Daniel Grossett from Playnation Games in Croydon tells MCV about why retailers need to diversify their range of products and shares his thoughts on VR.
How has business been lately?
Good. PS4 has been doing really well. Obviously it’s been nothing like when a big game releases, like FIFA, but just a general mix of stuff. Uncharted and Overwatch did very well. We were selling a lot of Battleborn until Overwatch came out. You know, it’s very difficult to explain to customers that these are two very different games.
So you mainly sell PS4 titles?
In terms of current-gen sales, yes, but our main thing is selling retro games.
What challenges are you facing?
Online sales have been easily overshadowing in-store sales as of late. We sell online as well, and that’s been doing great. It’s easily a 60/40 ratio in favour of online. So, in that respect, in-store sales are the major challenge.
What are your prospects for 2016?
We’ll probably focus more on the online side of things. We’re also looking to expand our range, not just on video games, but also on card and board games, toys, collectibles, those kind of things. Really, you’ve got to be more efficient; you can’t just be selling video games anymore, unfortunately.
And how is the merchandise and accessories side of things performing?
We don’t stock many accessories but we sell T-shirts, figurines and that type of stuff, and they do very well. Currently, our best sellers are imported from Japan - a lot of anime merchandise. That does very well.
What are you looking forward to this year, games-wise?
I’m looking forward to seeing what Microsoft is planning to do with this all ‘Xbox One-Two’ thing. I’m also looking forward to No Man’s Sky.
What are your thoughts on VR?
It’s not strong enough to be viable in terms of sales. It’s a toy at the moment. It’s fun but it’s still at the stage of infancy. I don’t see it becoming viable before a year or two. We had the PSVR in store for testing and it was pretty popular, but it’s not been something anyone has been pushing for. PSVR is pricy but most of the people actually already have the PS4. But in terms of PC - the Vive is like £700 and you need to get a good PC. It’s too costly.