Commentary: Thought you'd preorder an SNES Classic online? Think again.
I sure hope you weren't hoping to preorder the Super NES Classic Edition, the pint-size remake of one of Nintendo 's most beloved game consoles . Because Nintendo doesn't seem to want your $80, £80 or AU$120.
How else would you explain what loyal Nintendo fans went through in the past 18 hours?
Make no mistake: These things are Nintendo's fault. Yes, these retailers did a poor job notifying people, and sure, their websites couldn't handle the load. But if Nintendo hadn't decided to produce and allocate so few SNES Classics to begin with, or if Nintendo had figured out a way to fairly distribute them (a raffle, perhaps?), far fewer people would walk away disappointed.
We thought things would be different this time. That Nintendo would learn from its gross underestimation of just how desirable last year's NES Classic would be, and produce more units this time around. That Nintendo would have a plan to fairly distribute those units to the masses, instead of handing them to those who just happened to be in the right place in the right time, or -- worse -- robotic scalpers.
To be sure, Nintendo hinted early on that SNES Classic supplies might be limited, but there were some early signs that Nintendo had indeed learned its lesson -- particularly when Walmart apologized for accidentally announcing SNES Classic preorders back in July. Reading between the lines, it sure sounded like Nintendo had chastized Walmart for ruining its master plan. Which made us think that perhaps Nintendo had a master plan to begin with, instead of chaos.
Clearly, that wasn't the case. Chaos prevailed, and it makes us wonder if chaos is what Nintendo is hoping for come Sept. 29. That's the official launch date for the SNES Classic, and it's when retailers (including GameStop, Target and Toys "R" Us) have said some will be available to buy in brick-and-mortar stores. Remember what parents and kids did for Beanie Babies or a Tickle Me Elmo back in the 90's? Remember the resale prices then?
That publicity made those toys legendary -- and the resulting craze made a fortune for the company that produced them, even if many of the Beanie Babies people purchased were (comparatively) worthless.
Maybe Nintendo's banking on that idea, hoping it can train its fans to mindlessly purchase whatever it sells in the hope it'll be worth something someday. Or maybe Nintendo's simply hoping stoke the flames of Nintendo nostalgia strongly enough that people run out in droves to purchase its new Nintendo Switch instead.
But how many times can Nintendo disappoint fans before their patience wears thin?
Nintendo didn't respond to repeated requests for comment.
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