JB Hi-Fi Is Suddenly Keen On Anthem For No Reason At All

JB Hi-Fi Is Suddenly Keen On Anthem For No Reason At All
Image: EA

We love a bit of JB Hi-Fi savagery, but it doesn’t seem like JB Hi-Fi management was particularly impressed by their recent Anthem review. So one clever staffer has knocked up something more befitting of the new directive.

A few readers and JB staffers have contacted Kotaku Australia over the past week, following the publication of that cheeky Anthem review. Apparently, management weren’t too impressed that someone was having a dig at a game that JB (and everyone else) is trying to get off store shelves.

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That’s pretty logical, although saying Anthem was dead is nowhere near as brutal as calling No Man’s Sky the best refund simulator of 2016. And maybe not as sensitive as showing Pikachu shitfaced on the beach for Pokemon Sun & Moon. Or the unanimous corporate fuck you to Konami over their treatment of Hideo Kojima. And it’s not even like JB hasn’t used the “you cannot kill that which is already dead” joke — one staffer wrote almost the exact same thing about World of Warcraft back in the day.

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But someone high up at JB wasn’t too happy about Anthem, so the word went out: no bad reviews. In response, one cheeky JB staffer decided to offer a new take on Anthem that was compatible with the new directive, which a reader helpfully sent in.


Never change, JB.


    • Of course. Game sales have been growing for the company yearly for the last few years; it’s movie and traditional software sales that have tanked.

    • Unfortunately, in my experience Sony’s pricing structures are keeping at least some of my money going to JB. I really hate physical copies these days, yet I look at a new release on PSN for $109, and the same game in JB for $69…

      I don’t hate physical copies *that* much just yet.

    • I used to buy Bethesda and Ubisift games due to “Australia Tax” from exchange rate and lack of regional pricing on Steam and other stores. Steam improvements in this area eliminated that need!

      At the moment however Epic Store Games has failed to provide regional pricing and its cheaper to buy box gamesat JB Hifi… see Borderlands 3.

      • Steam regional price changes just mean that games that used to cost $100usd now cost $100aud. While still usually costing ~$80aud from JB Hifi. *cough* Doom Eternal *cough*

      • It is interesting that Steam has somehow transformed from the Evil Empire profit mongering empire, killing off brick and mortar stores and accused of all sorts of semi-legal exploitive practices when it first came out into a shining white night of all sorts of gooey gamer goodness fighting the good fight for gamers everywhere with no interest in profit ever.

    • https://www.kotaku.com.au/2019/08/jb-hi-fi-is-rolling-out-gaming-experience-zones/
      Reporting season has finally kicked off in Australia, which means it’s also time for JB Hi-Fi to let everyone know just how well the world of video games is doing for their business. Short answer: business is so good that they’ll be doubling down on gaming over the next year.

      Movie and music sales have continued to tank, mind you, with the company saying both sectors had suffered “double digit declines”. All software sales fell by 7.3 percent, but the company noted that “strong growth in the Games Software category” alleviated the fall. Games hardware also contributed to a 5.4 percent jump in annual sales for the Hardware and Services category, which is all products sold by JB excluding games software, movies and music.

      (Emphasis mine.)

    • Yeah I buy the occasional game on sale from them, as a physical disc version for the consoles is often better for convenience than the digital download version, due to the way consoles manage sharing digital games.

      I don’t think we fit into the “normal house” though, we have 3 xbox ones now (one for each family member, so we can play multiplayer together). But my daughter still takes her games to friends places to play sometimes, and digital editions make that more difficult.

      As far as pricing goes, often the JB price is close enough to online pricing that it’s easy to pick up a game when I’m in the area, and/or when they have sales on stuff it’s usually ok too.

      • Yeah, we have 3 xboxes at home and we are a mix of physical and digital. My son’s box is set as my “home” console and the loungeroom is set as my sons. This means that any games i buy digitally we can both play at the same time together.

        My siblings game share like this as well

      • Digital copies make it easier for me to take games out of the house. I take my little portable hdd with 30 games on it rather than 30 games and games discs. I then plug my hdd into friends Xbox and viola. All games transported.

    • Yep. I buy movies there during the sales, as well as birthday and Christmas presents.

      I tend to buy Nintendo games there as well if they’re cheaper than EBs.

    • JB is usually cheaper than buying digitally for new-release games, so I often buy there for that reason.

      And I get a physical copy of the game, so that’s a bonus, too.

    • Sure. My internet isn’t good enough that I want to wait 24 hours to download 50+ GB games, and launch day prices for most triple-A titles are around $60-70.

  • I mean, sure… stick it to the man, and all that, yeah. But, uh… isn’t this deceptive advertising? You wouldn’t want poor, innocent consumers to get caught up in a snark war and accidentally think they were buying what is claimed to be probably the most amazing thing JB’s ever stocked…

    • No doubt corporate would argue that the tag is a staff members opinion and does not reflect the opinions of the organisation.

      *Sings Ironic by Alanis Morissette*

  • I’ll put it down to an EA executive doing a google search and stumbling upon the Kotaku article, then having words about pulling their games from the supplier.

    This is where I want a meme-gif of EA as Vader from ESB accepting the ‘apology’ of JB Hi Fi.

  • When I worked at JB (first in security & then in sales) staff were always told not to put up any negative stickers or reviews on products or games they were pushing through in store advertising (posters, security gate covers, et cetera) or had been paid a lot to push & promote (basically anything by EA).

    that lead to a lot of snark from staff & more complaints from customers who’d return games they’d been assured were amazing but were broken AF.

    • I was in a JB Hi-Fi a couple of weeks back and heard a staff member flat out tell a customer not to buy Anthem. The customer was looking at picking up a couple of PS4 games for her kids I guess, and she picked it out because it was cheap, but he convinced her that even at that price it wasn’t worth it.

      • When a game can generate genuine bad will with customers, like Anthem has (as well as Fallout 76), JB staff tend to let people know how bad the games are, despite being told not to by head office.

        Now, EB on the other hand, will make excuses for games like Anthem just to try to sell them because that’s what their head office always wants.

    • Sure, when digital is cheaper than physical and doesn’t come with the constant threat that games i purchased could be taken away from me without my consent, I will.

      • Jokes on you! Physical is increasingly just a product code for the digital! And even the physical will be taken away from you without your consent when they switch off the authentication servers for downloading mandatory day-one updates!

        • The first time I was hit with buying a physical game and finding only a download code, which was a collectors edition of a game, was F3AR back in 2011. I’ve been grumbling about it ever since.

    • Because running data centres and consuming electricity to store and download data does nothing to harm the environment.

      • I expect the ‘per unit’ environmental contribution of each copy to those data centres does significantly less harm than physically stamping that copy onto a piece of matter then shipping it around between states or even nations.

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