Much like the cantankerous Scrooge McDuck gleefully rolls around in golden coins contained in his precious Money Bin, I am rolling in Guild Wars: Factions Collector’s Editions. Since Guild Wars is one of my favourite games, I simply had to have the CE of the latest release.
My local videogame shop, bless their well-meaning souls, never had a SKU in the computer for the CE. How could I possibly trust the word of a person over a listing in the computer? Moreover, having worked at GameStop, I know that individual stores have little to no control over the inventory they receive. If you have a game reserved, and the employees tell the computer how many pre-orders they got, you’ll get your game. If not, then you get the unreserved extras set aside for those who did not pre-order. Every version of every game has a SKU assigned to it. This was a problem, because as I wrote earlier, my store had no SKU for the CE. They told me that if they got a CE in, they would save it for me. The operative word being “if”. That “if” made me nervous three months ago when I pre-ordered the game, but I decided to ignore the disquiet I felt at the back of my mind. I decided to trust them.
When news broke a few weeks ago that the CE was not produced in enough quantities to meet demand, I had a minor panic. I read reports from other gamers that their particular game stores actually had SKUs for the CE. How and why did they get CE SKUs at their stores? Oh noes! If my pre-order receipt doesn’t have a CE SKU, did that mean that I wouldn’t get a CE? Was my trust in my GameStop misplaced? I had read horror stories about the Kingdom Hearts II game pre-order fiascos, where some stores sold reserved games to people who hadn’t reserved them. This left a lot of customers feeling cheated and angry. I also remembered my bitter Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence Limited Edition experience. More minor panic ensued, and then ordering from two different online stores to make sure that I got my CE in the first wave.
A few days ago, I got a confirmation email from one online store stating that my Guild Wars: Factions Collector’s Edition had shipped. Huzzah! This one is mine.
Earlier today, I received a phone call from my GameStop. They have my Guild Wars: Factions Collector’s Edition waiting for me at the store. This will go to a guildmate who is ready to buy it from me.
Online store number two has yet to send me confirmation of shipment, scheduled for today. I can easily return this one to one of their bricks and mortar branches, or I can sell it to someone who couldn’t get in on the first wave of CEs.
Some of you are laughing at the lengths to which I went through to make certain that I received a CE. Yes, I know you laugh. You laugh and you mock at my oddness. I know this, but I also have the Collector’s Edition game that I tried so hard to get.
What is the lesson here? Should I put more faith in the clerks behind the counter at my local GameStop? Should I be less paranoid in the future? I don’t think so. One cannot leave the aquisition of Collector’s Editions to fate. Not at all.