So I was initially on the fence about whether I would attend the Wii U launch last night at the Nintendo World store in NYC. I had neglected to get a pre-order (which is VERY uncharacteristic as I have gotten pre-orders for every Nintendo system!), and was worried that I might sit in line for hours, only to go home empty handed. I finally convinced myself that it was for my son (who I had carried in a car seat to the GCN launch, and was with me when he was 5yrs old for the Wii launch at Toys R Us in Times Square), and my wife and I decided to surprise him by taking him. He had absolutely no idea what the hell we were doing until we arrived at the middle of the line with Mii characters all over the place!!!
Anyway, we took our place around the corner on 49th Street at 8:30pm and began the waiting game. It felt like we were completely disconnected from the event because when we got there, there was absolutely no action going on and we were just standing in a queue. 20 minutes later that changed as there was a constant flow of swag making it's way through the line. From Mii cut-outs, to lighted Wii U batons, to grilled cheese and hot apple cider - Nintendo was taking care of us!!! Around 9:30pm or so, they came around with wristbands - once I had one of those bad boys on my wrist, I felt much less anxiety as I knew I wouldn't be going home empty handed and that the wait would be worth it in the end!
My swag - including the half-eaten grilled cheese sandwhich!
Around midnight, you could hear a loud cheer in the distance - signaling the opening of the store. Of course, it would be at least another hour before we moved from the spot we were in!!!
About 30 minutes later, a Cadillac Escalade pulled up to the corner we were standing on. I was a little peeved at first because I was using the curb as a seat, and this jackass we making me give up my resting location so he can park his big ass SUV. He leans out his door about 10 minutes later, and asks what were all in line for - I tell him Justin Bieber just to mess with him - but we eventually let him in on the launch details. No sooner do we finish that conversation, then Reggie himself comes strolling around the corner!!! Holy crap, I was FLOORED!! The Cadillac was here for him - and the driver obviously had no idea who the hell he was picking up! LOL!!!
Anyway, I asked Reggie to take my name - shook his hand - and asked my wife to take a pic. Unfortunately, she couldn't get her damn camera to work and Reggie was trying to get the hell out of there. Luckily, there were enough other people in line taking pics that somebody managed to snap a photo with me in it.
Well, that moment certainly made the wait much more bearable - I was definitely stoked after that!
3:30am, I finally managed to make it into the store! I should mention, this was also our first visit to the Nintendo World store, so that alone was an awesome moment!! Our line was going upstairs, and when we finally got up there, I spied a 'Nintendo Museum' of classic consoles and accessories in the corner - what a cool sight to see. Unfortunately, the store staff was not allowing anyone to wander around the store - you had only one purpose that was allowed last night - buy a Wii U and your accessories and get out!
As we were getting close, one of the people in front of us had their credit card declined - that was a really sad sight to see. Poor guy looked PISSED and utterly dejected - how bad is that?!?!?! Sitting in line for 6 hours, and then getting denied at the finish line. Holy crap. :(
Anyway, I'm happy to report that we finally got home around 4:15am - and the new Wii U has taken up it's rightful place next to my PS3 and all is happy in the TalonMan family!!! Now, if I can just get this stupid GamePad TV Remote crap to actually work with my setup, I'd be golden!!!!