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Pwned by Amazon – The Nintendo Switch Launch Disaster

by on March 4, 2017

It’s March 4th approximately 6:40 am at the time I am writing this. The Nintendo Switch just had a glorious launch, people are enjoying it, some aren’t, mostly everyone I’ve heard loves and is in awe of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. This is all great for Nintendo trying to revive their brand and move into the future. But there was a major issue that left countless gamers a more bitter taste in their mouths than tasting the cartridges they cant even touch or know where the hell they are thanks to Amazon. Me included.

January 13th 2017 at around 1 am I placed my Nintendo Switch pre-order. I then placed an order for Zelda: Breath of the Wild separately just in case one got delayed I’d be able to get the other and gawk at it without being too upset. Fast forward to March 1st, I checked the status and it said preparing shipment on both orders. SWITCH HYYYPE!! I assumed everything was in order. Wake up March 2nd..Still in ‘Preparing Shipment’. I was a little worried. I know the distribution center isn’t too far away so I wasn’t too worried that I wouldn’t get it on launch day. In fact when I ordered Fallout 4 Collectors Edition on PC it actually came a day early. Eh, so what I couldn’t get it a day early. I really wanted to do an unboxing for everyone and stream it a day early, eh I’d be behind in the unboxing game but oh well right? Checked later that night on the 2nd…still ‘Preparing Shipment’ over 24 hours of getting at least one box together? I was getting a little upset. Everyone told me eh it’s Amazon they’ll get it to you. Queue, March 3rd. I wake up, same status. Ok what the fuck. I get to work, and there is an update! ‘Shipping Today – Arriving by 8 pm’ Ok here there is some hope. But wait…no tracking number. Ok, now I just have to ask. Is there a technical issue? Maybe it was already shipped and not updated? I hopped onto their chat. I was promised it would be there at 8 pm. Asked if they could see what distribution center it would come from. They didn’t know. No information besides a promise of 8 pm and that I would get an email update. 4 pm comes around and no update whatsoever. I get back into chat trying to figure out whats going on. This is what I get:

04:18 PM PST Rekha: I’ve checked your order details and see that your package is shipping from our fulfillment center in Tracy, CA and should be leaving from our fulfillment center shortly.
There is no problem with your order.
04:19 PM PST Jason Germino: Well is going to make it by the 8 pm that was promised?
On my end it shows no one has even touched my order and has been ‘Shipping today’ for two days
04:21 PM PST Rekha: I see the item is shipping from the nearest fulfillment center your location and will be delivered within end of today as promised.
Our promise to you is to get the item to you by Friday, March 3, 2017 and we do everything necessary to ensure your package arrives on time.
04:22 PM PST Jason Germino: Is there a reason why there arent any updates?
04:23 PM PST Rekha: This might be due to a technical glitch. I’ve escalated this to our internal team to fix the issue.

Ok. Now I have that sinking feeling that I’m not going to get it. The jokes around the GameOctane chat kind of stop. It’s no longer funny. I keep getting asked for updates and ‘what I’m going to do’. 8:40 pm rolls around. I get an update. The package is shipped and I can expect it from March 3rd to March 7th. What?…WHAT?! I had to put my kid to bed before I hopped back on with Amazon because he needed some sleep. Here is that chat transcript:

09:34 PM PST Marlyn(Amazon): Hello, my name is Marlyn. Nice to meet you Jason. Thank you for being a Prime member.

I’m sorry you haven’t received your order yet. I’d be happy to look into this for you and see what we can do.

09:34 PM PST Jason Germino: Hi Marlyn
09:35 PM PST Jason Germino: Im sure this isnt the first complaint about this tonight
09:35 PM PST Marlyn: May I have the order number please?
09:35 PM PST Jason Germino: 111-5551663-6621848
09:36 PM PST Jason Germino: 111-5488745-8497036
09:36 PM PST Marlyn: Are this theNintendo Switch and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild right?
09:37 PM PST Jason Germino: Yes
The shipment looks to include other incomplete orders as well
09:37 PM PST Marlyn: Thanks.
09:40 PM PST Marlyn: Upon checking here in my end. Your item will arrive on March 6, 2017.
09:40 PM PST Jason Germino: Unacceptable
Completely Unacceptable
When the promise on both orders said March 3rd
And I get promised twice today that it will be here by 8pm
I ordered this in January
09:41 PM PST Marlyn: I am sorry that about this matter Jason. It seems that there is a problem for this.
09:41 PM PST Jason Germino: I could have been told days ago that this would be late
09:41 PM PST Marlyn: Our retail team is investigating this now.
09:41 PM PST Jason Germino: Not at 8:45pm 45 minutes after the guaranteed time
09:42 PM PST Marlyn: Please extend your patient about this.I will make sure that the items will arrived on the expected date Jason.
09:42 PM PST Jason Germino: The expected date was an hour and 40 minutes ago
09:43 PM PST Marlyn: I do apologize for this. It will not arrive by today, but I am sure that this will be there on March 6, 2017.
If I relate it to myself I can completely understand how frustrating and annoying the situation can be when something like this happens but believe us it was never our intention.
Rest assured that I will forward this issue to our management and make sure that I’ll leave this important feedback noted in your account.
09:44 PM PST Jason Germino: But I am not the only one affected
This whole launch was a disaster for amazon
09:44 PM PST Marlyn: I know that, we are now investigating this issue. And we are doing our best to fix this.
09:44 PM PST Jason Germino: Getting it on the 6th isnt going to do me any good
09:45 PM PST Jason Germino: I lost business and had to turn people away tonight
09:45 PM PST Marlyn: We pride ourselves in ensuring that all of our customers receive timely, efficient service and a stress-free shopping experience. Your patronage is greatly appreciated. We were unable to provide you with this level of service for your very important order, and for this, I am truly sorry
09:45 PM PST Jason Germino: And now this whole weekend Im losing money because this turned into a 4 day shipping fiasco
09:46 PM PST Marlyn: ​​I’m sorry for any inconvenience caused. I completely understand your disappointment. That’s definitely not what we want our
customers to experience.

09:46 PM PST Jason Germino: Instead of having people say it will for sure be here at 8pm
When its clearly not. Thats the biggest issue
I could have tried to get this product somewhere else
09:46 PM PST Marlyn: I can completely understand how frustrating and annoying the situation can be when something like this happens but believe us it was never our intention. We try our level best to provide convenient and stress free shopping to our customers but in this case we haven’t met the standard.

09:47 PM PST Jason Germino: So to fix the situation
I just be patient and wait another 3 days
09:48 PM PST Marlyn: Our retail team is doing that right now.
09:49 PM PST Jason Germino: Is there an estimate when something will be said?
Because as of right now, Im done with preordering
09:50 PM PST Marlyn: If this will be fix, we will contacted you automatically give you an information becomes available and we are making sure that you will receive this as soon as possible.
09:51 PM PST Jason Germino: Im sorry, im not upset at you
This whole situation just doesn’t make sense
09:51 PM PST Marlyn: Please do accept my sincere apologies about this matter.
09:52 PM PST Jason Germino: You dont have to apologize
09:52 PM PST Marlyn: I understand your concern and I know my apologies will not cover all the inconvenience this has caused you. I will take note of your feedback and rest assured that I will forward it to the appropriate department.
09:52 PM PST Jason Germino: It’s nothing you did. I just don’t understand why nothing was said when there was clearly an issue
09:53 PM PST Marlyn: I have been working for Amazon for quite a time already. Believe me, I will be more than happy if I’ll be able to resolve this matter for you as this is the very essence of our customer service.
09:53 PM PST Jason Germino: There really isn’t a way to resolve it
09:54 PM PST Jason Germino: I have to wait until Monday
09:54 PM PST Marlyn: They are now fixing this Jason. I am sure of that.
09:54 PM PST Jason Germino: I hope so
09:55 PM PST Marlyn: I want to make sure I have covered all of your concerns, please let me know if there is anything else I can help you with today.

09:55 PM PST Jason Germino: But I guess that’s it
Nope, I’ll just have to wait for an answer from Corporate
I’m sorry again
I hope you don’t get beat up by more of this issue
09:55 PM PST Marlyn: No need to ask sorry Jason. Please let me know if there is anything else I can help you with today.
09:56 PM PST Jason Germino: No that will be all
Thank you
09:57 PM PST Marlyn: Thank you very much for your time and patience. I really appreciate you gave me the chance to help you out with this. Again my name is Marlyn. Thank you for contacting Amazon. Please make sure to click on the “End Chat” to close this window.​
09:58 PM PST Jason Germino: Thank you have a good night

I tried not getting angry, but I was getting no answers. I apologized to Marlyn because I know this wasn’t her fault. But I still have no updates besides oh hey its out of our hands now. Amazon hasn’t said anything about the issue and is tight lipped. I understand shit happens. I worked in retail almost 10 years. But here’s what pisses me off:

Amazon boasted through their Amazon Games twitter feed that Switches were available in their bookstores and on Amazon Now. (Amazon Now is a service where you get the product within the hour or so. It’s like Uber for Amazon). These people were able to go into the store, or order it on launch day and still get their Nintendo Switch. Either handed to them…or delivered. But fuck the customers that ordered it almost two months ago.

Also Amazon has been completely silent. No apology, besides from the poor chat representative, which I legitimately felt bad for, I apologized but I know they’re some out there that just blew up and were rude to them. I just want an admittance of a fuck up. Even a, “Hey look we screwed this up big time. Bare with us as we figure out what happened and how to fix this.” That shows that they care and want to do something. Being silent on social media for 24 hours…is not supportive, and its not going to get people to want to order extremely rare day one items. Hell even Nintendo could be like look you’re getting less units because you clearly cant handle a launch and ruined our launch for OUR customers.

Yes I am a little upset still at the whole situation. Why wouldn’t I be. I missed out on the latest console launch in a couple of years. I still haven’t heard anything and I am still getting texts from Amazon saying your product shipped and will be delivered Fri, Mar 03. That is not a joke. I just got one 7 minutes ago stating this. So if you are enjoying the Nintendo Switch. I am glad, seriously I am. I love seeing everyone’s screenshots and the happiness they are getting. For the ones in the boat like me. I’m sorry, we got fucked. I’ll be sure to keep everyone updated if we hear from Amazon. Please let me know if you hear something as well. If you’ve been affected please post a comment below or on our social media. Especially if you’ve heard of something different than I have.

Thanks for reading my rant.

Leave a reply »

  • Alan Meddley
    March 4, 2017 at 8:11 am

    I am hearing your frustration echoed by friends, family, reddit, and many other journalist outlets. Huge, HUGE fail by Amazon and they have said nothing about this My brother had four or five interactions with Amazon yesterday were one was did not care at all, like at all, she just wanted him off the phone (most likely one of many interactions she had regarding this debacle) and the others expressed their apologies but what can they do? They are just screen jockies really and cannot effect change.

    My brother got like 3 extra months for Amazon Prime but what is that going to do to keep the frustration down? “oh thank you, you lost my package but I get to use your crap service for another three months. Gee thanks!”

    Sorry Jason, this really sucks. Hope you and many others get your Switches soon and enjoy Zelda!


  • Dennis B
    March 4, 2017 at 8:13 am

    I’m in the same boat. First day pre-order on Switch and Zelda SE. Mid-week promises of a Friday delivery from customer service. Items shifted to “preparing to ship” on Thursday morning, and stayed that way until early Saturday. The status is now “shipping today” but Amazon will neither confirm nor deny that the package is shipping today (Saturday). New estimated delivery date is Tuesday. A friend in the same neighbourhood ordered after me and received everything Friday morning before noon.


    • March 4, 2017 at 8:26 am

      Ugh a Zelda SE even? Sorry Dennis. I think mine is slated for Monday now. I think what didn’t help is they tried to combine multiple orders of mine. Now sure if that’s the case for everyone. Thanks for reading. Sorry your in the same boat though.


  • DukeKnowhere
    March 4, 2017 at 10:43 am

    How does Amazon stay in business like this. Emily and I have had multiple issues with shipping with them over the years and the price of prime seems to be going up. I’m shocked that they haven’t said anything about it. I have not ordered one but after this I plan to go into a store somewhere when I’m ready to pick one up. Sorry to hear about everyone’s misfortune, hopefully Jason you will get it Monday and that will ease the frustration a bit.


  • March 5, 2017 at 2:43 am

    Glad (not really) that I wasn’t the only one wondering why my copy of Zelda hadn’t had a status update on Thursday. Then come Friday, your shipment will arrive on 3/6/2017…. really Amazon? Thanks for the disappointing update.


    • March 5, 2017 at 7:20 am

      Don’t worry, we’re in this together. I’m still waiting for an Amazon response. Supposedly someone got $100 back from them from the console screw up. Not sure if that’s true though…I got nothing besides ‘extend your patience’


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