Open Guitar Hero III Inside The Store, Some Boxes May Be Empty

Jonathan, an EB Games employee, wants to let you know that you should open your new copy of Guitar Hero III while you’re still in the store, just in case it’s missing the game.

Hey guys, I’m currently an EB Games employee.

Today my Store Manager opened about 3 new GH3 bundle boxes in front of me to verify the contents due to a client coming back to the store yesterday immediately after buying a 360 bundle because there was no game inside. My Store Manager could not accept the return for obvious reasons (open box, missing game) and the client, sadly as you can guess left the store quite angry about it, but after checking out all of our latest GH3 360 shipments and finding out that each and every box LACKED the actual game, we immediately emailed corporate about it.

It could be an isolated incident, but to be sure… I seriously recommend people that if they buy them, to open the GH3 bundles in-store to keep themselves out of any possible trouble later on.

The more we hear about this sort of thing, the more we are in favor of opening things while still inside the store. Annoying? Yes. More annoying than being accused of stealing an item that you never received? No.

We imagine this issue is going to be a lot of fun for retailers on December 26th.

(Photo:largeprime)

Comments

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  1. Quellman says:

    I guess if you plan on gifting it, don’t until more is known.

  2. zomgorly says:

    Did you contact that guy and give him a free game?

  3. Chairman-Meow says:

    I betcha they (the store) only give a hassle to young people who purchase the game. I bet if I got an empty box, they would simply swap it without giving me any problems.

  4. FREAKHEAD says:

    I think that is the rule of thumb no matter what you are buying. Check the box before you leave the store. How many of these stories are we hearing about nowadays.

    Hell, I bought some baby cracker things for my 8 month old the other day and the cashier noticed the box was pretty light, we opened it up and it was empty. I even remember buying a CD in 1994 and the case was empty as well as the next 3 I got in exchange.

    A good rule of thumb is to check contents of the box on any expensive electronics. This is happening way too often.

  5. Buran says:

    So did you call the guy and apologize for stiffing him? You are now admitting that you charged him for merchandise he did not receive and failed to make it right, as you should have done in the first place.

  6. juri squared says:

    Upon reading this, I called my store manager to ask him about it; he said he’s not surprised because they encountered the same problem with Guitar Hero II. Way to go, Red Octane!

  7. DallasDMD says:

    I hope you contacted the customer to apologize and offer a refund now that you realize he wasn’t lying.

  8. Buran says:

    @Front_Towards_Enemy: I had a Best Buy outright refuse to take back a piece of software that was outright defective due to an admitted error in the code on the part of the publisher.

    This was 15 years ago.

    To this day I refuse to shop there because I know that they will not accept goods that are deemed by the MANUFACTURER to have faults. I also no longer use my debit card for purchases and in fact when I accidentally dropped and lost said debit card, I replaced it with an ATM-only card.

  9. Buran says:

    @DallasDMD: Ditto. Furthermore, I hope that customer shops at the competition now that he knows that EB Games doesn’t stand by what it sells.

  10. PinkBox says:

    Ugh, hope they reimbursed that poor customer.

  11. DeeJayQueue says:

    @Buran: I was just about to ask the same question, since that to me would have been the right thing to do.

  12. RogueSophist says:

    @Buran: When the competition is often Best Buy or Circuit City, you’re screwed either way.

  13. Ausoleil says:

    The manufacturer of GH3 seems to be getting off scot-free in this issue. Were I EB Games, I would be hopping mad that I was caught in the gambit of angry customer and lost sale because the factory was shipping empty boxes for me to sell.

    I guess the solution that ends up being enacted will be an even more vile form of tamper-resistant packaging.

  14. Imaginary_Friend says:

    Let’s just end this crap right now and just start giving cash as gifts from now on … or gold doubloons if you’re feeling pirate-y.

  15. DallasDMD says:

    It would be funny if the mfg’r of the game refused to refund EB Games for the empty boxes shipped to them :D

  16. esqdork says:

    @Imaginary_Friend: But what’s the point of cash if everything you buy is just an empty box?

  17. marsneedsrabbits says:

    @Imaginary_Friend:
    Yarrrrr! Gold doubloons for all!

    My husband & I are gifting each other with a fairly expensive Digital SLR camera this Christmas and have already decided to purchase it locally and open the box in the store because we’ve read of this happening too many times.
    As an aside: I called around & was surprised that local camera shops will match the price of major online retailers, so I’m not even going to be out any cash.

  18. Buran says:

    @RogueSophist: There’s more places that sell these things than big box stores, you know …

  19. DePaulBlueDemon says:

    About three weeks ago I bought a Wii at EB Games. After I paid I opened the box in front of the employee and he got all huffy with me. Everything was inside, but I found his reaction a bit strange considering the unit was now paid for, etc.

    It’s ALWAYS a good idea to make sure all items are in the box before leaving the store, etc.

  20. Buran says:

    @marsneedsrabbits: Find a good local shop. You may end up paying more in the end but these places know what they’re doing and their staff are willing to help if you have a problem or don’t know how to do something. I have the good fortune to live up the street from Schiller’s Camera & Video here in St. Louis, and they’re that kind of place. I’ve bought multiple lenses from them.

  21. Buran says:

    @Ausoleil: I’m seriously waiting for someone to sue because those packages maim people who are just trying to open them. Those things need to be banned. Clear easy-to-open packages are the answer — if the package is missing the item it’ll be known right away and will be left on the shelf by the buyer.

  22. Buran says:

    @DePaulBlueDemon: I’m surprised they would get all upset at the sight of a customer making sure they weren’t being defrauded. You would think they would want to cover their asses.

    Then again, given this post is about an EB selling a box to a customer with no product in it, and no mention of EB calling to apologize and offer that refund despite multiple people asking about it, it’s apparent that EB doesn’t give a shit, nor do its employees.

  23. mgyqmb says:

    I’d chain myself to the desk if you wouldn’t give me the game I paid for.

  24. bigdirty says:

    Hmmm… EB, if I were a gambling man, I would be betting that this box was gutted and just sold

  25. vdestro says:

    Yeah, I’d like a follow up on if your manager called the guy he refused the return on and gave his money back. Frankly I’m amazed he left the store in the first place. If it were me, the cops would have been called and your store manager would be currently up on theft and fraud charges.

  26. dale3h says:

    @vdestro: +1, it’s amazing what stores get away with these days. They have policies to “protect themselves,” but where is the policy to protect the customer?

    Next time I get defrauded or something, I will use some police issued handcuffs (of course I’ll have the license to use them), give the key to a friend who stands by for my phone call to arrive and unlock me when I get what I deserve, and I will handcuff myself to something important in their store, that way the POLICE have to come, or my friend (but only when I get what is deserved).

    I know this sounds unreasonable, but when you spend $100 on something, and are defrauded, that’s a big deal!

  27. Ray308win says:

    This same incident occured in my area at Circuit City. A customer purchased a Guitar Hero III from us and was going to give it to her son for Christmas, she got home and was going to wrap the game seperately since the son would recognize the size/shape of the box in full, but when she opened it there was no game inside. She returned to us and when we looked into it, we just traded her copy out for a copy we confirmed had the game inside. This happened in the Texas Region, so who knows how many shipped copies were affected around the country.

  28. dlab says:

    From now on, I will open every single boxed item at the store I purchased at, no exceptions.

  29. Imaginary_Friend says:

    @ESQDORK – The point is that the recipient actually has a gift worth getting. And now s/he can spend however they see fit. If they choose to buy a box full of air from EB Games, Best Buy, or Target, well, that’s their problem. Me, personally, I’ll take my business to a store that doesn’t screw my fellow consumers out of their hard earned cash.

  30. Deltakiral says:

    I actually opened my Blue Dragon game when I was inside Gamestop to make sure that I had all three disc I wasn’t going to chance it. Although the employee at that store are nice and probably would understand if I came back saying I only had 2 disc I wasn’t going to chance especially for a game I’d been waiting to play for quite some time.

    After hearing this I am going to open my bundle of Rockband to make sure that everything is inside.

  31. Lin-Z [linguist on duty] says:

    I work in retail (camera sales) and I know a lot of employees at our store open the boxes and offer to put everything together to people. It really helps avoid incidents like these.

  32. Buran says:

    We’re still waiting for an answer to the question of whether this guy was contacted and given his refund or if you are going to let your fraud stand.

    If you don’t call him you deserve to pay the chargeback fee I’m sure he’ll be giving you when he calls his bank and gets the money ripped out of your account.

    It would have been a lot easier to just give him a replacement.

  33. Imaginary_Friend says:

    @MARSNEEDSRABBITS – We did that too a few years ago, but instead of a camera it was a Thermador oven. Amazing! I go out of my way to price match everything locally now, if at all possible.

  34. Dr.Ph0bius says:

    @Quellman: OR! you talk about this story around them, then at Christmas give them an empty box… then hope they are too polite to bring it up and that they figure it was one of these situations like in the story. :)

  35. StarsRock99 says:

    It amazes me that nobody on here has defended the store at all. I’ve worked for Best Buy for years now and I understand completely why EB would of initially refused the return. Everyone wants to get mad at the retailer but if you worked for one you’d realize very quickly the amount of fraud on the part of the customer. Yes, now that the store realized that it was indeed an issue with their stock of the game he should get a new copy or his money back but initially there is no way I’d exchange an empty box like that. I’ve had people put bricks in boxes before trying to rip us off. Completely different products in boxes, the list goes on and on so it’s really no wonder that retailers want to protect themselves. It has nothing to do with not backing the products we sell, but you have to realize that sometimes the manufacturer needs to take responsibility for their own products as well. We go above and beyond at Best Buy in service to our customers, but sometimes people really are just trying to get a free ride.

  36. dragon:ONE says:

    Isn’t it GameStop now and not EB Games?

    Because the last I checked, the EB Games in the nearby mall is now a Gamestop.

    And less than 1000 yards away is another GameStop. Go figure.

  37. TheDude06 says:

    The ps2 version of guitar hero 3 has a unique box design. theres a box, and then a thin cardboard “sleeve” on the outside. there is a game-box sized rubber grommet in the box. it appears the hardware (guitar, sticker pack) was manufactured, and once the game was done it was inserted from OUTSIDE the box, through the grommet, then sleeved and sold.

    extremely plausable for a copy to have been missed

  38. boreddusty says:

    @Dakota Courtois: They both still exist. I have a couple of local malls (NW PA) that have EB Games, and have been to another mall that actually has an EB Games and two GameStops inside.

  39. macpiper says:

    what the hell is up with red octane? i have been waiting since the day after the game came out for my rma (return merchandise application?) to be accepted or not. all i want is a guitar exchange for one that works right. now this? what a way for a company to drop the ball.

  40. Buran says:

    @StarsRock99: “Above and beyond” customer service at Best Buy? Run a search for “best buy” on this site and you’ll see why we beg to differ.

    Read the messages again, though, and you’ll see that we are demanding an answer to whether this guy was contacted and given his refund. The store KNOWS they illegally took money for a product that wasn’t provided (which is fraud) and there is STILL no answer from this guy stating whether or not they refunded this guy’s money.

    Around here, you see, when something illegal happens or if a business takes advantage of its customers, we don’t like it, and we’re well within our rights to get upset. This is Consumerist, not BigBusinessist.

    And yes, we’re STILL WAITING, submitter, answer us!

  41. beenthereand says:

    Yeah, that is exactly what happened to me a few years ago when I bought an Xfiles DVD set. We purchased it at Fryes (it was a gift for me)and decided to watch it early (I believe xmas should be everyday) only to find…no discs. K, took it back and got another…to find the same…took it back and forced the manager to stand there and watch us open the third…NO DISCS. He thanked us…refunded our money and sent the whole shipment back. They later got several customers that complained after Dec. 25th but they were greeted with a smile because they know knew that the shipment was all without movies.