(There are a few images in this. Please click on them to enlarge and view the details.)
I’ve been thankful for a lot of the support I’ve had from the likes of Ishaan with Silicon Era and Macstorm with RPGamer. And Jess and Tom have both been amazing as well. I’ve found myself with contacts in more places than I can imagine, and even little moments when Falcom themselves would favorite or retweet something I posted on twitter.
Originally, this was going to be a case of ‘hey, this is happening. I should report on it.’ So I started to write this story. Especially as my previous entries have shown. All I needed to confirm is if there was an issue with a distributor in particular with Gamestop. As I said on twitter, why was it impossible to take 15-60 seconds out of their day to tweet to me to tell me just that when I was tweeting directly to them?
However, without the other half of the story, all I can do is work off of assumptions and opinions. I have been willing to give Gamestop the benefit of the doubt, but now, that benefit is gone. I have no more interest in it. This has been difficult and just… argh.
But it gets a little more indepth than that, now.
The Legend of Heroes – Trails in the Sky was released by XSEED Games on 3/29. The first person to actually obtain the game was Sony on PSN. This is a first. This is how my current copy of the game is held. This is because Gamestop, as of writing this article, has not received my copy.
I have contacted other stores to be sure on certain things. These include Best Buy, Frys Electronics, a mom-and-pop store called Gamechop. By the writing of this post… these stores havethe game. Gamestop still for some reason does not. As a result, I’ve been trying to find out information on why’s and when they can expect it. This is primarily because of the fact that stores keep changing their times.
The main issue that has set me off has been this:
Dear Valued Customer,
Thank you for writing to us at GameStop.com
The current release date for The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky is 3/31/11. Keep in mind release dates are set by the manufacturer and are subject to change at anytime without notification. We recommend keeping a watch out on our website for any updates to the product.
Currently we are awaiting shipment from the manufacture. Once the shipment arrives to our warehouse, the items will be shipped out to all the local Gamestop locations. We apologize for any delay.
We value your business and hope to see you soon.
Thanks to Tiael for the email text.
This is the email that their customer service has been sending out. In this case, I can’t say whether manufacturer means publisher or distributor. But when I called to Gamestop corporate, I spoke with someone who had told me that it was XSEED Games that had given them the 3/31 date.
Let me reiterate:
I spoke with someone who told me that it was XSEED Games that had given them the 3/31 date.
And that they were not permitted to move around the release date. That the release date stands at 3/31, according to their website.
Obviously, they didn’t see the mess that their website was over the past few days. And stores are currently saying that the release date is 4/1 instead of 3/31. It was on Tuesday when Gamestop changed their release date from 3/29 to 3/31. Then later on, the website, at one point, even had three /different/ dates posted for the game’s release. See the picture below. (thanks to mastermeow for the screenshot)
I have also seen something similar on gamestop.ca – this is where the site had shown 3/30/2011 for the release date. However, when performing a mouseover, it says this has not yet been released.
Gamestop stores in several location have also actually received the game and sold it. I have confirmed from two of them: one of which is located in Ohio, and another is located in Oregon. …of course, two other stores near the one in Oregon are also saying “we have a 4/1 release date.” But there are even stores where people are being told that XSEED hasn’t shipped the game yet.
This all feels a bit selfish, that I’ve been trying to find the answer to the single question of ‘what happened?’ I felt that it would be a good thing concerning this entire ordeal that XSEED Games has had to put up with for the release of a game that was such a huge task for them.
It’s not that Gamestop doesn’thave the game that has me so upset, though. It’s the way that they handled the situation. The fact that they promptly pointed fingers back to XSEED, as if it were easier than saying, “I’m sorry, we have a distributor issue.” They don’t want to tarnish their reputation so much (too late) that they’re willing to make someone- one of the ‘little people’ take the fall in their stead. Had this been EA or Activision, Gamestop would have been head over heels trying to fix the problem. But not with the little people. Since I learned this, I spoke with Jess, and she even confirmed on her end that their official release date is 3/29. This is even listed on their website, as seen here and on the screenshot below.
If they’re willing to do this for XSEED? Who’s to say that they won’t do it for another developer/publisher? NISA? Atlus? Perhaps they already have in the past, and we just don’t know about it. To me, this has become the principle of the matter. It’s no longer about getting the game I’ve been eagerly awaiting.
In my attempts to contact people to get a straight answer, I’ve left my website with PR people for Gamestop. Who knows. Maybe they’ll read this article. Maybe not. I doubt it. I’m one of the ‘little people’ too. If I were Kotaku or IGN, certainly they’d answer me in a heartbeat. But no. I go by, without contact. As such, all I can do is assume and make an opinionated guess.
Nevertheless, this ‘little person’ has one power, and that’s that I have a voice. I speak, to Gamestop, with my wallet, just like everyone else. The company, to me, has shown its true colors: this ‘little person’ has seen that they don’t care. At all.
I’ll miss talking with the awesometastic manager at the local store I’ve always been to. But if it’s to uphold a standard? So be it.
I wrote this post, originally at 9am’ish this morning. Gamestop has since, not only, received our copies of the game, but they have also tweeted me in response. Of course, the tweet was absolutely no help and provided no information at all. I tweeted a question in return, but have not received an answer at all.
My opinion still stands.