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Editor's take: Experienced scalpers use software supplied from firms like Carnage to quickly buy up stock of in-demand items such as the PlayStation 5, then turn around and sell them for a profit on third-party marketplaces like eBay. Slowing them down has proven difficult, and really, do manufacturers and retailers even care?
Sony promised to deliver additional PlayStation 5 stock late last year ahead of the holidays but ultimately, the console remained next to impossible to find at retail.
More positive news came early this month when insiders claimed Sony was planning to boost production of its next-gen console to help cater to demand. And when UK retailer Game announced it had fresh stock of the PS5 this week, eager buyers were ready to do business. Unfortunately, so were scalpers.
According to a Twitter post from one popular bot maker, their buying software completed over 2,000 PlayStation 5 checkouts from Game’s restock. “Just keeps getting easier every time,” the firm added.
Carnage bots doing better than ever from @GAMEdigital's PS5 stop drop this morning. Really sad. I want a PS5 badly but refuse to fund scalpers so will just have to wait it seems. pic.twitter.com/BsvMOwSyQZ— Rachel Dacre (@Stingrach_) January 19, 2021
Carnage has since made its tweets private, no doubt in response to all of the negative feedback from disgruntled buyers.
A spokesperson for Game told GamingBible that all orders are subject to checks. “At the present time these orders are still pre-orders and as such no payments have yet been taken from customers,” the retailer said. “Payments will commence once our order checks have been completed,” the spokesperson added.
As of writing, PS5s are commanding anywhere between $750 and $850 over on eBay. A digital-only PS5 sells for $399 at retail while a model with a disc drive goes for $499.