GameStop has finally closed its stores across the US amid COVID-19 scares and much public outcry. It's been a messy few weeks for the video game retailer and Funko POP pusher. As states across the country have responded differently, most have decided to at least close all non-essential stores and locations, but
GameStop tried to label itself as "essential," citing the fact that many more people are now staying home and playing games due to the social distancing and self-isolating measures being taken all over the US and the world. That would put the video game seller in exclusive company with places like pharmacies and grocery stores, and the leaked memo revealing the attempt by GameStop to do so led to loud criticism from all across the industry.
This came on top of reports from some store employees that say they are out of cleaning supplies and can't do their part to ensure staff and customers are safe in their stores, especially given the abundance of traded-in merchandise which may arrive infected.
Now the stores have closed to the public, though in states where they have not been ordered to close fully, they remain open currently to offer curbside pick-up. With "[email protected]," customers are encouraged to buy online and pick-up at stores where an employee will bring their paid-for merch to them outside.
Unfortunately, this comes with a new issue. According to CheapAssGamer, GameStop has no way of allowing customers to pay off their pre-orders before picking them up. Thus any pre-orders on file are apparently stuck in limbo with no way to get your money back and no way to complete the purchase for now. It's unclear what the company may do to remedy this.
GameStop was in financial trouble even before COVID-19 complicated things further, so while one can see why they were desperate to stay open and in some sense even still are open in some states, it's also only good news that the company is finally catching up with the rest of the world in taking the virus seriously.