Throughout 2021, there was a constant drumbeat of dire supply chain news, warning of empty shelves in stores for the holidays, and a bleak season as a result.  For the most part, those warnings turned out to be overblown, not because supply chains weren’t massively disrupted (they were), but because through planning, hard work, and a largely understanding consumer base, there was enough inventory to allow big increases in holiday sales over 2020, the first Covid year, and also over 2019, a solid (normal) year for sales.

The mitigation of supply chain issues took efforts from every tier of the distribution network.  Publishers paid big price increases to move their freight from distant manufacturing centers to market, while in the TCG business, maxed-out manufacturers shipped product in waves.

At the distribution level, not only was there a constant battle to get enough product to sell, there was also increased unpredictability.

At the retail level, multiple tools were utilized, including stocking for the holidays earlier, encouraging customers to start their shopping earlier, and substituting products when all else failed.

For the top games in five categories, see:
Top Collectible Games - Fall 2021
Top 10 Hobby Channel Board Games - Fall 2021
Top 10 Hobby Channel Card/Dice Games - Fall 2021
Top 5 Non-Collectible Miniature Lines - Fall 2021
Top 5 Roleplaying Games - Fall 2021

The full-length version of this article appeared in Internal Correspondence.  For the full-length version of this article on the ICv2 Pro site, click here.

If you are a U.S. retailer, e-mail Dennis Viau at to get your free subscription to Internal Correspondence.

ICv2 Pro subscribers have early and complete access to Internal Correspondence content here. To sign up for a free two-week trial, click here.

Digital copies (PDFs) are available instantly from your favorite DriveThru store.  To order a digital copy of ICv2's Internal Correspondence #101, click here.

For librarians and educators interested in subscribing to ICv2's Internal Correspondence, order from EBSCO (title #408-601-128) or WT Cox (title #128411).

This article first appeared in ICv2’s Internal Correspondence #101. For more on the contents of this issue, which is available to Pro subscribers, click here.