Nintendo has apologised for poor stock of its collectable Amiibo characters, claiming that is planning to bring back some out-of-stock models collectors missed out on first time around.
Part of a growing trend of tying in-game content to physical collectables which arguably began back in the days of the Barcode Battler
, Amiibos are plastic figurines with embedded near-field communications (NFC) chips designed to communicate with the Wii U Gamepad and New Nintendo 3DS family of hand-held consoles. Building on the success of the similar Skylanders and Disney Infinity franchises, Ammibos offer the ability to store data - such as high-scores or character unlocks - for transfer between consoles and to unlock in-game content within supported games. Their popularity has been high, selling more than 5.7 million figurines between June and December last year alone.
Sadly, their popularity and their availability have not been in sync. Numerous buyers have complained of poor stock of the more popular figures, with some time-limited exclusive launches ending up on the second-hand market for several times their retail price. Frustrations are running high, and Nintendo is well aware of this fact - and has apologised as a result.
'We appreciate the enthusiasm that our fans continue to show toward Amiibo. Sales for the product have exceeded our expectations. We understand how frustrating it can be at times if consumers are unable to find certain figures, and we apologise for that,
' Nintendo claimed in a post to its official Facebook
page. 'We’re trying to meet the demands of our fans and consumers by increasing the amount of Amiibo we manufacture and ship to retail. We may continue to see consumer demand outpace supply levels for certain characters at times, but we will do our best to prevent that from happening.
As well as a pledge to increase manufacturing quantities throughout the range, Nintendo has also stated that it will relaunch some of the now end-of-line figures fans missed out on first time around. 'We are constantly looking for the opportunity to reissue Amiibo ,
' the company explained, 'and are already making plans to bring back some currently out-of-stock Amiibo figures.
The company has also announced plans to launch cheaper Amiibo-compatible collectables by the end of the year, including NFC-enabled cards specifically designed for the Animal Crossing franchise.