With a lockdown of the UK slated for later this week, video game retailers are warning customers that it will be highly unlikely to obtain an Xbox Series X/S or a PlayStation 5 without an existing pre-order.
A story on VGC reports that GAME, Smyths, and Argos are taking to Twitter and informing customers about their plans as the lockdown approaches. GAME indicated, "We do not have confirmation that we will have stock on launch day for customers that don't have a pre-order. We recommend checking the website for updates to avoid disappointment and unnecessary travel to store." GAME is also recommending Xbox customers to pre-purchase their orders in-store before Wednesday night.
Smyths has indicated that they will not be accepting any cash transactions for paying off the balance of pre-orders. Argos, meanwhile, has reminded customers that a delivery option is available for their pre-orders. All of the retailers involved have also stated that a collection service will be available for those customers who have pre-ordered, with GAME laying out a window of 8AM to 2PM GMT.
The lockdown measures in the UK are intended to run between November 5 and December 2, though extensions may be added as necessary. All non-essential retailers have been ordered to close, which does cover video game stores. The Xbox Series X/S is scheduled for a November 10 launch in the UK and the PS5 launch is scheduled for November 19.
Food For Thought
While physical locations are closed, it seems at least one retailer (Argos) is making plans to keep delivery services open, though how exactly they're doing that is a question. While it's going to be a tremendous inconvenience for gamers, it might inadvertently help out retailers in the long term, particularly if they can get more stock laid in for rapid distribution once the lockdown ends. In the short term, though, it's going to be a long month.