TPCi Acknowledges Pokemon TCG Product Shortages, Promises Future Availability

As I reported two months ago, the pandemic has impacted printing plants and lead to production shortages. This has forced Pokemon and other card games to print their products in “waves,” where a limited amount of product is available upfront and more is printed later. We advised readers to be patient since the impacted products would eventually come to stores.

Today, TPCi publicly acknowledged the shortages with an update to their customer support page. They state there will be more product coming to retailers as soon as possible, which is what the “wave” model already entails.

However, they promise they will “maximize production […] upon release” for future sets, which seems to indicate they will be able to go back to normal production capacity in the near-future. Perhaps for March’s Battle Styles and beyond.

We’re aware that some of you are experiencing difficulties purchasing certain Pokémon Trading Card Game products due to very high demand and global shipping constraints impacting availability. We understand this inconvenience can be disappointing for fans, and we are working to address it where it is within our control.

In situations where there is limited availability, we are actively working to print more of the impacted Pokémon TCG products as quickly as possible and at maximum capacity to support this increased demand. Reprinted products are expected to be available at retailers as soon as possible.

For new Pokémon TCG expansions launching in the future, we are maximizing production to increase product availability upon release, and we will continue to reprint the products to replenish stock at retailers as soon as possible.

We’d like to thank the community for their continued support and patience as we work to deliver more Pokémon TCG products to fans.

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  1. JayMankey Optimistic Trainer/Collector
    JayMankey

    Member

    This is admirable on TPCI's part. They may not be able to control the scalper market, but they damn sure can control their production and do their best to combat the scalpers! Cheers to them!
     
  2. Yaginku Aspiring Trainer
    Yaginku

    Member

    Good sign. Hopefully the plan is to reprint a bunch of sets going back, Shining Fates being a top priority. It might also be useful to delay the announcement of the reprints as much as possible, to shorten the time that scalpers have to dump the product as the new wave hits the shelves. They should absolutely be left will palettes of MSRP-valued products they've overpaid for.
     
  3. Kumaquat Collecting Birbs
    Kumaquat

    Member

    This is welcome news after having to see the slapfights over the McDonalds set over the past few days
     
    JayMankey likes this.
  4. Chris_the_hammer Aspiring Trainer
    Chris_the_hammer

    Member

    The problem with announcements like this is I think most of them react to them emotionally and don’t think long term big picture. What would be the point of someone spending money to get into playing this game (especially in standard) if they know the cards they have will never retain any kind of value because they can be reprinted at any time? We will have to wait and see how far back they truly go, if they start printing Team Up forward again then I would say the game is officially dead to collectors and a lot of people will not waste money starting to play it in the masters devision
     
  5. itsPokeTree Aspiring Trainer
    itsPokeTree

    Member

    Really not sure if this is good news or bad news to be honest.

    I don’t think printing more of the sets will make any difference to the shortage, won’t it just give the scalpers more stock?

    Hopefully I’m wrong and this will fix the stock issues but I do worry that the sets I’ve worked painfully hard to acquire over the last 6 months are about to become worthless...
     
  6. Number51x Blasting off at the speed of light!
    Number51x

    Member

    Charizard and Pikachu taking a vacation from the sets would also help loads.
     
  7. Hongo Aspiring Trainer
    Hongo

    Member

    “We will improve—”
    “Sir, we’re making record profits right now.”
    “We plan to improve. However, for the time being...”

    But really, I can’t wait for the bubble to pop. I actually miss seeing old GX boxes no one wanted on the bottom shelves in droves.
     
  8. Shinxed3 Get Shinxed bro
    Shinxed3

    Member

    I don't suppose this means more reprint boxes for Team Up-Cosmic Eclipse...? A player can dream...
     
    A Dilophosaurus likes this.
  9. don()shinobi PokeBeach's Yu-Gi-Oh enthusiast. I guess.
    don()shinobi

    Member

    So... they've always had the power to print more product to meet demand and just haven't until now? Am I missing something? Or am I reading too much into this?
     
  10. Yaginku Aspiring Trainer
    Yaginku

    Member

    To play the game.
     
  11. Animegamer420 Aspiring Trainer
    Animegamer420

    Member

    With the amount of large box sets i saw just lying around, just to dissappear the very next day, indicates it wasnt scalpers and i think they were recalled by vendors; and that this is an artificial shortage to drive up sales and value. I say conspiracy
     
    bbb888 likes this.
  12. Skeleton Liar サーナ~
    Skeleton Liar

    Member

    I mean, I hope for the best, but... I'll believe it when I see it.

    I was typing a lot about all of the factors and hypotheticals about this whole mess, but I scrapped it because that sums up what I think.

    Edit: Though, I will say that demand outweighing supply has been an issue before the pandemic happened.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2021
  13. AshCo The Salt Factory
    AshCo

    Member

    Let me start by saying, regardless, I'm glad they're acknowledging things. That's a good sign. A lot like @Skeleton Liar I'm going to hope for the best but I'm only going to believe it when I see it.

    I'd love to believe that Pokémon will do their best to improve their supply, and I completely understand the difficulties the pandemic has wrought upon the supply chain of basically any business and industry. It's inevitable that there were going to be issues and any sensible person would understand this.

    However... They haven't been printing to demand since Hidden Fates came out. Which is why I'm remaining cautious on how much this is going to change things. Returning to the Hidden Fates level of stock isn't going to fix issues at all. So are they going to make an attempt to go beyond that? Or are they going to try and just go back to that old level of "Normal," where we're still going to have scalpers and whatnot buy everything out, just in greater numbers.

    I'd like to remain hopeful that the former is what will happen, if not anytime soon, then once the pandemic, who knows when, settles some more and the supply chain is able to fully work to the levels it would in a normal situation. I understand the difficulties, as said before, but I also hope Pokemon takes the time to analyze the supply and demand situation and adapt. Otherwise, nothing will be solved, even post-pandemic.



    As an aside-and I don't know how feasible this is- I think both a preorder window and/or the ability to backorder, would be a great way to combat the scalping issue. Giving customers a preorder window could give them a time to order what they want (within a certain limitation per person, of course) of the new release, Pokemon produces it to order, and then everyone who ordered gets their shipment of it, so long as they ordered within the preorder time period.

    Backordering too, would allow for more reserves to be made even if the product goes out of stock. I did this with some Lego products that went out of stock the day they came out, and although there was some waiting, the point was I still got what I wanted. Even though it took some time to wait, which is fine, that backorder still allowed me to get the product even though I technically "missed" it. Pokemon allowing this for product releases would help as well, though scalpers would still be an issue. There would just have to be sufficient enough shipments to ensure that those who can backorder have ample time to do so.

    Granted, I'm no supply chain manager, but I think if other industries can do this, Pokemon is well able to as well. They're only losing out by not giving the supply that matches the demand. Scalpers will always be an issue, don't get me wrong, but whatever improvement we can get we should encourage.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2021
    JayMankey, bbb888 and Skeleton Liar like this.
  14. The Binder Guy Aspiring Trainer
    The Binder Guy

    Member

    Didn’t they say the SAME thing regarding Champion’s Path’s supply issue back in October and it only resulted in the ETBs being reprinted?

    That said I’m more of pessimist and, until I actually SEE more products in stores and said stores putting HARSH limits on the amount of product a person can buy per day, I’ll continue to see Tweets like these as “heartfelt” pleas to the crowd that ultimately ring hollow.
     
    srsrox, Coolpilot, Number51x and 2 others like this.
  15. jamestajames Aspiring Trainer
    jamestajames

    Member

    Now let’s get them to acknowledge that their game is boring so they can do something about it.
     
  16. stealthboy Aspiring Trainer
    stealthboy

    Member

    Agree completely. They are just saying what they have to say, but in the retail stores it won't make a difference. There will still be bare shelves. And what's left at independent card shops will be 2x or 3x the price. I never was able to obtain a Champion's Path ETB at retail price.
     
  17. A Dilophosaurus If it's not Cosmic Eclipse then I don't care.
    A Dilophosaurus

    Member

    Please reprint tons of Cosmic Eclipse, and not just the booster boxes.
     
  18. bidoof&company MEMES ARE LIFE
    bidoof&company

    Member

    Just wondering is this shortage the reason why cards have been so expensive recently?
     
    bbb888 likes this.
  19. Skeleton Liar サーナ~
    Skeleton Liar

    Member

    That was one of the rambling bits that I scrapped from my post. They tweeted there would be more Champion's Path in October, and I only saw products in a Target once over a month later. Never again. And I never saw products in stores before that tweet. That was the only time I witnessed Champion's Path in the wild. I mean, I know that's anecdotal, but I at least thought I would have seen this set more than once. And I recall the Pokemon Center having pre-orders for the ETB reprint, but that lasted a whopping whole day, if that; I don't remember how long it was up before being filled.
     
    Coolpilot and The Binder Guy like this.
  20. Number51x Blasting off at the speed of light!
    Number51x

    Member

    You're not alone. I saw product on shelves one time, for part of a day, and then never again.
     
    Skeleton Liar and The Binder Guy like this.