When the most popular video games are released in Japan, it is common for employees to call in sick to work so they can spend more time playing, calling it “Pokémon vacation” or “Zelda vacation,” for example. But what some Amazon workers have done there is a mix of audacity and bravery that could only happen in the Land of the Rising Sun.
Travel to Hyrule via Amazon
The magazine Shukan Bunsun has uncovered a small-scale scandal at Amazon warehouses in Kanagawa, where two cases emerged of individuals who decided they were going to have ‘Tears of the Kingdom’ before anyone else. The first case involved a 21-year-old man who entered the company with a plan: sign a delivery contract, steal the game before its release, and never show up again.
Initially, his plan worked perfectly: on May 12th, he was hired by the big company, and a few weeks before the highly anticipated release of ‘Tears of the Kingdom’, he simply stopped showing up at the warehouse. When his boss called his home, his mother informed them that he spent all day playing video games. Well, specifically one game: Zelda. There is a happy ending to the story (except for the employee): he returned the copy after paying for it, and he was immediately fired. Strangely enough, he didn’t complain about being wrongfully terminated.
The other case involved a newly hired 24-year-old man who had similar yet completely different plans. When he stopped showing up for work, which his boss thought was a “Zelda vacation,” the surprise came when it was discovered that he had stolen all sorts of merchandise, from Amiibos to controllers, to resell them as quickly as possible. To no one’s surprise, he was swiftly fired.
In reality, the magazine report is not just about people pulling tricks to get their hands on Zelda, but rather about a much larger issue within Amazon in Japan: people who join the company’s warehouses solely to steal whatever they want and then disappear. While the company doesn’t want to make a big deal out of it and treats it as mere anecdotes, the management is demanding stricter and more deterrent measures. After all, how many times have you heard someone say, “What if I don’t get caught?”
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