There may soon be more than just $1 DVD rentals coming out of your local Redbox kiosk.
"If you look at movies and music in some ways, resisting new business models has not been a great formula for success," THQ
Redbox has been testing out the concept since August, offering up video games for double the DVD rate. It's a slick move, because those $2 daily charges can add up in a hurry.
Video games aren't like movies, of course: You can't consume them in a passive two-hour sitting. It may take several days before a gamer is satisfied enough to set aside a particular title. Yet that could be an advantage. Game rentals may actually stimulate sales, since a hurried renter may return the game quickly to avoid extra daily charges and just go out and purchase the game. If a game is good enough, rentals can only help.
Video games are a logical evolutionary step for Redbox. Now that NCR
Blockbuster has been offering DVDs and video games at its stores for ages. Netflix
The arguments against game rentals are that the titles cost a lot more than movies. Many games also have limited shelf lives, like Electronic Arts'
Either way, the games are coming. If other publishers have their heads screwed on straight, like THQ's Farrell, it appears that the studios will be a part of the solution this time.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is surprised that the Winn-Dixie supermarket chain is the only retailer stocking Redbox kiosks in his hometown of Miami. He owns shares in Netflix. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.