Ever since Nintendo's Amiibo figures first hit the scene, they've been surprisingly hard to come by. The miniature figures were immediately popular among all sorts of gamers, and rumors that certain characters would eventually be discontinued only added to their value. Even as the next set of Amiibo is getting ready to hit store shelves, Nintendo can barely keep up with the demand.
While a lot of that is due to the fans, there's another reason for the current Amiibo shortage: the West Coast port strike. In fact, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata stated (via Nintendo Everything's translation) that the port strikes aren't just affecting the Amiibo shipments, but New 3DS shipments as well.
It all started this past July: over the summer, roughly 20,000 union contracts expired, and eventually, negotiations took a turn for the worse. Retailers were able to plan ahead so that the holiday shopping season wouldn't be affected, but two months later, supplies are starting to run low. As of this writing, new contracts are currently being negotiated...but, for the time being, cargo ships are essentially stranded just off the West Coast. Some of those ships are carrying - you guessed it - Nintendo's supplies.
Iwata's statement is available in Japanese on Nintendo's website, but for those who don't speak the language, Iwata basically confirmed that some Amiibos are so hard to come by because the shipments have yet to reach America. The same thing also goes for selected New 3DS shipments, though individual games aren't affected - thanks to their lighter weight, games are simply flown to America, while heavier items like the Amiibo figures must be shipped via boat.
For the time being, it looks like Amiibos will be even harder to come by than usual. With any luck, current negotiations will be successful and the strike will be over soon - which means that American fans can finally get their hands on some new Amiibo.