had the privilege of interviewing Andrew McLean, Store Manager of
the Babbage's location that achieved more preorders than any other store in North America.
McLean, who had never before been involved in such a large scale
system launch, oversaw the entire GameCube presale and launch
process at this Babbage's in Natick, MA. McLean's only complaint during the night
was that, like many store customers, he very much just wanted to get
home and enjoy his own GameCube.
you could describe the GameCube launch in one word, what would
did your store go about achieving such an incredible number of
The enthusiasm of all the
employees. The fact that Nintendo showed a lot of stuff at E3.
Employees got to play the games at E3. GameCube was just easily
superior and that's what we told everyone. It was that which
helped drive the sales.
locations of your size were granted only 20-40 GameCubes for
launch. How exactly did this location manage to get 800
GameCubes on launch day?
I don't think Nintendo knew
how many we had until we already reached these levels.
Microsoft’s Xbox console launched this past Thursday. How
would you comparatively gauge demand for the two rival systems?
The demand for GameCube
easily surpasses Xbox. Not even close... We had 803 GameCube
presales, 33 Xbox presales.
has Nintendo’s assistance to Babbage's been with respect to
GameCube information and support? Is there anything you would like to
see more of from Nintendo retailer relations in the future?
I do wish they could
advertise a little more. A little more marketing would be
helpful. In store, the demo units are a little bit late. But it
all comes down to the software in the end and that's where
they're the strongest.
Nintendo’s marketing of GameCube left many questions in the
minds of industry watchers over the last few months. What are
They didn't want to hurt
sales of their current consoles like Game Boy and N64. I
think earlier advertising might have helped them. But with their
software which is so much better than everybody else's right
now, I think they're in good shape.
the buzz surrounding the launch of Xbox and GameCube
significantly impacted PS2 sales? How do you see Sony performing
this holiday season?
PS2 sales have actually picked up. I've sold a lot of PS2s in
the past few days. Metal Gear Solid - system seller right there.
A lot of other great games... Devil May Cry, Grand Theft Auto. I
see Sony doing very well. I think they have the holidays locked
GameCube games do you anticipate will be most in demand during
Super Smash Bros. will be
huge! We have more reservations for Smash than even Luigi's
forward three years, who’s number one in the console war?
That's either GameCube or
Industry watchers and critics have said that GameCube is
targeted at 'the kids'. What are your thoughts on this?
That's part of the reason
why I think PS2 could stay number one - because of the niche
that Nintendo's in. But with the Resident Evil series being
exclusive to GameCube and Eternal Darkness... I think they're
heading in the right direction. But PS2 could still have the
edge in that area.
Do the demographics of those who preordered the GameCube reflect
Yes and no. I'd say it's
almost 50/50. Tonight you see a lot of kids for the midnight
launch but I think tomorrow you're going to see see a lot of the
older people who have to work so they're not here at midnight. We
have a lot of adults that ordered too.
Rick - Editor in
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