GameStop's Skylanders Action Figure Grab-Bag Shenanigans

December 2, 2011 -

GameStop has put a questionable practice in place for adults seeking to purchase single action figures for Activision's Skylanders from its web site. In case you are not familiar with Skylanders, the game features a portal peripheral that you connect to your console of choice to scan in action figures which then become playable in-game. There are 30+ action figures but apparently supply is low because Activision didn't anticipate the demand for them and the supplier is overseas.

So what is GameStop doing? If you want to buy an individual action figure you can only buy them at random. In other words, they are using a grab-bag approach to these figures where they pick which one you get. If your children already have Skylanders figures they could hypothetically end up with one they already have. And you can forget about picking out a specific action figure at all.

The same applies to the three-pack sets they are selling online.

I guess the point of this post is to warn consumers not to buy Skylanders action figures online at GameStop - unless you like getting something randomly selected.

[Note: the opinions in this post represent the author's and not the opinions of the ECA or GamePolitics.]


Comments

Re: GameStop's Skylanders Action Figure Grab-Bag Shenanigans

Or, it could be the fact that Gamestop uses a single SKU for all the single packs, and another SKU for the 3-packs. The "Hex" character is the same in the system as the "Stealth Elf" character.

A quick search shows that Best Buy doesn't let you choose a specific character, either. And neither does Target, with the exception of their exclusive "Whirlwind" character.

I hope GP journalists do a better job of their research in the future, instead of singling out a single retailer to justify their hate-boner for Gamestop.

Re: GameStop's Skylanders Action Figure Grab-Bag Shenanigans

As far as I've seen, Best Buy is the only other retailer doing that (though, of course, I haven't checked them all).  Target, near as I can tell, isn't offering the single or triple packs online (or even their exclusive, for that matter).

It's also important to note that each figure does have a unique UPC so it's pretty lame and, I feel, worth pointing out that GameStop, Best Buy and possibly others got lazy with their skus and are selling them at random.

Andrew Eisen

Re: GameStop's Skylanders Action Figure Grab-Bag Shenanigans

While on the subject of research, how short is supply, really? These things have not moved all around here. Gamestop's got a shelf full of them that's become sufficiently unpopular that there's a giant Gears of War 3 cardboard stand up in front of it, and the locally owned game store that stocked them on release day is already marking them for clearance (at the same price, but it's a trick that works) and including them in the buy 2 get 1 free weekly sales.

 
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Andrew EisenMarvel has replaced Manara on the variant covers for Thor #2 and Avengers and X-Men: AXIS #1. I hope I'm wrong but I don't think Marvel is learning the right lesson here.09/23/2014 - 6:26pm
quiknkoldI'm 7 years old, and my cousin(Also 7, maybe 8 at this time) tells me has Battletoads. its Summer Vacation. We play and play and play until finally, We won coop. Those were the days.09/23/2014 - 5:29pm
quiknkoldlets take a moment to share some gaming memories, shall we?09/23/2014 - 5:28pm
MechaTama31I buy stuff off the eshop because it gives me the convenience of a flashcart without the guilt.09/23/2014 - 5:03pm
Montewell thanks for the info Eisen; try that the next time i need something off the eshop09/23/2014 - 3:54pm
james_fudgere: MP, i've sent tech support a note - thank you :)09/23/2014 - 3:14pm
IanCNah that wasnt directed at you Andrew :)09/23/2014 - 3:00pm
Papa MidnightRe: SIEGE 2014 Keynote: oh dear...09/23/2014 - 2:44pm
MaskedPixelanteDear GP, something called "doubleverify" is causing some nasty browser issues on my end. Probably one of your ads.09/23/2014 - 2:36pm
Andrew EisenOh hell no. No, it took Nintendo a dog's age just to get to the point its competitors have been at for a while! (And it's still not there yet, in a lot of respects.)09/23/2014 - 2:26pm
IanCSame as PSN handles it, fi you are trying to say only nintendo do that.09/23/2014 - 2:23pm
Andrew EisenYou have to try to purchase something first. Pick a game, hit purchase and if your wallet doesn't have enough to cover it, you'll be given an option to "add exact funds" or something like that.09/23/2014 - 2:05pm
MonteI have seen no option for that on my 3DS; anytime i want to add funds it only gives me the option to add in denominations of $10, 20, 50 or 10009/23/2014 - 2:03pm
IanCWhat Andrew Wilson said. PSN is the same when you make a purchase over a certain price (£5 in the UK)09/23/2014 - 2:02pm
Andrew EisenNeither eShop charges sales tax either. At least in California.09/23/2014 - 2:00pm
Andrew EisenBoth Wii U and 3DS eShops allow you to add funds in the exact amount of whatever's in your shopping cart. If your game is $39.99, you can add exactly $39.99.09/23/2014 - 1:57pm
Infophile@Matthew Wilson: As I understand it, any regulations to force tax online would also set up an easy database for these stores to use, minimizing overhead.09/23/2014 - 1:30pm
MonteReally, the eshop just does next to nothing to make buying digitally advantagous for the customer. Its nice to have the game on my 3DS, but i can get more for less buying a physical copy at retail. And that's not even counting buying used09/23/2014 - 1:18pm
MonteIanC, The Eshop wallet system only lets you add funds in set denominations and the tax makes sure you no longer have round numbers so you ALWAYS loose money. A $39.99 game for instance requires you to add $50 instead of just $4009/23/2014 - 1:13pm
Matthew Wilsonbut thats just it those sites, even the small ones, sell all over the country.09/23/2014 - 11:12am
 

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