Of the 1,200 UK 3DS midnight launches, just over one-third of those will be operated by the Game Group, with 482 GAME and gamestation stores opening from tomorrow night to let gamers get their machines first.
If you're not sure about going down to a midnight event, perhaps this will change your mind: every single GAME and gamestation store will be giving away a free Nintendo 3DS console to one lucky punter. That makes nearly 500 machines given away for nothing or, in financial terms, a staggering £106,000 worth of free hardware.
Full details are below. If you're planning to visit a store at midnight, first check it's open, and take your personal music device with you as we'll be releasing a special 3DS launch episode of the Nintendo Life podcast.
We also want to see your photos, hear your stories and share your excitement tomorrow night. Tweet messages to Nintendo Life, share on the Nintendo Life Facebook page or post them right here on our very own forums.
Today, GAME and gamestation announce the full launch plans for the 3DS this Friday, March 25th.
In total, 482 GAME and gamestation stores will be open at midnight with GAME’s flagship store in Oxford Street, London hosting a special event with comedian, gamer and Nintendo fan-boy, Iain Lee joining customers for the countdown to the moment they get their hands on the world’s first 3D gaming console that doesn’t need glasses.
The Oxford Street store will give one free 3DS game to each of the first 100 people in the queue. Freebies including Nintendo t-shirts and midnight snacks will be handed out throughout the evening. The first person in the queue will also receive a free taxi ride home.
This will also happen at the special Nintendo launches at:
GAME Glasgow (Sauchiehall Street),
GAME Cardiff (St Davids),
GAME Manchester (Trafford Centre),
gamestation Birmingham (New Street)
gamestation Hull (Propsect Centre).
In addition, each of the 482 stores opening at midnight will give away a free Nintendo 3DS console to one lucky customer. Each person in the queue will be given a raffle ticket and the winner will be drawn at random on the night.
Neil Ashurst, head of UK PR for GAME said:
"Thursday night is a must-attend moment for Nintendo fans – the 3DS is a stunning piece of gaming tech which impresses everyone who plays it. We are opening 482 of our stores at midnight to allow our customers to be the first to get their hands on it. Whatever store they go to, we will be offering a free 3DS console for one lucky individual so it’s definitely worth turning up for midnight!"