When I got the e-mail from Nintendo confirming that I was some kind of super gamer and had reached the lofty ranks of an “Elite” member of Club Nintendo, I was thrilled. When they said I would get a special reward I was excited. When I found out I was officially a “Platinum” member and had a choice of swag to choose from, I… was apathetic.
A plush, allegedly life-size, Mario hat or a WiiWare game featuring a single round of Punch-Out!! action against Doc Louis weren’t exactly at the top of my dream-swag wishlist. The hat, which would serve as a nice couch pillow and conversation piece, isn’t all that useful and takes up quite a bit of space. Space I am finally coming to appreciate after slowly pruning my game collection and scanning in the boxes of paper materials I’ve accumulated over the years from E3’s and press contacts. I do love swag but I’m tending to go for smaller gashapon-sized stuff these days. I can cram more of it on my desk… and into shoeboxes when I tire of looking at them.
As for ol’ Doc Louis’s Punch-Out!!, well, I never have been a fan of the series and, at first thought, an intangible downloadable game just didn’t feel exclusive enough. I mean, I can’t take pictures of it to flaunt online and I can’t make a special little nook for it on my game shelf. I could print out a fan-made sleeve and stick it in a white DVD case, but I’d only be lying to myself.
Ultimately, I chose the game. After all, it is a free game, it may finally sway me to play the full Punch-Out!! and one day Nintendo might make a social network akin to Xbox Live and I can totally show off in my “played games” feed that, yes indeed, I can punch a fat black man at any time I choose. But as far off as that day may be it looks like I’ve still got a while to wait to before I can even play it. After I painstakingly made my choice, confirmed and double-confirmed my decision, I got this e-mail:
Your Club Nintendo Elite Status reward order has been accepted.
You will receive an email by November 1, 2009 with more information
on how to get your digital reward.
Thanks for supporting Nintendo!
What!? November!? If Nintendo are masters of one thing it’s tormenting their dedicated fans. Every time I’m up for a Phantom Hourglass feather stylus, a Big Brain academy Wii Remote flashlight, or some other frivolous trinket it seems I’m made to wait ages to get it and this time is the worst yet. Is the game even finished yet? Is this going to require some elaborate 25-digit authentication code or adding a Nintendo GiftBot to my Wii contact list? Do me a favor and don’t bring up Doc Louis around me, I’m just going to try and forget all about this and treat the eventual free game time as an early birthday present.