gamestop as much as it pains me to say it is in the right. You can't just sneak stuff into a product and expect the retailer to sell it. Although I find it weird for companies to apologize, Square Enix is definitely the one of the two that should.

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        August 25, 2011 10:59 AM

        How strong is Gamestop's new game sales compared to used games?

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          August 25, 2011 11:09 AM

          They only sell new games to get you to set foot in the store and see their high-margin used games.

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        August 25, 2011 11:33 AM

        Games usually get sold with some kind of partner promotion included in the box. If it were a coupon for 10% off an ATI graphics card, should nVIdia refuse to patch their drivers to make the game work with it unless Squeenix took the coupon out? Or, if I buy a board game, it usually includes a catalog of other games that the publisher makes and their website where I can buy them online direct from the publisher. I don't think any board game stores are planning to remove the catalog that the publisher includes because it promotes a competing source for buying the game.

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          August 25, 2011 1:21 PM

          Should nvidia do that? no. Do they have the right to? Yes. They don't because its not in their best interest to divide the pc community anymore than it is.

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        August 25, 2011 11:36 AM

        Well, what does the publisher/retailer agreement say?

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        August 25, 2011 12:46 PM

        What does "sneak stuff into a product" mean? Since when do publishers have to clear it with retailers when they offer coupons and tie-ins?

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          August 25, 2011 1:23 PM

          Why don't they have a right to know whats in their product and refuse it if they don't like whats in the product they are selling?

          Maybe sneak it in wasn't the best phrase but it generally seems like something you'd tell your largest retailer.

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            August 25, 2011 2:22 PM

            They have the right to know, but that doesn't mean the publisher has to explicitly permission from each of their retailers before coming to promotion agreements. That's completely absurd.

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        August 25, 2011 1:01 PM

        no, Square Enix have every right to put whatever the fuck they want in the box of their game, and Gamestop have every right to not sell the game in their stores in response.

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          August 25, 2011 1:19 PM

          This is exactly how I feel so I don't know what you are "'no'ing"

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            August 25, 2011 1:48 PM

            because neither of them are right or wrong. They're just doing business.

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              August 25, 2011 1:51 PM

              Thats really what I meant by this "Although I find it weird for companies to apologize, Square Enix is definitely the one of the two that should."

              Not that either of them should at all.

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                August 25, 2011 2:22 PM

                Here, you are claiming that your sentence means the opposite of what it actually says.

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        August 25, 2011 1:29 PM

        what the fuck are you smoking dude

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          August 25, 2011 1:47 PM

          You think a company should be forced to sell a product they don't want to sell?

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            August 25, 2011 1:53 PM

            I'm not talking about taking it off the shelves. I'm talking about opening a product and removing something.

            The only reason they are taking it off the shelves is due to the backlash this has caused.

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              August 25, 2011 1:56 PM

              Then I think we agree, as opening the product as I said is bad.

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      August 25, 2011 11:06 AM

      question, does the pc version forsale at target come with an onlive code? i heard that copies sent to gamestop were the only ones to get the code. I might try it out if I can snag a free code.

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        August 25, 2011 11:34 AM

        All the boxed copies came with the code.

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      August 25, 2011 11:38 AM

      boycott

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      August 25, 2011 11:56 AM

      It's fuckin bullshit and gamestop should be ashamed of themselves. If walmart decided to pull the hdmi cables from every flat panel tv because they want to sell walmart brand cables is that legal?

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        August 25, 2011 12:08 PM

        Didn't see this post before I posted, well said

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        August 25, 2011 1:17 PM

        I wholeheartedly agree. What they were doing was disgusting. They aren't getting any more of my money. They never really got much out my wallet in the first place but this is the kind of shit that should keep people from buying products from a store in mass numbers IMO.

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          August 25, 2011 7:45 PM

          What's even worse is that they aren't letting the consumers decide.

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      August 25, 2011 12:05 PM

      This is completely idiotic, so Wal-Mart would have the legal right to open up every box of cereal that included a toy and remove them because they were not informed prior that the toy would be included with the cereal? Now will any bonus material that is included in any product is subject to removal by retailers? DLC codes: Removed. Console Bundles with Games: Games Removed. Cracker Jack Box: Prizes Removed.

      Retailers have no right to alter product contents at their whim. Taking it off the shelf is what they should have done if they had a problem with the product not screw with the product. They sure have messed up what little reputation they still had among PC gamers.

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      August 25, 2011 12:08 PM

      if Gamestop is in the right, then why characterize their actions as "aggressive tactics"? they were responding the square enix's "aggressive tactic" of including a promo item that directly competes with Gamestop, and not telling them about it.

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      August 25, 2011 12:53 PM

      ban gaystop.. as a consumer if you buy something NEW and spend new retail prices it better damn well be factory sealed.. NO ONE should let businesses like this fuck you over, i dont even care if they took nothing out of the box, they shouldn't be opening new products and selling them as new..

    • reply
      August 25, 2011 1:23 PM

      Well that's one problem fixed (sort of).

      How about the pre-order bonus content that no one received or can activate?

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        August 25, 2011 5:48 PM

        That one they fixed too. Mine came without the pre-order code, but after I sent in a complaint I got a call from the District Manager, personally, and was able to get the code from the local store.

        This whole OnLive business is crap though. Since I'm posting from a pseudo-netbook right now I can say an OnLive copy of DX:HR would DEFINITELY be something I'm interested in.

        I really hope Square provides some kind of way to get an OnLive coupon for those of us who were janked in the wing-wong by GameStop.

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      August 25, 2011 1:49 PM

      Hahaha, pathetic whiny babies. Shows the measure of the men/women running that company that, when it comes down to it, they didn't grow up past their childhood stage.

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      August 25, 2011 2:33 PM

      EB/Gamestop sucks balls.

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      August 25, 2011 2:38 PM

      This is so insanely fucking retarded. Fuck you, GameStop. Way to bully publishers over something so trivial. Customers understandably get upset when they are sold open product as new. Regardless of the reason why.
      I can't wait for the day when all you can sell is fuckin' used games because digital distribution makes you totally irrelevant.

      And for the record, I bought my copy of Deus Ex: Augmented Edition from GameStop. If I had've known they'd be such faggots, I likely would've gone elsewhere.

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      August 25, 2011 2:42 PM

      Hmm, Gamestop is afraid of becoming irrelevant... Much the say Hollywood Video and Blockbuster did before it, I'd suggest just accepting your fate and making it easier on all of us.

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      August 25, 2011 5:23 PM

      Why is Square sucking GameStop's cock?

      GameStop has no right to modify the contents of a sellable item.

      This is utter bullshit. GameStop should be apologizing, to Square, and all gamers.

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      August 25, 2011 8:28 PM

      Gamestop continues to come across completely sleazy. They're quite welcome to choose what they will and will not sell, but opening a fucking packaged product and screwing with the contents before selling it as NEW is scum.

      Nevermind that they already open so much software and sell it as new, but this is going a step beyond.

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      August 26, 2011 6:09 AM

      Fuck you Gamestop. You wont see a cent from me any more.

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      August 26, 2011 8:25 AM

      I stopped giving my money to GameStop a long time ago. Every time something like this comes up, it further justifies my decision.

      If I were Square Enix, I would have told GameStop, "Blow us! You don't have to carry our game. There are plenty of other convenient outlets for customers to acquire the game."

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      August 26, 2011 9:49 AM

      If there was a sales agreement that said "We don't stuff our boxes with stuff that competes with your sales model", then Square is right to apologize.

      Perhaps during the next negotiation, Square could request that Gamestop not sell the same disk 5x in their lucrative flea market operation as a quid pro quo.

      Gamestop's model is a dying business approach anyway. I can understand why they would lash out at a promotion that directly attacks not just their franchise but their entire way of doing business. When the next game consoles come out, and they're 100% digital download, well, it's gonna be the death knell for Gamestop stores.

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