Today marked the beginning of the chaos for Wave 4 of Nintendo’s Amiibo figures. With many of the main-line characters already receiving figures, the new waves of figures are proving to be more of a fight to get at due to their smaller numbers and perceived smaller fanbases.
So, in anticipation of this, I went out to a local GameStop in attempts to lock up a Lucina Amiibo figure, probably the only one I really wanted. As I walked through the doors as the store opened, the clerk informed me that their system was getting hammered by people trying to order the figures. She attempted to place the order for me but was blocked by her system (which was tied into the same online logjam) informing her that the stock was already sold through.
Living in Hawaii certainly has its perks, but not this time. Clearly being on the bad end of nationwide stock count puts my odds at next to nothing when it comes to reserving limited stock items. I chatted with the clerk, who was sympathetic as she wanted to purchase these things as well, but couldn’t since she was alone. I suggested to her that the a better approach would to have stock allocated by region that preorders can pull from. This would allow customers on the west coast to arrive at their prospective brick and mortars, make their reservations and go about their day. I had read about customers in the Pacific and Mountain time zones who were just as unlucky as me.
And in a day and age where online preorders are decimating the supply chain? Count that as a separate region as well, with its own supply. Once the brick and mortar preorders slow down, release those preorders to the online stock and open pre orders there.
Ultimately, the goal of a company like GameStop should be to drive customers into their stores, versus fighting a losing battle on their website. They already don’t have the greatest of web presences in the world and their draw is to get people into their store and looking at the plethora of games they have to offer.
At this point I am not out of the woods yet in regards to finding a Lucina Amiibo, there are other retailers who might have stock when Wave 4 releases in late May. So I will keep trying until I get one. Heck, I might even be willing trade this silly Gold Mario Amiibo that I somehow got in exchange for a Lucina.