June 12, 2007
Location: Stratford Square Mall – Bloomingdale, IL
Employee Description: Pasty Kid and Nerd Girl
Submitted By: Dan
Shortly after the PSP launched in the US I was walking through a nearby mall with a friend of mine and passed through the GameStop. Shortly after walking into the store I got a spiel “Welcome to GameStop where we have PSPs in stock” as if the employee behind the counter was answering the phone. Since the PSP had only launched a week or so prior I asked how it was selling at this particular location. The employee said “Great, it’s killing that kiddie DS” and I responded very politely “Well, so far in its first week or two in the US.” The employee’s reaction was rather frustrated and said “No everywhere, it’s crushing it in Japan too.”
At that point it was the last straw, I’ve worked for video game magazines (both print and paper) in the past and I still keep up with the industry. I knew exactly how well the DS and PSP were doing in Japan since Famitsu’s sales numbers are extremely easy to locate and are updated weekly. At this point I corrected the employee with the appropriate differences in sales figures based on the most recent numbers I had heard.
The pasty employee (and then the nerd girl employee who came from the back of the store overheard) then said “No, you’re wrong. The Sony rep came in and told me they’re killing Nintendo.” I then said “He’s the Sony rep, he’s probably no better informed than that lady siting on the bench by the mall fountain” at which point he became more irritated. The female employee then came up to me and said “Like we’re going to believe you over the Sony rep.”
I decided to settle this dispute, my friend had a phone with web, though the resolution was low, reception was lousy in the mall (since it’s using a cell phone), I was able to bring up the numbers on the phone to show the GameStop employees I was correct. Their reply “Those numbers could be fake, anyone can make a website.” I then showed them several other sources, they remained quite unconvinced and eventually said “Maybe if I saw it in a magazine I’d believe it.”
Since Famitsu is the source of Japanese sales statistics a week or two later I picked up an issue at an overpriced Japanese bookstore in a Japanese mall nearby. While the magazine is Japanese I was very fortunate in the sense that this particular issue had a visual chart of sales numbers for the PSP and DS up to that point. Just for fun I decided to return to the mall (with a different friend and copy of the magazine in hand) a few days later.
To my luck one of the two employees (the pasty kid) was working. After he finished with some customers I brought up my earlier discussion and showed him the chart, at first he tried to deny what he saw since he couldn’t read it, but when you look at pictures of the two systems and numbers attached directly below it, the truth became inevitable. He then said “It doesn’t matter anyway. The Microsoft rep told me they are coming out with a portable soon, and it will kill the DS.”
June 12, 2007
Store: Game Crazy
Location: 1111A 228th Street SE, Bothell, WA
Employee Description: Socially Inept Pizza Faced New Guy
Submitted By: Fed UP
I recently rejuvenated my passion for gaming and was looking to get a taste of the next gen era. I called my local Game Crazy (closest games store in my suburban area) inquiring as to if they had any Xbox 360 Elite’s for sale. I am pretty keen as to gaming news and sales trends so I figured that my chances were slim to none. This spurred a back up plan of asking for an Onyx Nintendo DS with a copy of Planet Puzzle League. The conversation went like this.
Game Crazy: Hello, thanks for calling. (Insert current promotional speech)
Me: No, thanks. I was wondering if you have any Xbox 360 Elite’s available?
GC: Uhhh. . . I don’t think that’s out yet.
Me: It came out a few months back. Can you check if you have any?
GC: (Quickly replies) No, we are all out.
Me: Okay, thanks. I had another question, Do you have any Onyx Nintendo DS Lites for sale and a copy of Planet Puzzle League?
GC: Yeah, we have lots of DS Lites.
Me: Do you have it in Black?
Me: What about the game?
GC: What one was that?
Me: (Starting to get frustrated) Planet Puzzle League for the DS.
GC: (Unreassuringly) Yeah we have one copy.
Me: Cool, I’ll be down right away. Can you put them aside for me?
It takes me all of five minutes to get there. Talking to the employees I quickly realize who I was just chatting with. He’s obviously the “new guy.” I tell them that I just called and ask for the DS and Planet Puzzle League. Sh*t hits the fan. The new guy looks at the manager, then bumbles around, ask another customer who is about seven years old if he needs anything, then asks the manager if they have any DS’s. WTF?? Fortunately they did and I got my DS but only to find out that they didn’t actually have an copies of Planet Puzzle League. Even after the Pizza Face New Guy just assumed that they did.
That would have been the end of the conversation had I not asked for him to call another store and see if they had a copy for sale. Long story short, the other store had a copy, I got my game, and I got to meet the bottom of the gene pool!
June 12, 2007
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA, on Coors and Paseo Del Norte
Employee Description: Some dumb douche
Submitted By: Don
So for whatever reason, GameStop’s computers would not allow anyone anywhere to reserve a copy of Cooking Mama for the DS. I had asked my local GameStop about it several times, and they always said it wouldn’t come up on their computers, then in the DS communities online people expressed the same problem.
So I go into GameStop on the day it comes out – just 10 minutes after it was delivered (I work a few doors down, and my UPS driver told me she had just delivered to them) – and ask for a copy of Cooking Mama “for the DS please.” The douche hands me an open copy. I ask for a sealed copy. He then tells me that he just opened it right then, and he only had two other copies, one for himself and one that was a PRE-ORDER. I didn’t feel like fighting, so I said “whatever” and bought it.
As I’m paying a young lady comes up behind me and asks the cashier “what’s that?” (pointing to my Cooking Mama). He says its a new DS cooking game and he hands her A SEALED COPY from behind the counter. She’s just looking at it and then says she’ll take it. He stutters and then says… “uh, ok you can just buy that one.”
WTF!??? I was so pissed, but I didn’t know what to say and just walked out.
June 9, 2007
Location: Chicago, IL on Cermak
Employee Description: Tall Chubby Dude
Submitted By: elberto
So Pokemon Diamond and Pearl had just come out a few days earlier and are
supposed to be amazing. I’ve played all the main Pokemon games and decided
why not get Diamond? I also didn’t have a DS so I thought I’d just buy both the game and system.
I walk into the store:”You guys have anymore DS lites?” “Yeah here you go.”
“Could I also get Pokemon Diamond?” “Yeah you see the thing is I can’t sell
you Pokemon if you don’t reserve a game. Any game will do, any accessory,
just five dollars. Okay lemme just ring you up…”
The employee tried to go ahead and ring me up until I stopped him. I kept
saying no and no yet he continued. He finally stopped when I told him I
didn’t want the game anymore. He then tried to ring up the DS. I stopped
him again there. I left and decided to go to a Target store nearby. Wham,
bam and I currently have 60 pokemon and counting.
June 8, 2007
Location: Carlisle Pike in Mechanicsburg, PA
Employee Description: Unsure Guy
Submitted By: G1ZM0
I asked specifically and was told that that was the only one they stock so it must work in both the Lite and original DS. I’m glad I checked online before I opened it. The difference between the two is the memory card that goes in the GBA slot. The Lite version fits flush with the DS Lite meaning it won’t fit in the old DS’s.
June 7, 2007
Store: EB Games
Location: Wooster, OH on Burbank Rd
Employee Description: Short, black hair, mangy beard.
Submitted By: Eli Gundry
This story happened on Nintendo DS launch day. I was 13 and my mom went into the store with me to trade in my GBA (original) for a discount of $40.00 on a DS. We had a coupon from the now defunct GMR for this deal and presented it to the clerk. He explained that they had 5 or 6 DS’s and since we were one of the first people inside the store, we could have one. Everything was going as smoothly as possible until I dropped the GBA SP out of my pocket to grab the other GBA. At which point the clerk made up a story a long the lines of, ‘We can’t give you the discount on the DS with THAT Game Boy. We need the SP.’ At which point things went downhill.
In the clerk’s defense, he had no idea about what was about to happen. My mother is somewhat of a cheapskate and despises these store more than anything.
‘What do YOU mean that you can’t take that Game Boy!?’
‘Mam, calm down. The ad say-’
‘Don’t you tell me to calm down!’
‘Mam, the ad infers SP only’
‘You were about to take his Game Boy with the discount.’
At which point things went really downhill, with the clerk came up with a story about how the DS’s were only being sold to pre-order customers only. My mother then said that we were going to go to Best Buy unless they took my GBA and gave the discount. He then lied about how every store in the area had a similar policy to their’s about the pre-order policy and that we would be unable to purchase on today. My mother then threw some expletives around and we were soon ushered out of the store.
We went to the Best Buy across the road and I was playing my DS shortly thereafter.
June 5, 2007
Location: Michigan, US
Employee: Joe Schmoe Jr.
Submitted By: Man
“Yeah I’m surprised more adults aren’t getting into it; it’s got a built-in Palm Pilot.”