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PS5 pre-orders open early, quickly turn into chaos

Initial stock appears to have sold out at multiple retailers

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close-up of PlayStation logo on the PlayStation 5 Image: PlayStation/Twitch

Update (Sept. 17): Looking to pre-order a PlayStation 5? Retailers appear to have sold out of their initial stock at the moment, but we’ve got all the details on PS5 and PS5 Digital Edition pre-orders here. We’ll update that story as additional pre-orders become available.

Original story: Officially, PlayStation 5 pre-orders weren’t supposed to start until Thursday, Sept. 17. Perhaps you expected to be notified of said pre-orders if you signed up to get a heads-up on Sony’s PS5 website. Instead, orders for the PS5 are seemingly open at most big retailers, which would be great, except for the fact nearly everyone is failing at throwing hundreds of dollars at Sony right now.

If, for example, you try looking at the GameStop PS5 page, you might be greeted with an aggressive message that claims you’ve been blocked by the video game retailer.

A warning message on Image: GameStop

The message is forceful enough that some folks on social media seem legitimately worried or confused about why they’ve been “blocked” by GameStop. Likely, this is just the result of the website getting overwhelming traffic as everyone tries to walk out of its digital storefront with a pre-order. While writing this post, it seems that GameStop has since replaced the blocked message with a more gentle “Oops...Something went wrong” alert.

Even if you’re not trying to pre-order a PS5 or one of its launch games and accessories, you likely noticed something is amiss if you tried doing literally anything else on the website. As of this writing, loads everything, PlayStation related or not, painfully slow. I tried pre-ordering Super Mario 3D All-Stars right now just to see and the page froze.

Things aren’t much better on other storefronts right now, either. Best Buy will often give you an error the second you try and add a PS5 to your cart. Other websites seemingly sell out of their pre-orders within seconds, if they load at all. Amazon appears to have taken down its PS5 landing page.

Getting a PS5 in your cart isn’t particularly reassuring, either — you may not be able to check out or complete the transaction. But those who have managed to secure a pre-order are already turning around to flip ’em on eBay for inflated prices, as is tradition for new hardware launches.

Hopefully, this is just a temporary frenzy that will soon stabilize. Sony is promising that it’ll make more PS5s this year than it did when it released the PS4, which should help. But given that 2020 has been the year of nearly everything, no matter how inane, being sold out or hard to obtain for a reasonable price, the PS5’s availability might be an uphill battle.

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