So I’ve been seeing a lot of listings on Ebay and Craigslist attempting to sell MadCatz new products, including the TE stick, SE stick and even the fightpads for the past month or so.
I just want to make it common knowledge, though I’m sure a lot of people already know this, that Mad Catz will not stop production of any of these items. Below is an interview from Gaming Bits with a Mad Catz representative speaking on the shortage.
Street Fighter IV was just released this week, along with the Mad Catz line of Official Street Fighter IV FightStick and FightPad controllers. While you may be able to find the game, the controllers have been tough to get, both online and in stores. A Chun-Li FightPad, which has a $39.99 MSRP, was going for as high as $149.99 through a third-party Amazon seller. There are also exorbitant prices on eBay, with the SFIV Arcade Fightstick Tournament Edition ($149.99 MSRP) going for $499.99.
Mad Catz Global PR & Communications Manager Alex Verrey responded to a few questions and tells us what’s up with the shortage and when gamers can expect to find them.
GamingBits: Will the Official Street Fighter IV FightStick be available in the future (March '09) or are there no more plans to produce them?
MadCatz: This is a common misconception. It is indeed true that the original plan was to limit the manufacture of these products to a few thousand units but after it became obvious how strong the demand was, we are now doing everything possible to increase manufacture. It is our aim to ensure that every gamer who wants a Street Fighter IV Arcade FightStick: Tournament Edition WILL be able to purchase one. Stores will be constantly replenished over the coming months. Though I have no issue with eBay or e-commerce in general, it saddens me that consumers are paying silly money with the belief that this will be their only opportunity to buy. Please be patient and stick with us (No pun intended!).
GamingBits: Could gamers expect the Official Street Fighter IV FightPads to start arriving in stores early next week?
MadCatz: FightPads are already in stores. Like all the products in the range they are proving incredibly popular so are selling out fast. Once again however, more will be coming in the weeks and months to come, please keep checking your local retailer or our webstore at www.gamesharkstore.com (or www.gamesharkstore.net in the UK).
GamingBits: I’ve heard from a fairly large retailer and a distributor that the delay was caused to holidays for the Chinese New Year. Might that have been the cause in the shortage?
MadCatz: That’s an interesting question. Chinese New Year meant that we couldn’t manufacture as many as we would have hoped once it became obvious how high the demand was, however there were many factors in play. As we use genuine Sanwa components, these parts need to be ordered from Japan. This is an exacting piece of commercial grade equipment meaning that it’s not fast, cheap or easy to manufacture to the levels we demand. Lastly, it was only when the press started hitting that retail suddenly asked for many more units than they originally planned for. As they have increased their orders so dramatically it has left us working round the clock to try and accommodate. Once again, our message is clear: We apologise for the delay but more are coming and the wait will be worth it!
GamingBits: Is there any additional information you can provide to help out the gaming community in tracking down these Mad Catz Street Fighter IV controllers?
MadCatz: I can only apologise again to all our customers. We appreciate how frustrating this is but want to reassure you all that we really are doing all we can to get more stock into the hands of the gamers. If any reputable stores are willing to take pre orders for the next shipment, we recommend you do so as demand continues to prove incredibly strong. Lastly I advise you all to check our own online store at at www.gamesharkstore.com (US) and www.gamesharkstore.net (UK) for new stock. As soon as we go live they obviously tend to sell out within hours!
Thanks for your time, we are certain you’ll agree that the end product will be well worth it!
So as you can see, they will continue to produce it as long as it is in demand. As for when the next batch is coming, this is found on the MadCatz FAQs page.
Q: Can I place a pre-order for any of the Street Fighter IV products?
A: Due to the high demand for our products, we are not accepting pre-orders for products on our store site. We are currently fulfilling orders on a first-come, first-served basis. However, our goal is to make enough for everyone who wants one. Our next product shipment is expected to arrive in late March / early April 2009. When additional product becomes available for regular purchase, we will update our store site.
Date Created: 3/6/2009 Last Updated: 3/6/2009
So there you have it. If you want a TE, rest assure that you will be able to get it but it is just a matter of when. Saddens me that people resort to buying it off of Ebay and Craigslist for double and triple its value. However, if you simply can’t wait and feel that paying extra is worth it, by all means. But if you think that this is your last chance of getting one, then no, you stand corrected.
Granted, the same people that preordered the first batch will try to preorder the second batch to try to make a profit again. So my advice is that you keep your ears open during late March on what places may have it.
And don’t get me wrong, I want a TE as bad as the next guy, but refuse to pay any price that isn’t retail for it. The funny thing is that the very people that try to make a profit will probably be the same people who will try to make a deal with you once the item is not hard to find anymore. lol Same thing happened with the Nintendo Wii and the DS lite. Just be patient and you’ll eventually get one at retail price.
Again, I know a lot of people may already know this but if it even prevents one person from spending their hard worked money on an overpriced TE, I feel this posting was worth it.