Ron Palmisano, the owner of Galactic Goods Cards and Comics in Kenner, Louisiana, was prompted by the unavailability of Yu-Gi-Oh to send us this comment, comparing it to the early days of Pokemon (see 'Fred and Sue Swayne of Infinity Entertainment on Yu-Gi-Oh' and 'Eckman of Classic Cards and Comics on Yu-Gi-Oh' for earlier comments on this issue and 'Yu-Gi-Oh Is White Hot' for our article on the topic):
My name is Ron Palmisano and I am the owner/operator of Galactic Goods Cards and Comics in Kenner, La. In reference to Yu-Gi-Oh, it's the next 'Pokemon.' Upper Deck is creating the same shortages in Hobby Shops that Wizards of the Coast did by selling most of their product to the retail giants. Some of my customers have already quit because of the price and I've had to turn others away because I refuse to buy them in the secondary market for nearly $6 each. The higher prices/shortages result in a weakened customer base in the hobby shops. This makes it difficult to develop a long-term customer base for this product. When the retail giant drops the product (as with Pokemon), suddenly there is a dramatic drop in the product sales. As I understand, currently, Pokemon sales have dropped drastically. If the hobby shops had been able to develop a larger customer base the drop probably wouldn't have been as steep. Now Hasbro is paying the price because Wizards of the Coast shorted the hobby shops in favor of the giant retailers. So, Upper Deck, do you want a quick in and out with Yu-Gi-Oh or do you want to develop long-term customers with the Hobby shops. The choice is up to you. Go the way of Pokemon or take a chance and develop the game in hobby shops.