Indeed it is, my friends. Indeed it is.
The short of it: Amazon.com has screwed the pooch on this one so badly that...that...I JUST DON'T KNOW. Sit back and let me tell you the saddest and most boring tale ever told: that of a huge Mass Effect nerd who is not currently playing Mass Effect 3 (me).
No really, it's boring- you've been warned.
Way back in June- June! JUNE! JUUUUUUUUNNNNNE!- I spotted the ME3 Collector's Edition on Amazon and immediately pre-ordered. Into my cart it went! Completed the sale I did! Waiting I began! Heck, the game may have still had a tentative 2011 release date at the time, but I did not care. BioWare stated that the CE would be limited in quantity, but I did not care. My order was placed as early as could be. When the time came, Amazon would charge my card and send my game. Hooray!
Release day eventually began to draw near, and I thought "Hmm. I will check and see if Amazon is offering release-day shipping/arrival for pre-orders. That was what I chose when I pre-ordered Skyrim and verily, I would like to receive Mass Effect 3 on March 6." So I checked, and there was no option. Okay, I could wait a couple of days I GUESS.
Yesterday- the day before the US launch!- I checked my order. Still open, with an estimated delivery date of March 17th. Whaaaaa? That seemed...excessive. I clicked on the actual product, and found this message on the screen:
Due to high demand (and possibly the imminent Reaper invasion), we have unfortunately run out of our pre-order allocation for Mass Effect 3 - Collector's Edition. We are looking to secure additional allocation from the publisher and will update this page if that occurs. Please note -- if you have already pre-ordered this edition -- do not cancel as you may not be able to re-order.I figured YEAH, but I pre-ordered in JUNE, mofos, so mine should be, like, the first one out the door.
This morning, I woke up with an email giving me a code for my Amazon pre-order bonus DLC- some assault rifle or something. Yay! The game must be in transit! I checked Amazon. Order is still open, delivery estimated- March 17. I checked my bank account- the amount is "pending", but has essentially been taken out of my account.
I call around town, figuring I'll buy one, then when the Amazon one arrives I'll return it. No dice- it's sold out everywhere.
I poke around yon Internette, seeing if anyone else had any issues. I found a forum where someone mentioned Amazon being sold out, and another person responded with a "nuh uh, click this"- and it was a link to the same product on a different Amazon page. Add to cart! Just like any other new product that is in stock.
So, I immediately bought it and opted for 1-day shipping...though I still didn't cancel the other order, figuring better safe than sorry. Another pending debit on my bank account appeared...and the item is now "expected in stock" on the 8th, and I should have it on the 9th. The original item page is still up, and the corresponding order is still listed for delivery on the 17th.
I just went to check Amazon again on a lark (about three hours after I placed my second order), and I guess it's officially "sold out", now. The Collector's Edition is listed as being available only from other sellers, and it's already $130.
Will I get a Collector's Edition in the mail on Friday, or not? Will I get another copy a week later? Or will I get a cancellation from Amazon with a ""Sorry, sold out"? I have no clue and it's fairly infuriating. Not only because...you know...I really want to be playing the game right now, but because fuck you, Amazon.