Over the weekend, a GameStop store in Maryland illustrated the disconnect between the Wall Street hysteria that has sent the company’s stock price to dizzying heights and the video game retailer’s real-world struggles.

The Greenbelt store was devoid of customers Saturday afternoon save for a preteen boy and his mom browsing the orderly rows of games, most bearing “pre-owned” stickers. Demo stations for “Death Stranding” and “Super Mario Maker 2” were dusty and dormant. The clearance tower was packed with mood lights, ice-cream-sundae-shaped pool floats, and Funko Pop figurines of Conan O’Brien and Duran Duran frontman Simon Le Bon.

“It’s been totally normal,” a cashier said as he scanned trade-ins.

Ordinary investors bingeing on GameStop and spurred on by a Reddit message board have sent the stock up 18-fold since December, rattling the Wall Street hedge funds that were banking on the shares to lose value. The stock’s epic run is largely divorced from the fundamentals of the business: GameStop’s profits rely heavily on its used-game business, though in recent years it has expanded its offerings of collectibles and novelty merchandise. But analysts say those shifts have made the company even less relevant and alienated loyal gamers.

The retailer reported a $19 million loss in the most recent quarter, even as the pandemic helped lift the overall video game industry to record highs. GameStop’s sales have fallen 10 of the last 11 quarters — dropping more than 30 percent per quarter, on average — with the most pronounced declines occurring in 2020, when the overall sector grew 26 percent, according to NPD Group, a market research firm. GameStop hasn’t turned a profit since 2017 and has gone through five chief executives in that time. George Sherman, who formerly led Advance Auto Parts and Best Buy Services, took the helm in April 2019.

Since then, the retailer has closed more than 1,000 stores, with plans to shutter more in the coming months. About 5,500 stores remain, many of them in shopping malls and strip centers that are facing their own reckoning as the coronavirus pandemic enters its 11th month.

“The stock price is zooming in one direction, and the fundamentals are going the opposite way,” said Anthony Chukumba, an analyst for Loop Capital, who predicts that the business could be gone within 10 years. “Mark my words: This will end badly. This company is not worth even a fraction of what its stock is worth right now.”

GameStop’s stock is up more than 1,200 percent this year, closing Monday at $225. One year ago, it was trading at less than $4.

But analysts say neither the recent hysteria nor constant headlines will have much impact on the business. Unlike AMC Entertainment Holdings — another shorted company that saw its stock shoot up, then raised $305 million by selling new shares — GameStop has taken no such measures.

“GameStop could have sold stock and built up a war chest to figure out some sort of turnaround plan that could forestall its demise,” Chukumba said. “But that hasn’t happened.”

The retailer, which is based in Grapevine, Tex., did not respond to requests for comment.

Analysts say the pandemic has only added to the company’s woes as sales migrate online. Consumers are increasingly purchasing digital versions of games on platforms such as Xbox Live and the PlayStation Store, leaving GameStop with both a dwindling supply and dampened demand for used video games.

“When you buy a game for 69 cents and sell it for $8.99, that’s the real moneymaker,” said Stefano Scalia, a digital marketing executive in Silicon Valley who worked at a GameStop store in Fremont, Calif., in the early 2010s. “It’s essentially become a pawnshop, and even that business model is decaying. How much longer are you going to go buy Call of Duty on DVD? You can see the brick wall at the end of the tunnel.”

Another negative: Services like Xbox now have Netflix-like subscriptions for older games, through which users can pay as little as $10 a month for more than 100 games. “Gamers are saying, ‘Why am I going to pay $30 for FIFA 2020 when I can just pay $10 a month and play all of these other games too?’ ” Chukumba said.

Garrett Fields, 24, has a “soft spot” for GameStop, but he hasn’t been to a store in years. When he was younger, he and his siblings would raid the racks in search of cheap used titles like old FIFA games and “Super Mario Strikers.” Sometimes they’d eat dinner at a restaurant near GameStop in the mall, sneaking off to play demos of games like Guitar Hero before the food arrived.

“For me, it’s always been like, you go there for the old games,” Fields said.

Fields doesn’t buy games often (he favors older games like StarCraft and “Super Smash Bros. Melee”), but when he does, it’s mostly online. He thinks something would be lost if physical GameStop stores disappear, but he acknowledged that it’s probably inevitable.

“I do think there’s some redeeming qualities that make it different than a Blockbuster/Netflix situation, but the bulk of it is a Blockbuster/Netflix situation,” Fields said. “Eventually, you’re not going to need games from there.”

The company got its start in 1984 as Babbage’s, an educational-software shop in Dallas. The retailer quickly carved out a business selling popular video games for Atari and Nintendo systems, and in 1999 it was acquired by Barnes & Noble for $215 million. In 2002, GameStop went public at $18 a share. Its stock rose 12 percent on the first day of trading.

GameStop spun off into an independent company in 2004, and soon after, it bought EB Games for $1.44 billion, gaining a foothold in Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. In recent years, the retailer has expanded into collectibles and novelty items with the acquisition of ThinkGeek parent company GeekNet.

Over time it lost favor with gamers, who once camped out overnight for launches of new consoles and games, and was forced to rethink its strategy. Analysts say one of the most valuable parts of its business now is its PowerUp Rewards loyalty program, which has 60 million members.

“That is very valuable information, to know what millions of gamers are playing and to be able to use that to market games and draw them into stores for launches,” said Joseph Feldman, an analyst for Telsey Advisory Group. “It’s the kind of data most retailers just don’t have.”

Even so, he said, the company’s stock is worth about $33 a share, or roughly one-tenth of Monday’s closing price. And that’s one of the most optimistic estimates on Wall Street, he noted.

“GameStop has had a pretty rough couple of years, and they’re expected to keep losing money this year,” Feldman said. “Even their holiday sales numbers [which fell 3 percent] were disappointing.”

Meanwhile, monthly foot traffic to the company’s U.S. stores fell an average 28 percent in 2020, according to Placer.ai, which analyzes foot traffic patterns using location data from 30 million devices. Annual revenue fell 22 percent to $6.5 billion from a year earlier.

“We were clearly behind in terms of digital penetration of sales,” Sherman, the CEO, said in a December earnings call. “We are behind in terms of technology. We still are very candid about having work to do, but we’ve come a long, long way.”

GameStop’s stock got a boost late last year when Ryan Cohen, the founder of pet-care site Chewy.com, disclosed that he had spent $76 million buying 9 million shares, or a roughly 10 percent stake, in the company. Cohen, who along with two other former Chewy executives was appointed to GameStop’s board in January, has urged the company to shift its focus away from physical stores and games to digital sales, esports and virtual gaming.

Even so, analysts said they had doubts about the company’s long-term prospects.

“GameStop could become the Amazon of selling video games, but that’s still not going to change any of the fundamental things that are wrong with this company,” Chukumba said. “His prescriptions have nothing to do with GameStop’s ailments. There’s no reason his turnaround plan is going to work.”

The store has also fallen out of step with game culture as it tries to appeal to a broader pop-culture audience, he said. Increasingly, alongside video games like Call of Duty and Halo are items that workers like Victoria Wood call absurd and confounding: Fuggler monster dolls, gargantuan pickle plushies from “Rick and Morty” and dynamite-shaped “Red Dead Redemption 2” candles.

“They’re stretching in so many directions that they’re not hitting a specific demographic,” said Wood, 24, who worked at a GameStop store in Bedford, N.H., from 2018 to 2019.

Wolverine corncob holders and Zelda Tri-Force tree toppers were piled high on shelves this weekend at a GameStop store at the Mall at Prince George’s in Hyattsville, Md. A handful of teenagers browsed nearby.

“We’re very popular all of a sudden,” said employee Danica Smith, 22, who noted that 100 people had stopped in, nearly double the average Saturday traffic.

But in other parts of the country, employees said stores have remained largely quiet.

Not much has changed at the GameStop store in Fontana, Calif., where Niddia Rangel works. Shoppers, she said, have been more interested in the availability of the new PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X than the company’s stock surge.

“The last week has been slow, as usual,” she said.