Up your game
If you fancy yourself an amiibo lover, chances are you're probably not having a good week. Following the announcement of Wave 4's release dates and (*WRATHFUL SCREAMING*) retailer exclusives, every part of the subsequent preorder rollout went to hell in a digital shopping cart. While Target, Toys R' Us and Best Buy had their own disastrous situations, the Amiipocalypse really scorched the earth when demand in-store and online brought GameStop's servers crashing down under a pile of shrieking humanity. It's enough to make a person want to give up on amiibo entirely, because why bother when you're more likely to get struck by lightning while waiting in line than you are to actually get the amiibo you came for?
All in all, if you want to abandon the quest to collect 'em all, that's a choice we respect and understand. Really, really understand. But we also know some of you out there just won't be able to let go, and you'll continue to hit F5 on the order page until your keyboard is soaked in blood and you're poking that key with a gnarled stump. For you, to alleviate your pain, we have some secret methods for getting the amiibo you so desperately crave. Some of them can get a bit involved, but if it gets you the toy you absolutely need, won't that be worth it?
The first amiibo to be officially designated 'rare' by hordes of angry Nintendo collectors, Marth got so popular so early that unless you're incredibly lucky and/or psychic, getting your mitts on him became next to impossible. Now that a few months have passed and the digital smoke's dissipated, Nintendo has decided to issue a second print of the amiibo next month to promote Codename S.T.E.A.M., with which Marth is compatible. However, if you're feeling impatient, there are quicker - if more expensive - ways to introduce a brand new Marth to your amiibo shelf, namely Amazon and Play-Asia.
Pit has been scarce since his initial premiere during the second wave of amiibo, and stores have had a hard time keeping him in stock ever since. That largely only applies to the American market though, and any collectors willing to go outside the US are the most likely to get Pit at a decent price. Play-Asia and Amazon's many Eurasian iterations could work, or if you have friends or family of a European persuasion, ask them to swing by the nearest Tim Horton's and pick one up. Alternatively, if no one across the pond truly loves you, you can always talk to someone with international business connections who might be able to help you out. That might mean hollowing out your amiibo and using it to traffick cocaine though, so be aware of the terms.
While it might not be a common occurrence, rare amiibos can sometimes show up in a given store without warning, usually when employees are cleaning out stock or the shop is in a sparsely populated area. If you're looking to get your hands on Ike, betting on this small miracle may be your best chance. Get some friends together and camp out at the amiibo-bearing locale of your choice, with plenty of blankets, food, and water to get you through potentially harsh weather. Alternatively, if its a 24-hour location like Wal-Mart, you can just camp out inside the store itself (preferably against the amiibo wall) until the figure of your dreams is restocked.
It might be too late to get your hands on a Rosalina amiibo from the Super Smash Bros. line, but it seems there's another Rosalina amiibo planned for the Mario Party 10 line, and this time it's best not to take any chances. Line up in front of your retail location of choice on the night before launch, making sure to bring your running shoes and some brass knuckles (alternatively, you can dip your bandaged hands in wax and roll them around in broken glass). When the store finally opens on release day, sprint through the aisles as fast as your Nikes will carry you, knocking over displays to buy time and committing to fisticuffs and/or choke-outs wherever necessary.
While it might be tempting to steal an amiibo from an unsuspecting stranger, stealing is wrong, and will also probably get you punched in the mouth when you're inevitably caught. Instead, make a trade by taking the amiibo in question and replacing it with an adorable puppy. Everybody loves puppies, and they're so wiggly and lovably distracting that the stranger in question won't even notice when you abscond with your new figurine. Keep in mind that the more valuable the amiibo, the more puppies you'll need to get your target to take their eyes off your prize. Two corgis and a dachshund might net you a Ness, but for Shulk, you're going to have to throw in some golden retrievers and a French/English bulldog mix.
Given how quickly this amiibo ran out during the pre-order stage, you're going to have to play the long con. Apply for a position at every amiibo-stocking retailer within a 50-mile radius, and the sooner the better, so you can get your nametag and sweet company-issued polo shirt well in advance of release. Worm your way into your supervisor's heart and do everything possible to obtain a stockroom key (blackmail and fast-acting tranquilizer darts are your best friends here), then lie in wait. The day will soon come when you're the first to open a box of glorious Robin amiibos, so you can grab one and vanish into the night. You'll lose out on your last paycheck, but Robin is yours, and that's what matters.
Lucina preorders sold out within minutes at Best Buy, and lasted only slightly longer in GameStop's busted server gauntlet. The odds of actually getting one of your own are looking as good as an ant's chances in an enclosure of starving anteaters and evil kids with magnifying glasses. So instead of futilely refreshing Target's website day and night through constant hiccuping sobs, try this simpler trick instead: find someone who already owns the Lucina amiibo and assume their identity, not unlike Matt Damon in The Talented Mr. Ripley. It may be slow-going, picking up on their mannerisms and speech patterns, not to mention writing style so you can effectively fool their friends and family in letters home. But once you have that down, a few garbage bags, an elaborate goodbye note, and a one-way ticket to Milan are all that stand between you and that sweet figurine.
This amiibo is so heavily guarded and difficult to obtain that if you're serious about completing your collection, you'll have to take to the shadows. Rumor has it there's an alley marked with a symbol that you can only see in black light. Once there, you must have 32 grains of black sand - no more, no less. Murmur "A bene placito" three times at the stroke of midnight, sprinkle the sand across the threshold and depart post-haste. Little Mac will appear on your doorstep one fortnight hence. Your recompense shall be expected in due time.
Most Best Buy locations got as few as ten Meta Knight figures to cover both pre-orders and in-store purchases, so if you're serious about snagging this amiibo, you'll have to cut off the head of the snake. Gather a group of like-minded friends and stage an elaborate abduction of Best Buy's CEO, and set the ransom at one amiibo per agent in your entourage. Make sure to vet all associates to determine their loyalty and passion for Nintendo products (preferably by forcing each of them to take a lie detector test, looking deep into their eyes, and asking if they like early Mario or Sonic better). Then it's all a waiting game until the amiibo are yours. Just try to have a contingency plan in the event that Best Buy hires Liam Neeson to deal with the situation.
One of the most difficult-to-obtain amiibo since he premiered and then promptly vanished with the release of the first wave, the Villager is a prize that will take some commitment to call your own. Drive into the heart of any secluded rural area, and make sure to procure a farm animal of your choosing during the journey. Bring it to a crossroads betwixt silent fields on the night of a full moon (corn fields if at all possible, though wheat will also be sufficient), sacrifice the creature and spread its blood in a Pentagram shape across a copy of Animal Crossing: New Leaf. Sell your soul to the crossroads demon that answers your call and walk, smiling serenely, into the night with Beelzebub's plastic blessing cradled in your hands.
Cryogenically freeze yourself. Await the inevitable downfall of humanity that will likely be caused by the amiibo shortage. Awaken 125 years in the future and begin sifting through the ashes of civilization. Find your precious, clutch it tightly to your chest, and whisper "Time enough at last."
Go forth and buy
Those are our tips for getting the rarest amiibo on the market, tested and proven effective. By other people of course - our intern hasn't been the same since, but you have to sacrifice to achieve glory. Got any tips of your own, or want to try these out and report back? Shout to the heavens in the comments below. Pro aris et amiibo!
Gotta have more amiibo, because this is actually a problem and dear lord someone please help you? Well, I can sure help you learn more about amiibo! Check out our amiibo list and everything you need to know about amiibo so you have somewhere to point when people ask what's wrong with you.