Let me start this by saying one thing: I generally detest going to EB Games. When I hunt for a worthwhile video game, I tend to go there last simply because Iím not fond of their generally high prices and annoying marketing tactics. I hate being told repeatedly to please pre-order Destiny or Watch Dogs or whatever the over-hyped game of the week is.
To put it bluntly, I really donít like the store. Itís a deeply unpleasant experience for me. Generally.
I just wanted to write this up because, for once, Iím not mad at them. Rather, Iíve had a strangely humanising experience with an EB Games store.
I kind of only went into the store on this day on a whim. Really, I was bored. Iíd just grabbed a bite to eat after a long walk and I figured ďhey, why not go check out some video games? Seems like a decent idea. Something to play when I get home. Could be fun.Ē
Turns out this store in particular had a game Iíve been wanting to play for quite some time: No More Heroes, or at least, the PS3 version of the game. So I begrudgingly walk over to the counter with a videogame box in my hand, expecting to be lectured on why Destiny will legit be the bestest game in the universe and how I absolutely must pre-order it to get some stupid gun skin or something like that because obviously a pre-order DLC pack is the only way I can fully enjoy the best game that will ever exist. Obviously.
ďHoly shit! This is my favourite game! You ever played it? Oh man, youíre going to absolutely love it if youíre into quirky Japanese humour.Ē
Those were the first words to come out of the guy at the counterís mouth. I was shocked. Instead of getting your typical lecture from the marketing arm of the videogame industry, I instead encounter just another fan of over-the-top games.
Since the store was empty, I figured Iíd just go with it. Mention Iíd never played the game, but heard good things.
ĒReally? Youíre into quirky games, too? Heard of Drakengard 3? Absolutely love it. Canít order it in for you considering thereís no retail copy in this country, but Iíd wholeheartedly recommend you import it or buy it on the PSN.Ē
Dammit EB Games, Iím trying to hate your store with all of my hatred. Why do you do everything you can to make me like your staff? Talking about a game I adore? Recommending I import it? Whereís the corporate PR speak Iím so used to? What is this? Have I gone to Bizarro World?
The conversation with this EB Games employee continues. Since the store was still empty, we talk about our love of the PS Vita, YS: Memories of Celceta and its amazing soundtrack, Ratchet and Clank and how dick jokes significantly improve videogames.
As Iíve mentioned, it was a strangely humanising experience. Itís the sort of thing that makes me remember that some the employees of a game store tend to just be fans of gaming in general, and not the PR representatives of an evil money-hungry corporation. At least some of the time.
When I left the store with my newly obtained game in hand, I came to a sudden realisation; I was never once asked to pre-order Destiny. In fact, there was never once any mention of pre-ordering a game in that conversation. Iíd simply spoken to a gamer.