Store: GameStop
Location: St. Louis, MO
Employee Description: Surfer Dude and Older Woman
Submitted By: Ed Button

I walked into my local GameStop today to snag Stranglehold on release day (what can I say, I wanted the faceplate), and asked Surfer Dude at the counter if I could get a copy.

“Oh, we haven’t got that yet. Our computer says it’s been delayed until the 17th.”

“…the 17th,” I asked. I keep up with gaming news all the time and had heard nothing of this delay.

Older Woman chimed with: “Yeah, we’re horribly sorry. It turns out Midway wanted something to compete with Halo 3.”

I was stunned. No way could something like Stranglehold compete with the Halo 3, possibly the most anticipated game of the year. “Sooooooooooooo do you wanna pre-order a copy of Halo 3,” Surfer Dude asked. I said no, and that I’d be back. Then I left. I’ve never had an issue with EBuncolandStop. All the people that have worked at them have been nice and polite, and dare I say it, knowledgeable, so I was quite shocked by this statement.

I called the EB about a mile down the road and asked if they had it.

“No,” the guy says, “our computers say its been delayed until the 17th. From what I heard from corporate, it’s been pushed back because Midway had some issues with the shipping.”

A 13-day delay because of shipping?

“Well, your website says its out now, and so does everywhere else,” I said.

“Well, I checked Best Buy before I came in today, and they don’t have it,” he said.

After getting off of the phone with him, I call Best Buy.

“Yeah do you guys have Stranglehold for the 360?”

“Yes sir, we have it.”

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.

Store: EB Games
Location: San Francisco, CA on Powell Street
Employee Description: Honestly, I’ve seen so much employee turnover at this store, that the faces are lost to the sands of time.
Submitted By: Lee

I’d learned long ago that anything I preordered at EB would be in stock at Best Buy on the same day.  However, one game was important enough to preorder: the Limited Edition of Neverwinter Nights 2. Preordering gave you the game editor ahead of time, and the LE itself included not only the usual in-box goodies, but a special ability for your in-game character (including access to special vendors).  I had helped run a world server for Neverwinter for a few years, so this was the one game of the year where I wasn’t messing around.

The preorder itself was where it all started.  Upon preordering, I was supposed to receive a card with my access code for the game editor.  I didn’t get the card, and was told to check back in a week.  I kept checking back.  When the editor had been out for a few days (and I still couldn’t get it for lack of a code), I went in and insisted that they must have the codes for preorder customers.  After watching someone scrounge around for fifteen minutes in the back room, I picked up the small sign on the counter that explained the preorder promotion, to point out what it said… only to discover a stack of preorder codes tucked into a convenient holder on its back.  They had been there, in view of the employees, the entire time.  I took mine and left.

The week of release rolls around.  Monday night, I get an automated message, letting me know that my Limited Edition copy of the game would be in on Tuesday.  I stop in late Tuesday, to be told that it was not there, and that I should come in Wednesday.  On Wednesday, I was told to come in Thursday.  On Thursday, I was told to come in on Friday.  On Friday, I was told “We’ll call you.”

On Monday, I was reasonably upset.  If I had acquired the game by any other method, I would have been playing it for nearly a week.  I went in and insisted on an answer; what on earth was going on?  Finally, the truth came out.

They hadn’t ordered enough Limited Edition copies.  I was the one shortchanged. By Friday, when they figured out that I wasn’t just going to go away, they actually went and bought a spare LE copy from a nearby store.  It arrived just after I had left the store on Friday.

At that point, one might think, “we should go that extra step to make sure this customer gets this game, which we went to all that effort to acquire.”  One would be disappointed.  They left it to the automated system to call me.  The automated system never called.  They held onto the game for 48 hours, then when Monday rolled around, they sold it to someone who walked in the door.  After relaying this information to me, they inform me that they could not acquire another copy. They
ended this tale of sorrows with a half-hearted, “I guess we could call the district manager…” and then turned away.

You know that moment when you go completely silent and outwardly calm, and everyone around you suddenly realizes they were better off when you were furious?  That was me.

I asked for my money back.  They provided a refund.  I put the receipt in my wallet, and pulled out a different one.  I said, “This is a $600 receipt for a console preorder in three weeks.  It’s paid in full. Your company will deliver this to me on release day, as per our agreement.  That will be the last business we perform.”

Within a few weeks, a Best Buy opened near my house.  It had tons of copies of NWN2 Limited Edition.  Coincidence?

Store: EB Games
Location: Pittsburgh, PA – Forbes St.
Employee: Young Prick
Submitted By: DJBabs

After securing myself a Wii over winter break in New Jersey, I decided to preorder a copy of WiiPlay upon returning to graduate school in Pittsburgh. I received the automated call on the Monday of the release saying that it would be in the next day, so I decided to go pick it up with my girlfriend after my class got out at 4 PM.

We walk in, and while she is looking around at some of the games, I go up to the counter and ask the young prick behind it for my preorder (interrupting him talking about how hot my GF was to another employee). He snapped back that they didn’t get them in today, and won’t be getting them in for another 2 days. I retorted that I got the automated call the previous day saying that it would be in the store by noon on Tuesday (it after 4 PM) and then asked why they would be getting them in two days later. His response was that since the store is on the East coast, and all the games are shipped from the west coast on Monday, the east coast stores don’t get new games in on Tuesdays and instead get them on Thursdays. I said that was ridiculous since I had been preordering stuff at a New Jersey EB Games since I preordered the Dreamcast and that they always got the new games in on Tuesdays. His then decided to basically shout, “well I don’t know what planet you are from, but East Coast GameStops and EB Games never get their games in on Tuesday!”

I demand my preorder money back, and say I’ll drive over to Best Buy and pick it up there. The prick responded that I couldn’t get the preorder money back since the game was already released (even though they didn’t have it yet), but I could transfer the money over to another purchase and then tried to get me to buy a PS3. I eventually argued my way to get my money back and as we walked out the door, the young prick shouted at my GF, “loose the dick that thinks he knows when we get our shipments in and go out with me!”

We then drover over to Best Buy and found stacks of WiiPlays. I have refused to step foot in that EB again.

Pre-Order Stunt

June 5, 2007

Store: Best Buy
Location: Toledo, OH
Employee: The Man with the Photographic Memory
Submitted By: Kid Chameleon

Ok, this hasn’t actually finished playing out yet, but I went to Best Buy the other night to pre-order a Limited Edition copy of Jade Empire for Xbox cause I guess the limited edition has an extra playable character and some other extras and you can only get it from Pre-Order (at least that’s what i heard). So anyways, I had looked on Best Buy’s website and saw they had the regular, but not the limited edition available for preorder (I had to order at Best Buy cause I have a games giftcard). So I get over there, and ask about the limited edition, and the guy there told me that he’d remember me, and put one aside so when I come in to get it there will be a limited edition waiting there for me instead of the regular game. I don’t see how this is going to happen considering I don’t even know if BB is getting the limited edition, this guy didn’t take down any of my information, I bought a pre-order for the regular version, and who knows if he’s even going to be working when I go to pick it up. Normally, I would’ve just gone somewhere else cause I thought that claim sounded pretty ridiculous, but like I said I have a giftcard and the only reason I’m even buying the game is because of that.