I suppose that in light of the popularity of the new Switch, Nintendo has decided to be all sheisty with their amiibo once again. I’ll try to keep this short without too much bitching – you can read about my renewed woes in this previous piece.
Of the 15 amiibo dropping between now (May 19th to be exact) and August (I think the cutoff is technically Jul 28th), 6 of them have entered into this sort of “exclusivity limbo” which I thought was long behind us. The rest seem to be fairly normal and widespread in their release, including the Celica and Alm 2-pack, 3 new Splatoon amiibo to coincide with the release of Splatoon 2, the 3 final SSB DLC characters (finally!), and the lone lil’ Pikmin straggler.
The remainder were designed to be a little rarer: 3 different versions of Link, one each from Majora’s Mask, Skyward Sword, and Twilight Princess; and then “Player 2” costume variants of the new DLC characters. It was soon revealed that Link – Twilight Princess and Cloud – Player 2 would be GameStop exclusives, and Link – Skyward Sword and (Female) Corrin – Player 2 would be exclusive to Amazon.com. Majora’s Mask Link and Player 2 Bayonetta were still up in the air. Both GameStop and Amazon.com had their exclusives listed as “unavailable,” and that’s about where we left things.
Except that really may not be a great representation of the entire picture. See, I’ve learned not to trust GameStop’s website over what they can tell you in the stores. I was at my local GameStop talking to an unfamiliar guy about the Switch and then led into the amiibo stuff. Turns out that, despite everything NOT AVAILABLE on the website, he actually did have some Player 2 – Clouds available. However, he quickly dismissed the issue of Twilight Princess Link – I don’t even think he checked – and I seriously doubt his claim because not 5 minutes before he had completely denied the existence of Switch bundles for sale the night before, and I flat out checked by phone not 5 minutes after I walked out and those Switch bundles were still available and remained available until about 7 that evening. This asshole was a little bit of a hotshot know it all, but whatever, at least I squeezed Cloud 2 out of him. I’ll go back in a week or so and land on an employee I know/like and we’ll see about that damn Link.
The other twist is that it seems that while GameStop wants us to think that they’re sold out of their exclusives, Amazon’s may not even be for sale yet, despite the messages given on their pages. I’ve been checking these pages daily without any further answers.
So fast-forward to sometime yesterday, and there seems to be a break in the case. The remaining 2, Majora’s Mask Link and Player 2 – Bayonetta, were listed as Best Buy exclusives. And guess what? Link was all sold out while Bayonetta 2 was right there ready for pre-order. And yet this information didn’t seem to be any older than about May 3rd. Really? Really?? All those Links disappear in what was probably less than 48 hours and yet now, a day later, we still have Player 2 – Bayonettas available…?
I don’t know what to think. If the 3 Links are all gone, I guess I can hope for a second round of pre-orders as long as I keep checking diligently. I mean I know it’s not totally unheard of – I know these exclusives used to sell out in mere minutes – but this was way back in early-mid 2015. So as it is I stand to get scalped on 4 of the new 15. I guess the best I can hope for is to show up early; bad news is that both Best Buy and GameStop open at 10am, so I won’t have the chance to show up at both right when they open in the hopes of snagging any extras – the GameStop around here almost always had 1 or 2 extra exclusives and this was how I got mine before I was able to reliably pre-order.
And really, the sad thing is I don’t even care about having this army of Links…we’ve already had a ton of ’em drop recently. What I don’t want, however, are holes in my collection. I often wondered when/if I was going to stop my amiibo collection…one thought I had was that once they become Switch-exclusive they’ll be branded something new, thereby “officially” ending the “official” amiibo line. Nintendo seems awfully desperate to go ahead and disassociate themselves from the Wii U anyway that I could see it happening. Then again there are other collectors who proclaimed that their amiibo collections would start and stop with Super Smash Bros. Whether this means they skipped over everything that wasn’t SSB or were going to collect everything until all of SSB was finished isn’t always made clear. At any rate, the releases of Corrin, Cloud, and Bayonetta…and I guess by extension their “Player 2” counterparts, will be the final nail in the figurative SSB coffin.
So what in the hell do you think is happening here? Are these 3 Links really that popular, despite how many Links have already been released? Is it just the exclusivity driving them? If so, wouldn’t the other exclusives disappear quickly? Is this just some big hype game from Nintendo to recreate the glory (read: hell) days of amiibo collecting? I don’t rightly know – but there is a lot of time between now and June 23rd, certainly enough time for something to happen to these elusive exclusives.
Give me your thoughts on the issue, and if you’re a fellow former or current amiibo collector, tell me why you stopped – or why you keep collecting – or when/if you plan to stop, etc.