If you are a general manager at a GameStop retail store, you not only will you be selling Sony's PlayStation 4 game console when it is released in the US on November 15th, you will be getting a PS4 for free. GameStop announced this move today as part of its GameStop Expo event in Las Vegas.
We started getting reports about this move when we spotted a number of messages on both Facebook and Twitter, including the one below:
Just heard that Sony is giving all of the Gamestop store managers at the conference this week a free PS4. Pretty cool IMO.— Geoff Farinha (@GeoffEff) August 26, 2013
We contacted GameStop's PR rep Jackie Smith for comment and she confirmed the news to us and the fact that the free consoles will be given to all managers, even if they didn't attend the expo. In addition to the free PS4, GameStop general managers will also get seven PS4 launch game titles. GameStop currently has over 6,500 stores in 15 countries so that means Sony is giving out thousands of its PS4 consoles and tens of thousands of games to GameStop employees.
This is clearly a marketing push by Sony as they know that if the managers have a PS4, they will likely push their sales staff to sell that console too. We know that there is a strong rift between console fans and giving the mangers a free PS4, is an easy way to get them to join team Sony.
Of course, does this mean Microsoft will counter with a similar Xbox One free console offer to GameStop managers? Smith told us, "We'll see what happens - stay tuned to social media!" We have emailed Microsoft for comment but have yet to get an official response.
Update: Sony has also confirmed via their Twitter page that GameStop stores will sell an Azurite Blue color version of the PS3 console October 8th, with pre-orders starting tomorrow.
Update 2: Joystiq has confirmed our report and added the list of free PS4 games that GameStop general managers will receive: Killzone: Shadowfall, NBA 2K14, Madden, FIFA 14, Need for Speed: Rivals, and Battlefield 4. The seventh free game is a PS3 title: Beyond Two Souls.
Source: Geoff Fainha on Twitter