Browsing the Best Sellers listings over at gamestop.com and vgchartz.com can be interesting to get a feel for what’s being played on the national and global levels, but doesn’t indicate what people might be playing in the Flint area. With this, a notebook, and some curiosity in mind, I traveled to various Flint-area video game retailers to see what people were playing locally - or at least buying.
Nearly unanimously, the first game mentioned from nearly every retailer was Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. Given the title’s nearly-universal love from critics,there should be no surprise here. Even in the gaming shops on Linden Road and in the Genesee Valley Mall, which, according to employees, tended to sell a wider variety of genre titles than do their Court Street and Courtland Center counterparts, Modern Warfare 2 was still among the most-purchased games.
Other major titles included Assassin’s Creed II thanks to a $20-off sale at Gamestop, and MAG, the PS3 FPS-MMO game released on January 26. Mass Effect 2, the hotly-anticipated Bioware game released on January 26, has also found itself in a number of Flint-based homes.
However, of all of the stores explored and questioned, it didn’t seem to be the new titles that were getting the most attention. Although the various store employees were quick to point out the titles above, as well as the recently-released Darksiders, there seemed to always be more customers digging through the used and discount game bins than perusing the newly-released titles. Further emphasizing Flint gamers' apparent desire for cheap and used games, the Linden Road Media Replay store, a chain specializing in used and retro gaming, had more customers and more working employees than any other gaming store in town.
Despite the breadth of recently-released, high-powered titles, the first event of the Flint Video Gamers' Club consisted mainly of tried-and-true event games; Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Dance Dance Revolution, and Halo: ODST seemed to be getting the most attention.