Last weekend pre-orders for the 32GB Deluxe Wii U were close to being sold out nationwide. Over the course of this past week it appears that the same thing is happening to the 8GB Basic model. To deal with the shortages some retailers have started waiting lists, others are taking advantage of the situation using creative bundling tactics.
GameStop is currently sold out of pre-orders for both Wii U models and has started a waiting list for their PowerUp Rewards members. The system will notify customers by phone or email when the retailer has systems in stock after the November 18th launch. Registrations for the waiting list must be done in person, are limited to no more than two Wii U consoles, and once you get the call you have 48 hours to pay for the system(s) in full.
Toys R Us is also sold out of the Deluxe Wii U, but does appear to have some Basic pre-orders left in stock. They have chosen to take the lower road, and are requiring their customers to pre-order the Basic model bundled with Batman: Arkham City and Scribblenauts Unlimited for $419.97. That’s a discount of exactly zero dollars, and you are forced to buy those two specific games.
Granted, this bundle is far superior to the old Wii bundles that contained a bunch of plastic junk to attach to the Wiimote, but retailers forcing consumers to purchase bundles during shortages has always rubbed me the wrong way.
For the record, Best Buy is also sold out of pre-orders for both the Deluxe and Basic Wii U models, and seems content to just leave it at that.