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XBox (Games)

Halo 2 Retail Date Broken in Midwest 394

Thanks to c0nrad, who alerted us to a Gamespot article stating that Halo 2's launch date has been broken by a Midwestern store. From the article: "Several reports on the Gaming Age forums--which included photos of the limited edition of the game--said that several individual Meijer stores, a self-described grocery and general merchandise retailer that operates in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Kentucky, were selling the game early. However, calls made by GameSpot to several Meijer outlets made it sound like the franchise was sticking to the deadline." The reader continues: "Despite that, Ebay auctions have already gone up, with one having already reached $265!"
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Halo 2 Retail Date Broken in Midwest

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  • $265? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BlueCodeWarrior ( 638065 ) <steevk@gmail.com> on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:47PM (#10735647) Homepage
    Why would anyone pay $265 for Halo 2? 1. It's on the Internet if you want it now. 2. If you're that much of a Halo fanatic, you've got Halo 2 preordered. Which means you're garunteed a copy in 4 days at 1/5th of that price. Is there something I'm missing here?
    • Re:$265? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by retrev ( 367302 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:50PM (#10735694) Homepage
      Collectors might want this "special" copy. There are people with too much money and too little sense.
      • Re:$265? (Score:2, Insightful)

        by grub ( 11606 )

        Not sure what a pre-sell copy would command on the open market. I mean, they can't go to eBay and say "This was sold 4 days early! Trust me!" If they wanted it that bad, grab it on P2P and buy it when it comes out. I've had it for a while, not bad but I stopped after maybe an hour and it hasn't touched my xbox since.

        I think that's why the companies are so strict on release dates: poor reviews based on early releases could kill the hype
    • Re:$265? (Score:5, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:52PM (#10735712)
      Your missing 2 things
      1. The copy that is available on the internet cannot play online.
      2. People are morons.

      Hope that helps
      • Re:$265? (Score:5, Funny)

        by UnrefinedLayman ( 185512 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:11PM (#10735929)
        1. The copy that is available on the internet cannot play online.

        Gee, I sure wish *I* could be one of the three other people that's able to play online.
        • Re:$265? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by HiredMan ( 5546 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:26PM (#10736076) Journal
          Not to mention that XBox live will probably ban you and send people to your house and shave your dog for trying to play a game on-line that hasn't been released yet.

          And you'd deserve it for logging into a Microsoft server running a Microsoft program that isn't (supposed to be) available yet to advertise that you have it.
          w00+! 1m l33+!

          That's like clicking "Yes - Check to see if my software is legal" on the M$ site when you're running a pirated copy.

      • Playing online must be really fun with those two other douschebags that paid over 200 for a videogame that costs 50.
      • Re:$265? (Score:3, Informative)

        by MightyPez ( 734706 )
        1. The copy that is available on the internet cannot play online.

        Assuming you use XBox Live! to play your XBox games online. And not services like....say...... XLink Kai or XBox Connect.
    • Re:$265? (Score:3, Funny)

      by Arcturax ( 454188 )
      No you aren't missing anything, but whoever is paying $265 is certainly missing something.
      • Re:$265? (Score:3, Funny)

        by sglane81 ( 230749 )
        No you aren't missing anything, but whoever is paying $265 is certainly missing something.

        Well, I wouldn't exactly say I've been *missing* it, Bob.
    • Re:$265? (Score:5, Funny)

      by lukewarmfusion ( 726141 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:53PM (#10735727) Homepage Journal
      Obviously there's a benefit to buying a copy on Ebay (auction closing in another seven days, plus 7-10 days for transaction and delivery). I mean, why wait four whole days when you could wait two weeks?
      • Ebay auctions don't have to last 7 days. They can be three days - or even one. In fact there's a Halo 2 auction ending in 12 minutes that's a 1 day listing. Parcels can be delivered within a day - so if a person placed a winning bid now they could have it by this time tomorrow.
    • People are stupid (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Aash ( 130966 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:54PM (#10735736) Homepage
      Yeah, there is something you're missing: the fact that most people are idiots. Remember when the PS2 came out, and was sold out everywhere? And it was selling for triple or quadruple what it was worth on eBay? And this was despite the fact that the PS2 didn't have a single decent launch game. Some people just have to have the latest thing now now NOW, even when it flies in the face of logic.

      So yeah, I'm not surprised that people are paying ridiculous amounts just to have it a few days early. People can be really stupid sometimes.
      • Re:People are stupid (Score:5, Informative)

        by DaHat ( 247651 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:06PM (#10735887) Homepage
        selling for triple or quadruple what it was worth on eBay

        I take it you've never taken a basic economics course. If a foo sells for price x in the store and plenty of people buy it, it is worth it. However should the same foo be sold on eBay for more than x, say 10*x and someone is willing to pay that much... is the foo worth x or 10*x? the answer... is 10*x. Why? Because if someone is willing to pay a price, it is worth it to them.

        Even today, PS2's and Xboxes cost a given amount which is far lower than in pass, however they are still not worth that amount to me, so, I do not buy them.

        Ultimately, worth has nothing to do with what price a retailer puts on a product, it is what both parties are willing to buy for and sell for.
      • by dcocos ( 128532 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:11PM (#10735920)
        Yeah, there is something you're missing: the fact that most people are idiots

        Yes and by most you mean 59,459,765 (in the US at least)
      • by Mordaximus ( 566304 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:27PM (#10736088)
        And this was despite the fact that the PS2 didn't have a single decent launch game.

        You mean besides SSX, Madden and Time Splitters? It didn't have many launch titles, but most were good. We're talking about, at the time, a next generation console with a few decent launch titles, that blows away previous consoles, that you can play PS1 games on AND use as a DVD player with optical out. That at the time would cost as much as an old console + a DVD player. Why on earth would anyone want that in time for Christmas?

    • Re:$265? (Score:3, Funny)

      by zoobaby ( 583075 )
      Kind of funny, because even with overnight shipping, they might not get the game until Monday. To garuntee a Saturday delivery, I bet that will add even more cost, close to $50 or more just for shipping.

      Can't wait to hear about Halo2 buyers remorse!
      • Re:$265? (Score:2, Informative)

        by ZB Mowrey ( 756269 )
        Only if you're getting butt-raped on shipping charges. Which, by the way, most places really do. More often than not, Shipping & Handling means $10 shipping and $10 profit.

        Shipping is part of my job, so I'm pretty current on rates, and can double-check the stores that send me goods. In all seriousness, the H in S&H is all-too-often 50% or more of the actual cost to ship.

    • No one is paying 265 for Halo2, after reading your post and realizing that it made a lot of sence I decided to look to see if anyone bid on it, the problem is there is no auction for just Halo 2 all the one's in the 150+ range are bundles of Halo 2 and Xbox. I think the story submitter was just embellishing a bit.

      As always I could be wrong
  • dont kid yourself (Score:5, Interesting)

    by spacerodent ( 790183 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:48PM (#10735655)
    most these ebay "sales" wont ever pay up. They bid on several of the games and then will pay for the lowest one they won, if at all. A lot of the people bidding are deliberatly waisting the sellers time "to make it fair" so no one gets the game early. Yes I know it's a jackass thing to do but thats what at least one guy said he was doing.
  • Um, who cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by EvilMagnus ( 32878 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:48PM (#10735659)
    The game has already gone gold. MS and Bungie will still get money from the sales. Some rubes on eBay will be out some more $$$ just for bragging rights. All that will happen is that some PR prick will feel as though their spectacular launch day has been violated.

    But tomorrow, the sun will still rise and Halo 2 will remain just a game.

    The bees, on the other hand... the bees will soon control the world.
    • who honor the release date so they can all start selling the product on the same day and have a fair marketplace to compete in.
  • I am guessing that Meijer stores will no longer be selling x-box related materials.
    • by blueZhift ( 652272 )
      Well actually, Meijer is a fairly big chain in these parts, so they'll probably just get a slap on the wrist, if that. This assumes that this wasn't some prearranged test marketing scheme.
    • LAUGH! (Score:5, Informative)

      by ackthpt ( 218170 ) * on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:14PM (#10735963) Homepage Journal
      No x-box for you -- I am guessing that Meijer stores will no longer be selling x-box related materials.

      Meijer, for those unfamiliar is a BIG BOX store chain which probably moves a significant portion of video games.

      The chain started, ages ago in the Holland/Grand Rapids area as Meijer Thrifty Acres, with a dutchboy in wooden shoes and pageboy haircut nicknamed Thrifty, as the mascot. It's like pairing Safeway and Target stores, food and general merchandise.

      When they built one of these in my former home town of Midland, MI, it nearly killed all the other grocery stores in the city.

      Don't kid yourself that Meijer would suffer some injuction. They're simply so big the left hand and right hand don't quite reach each other.

  • Off to eBay (Score:5, Funny)

    by JUSTONEMORELATTE ( 584508 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:48PM (#10735671) Homepage
    /me creating a new auction for Halo ][ on eBay.

    (please note that the auction ends on November 10)

  • Ebay? (Score:5, Funny)

    by sdo1 ( 213835 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:49PM (#10735673) Journal
    Ebay auctions have already gone up, with one having already reached $265!

    Repeat after me. "It's just a game".



  • Pirates (Score:4, Interesting)

    by alaeth ( 78655 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:49PM (#10735684) Homepage
    wow, some people really can't wait. 260 bucks for a couple days early release? Probably not when you factor in shipping time/auction closure/ et all.
    • same thing i was thinking...how many of these people buying it on ebay are actually gonna have it in their hands before the release date?
  • ebay clicky (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
  • Halo Outlaws (Score:5, Interesting)

    by slumpy ( 304072 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:51PM (#10735704) Homepage
    At the EBgames I work at we have around 10 or so big boxes with Halo 2 and the strategy guides.....so it's no surprise people are selling it early. It's tempting as hell to take one home.

    Each of the shrink-wrapped game cases has a sticker....under the shrink-wrap, that says "DO NOT SELL UNTIL 11/9/04." I've never seen a game this hyped or this heavily protected. Hope you all pre-ordered.
    • Sounds like standard "Street Date" shipping to me. Used to work retail electronics. Wasn't uncommon to have half a dozen boxes with "DO NOT SELL UNTIL $Date" on the shelf. (Hell, I had "Finding Nemo" DVD's sitting on the stockroom shelf while the movie was just hitting the second run theater.)

      But good to know that there's not going to be a shortage. This game is almost as heavily anticipated as Doom 3 or even Half Life 2.

      Who am I joking. There will be a shortage.
    • Re:Halo Outlaws (Score:5, Insightful)

      by ivan256 ( 17499 ) * on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:25PM (#10736060)
      Hope you all pre-ordered.

      Why, because you're going to keep the extra copies under lock and key until 11/10 to "teach people a lesson" about preordering?

      The EBGames in my local mall had "zero" copies of GTA San Andreas at 9:00 PM on release day if you hadn't pre-oredered, but dozens the next morning. Luckily Wal-Mart doesn't pull such stupid crap, and I was able to get one of their 100+ copies the day the game came out. You really expect me to believe that with how many copies they're hoping to sell of this game that they aren't shipping enough to retailers? Halo 2 won't be sold out. It's the games that *aren't* expected to sell well that you need to pre-order.
      • no, I think preordering is overrated as well...I'm not on some pre-order high horse.....I just want to make sure everyone who wants one gets one
    • by period3 ( 94751 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:27PM (#10736082)
      Each of the shrink-wrapped game cases has a sticker....under the shrink-wrap, that says "DO NOT SELL UNTIL 11/9/04." I've never seen a game this hyped or this heavily protected.

      Yeah, those stickers are deadly guardians. I tried peeling one off once, and I cut myself pretty bad. Almost bled to death.

  • Oh my! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:52PM (#10735716)
    Halo 2 has been spotted! I'm peeing my panties! This is almost as good as the Cabbage Patch kids hype.
  • by AtariAmarok ( 451306 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:53PM (#10735732)
    Why not let stores sell it when they have it? It kind of makes software industry whines about piracy losses ring hollow when the product is sitting there in the stores and the software company is prohibiting stores from selling it. There is also the message of "want to buy it? Forget about it: we're sitting on the boxes for now. You'll have to scan Kazaa for a cracked copy."
    • Ain't marketing grand?
    • Why not let stores sell it when they have it?
      My guess is that its so the game has a chance to be distributed to all retailers before they're allowed to start selling. It would be an unfair advantage to allow Meijer's to start selling if they had, say, received it a week before everyone else.
    • by Kaboom13 ( 235759 ) <kaboom108@NOsPam.bellsouth.net> on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:12PM (#10735940)
      They make an agreement with the stores to ship the game early, but they cannot sell it until release date. This way all the stores across the country can start selling it on the same day. If you don't agree, they don't ship to you until just before the release date, so you dont get it until on or after the release date. This way ensures a nationwide simultaneous release, which maximizes release-date hype and the effect of release date advertizing. Stores like it because there is plenty of time to fix shipping problems without missing out on all the release date sales and pissing off their pre-order customers. It also stops the first shop to get it from hiking up the price and taking advantage of the situation. Stores voluntarily enter into these agreements as they benefit everyone, although some stores break them from time to time (either intentionally or by mistake).
    • Your argument makes sense as a rant, but it completely ignores the reasoning behind release dates. The stores can't sell it early because it doesn't go on SALE until the 9th. Everyone knows it comes out on the 9th. I met a 50 year old guy the other day that couldn't stop talking about how he couldn't wait until Nov. 9th so he could get his copy of Halo 2. This is a huge date, and there are huge parties and huge programs and lots of hype and lots of expectations. Many of the EBGames will be hosting hal
      • "The stores can't sell it early because it doesn't go on SALE until the 9th"

        So you have a product sitting there, easily sold, but they can't sell it.

        "Having games in the back offices early doesn't "encourage" piracy"

        It certainly does, just like the "DVD Region" system does. It does provide an incentive for piracy ("illicit appropriation") if the product is available, but for some arbitrary reason (or region) you can't buy it.

  • by lpangelrob2 ( 721920 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @01:53PM (#10735733) Journal

    Meijer, for those who don't know (and since they're a regional store, I suppose there would be many that don't), is the name of a chain of stores that are individually frickin' huge. They're compete directly with Wal-Mart and Target. So if Microsoft/Bungie decides to stop giving Meijer their software/hardware to sell, I think Meijer would just say 'boo-hoo'... they've still got hundreds of aisles of clothing, food, other companies' software, and housewares to make a profit from.

    Will it come to a lawsuit? Maybe. Would it be worth Microsoft's time? Probably not, but that is a question left up for debate.

    • "Will it come to a lawsuit? Maybe. Would it be worth Microsoft's time?"

      Yeah, it would be great to see someone sued for selling a legal properly-licensed product.

      • Microsoft probably has a deal with the suppliers that they will not sell copies for release before the release date. In cases where they are the direct supplier (like to Wal-mart) the deal will be between Microsoft and the retailer. Shit rolls downhill. Someone is probably getting sued.
        • If that's true, Microsoft would still have to figure out if it's worth it to sue. with a company like Meijer who probably has a large pack of rabid lawyers (it's a grocery store, pretty good target for consumer suits) and the fact that this causes very little actual damage to Microsoft, it'd probably end up being more expensive to sue.

          besides, it's free marketing; Halo2 is on the front page of slashdot again...

    • It would be a pretty simple case to win, as the contract is very clear. The punishment is like $10,000 in fines and loss of the privilage of having new release merchandise.

      I'd say the store manager or district manager for that store/region is in trouble.
    • it was also a mistake.

      Meijer, like walmart, pride themselves in undarpaying their employees. a couple stores had late night employees accidently stock the shelves.

      I bought 2 copies earlier and already sold them for $100.00 each to the morons her at work that have been drooling over HALO2 for weeks, one of them even has printed posters in his cube.

      I made a tidy profit, they have each in their hands the super special early pre-release and get to feel their buyers remorse set in about noon tommorow when th
  • Priorities (Score:2, Funny)

    by rackhamh ( 217889 )
    $265 to play a video game a few days early.

    Surely an undersexed geek can think of a better way to blow $265????
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I wonder if Microsoft has the XBox Live servers for Halo2 up and running yet? If not, its hardly worth the hassle of searching for an early copy.
  • by AtariAmarok ( 451306 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:01PM (#10735830)
    Meijer's should have known better. They'll pay big for this. That will teach them. Next time, they'll give away free cracked copies of "Halo 3" or whatever. Anything is better than actually selling properly-licensed packaged software to customers for the proper price.
  • Fines can be Huge (Score:2, Informative)

    by MISplice ( 19058 )
    When I use to work for a retailer.. if a major release was sold before the date we could be fined as much as $10,000 per copy that was sold. If Halo 2 is that drastic Meijer would be looking at a fairly hefty penalty.
    • They may have called them "fines" but don't imply that there is any law at work here, other than the language of whatever contract the outlet has with the distributor.

      Usually its something like: "If you ever want to sell our games again, pay this additional $X fine"

  • by Chanc_Gorkon ( 94133 ) <gorkon@@@gmail...com> on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:03PM (#10735851)
    This happens all the time. I myself got the Tron Collector's DVD at Walmart 2 days before (wasn't realy looking for it, but I saw it and realized it was early and picked it up anyway...). Usually the way it goes is EBGames, or Meijer or some other retailer will have some low wage guy accidently pop it in the case and start selling it. It wasn't his fault. Then people will see it, think it's out, and go to thier favorite store and ask them about it. Most managers of these stores figures well if one store is selling it, then I sure as hell am going to make a sale as well. Then it just goes by local gamer grapevine and the day before the release date, everyone has it out for sale. I honestly don't understand why they do things like this. If it's not supposed to come out til X date, why ship it so it's sitting in the store room for 3 days? I doubt Meijer will have anything happen to them. They sell too many Xboxes and game for Microsoft for Microsoft to even care. For all we know, it may be a stunt being pulled by Microsoft....i mean the game was advertised by ilovebees.
  • Big deal... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Rorschach1 ( 174480 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:04PM (#10735861) Homepage
    J'avais joué le Halo 2 pendant deux semaines, et appris à parler français, aussi!
  • Reminds Me (Score:4, Interesting)

    by techsoldaten ( 309296 ) * on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:04PM (#10735862) Journal
    Reminds me of how I got my Playstation 2. This happened about three days before they were officially released.

    A friend of mine is general manager of an unnamed software retail store, and he owed me for money I loaned him to get his car fixed. He called and told me to come by the store. He handed me a PS2, the most recent version of Madden, a hockey game and a couple of others. It sucked because you could not buy the extra dual shock controller yet, so he popped open another box and gave me the one from there.

    Just because a store has a release date in mind, does not mean people's agendas change.


  • Meijer stores, a self-described grocery and general merchandise retailer

    For those who have never had the pleasure to go to a Meijer, it's like a large, clean Wal-Mart Supercenter. The smallest Meijer store that I've been in is still larger than my hometown. I believe that Wal-Mart's supercenters are possibly patterned after the large Meijer stores.

    Check out their web site. [meijer.com]

  • All this crappy hype for Halo 2 yet it's already been leaked in French (Still playable) and has been for a good few weeks now.

    Maybe we should start on HL2 and pimp it on slashdot (See : Doom 3), for a couple of weeks yea?

    Slashdot games : Never looked at yet always trying to sell us the latest FPS game
  • Meijer Rules (Score:3, Informative)

    by Ryan Stortz ( 598060 ) <ryan0rzNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday November 05, 2004 @02:24PM (#10736049)
    I've lived in Michigan all my life, not far from Greenville where the first Meijer store was founded. I have to say, Meijer rocks. They do so much for the community.

    One thing I just think is awesome, is that the Meijer family paid for the casting of a Leonardo da Vinci sculpture. The sculpture was to be a 22 foot tall bronze horse for the Duke of Milan. However, before Da Vinci could finish, the French invaded and used the horse as target practics. The Meijer family had two cast, one is now in Milan, the other sits in Fredrick Meijer Gardens in Grand Rapids.
  • Um...I don't see any copies of Halo 2 on ebay going for $265. I see copies of Halo 2 bundled with special edition xboxes going for that, and ridiculous "buy it now" prices of $150, but no $265 prices for just the game.
    • Re:$265? Where? (Score:3, Informative)

      by nukem1999 ( 142700 )
      http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&cate gory=62053&item=8143942614&rd=1
      And "Halo 2: Limited Collector's Edition Xbox" doesn't mean it comes with an xbox, the game itself is the limited collector's edition.
  • by ribo-bailey ( 724061 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @03:33PM (#10736700) Homepage
    ...so excited over a Microsoft software release.
  • by Graemee ( 524726 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @04:05PM (#10737053)
    I want to know if it does the Star Wars battlefront dashboard upgrade. If your Xbox is soft modded will it reset the HD partition and reload the dashboard.
  • by Pionar ( 620916 ) on Friday November 05, 2004 @04:32PM (#10737365)
    Meijer has a reputation for selling things inadvertently before the "drop" date. I've bought a few CDs there as much as two weeks before they were supposed to go on sale. I have a friend that works at one and I worked at one for a while. I got Madden 2k5 for the PS2 this way, also. I've heard that many stores' cash registers won't allow products to be scanned until the date.

...there can be no public or private virtue unless the foundation of action is the practice of truth. - George Jacob Holyoake