Somehow, the Build-A-Bear Animal Crossing Release was a Disaster

Not even Tom Nook is immune to supply and demand.

A few weeks ago, Build-A-Bear announced a new collaborative line in its licensed oeuvre: Animal Crossing. The initial set was going to include bundles for Isabelle and Tom Nook, the animals that run the bureaucracy of your New Horizons island, each sold separately. But getting one was not nearly as easy as one would hope.

The listings went up this morning, but the vast majority that tried to get there at minute one were met with a virtual queue. The queue listed a time until you would be able to order your Isabelle or Tom Nook, anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour to six hours. So if you wanted one, you would have to wait some part of your morning and hope it’s still in stock by the time you get in.

At some point during the wait, people started getting kicked out of line. There was, at the same time, evidence of people on Twitter using Chrome’s dev mode to simply skip the queue, which seemingly pushed other people out of the line. There’s no proof this was done en masse, but by early afternoon, both “bears” were sold out, even for people who remained in the queue all day.

We reached out to Build-A-Bear for comment and a representative confirmed that some people did use an exploit to get past the queue. “We are aware that a fan found and posted a way to skip the line,” the representative said. “No secure information was, or could be, accessed using this method and our team is working to improve our queue process for future events.”

They also confirmed they plan to restock the Animal Crossing bears through the spring and summer.