I'm delaying "Battle Styles" preorders until after the New Year
Over the last two quarters of 2020, Pokemon has been releasing hot new products at a breakneck pace — Champion’s Path, Ultra Prism reprints, Unbroken Bonds reprints, Hidden Fates reprints, Unified Minds reprints, Vivid Voltage, Shining Fates — and with a few more standard sets on deck, the 25th anniversary set, and rumors of other reprints coming in 2021, it doesn’t seem like things slowing down any time soon.
I’ve chatted with a number of you over the last few months and it seems like there is a growing consensus of simultaneously being incredibly excited for all these awesome releases and also being completely overwhelmed by them.
This feeling is amplified when we see the effects of scalping in the secondary market (increased prices and scarcity) bleeding into the primary market. It feels like scalpers have unlimited time and money to snatch up product and resell for significantly more than MSRP, which can be discouraging and down right infuriating for regular players and collectors with normal budgets and time constraints. Anybody with kids and/or a demanding job(s) knows what I’m talking about.
Pokemon appears to have noticed this, which would explain the recent spate of Sun and Moon-era reprints, but that added production burden coupled with Covid seems to be redlining their manufacturing capacity. For example, the initial run of Champion’s Path ETBs was split into two waves, both Darkness Ablaze and Vivid Voltage were released in two waves, and the Ultra Premium Collections are still heavily delayed a month after their anticipated release date. The increased supply is certainly helping to tamp down the skyrocketing prices, but the effect it’s having on regular release cycles isn’t helping with the perception that regular people can’t get regular products at regular prices.
With all this in mind, I’ve decided to delay the Battle Styles preorders a bit. In the end, having you all pay for a preorder now or in ~3 weeks doesn’t change the fact that my preorders aren’t due to distributors until late January. Since we have the time to delay preorders, why not lean into that and take a breather? The preorders will still be there, but in the mean time you can rest easy knowing that scalpers aren’t getting the jump on you (at least at my store) and you can give your bank accounts some time to cool down. :)
Preorders will be announced via the email blast and will happen the week of January 4, 2021.