Despite Nintendo's insistence that its upcoming SNES Classic Edition console won't be impossible to find, things aren't off to a great start. The console doesn't come out until September 29, yet both Amazon and Best Buy are already sold out of pre-orders.
You're forgiven for missing the alert: Best Buy pre-orders reportedly went live somewhere around 1:20 a.m. ET, while Amazon reportedly went live a bit later at 4:45 a.m. ET or so. Both sold out quickly, within minutes.
Notably, there are still several retailers planning to offer pre-orders of the SNES Classic Edition that have yet to go live: Toys 'R' Us, Target, Walmart, and GameStop. It's unclear when those retailers will offer the system for pre-order, and Nintendo didn't respond to a request for comment regarding pre-orders going forward.
Still, if you're a fan looking to buy a SNES Classic Edition, this is a frustrating situation. Even the most dedicated fan isn't up in the middle of the night on the lookout.
"We appreciate the incredible anticipation that exists for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System: Super NES Classic Edition system, and can confirm that it will be made available for pre-order by various retailers late this month [August]. A significant amount of additional systems will be shipped to stores for launch day, and throughout the balance of the calendar year."
It is of course true that you'll be able to walk into a store on September 29 and buy the SNES Classic Edition, but so will many other people. And chances are that, whatever store you walk in to, supplies will be severely limited while demand is quite high.
In so many words, the best way to guarantee that you get an SNES Classic Edition console is to pre-order it.
If this sounds familiar to you, that's because Nintendo's NES Classic Edition console — released in late 2016, seen above on the left — had the same issue. The NES Classic Edition and the SNES Classic Edition are inexpensive, sought after by millions, and produced in a limited quantity. The result of that combination is obvious: The product is impossible to find.
The discussion becomes, "Nintendo has a hot new product that you can't find anywhere." The downside, of course, is that Nintendo fans and general consumers are furious that they can't buy a product that's highly sought after. But maybe they'll buy a Nintendo Switch instead!
"We aren’t providing specific numbers, but we will produce significantly more units of Super NES Classic Edition than we did of NES Classic Edition."