In the ever-changing war for gamer’s money, Amazon Prime will now feature a pretty big incentive for video game enthusiasts that could affect brick and mortar outlets in a big way. Prime members now can receive a 20% discount on all new physical video games when pre-ordered or purchased within the first two weeks of a game’s release. That’s right, a flat 20% off all physical media for games for all consoles, handhelds, and PC.
The move most likely is meant to bring players back to the physical model for gaming as services like Steam from Valve have converted most sales to a digital means where players simply download the game directly to their local hard drives or consoles.
The offer is only valid on Amazon and the discount is apparently added at checkout. This new benefit coincides with Amazon’s already established “Release Day Delivery” service which was meant to give Amazon an edge against gamers going out to the local store to pick up a game instead of waiting for shipping at no extra cost for Prime subscribers. The new discount will also be applied automatically to all existing Prime members who currently have a game on pre-order.
20% isn’t a small amount by any means. If you figure on the average price of a new game for console is 60 bucks, that 20% discount means a new game will be around 48 bucks instead. Yeah, my eyes got pretty big too looking at the math. As a frequent shopper at Game Stop and stores like it that offer deals on used video games, 48 bucks is less than what most stores are charging for a used copy of the fresh game (usually when someone bought it and immediately returned it).
When you factor in Amazon Prime’s list of perks like the 2-day free shipping, the access to the video and music streaming content, and now this video game perk, it’s easy to see that Amazon is striking a blow against traditional retail.