By the time Christmas Eve draws to a close, there may not be a single amiibo hanging on a rack throughout the United States. In what we lovingly refer to as amiibogeddon, hardcore Nintendo fans and eager parents have grabbed every figure they can get their hands on, even commons like Mario, Link and Princess Peach. As for Captain Falcon, Pit and Little Mac, forget it. You’ll either have to drive several miles or more to get the last one at GameStop, or pay upwards of $50 per figure on eBay.
This was the amiibo situation at a Target located in northern New Jersey. Really? Not even a Pikachu?
What you don’t see is the lone Zelda on the floor that someone eventually purchased. Granted the scene is different from store to store, but it goes to show how popular Nintendo’s plastic figures have become. At this point, we imagine only a small percentage of shoppers use them as intended, to unlock content in games like Mario Kart 8 and Hyrule Warriors, and level them up in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U.
Instead, we continue to see posts on message boards from fellow gamers furiously rubbing off residue from carefully peeled price tags, and the occasional lucky report from someone who stumbled upon a Diddy Kong at Best Buy. One person even found a Marth at a Toys R Us in California and did not buy it, or so he or she says; we only wish we were so fortunate.
Ultimately, Nintendo found its amiibo among the list of most wanted toys this holiday season, with the sort of excitement we haven’t seen since the launch of the original Wii console in 2006. It would seem amiibogeddon will likely continue into 2015, with Wave 3 (consisting of Toon Link, Bowser and others) on the horizon, along with store exclusive amiibo like Rosalina and Shulk on the way.
Our advice? Pre-order if you still can, and if you ever see an amiibo you want at the store, buy it immediately. Remember, Marth was available November 21. Marth!