It has been billed as one of the biggest game releases of all times for game publisher Rockstar Games, which spent over $270 million in making the game. GTA V is already expected to rake in over $1 billion for the publisher this year alone. No wonder there is a lot of hype surrounding the game and gamers world over have been pre-ordering it for almost a year and are queuing up in many countries outside brick and mortar stores to get their copy tomorrow, when the game debuts. In India, online retailer Flipkart had pre-orders for the game, which comes for both Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, currently priced at Rs 2,999 for the regular box set and Rs 3,999 for the special edition box. However, to the agony of many who pre-ordered, they are unlikely to receive their games by tomorrow, leave aside the thrill of playing the most anticipated game of the year a couple of hours after it is launched.
According to emails sent by Flipkart to those who pre-ordered their copies, it was supposed to be shipped only later today from Mumbai and will reach them in 1-2 days depending on their location. However, it is being reported that Flipkart has reviewed its decision and will start shipping the game only from tomorrow. We have reached out to Flipkart for their take on the situation.
“Please note that due to publisher regulations we are not permitted to start shipping before the evening of September 16th and since we are going to ship the preorders from Mumbai, you will receive the game along with the freebies that were a part of your order – GTA Double-Sided Poster, Metallic V Locket and Atomic Blimp DLC within 1-2 business days post shipping, depending on your geographical location,” the email reads.
“I usually order from Flipkart because their service has been top notch. It’s odd that they emailed us saying they’ll ship on September 16 and now tell an industry publication that they’re changing their mind. Won’t be long before they blame someone else for this. Lesson learned: I’ll be getting my pre-orders from brick and mortar outlets going forward,” says Rishi Alwani, who works in the video game industry.
“Flipkart’s 180 “review” of the shipping date, is the sole reason why I cancelled all my future preorders. They shouldn’t have sent out an email and made promises, royally managed to mess up the biggest title of the year. Brick-and-mortar has my money from now,” said Vasu Chaturvedi, who also works in the video game industry.
The emotion is being echoed on Twitter where some gamers are voicing their displeasure.
Got a mail from Flipkart, they’ll be shipping GTA V from 16th onwards. Since they’re shipping from Mumbai it’ll take 2-3 days
— Harpreet Singh (@Harry_Jerry) September 15, 2013
In case of high profile launches, global online retailers take extraordinary steps to ensure those who pre-order get their shipment on the launch day itself. Apple, for instance, ensures that its devices reach the location a day before the delivery day, where they are kept on hold to be delivered on launch day. The delivery of GTA V on the global launch day would have gone a long way for Flipkart and its credibility.
We have reached out to Flipkart and will update with their take if and when they respond.