GameStop To Sell Doom Eternal A Day Early As Coronavirus Precaution
The retailer announced Wednesday night that it's separating DOOM and Animal Crossing's launches to adhere to the CDC's social distancing guidelines.
The coronavirus pandemic is ongoing but DOOM Eternal and Animal Crossing: New Horizons are still releasing on March 20 as planned.
In a period of social distancing and self isolation, all in an attempt to prevent the spread of a virus now plaguing North America as well as the rest of the world, GameStop has tried to keep most of it stores open throughout. The retailer canceled all midnight launch events for the foreseeable future (DOOM Eternal and New Horizons included), but as Kotaku and Vice reported and the GameStop subreddit has documented, the decision to stay open has been a needlessly reckless one toward GameStop’s customers and employees.
Now the company has announced Wednesday night that it’s going to stagger the releases of the two games that have been attached at the hip ever since they were revealed to both come out on 3/20. DOOM Eternal will go on sale a day early (i.e. tomorrow) while Animal Crossing is being held to its original date on Friday.
To ensure we adhere to CDC-recommended social distancing guidelines, we will be selling DOOM Eternal a day early on Thursday, 3/19 as a safety precaution for our customers and associates. Animal Crossing will release on Friday 3/20 to further help separate the crowds.
— GameStop (@GameStop) March 19, 2020
At face value, you would think a move like this would help limit potential crowds at a time where large gatherings are anything but a good idea. But the thought process behind this seems to severely underestimate how large DOOM’s and Animal Crossing’s fan bases are on their own.
If you’re planning on going to GameStop in the next couple days to get your copy, please be careful. Wash your hands and be mindful of those around you. And if you’re concerned about the risk, going digital with either game is an option too (and you won’t have to go anywhere).
While the coronavirus pandemic hasn’t officially caused any delays, this is the second time where it has at least had an affect on upcoming launch plans.
Earlier Wednesday, after Amazon suspended shipments of non-essential items and raised even more concern with an email of a release date change to Final Fantasy VII Remake, Square Enix issued a statement explaining that the game is still set for April 10, but that everyone might not be able to get the game day one because of the extreme circumstances.