The Rise Of 'Swap Sites' For Gamers


imageGame publishers have long complained about retailers like GameStop that sell used games, because they don’t get a cut of the resale revenues. But now the resellers themselves are facing increased competition — from a crop of new sites that help gamers find bargains, vintage games, and even let them trade games and consoles for free, according to the WSJ.

One such “swap site” is Switch Games, which lets users swap games and consoles directly. One user’s first trade was an older version Xbox for an Xbox 360 — which GameStop is retailing for about $170, refurbished; the buyer paid only shipping and handling fees. (Yes, there are people who would prefer an older-model console to a newer one, either because they’re collectors or because they’re devotees of the former.) But much of the swapping is around games rather than consoles. Founded in 2005, the site features an automated matching system called Switchbot that pairs members based on their gaming wants and needs; there are also social media features that let gamers barter informally.

Then there’s Goozex, which lets users trade games on a points system. The site ranks titles based on factors like retail price, age and popularity — but ultimately, the system offers substantial savings: one user told the WSJ that he’d saved more than $2,500 on over 30 game trades over the past year and a half.

Photo Credit: Nanoo Nanoo

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