After the launch of a highly anticipated product, it’s not unusual for supplies to run low. One retailer determined to make sure the launch was not marred by such shortages decided to take things into its own hands.
GAME has admitted that it advised staff to purchase 3DSes from Tesco in order to inflate its preowned stock of consoles. A memo sent out to stores and obtained by Eurogamer details the procedure staff were to follow when taking money to the till to purchase the system from Tesco.
The supermarket is offering the 3DS for £175 when purchased along with a 3DS title (£34.50). GAME admitted in a staff memo that while it could not match the attractive £209.90 bundle, it was authorising the removal of money from store tills to buy up to five of the bundles at a time. The idea was that staff would purchase the cheaper 3DSes at Tesco before returning to GAME and trading in the device and game for £209.90. GAME then planned to sell the game "the same price as mint due to expected supply shortage."
A GAME spokesperson told Eurogamer: "Some of our stores wanted to move quickly last weekend to build their pre-owned stocks of 3DS at the same time as their local competitors, so we gave them a process to do that. It was not mandatory, and happened in small volumes."
Nintendo, which is set to release UK sales data for the 3DS this week, does not seem too bothered about the retailer’s behaviour.
"We believe the level of this activity to be very, very minimal and as such believe it will not significantly influence our final GfK Chart Track number."