A couple days ago, a wrote an
angry tangent article about Gamestop's rather curious policy with Deus Ex: Human Revolution. For those who haven't heard, the company generated some controversy over the fact that Square Enix, without Gamestop's knowledge (according to the company), included a coupon for a free OnLive version of Human Revolution in the box. Angry that Square Enix's promotion was benefiting a competitor, Gamestop opened removed the offending coupon, re-sealed each box, and sold the units as "new" -- at full price.
As damage control, Gamestop employees received the following email, with a rather juicy offer for those consumers that felt ripped off by the company's actions:
Dear GameStop customer,
Earlier this week, GameStop removed a competitor's coupon from standard edition PC versions of Deus Ex: Human Revolution, a recent release by Square Enix. We were not aware that the product box would contain this competitor's offer. We regret the events surrounding this title release and that our customers were put in the middle of this issue between GameStop and Square Enix, the publisher of this game. And for this, we are truly sorry.
For your inconvenience, we would like to offer you a free $50 GameStop gift card and a Buy 2 Get 1 Free pre-owned purchase. We want to earn back your trust and confidence in the GameStop experience. Please bring in this email and your store receipt or order confirmation from GameStop.com and present it to a Game Advisor.
Despite the unpleasantness surrounding Gamestop's actions - I still maintain that it was a dumb and petty move - I'll give them a good deal of kudos for making up in an altogether satisfying way. Commenter "Seraph" noted in my previous article that few people were probably enticed to buy the game on account of the OnLive promotion; while the principle of the thing still stands - consumers should have a right to buy a manufacturer's product, not just the parts of it that the retailer believes they should have - it goes without saying that a $50 gift card is much appealing than a streaming copy of Human Revolution.
So for all the flak that Gamestop gets, particularly from snarky writers
such as myself in some corners of the web, I'll give credit where credit is due. I tip my hat to no man, but I'd be willing to give a pat on the head, a gentle scratch behind the ears, and a not-at-all condescending "That's a good Gamestop... Yes, who's a good Gamestop?" Behind the veil of sarcasm and snark, there is the faintest flicker of what my fellow humans call "sincerity."