DYFY appears on the Island video game landscape

Cody, Lance, and Jackie Fullin went into business to cater to Island video gamers. — Photo by Ralph Stewart

DYFY, a video game sales retailer, is the newest business along a quarter-mile stretch of State Road in Tisbury that has seen plenty of recent changes.

The brainchild of Jackie Fullin and her son, Cody Fullin, the store opened for business in December in the building that once housed Island Entertainment and Radio Shack dealer Vineyard Electronics, both of which moved to fresh new digs across the street last fall.

“It’s gone really well,” Ms. Fullin said last week, standing amid an array of 200 video game titles, gaming accessories and a wall of popcorn and candy munchies for gamers. Game titles range from Disney characters and sports games to mature games such as Call of Duty Black Ops 2.

“We are adding game rentals this month so that kids can try out a game before purchasing and parents are able to monitor the games their kids are interested in,” Ms. Fullin said, an experienced video retailer. She was the manager of now-defunct Hollywood Video store across from the Granite City hardware store at the Triangle in Edgartown.

Hollywood Video closed in October, 2009, and Ms. Fullin tried several jobs before taking the plunge into video game retailing. “I noticed that video game rentals were increasing at the Edgartown store and that movie rentals were facing more competition. And today, there are many other online sources for downloading movies,” she said.

Acronyms are a popular form of communicating in the age of tweets and posts, so what’s up with the name “DYFY?”

“We get that a lot,” said Ms. Fullin as she LOL-ed (laugh out loud for the uninitiated). “No one’s gotten it perfectly yet. It means, Did You Find Yours. We were looking for something memorable and the acronyms we all use in electronic messages seemed like a good variant on the idea.”

The Fullins are sensitive to the public scrutiny of the video game business related to violence in schools and public places. “We’re very sensitive to the violence aspect, and we don’t promote it,” Ms. Fullin said. “There are no guns [pictured] in our windows and interior displays.”

Video games are a significant part of entertainment culture and games have age-appropriate ratings to which DYFY strictly adheres. “If a 13-year old wants an M-rated (age 17) game, we insist on parental approval and, ‘my mom said it was okay,’ isn’t enough,” she said. “We call home to make sure parents approve.”

Cody Fullin noted that the policy allows parents to monitor their gamers’ choices.

The video game business is complex because of the proliferation of play systems that must be supported. “Our games support PS-3, Xbox360, 3DS, PSVita, Nintendo and Wii,” Ms. Fullin said. “The new Wii system is very popular.”

Ms. Fullin concentrates on the business side of retailing and Mr. Fullin specializes in the gaming aspects of the business. “There are always new games, like Call of Duty, our biggest seller right now, and there’s a seasonal aspect as well,” Mr. Fullin said.

“We had a solid run on the NHL hockey game when there were no games (during the recently ended labor dispute). Sales have continued because now they’re playing again. Madden 13 (NFL football) is always strong in the fall when that season begins,” he said.

Mr. Fullin is happy in his new career. “What kid wouldn’t want to work in a video game store?,” he said.