It's emerged today that UK retailer GAME will not be stocking Mario Party 9 when it's released this coming Friday. In a Nintendo statement GAME and Gamestation, which are both part of GAME Group plc., were omitted from a list of retailers where the title will be available.
At the current time the retail group doesn't have a running supply agreement with Nintendo, meaning that distribution is being negotiated on a game-by-game basis. The retailer's websites aren't currently listing the game either, meaning that this issue applies to the high street and online stores. Recent titles distributed by Nintendo, The Last Story and Tekken 3D Prime Edition, were also excluded from GAME stores.
GAME's supply problems stem from its recent credit troubles, which forced the chain to purchase stock with cash rather than credit. This has understandably curtailed its usual buying power, and recent talks with suppliers and distributors haven't been able to secure positive agreements: GAME is not stocking Mass Effect 3 or any other EA titles for March.
With all future Nintendo titles being negotiated on an individual basis it remains to be seen whether key upcoming titles such as Kid Icarus: Uprising will find their way to GAME shelves.