Oh no, it's happened again! Following on from Walmart selling The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening amiibo ahead of schedule, the US retail giant has now reportedly broken the street date for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - Complete Edition.
The Switch version is actually due out on 15th October in this particular region, but it seems one Reddit user has already got their hands on this epic adventure, as you can see in the image above. Here's what this lucky customer had to say about it:
Got mine at a Wal-Mart in the PAC NW today. $49.94. Was stocked on the bottom of the display case with overstock. The rep seemed surprised to see it.
The receipt simply shows the game as "NSW GAME". I'm not sure if that's how Walmart tracks titles in their system, but it seemed rather bland.
As previously noted, this upcoming release includes the game box, game card, The Witcher Universe Compendium, a map and stickers. The game card will also include the two expansions – Hearts of Stone and Blood and Wine – and 16 DLC items.
Walmart was also recently caught out last month for selling Switch Lite weeks before the official launch of the system.
Have you had any luck getting a copy of The Witcher 3 on Switch ahead of its release? Do you plan to purchase this game when it officially launches? Tell us below.
Of course it's Walmart. Someone at Nintendo needs to smack them upside the head. And just wait: someone somewhere is gonna break street date for Sword and Shield and leak EVERYTHING...
@Shepdawg1 I agree. Someone needs to start being punished for this.
Lucky guy having it playable
Someone needs to kick Walmart's ass, this seems to be happening over and over
Oh noes, not selling a video game early, that's almost as bad as tearing the tag off a mattress.
Seriously, it's a video game, it getting out 10 days early is not a big deal.
It's Walmart, it's not like Nintendo can do anything to punish them. They're too big and a threat of ending that retail partnership would be met with "lol."
I never understood the whole breaking a street date thing. So what if somebody buys something a couple days early? The company still gets their money. Besides the witcher 3 is an old game now. Practically everybody who games has already played it. Big woop!
I remember once a Harry potter book was released ahead of schedule and the author about threw a fit! What she doesn't wanna get paid ahead of time? Still boggles the mind.
From what I understand... there are no official laws governing street dates, but there is a contract between publisher and retailer, which contains clauses allowing the publisher to fine the retailer if the street date is broken? In that case, Walmart would not be able to "lol it off", and there's no point in the clause existing if Nintendo aren't willing to execute it. Especially as, in this instance, the street date has been broken by an entire week!
Everybody in the comments is like Nintendo this, nintendo that. Did I miss something? Is nintendo publishing this title?
I gonna buy the newspaper at walmart for next weeks lotto numbers.
So a game that came out in 2015 is coming out next week, but you can buy it today.
Theres a reason why there are release dates. It is to give everyone a fair start. It also has to do with spoilers and building hype.
Played a demo of it yesterday on the Nintendo stand. I was a bit disappointed, even though I didn’t expected too much graphics. From what I’ve seen it played smooth in terms of frame rate in handheld mode, but the graphics were so blurry. Played Skyrim afterwards for comparison and that looked less blurry to me. Still not going to cancel my preorder, because it still felt like a solid game
@Zeldafan79 I see what you mean, but for Harry Potter it’d a problem if major story beats were spoiled before fans were officially allowed to read it for themselves.
Witcher 3 is less of a problem. But in the end it’s bad business because it’s unpredictable. Companies want to be in control of their own products.
Snape kills Dumbledore
A store breaking street dates is nothing to be excited about. I'm more interested in how this version of the Witcher looks and plays.
Release dates are a matter of keeping the sales fair between retailers.
It's literally impossible to make sure every store get the game the same day, so having a release date allow to send the game in the stores pretty early without risking to cause some crazy competition based on deliveries and a lot of other impossible to predict issues (not to mention how this would favorite larger business with a much more effective distribution chain).
Taking Walmart as an example, it's easy to see how their recent early sales may have caused more then a few fans to cancel their preorders elsewhere just to get their new hyped game or console early.
Plus if this trend goes on then Wallmart will see a spikes in preorders, stealing customers from all the other sellers that are following the rules.
For us gamers may not sound like a big deal to get a game a little early (if anything is even a bless), but it's definitely a problem for stores trying to sell the game.
......but Nintendo will go on supplying WallMart with games, so if they don't care why should we. 🙃
I think i have a better understanding now. Thanks for the info!
@Shepdawg1 I remember when Tesco broke the UK release date for X/Y days beforehand, then everyone else went and did as well. ORAS and Sun/Moon were all a good week behind the rest of the world after that XD
Oh I wish I could get my hands on this now, I go on holiday on the 14th for two weeks so will be a long wait for me
It's probably not deliberate on Walmart's part. This is just what happens when you pay your workers the lowest legal wage. Why should they care about putting their best effort for a job where the only positive thing they can say is "it's better than being unemployed?"
If Walmart wants good staff that does their job well, they need to actually pay them a decent wage. I'd say I hope this gets Walmart in trouble, but odds are it would just be those workers thrown under the bus.
It's going to be hard for Nintendo to argue with one of the biggest outlets which sells its products.
A bit of a catch 22 to say the least.
Here in the UK this rarely happens.
The only time it happened to me was when I knew the guy at the local game shop.
Literally would get everything two weeks early.
Remember having Halo 2 a few weeks before it came out.
As it happens he had to close down, as the majority of people don't want to to support local shops.
They were happy going to Game, where you get ripped off every purchase.
Having looked at some of the latest gameplay, I’ve pre-ordered. There’s a new video floating about of it being played on a Nintendo Switch Lite and it looks really decent.
If I can deal with Xenoblade at 360p then this will be fine!
I am not being funny here, but I could not care less if a store has broke a street date.
It's just reflecting the mindset of the time in which the game is set, we have all moved on from this now, it wouldn't stop me buying the game though.
Anyone found this for preorder in UK cheaper than £49.99??
IT COMES WITH STICKERS!?
I will pre-order it tomorrow!
I'm surprised they found am employee at all to help them open the case. You've generally got one associate running three separate departments a lot of the time and one of many reasons why I've never been a fan of shopping there in general.
How do you know it does?! You must have researched the game. I guess you aren't as squeaky clean as you like to pretend eh?
@EvaEeveeFan Does it really though? Honest question. I haven't played the game but I've read the first three Witcher books, and in them the women are super powerful and very much empowered. You aren't reading the story from their perspective, you're reading a story about Geralt, but Geralt is mostly a guy who is very, very good at fighting and would do literally anything to help a couple of women who could pretty much shred him with the blink of an eye. He's more like their pet than anything else.
He has a lot of sex in the books, but it's not on his terms, it's on theirs. And there are women all around who see and treat Geralt as a sex object.
Maybe the game is totally different, I don't really know yet.
@EvaEeveeFan because other people with other tastes exist in the world, and plenty of them (myself included) cannot wait to play this game on this console.
It’s not as if there were few non-violent family-friendly games on Switch, so please go on and enjoy the games you like without telling Nintendo and other players what games are allowed by you.
Yeah I love Nintendo's games and history but I'm not licking their heels. Y'all need to calm down, it's not even a Nintendo IP, breaking street date 10 days early o noes. It's not like you can't play it on 3 other platforms. SMH.
I work for a Walmart owned company here in the uk and they do not care about the staff at all and nothing is ever good enough.
The game was on the shelf but at the end of the day the so called managers should have seen it and withdrawn it from sale.
Once one company beaks the date on a game release then everyone should. Why should the other companies lose out on sales.
I’m really excited for this. It’s gonna be my next big game after Dragon Quest XI S
Walmart just dont care no more and if it was me I'd be refueed the game so idk how people are getting this legally
@Shepdawg1 They did it to ASDA, (UK Walmart) and they refused to sell Nintendo products for half a year.
@Stocksy Base.com and The Game Collection are £42.85. Smyths is £44.99.
I bought the Link's awakening Amiibo at Walmart 8 days early @AstralSoul13. All i did was get it off the rack and buy it with the self checkout. There was no lock out or inside help.
@SHULZ021 that's all I could think about too! LoL!
@EvaEeveeFan How about treating others people's tastes like you want them to treat yours? If I remember what you wrote correctly, I can agree it did not need to be deleted.
But if you want people to be friendly, don't go to articles about games you know is not for you, just to speak ill about the game its about. That behavoir is just souring the experience for those who do like the game its about.
@benchan You think there are millions of gamers roving stores to find any that accidentally sell a single copy early? You're barking mad.
They might have deleted your comment because it has little to do with what the article is about, it's about a broken street date not the ethics or lack of within the game, and even this is a little blurred if you accept other peoples opinions that it's not quite the way you say it is.
You are lying about being a girl with autism and it is absolutely disgraceful.
You should be banned outright.
What do you expect from Walmart employees? Most of them can't read I reckon.
No Walmart! No!!!!
I can get a pre-order of CyberPunk ($45) and Witcher 3 with all the DLC ($15) for the same price as pre-ordering this on Switch.
Even Dragon Quest XI got a Day 1 price reduction to $49 in the US. Great game - insane pricing.
Walmart just trying to lock-in sales - they so big, no publisher will say anything.
On base.com it's 42.85
Weren't the purple and green Joy-Cons supposed to come out on October 4? Because I saw them in the case with the other colors last Wednesday at Walmart. I was tempted. lol
I wonder how long this will last until either Nintendo steps in and does something or the competition shuts down. Walmart's been selling Switch stuff (games and amiibo, maybe other stuff too) early and cheaper since summer and that has to be having some sort of impact on the market.
Man, that physical package is sweet, and that's the standard edition! Great job CDPR. 👍
As for breaking the street date, in this instance, I don't think Nintendo has much control over street dates on a game they didn't even publish.
@StevenG In this case, yeah. It's a port of an already released game, big deal. It's more when it's brand new big name titles and everyone has to avoid the internet for a few weeks as a result that it's a pain.
I post this every time I see this but Walmart Canada has a system in place that won't let you sell a game early no matter how you much you try to force it through. It's tied to the automatic registration.
In this case however it says NSW game which it shouldn't show for any game. The worker might have entered a price and description which means the game isn't registered. Which also means they probably knew they shouldn't sell it if they actually work in electronics.
If they did know they just wanted the customer out of their face and probably put any remaining copies out back. Customers are annoying to begin with and you would not believe the lengths they go to when they are told they can't buy something including violence. The worker doesn't get paid enough for that crap.
The register should have stopped the sale. I’ve experienced this. The Wal-Mart in my town looks terrible, and comes with a mixed bag of employees. Some people are clean, pleasant and care about their job. Some... I would have sent home if I was their boss.
I know where I'm going to get Animal Crossing: New Horizons
It’s really crappy... but I’m kiiiiind if glad to see what’s in the package. I’m very satisfied
Cannot wait to get my own hands on this (finally)
@SHULZ021 I dont thik it's playable. I happened to obtain an other game cart before release but it was unplayable until the official e-shop release.
Whats the big deal?
I remember back in the good ol' days when one retailer broke the street date, the rules allowed every other area store to break the street date.
@Shepdawg1 Well, if people are dumb enough to ask for Sword and Shield ahead of release and then take it online before release date, they'll get caught in another 5k+ ban sweep.
(I'm not believing one can know enough about Pokemon and setting up online and not be aware enough of street date. Especially if setting up accounts on official Pokemon sites is part, there's no way you're going to be into that and not visiting some manner of Pokemon forum or fansites where that information would be spread.)
@Heavyarms55 It's Walmart. As much money as Pokemon Sword/Shield will probably make in sales, is about how much Nintendo would have to fine them for breaking street date for it to make a dent in their wallet.
And even then it's probably not up to Nintendo to decide punitive damage for the infraction, but the court system. And I'm doubting the court is going to say "they sold a video game a week early" is a case worth their time.
@StevenG Well it is against policy its like if gamestop sold pokemon sword and shield 3 months before its release. They need to be slapped with whatever fine Nintendo has in place. This isnt the first time ive heard about this from Walmart.
@KingMike Nintendo is a company, not a government, they can't fine anyone. They could try taking Walmart to court, but Walmart is a far larger company than Nintendo, they could take whatever penalty the court ruled and laugh it off. Further, if Walmart decided to pull Nintendo from their shelves, Nintendo would lose WAY more money than Walmart would.
@Abes3 Careful, your envy is showing. But really, I doubt Nintendo (or any other AAA game company) cares much about errant minimum-wage earners unwittingly stocking shelves early of games that aren't officially released yet. The companies don't lose money over it, and it's terrible if they actually asked Walmart to punish lowly-paid workers for something that ultimately didn't hurt anyone at all and was probably an unintentional mistake. Realize that only a subset of the population knows (or cares) that Witcher 3 for Switch shouldn't be out this early.
If you're so envious about other people getting it early, you're free to order that item from whichever Walmart branch that was.
@Abes3 i highly doubt a company like Walmart who've had a 35+ year old relationship with Nintendo would go ahead and do this without first discussing it with Nintendo.
Management obviously okay'd this to the workers.
These are big businesses. Not some small shop doing dodgy deals on the side for a quick buck.
People really need to wake up a bit.
So uh... how does it play?
Is that even legal? How it keep happening?!
@StevenG well to be fair it's spoiler leaks people are concerned about. There should be unwritten rule if you're lucky enough to get the game early then NO SPOILER LEAKS!
@JaxonH Same. First Astral Chain, then Dragon Quest XI, and then The Witcher 3.
What a time to be a Switch owner!
@Stocksy The Game Collection or Base.com got cheaper prices. I pre-ordered mine from game collection a months so ago when they had 10% off everything including pre-order. got mine for just over £40. hope it helps 👍
Totally agree with you on the deletion of your comment, it's not like you insulted anybody or used inapropriate language.
@dumdum I don't live in the state's, and having been around as long as the commercial internet, I never want to step foot in a Walmart lol.
And yes I'm jealous of early access!!! Hence my adult tantrum
@Nerdy_Gameber Spoliers for a nearly 5 year old game?
@Tantani Contracts are civil not criminal.
@StevenG Not for this game so much haha more for the other games, e.g. pokemon sword and shield because let's face it Walmart will release it early.
@Nerdy_Gameber Spoilers for pokemon? I got those right here, you will capture small creatures, force them to fight for your own amusement or gain and generally treat them like property.
@StevenG aside from the fact some of them are pretty big.... and now all of them can become 10 stories tall.... pretty accurate
Always hoped to be one of those lucky people that gets a game way early, but I've never gotten a game prior to release date. Though nowadays with the buggy mess that a lot of games come out as that need day one patches sometimes it may not be as good to get it right away.
@JEM $15 for the complete edition on the PS4. The Switch is great and all but these expensive ports are not great values, regardless of portability
@Shepdawg1"of course it's Walmart" Let's burn a few million employees because of a few knuckleheads.
@EvaEeveeFan ok, if you wish to know: your comment was completely off topic and only served as "flamebait". Which is starting to become a bit of an annoyance.
It would be awesome if you could stop that behavior.
@JasmineDragon I haven't read all of the books, but the writing is very close. You'd almost think Andrzej Sapkowski also wrote the script for the games, and I mean that in a flattering way. I wouldn't say the Geralt is treated like a ''pet'' in the games, but more so that he really cares about the handful of people he does know. Even though that's not always obvious from his dialogue alone lol.
@Octane Good to know, thanks for sharing your thoughts. I'm not a superfan of the books but I did like the writing, and the world is an interesting one.
Saying he is treated like a pet may be a bit of an exaggeration on my part, but in the books he definitely doesn't treat women like sex objects, more the other way around. One scene sticks in my memory where he is totally channeling Mata Hari and playing a dumb sexy thing to get some lustful witches to reveal their plans. It was pretty refreshing, since it usually goes the other way around in fantasy books. One of the things I liked about the series.
@Heavyarms55 I imagine that they put honoring street dates into some sort of legal contract they write when Nintendo sells its merchandise to Walmart (or GameStop, Best Buy, Target or whoever) but, as you said, whatever damages they could claim as a result of the breach of contract is pennies to Walmart's profits.
Although I do remember hearing Walmart was supposedly so bothered by not being included in the Saturn's early launch in the US that they refused to sell the console at all.
Though that is only what I've heard, not sure if the smaller size of 1995 Walmart made them more hurting for sales. (though I grew up in Target territory, so I know they grew from a relatively small regional chain to where they are now by the end of the '90s. And I had imagined Walmart was probably similar, except spreading from the opposite side of the country.)
@Toy_Link Thanks a lot! You completely ruined HP for me.
Wanna play that game: Darth Vader is Luke's father. There, that'll teach you ...
If you're really upset by this... Maybe you should check your life.
Opts to play the Witcher 3 on the Switch. "The Switcher".
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