MCV learnt last week that many indies had seen their expected shipment of GTA IV heavily reduced, especially for the PS3 version of the game.
“We’ve had about 45 copies of GTA IV cut, so we’re having to disappoint plenty of customers,” said Ashley Parks of Consoles Inc. “It looks like the big multiples are receiving extra stock at our expense.”
However, news has filtered through that Gem has made a dramatic U-turn, restoring the original stock requests of many indies, with some receiving even more than initially requested:
“We were told that the quantity of games we ordered would be severely shortened,” said Yogesh Desai of New Age. “However, we’ve just got word that won’t be the case and Gem has found more.”
“We ordered fifty games per store, but then got a call saying it would be cut to 35 and we couldn’t believe it,” added Stuart Benson of Extreme Games. “We already had 40 pre-orders and I was worried about letting customers down, I even complained to Take Two.”
“But we were then told we’d get an extra 50, giving us more allocation than we originally expected.”
It is unknown where this extra stock has come from, although indies have suggested it could have been a ramp up in production or even a result of street date disagreements.
“There’s rumours that it has come from those who refused to sign the street date agreement,” said Media Entertainment’s Simon Gough.
However, Don McCabe of mini-chain CHIPS claims the extra stock was always planned in order to manage expectations:
"It was a masterclass in management by Take Two," he said. "By cutting allocations it stopped anyone reducing the game's price and value. Once that had sold out they released more stock, it was a very very clever move. Many companies get this wrong, they either release too many games or too few, Take Two got it just right."