We're coming up on half a year since the release of the current console generation, with the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S having been on shelves for almost six months - we say "on the shelves", but in reality this is only figurative, as the platforms themselves are notoriously hard to actually get ahold of. Now, GameStop has announced a restock.
GameStop sent out a promotional email to everyone on their mailing list earlier today, saying that the various models of current generation consoles from both Sony and Microsoft will be restocked on their website, opening an undoubtedly brief window in which they can be purchased.
It is not clear how long stocks will last, but since the consoles can be ordered online, you have to be quick on the draw - scalpers are known to buy up stock in bulk with the intention of flipping the machines for a profit, and unfortunately GameStop (and other sites) haven't implemented any meaningful protection against bot purchases. Limiting quantities per customer is also easily bypassed.
The restock alert didn't note an exact time when the units will be made available, so it's best to keep an eye on the store page, and just to be sure GameStop suggested clearing your carts before pulling the trigger on the console itself. Among the restock will be bundled options as well.
Stock woes have been synonymous with the new console generation ever since launch, with a huge shortage of PS5s and Xbox Series Xs ever since November 2020. Supply is simply unable to keep up with demand, and the widespread phenomenon of scalping doesn't help either - reselling sites like eBay are flooded with marked-up units in the hopes that desperate gamers will shill out extra cash.
Shortages haven't only hit the USA, as the low supply is a global issue with both Microsoft and Sony struggling to produce the required quantity of consoles. The on-going COVID-19 pandemic exasperates the issue on two fronts - firstly, safety measures have slowed down production, and secondly demand has been increased as more people look to new forms of entertainment to make being stuck at home in lockdown more bearable.
This long-awaited restock comes at a time of turbulence for GameStop. The well known, if not loved, game retailer has been struggling financially for years now, and became the center of attention during a historic stock-short organized on Reddit of all places. This "GameStonk" phenomenon-slash-controversy is still on-going, but is definitely winding down compared to its peak, the impact of which was great enough to trigger Senate hearings.
We'll keep an eye out for more PS5 and Xbox Series X/S restocks.