Paula Fuge of Gnome Games in Green Bay, Wisconsin has some comments on when Upper Deck releases products to its sales channels:


I'm not usually a complainer, but... Upper Deck, what are you doing to small retailers?


We are your 'customer loyalty nurturers,' 'public relations builders,' 'product testers,' 'tournament organizers,' as well as being your customers!  Don't you  know that when you put a new release in national chain stores weeks before hobby stores are able to get them, that you are killing your best supporters?  We just want to have a fair chance at our own customer base when new products are released.  Is that too much to ask?


Gnome Games is a small hobby operation in Green Bay, WI.  We run Yu-Gi-Oh! tournaments four days a week between our two stores.  We have built up a Yu-Gi-Oh! tournament following of 280+ new players in just our first year of operation and continue to add new players weekly.  We are doing our part to grow your business, while growing our own.  Unfortunately, we are also growing the local Wal-Mart and Target CCG sales as well.  The general manager at our local Wal-Mart store has informed us that his store is now the #1 Wal-Mart in the region for Yu-Gi-Oh! sales.  Hmmm, how do you suppose that happened?


We would just like to see some fairness, Upper Deck!  Last week our local Target store began selling the new Dragon/Zombie theme decks.  By the time we get our pre-ordered, allocated shipment, our players will already have their decks!  To add injury to insult, do you know what we finally received from Upper Deck last week?  We finally got our allocated 1stt edition Rise of Destiny!!  How are we going to sell that now?  Our customers already have full sets from Wal-Mart and Target!


Then there's Shaman King.  We have also decided to boycott the new Shaman King property.  We are in solidarity with the authors of last week's articles (see 'Daniel McAbee of the Tangled Web on Shaman King Exclusive' and 'Dean Phillips of Krypton Comics on Shaman King Exclusive').  We will be putting our energies into building up our MegaMan, Duelmasters and Pokemon followings.  At least the 'street date' concept gives us a fair chance at sales!
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