I decided to wait until this morning (Monday, Nov 20th) before looking into my order status, under the assumption that it would take at least half a day for Nintendo to get my order status up. After getting to work I navigated over to the page the customer rep on the phone told me to use, only to get a 404 Page Not Found error. Navigating through the main Nintendo site I was able to find the correct URL, however.
I entered my return number and zip code, and was presented with my order status. According to the site, I had placed an order for a replacement system, but that it was on backorder. Strange, the customer rep hadn't said anything about a backorder- in fact, he was confident it would ship today. Still things haven't been going my way lately so I decide to call Nintendo and see what's up. Every time I call I get a message saying they are too busy to even *wait* for an operator, but that I can use their automated system.
Navigating through the menus I eventually enter my return number, to which I get the immediate reply that it was not found in their system. I am then given the alternate choice to lookup my order by phone number. This too fails, and I am again asked for my return number, phone number, return number... you get the idea. Several of the menus make reference to a confirmation email that I should have received (which the rep also mentioned), which I hadn't gotten. Was my order so badly back ordered that they hadn't even gotten around to sending me an initial email?
Several times throughout the morning I checked the website. Many times it was down, but most of the time I got the same back order status message. Once, without warning or explanation, the status said it was being "packaged", or something to that effect. A few minutes later, it was back to back order status. Finally around 10:30am I get an automated email from Nintendo... it's a survey asking for feedback on the customer service for my service call the previous day. It has absolutely nothing to do with my order or the confirmation code I was supposed to get. Hmmmm...
Finally around noon I got the confirmation email I was supposed to get the day before. Immediately afterwards I tried the Nintendo hotline again, and this time got through to a regular menu! I happily plugged through the menus, selecting to speak with a rep concerning my repair/replacement status. Right before I'm transferred to a rep I am asked for my return number to "assist them" in helping me. I enter it, and of course it fails as it did before. But I'm in a rep menu now, so I figure if everything fails it will still put me through to an operator.
Nope, the same cycle of asking for my number, failing, phone number, failing, and back to return number occurs again. Not only that, I am never given the option to go back to a previous menu. I hang up and call again, hoping to speak with a general customer rep rather than going through the repair/replace menu. Of course, I am met with the "lines are too busy, call back later" message I was getting earlier in the day. Throughout the day I called a bunch more times, but I never got through again after that one time.
Around 3pm I check the website and find that my order status is "being packaged" again, but this time I have a UPS tracking number! Of course, even if the number is valid it won't be activated until the thing goes on the truck, so I'm not surprised when UPS doesn't find it in their system. Still, I'm making progress, slowly. Finally at 4pm I get an email from Nintendo saying my item has shipped, again giving the same UPS confirmation number. According to UPS it still hasn't actually got on the truck (as of 5pm), but I'm pretty confident it's close.
So- although today was a barrage of confusion and phone system failure, I think my unit will actually ship tonight via 3-day UPS. Given how late it was in the day I won't be surprised if I don't get it until Friday after Thanksgiving, but I should be able to live. I've found that I can still enjoy some of the Wii Sports games despite the messed up textures, so all is not lost until I get my replacement!