Games like GTA V may put retailers out of business

By Alan Ng - Nov 2, 2011

We are just hours away from the big Grand Theft Auto V trailer reveal but now we have some interesting news on the side as it has been suggested that GTA V may not release on disc, and may instead come with just a redeem voucher online for respective stores – sounds ridiculous doesn’t it on first reading?

We agree on the basis that games are slowly moving towards the full digital distribution concept, which may eliminate retail copies completely at some point in the future, but to say that it’s going to happen to such a huge title as Grand Theft Auto 5 is a very bold statement indeed.

That statement has come from Peter Warman, who is the CEO of research and consulting firm Newzoo, as he believes that the game will come with a retail box, but there will be no disc inside, just a collector’s item along with a download code to get the game on the PlayStation Store, Xbox Live Marketplace or Steam. He is what he said in a recent interview with Industry Gamers:

“Boxed games will not disappear, but what is in the box will. That is why the boxed GTA V version will contain a collectible piece of merchandise and a download code. No disc.”

Later on today, we expect Rockstar to announce a release sometime in 2012 for GTA V, and we definitely cannot see them shipping the game without a disc in favor of a download code – that would take away the possession element of owning games, not to mention taking away the fun attached to midnight launches.

We admire his honesty though, and it’s certainly an interesting question up for debate. Are we really this close to total digital distribution for video games? I do believe it will happen in the future, but just not yet for a long time. Retailers are not dead and buried just yet, we’re sure you agree.

If you have something to say on this, share your thoughts with us below. How far do you think we are away from digital distribution for all video games?

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Also See: GTA Online Halloween update 2017 with Vigilante price

  • I really hate the idea of removing disks from owning video games. Hell, I still have all my old game cartridges from the NES and the likes. It’s the feeling of having that property, that, and not having to worry about “What happens if the game gets erased from my system?” or if you have to replace the system entirely, or any other problems that can come with digital format. I will miss my physical copies of the games, that’s for sure.

  • Davidg89

    why are so many people against this, the positives outway the negatives.

    • Just because the positives outweigh the negatives doesn’t mean people still don’t feel the negatives.

  • This is stupid if there is a download code in the game box people can just go into stores and get the code out of the box!

  • if they do, do this then they want to be selling the game for £20 or around that price as once you have downloaded the code you are stuck with the game wether it is good or not and cannot trade it in so they cannot justify the higher price tag anymore!!!

  • Luke180

    I  think this could be problematic for many users who are still using the 20Gb – 60Gb consoles, I know when I had my 20Gb Xbox I was forever deleting things to make room, there just wasn’t enough memory to keep downloading/Installing full games. If disks do become obsolete I expect some major changes in memory sizes because if I installed every game I owned I would easily fill the 250Gb of my current Xbox. I am skeptical.

  • Nicky6

    what a load of crap

    • Robb_0909

      I wouldn’t mind this but it will take up alot of harddrive space and for a game this size, there is no telling how long this would take to download.

      On the bright side the game should be $10-20 cheaper for the fact that they do not have to print discs (I would rather not even have to go to the store, just let me buy it from xbox live). Also no need to get up to change a disc anymore.

      For that matter it would make the new game system “cheaper” if they did not include a disc drive.