When Nintendo first announced their Amiibo figurines at E3 2014, I was hard pressed to think that almost one year later, they would reach the extreme level of popularity that we see today. The tiny representations of everyone’s favorite Super Smash Bros. character have scored their own dedicated fandom of “Amiigos”, who scour the internet and fight off sleep and scalpers to add to their collection.
Although there are a good amount of common Amiibo out there, a lot of extremely rare versions (or “Unicorns” as they are so aptly titled), have become so hard to find that they have been going for around $80 or more on eBay, when they normally retail at around $12.99.
This past Monday, Nintendo of America released an official statement apologizing to their fans for the lack of stock and the difficulty in finding all Amiibo in-store or online for regular prices. With the newest “wave” being introduced at the end of May, with characters such as Ness, Lucina, Robin and Charizard, a lot of fans were frustrated when most pre-orders would go up around 3am-4am EST. Most recently on April 27, pre-orders for the Greninja Amiibo at Toys ‘R’ US locations were met with long lines and short stock.
“[We] are already making plans to bring back some currently out-of-stock Amiibo figures.”
Nintendo of America had the following to say. “As our library of Amiibo continues to grow, some figures will be easier to find than others. We are constantly looking for the opportunity to reissue Amiibo and are already making plans to bring back some currently out-of-stock Amiibo figures. Nintendo plans to make it easier for consumers to know when new Amiibo are on the way, through Nintendo press announcements, timely updates on our social media channels and working closely with retailers.”
They went on to add that they will be adding special features to enhance the Amiibo experience with the Wii U, including an app called Amiibo Tap: Nintendo’s Greatest Bits that will allow fans to interact their Amiibo with retro Nintendo titles.
Although this wouldn’t be the first time the gaming giant has acknowledged its sparse stock of certain Amiibo characters, this could be the sign of something promising. One thing for sure is that the craze is nowhere near dying down. With the next wave of figurines being released over the summer, time will tell to see how the preorders and shipment are handled.