When conflicting demands occur I look for ways to provide a win-win situation. I only wish Blizzard would do the same when it comes to their midnight launches on a Monday night/Tuesday morning and allowing retailers to sell boxed copies of the game prior to the launch date.
Let me explain the issue. I’m a bit (OK maybe a lot) of a WoW fan, I like to be there first when the big in game stuff happens, I may not kill the big bads in world first or server first time-scales but I like to get my ass in the door of the new content when it happens. Blizzard loves faithful players like me.
Because of my love of the games, I buy the Collector’s Edition too, not because I want the pet (or the mount in Pandacraft) but I like the big box on my shelf, the artwork book and the soundtrack and the DVD too. Therefore when they announced the launch and the CE I pre-ordered the boxed version on the day. I was, what we English call “keen as Mustard”. I wasn’t able to get what I wanted digitally direct from Blizzard.
My usual game provider, ShopTo.net
, are great at getting games to their customers the day before big releases (I think Pandacraft qualifies as a big release) and for Cataclysm they had dispatched my boxed CE on Friday December 3rd 2010 and it arrived late-afternoon on Monday 6th December 2010. Awesome! Fast forward to 2012 and they didn’t dispatch my order last Friday, I have been checking all weekend and my pre-order is still that a pre-oder. No dispatch time or anything. This morning I checked expecting to see that it was dispatched already and it wasn’t. It is now 15 hours before the midnight launch I want to be experiencing so I call ShopTo
, they advise they have not been allowed to dispatch until today which means I will get my pre-ordered boxed Collector’s Edition “sometime tomorrow” Which most likely means late afternoon tomorrow.
This means this WoW fanboi will have missed the midnight launch excitement, leveling through content with my friends (who all slacked and bought the digital copy) and all the fun that goes with it.
I’m not a happy, in fact you could say I’m a sad panda, heck I can’t be a sad panda cos I have no panda!
There is a solution for me though, I can buy the digital verion and then upgrade my account. Great! Except that my £60/€70/$80 Collector’s Edition will now cost me an extra £30/€35/$40. Sure there is a chance that I will get a replacement key for a standard account when I upgrade, but I have an account I don’t need a 2nd key.
What would be great is if Blizzard changed the system a bit and used one of the following solutions:
- Credit me with £30/€35/$40 worth of gametime when I upgrade to a CE account if I buy the standard edition from the Blizzard Store;
- Supply companies selling pre-orders of the game a code that they can pass onto their customers that allows 48 hours of upgrade to an account (not a subscription);
This has put a real downer on the start of the expansion for me lets hope Blizz learns from the experience this time.