13 Tales from Gaming Retail

13 Tales from Gaming Retail
 
 

We’ve all been in a game store; hell, I’ve been in one earlier today. Most of you, I assume, are the kind of people who get in, get what you went in for, and get out; no mess, no fuss. I tend to hang around, have a chat with the staff, ask how their days are going, because I used to work in retail and I know what it’s like.

But then we have the others.

You’ve probably seen some weird things as a customer in a game store, but you’ve seen nothing until you’ve worked in one. I caught up with a few of those who’ve sold games for a living, and collected some of the more unusual stories here.

Venture on, gentle reader, and see what life is like on the other side of the counter.

[All staff and retailer names have been changed in the interest of anonymity and not getting sued. Now they’re all named after cool video game characters. You’re welcome, sources.]

Elizabeth

“I worked in a game store when I was 18, so think Ireland 10 years ago and female gamer shock. We used to have a guy come into our store every day, about 10 minutes before we closed. He’d buy a really cheap second hand game or DVD, then hang around and try to talk to me. He’d even wait outside the shop and try to follow me when I left work. It was super creepy.

“After a while of this, maybe a month or two, he’d come in and trade them all in again, and the whole thing would start again. It got to the stage that my assistant manager would drive me home after every shift. “

Samus

“There was a regular customer that used to come in every Friday morning to buy games. He was one one of those typical guys who clearly lives at home with their mum, and only leave their room once a week to buy games. Well, as with a lot of these guys, he was scared of girls, but for some reason particularly of me. If it was just guys on the shop floor he would do his typical walk around, but anytime he saw me he would head straight for the door. I was never mean to the guy, but this happened every time!

“We eventually started putting bets on to see how long he would take to leave once I came out. Then after a while we would bet as to what would be his reaction if me or another girl would approach him in the most cheerful way possible; you have to make your own fun in retail sometimes. The reactions were hilarious! I remember once he just looked at me and said "No", then just walked off. Another time, a different girl greeted him and he just froze on spot for about 30 seconds before walking off. There were a few like that, but this one really sticks in my memory.”

Ellie

“Being a girl in gaming a few years ago was a little tough. We used to get a lot of dickheads coming in who would refuse to ask me any gaming questions. It was funny to see their faces when some of my male coworkers couldn't answer questions and would have to come to me to ask the imbeciles that would say straight to my face "No, I don't need help, you won't know it, I'll ask a guy". That was day to day.

“With time, I learned to deal with such douchebags, but the funniest was an actual lady doing the same antics. You would think females wouldn't be sexist themselves, but they really are just as bad when it comes to gamer girls”

Sexism isn’t the most surprising thing to encounter in gaming, as pretty much everyone can name at least one instance where they saw something a bit off. But that’s probably the weirdest thing, right?

Wrong.

Peach

“People used to leave their kids on our demo pods while they popped out to do their shopping elsewhere. I'm talking 5 year olds being left in the store for up to an hour at a time. We were retail staff, not babysitters.

“Overall, parents were just the worst, especially when they were stressed out. Christmas always resulted in us being accused of ruining little Jimmy's Christmas by hiding whatever the [insert hottest game that Christmas was]. The parents would always scream at us, even if it was Christmas Eve. I even had one woman start prodding her kid to make him cry to highlight what monsters we were for not having magically known that she was gonna come in and need this game last minute before Christmas.

“Yeah, we saw a lot of crazy in there.”

Crash

“Yeah, we got a shit ton of careless parents buying violent games for kids as young as six. I’d try to warn them, but most of the time they’d just shrug and buy it anyway.

“Kid wants it, what you gonna do?”

Spyro

“One Christmas Eve, a parent tries to cut across a customer, ignoring the 30 person long queue, to try get us to get the games he wanted. So I say “Sorry sir, we have some customers ahead of you, please join the queue and we'll help you as soon as we can.”

“The parent, fuming and cursing, goes to the end of the queue. And he kept fuming and cursing the whole time, making huge moaning and pissed off noises, basically trying to turn the other customer against us for having a big queue. When he gets to the front, he comes up to me and says he needs Forza 3. At the time Forza 3 was a new release, just out in October, and this was  4pm on xmas eve! Sorry dude, no luck.

“But of course I don’t say that.

“I say ‘Sorry, we have none in stock at the moment, it’s been pretty popular for Christmas.’ And then it all kicks off.’

“The guy starts screaming stuff like ‘NO! You don't get it! I need Forza!’

“I try to diffuse the situation, telling him that we don’t have any at the moment, but we'll get them in in few days and to come back then. But he wasn’t having any of it, and starts screaming even louder that he didn’t care, we must be lying, we have one in the back, and he wasn’t leaving the store without it.

“After this, he stands at the till for like half an hour staring at me and my colleagues with the angriest face ever. And I’m not exaggerating, I mean a literal 30 terrifying minutes, until we had to call a security guard, who had to drag him out. All the while he was being removed he kept screaming ‘I just want to get Forza! Just Forza! And they won't sell it to me!’

“Good times.”

It’s not just customers either; other staff can have their moments too

Continue reading on page 2.





 

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Comments Comments (23)

 
Posted by Ryzlin
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 2:34 PM
9
Hahaha! Oh the amount of stories from working in gaming retail as a woman who often had sole charge of the shift. Over all, fantastic place to work but some customers were just .... memorable for all the wrong reasons.
 
 
 
Posted by drunk_monk
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 2:57 PM
8
Corvo's story was really nice, great way to end the list.
 
 
 
Posted by MadDudeHorse
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 3:01 PM
8
Man, that last story... I have something in my eye.
 
 
 
Posted by AdamC
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 3:46 PM
2
That was a good read thankyou. Some crazy ass people out there! I really feel bad for people in retail. The wife still hates going to a shop near christmas lol. She scarred for life!
 
 
 
Posted by Paorio
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 4:36 PM
-3
This was an awesome read, I'm gonna be brutally honest here, a woman who worked at the eb games in my area knew probably the bare minimum.
 
 
 
Posted by Coddfish
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 4:38 PM
7
Holy crap. This is a great list, but that Corvo story... man, it's 4.30 on a Friday afternoon and I'm just sitting here at my desk crying.
 
 
 
Posted by AdamC
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 4:49 PM
4
24 March 2017, 04:36 PM Reply to Paorio
This was an awesome read, I'm gonna be brutally honest here, a woman who worked at the eb games in my area knew probably the bare minimum.
You never met a guy in a games store who knew just as little?
 
 
 
Posted by that_black_guy
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 6:04 PM
3
Great idea for an article

Dat last story tho...
 
 
 
Posted by Ryzlin
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 6:24 PM
4
24 March 2017, 04:36 PM Reply to Paorio
This was an awesome read, I'm gonna be brutally honest here, a woman who worked at the eb games in my area knew probably the bare minimum.
You probably just weren't talking her section. In my store no one knew a lick about Nintendo besides me, bit I struggled with anything Xbox. Especially accessories and tech questions.
 
 
 
Posted by Nick2016NZ
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 6:55 PM
4
“Yeah, we got a sh*t ton of careless parents buying violent games for kids as young as six. I’d try to warn them, but most of the time they’d just shrug and buy it anyway.

Ahhh, pretty sure that selling a restricted game or movie to a parent knowing it is being purchased for a minor is actually illegal also.
 
 
 
Posted by Paorio
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 7:28 PM
1
24 March 2017, 04:49 PM Reply to AdamC
You never met a guy in a games store who knew just as little?
Oh man, do you think I'm being sexist? Change the sentence to a person if it bugs you so much, I'm sorry (no editing so I can't actually change it to be less specific), I was just saying that because the guy being booted out because of his lack of game knowledge was a bit harsh, the way it was written he did seem like a young teen so maybe the hiring guy was just letting him down with the ammo he was given. I dunno?
 
 
 
Posted by Paorio
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 7:31 PM
3
24 March 2017, 06:24 PM Reply to Ryzlin
You probably just weren't talking her section. In my store no one knew a lick about Nintendo besides me, bit I struggled with anything Xbox. Especially accessories and tech questions.
That's a possibility, I'll rely on your experience and go with that!
 
 
 
Posted by drunk_monk
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 9:05 PM
6
24 March 2017, 07:28 PM Reply to Paorio
Oh man, do you think I'm being sexist? Change the sentence to a person if it bugs you so much, I'm sorry (no editing so I can't actually change it to be less specific), I was just saying that because the guy being booted out because of his lack of game knowledge was a bit harsh, the way it was written he did seem like a young teen so maybe the hiring guy was just letting him down with the ammo he was given. I dunno?
It's because the article tells a couple if stories of people assuming women don't know games.

So your response reads like a response to those stories as opposed to the FIFA dude. Surely you can see where those two seem linked.
 
 
 
Posted by Paorio
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 9:40 PM
4
24 March 2017, 09:05 PM Reply to drunk_monk
It's because the article tells a couple if stories of people assuming women don't know games.

So your response reads like a response to those stories as opposed to the FIFA dude. Surely you can see where those two seem linked.
I guess I should've huh
 
 
 
Posted by atipuss
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 11:11 PM
3
Awesome read esp the last one! I do often wonder what it's like to work at a game shop! I'm in retail selling plants so I know half of time its not about products but people esp customers!
 
 
 
Posted by AdamC
On Friday 24 Mar 2017 11:21 PM
4
24 March 2017, 07:28 PM Reply to Paorio
Oh man, do you think I'm being sexist? Change the sentence to a person if it bugs you so much, I'm sorry (no editing so I can't actually change it to be less specific), I was just saying that because the guy being booted out because of his lack of game knowledge was a bit harsh, the way it was written he did seem like a young teen so maybe the hiring guy was just letting him down with the ammo he was given. I dunno?
ahh I thought it was in response to the Ellie one, where people wouldnt ask a girl questions.
My bad for assuming lol.
 
 
 
Posted by Paorio
On Saturday 25 Mar 2017 2:08 PM
3
24 March 2017, 11:21 PM Reply to AdamC
ahh I thought it was in response to the Ellie one, where people wouldnt ask a girl questions.
My bad for assuming lol.
Nah it was my fault, probably should've rephrased it
 
 
 
Posted by TenguNZ
On Saturday 25 Mar 2017 3:09 PM
3
That last one is a tear jerker. Awesome article!
 
 
 
Posted by ThatUndeadLegacy
On Saturday 25 Mar 2017 4:51 PM
4
Awesome, that was an entertaining read.
 
 
 
Posted by Red_Guy00
On Sunday 26 Mar 2017 8:58 AM
3
These are some great stories, especially the last one.
 
 
 
Posted by CoffeeAddict
On Sunday 26 Mar 2017 9:21 AM
4
Great read Brian, I can relate to the babysitting as I used to work in a video store and parents did that all the time. They even asked me to put specific stuff on the big screen so their kids could watch it to 'try it out'. After the first time I learnt!
 
 
 
Posted by Cyco24
On Wednesday 29 Mar 2017 1:08 AM
2
Yeah I know some of the fun (retail for four years and counting ... :,( ) and it is amazing how fast people will treat us. I was talking to a lady on the phone for 40 minutes about laptops/tablets (this is after a team member did it the day before for about the Same time) and get told 'you know your stuff, you must have a tertiary degree. With such a wonderful tone. Always be nice to them as we get so many being sh*tty because that's what we are there for haha. The last story is touching.
 
 
 
Posted by Coulovesren
On Friday 31 Mar 2017 4:48 PM
-
24 March 2017, 07:31 PM Reply to Paorio
That's a possibility, I'll rely on your experience and go with that!
A 50% staff discount? Jelly