Gamestop promoting Facebook game with free game giveaway

With downloadable and web-based games taking up an ever-bigger chunk of the video game market, many brick-and-mortar game retailers are struggling to adapt their business models to a coming new world order that might not need their services. Case in point, game mega-retailer Gamestop, which first dipped its toes in the social gaming waters with its late 2009 acquisition of web-game maker Jolt Online. Now, Gamestop is throwing its weight behind Jolt's latest release, Gangsta Zombies, with free in-game cash and a "free games for a year" contest.

Gangsta Zombies, a Mafia Wars clone with some slick production values, has already attracted nearly 200,000 monthly users since first coming online in early June. Despite this, Gamestop official announced the game's launch only yesterday, alongside its promotional plan for the game. That plan involves giving away free game cards in stores and selling $10 pre-paid cards, both of which allow players to buy in-game items. Store visitors can also enter to win a year of free games from Gamestop, which the company defines as $1,000 worth. I wonder if you can use that money on Farmville cash cards...

So, social gamers, will this kind of promotion get you to step away from your computers and actually visit a brick-and-mortar retailer like Gamestop? Would you change your mind if they were promoting a different game?

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