[Update: Best Buy has sent an e-mail to all Rock Band pre-orderers admitting to the mistaken listing and cancelling the existing pre-orders. "We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused you. Because you are a valued customer, we would like to offer you a $5 Digital Coupon* toward a future purchase at www.BestBuy.com," the note reads, in part. Hey, it was always a long shot, but at least we get a coupon for our trouble.]
If you've been reading the updates to our story on the $60 Rock Band package with included controllers offered by BestBuy.com, you know that the site stopped taking pre-orders some time Monday night and took down the product entirely on Tuesday morning. Well, this morning things started getting really interesting.
BestBuy.com re-posted the product description pages for Rock Band this morning with a few key changes. The product description now clearly states that the drum, guitar and microphone accessories are "sold separately" and "optional" (Optional? We'd like to see them play the game without 'em!). These notes were not on the version available on the site from at least last Thursday through Monday night, as the above scanned printout clearly shows. Pre-orders are no longer being offered for the item, which has the same SKU and Best Buy ID number as the original posting.
So what about those of us that pre-ordered before the bait-and-switch. We called Best Buy and talked to a customer service representative who seemed just as confused as we were. First she checked to see if she could simply add the peripherals to the order but, unfortunately, BestBuy.com does not yet have the Rock Band controllers in its system (unlike Amazon and GameStop). She then checked to see if other orders placed on Monday had received any special consideration, but none showed any change from the original order. At one point she tried to argue that the original description may have just meant that the game merely supported the peripherals, but the printout we have clearly states that the peripherals were included (that one little word is key here).
We were then forwarded on to a BestBuy.com floor supervisor, Chris, who we walked through the whole situation once again. Chris asked us to fax the printout we made of the earlier version of the page and said he would forward the matter to their corporate headquarters. Chris said in situations like these the corporate HQ has to decide whether to amend the orders already placed or provide some other form of restitution to those affected.
Chris said he expected to have some sort of answer by tomorrow, and you'll be sure to hear about it as soon as we do. In short, don't cancel those pre-orders just yet. Joystiq is on the case!