Wii U Pre-Orders Now Open at Walmart Stores Across U.S.

by Jonathan Metts - October 14, 2012, 2:59 pm PDT
Total comments: 25

Deluxe pre-orders are sold out everywhere else, but now you can reserve one at America's largest retail chain.

Walmart stores across the United States are now accepting pre-orders for Wii U Deluxe Set until November 1. 

The reservation system, which launched today, is available through the layaway desk, may also be called the Walmart.com Services desk, and is typically separate from the main customer service desk. 

Walmart requires that customers pay at least 10 percent of the final price (including sales tax) up-front, as well as a $5 fee that is refunded when the purchase is complete. Customers may optionally pay off the entire balance prior to pick-up, though at least $0.01 must be left unpaid to keep the order open for tracking. 

Pre-orders will be available for pick-up from the same desk at 12:01 a.m. on November 18, the North American launch date. No bundles or additional purchases are required, though customers are required to present a driver's license or other photo ID to open the layaway account.

Based on various reports, including our own experiences with this program, customers may be required to speak with a supervisor in order to set up a reservation. Whether the quantity of pre-orders is being limited per store or not is unknown. 

Special thanks to NWR reader Pandaradox for the tip and help with confirming this story.


SchadenfreudeOctober 14, 2012

My store was only selling the Deluxe set unfortunately. :-\

AVOctober 14, 2012

Quote from: Schadenfreude

My store was only selling the Deluxe set unfortunately. :-\

Why is that a problem? The ' basic set ' I think is totally inferior and all but pointless.

ejamerOctober 15, 2012

I'd rather have the basic set. NintendoLand doesn't appeal to me, I don't like digital downloads (at least not the way they are being handled on the 3DS so far), and the extra memory isn't enough to offset the need for a better solution anyway.  The only thing that I actually do want from the deluxe set is that cool cradle, but I'm totally not willing to pay a premium for it.

NeoThunderOctober 15, 2012

My store only had black deluxe sets too. It sounded like I was the first one to come in to purchase it today. So hopefully that guarantees me a system. I guess it's bad news for someone that wanted a white one instead. Worked out for me cause I wanted black. Thanks NWR for the heads up

CericOctober 15, 2012

I'm mixed.  I have a Pre-Order at Gamestop(GS) already but,  sort of want to get one at Walmart as well because I got burned on my Wii Pre-Order and I'm not sure if I should hedge my bets.  Though GS probably has a vested interest in fulfilling Pre-Orders.  Plus GS Corparate has told the Stores Nintendo isn't allowing for special Midnight launches so, I could get it earlier. 

mustbeburtOctober 15, 2012

I'm still holding out for Amazon.  I've been saving up Amazon credit to buy a WiiU.  Anyone heard any news on whether or not pre-orders are going to happen on Amazon?

TJ SpykeOctober 15, 2012

Amazon is not even selling Nintendo hardware at all (they are still whining because Nintendo wouldn't give them special treatment last year), so I wouldn't hold my breath on them selling Wii U at all, yet alone pre-orders (you will be able to get it from third parties on Amazon, but not from them directly).

Hmmm, I guess I'll stick with my Best Buy pre-order. With two day shipping, I should be in decent shape. Might change my mind if I wind up going to a launch event.

mustbeburtOctober 15, 2012

Quote from: TJ

Amazon is not even selling Nintendo hardware at all (they are still whining because Nintendo wouldn't give them special treatment last year), so I wouldn't hold my breath on them selling Wii U at all, yet alone pre-orders (you will be able to get it from third parties on Amazon, but not from them directly).

Wow.  What a massive bummer.  Looks like I'll be missing launch.  I HAVE to buy it on Amazon...

Bman87301October 15, 2012

So what exactly does "sold out pre-orders" mean? Does it mean their entire incoming shipment of units are reserved so if you haven't got one pre-ordered already you're out of luck, or does it just mean they have a fixed number of units they're setting their specifically setting aside for pre-orders but will still have others available for walk-ins?

I can't commit to spending $350+ until I have a better idea of where the economy is going-- which all depends on how the election goes. If all other retailers are already sold out, then it's a pretty safe assumption Walmart will be as well long before November 6 finally comes around... So unless there will be some available for walk-ins, I'm going to have to hold off. :-/

BlkPaladinOctober 15, 2012

Just preordered mine at walmart. Was the first one. Yeah they only had the UPC for the Deluxe version in the folder. The employee who helped didn't even know it was happening. Thankfully they left the "Wii U Preorder Reservation Process handbook" on the counted of the Layaway. Took a picture of the wonderfully redundant folder.
(Link to the image. Its a little too big.)

lolmonadeOctober 15, 2012

My wife had to hop-scotch to a few stores in our area, but finally found one in Raleigh that was still taking pre-orders.  Looks like this might not last long, as the first few she went to said they already stopped taking them.

At least now I don't have to wait with bated breath for the Gamestop waitlist or hope that my local Target will have any when they open in the morning.

trevor112October 15, 2012

Thanks Guys!!!! :)

I just preordered mine this morning. They had only the deluxe for preorder, which was fine because that was the version I wanted. I asked about them running out of preorders online they explained that it was separate from the store ( I kind of knew that already)

I know Sears, Kmart, Target and also Walmart  have a separate online service from the stores. Once even target employee told me that their website has nothing to do with their store. Bestbuy.com and gamestop though do allow you to buy things online for store pickup instantly.

Walmart's employees did say they did not really advertise preorders and a midnight launch at my Walmart store will be happening.

I guess people just assume they sold out because walmart.com ran out as well as every other online retailer.

mattSeaweedOctober 15, 2012

So here's some info you's guys. I'm a manager at Walmart and I'm here to try and answer some questions. The amount of pre-orders are determined by corporate. They are allowing X amount of preorders. When we reach that limit COMPANY WIDE, they will block the sale at the register. We don't know how many exactly this is but I'm sure Walmart has an agreement with Nintendo. As a manager, I HATE PRE ORDERS!!! of course my main concern is that we will not receive the product and people will assume that it's somehow my fault personally. That being said. I felt the same way when we did iphone 5 pre-orders, but to my surprise, it went off without a hitch. We received every pre-ordered iphone 5 and our customers were very happy. If Walmart pulls this off........I might just be impressed. Heck, I might just like pre-orders. :cool;

wildoubleOctober 15, 2012

I got my pre-order by using one of those online tracking services like whohas.it. I'm not running to Walmart to Walmart and dealing with annoying managers and lawaway desks to find it.

lolmonadeOctober 16, 2012

Quote from: wildouble

I got my pre-order by using one of those online tracking services like whohas.it. I'm not running to Walmart to Walmart and dealing with annoying managers and lawaway desks to find it.


Aidansazer13October 16, 2012

I walked into my local wal-mart was handed a advertisement for the layaway offers and walked to the back of the building to put one on layaway. Luckily I got a pre-order but the guy behind the desk was uneducated on the subject and took almost 25 minutes to go through the whole process. And to make things worse he said as I was just about to walk away that "hopefully we will get those (the Wii U's) in stock at launch." That didn't make me feel any better about wal-mart...

mustbeburtOctober 26, 2012

OK, so regarding the whole Amazon not selling pre-orders issue... Does that mean that Amazon may not sell WiiU directly AT ALL?  If that is the case, when would everyone guess you could buy a WiiU at retail price (not $600, like people are selling them for on there now)?  I just want to try and get a grip on how long I may be waiting to buy my Deluxe WiiU off Amazon for $350.

Amazon doesn't currently sell the 3DS themselves, instead doing it through third parties, so I wouldn't expect them to sell the Wii U that way anytime soon. With the third parties, it's a bit of a crap shoot, and it really depends on how much stock is available and how much demand there is. Right now, things don't look that good for people who don't already have one preordered getting one at the standard price soon after launch.

mustbeburtOctober 29, 2012

Thanks for the reply....

....Anyone wanna trade $400 in Amazon credit for $400 cash?  :-\

mustbeburtNovember 02, 2012

I don't want to be beating a dead horse here, but I have another question:

Would it make any sense to try to buy WiiU on Amazon UK, since Amazon US isn't selling it?  Compatibility-wise would there be any issues because of region locking?  Also, I wonder if I would be able to use my Amazon credit on Amazon UK....

TJ SpykeNovember 02, 2012

If you buy a Wii U from Amazon UK, it will be a PAL Wii U and you will only be able to play PAL Wii U games. Keep that in mind. So you would have to import every game (and download from the European eShop).

mustbeburtNovember 07, 2012

well, then, no way.  thanks tj spyke.

mustbeburtNovember 27, 2012

I thought I found the solution to my predicament (wanting to buy WiiU with built-up Amazon credit, but Amazon's not selling it directly), but let me save anyone else the trouble - you cannot purchase GameStop gift cards with Amazon credit.  I threw $375 dollars worth of GameStop gift cards in my Amazon shopping cart and was about to pull the trigger when I noticed that none of my Amazon credit was applied to the total!  That would have hit my credit card hard!  Upon further research, Amazon does not allow you to purchase any gift cards with Amazon credit.  Maybe it's like money-laundering?  :Q

TJ SpykeNovember 27, 2012

Yep, Amazon gift cards can not be used to buy other gift cards, site policy: http://www.amazon.com/gp/gc/ref=topnav_giftcert

I guess they have their reasons, whatever they are.

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