Colossal UK supermarket chain Tesco has announced plans to stop stocking video games entirely in its 2,800 stores, contributing to the growing demise of physical software. Accordingly Sports Industry.Biz, the firm will begin churning out boxed PlayStation, Nintendo, and Xbox games immediately, meaning that once its current crop of stock is sold, there won’t be any more. It might be a good idea to check your local shop for discounts when it clears out its inventory!
Colossus said its decision hinged on a shift “toward digital entertainment.” It will continue to stock digital wallet top-ups for use on platforms like PS Store, but that would be the extent of its in-store video game offerings. Last month, the four biggest new releases in the UK – Diablo 4, Final Fantasy 16, Street Fighter 6, and F1 23 – sold just 18 per cent of their copies at retail, with the remaining 82 per cent bought digitally.
While Tesco’s decision won’t come as a surprise, it’s only going to help accelerate the shift to digital, which is now snowballing. While we don’t expect physical releases to go away completely anytime soon, it’s clear that they’re becoming more and more niche — and you should probably expect more digital-only launches going forward. Because it’s already happening with big titles like Alan Wake. 2.
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