Games collapse is devastating news for the UK, but far worse for those who have lost jobs in the process. This quote was taken from a now Ex GAME employee: Almost half of Game Group stores were closed within hours of each other. The above quote typical of thousands of other comments across the UK as thousands of shop staff were being told they no longer had jobs due to the collapse of GAME. Staff all across the UK were instructed to close the doors on thier stores. Customers were outraged as they desperatly try to cash in gift vouchers and redeem points before the outlets closed for good. Staff were laid off from thier jobs, facing a future of uncertainty in an already unstable climte and then threatened by angry customers all in the space of an hour for doing nothing more than their jobs. Games problems were clear enough: too many stores, a failure to adapt quickly enough to a changing marketplace, the price competition of online retailers and supermarkets. And yet, even with foresight of these factors it still failed to save itself. "I believe it could have been avoided," says Mastertronic MD Andy Payne, "but not without radical action some time ago." For him, the sheer size of the debt the group ran up was "clearly a major issue", although he sympathises with the "sheer agony of having to manage a property portfolio" - with all the hideously protracted negotiation of leases and rates that entails. An executive at another leading publisher, meanwhile, is simple relieved not to have a major release out for a few months so he can "watch how it plays out". Payne is not alone in believing the crisis could have been averted. Ian Shepherd - who stepped down as CEO of GAME as yesterday's new broke - tweeted late in the day: "It breaks my heart to see a business made up of such magnificent people come to this and yes, I think we should have been able to avoid it". Yet still it failed. But the narrative must now move on from what when wrong to what happens next. Nintendo's revival of Kid Icarus may have charted at a decent-sounding seven, but I sincerely doubt anyone at the company will be cheering the figure behind that position A buyer may yet emerge to launch a leaner operation from GAME's assets which, in the interests of preserving a high-profile high street presence for video games in the UK, would be the industry's preferred outcome. But there are no guarantees - and the death of GAME is a symptom of wider fluctuations and uncertainties in an evolving marketplace. Anyone with access to Chart-Track sales data can see how serious the situation is in physical retail. I'm not allowed to report on specific numbers, which are subject to copyright, but consider this: the number three game in last week's All Formats chart didn't even break five figures for the seven days. That's really not good, even at this time of year. And this week, Nintendo's revival of Kid Icarus may have charted at a decent-sounding seven, but I sincerely doubt anyone at the company will be cheering the figure behind that position. Payne points to the number of adults under 25 - core gaming's key target audience - who are unemployed and unable to afford new releases, adding also that "the sheer volume of content is making it a noisy world", fuelled by explosive growth most notably in the mobile space. Either way, the GAME is up, and the retailer becomes a major casualty of a transition that is destabilising all parts of the business, the impact of its loss certain to be felt acutely by many in the short-term. Not least the 2,107 who this week lost their jobs in service of it.