Anyone who paid attention to video game news last holiday season knows how difficult it was to find a NES Classic Edition system. Nintendo massively undersupplied the all-in-one console and it caused strife for many who desperately searched for one for Christmas.
This time around Nintendo told us that the Super NES Classic Edition situation would be different. They promised increased supplies (some reports say that at least double the units will be available on day one). Plus the system is releasing about a month and a half earlier than the NES Classic Edition did – potentially giving gift givers more time to find one before Christmas.
All of this sounded great, but the reality of the situation is that it might be even more difficult to find a Super NES Classic, even with the supposed increased supply. There are multiple reasons for this. First up, Nintendo has already confirmed that this will be a limited edition product and that it won’t be shipping any in 2018. Second, those that paid attention to last year’s woes know all too well how difficult it was to find a NES Classic, and more people are expecting similar situations this year for the Super NES Classic. This will no doubt lead to more people paying attention to restocks, sucking them up faster than ever before. Then of course we have the scalper problem, where bots scour retail sites to buy up as many as they can as soon as they become available. After the profits were made last year, you can bet even more people will be on the lookout to nab as many as they can to sell for higher prices later on.
We’ve already seen the first signs that the Super NES Classic will be hard to find. Retailers like GameStop, Walmart, Target, and Best Buy all put up some of their stock for pre-order and they all sold out in a matter of minutes. GameStop’s Senior Merchandising Director, Eric Bright had this to say:
The amount of demand that we’ve seen on the website was certainly greater than the NES Classic when it first got out. More and more people want it, and there were a lot of people that did not get an NES, so they’re trying their hardest to get an SNES. We sold out in under ten minutes. I want to say that we sold out in 8 minutes.
GameStop insists it will have additional stock available to purchase in its retail locations when the Super NES Classic launches on September 29. Of course, they won’t reveal how many each store will receive, but you can bet they’ll all be sold very quickly. This is an all too familiar trend with Nintendo products – manufactured scarcity. From amiibo to Nintendo Switch to Wii, Nintendo has shown that it plays the market in a conservative fashion. At least with those products customers know they will eventually be able to find one, even if it’s months or years down the road. With the Super NES Classic Edition already being discontinued after the end of this year, it’s now or never. And that just adds to the insanity. We sincerely wish everyone the best of luck in securing one – you’re going to need it.