Sunday, September 25, 2011
for the great picture.
So this weekend is the first games day since Games Workshop reworked their new release policy. If you are unfamiliar with this policy, basically all Games Workshop releases will now remain unannounced till 2 weeks before their release. So let’s say the Necrons are being released on October 15. Well it is more than 2 weeks out so Games Workshops new policy is to not admit it exists or that it is coming out. Yes even though the product is disappearing from the shelves, and the website. My local GW store hasn’t been replenished on GW products in a few months now but still plays stupid about their release, probably because he hasn’t been told anything either.
So no matter how frustrating it can be from a gamer at a retail store perspective, let’s look at what it hurts the most, particularly fan events. Almost everything has fan events, a chance for producers, and retailers to show their wares, and create hype about their future products. Comic and Movie fans have Comic-con here in the states. A huge event in San Diego where everything geek merges into a giant 3 day hype event. All kinds of people show up at comic-con including celebrities, and people showing what they are going to be releasing over the next year or 2. Video game fans have E3 a major event showcasing what is coming out in games for up to 3 years out. With these release notes comes 1 major thing, fan hype. Call of Duty has not lost people wanting to buy it because Activision announced it 6 months early. People are pre ordering it, they are talking about it. They are posting on fan sites. The fans are creating hype that marketing cant.
Now Games Workshop has their Games Day. Let’s rewind one year, Games Day 2010. Dark Eldar where announced, the new models where shown, people went crazy, and to this day people call 2010 Games Day the best one Games Workshop has ever had. OK lets fats forward to this weekend. Games Workshop has changed their release policy. No announcement till 2 weeks before the release of a product. Games day 2011 is being call flat and boring, a few upset fans are even calling it a waste of money. While Forge world has announced new things, Games Workshop is holding true to their new policy. Other than Forge world everything else is old. Hey GW Space Marine was released at the beginning of the month, why are you treating it like it is soon to be released. Many fans are walking away wondering what you guys are thinking, or doing and why they just spent money to see nothing new.
Now it’s time for my opinion. I have a very strong opinion on this subject so be prepared. Games Workshop is making a huge mistake here. Their Hobby is expensive, and despite what they claim they are far from recession proof. Many people (me included) have felt the pressure of the current economy. Our money isn’t as free flowing as it was. We need to save money now to get things that are expensive. I once heard a GW Regional manager say people in this hobby will sacrifice anything for this hobby including eating. Now while I’m sure there are a few that way I bet if you look at the general fans they won’t do any such thing. So that being said let’s look at this. So Games Workshop is now going to give us 2 weeks’ notice before new products come out……..2 weeks. OK so I’m not sure how the rest of the world receives their paychecks, but I know here in the States 2 weeks isn’t long enough to save much money at all. Some people might not even receive a paycheck in those 2 weeks. So what does that mean for Games Workshop? It’s simple I think my Necrons are coming out soon, so I am saving my money for their release. In the process I am not buying Ogre Kingdoms, or any other models being released at this time. This is because I don’t want to miss the Necrons being released. Many Games Workshop fans are doing the same thing.
When the items become available for pre order will Games workshop be able to fulfill my order? Or will I not receive my order on release day? Ooh wait they don’t care they already have my money. That’s right I am going there, I am going to drag the skeleton out of the closet, and use it to beat the dead horse. Games workshops shipping and pre order sales are notoriously awful. I know people who pre ordered things and didn’t receive it for a month. I myself pre ordered a limited run item only to be told after its release that it was sold out and I could spend the money on something else???? They didn’t even offer me a refund, just told me to spend it on something else in the store. So what Games Workshop is saying is we can’t get our shipping right when people order months in advance, but give us 2 weeks and we will get it right? I don’t know about anyone else but this scares me. How do they know how much product to ship? Will they get pre orders correct? From their past history, I think they will fail and fail badly at this.
So in closing, here is what I think. 2 weeks isn’t long enough to create hype. Many players and fans won’t buy products out of fear they won’t have the money when something they like comes out. Games Workshop shipping fails when they have months to fulfill orders, can you imagine how bad weeks are going to be. In short I think Games Workshop is making a huge mistake with this new policy. How do you feel about it? Tell me by posting below.