If you're hoping to get your hands on a Nintendo Switch anytime, the folks at GameStop wish you the best of luck. According to their predictions, it's probably going to be tricky to track one down in the wild for some time to come.
The folks over at IGN tuned in for the Q4 2016 earnings call for games retailer GameStop, reporting on a number of comments made by COO Tony Bartel concerning the Nintendo Switch. The console finally launched just a few weeks back and instantly flew off of store shelves. A few places have received additional shipments since, but according to Bartel they haven't stayed on store shelves for very long.
According to Tony Bartel, GameStop is expecting Switch shortages throughout the rest of 2017. Nintendo has stated that it plans to double production moving forward, but those things take time. In other words, if you were hoping to get a Switch this year, you might want to grab the next one you see hanging out on a shelf, because it's not going to linger there long enough for you to debate a purchase decision.
Now that the Switch is out the door, Nintendo has reported that 1.5 million of the units shipped during the console's first week. Not to beat a dead horse, but it's a new console from Nintendo. Had they made three million available, we feel pretty confident it would have sold through that figure, too. But while they've been pretty bad about meeting demand in the past, there were a good number of Switch consoles available at launch, so kudos on them for having a little more faith in their new console. Now comes the hard part: Getting enough games out on the console to convince more and more people to pick one up.
Speaking of games, that was another stat Tony Bartel threw around without giving the full picture. He said he was impressed with the Switch's attach rate in regards to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which was practically 1:1 with the console. If you're surprised by that fact, our question is, "what else did you expect those people to play?" Honestly, the fact that it isn't exactly 1:1 is what's surprising us. Again, who bought a Nintendo Switch and didn't pick up Zelda? Unless it was a matter of not enough copies of Zelda to match the number of consoles, we have a hard time imagining anyone thinking "Got my Swtich pre-order on lockdown along with 1-2 Switch, baby!"
In the end, we're not really surprised to hear the Switch is going to be in limited supply for quite some time. More than anything, these stats give us hope for the future of the console. If developers see Nintendo's new machine as a success, maybe we'll get more and more titles launching on the home console/portable hybrid in the coming years.