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Nintendo: exception to the rule?

3:43 PM on 02.15.2007

Dale North

Former Dtoid EIC

As sad as it is, these days poor customer service is almost expected from the makers of our beloved game consoles, although I think that last generation's horror stories were much worse than this time around. Regardless, knowing this, it's really nice to see a upbeat word about a service experience for a change.

After having an optical drive go south, one Wii owner shares their positive story after coming back from Nintendo's offices in Redmond:

So I called the Nintendo customer service telephone number, located right there on their web site (you would be surprised how many companies, and especially repair departments, don't list their phone number on the web). The message telling me I had to wait for a CSR didn't even finish playing before a rep was on the line. I explained my problem and she said she'd get me an RMA right away to get it fixed.

She asked for my phone number. I gave it to her. She did a bit of a verbal double-take and said, "Are you here in Washington?"

"I'm in Redmond, as a matter of fact [location of Nintendo of America's campus]," I replied.

"Well then, let's not bother with the RMA and the shipping labels and all of that. Just bring it on in to Nintendo," she said.

Wh-what...?

Hit the jump to read the rest of the story. 

She assured me she was not kidding. She gave me directions to the Nintendo campus building where the Customer Service Center was located, and five minutes later I was looking at an unassuming door. I took a deep breath, told my son to hold on to the Wii with both hands, for goodness' sake, and opened the door.

A life-size Mario and a larger-than-life Pikachu greeted us. So did a really nice, cheerful woman behind the sales counter. I related my telephone conversation to her, still certain that I'd been had.

"Oh, yeah!" she said. "We do that!"

"Awesome," I blurted. I really did say "Awesome." I'm embarassed about that now.

"It's going to be about 30 minutes, though," she went on. "I'm really sorry."

She wasn't Japanese, but clearly Nintendo is a Japanese company. Only a Japanese service center would apologize for taking 30 minutes to repair a piece of electronics when my expectation going in was that I'd be without it for two weeks.

The boy played games in the waiting area while I sat under the watchful eye of Mario. 25 minutes later I saw her emerge from the back room out of the corner of my eye, but I was watching the boy playing a particularly suspenseful level of Wario Ware Twist. She waited until she heard the "level complete" sound to get my attention.

In those 25 minutes, they'd transferred all of my Miis, friends, and saved games from the old console to a new one. She logged on to make sure my 500 points transferred to the shopping channel. She sent me out with a $0.00 invoice showing a warranty replacement of my Wii and a reset of the warranty clock, meaning the Wii I took home has 15 months of coverage from today, even though I bought my original one almost 3 months ago.

So this is my Valentine to Nintendo. That was the most awesome customer service experience I ever, ever had.

 

Personally, I've also had two really positive experiences with Nintendo: no hassle replacements of broken systems. How have your service calls gone? Is this the start of a new trend? 

[via Vox]

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