Anyway, I've finally come full-circle. Yes, for the first time since DeskMate was dropped around 1993, I'm back in Radio Shack. The following ad appears in that big Radio Shack tabloid that will likely be appearing in your mailbox this week.
That's Fifty Big Bad Blazin' Baddass Buttkickin' Games for Windows 95/98/NT up there in the upper-right corner. I headed down to our corner Radio Shack to check. Unfortunately, though, they weren't participating in the deal. They did get on the phone and found out that one of the other three Radio Shacks within a mile radius of my house did indeed have 'em (Fort Worth is the only place I know where Radio Shacks outnumber McDonald's). Upon arriving at the other Radio Shack, Shelly and I came upon a tiny rotating display rack full of Cosmi stuff, including my games!
Unfortunately (for them), this Radio Shack seemed to be staffed by people who rode the little bus to school. They had four copies of every title, and they had taped 'em together in twos. When I asked if I could mix-n-match which products I wanted, they insisted that the deal only counted if you bought two of the same title, and the price was $9.99 for a pair, not $9.99 each. Shelly and I simultaneously rolled our eyes and said "O. . .kay", then proceeded to buy all four copies of my games for $20. Holidays are coming up, and it's a perfect stocking-stuffer.
Is it just me? I thought that the ad was pretty obvious. To me, it appears that the CD's are $9.99 each, and if you buy any two titles, you can get three free by mail. They interpreted that as meaning that you must buy two of the same title, pay $9.99 for the pair, and then you'll get your freebies by mail. Weird.
Anyway, it's still quite a good deal. The freebie-deal is a bit of a pain, though. They want $2.99 P&H, they want you to pop open the case to retrieve the original UPC symbol, and you can't choose from all 30 titles for your freebies. The titles you can get free are Board Games, Brochure Magic, Business Card Maker, Card Games, Desktop Publisher, Talking Flash Cards, Greeting Card Magic, Guide to the Galaxy, Label Publisher, PC Attorney, Professional Resume, and 10,000 Recipes. It's too bad, because they had a couple of titles I was interested in getting, like Battle-gammon and a 3D Frogger clone. I'll probably pay the cash and pick 'em up later.
FWIW, the fine print says "Details in store. Offer good 10/1/99 to 1/31/00. Limit 1 request per name/family/address". Just being honest.
Also interesting is that this stuff was the only software in the entire store. Looks like Radio Shack pulled out of computers in a big way, because there was very little computer-related stuff there. They had the usual supplies, like floppy disks, CD-R's, and mouse pads, but little else. The little rack was the only software in the store. I guess that's a good thing, because I won't be shoved into a dusty corner behind the top-shelf titles.
I guess it's a bit of forced irony, me being back in Radio Shack. I bailed out of Tandy in early 1992 when I saw that the DeskMate for Windows project was going south. Looks like I've finally returned :)
Anyway, if you're one of those folks who just can't seem to find my games no matter where you look, you might print up the ad above, drag it down to your local Radio Shack, and get 'em to call around for a participating store.