Waiting in line for an Xbox One launch day event can be a long and cold affair. My wife and I and all of our line buddies at Best Buy in Olathe, KS got a welcomed surprise that some would think could only happen in a dream! After cold temperatures, rain, sleet, snow and gusts of chilly winds, we were being chatted up by @Xbox on Twitter. The event to unfold would leave everyone in line warmer, fed and shocked into disbelief.
It really all started with a FourSquare Check-In at Best Buy & tweeting out a picture of my wife, Carisa Mackey and I’s prime spot in line positions #4 and #5. My tweet read, “Well we are about 2 hours into waiting #4 & #5 for the @Xbox One lauch! #XboxOne (at @BestBuy).” We had a picture attached that showed our chairs lined up and us all heavily bundled.
The tweet that started it all:
The start of our line and bundled up protection:
The temperatures started in the 40’s and fell to 28 degrees. It was a joke in our line that Carisa and I were the most prepared out of anyone they’d ever seen for a game system launch. Carisa and I had brought three layers of clothing, ponchos, sleeping bags, tarps, a tent, a Mr. Heater with 2 propane tanks, thermos full of coffee & hot chocolate, tons of snacks and computers, tablets, laptops and backup batteries for our cellphones. We were determined and ready to wait out this long cold line to make sure we got our hands on an Xbox One Day One Launch console.
After I got this tweet, I was pretty stoked and started laughing and telling everyone in line that @Xbox had just thanked us all for our dedication & warm coats. While my wife knew I was telling the truth, everyone else sort of said, oh yeah, okay well that’s nice. Essentially, at this point I think it was thought I was probably making it up that @Xbox was talking with people.
I responded to Xbox at 4:51pm and told them, “@Xbox You’re welcome, haha. We’re super excited. Sleet is starting! Brrr. 🙂 Thoughts of “xbox on” keep us warm. #XboxOne”
At my day job at PlattForm Advertising, it’s a running joke as well to shout out commands throughout the cubes of voice commands for Xbox. My boss, Eric Bridges finds it incredibly funny to shout commands at our Dev team people like Mat Owens, like “Xbox Fix That.” I brought the fun to our line waiting outside in the cold and would randomly shout out commands like, “Xbox Laundry“, “Xbox Clean House“, “Xbox Bud Light” and get a chuckle from everyone in line.
At 4:56pm @Xbox responded to me with a tweet saying, “@webaddict Just say “Xbox On” to start the heaters. 😉 Luckily, not too much longer now…” At this point people were high fiving me in line and laughing shouting out things that I should be saying to @Xbox, there were a LOT of suggestions.
I chose to ignore all the random crazy suggestions and stuck to our Xbox voice commands joke. I tweeted out at 5:26pm, “@Xbox lol, I have to be honest it’s been our running joke in line. We tried “Xbox Dinner” too, nothing yet. #XboxOne”
This is where it starts to get really crazy and just plain unbelievable. About 15 minutes after the tweet from Xbox, a Best Buy employee came outside and had our #1 line hero come inside with his chair, bag and things to wait inside. I heard that this was all of Best Buy’s doing but it’s pretty amazing that Xbox had just told us to use “Xbox On” for the heaters, suspicious, right?
After about 5 – 10 minutes a Best Buy employee came out and said, “We’re not allowing everyone to come in, but I am taking positions #2, #3, #4 and #5.” At this point we were all freezing, confused and really excited at the fact we might be able to wait inside. Would we not have to break out the Mr. Heater after all?!? Best Buy Retweeted and liked a lot of our pictures last night and was involved in all of the good cheer. One tweet from 6:08pm you can see they RTed was below which said, “Our dedication paid off, some amazing employees @BestBuy let some of us inside! O.o Thank you! #XboxOne http://twitpic.com/dm3ag6”
Above you can see a picture of my wife @CarisaMackey and our other line buddies, #1, #2 and #3. While we were all excited, we started to get concerned the others had to wait outside. After another 15 minutes or so, another round of about 6 more people were let inside to wait out the Xbox One launch.
Some time around 6:50pm, we were all sitting in our chairs discussing which games we were going to buy when some people in front of me were telling me someone is here to see you. I was jumbled and confused and walked up to the front of the line and said, “Who is it.” I heard a bunch of guys say, “That’s him, that’s #4 and #5.” I looked up at a Pizza Hut man holding three boxes of pizzas and said, “Huh?” The Pizza Hut Delivery guy quickly said, “Well, are you #4 and #5?” I started laughing and said, “Well, I guess so that’s my place in line.” The Pizza Delivery guy from Pizza Hut replied, “Well here you go. These are yours…” I was really confused now, I told the man I didn’t order any pizza and didn’t know anything about it. Pizza Delivery guy said, “Don’t worry about it buddy, this is all paid for. It’s yours, here you go!” “Well, who the heck paid for this then” I asked him. “Sir, this is straight from Washington. Enjoy. I have to go!” And poof the delivery man was gone.
I started talking to my wife and discussing why the state of Washington would ship us pizza as we were all laughing. I told everyone loudly, wait a second, this is from Xbox, Microsoft and Xbox are in Washington so… could it be, did they send us pizza? Everyone was saying, “No way,” “Impossible”, “Why would they ship YOU pizza?” We retraced our steps and looked at our last tweet to @Xbox and all of just started laughing out loud as the reality sunk in. XBOX LITERALLY JUST SHIPPED US PIZZA!
Later Xbox asked me to DM them for a quick question. I followed Xbox and asked them if they shipped us the pizza.
Not too long after that Xbox publicly replied to me at 7:45pm and tweeted, “@webaddict We sure did, straight from Seattle! Thanks for being such amazing fans of Xbox.” After the tweet below came out everyone was in an uproar at Best Buy. People were telling their friends, calling theirs wives, high fiving and let’s be honest, everyone was chowing down on pizza. I took the pizza boxes and ripped them in pieces and passed out the Pizza to everyone inside with us. After we got the pizza to my dedicated line buddies, I walked around outside and fed the rest of the cold Xbox fans. All in all, a LOT of people ended up with pizza last night due to Xbox appreciating their fans!
At this point, the picture we sent out on Twitpic has nearly 4,886 views in 20 hours and the Tweet on Twitter has about 31 Retweets and 44 Favorites. I’m still stunned how much of a perfect PR play this was by Xbox and how cool it was of them to take care of their fans that are dedicated.
Thanks Xbox, Microsoft, Best Buy & Pizza Hut!
Way to go Xbox and Microsoft. I’m a fan for life (already was) and all my friends are still in disbelief. Xbox you made our Xbox Midnight Launch memorable for a lifetime.
— Joel Mackey (@webaddict) November 22, 2013