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Ray_Bones
21-01-2008, 17:35
With the release of GW's half year figures tommorrow, I've been thinking about how a company goes about luring in new gamers. Specifically, how do you lure in gamers to a hobby that can be more time consuming and expensive than "plug and play" options like video and computer games?

I keep coming back to the idea of GW introducing a prepainted line to it's current offering of miniatures. While I understand that this is a very divisive idea in the current gaming community, I do think prepaints offer people the option of getting to the game itself much faster than the traditional route. Furthermore, the costs of modeling and painting miniatures are now gone from the potential gamer's horizon.

Given those two perks, there are naturally some downsides to the idea. One is the questionable quality of the miniatures themselves. Be it poor paint jobs, flimsy plastic or a lack of detail, pre painted minis are not the gorgeously sculpted minis that GW currently offers. Second is the argument that painting and modelling are core tenants to the hobby itself.

I understand that GW, specifically Jervis Johnson, has stated that pre painted minis are not in GW's future. Should they ever decide to go this route, which would be a big change of course, they would almost have to continue to produce and support the unpainted lines so as not to alienate the current core gamers. But given all this, and many points that I have not touched on, here's the question(s):

Where do you sit on the whole idea of pre painted minis and the idea of GW implementing them into their current product lines?

If not prepainted minis, what other ideas would you suggest to lure new players into the hobby?

Wolf Scout Ewan
21-01-2008, 18:34
SO much has been written about prepaints. Sculpt quality and material and sweat shop painters.

I dont want to sound like I dont care but I really think a introductory boxset of Orks and Imperial Guard like the BfM box would be a good lure, Toys r Us and other toyshop outlets to lure people in. If they can do it with stuff like Heroscape then I would say give it a go.

Lets look at theother games... Tannhauser Gate with its floorplans and nice figures, AT-43 with its nice looking figures and floorplans, HaloClix - shoddy figures but easy access game rules. Star Wars figure games. These are all very popular from what I hear... especially in the case of AT-43 the figures are actually not bad so its not like they wouldnt be able to replicate the quality.

What does everyone else think? Keep it civil please guys!

Temprus
21-01-2008, 18:50
I am into Inquisition but really have no interest in modeling nor painting up any IG or vehicles. Same with Eldar Aspect Warriors, I like the looks/style but their color schemes are not really my cup of tea as a painter. I would like to be able to buy them pre done so I could concentrate on the minis I DO want to paint up.

I own the first set of "History of Transformers" and some of the Gundam minis. Both "toys" are in height/size/bulk of the GW minis and are very well done. If GW did prepaints like that, I could just sign my whole paycheck over to them instead of just most of it. :D

Because I am pursuing the minis I want to model/paint first, I have about two full (short of vehicles) armies of IG and Eldar that will sit idly, possible forever. Maybe if I hit the lottery I can pay someone to paint them up. ;)

Ray_Bones
21-01-2008, 19:19
Lets look at theother games... Tannhauser Gate with its floorplans and nice figures, AT-43 with its nice looking figures and floorplans, HaloClix - shoddy figures but easy access game rules. Star Wars figure games. These are all very popular from what I hear... especially in the case of AT-43 the figures are actually not bad so its not like they wouldnt be able to replicate the quality.

What does everyone else think? Keep it civil please guys!

About a month ago, I purchased AT-43 and my debate on a Sci-Fi type game came down to AT-43 vs. 40k. As I weighed the pros and cons, here's what I came up with for AT-43

Pros:
1. Prepainted minis saves time and money - both of which are limited as I am already an avid fantasy player.
2. I played the game, albeit a simple version, the day I bought the minis and the rules set.
3. Probably the biggest reason - BALANCE. By balance, I mean, I have time to continue to paint and add to my dwarf army, while adding a new game to my overall hobby. AT-43 helps free up time to continue playing and painting dwarfs and even start a new WFB army, while not having to deal with painting armies for two difference game systems.

Cons:
1. Rackham, as a whole, has a wide array of issues from distribution to being in the French version of US Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
2. Support. There is no doubt that the clout, experience and size of GW makes it easier to support its game systems as opposed to a smaller gaming company.
3. Models. Probably a small "con" to me, but the models for 40k are more detailed than the AT-43 units.

Overall, the idea of quickly getting into the game is what brought me to AT-43 and what gave me the idea of GW going to some kind of prepainted version.

Finally, I do not want this thread to become a shouting match over pre painted vs. non-painted models. I look at this as a forum to discuss way to hook new gamers into GW and it's range of games, so to echo Wolf Scout Ewan, let's keep this civil.

Fred_Scuttle
21-01-2008, 20:37
I've always said - ANYTHING that expands the player base of the current game and or future editions without reducing the AVAILABLE modeling choices is a plus in my book.

In other words - making pre-painted Tampo or Decaled figures along the lines of the Space Marines from BFM available in a starter set and also in 3,5,10 man boxes would be a BIG boost IMHO.

People could assemble 500-750-1000 point forces, while not as powerful as those with Vehicles or other rare choices, they'd be fieldable.

Let the people who either by time or INTEREST don't want to paint figures have a way to make some simple troop based armines. Give them a 'leg into' the game. How many people would play chess if the only sets that were sold had solid hunks of balsa wood and an un-painted board? The majority of us enjoy the modeling and the gaming, but there are plenty of people who like just one side of the coin. Give the primary players an entry level set.

Let their interest rise - perhaps they'll become willing to build that Land Raider and paint it - or that Hive Tyrant.


As long - AS LONG - as the current and a healthy future line of build-paint-customize models was not sacrificed. Would really be a great combination as far as I'm concerned.

I for one would welcome our new pre-painted Overlords.:p

Fred

Llew
21-01-2008, 22:29
Even if they didn't want to go pre-paint, go with colored plastics on the molds with some snap-together kits for basic units. For god's sake, do something other than what they're doing.

I've been a proponent of a pre-painted variety of GW, but only some basic, core troops, or some SG-style games. Use them as a way to hook people, then let them get more involved in other aspects of the hobby if they want to.

Right now, GW demands that a new customer spend a huge amount of money on soldiers, supplies, scenery, etc. and a large chunk of time in assembly and painting before people get to see if they really even *like* "the hobby". That's just foolish.

scarletsquig
21-01-2008, 22:49
I can't really see the harm in making a 40k starter set with prepaints, even if they're not available for the rest of the range.

Main problem would be taking the hit to material quality. Pre-paints seem to require being made out of some absolutely horrific bendy rubbery plastic that can't hold sharp detail, is impossible to file/ cut, and generally feels like some cheap chinese toy.

Glabro
21-01-2008, 23:31
True enough about the material quality, if it really can't be solved. I'll still look at how the new Confrontation minis will look when they're out.

Anyway, a pre-painted stand-alone game in the vein of Space Crusade or Heroquest that could be sent to Wal-Mart and pushed on parents and beginners as well as veterans would be a good idea.

LuciusAR
21-01-2008, 23:35
No No No No No No!!!!!!!

Pre paints are most definably not the way forward for GW. The painting and modeling aspect of the Hobby is just too important and Pre paints would simply give the impression that Painting is a chore to be avoided, rather that one of the hobbies most crucial aspects.

Would it attract new blood? Quite possibly. Would it attract to kind of new blood who would eventually learn to love the painting aspect of the hobby and therefore stick with it long term? Doubtful.

Pre paints would invite lots of short terms gamers who would play the game far about 6 months before quiting, the sort of snotty brats who lack the patience to involve themselves in the hobby long term. Good for the short terms bottom line but a disaster for the long term stability and dignity of the hobby.

The final argument against pre paints can be seen at any branch of waterstones. Pick up a box of the D&D pre paints and be prepared to see what GW would be letting themselves in for if they went down this route. As an aside look at the price tag too. Kind of puts GW's prices in perspective doesn't it......

Llew
21-01-2008, 23:55
No No No No No No!!!!!!!

Pre paints are most definably not the way forward for GW. The painting and modeling aspect of the Hobby is just too important and Pre paints would simply give the impression that Painting is a chore to be avoided, rather that one of the hobbies most crucial aspects.

Would it attract new blood? Quite possibly. Would it attract to kind of new blood who would eventually learn to love the painting aspect of the hobby and therefore stick with it long term? Doubtful.

Pre paints would invite lots of short terms gamers who would play the game far about 6 months before quiting, the sort of snotty brats who lack the patience to involve themselves in the hobby long term. Good for the short terms bottom line but a disaster for the long term stability and dignity of the hobby.

The final argument against pre paints can be seen at any branch of waterstones. Pick up a box of the D&D pre paints and be prepared to see what GW would be letting themselves in for if they went down this route. As an aside look at the price tag too. Kind of puts GW's prices in perspective doesn't it......

Congratulations. You are exactly why wargaming GW-style is dying a slow, pathetic death.

Here's the thing -- there's no dignity in it. It's a game. It's a hobby. It's young men playing with toys growing up into older men playing with toys.

Try this on for size: very few people try out GW now. How much money does GW get out of everyone who never tries their games? $0.

A number of people try it, invest some money, play for a bit then Ebay their miniatures. That happens already. I have comfortable little LotR collection worth maybe $400 retail. I paid about $125 on Ebay for it. How much did GW get from me for LotR? $0.

Now...if they had a line of games that appealed to new players, and they drew a few in, they'd make some money off those. Say maybe 1 in 100 becomes a long-term GW gamer. They now have a customer from whom they'll get money for a decent length of time. The newbies will Ebay their pre-paints, which probably won't sell well on Ebay since no "real" hobbyist (read Alpha Nerd) would deign to pay money for them. The only people that would buy them are basically people who never have played before. Maybe 1 in 100 of those becomes a GW player.

Are you seeing a trend?

Now, while it's doubtful (in your estimation) that pre-paints would attract someone who would love to learn the entire hobby, it has a dramatically better chance of attracting them than GW's current lines which require huge outlays of money and time. (Think about it. It's not too expensive in cash to play a game with unpainted minis on a tabletop, but what's a realistic dollar figure and time investment to play the game you see advertised that picques your interest in GW wargaming? $500 and 200 hours for your half of the game, counting painted minis and terrain?)

There's a thread about a GW recruitment drive; I think you're management material.

Bloodknight
22-01-2008, 00:00
Prepaints were not the way forward for Rackham either (unless you are a US citizen who gets the figures cheaper than the rest of the world. I mean, we share a border with France and the prepainted RH stuff is disgustingly expensive compared to GW (30€ for 6 men compared to 30$ in the US)).

Llew
22-01-2008, 00:29
Well...it would seem that if you're going to do pre-paint stuff, you need to use a different production model than GW currently uses. I don't know how Rackham managed to bork it, since I haven't really followed them. I do know that Dark Heaven (I think) has some reasonable pre-paints at my FLGS for around $3 a mini. More empensive than a multi-pose plastic to be sure, but once you factor clipping and gluing alone, it's cheaper than GW. And also a lot less expensive than most single metal minis. Selection is very limited at present though.

I think Dwarven Forge also had some decent prepaints in sets for a while that weren't too expensive. The selection was also very limited.

If you don't love modelling and painting, you have to realize that those things are "cost" barriers to new players. Heck...they're cost barriers to old players who may even enjoy a certain amount of it.

RadiO
22-01-2008, 00:41
How about a 40k-universe skirmish game with a different ruleset, but full miniatures compatability with 40k?
Setting and concept:
Mordheim, transplanted to the 41st Millenium. Small, ragtag forces in a derelict city, cut off from higher authority, trying to survive and accomplish the last orders they got from HQ before the comlinks went down. A never-ending hell of snipers, radzones, shattered morals and callous inhumanity. The 40k difference, in other words. Everybody seems to like how dark the setting is, so play it up, not down.
Pick one chapter, regiment, unit or warband for a selection (or all) of the 40k armies. These will be the game's forces. Establish a consistent brand and personality for each of these.
For the sake of fun, establish in the setting that any player's force can fight any other force. For instance, have the SM force as the Marines Malevolent, so they can duff up Guardsmen with the scantiest of justifications and a smile on their lips.
By the same token - since everybody's cut off from HQ, and every force has elements of darkness in it, everybody can ally with everybody else. If a IG Lieutenant has lost all hope of getting him and his men out alive, and all that matters to him is accomplishing his mission, then maybe he won't feel so bad about working with dirty Xenos against a common threat. Can the Comissariat threaten, with death, a man who already counts himself as dead? And besides, those big chaps with purple power armour and a hydra on their shoulderguards seem like loyalist Space Marines, don't they... ?

Releases:
Starter Box: Rules, little bits of prepainted scenery, two small equal forces. Universal allies means that none of this stuff need go to waste if the player decides to build an army other than the ones in the starter box.
Squads and Support: Release 1 prepainted squad box for each force. Crucially, each box is configured to match a Troops choice from the appropriate 40k Codex. For each force, release one prepainted special item of roughly equal point cost (a SM Dreadnought, three basic Sentinels, Necron Destroyers etc).

Suppliment book:
Rules for expanding your force/forces with standard 40k models. Buy the 40k SM Commander box, paint him up, and then your Marines Malevolent can be led into battle by legendary 'hero' Captain Scumball with this profile. Equip your Guardsmen with heavy support - a Chimera IFV. Introduce something real nasty for the Tyranids.
So you're encouraging players to buy, build and paint GW's existing models, but as an expansion to the stuff they can get as prepaints. And on a smaller scale, because of the small forces per game, and the restricted scope of the city setting. Getting somebody to buy, assemble and paint an entire army before playing is a drag, expensive and generally a big ask. Getting somebody to fork out 8 for an army commander, and then build and paint him to lead a force they already own - or do the same with a single tank, maybe... That's got to be an easier sell.
And of course, anything you build or buy for this game will be fully game-legal for 40k, including the prepaints. And since those are built around Codex Troop choices, they'll slot right into your future 40k army.

Coragus
22-01-2008, 00:42
I don't necessarily need to see pre-paints, but I'd love it if the troops didn't have to be assembled. The Dwarfs in the Warhammer box are marginally less detailed, true, but to be able to snap the models into the base and play a game directly out of the box would have a huge benefit to game stores that want to run demo days. Plus, I spend a third of my time just putting together the miniatures in the first place. I'd love to devote that to other things.

Bloodknight
22-01-2008, 00:45
ow about 40k-universe skirmish game with a different ruleset, but full miniatures compatability with 40k?
Setting and concept:
Mordheim, transplanted to the 41st Millenium. Small, ragtag forces in a derelict city, cut off from higher authority, trying to survive and accomplish the last orders they got from HQ before the comlinks went down. A never-ending hell of snipers, radzones, shattered morals and callous inhumanity. The 40k difference, in other words. Everybody seems to like how dark the setting is, so play it up, not down.
Pick one chapter, regiment, unit or warband for a selection (or all) of the 40k armies. Establish a consistent brand and personality for each of these.

That's pretty much Necromunda, ie it already exists in some form :)

Gaebriel
22-01-2008, 00:47
No No No No No No!!!!!!!

[snip snip snap]


See, this is part of the attitude that made GW what it is - a company without growth, dying a slow death. Where is the dignity in becoming wargaming's example of how not to do it?

Apart from other problems, the target market of dedicated hobbyists seems to shrink, so GW needs to either shrink with it, or try out new ways.

I see no problem with introducing a prepainted line next to the quality sets, they could go for average quality, and sell it at a low margin or even treat it as a loss-leader to draw in beginners.

No one will stop the more dedicated customers to still put in all their effort, and it's not like the prepaints will be challenging in quality - I'm also sure many of those who are uncomfortable with their opponent's unpainted armies will be glad to play against colours instead of silver and grey.

As I see it, the only reason to be against prepaints would come from a snobby and elitist crowd, who wouldn't want any mundane hobbyist to enter their hallowed ranks. I think there is no need for that elitism. Be assured, your work, beautiful as it is (that's a genuine compliment), doesn't need a contrast to be held against, it usually stands for itself.

RadiO
22-01-2008, 01:19
That's pretty much Necromunda, ie it already exists in some form :)

But in one crucial respect, this would be different.
Necromunda is gangs. Necromunda, while it's a fine game with fine models and a distinguished history, has almost no crossover potential with mainstream 40k at all. You could sell it as a prepaints game, easily. It's got some really good features for that - wicked setting, restricted scope, very individual design style, and strongly delinated forces in the different gangs. It'd work great, no doubt.
But what it wouldn't be is a "gateway" into 40k itself.
Say there was a Necromunda prepaints game - you buy it, knowing nothing about 40k, and you like it. You build yourself a gang with all the trimmings, and play many entertaining games. And then you think, "Wow, this setting kicks ass, I've got to learn more about it." You find out about 40k proper, and decide to give it a go...
And then you have to start all over again, from scratch.
Nothing you bought for Necromunda can really be used in 40k. Nothing you learned about your gang really applies to 40k. You have to buy everything, paint it, and build an army basically on blind faith, just like you do now.
But, if you were playing a 40k-set prepaints game, with real codex-compatable forces... Well, half the job's done. You have a couple of squads of infantry, a big support item, and maybe a tank and a commander you bought and painted yourself. All of which can be used in 40k, without any modification. And they're your guys. Maybe lots of other people have the same minatures with the same paintjob, but this is your army, you've fought with it before. They're veterans.
With a 40k-set skirmish game, GW can sell the same models to two sets of people, which has to be better than selling them to just the one set of folks who play straight 40k.

RavenMorpheus
22-01-2008, 02:17
With the release of GW's half year figures tommorrow, I've been thinking about how a company goes about luring in new gamers. Specifically, how do you lure in gamers to a hobby that can be more time consuming and expensive than "plug and play" options like video and computer games?

I keep coming back to the idea of GW introducing a prepainted line to it's current offering of miniatures. While I understand that this is a very divisive idea in the current gaming community, I do think prepaints offer people the option of getting to the game itself much faster than the traditional route. Furthermore, the costs of modeling and painting miniatures are now gone from the potential gamer's horizon.

Given those two perks, there are naturally some downsides to the idea. One is the questionable quality of the miniatures themselves. Be it poor paint jobs, flimsy plastic or a lack of detail, pre painted minis are not the gorgeously sculpted minis that GW currently offers. Second is the argument that painting and modelling are core tenants to the hobby itself.

I understand that GW, specifically Jervis Johnson, has stated that pre painted minis are not in GW's future. Should they ever decide to go this route, which would be a big change of course, they would almost have to continue to produce and support the unpainted lines so as not to alienate the current core gamers. But given all this, and many points that I have not touched on, here's the question(s):

Where do you sit on the whole idea of pre painted minis and the idea of GW implementing them into their current product lines?

If not prepainted minis, what other ideas would you suggest to lure new players into the hobby?

Yeah lets take all the individualism out of the game and make sure noobs have no idea what an individual customised army is like...

Prepainting mini's for GW games is wrong imo, the whole aspect of the painting of them makes the hobby more than just a bunch of dice rolls and tactics.

Course they could just produce plastic "pre-painted" models in the way "action figures" are produced but then they'd have to raise the price to an even more astronomical level...

Crazy Harborc
22-01-2008, 02:25
IMHO, without pre-painted minies a (I know, unknown) number of potential players who might have tried it will not. The prepainted minies would appeal to the "no time for painting" potential players.

I know, I know......that is likely only one or two more potential players. 3 in 100 instead of the (now) 1 in 100. Naawwww.....why do anything to attract more potential players than 1 in 100??:rolleyes:

Llew
22-01-2008, 03:15
We don't need new players! It's much cooler if the wider world has no interest in our hobby! Sustain it by driving it underground!

thearchiver
22-01-2008, 03:15
I have 1500 point worth of eldar 75% painted, 1500 IG unpaited, 3000 empire unpaited, 1400 SM unpaited, 1000 Tau unpaited, and 5000 painted SM.

So while I do paint I tend to buy faster then I paint, I also tend to buy armies in one go.

So if pre paints came along that where of the average painters standard im guessing I would like a few others buy even more, with the idea of being able to add to armies while not increasing my painting back log. And if the pre paints where able to be painted over all the better, so when I clear my backlog I can then go over or just add detail to my pre paints to make them my own.

At this point in time I would pay a 25% premium if models came mold line free and undercoated.

Ray_Bones
22-01-2008, 03:18
Yeah lets take all the individualism out of the game and make sure noobs have no idea what an individual customised army is like...

Course they could just produce plastic "pre-painted" models in the way "action figures" are produced but then they'd have to raise the price to an even more astronomical level...

No one is really arguing to remove all unpainted models and completely replace them with pre paints. Most, and I would include myself in this, feel that prepaints are good supplements to the existing lines. For example, include pre paints in the starter set or introduce certain core troops as pre paints. At best, I think all we could expect to see would be some hybrid type offering where you see core troops pre painted and special/rare troops and characters still unpainted.

How does that detract from army individualism?

Lars Porsenna
22-01-2008, 03:30
Personally, if the options were pre-painted core troops and unpainted special characters, this would mean no options for me.

Yes, it does reduce customizability. Now my HE are only in white and blue color schemes (no white and red color schemes for you!), and all the eldar would be Iyanden or such. No chance for Saim-hann (or worse, the Guardians are Biel-tan and the jetbikes Saim-hann, etc).

You know, some people that have been involved with the minis hobby for a very long time feel a bit threatened by pre-paints. In many cases they're cheaper than unpainted and ... well ... painted. The fear is that for big scale wargames (like FREX Warhammer) if they go pre-paint, those that prefer to paint their own stuff, convert, or customize will find their hobby go obsolete. Look at Rackham. Sure they cheesed off their long-time painter base but...who cares? I'm sure they're banking on the profits of the instant-gratification crowd.

Damon.

Wikhed
22-01-2008, 04:08
Battle Force box sets could be "pre-painted" by using a similar method used by Lego in the injection molding process. Pump the price up by 15 to 20 dollars and add a mini rule book that's in the Battle for Macragge box. All the rest of the product line could stay the same as it is right now. By getting peoples feet wet and encouraging the model and painting aspect will encourage growth into our hobby.

Night Bearer
22-01-2008, 04:26
I think people would still complain about pre-paints, however. More than likely, if GW ever did go that route, people would complain that:

a) they're not detailed enough,
b) they're too expensive,
c) GW doesn't provide Troop X in the right color scheme for my chapter / hive fleet / Empire state / etc.

Although it's tempting to see them as effective shortcuts for new players to get into the hobby and existing players to expand / fill out their armies, I don't really see it meshing well together.

I mean, if you're happy with pre-paints and just want to game, you're probably not going to want to spend a lot of money on paint just to paint up 1 or 3 "special" figures/units, especially if you weren't wanting to spend that to paint your entire army, and especially if you have no rank and file to train yourself on before tackling your heroes and elites.

On the other hand, if you're someone actually into the hobby end, you probably won't like how the pre-paints look next to your painted armies, and if GW didn't support "hobbyist" models for any pre-paints they come out with, I can imagine a lot of vets being upset, and of late GW doesn't seem to be in the mood to tolerate much duplicate model support....

Also, and we'll have to see how Rackham turns out with their games, but isn't like every pre-paint minis game (admittedly I'm thinking of all the HeroClix type games) based on the same random packaging / collectability factor like Magic: the Gathering? I can't see veteran GW hobbyists being too thrilled if GW went that route (not that they'd have to, of course).

Brandir
22-01-2008, 07:11
GW have looked at pre-paints in the past. Their research showed that people buying into pre-paints are not held by the hobby for long. Investing time and effort into painting minis means that people are more likely to stay in the hobby longer term.

Personally I wouldn't mind pre-paints if the quality of the models was the same as GW plastics now. In my opinion all the pre paints suffer from very shoddy models.

Glabro
22-01-2008, 10:22
Arrg, somehow people can't get their heads around the idea that GW used to be a GAMES Workshop one time, producing games, and exploring in pre-paints doesn't have to mean supplanting existing ranges.

New, simple, fun games are cool, too.

Osbad
22-01-2008, 10:29
GW see themselves as selling "the hobby". That hobby is assembling and painting little plastic men.

If they took up prepaints they would have to become a "games company" again and acknowledge that the basic game and the quality of it is a matter of importance and not just a means to sell more model soldiers.

It is that psychology that is blocking them I think. Like many posters here, they can't seem to get there heads around the fact that there are many potential customers for whom collecting, building and painting up a mega-death 40k army of doom isn't the be-all and end-all of life!

Personally I believe their logic is flawed and would be happy to see them release prepaints as part of a strategy to reach out to less .... "dedicated" potential customers who may also like different games or alternative hobbies, but for now they don't seem to believe that it has any synergies with their unpainted product. Despite the evidence (in the form of many painting services out there that thrive on painting up GW product for money) to the contrary they just have a blind spot in trying to reach the needs/wants of potential customers who want to play games but have no interest in the "craft" element of "the hobby". With GW its all or nothing. Which to me seems a little myopic. Sure there'd be problems with implementation - they don't want to cannibalise existing sales of unpainted stock, but I (as a non-expert, admittedly) don't see those problems as intrangible.

There's a good mantra in business that "the more value added you can sell your customer, the more profit you can make". That is true because of economies of scale. It works because the customer knows how much money, time and effort they would have to put in to convert the raw material into the finished product and are prepared to pay up to that point, while the producer can do it much more cheaply because they have a production line set up for that purpose. That holds true for everying from freezer ready-meals to house renovation, to car servicing.The more work you do on a product the more profit you can squeeze out of your customer. Why should GW's "special niche market" customers behave any differently? Sure many of them like things just as they are, but would they really disappear if limited prepainted alternatives became easily available? I personally don't believe it.

LuciusAR
22-01-2008, 10:35
Congratulations. You are exactly why wargaming GW-style is dying a slow, pathetic death.

As opposed to what? What other wargaming company has gone down this route and attracted more players resulting in long term success, None.


Here's the thing -- there's no dignity in it. It's a game. It's a hobby. It's young men playing with toys growing up into older men playing with toys.

Rubbish. The 'toys' I play with are the result of the hard work and dedication in trying out new modeling and painting techniques. Even those people I know who don't play the game compliment me o the skill and dedication it take to make an Army. This is one of the most important aspects of the hobby, arguably more important than the game itself. GW sell allot of models on the basis of people wanting to paint them alone. Introduce pre-paints and we may as well be playing the game with Lego men. You may be happy for GW to whoring themselves as yu-gi-oh or (god help us) Hero-clix but I and many gamers am not.


Try this on for size: very few people try out GW now. How much money does GW get out of everyone who never tries their games? $0.

A number of people try it, invest some money, play for a bit then Ebay their miniatures. That happens already. I have comfortable little LotR collection worth maybe $400 retail. I paid about $125 on Ebay for it. How much did GW get from me for LotR? $0.

So what, they made their money from the original sale and assuming you like it you are likely to buy more straight from them in the future. Not sure what this has to do with pre-paints.


Now...if they had a line of games that appealed to new players, and they drew a few in, they'd make some money off those. Say maybe 1 in 100 becomes a long-term GW gamer. They now have a customer from whom they'll get money for a decent length of time. The newbies will Ebay their pre-paints, which probably won't sell well on Ebay since no "real" hobbyist (read Alpha Nerd) would deign to pay money for them. The only people that would buy them are basically people who never have played before. Maybe 1 in 100 of those becomes a GW player.

Are you seeing a trend?

Now, while it's doubtful (in your estimation) that pre-paints would attract someone who would love to learn the entire hobby, it has a dramatically better chance of attracting them than GW's current lines which require huge outlays of money and time. (Think about it. It's not too expensive in cash to play a game with unpainted minis on a tabletop, but what's a realistic dollar figure and time investment to play the game you see advertised that picques your interest in GW wargaming? $500 and 200 hours for your half of the game, counting painted minis and terrain?)

Irrelevant. Ok GW is not a cheap hobby in terms of money or time. It consumes both and it takes a certain person to have the pateince to commit to this. GW never has been a hobby that appeals to the masses, hence the reason they don't advertise, there simply isn't the point.

Its a better strategy to have the hobby this way from the outset. What sense is there in showing the hobby to potential gamers as being something it isn't. Please note my use of the word 'hobby' not 'game', of which painting is a core aspect. Pre-paints turn this into a 'game'.

And my main point again painting and modeling is a vital aspect of the hobby. A great experience that brings out the best qualities of GW hobbyists. Painting should be one of the things that attracts new hobbyist. It is not a embarrassing side effect to be ashamed of or hidden away. The requirement of hobbyist to paint must be made clear from the outset. Anything else is a betrayal of the hobby.


There's a thread about a GW recruitment drive; I think you're management material.

On the contrary I am as unhappy with GW as many on this board. I am mainly unhappy that GW seems more interested in chasing the wrong kind new short term hobbyists than right kind of long term hobbyists. Which is exactly what introducing pre-paints would encourage. Does it make me an Alpha Geek that Im not interested in seeing GW become the next Pokemon? If so then I'm a damn proud alpha geek.

Osbad
22-01-2008, 10:43
Its a better strategy to have the hobby this way from the outset. What sense is there in showing the hobby to potential gamers as being something it isn't. Please note my use of the word 'hobby' not 'game', of which painting is a core aspect. Pre-paints turn this into a 'game'.

So who says that we are talking about GW releasing prepainted models for 40k? That's two steps of assumption that we weren't talking about right there! Would you be so anti-prepaints for a different, new, game like Necromunda? If GW, and not Fantasy Flight had released Tannhauser, would you be still so aggressively narrow-minded about it?

And what if GW did become a "games" company again instead of the "hobby" company it is right now. Would that be so wrong. Do you have a problem with them developing new and interesting games for some reason?

I'm old enough to remember when GW used to be a "games company", long before even the first edition of Warhammer was released, and long before they got into bed with Citadel. Those were fun times.

"Gamers" may have a different hobby to "hobbyists", but it is just as valid and their money still spends just as well...

Wolf Scout Ewan
22-01-2008, 13:20
Necromunda / Warhammer Quest hybrid? Floorplans and prepaints. One set for fantasy and one for 40k.

I would like to see this.

A new warhammer quest rpg thing with floorplans and prepaint figs.

A new 40k "escape from hell" game with floorplans: A lone space marine tries to lead a ragtag bunch of civvies and Imperial Guard out of a Chaoszombie/Tyranid Hive/insert alien here infested city.

Osbad
22-01-2008, 13:29
GW have looked at pre-paints in the past. Their research showed that people buying into pre-paints are not held by the hobby for long. Investing time and effort into painting minis means that people are more likely to stay in the hobby longer term.

Which is probably true, but why is that a problem for GW? To be flippant, they seem to be quite happy to focus exclusively on n00bs at the moment with their existing product (when was the last time you ever saw any vet-love in WD for instance), so the prepainted market would appear to be ideal for them! :)

RFT
22-01-2008, 13:43
It's not wargaming, but Consider Revell's range of "Easykits" (http://www.revell.de/en/products/model_kits/easykit/star_wars/index.html?&L=1) - that shows a model (ahem) that GW could follow- that of models painted and tampoed on the sprue, but end-user assembled (snap-fit). detail doesn't suffer so much this way.

I don't think people are put off from painting by the expense of it, it's the time, and the fact that it takes so much practice (more than one army) to get to a good level - it took me 5 years and countless minatures before I was happy with my results.

Similarly- the requirement to have a painted army is a severe disincentive to people who just want to play a game - how many people must walk past the display windows of GW stores and be both impressed, but incredibly daunted at the same time?

Pre-painted minis wouldn't mean the end of the hobby as we know it, the same way that the Revell easykits haven't meant the end of traditional plastic car/plane/starwars models. but they might help someone get started, and not get overwhelmed at the first hurdle...

Templar Ben
22-01-2008, 14:10
You know since GW doesn't plan to advance the storyline, the Mordhiem 40K could be Medusa V. Everyone knows it was destroyed but since it doesn't matter there could be little groups cut off (sort of like Twilight 2000) and that would allow for mixing and matching.

I think it would be great to have the units be different than the core troops though. Like instead of just making some prepaint Cadians perhaps a prepaint unit of engineseer exploreres that can be used in an IG army as a troop. I really don't see GW maintaining two levels of the same unit.

I think the fear of prepaints is because it is different and it takes away that barrier that they easily pass. Who really fights against prepaints? People that say that they are great painters and have people tell them so. Prepaints would have those people feeling just a bit less special.

Lezta
22-01-2008, 14:21
I'm in the GW should make a new game with it - could even be a new IP - camp.

Why? Because GW need something they can get into other shops, like supermarkets to attract people. The RPG market is beginning to realise this too and we'll start seeing boxed games turning up again so they can be better sold to get people into the hobby.

A single, boxed game that can and will be sold in places like Tesco is the way forward to help the hobby. Hell, even the starter boxes for 40k and Fantasy would work.

RFT
22-01-2008, 14:38
I think the fear of prepaints is because it is different and it takes away that barrier that they easily pass. Who really fights against prepaints? People that say that they are great painters and have people tell them so. Prepaints would have those people feeling just a bit less special.

pre-decorated (I hesitate to use the words painted) are never going ot be of the top-drawer standard, and are at best going to be basecoat and details - great painters will still be great painters, and will still be hailed as such.

Templar Ben
22-01-2008, 14:58
I agree but they fear they will lose a lot of the elite status that they currently enjoy.

Ray_Bones
22-01-2008, 15:07
Rubbish. The 'toys' I play with are the result of the hard work and dedication in trying out new modeling and painting techniques. Even those people I know who don't play the game compliment me o the skill and dedication it take to make an Army. This is one of the most important aspects of the hobby, arguably more important than the game itself.

Irrelevant. Ok GW is not a cheap hobby in terms of money or time. It consumes both and it takes a certain person to have the pateince to commit to this. GW never has been a hobby that appeals to the masses, hence the reason they don't advertise, there simply isn't the point.

Its a better strategy to have the hobby this way from the outset. What sense is there in showing the hobby to potential gamers as being something it isn't. Please note my use of the word 'hobby' not 'game', of which painting is a core aspect. Pre-paints turn this into a 'game'.



I'm not trying to pile on Lucius, but I want to make a few points about your comments above:

1. Isn't it a bit disingenuous for GW to sell this package on the basis of playing a game, but the stipulation being that to actually play the game requires hours of assembly and, potentially, painting. This is to say nothing of the incremental costs associated with doing this. For a new gamer, it has to be intimidating and, potentially, off-putting given that you need a good chunk of time on top of the costs, to even get to put an army on the table. I'm not sure what the exact numbers are, but what is the timeline like for someone to start an army and the game from scratch and get to actually playing the game? My guess is that we're talking months here and that, in itself, is a deterrent to even starting this in the first place. Personally, it took me about three months to get my dwarf army up and on the table for a 1000 point game. That's a lot of time before I even played one game.

2. The issue that keeps cropping up here is one of game vs. hobby. Given the size of the GW customer base, it's fair to say that you have people on both sides of the fence. I don't think this debate needs to be a major focus of attention, as I think a hybrid approach to prepaints could help ease eveyone's concern. By hybrid, I'm saying only use the prepaints as supplements to your existing product lines. Offer some core units as pre-paints, continue to support all of your upainted lines and help introduce new gamers by giving them prepainted core units coupled with all the painting and modelling that comes with the special units/characters. GW could continue to roll out unpainted minis for core choices (I'm assuming they would have the financial bandwidth to do this - a questionable assumption, but then this whole thread is theoretical).

3. When you say "prepaints turn this into a game" - my question is, isn't that the point for most of us? I know there are those that feel that collecting and painting trumps the game itself but I can't help but feel that the gaming side of the hobby is what drew most of us in, and keeps most of us going. Look at these boards as an example - most of the threads relate to army composition, tactics and unit discussions. You have major tournaments around the world and entire gaming clubs dedicated to playing the game. IMHO, and not to diminish the modelling aspect, the game is just as critical to the overall hobby.

Again, I'm not piling on, just throwing out my thoughts.

Osbad
22-01-2008, 15:18
I'm not trying to pile on Lucius, but I want to make a few points about your comments above:

1. Isn't it a bit disingenuous for GW to sell this package on the basis of playing a game, but the stipulation being that to actually play the game requires hours of assembly and, potentially, painting.

Good point, well said!

Last time I walked past my local GW store it had a whopping sign outside saying "Free Gaming Inside". Which is of course only part of the truth. If instead they had a sign up saying "Free Modelling and Painting Inside" how much business would they lose?

For GW to attract people into their world with the promise of a game, only to lose them again when they find out that in order to game they have to learn to paint is a bit ... wasteful at the very least!

Misfratz
22-01-2008, 19:41
I'm surprised that no-one has mentioned the little boxes of snap-together models that GW started selling a couple of years ago. That would appear to have been an attempt to explore this sort of route.

Just before then I saw one of the sculptors at the Exeter GW, working on a 3-up of a Cadian Guardsman (this was at the time of the Sisters of Battle release), which he said was for the "booster" snap-fit sets. However, no such set has been released, and, indeed, there has been no follow-up to the initial release whatsoever. I hypothesise that the sales on the snap fit boxes were poor, so GW decided to avoid the cost of making new moulds for sets for other armies (like the IG).

If my hypothesis is correct, then the snap-fit models obviously do not appeal, either to relatively new gamers, or long-term hobbyists. (ASIDE: This might be because they were more expensive per model. Can't say for certain) I would extrapolate that the same would be true of pre-painted models, with the additional problem that pre-paints would look strange alongside other models that were not pre-paints, whereas the snap-fits are not so noticeably different.

For the starter sets, the snap-fit is essential. You can assemble the models, and play games with them, relatively quickly. Beyond that, it does not look like anyone is interested.

I have long been an advocate of GW making newer, simpler, games to introduce new people to their games, without landing them the task of building an army straight away. I'm not convinced pre-paints are the way to go with those, either. Coloured plastics, that could be painted over (ie all one colour), would be better, and enough to distinguish one side from another. (Indeed, this was the case with the "Space Marine" starter set for Epic, that contained blue Eldar, green Marines and grey Orks)

What role are computer games playing in attracting new people to GW? Is there a GW advert leaflet inside the box with "Dawn of War", for example?

Maybe such games are the modern equivalent of HeroQuest?

Gaebriel
22-01-2008, 20:01
I have a bit of a problem with why people should feel threatened by an additional prepainted line.

GW wouldn't take anything away from those more craft-orientated hobbyists, just giving something to the more game-orientated ones. It's like, say, feeling threatened by an Ork-army release just because I do not play Orks.

At the end of the day, with an expected higher player-base, and more painted armies on the table, everyone would win.

Why would the craft-part of the hobby be "made obsolete" by an additional prepainted line (again the emphasis of not taking away the established product)? This makes only sense if those craft-orientated hobbyists thought the true reward of the hobby would lie within - difficult to phrase this neutrally - being better than other hobbyists, or being higher in an established pecking order. But shouldn't the reward really lie in the act of performing the craft itself?

Or does it have to do with the myth that people who aren't into the craft are bad and obnoxious players?

If I may say so : it's a strange culture that GW has put forth in the last two decades...

Templar Ben
22-01-2008, 20:24
I'm surprised that no-one has mentioned the little boxes of snap-together models that GW started selling a couple of years ago. That would appear to have been an attempt to explore this sort of route.

Just before then I saw one of the sculptors at the Exeter GW, working on a 3-up of a Cadian Guardsman (this was at the time of the Sisters of Battle release), which he said was for the "booster" snap-fit sets. However, no such set has been released, and, indeed, there has been no follow-up to the initial release whatsoever. I hypothesise that the sales on the snap fit boxes were poor, so GW decided to avoid the cost of making new moulds for sets for other armies (like the IG).

If my hypothesis is correct, then the snap-fit models obviously do not appeal, either to relatively new gamers, or long-term hobbyists. (ASIDE: This might be because they were more expensive per model. Can't say for certain) I would extrapolate that the same would be true of pre-painted models, with the additional problem that pre-paints would look strange alongside other models that were not pre-paints, whereas the snap-fits are not so noticeably different.

For the starter sets, the snap-fit is essential. You can assemble the models, and play games with them, relatively quickly. Beyond that, it does not look like anyone is interested.

I have long been an advocate of GW making newer, simpler, games to introduce new people to their games, without landing them the task of building an army straight away. I'm not convinced pre-paints are the way to go with those, either. Coloured plastics, that could be painted over (ie all one colour), would be better, and enough to distinguish one side from another. (Indeed, this was the case with the "Space Marine" starter set for Epic, that contained blue Eldar, green Marines and grey Orks)

What role are computer games playing in attracting new people to GW? Is there a GW advert leaflet inside the box with "Dawn of War", for example?

Maybe such games are the modern equivalent of HeroQuest?

The snap together for BfM are no where near the prepaints you can get for say D&D. I don't think they should make D&D minis btw. A single pose already made hardplastic mini would be great.

The thing is if it were green plastic orks and blue plastic space marines would you be allowed to play those at a GW store? To me, that would be the real test to see if GW is on board with the idea.

My DoW didn't have a leaflet that I recall but there was a page the mentioned Games Workshop in the manual. The people I know that play DoW first are disappointed in how the tabletop game plays. You don't have the options on the table that you do with the videogame.


I have a bit of a problem with why people should feel threatened by an additional prepainted line.

GW wouldn't take anything away from those more craft-orientated hobbyists, just giving something to the more game-orientated ones. It's like, say, feeling threatened by an Ork-army release just because I do not play Orks.

At the end of the day, with an expected higher player-base, and more painted armies on the table, everyone would win.

Why would the craft-part of the hobby be "made obsolete" by an additional prepainted line (again the emphasis of not taking away the established product)? This makes only sense if those craft-orientated hobbyists thought the true reward of the hobby would lie within - difficult to phrase this neutrally - being better than other hobbyists, or being higher in an established pecking order. But shouldn't the reward really lie in the act of performing the craft itself?

Or does it have to do with the myth that people who aren't into the craft are bad and obnoxious players?

If I may say so : it's a strange culture that GW has put forth in the last two decades...

As I said above, the real test would be what GW would allow in a store. If I picked up several prepainted GW minis would I be allowed to run that in the store?

Gaebriel
22-01-2008, 20:40
...
As I said above, the real test would be what GW would allow in a store. If I picked up several prepainted GW minis would I be allowed to run that in the store?
If they wouldn't, wouldn't GW seem a bit hypocritical? As concluded here and there, part of the costs of GW's products includes the offer of gaming space, and I doubt they would low-price their prepaints to factor that out.

I think the only way of making prepaints a successful endeavour would be to completely integrate them into their lines. Thus prepaints useable within the main systems, and of the same 'status' than the other models.

Everything else would not only fail in breaking up the "elitist-threshold" (suggest another word, if you feel offended), but lead to even deeper breaches within the community - extremely counterproductive.

All in all I'm getting the impression that the main problem for the acceptance of prepainted models wouldn't lie with the new customers buying them, but with those customers not buying them (especially with the die hard - "I'd rather die with my hobby, before I see it changing"-types)

DonkeyMan
22-01-2008, 20:41
Personally I think that an additional prepainted line would do GW good.

But the problem with GW right now is that they really don't have that much money for experiments.
And looking at GW's past. They are not really a company that does risky things. I think doing LotR was the most risky thing I saw them do.

I can't see GW going prepainted, because they are afraid to loose to much money on it and worsen the situation.

Templar Ben
22-01-2008, 20:50
If they wouldn't, wouldn't GW seem a bit hypocritical? As concluded here and there, part of the costs of GW's products includes the offer of gaming space, and I doubt they would low-price their prepaints to factor that out.

I think the only way of making prepaints a successful endeavour would be to completely integrate them into their lines. Thus prepaints useable within the main systems, and of the same 'status' than the other models.

Everything else would not only fail in breaking up the "elitist-threshold" (suggest another word, if you feel offended), but lead to even deeper breaches within the community - extremely counterproductive.

All in all I'm getting the impression that the main problem for the acceptance of prepainted models wouldn't lie with the new customers buying them, but with those customers not buying them (especially with the die hard - "I'd rather die with my hobby, before I see it changing"-types)

I brought that up because so many have said that they were actively discouraged from playing SG in GW stores. So would GW gain enough in revenue to offset the cost of starting up the prepaints as well as the lost sales of painting related lines? I think so but I would also presume that the prepaints would be geared for the Tescos and WalMarts of the world where you would have huge volumes and GW could focus on how to paint and convert your prepaints to transition some of those gamers into the full line of products.

Lord Damocles
22-01-2008, 20:55
Or does it have to do with the myth that people who aren't into the craft are bad and obnoxious players?

I'm afraid that I'm going to have to make myself rather unpopular now. :(Speaking purely from my own (admitadly 'narrow') experience, I've actually found the above to be true to an extent.

Now obviously not everyone is into the painting/modelling side of the hobby, and thats absolutely fine. Nobody is going to argue that you should have to be a great painter to be able to play the game(s). However... most of the obnoxious players who I've encountered have been the sort for whom winning the game (at any cost) comes before collecting/painting the army.

If GW were to release a prepainted line, they'd have to walk the very fine line between appealing to younger gamers, or those who for whatever reason don't want to get into the painting/modelling aspect (which I'll repeat is fine by me), and appealing to those who will 'abuse' the game - which isn't good for any of us.

Cue the abuse...

Gaebriel
22-01-2008, 21:08
I'm afraid that I'm going to have to make myself rather unpopular now. ...
You're just having an opinion.

Could it be that people with an obnoxious play style who also have an unpainted army are more memorizable than those obnoxious with a painted army? Or, are we willing to forgive more to those who otherwise show a conforming behaviour? It would not be the first time that human prejudice would be unmasked as misconception by hard numbers. Sadly, we don't have those hard numbers. (Just a thesis here.)

I'm wondering whether the niche that GW created for itself really is smaller than what they would have wanted. On the other hand, perhaps they and we should be content with a rather small market, downsize to a sustainable level and cut out the idea of growth? Should GW have ever went the PLC way, when trying to act within such small brackets?

I'm getting OT a bit, but I think the prepaint question is as much a question of (corporate) philosophy as well as of feasabiity.

RavenMorpheus
22-01-2008, 22:04
GW have looked at pre-paints in the past. Their research showed that people buying into pre-paints are not held by the hobby for long. Investing time and effort into painting minis means that people are more likely to stay in the hobby longer term.

Exactly.

Another point on this is that the pre-paints wouldn't be cheap at all, they'd be aimed at little johnny with the bank account of mega rich mummy and daddy whose latest 5 minute craze is GW. 5 minutes later he's forgotten all about GW and picked up on something else - not good for the longevity of GW imo, but then it's all about the big bucks these days so the average "I can only afford a bit of the hobby now and then because I live in the real world and have to pay bills" gamer doesn't get a look in.

Imo pre-paints are not worth the money, or time and effort GW would put into them, they would be much better off recruiting gamers who'll stay in the hobby and take up all aspects of it.

Course the only way that'll happen is if there's a sudden price drop, certainly here in the UK - like that'll happen any time soon :rolleyes:


I'm surprised that no-one has mentioned the little boxes of snap-together models that GW started selling a couple of years ago.

No one mentions them because they were shocking, they have to be the worst models ever, the Marines they did (I'm assuming we're talking about the marines with the bolters that snapped on the front) were so devoid of detail and badly moulded it wasn't even worth giving them more that a dip in a pot of paint and leaving them at that, not necessarily the sculptors fault though, more the brief they were given and the moulding processes used.

I don't know about anyone else but I like to see models with plenty of detail, even if they are a challenge to paint.

The whole ethos of the GW hobby has been the fact that you can say I collected that army and I made an effort to paint it myself. I can see with pre-paints that mege bucks mummy and daddy kids'll turn up to tournies and GW games days with their prepainted armies and go "look at my huge army I bought" and that's all that'll happen, it won't benefit the hobby or expand it in anyway, it'll just allow lazy rich kids to hijack the hobby and those of us who put some effort in won't even get a look in.

Sorry started to rant there a bit :D

LuciusAR
23-01-2008, 00:06
Don't worry I don't feel piled on.

Firstly I'm not against new blood in the hobby, of course new gamers are required for the hoby to survive. I'm only worried that GW are attracting the right kind of new player. I totally accept that new players should be eased into the hobby but I honestly believe that pre-paints are not the way forward in this regard.

Mainly because the implication of pre paints is that painting is a chore to be avoided rather than a vital aspect of the hobby to be cherished. It turns the hobby into a cheap quick thrill as opposed to the satisfying result of many hours of work. A bit like a quick blast on Dawn of War, its great but lacks the satisfaction of playing 40K for real. Pre paints are also of inferior quality and lack the personality that can only come from painting ones own army. Look at the D&D pre paints if you doubt this.

Of course I understand that this would only be for starter sets and therefore this point may be moot, however seeing as all gamers starting with pre-paints would eventually have to start painting why not start as we mean to go on and make it clear to all potential new gamers what a vital part of the hobby painting is?

Regarding the difference between Game and Hobby the way I see it is that the hobby is is a multi faced creature involving many aspects that make up the whole, of which the Game is just one part, albeit the (arguably) biggest. A game is something like Risk, theres nothing wrong with Risk but its not what I expect from GW.

Crazy Harborc
23-01-2008, 03:17
If GW's research department decides that there is money to be made from selling pre-painted minies......It WILL happen.;) It will be a business decision that will be good for the stockholder's dividends.

Lars Porsenna
23-01-2008, 03:59
If GW's research department decides that there is money to be made from selling pre-painted minies......It WILL happen.;) It will be a business decision that will be good for the stockholder's dividends.

And just as that is a truism, if they decide that prepaints are more profitable than unpainted product, then no more unpainted product. This is the main concern IMHO.

Also LucasAR said:


It turns the hobby into a cheap quick thrill as opposed to the satisfying result of many hours of work. A bit like a quick blast on Dawn of War, its great but lacks the satisfaction of playing 40K for real. Pre paints are also of inferior quality and lack the personality that can only come from painting ones own army. Look at the D&D pre paints if you doubt this.

This is also my experience too. As a long (Lo-ong) time Battletech player, when Mechwarrior came out, I reluctantly embraced it (despite goofy rules and mediocre gameplay). A year or two down the line, and even I'm not playing it anymore (the local venue went from a packed house to three players...until the next game of the month comes along). The comment about longevity of the player interest is a key one IMHO. You might rope in a few people, but the majority will just drop the game and move on to something else. Going to pre-paints turns Warhammer into a "disposable" game. I look at my minis as an investment. I spend hours painting, and I expect to be using my figures decades from now (unless they;re replaced with something better). FREX, I still use 15yo High Elf figures in my army, and hope to be using them 15 years from now. All my mechwarrior stuff is in a box in the back of my closet: I didn't do any work on them to be proud, I simply collected them. A person that shows up to a game with a painted and assembled army (rather than a pre-painted or -- horror story -- someone furiously ripping blisters open 5 minutes before the game and dumping figure parts on a movement tray!) says to me that they have a certain level of dedication to the game that might be reflected in gameplay, or the between-turns conversations. People showing up with pre-paints might not have that dedication (and with Mechwarrior this is very much my experience: trying to talk about the setting with players that could really care less created for me a far less satisfying experience).

In the end, for me, its about the spectacle of the game, the feeling of camaraderie with the other player, not the rolling of dice. I like to step back from the game for a minute, look at the board, and instead of seeing counters I see a mini-diorama in the making -- a snapshot of a battle captured mid-stride.

Damon.

Bookwrak
23-01-2008, 11:49
If prepaints are more profitable than unpainted models, then they're obviously the superior product and there would be nothing wrong with discontinuing the regular ones in favor of the new line.

However, the chance of prepaints being profitable for GW? 0.00%

First, there is the massive costs involved with starting up a new plastics production line, with painting machinery. Including every other possible development costs, you're going to have an initial investment that's going to run into million(s) of dollars before you even get the first model on the shelf. You need to have at least enough different models available to build at least a basic force, and for variety you are also going to want to have more than one army represented.

So huzzah, you've got your prepainted line, and how much did it put you in the hole to make it? Now, add to that all the money you _lose_ by not selling glue, brushes, paint, hobby tools et al to go with those prepainted models. There's a reason why GW sells so many over-priced hobby implements: those things are almost pure profit. Cut those out of the equation, and you've just cut a chunk out of your potential earning per model.

Finally, there's no significant market for them. So the occasional person is frightened away by all those sharp clippers and messy paints. They're an insignificant demographic. There is no great horde of potential players out there, with their noses pressed against the window of their local GW store, staring at those gloriously painted models inside, whispering to themselves, 'If only... if only...' No one with any business sense in going to sink such a huge chunk of money into starting up a new production line without at least the theoretical expectation of making it back in some sort of reasonable time frame.

Ward.
23-01-2008, 12:16
Some good points raised, I'd like to chime in and ask people what they'd think of gw out sourcing the plastic miniatures for a new (similiar to necro and mord) game respectivily to china or something where the production start up and initial costs would be much lower allowing them to funnel profits back into the other hobby's?

All criticism and rant like thoughts welcome.

On topic, I don't like the idea of pre-pants for fantasy, It'd just be harder to interest the people I meet in it if they didn't have a chance to express there artistic outlook.

Llew
23-01-2008, 12:52
GW couldn't do them affordably with their current pricing model, but other companies have figured out how to do it. Paying $3 for a painted, albeit basic and not artistic, mini isn't unreasonable, especially when a lot of the single metal minis I see can be $4.

And for people worrying about how awful they'll look on the tabletop, apparently you're lucky and play people with actual painted armies. The most common army themes I see, regardless of race are "Primer White", "Primer Black" and "Primer Red". And of the painted armies I've seen, most barely match the pre-paint standard.

dancingmonkey
23-01-2008, 13:01
just to add a little more fuel to the fire...
GW have done a PPP game. THe LOTR clickie stuf. It was made by the same chaps who made the CCGs and many of the models were upscaled versions of LOTR models.

This is true, as staff we were offered the chance to buy masses of the stuff super cheap when they were getting rid of it as it didn't sell that well.

Also, we could thoerrtically exchange stock for returns of the game, but were encouraged to keep it quiet as a lot of the stuff was flaoting around quite cheap towards the end of its life.

So it seems GW has tried PPP (to an extent). No it wasn't supported in store, but it was sold via more mainstream channels, toy shope etc, and didn't last that long, despite being PPP and LOTR.

MAybe GW is apprehensive about risking another PPP line.

Also note the horror that Confrontation fans expressed at the PPP line (myself sort of included) and the relief that R is not going to stop producing metals in the immediate future. Was this a decision made after the fan reaction? Who knows (apart from R obviously.)

If GW did take such a bold step, who knows the ultimate fan response.

Incedently I've written a short piece on PPP which I am submitting to Firebase in the hopes of publishing. I ultimately reached the opinion that PPP may the future of the hobby, but that many of us "vets" are unhappy with the concept for the reasons you all listed above...

Tazok
23-01-2008, 13:40
I'm with Bookwrak on this. There's really not much of a demand for prepaints in my opinion. And if there was, don't you think there's already solutions out there. There are plenty of painting services available (I see ads for them on several sites like Warseer, Dakkadakka, etc.) and people can easily buy old armies on ebay. Poorly painted armies on ebay go for really cheap by the way. For those of you promoting pre-paints, there's a solution right there for you.

Gaebriel
23-01-2008, 14:09
...
And for people worrying about how awful they'll look on the tabletop, apparently you're lucky and play people with actual painted armies. The most common army themes I see, regardless of race are "Primer White", "Primer Black" and "Primer Red". ...
Hey, you're seeing primer! :D

We've come a long way from silver and grey... :p

Osbad
23-01-2008, 14:31
I'm with Bookwrak on this. There's really not much of a demand for prepaints in my opinion.

Well, I agree that there's not much of a likely market for "poorly produced prepaints". Mongoose's BFE proved that.

On the other hand Rackham's AT-43 is selling well, that proves that if the game and the quality are sound enough then people WILL buy prepaints, even at 20 for a box of six!

Sholto
23-01-2008, 15:54
Wee Toy Soldiers had a review of the Confrontration pre-paints (apologies if this link has already been posted) - http://www.weetoysoldiers.com/wp/?p=407

They look a lot better than I had thought they would, although I don't know if they avoid the horrible-bendy-plastic problem.

FWIW I think pre-paints would be a good idea for GW. You can imagine a line of pre-painted troops squads and commander (for, say, Dark Angels) sold as a loss-leading starter pack. It's good enough on its own to play a game or two, but hopefully it would interest the purchaser enough to entice them to buy more figures, this time from the unpainted range.

The problem with that approach would be mixing the two lines of minis, and I don't know if that would be possible (would they be made of different materials? Could you duplicate the colour scheme on the ones you paint yourself?)

If not, I would like to see GW release a full pre-painted range. Sure it is satisfying painting the minis yourself, but it is much better opening the boxes and then starting to play with your brand new Dark Eldar army 10 minutes later :) I would gladly sacrifice some of the detail for the convenience.

Sholto

STGM
23-01-2008, 16:52
@Sholto,

The Confrontation plastic pre-paints are lot harder than the bendy kind used for Sabertooth's LotR or Mage Knight or various Clix games. And the paintjob is not so garish or glossy as the others. All in all, I was pretty impressed with those prepaints--I liked them better than the AT-43 figures (weetoysoldiers.com is my website, by the way).

Tazok
23-01-2008, 18:35
As mentioned, a move to pre-paints could damage their hobby supplies business.

According to Michael Sherwin (Financial Director) one quarter of GW revenue comes hobby materials (i.e. paints, glues, etc.)

Gaebriel
23-01-2008, 18:55
...
According to Michael Sherwin (Financial Director) one quarter of GW revenue comes hobby materials (i.e. paints, glues, etc.)
:eek:

That's a lot of brushes...

Naga
23-01-2008, 19:38
Here's the thing -- there's no dignity in it. It's a game. It's a hobby. It's young men playing with toys growing up into older men playing with toys.


I think "people playing with self-painted fantasy miniatures" is a much better description. ;)

I can only speak for myself, but the combination of modelism and gaming is what drew me into the hobby, supported by my an interest in science fiction and fantasy.

The prepainted miniatures collector games out there failed to spark my interest so far, while I'm still addicted to nicely modelled pewter miniatures. So I guess prepainted GW miniatures wouldn't spark my interest either.

Actually, I wouldn't mind playing against prepainted miniatures now and then. And they are better than unpainted miniatures for sure.

But in the long run, I'm quite pessimistic about prepaints driving the crafting aspect out of the hobby. I simply can't see the majority of new players having the confidence to "outdo" a moderate quality pre-paint paintjob when they pick up a brush for the first time. So why invest in brushes and paints and stuff in the first place?

While I don't mind playing against pre-painted armies individually (why should I?), I somehow doubt that "the hobby" would keep me interested without the crafting aspect. I like to see what other peoples come up with. I like how people identify with "their" army. I like battlefields that almost look like dioramas.

Without that, I might aswell seperate minature painting and boardgaming. There exist better options for both of it. What makes miniature wargaming so great is the combination of both. (This is especially true for GW.)


"Gamers" may have a different hobby to "hobbyists", but it is just as valid and their money still spends just as well...

a)
I actually play a lot of "conventional" games.
"Gaming" on it's own is not why I'm into miniature gaming. Conventional board games today offer a way larger range of players, better rules and a way better gaming-fun-per-money ratio.

The problem of one-shot games is that they are so cheap. 20 pay you hours of fun without the need to buy more. You don't need specialiced shops for that. And if there is a gaming shop, they don't make their money with one-shot (board) games.

b)
That's where collectibe gaming comes in, miniature wargaming is a subset of that - a quite moderate one at that: You pay your stuff once, and that's about it. There's some points creep, and some rules-revision-outsourcing, but that's about it. Why? Because players don't only buy their armies, but also invest in them - time and effort mostly. And I don't think a miniature company that caters to self-painting would get away with making major lines unfieldable.
Now look at the CCG and CMG games: Stuff tends to get replaced after a few years by more potent stuff. Or entire game systems disappear, only to be replaced by the Next New Thing.

I think the reason why GW is doing so well compared to other miniature game companies is that they keeping the players involved (by players investing not only money, but also effort and identity) while also making them buy new stuff (new codices and rules, sinking points, new models...).


Their customer demographic is the background driven gamer that becomes more loyal the more money and time he invests.

Their customer demographic - to my knowledge - is NOT the winning-oriented gamer that's after the nice looking game-of-the-year. Games-of-the-year have to be cheap to develop and to produce to get people in fast, and to make money while the game is "hot" - I don't think that this is what most current GW player want.


GW might be losing out on a huge income source, true. And they definately should ease access to their product range by introducing a skirmish game for one of their army sized main ranges. Getting a one-shot game (prepainted or not) into stores to create more interest might be also a good idea.


But switching their main games to prepainted miniatures would, in the long run, probably drive away their current customer demographic and expose them stronger to the competion. So prepainted miniatures might well backfire for GW, which probably is why they scrapped it.

Gaebriel
23-01-2008, 19:58
I'm still a bit surprised about why people would think they woudn't be able to do the craft-side of the hobby when GW produced a pre-painted line.

It's not like anone would go around and forbid anyone to wied their Xacto knife and paintbrush. Even if GW would cease pushing that part of the hobby, it would be up to everyone how to pursue their hobby.

Do people model and paint because they like it, or do they model and paint because GW tells them to?

I mean, I know people who are in the wargaming hobby who do not model and paint. I also know of many brilliant modelmakers and painters who never brushed shoulders with GW.

Everyone can choose what they like and choose to embrace the part of the hobby they like. And I think a company should be open to all of them. While building an exalted circle probably highers the perception of the hobby as a whole (debatable as I know as many people who think of GW hobbyists as snobby), that doesn't touch the performance of the single hobbyist, does it? Neither would a more casual approach diminish a single hobbyists performance.

Ergo : I do not think we need a company to set the benchmark, and if somewhat lowering or loosing that would produce a revenue, all the more power to them.

Naga
23-01-2008, 20:53
Do people model and paint because they like it, or do they model and paint because GW tells them to?


While I can see where you are coming from, I think it's the wrong question.
It's not "Why do people model and paint?", but "Why do people model and paint GW stuff?".

With the "GW hobby", it's actually three things that fascinate me, crafting wise: my stuff, the other guys stuff and the gaming table.

Ok, in wargaming, the gaming table is often an afterthought, but there is some great stuff out there that's fun to play on.
But my experience is that people start with their miniatures, and after some time try their hands on the gaming table. My fear is: No more miniature crafting -> no more gaming table crafting. That's a big chunk of creativity and craftsmanship gone.

So with no miniature and gaming table crafting going on, I might feel like being in the wrong hobby. Why shouldn't I limit miniature painting to home, and do other random miniatures I like? (It's not like GW miniatures are bad. But the gaming hobby aspect is one of the main incentives to paint them and not some other stuff. ;) )
From a mere crafting aspect, painting single miniatures to a high standard is more rewarding than doing tabletop units. What makes the tabletop crafting worth it is actually "seeing" the background come alive on the table. Without that, what's point?

Toss in an a probably increasingly "winning oriented mindset" (rules over background and minatures), and I might be tempted to leave the hobby to do gaming and painting seperately.



(I have no idea what I would actually do. But so far I haven't been tempted to paint pre-painted miniatures from collectible games and play with them. So why should that change when playing with GW prepaints should become standard?)

RadiO
23-01-2008, 22:44
I don't see why prepaints vs. conventional miniatures has to be either/or.

A) A seperate skirmish game to 40k which has nothing in common with 40k except the setting and the models. The "Gateway Drug".
B) A limited set of prepaints - rank-and-file troops and a very few other units, the models of which are equivalent in every way to existing models in existing armies in 40k, and can be used as such.
C) Everything else in the game using standard unbuilt, unpainted 40k models, brought into the Skirmish game via a rules suppliment.
I can't see much of a flaw really. You've got enough prepaints to allow people to buy a force and play straight away - and there's an incentive for people to buy, build and paint models to expand their forces. But because the scale of the Skirmish game is small, doing this is an easily achievable goal. I imagine it'd be easier and more fun for a beginner to start off in the hobby, if all you have to do to make the first step in is to buy a couple of squads of ready-to-go Necron Warriors, and build and paint a Necron Lord. And then being free to expand from there.
GW get to sell the same unbuilt, unpainted models to 40k players and Skirmish players, who can reuse their collection of models to play 40k.
Since the only way that a Skirmish player could realistically play 40k with their army is to expand it the hard way (i.e. building and painting), nobody's nose need get put out of joint. But prepaints give the Skirmish player a leg-up in doing this - it's an relatively easily achievable goal, again.

lanrak
23-01-2008, 22:50
Hi all.
I find it odd how GW spokespersons say' The GW hobby is crafting based, collecting assembling and painting your army ...'
Yet these 'purists' who think a prepaint range, for those lacking in time/interest, will 'kill thier hobby'.
Do not bat an eyelid when GW releases fully coluored and assembled terrain!

When I was a lad we made our own terrain from cardboard and lolypop sticks...
So the GW line is 'if we can sell you stuff at a huge mark up we will'.
Its got NOTHING to do with the hobby of wargaming, its just GW preaching buy ALL OUR products.

And they are just afraid if they sell prepaints, there will be a drop in sales of thier overpriced hobby supplies.

Gaebriel
23-01-2008, 23:11
While I can see where you are coming from, I think it's the wrong question.
It's not "Why do people model and paint?", but "Why do people model and paint GW stuff?".
...Not discarding your point of view just taking this as a hook.

My question is : do we need GW's guidance to have a wargaming hobby including modelmaking and gameplay?

There is a huge scene out there who doesn't use GW's models, systems and GW's integrated hobby-recipy, but regardless follows a philosophy of well painted miniatures, and fully modelled gaming tables.

So GW is not the source of all this, it comes from the community itself. So to the craft side of the hobby it wouldn't matter whether GW had an additional less craft-intensive line or not.

Naga
23-01-2008, 23:51
Yet these 'purists' who think a prepaint range, for those lacking in time/interest, will 'kill thier hobby'.
Do not bat an eyelid when GW releases fully coluored and assembled terrain!


Well, I have a hard time taking GW terrain serious, so I don't care much. Products for model train dioramas tend to be simply superior and fairer priced.

For me, craftsmanship and creativity are two essential parts of the existing GW ranges. Perhaps I'm too pessimistic, but I haven't seen much effort put into terrain and re-painting of prepainted miniatures so far. And I don't see why that trend should be diffrent for prepainted GW products.

I don't care if GW starts a new game with prepainted miniatures. It would simply lack some of the things that fascinate me with the existing games, that's all.

Today, GW and most of the playerbase agree that the creative/crafting aspect one of the central aspects of the game. A large-scale introduction of prepaints might move the hobby focus/atmosphere from a rather equal distribution of background, crafting/painting and playing to a "game system mindset", where result dominates over style. I would not like that, and don't see the need for it.


Edit:


There is a huge scene out there who doesn't use GW's models, systems and GW's integrated hobby-recipy, but regardless follows a philosophy of well painted miniatures, and fully modelled gaming tables.


That is true.
My experience is simply that the "paints-miniatures-and-builds-terrain crowd" and the "plays-prepainted-miniature-games-and-thinks-painting-is-a-chore crowd" don't overlap that much. I just think that trying to appeal to each player group seperately might be the better solution for everybody, that's all.

Crazy Harborc
24-01-2008, 00:42
Until GW is having pre-painting done in China.....IMHO, it won't happen....pre-painted GW minies, that is.

We are not going to find out what would happen....unless it happens. Current players who already do it all(assembly, painting etc. etc.) are not too likely to try them out. Brand new newbies?? They might be about 50-50 on trying the game.

A13X
24-01-2008, 00:55
I don't want to offend people here but it seems that alot of the people here who have said that prepainted minis are good, are not, or at least do not view themselves as good painters. I quite liek the painting aspect of the hobby and the control it gves you over your army so I think paersonally that removing it would be blasphamy as far as the hobby 40k and Fantasy goes.

I'm not the greatest painter, but I have noticed some quite remarkable imporvments in my painting skills lately and I think, with some time and effort, everyone can become a great painter. Not only are your models probably going to look better on the tabletop (because as you get better, your qualitywill undoubtly exceed those for prepainted minis) but it's your army. You didn't just buy it off a shelf and play, you put in the effort to assemble, convert and paint all of those models. The feeling you get from gaming with your minis would be worth far more then that of playing instantly with prepainted minis.

You're never going to become a better painter if you game with prepainted minis, so IMHO I hope GW stays with the style it's got now.

Gaebriel
24-01-2008, 01:22
I can only speak for myself in that I'm sure not a Golden Demon painter - but I am consent with what I get done in the sparse time I'm willing to invest. I don't in any way aim to get better - painting is one of the less interesting parts of the hobby to me.

Nonetheless, I wouldn't buy prepainted models for the fact that I doubt they would have the colour scheme I wanted.

So no, I don't advocate prepainted models because I think it would be an easy way out for me.

The point why I think prepainted would be a good idea has nothing to do with this - I think it would be good if the established structures were broken up to open the hobby to new customers.

What I mean with established structures is this

I don't want to offend people here but it seems that alot of the people here who have said that prepainted minis are good, are not, or at least do not view themselves as good painters.
...
I'm not the greatest painter, but I have noticed some quite remarkable imporvments in my painting skills lately and I think, with some time and effort, everyone can become a great painter.
...
You didn't just buy it off a shelf and play, you put in the effort to assemble, convert and paint all of those models. The feeling you get from gaming with your minis would be worth far more then that of playing instantly with prepainted minis.

You're never going to become a better painter if you game with prepainted minis, so IMHO I hope GW stays with the style it's got now.
People thinking being a great painter is the greatest feat in the wargaming world, expressing the need to get better like it's some substantial desire, and suggesting that a self-painted army is an essential part of one's playing experience (do I hear the flipping pages of a GW marketing catlogue?).

This is what I meant when I said, don't know if in this thread or another : a strange culture that GW bred over the last two decades.

No insult to A12X intended, your post just conveniently displays that point of view, and I respect your opinion as well as everones personal outlook on the hobby.

But for me? Why should I care if I get a better painter? Well, nice if it so happens that I get those thingies finished quicker over time, but that's not my essential want. (And before the prejudice kicks in - I'm neither a powergamer nor an unfair opponent, and like my background better than many people I know ;) ).

Stella Cadente
24-01-2008, 01:29
why do people hate pre-paints so much? are you really so ignorant that you have not yet realised you can RE-PAINT THEM YOURSELF (for example the Axis and Allies range of models)
duuh
plus nobody will force you to buy them

Templar Ben
24-01-2008, 02:57
WS ate my post.

Perhaps the ones that fear the loss of the hobby aspects should look at what many people do with the Heroscape line. They modify the hex boards with static grass and flock and repaint the minis.

As to the poster that said there is no money in prepaints, well ha. Hasbro has three prepaint lines under WotC and it will soon be four as they are moving HeroScape there in April. Hasbro more than likely has more earnings from Heroscape than GW shows in profit (when they show a profit).

Crazy Harborc
24-01-2008, 03:39
I have the basic game and two suppliments. Three out of four grandchildren play the game and love it....so does their grandpaw.:D The forth grandchild is only 4.....still a little young to start.

I have been thinking about doing some painting, touch up work. Hasbro and it's Heroscape are helping me to reel in the grandchildren. Their parents aren't gamers (sigh, I failed). But...now....:D

Back to the post.

People who aren't painters.....yet. Spure of the moment, impluse game buyers who want to try it. The rest of us are in no way "required" to use pre-painted minies.

Pokpoko
24-01-2008, 09:15
plus nobody will force you to buy them unless GW decides,liek most companies which did go PPP,to stop bothering with kits when they introduce PPP.rack did it, Wizards i think did it(well,they killed Chainmail before intrudcing D&D minis iirc),MGP did it with their SST line even though they didn't get round to actually releasing any ppp for that game...

RE-PAINT THEM YOURSELFmight as well not pay the mandatory "chinese sweatshop workhours" fee for gluing and painting the stuff and do it all yourself then with proper minis.

why do people hate pre-paints so much?because i'm yet to see one that does not suck. vechicles are ok most time,but every time i see any sort of infantry,even from the great Rackhams themselves, they look worse than "normal" minis in terms of sculpt and posing,and more often than not feel like i'm playing with toys. yes, i am playing with toys anyway,but mine at least don't have poseable heads and bodies,like some sort of action-man:eek:

i'm not opposed to prepaints, i just don't like them myself:angel:

Templar Ben
24-01-2008, 14:11
unless GW decides,liek most companies which did go PPP,to stop bothering with kits when they introduce PPP.rack did it, Wizards i think did it(well,they killed Chainmail before intrudcing D&D minis iirc),MGP did it with their SST line even though they didn't get round to actually releasing any ppp for that game...

Chainmail died before prepaints. Wizards found that the market just wasn't there because of the low volumes necessary for D&D. When they decided to reenter with prepaints the went with the same model as Magic (random and collectible). Wizards has said that they do not plan to change HeroScape to being random and game play will remain different. The reason most companies that go prepainted drop the other line is because prepaints sell better.


might as well not pay the mandatory "chinese sweatshop workhours" fee for gluing and painting the stuff and do it all yourself then with proper minis.

Sounds almost like you think a prepaint would be more expensive. Why would you presume there is some "Chinese sweatshop" fee? I find it funny that a multipiece plastic model is a "proper mini" when historically single piece metal was a proper mini. Don't worry though, GW won't change. We all know that. They don't need to change, just look at how successful they are at growing a new customer base.


because i'm yet to see one that does not suck. vechicles are ok most time,but every time i see any sort of infantry,even from the great Rackhams themselves, they look worse than "normal" minis in terms of sculpt and posing,and more often than not feel like i'm playing with toys. yes, i am playing with toys anyway,but mine at least don't have poseable heads and bodies,like some sort of action-man:eek:

But they do have "poseable heads" you just glue them in place in what you said above. As far as them not sucking, perhaps you are talking about something other than GW. Look at a GW tank and a Tamiya tank and tell me which one sucks. That is neither here nor there though as I said, we all know GW won't change.

Naga
24-01-2008, 16:09
The reason most companies that go prepainted drop the other line is because prepaints sell better.


Yes, but why? Because there's a larger miniature turnover.

That's for two reasons:
a)
Prepaints are boring. (I started my long road into the hobby with prepainted HO scale miniatures almost 20 years ago, so that's my experience.) There's little point in collecting prepainted miniatures - you didn't invest any sweat, and they mostly won't become more valuable over time.
You simply never get really attached to your toys, so after a while you loose interest.

b)
Most miniature games are not "good enough games" in themselves to keep players interested. Just ask yourself the question: Would you consider the game mechanics of Game XYZ fun enough to play it with paper tokens? For most game systems, including 40k, the answer would be no.
Chess is in the luxurious position to be played with the same 6 miniatures again and again - because it's the game mechanics that keep players interested. With most miniature games, that's not the case.




I simply don't want the GW games (or miniature games in general) to become high turnover games, where old stuff gets contantly discarded for new stuff to keep the playerbase interested and playing the game.

(And yes, I know that support plays a big role with pewter miniature games, too. But I think that's got a lot more to do with being sure to find players to play with, than with the games themselves. And it's of a totally diffrent magnitude than the turnover of prepainted or collectible games out there.)



To sum it up:
What faszinates me with 40k and other GW games, and makes it stand out against other games, is the effort invested by most players involved. That's the love of the background as well as the painting/crafting/modeling efforts invested to make it look outstanding.
I think that's contradictory to the no-effort no-creativity approach prepaints stand for.

I'm not against prepaints in general. I honestly don't mind them being used in other games, and they might even be the better choice in some of them. (Historic, game-mechanic focused wargames for example. No need for creativity there.)
But I simply can't see switching the existing GW games to prepaints without loosing the aspects that set them apart from other games in the long run.
It's not about "good" and "bad" choices, it's about trends and how they change the player mindest that dominates the metagame/hobby aspect of a game.

Mr. Smuckles
24-01-2008, 16:28
GW produces some of the best miniatures out there, especially their plastic kits. They are known for being detailed and customizable.

Putting out some ugly-ass prepaints (and I've never seen a nice looking one) would be a complete 180 for GW and would be ridiculous. I'm pretty sure the pre-painted minis fad is going to pass anyway, they are just toys rather than an honest-to-god hobby like GW's games.

Osbad
24-01-2008, 16:53
ugly-ass prepaints (and I've never seen a nice looking one)


...erm, I have...
http://img211.imageshack.us/img211/5297/rbta01021d4ea3ctv7.jpg

I know tastes vary, and many of Rackham's pictures on their website are "studio" paints, rather than the product you actually buy. But the Striders are pretty much as you get them. I own three of these beauties and they will be forming part of the force I use to crush the creepy alien menace at my club tonight... :D

Not all prepaints are ugly. At least not to everyone!

Personally I simply don't see that the "No prepaints over my dead body" have the moral high ground here.

The "high ground", if it exists at all stands with those that offer the most customer choice (assuming GW wouldn't charge a huge price for them, which I admit is a huge assumption, but really for a different day!)

What right do those demanding the non-production of prepaints have to deny those that would like to play 40k with prepainted models the option of doing so at a reasonable cost? There's nothing now denying me from paying someone to paint my models for me.

Personally I quite enjoy painting. But I have limited time and like to try new games. If prepaints were on offer I might well take them up, try a few games and either expand my interest or sell them on with no bother. What is the moral argument for preventing me taking up that option? I just don't get it.

Sure people should take a pride in what they have achieved with a nicely painted army. I have one or two models I'm proud of myself. But it doesn't allow me the privelege of looking down on, or preventing the enjoyment of those who don't have that luxury for whatever reason.

As for the fact that GW and other wargames aren't of high enough quality to enjoy for the longterm without the additional impetous of having to collect and paint your own army? What? AT-43 is a great game! The argument there is to persuade GW to improve the game not to eliminate the prepaint option surely!

Sure I can't take pride in the Red Blok army I've built for AT-43. but I can still enjoy the little collection I have built up at a certain level - people can enjoy collecting just as much as others enjoy painting. How does it make you feel good to deny that option to those that would enjoy what would be an entirely new hobby? It sure would beat the heck out of stamp collecting as a way to pass the time...

And as a parting shot to the ridiculous "never seen a good prepaint" argument. Have you never seen a "collectors" edition from Corgi?

http://img176.imageshack.us/img176/2213/aa33012corgimontage1e64cr8.jpg

Stella Cadente
24-01-2008, 17:06
people who think they pre-paints are "boring" or "ugly ass" are probably the people who have never seen any pre-paints in there lives or whos experience with pre-paints is too low to make an educated decision, I have seen many good looking prepaints in my time
the aircraft from Wings of war
The Akagi from Axis and Allies
The Shoho from A&A
the shokaku from A&A
the Yamato from A&A
the HMS Hood A&A
USS Enterprise from A&A
the Italian navy from A&A
and many many more from the tanks from the Axis and Allies 1939 - 1945 range
ALSO the range of Dragon Pre-painted models (there prepainted, and models, so still the same for argument sake)
and many many more

Minibull
24-01-2008, 17:09
I have the perfect answer to this question (and I believe it's being considered by GW) - make a Tannhauser-type game for the re-release of Space Hulk. Include pre-painted termies and genestealers, then sell expansion books that include updated rules (the horror! ;) ) and rules for using existing non-prepainted figures/squads in the game.

I see this as a win-win for everyone:

- Existing hobbyists wouldn't feel threatened by the pre-paints as they would not replace core troops in 40k (unless someone wanted to buy 4-5 copies of at $40-$60 board game to get a pre-painted Deathwing or Stealer 'Nid army - not likely as they could probably buy a nicely painted army for the same price [assuming a total cost of around ~$250]).

- Existing hobbyists would love to have a new version of Space Hulk. Atleast I would (it was an awesome game!).

- New players would be able to enter into the 40k universe without having to be a modeler/painter. Plus they would be encouraged to purchase existing non-painted models to use in the board game.

- New players would be exposed to a basic version of the 40k rules (the figure stats, the three phases of a turn, etc) that would enable and encourage them to try the full-blown Warhammer 40k.

Osbad
24-01-2008, 17:11
That would be nice if they did it. I'd likely buy it for one, if the price was similar to Tannhauser (say 40 or so, Tannhauser is 36 MSRP - got mine for 26 off eBay... *gloats*)

Templar Ben
24-01-2008, 17:26
Yes, but why? Because there's a larger miniature turnover.

That's for two reasons:
a)
Prepaints are boring. (I started my long road into the hobby with prepainted HO scale miniatures almost 20 years ago, so that's my experience.) There's little point in collecting prepainted miniatures - you didn't invest any sweat, and they mostly won't become more valuable over time.
You simply never get really attached to your toys, so after a while you loose interest.

You say there is little point in collecting prepaints but then that is precisely what people do with D&D minis. As for prepaints being more valuable over time, well judging by the second hand market for older D&D prepaints they grow in value much faster than GW minis.

I will be hones though, I don't get all that attached to any toys so perhaps there are many people like you that have a strong attachment to GW minis. I would be more inclined to be attached to GI Joe but that is due to the better craftsmanship.

If people are losing interest with prepaints then wouldn't they be super cheep to pick up on eBay?


b)
Most miniature games are not "good enough games" in themselves to keep players interested. Just ask yourself the question: Would you consider the game mechanics of Game XYZ fun enough to play it with paper tokens? For most game systems, including 40k, the answer would be no.
Chess is in the luxurious position to be played with the same 6 miniatures again and again - because it's the game mechanics that keep players interested. With most miniature games, that's not the case.

That is not true about most games being bad. I agree that GW has two terrible games in WHFB and 40K. They are sloppy and unrealistic. I would play Warmachine with balls of paper. I would play LotR with anything but the fact that they have such nice minis is just a bonus.


I simply don't want the GW games (or miniature games in general) to become high turnover games, where old stuff gets contantly discarded for new stuff to keep the playerbase interested and playing the game.

GW does that already with the move from metal to plastic and the plastic redesign. GW needs to keep people buying new stuff. If you purchase a 3000 point army and never make a new purchase (even though you are interested and playing the game) then GW is in a world of financial hurt.

I understand that you are afraid of prepaints. It seems you are afraid that too many people would play and then leave and since they haven't incurred such a high sunk cost there is little reason for them to stay. If GW had a well designed game and strong support for the system then there would be little fear of that.


(And yes, I know that support plays a big role with pewter miniature games, too. But I think that's got a lot more to do with being sure to find players to play with, than with the games themselves. And it's of a totally diffrent magnitude than the turnover of prepainted or collectible games out there.)

So are you saying that it is because prepaints have such a large mass appeal that you don't want it? Too bad we can't find out how many D&D minis are sold worldwide. I know they move tons of product. That would help put this in perspective.


To sum it up:
What faszinates me with 40k and other GW games, and makes it stand out against other games, is the effort invested by most players involved. That's the love of the background as well as the painting/crafting/modeling efforts invested to make it look outstanding.
I think that's contradictory to the no-effort no-creativity approach prepaints stand for.

Well if you were truly putting in effort and creativity then why don't you sculpt your own minis like I do? I love how people that try to take an elitist attitude never see that they place the bar just BELOW their current position.


I'm not against prepaints in general. I honestly don't mind them being used in other games, and they might even be the better choice in some of them. (Historic, game-mechanic focused wargames for example. No need for creativity there.)

Perhaps you should define creativity.


But I simply can't see switching the existing GW games to prepaints without loosing the aspects that set them apart from other games in the long run.
It's not about "good" and "bad" choices, it's about trends and how they change the player mindest that dominates the metagame/hobby aspect of a game.

I agree that GW would suffer greatly with prepaints. Those prepaints would sit on the shelf next to HeroScape or D&D minis. GW has always suffered in comparison at least in the States. That is why many times I have said that I don't see GW going that route. Just as you said above, GW has some terrible games. All they can count on are rabid fans that love skulls.

Mr. Smuckles
24-01-2008, 17:33
...erm, I have...
http://img211.imageshack.us/img211/5297/rbta01021d4ea3ctv7.jpg


I've seen a degree of the AT-43 line in person and I have to say the painting reminds me of toys from the 80's. They are completely unappealing to me. The quality of the actual model begins to approach that of a traditional mini, but it is not quite there yet.

Some of the AT-43 stuff does have an inspired design, I just wish they were of a more traditional and therefore inherently customizable format.

Naga
24-01-2008, 17:44
people who think they pre-paints are "boring" or "ugly ass" are probably the people who have never seen any pre-paints in there lives or whos experience with pre-paints is too low to make an educated decision

Wrong.
I started with Preiser 1/87 miniatures (http://www.preiser-figuren.de/group,1E8039F8214A6F057B8A77B71B8CB7C7,Preiser_1:8 7.html) years ago, and they are still far better than most of the stuff you see in miniature wargaming today.

But at the end of the day, they are still only stuff you bought. This lack of personal involvement is what I mean with "boring".



The point is that pre-paints in the GW core games would be the no-effort no-creativity shortcut into games that are highly defined by the effort and creativity players invest in them. While I don't care individually, I think that on a large scale, this would result in a trend towards less effort and less creativity.
I really don't think that this is a moral question, so there is also no moral high ground. It would still only be a game - but a different one.



For the same reasons, I wouldn't mind seing prepaints in a GW game (like Minibull's Space Hulk idea), as long as they don't become a major option in the three core games.

Gaebriel
24-01-2008, 17:49
...
Most miniature games are not "good enough games" in themselves to keep players interested. Just ask yourself the question: Would you consider the game mechanics of Game XYZ fun enough to play it with paper tokens? For most game systems, including 40k, the answer would be no.
Chess is in the luxurious position to be played with the same 6 miniatures again and again - because it's the game mechanics that keep players interested. With most miniature games, that's not the case.
...
I'm not against prepaints in general. I honestly don't mind them being used in other games, and they might even be the better choice in some of them. (Historic, game-mechanic focused wargames for example. No need for creativity there.)
...
I understand that GW's games would loose a good deal of their appeal if the craft side would be taken away - people could even start to look around for a quality ruleset ;) [/tongue in cheek] (And they might land with a good historical engine of which many are indifferent to with what kind of playing pieces they are played, and whose gameplay is great enough so that it doesn't really matter - only to confirm your assumptions.)

But I still think that the majority of the community would regulate themselves. I don't see the craft-orientated side of the hobby dying, even if GW would cease pushing it as #1. Craft-orientated gamers would still do their part, non craft-orientated gamers wouldn't, regardless of a higher institution. And being free in their choice, anyone could group with those of a similar interest and avoid those they don't like - they tend do that already, painted vs unpainted players, tournament players vs casual player, competitive players vs storytellers.

Pokpoko
24-01-2008, 18:12
Sounds almost like you think a prepaint would be more expensive.you'v looked into pricing of AT-43? 6 models for 30Euro.same as 10 marines or 20 IG. however you look at it,it makes GW seem like sensible pricing:eek:BFEvo also costed insane price for 10 25mm blobs of plastic.let's not forget that with Rackham, this 30Euro also gets you,apart from paintjob,good or bad as it is, something that can only be described as mother of all mouldlines.at least in those examples i'v seen.

They don't need to change, just look at how successful they are at growing a new customer base.
breaking news, i don't give a flying monkey about GW.they may rot as far as i'm concerned:D they do have to change, they may even start selling prepaints, i won't care. i just don't like the ppp models availible currently,which,with the exception of AT-43 russian walkers, are...well,at best on par with GW plastics.which means appaling by any other standard.

Have you never seen a "collectors" edition from Corgi?

Look at a GW tank and a Tamiya tank and tell me which one sucksnotice.none of those two are wargaming companies. perhaps i should re-word. prepaints produced by wargaming companies are usually bad. especially the infantry,tanks and such are easier to do than humans it seems.

Naga
24-01-2008, 18:14
If people are losing interest with prepaints then wouldn't they be super cheep to pick up on eBay?


Uhm - aren't they?
Prepainted D&D miniatures are sold in packs of 5 for 2€ on German Ebay. A fellow roleplayer got her elven mage miniature that way.

More expensive miniatures tend to be those that are rare and powerful in-game. Just like magic cards. I don't think that has much to do with the miniatures themselves.




GW needs to keep people buying new stuff.


I don't argue that. :)
But I can still use my Space Marines from 10 years ago. While new ones look better, and I would need some transports/tanks/fast attack to go with them, they are still feasable. I can't say the same about most of the collectible stuff from 10 years ago. That's what I meant.



I understand that you are afraid of prepaints. It seems you are afraid that too many people would play and then leave and since they haven't incurred such a high sunk cost there is little reason for them to stay. If GW had a well designed game and strong support for the system then there would be little fear of that.


That's only right if "cost" is meant as "personal involvement" (and not as "money").

I simply think that the "hobby" of 40k is larger than the "game" 40k. I enjoy Settlers of Catan and a lot of other board games. They are solid game systems and they have friendly communities. The producers sponsor tournaments and have a good connection to their playerbase.
Yet, to me, each game for itself, they are "only" games, not a hobby.
That's where for example 40k is diffrent. It offers a lot of stuff that is simply "more" than game-mechanics. There's the painting/crafting aspect and the background/storytelling aspect. And the option to merge your own ideas into it.
I think this "hobby" aspect is the strength of the GW games (and most other miniature games out there). I don't think "sacrificing" the hobby aspect for easier access to the gaming aspect is worth it. That's all.




Well if you were truly putting in effort and creativity then why don't you sculpt your own minis like I do?


Who says I don't?
But I simply think it has nothing to do with the discussion. As does playing/collecting/painting other stuff than GW.

I don't see how calling gamers that consider the crafting/painting part of the hobby important a "GW fanboy" or "elitist" is helpful to the debate, sorry.

Templar Ben
24-01-2008, 18:32
I was noting that the attitude that you must perform action X to be a part of the wargaming hobby to be elitist. Perhaps you have a better word for that attitude?

I will need to check out the German eBay I suppose. I think shipping would make picking them up prohibitive. Thanks for pointing that out though. Perhaps HeroScape is cheep there too.

I haven't seen a prepaint game from 10 years ago so I don't know how much staying power they have. Sounds like you are talking more about game support and longevity than prepaint vs unpainted though.

Stella Cadente
24-01-2008, 18:50
I was noting that the attitude that you must perform action X to be a part of the wargaming hobby to be elitist. Perhaps you have a better word for that attitude?
I have a better word for the attitude, but Warseer will just block it out in a bunch of *'s so theres no point:D

Naga
24-01-2008, 22:16
I was noting that the attitude that you must perform action X to be a part of the wargaming hobby to be elitist. Perhaps you have a better word for that attitude?

(I would just stick to "crafting focused players" and "gameplay focused players", or something like that.)

I don't think that you have to be a miniature-painting wargamer or even a miniature wargamer to be a wargamer. There are a lot of wargames out there that work perfectly fine without miniatures, Advanced Squad Leader for example.

But what makes 40k, Fantasy or LotR stand out of the crowd are interestingly painted miniatures and nice gaming tables.

If somebody doesn't like playing against unpainted armies or on gaming tables made from random stuff, does that make him an elitist? There are thousand reasons to accept it as an exception. But would anyone here enjoy it as a rule?

And yes, I know it's the extreme example. But it is still effort vs. no-effort. You can argue about how much effort should be invested into the hobby to make it enjoyable, and I seriously don't hold other players to a high standard.

But I simply don't believe that you can spread the message "40k doesn't require any effort, just buy stuff and play" and not expect the painting/crafting standard to drop.

Lars Porsenna
24-01-2008, 22:38
why do people hate pre-paints so much? are you really so ignorant that you have not yet realised you can RE-PAINT THEM YOURSELF (for example the Axis and Allies range of models)
duuh


How many prepaints have you repainted lately?

Can you reccommend a good stripper for the industrial paint used on them?

Can you suggest a method of repainting that won't loose detail over the overly thick industrial paint?

Can you suggest a method of leeching plasticizer from the plastic, to make them less bendy?

Can you suggest a method to enhance detail on already poorly detailed models?

Having tried either enhancing the base paintjob or repainiting pre-paints, all it results in is a slightly less satisfying lump of plastic.

Damon.

Lars Porsenna
24-01-2008, 22:41
Look at a GW tank and a Tamiya tank and tell me which one sucks. [/QUOTE]

Two different animals. A Tamiya tank is usually a display piece (well, except for the older kits designed to be motorized) whereas GW tanks are designed to be durable enough for tabletop play. PLus Tamiya is required to try to make the model as realistic as practical; GW is under no such constraints.

Besides, there are PLENTY of Tamiya stinkers in their line.

Damon.

Stella Cadente
24-01-2008, 22:51
How many prepaints have you repainted lately?
umm.......I think its about 13-15 now from the A&A War at sea range


Can you reccommend a good stripper for the industrial paint used on them?
don't need to really, just get the paint on without handling them too much if possible, then get the varnish on them, keeps mine fine


Can you suggest a method of repainting that won't loose detail over the overly thick industrial paint?
just thin coats of paint, thats all I did


Can you suggest a method of leeching plasticizer from the plastic, to make them less bendy?
fraid not, and I seriously wouldn't want too, probably break every minute then, I just glue my A&A ships on strips of plastic, that stops them bending


Can you suggest a method to enhance detail on already poorly detailed models?
depends on the models, A&A stuff is surprisingly well detailed


Having tried either enhancing the base paintjob or repainiting pre-paints, all it results in is a slightly less satisfying lump of plastic.
well these are my Aircraft carrier re-paints, and I think there a marked improvement over the originals
http://i138.photobucket.com/albums/q250/sterling101_photos/USSRepaints014.jpg
http://i138.photobucket.com/albums/q250/sterling101_photos/USSRepaints013.jpg
http://i138.photobucket.com/albums/q250/sterling101_photos/USSRepaints012.jpg

judge for yourself if they look like a "slightly less satisfying lump of plastic"

Lars Porsenna
25-01-2008, 00:16
judge for yourself if they look like a "slightly less satisfying lump of plastic"

While I think you did a good job with the repaints, I can see where detail has been "rounded" and not as crisp as FREX a metal casting or a bare plastic casting. YOU may be satisfied with this, but it's a no go for me.

I have a few A&A ships, also a good number of armor pieces. Besides the inferior detail (yes, very much so...I build armor models and have been doing it for 20 years -- the last 15 seriously -- such that I can determine if the armor slope on a Panther tank is inaccurate and the like).

Nonetheless, why should I spend money on a product I consider to be inferior anyway? Yell as much you want about "YOU CAN JUST REPAINT THEM!" but you know that doesn't meet the high standards I set for MYSELF.

If GW goes to prepaints, and due to this decides to cut the regular line, I'm out of the game. There would be no satisfction in it anymore.

Also:
I have a better word for the attitude, but Warseer will just block it out in a bunch of *'s so theres no point

You might not like the anti-PPP crowd, but just as equally it takes a bit of arrogance to tell me I should just shut up and accept PPP and NOT be worried about a hobby I've invested a tremendous amount of time, money and passion into. I know what I like, and as much as YOU participate in the game, it is still MY hobby, and I should decide how I participate on MY terms. If that does not involve PPP, then so be it.

Damon.

Stella Cadente
25-01-2008, 00:22
Yell as much you want about "YOU CAN JUST REPAINT THEM!" but you know that doesn't meet the high standards I set for MYSELF.
that comes down to your own confidene in your pating skills, not in them being prepaints

thinkerman
25-01-2008, 02:04
I think pre paints could be a good thing - especially for me and many others in my opinion,

Ive got many other miniature games both pre painted and otherwise, ive often brought other models, figures, miniatures and used them in my own games, some of these include:

-Airfix Aircraft carriers for a naval/crimson skies game (unpainted)
-Star wars Minis (pre painted)
-Battlestar Galactica Titanium ships by hasbro for Scifi Ship combat (pre painted)
-Halo ActionClix by wizards (pre painted)

The pre painted stuff makes things alot easier to game with and looks pleasing once out of the box, yes i do tidy alot of them up, my master chiefs for example in halo, ive highlighted them and customized a few, repainted his visor etc and made then look ten times better.

Where as my 40k marine army currently cosists of 80+ marines, 2 dreadnoughts, Land raider etc etc etc. 10 marines are made, the 70 need the mold lines removing, Dreadnoughts need assembling, tank needs taking off the sprue, spraying, painting, detailing, transfers etc.

Ive got something like 3 months of painting to do while doing my exsisting job and having a girlfriend doesnt make it easy.

I really do enjoy the converting and building side of the hobby but sometimes i bite off more than i can chew, then it goes under the bed and wasted.

Where as my pre painted stuff is ready to go from day one and lots of other people i know have pre painted rackham stuff etc and playing becomes easy, so i think there is some merit in doing something about it.

If only doing starter sets pre painted - Moria and Skull pass say, to the newbie that would be an excellent start, get them gaming and hooked on things then building and adding stuff from the exsisting range of multi part kits

Other option is to do some new easy pick up games, rpgs or some sort of titan battle game like mech warrior with easy style rules or offering different games again - battle over sulphur river, space hulk, mordhiem, blood bowl, all with some sort of outta the box with a quick pick up and play system.

Lars Porsenna
25-01-2008, 02:06
that comes down to your own confidene in your pating skills, not in them being prepaints

Has nothing to do with my own confidence in painting techniques. Detail loss due to multiple paint layers is not a matter of technique.

Damon.

Stella Cadente
25-01-2008, 02:19
Has nothing to do with my own confidence in painting techniques. Detail loss due to multiple paint layers is not a matter of technique.
yeah it is, I manged to paint over mine with thin coats, and the detail is the same, exactly the same, it depends on how thick your coats are

Gaebriel
25-01-2008, 02:35
Reading all the sides' arguments, I begin to realize that both sides have a point. I just didn't realize until now, how craft-orientated GW's wargaming approach is, mostly due to my local clubs not putting that much emphasis on that (well, most is painted, but nobody talks about it much, most talk is about competitive gameplay).

I'm curious if it will remain that way, ie if the current and coming generation can carry that emphasis in a size category that GW wants/needs. I think at the moment nobody can really say that GW's declining sales are coming from less people interested in GW's way of approaching wargaming as opposed to other factors (pricing, macroeconimics).

It'll be interesting to see if Rakham gets off the ground now they seem to have survived their initial miscalcuation - as they are pioneering the change from a highly crafty/artistic approach to prepainted.

Naga
25-01-2008, 10:29
I'm curious if it will remain that way, ie if the current and coming generation can carry that emphasis in a size category that GW wants/needs.

That will actually be interesting to see, as ok looking prepaints are a relatively new option to miniature wargamers.

So I'm curious to see if/how the customerbase will seperate into players that just want a game with better optics, and players that consider the more laborious (but imho also more rewarding) crafting of personal armies and gaming tables an important part of their hobby.


Personally, I see some modern historic wargames (WWII, ...) and movie based wargames (Star Wars, Star Trek, ...) tend towards prepaints, as the emphasis is more on accurate imitation than creativity.

And more "freeform" fantasy and science-fiction wargames tending towards self-painting, as there is a lot more room for creativity, as well as a playerbase that wants to do "their" thing and would be alienated by too much uniformity. (Just watch the codex discussions or the "too many Smurfs" complaints.)

Easy E
25-01-2008, 10:42
The problem with Pre-paints in my mind is that they are all ready available all over the place. Their called Action Figures. I can walk into Wal-Mart and get 4 star wars stormtroopers painted up pretty nice for $9.99 (US). They even have packets with character models and packets with only troop models. The scale is consistent through the range, and even has a weapon variety and pose variety.

Now, how is GW going to compete with these. The only way is through the marketing of their universe and their rules.

Now, combine this with their attitude of being a miniatures company.

I think it is obvious, that GW can not switch to pre-paints and compete. Their are all ready too many large companies in that field. Pre-paints would only let people see how little GW offers them.

Templar Ben
25-01-2008, 11:04
Pre-paints would only let people see how little GW offers them.

That is what I said many times before. GW won't do it. They like to claim that they are the largest tabletop wargame. They are really just a third tier toy company. I can understand them not wanting to step into Hasbro's or Tamiya's backyard.

Ray_Bones
25-01-2008, 12:12
Reading all the sides' arguments, I begin to realize that both sides have a point. I just didn't realize until now, how craft-orientated GW's wargaming approach is, mostly due to my local clubs not putting that much emphasis on that (well, most is painted, but nobody talks about it much, most talk is about competitive gameplay).



I completely agree with the above, there have been some very good points raised on both sides of the fence in this discussion.

@ Osbad - I have about 1900 pts of Red Blok and I've been very impressed with quality and the paintjob on the mini's.

Osbad
25-01-2008, 13:43
Yup. There's more to "the hobby" than what we personally get out of. People who prefer gaming shouldn't expect a company to their particular preffered element, just as those who prefer modelling and/or painting or those who love the fluff shouldn't.

I would support GW producing PPP (at a sensible price, I agree with the poster who reckoned R's prices are a bit steep for AT-43, much as enjoy the game and collecting the models), but I wouldn't support them doing so at the expense of destroying the modelling/painting side.

At the end of the day, what really matters is whether GW believe there is a buck in it for them and it won't nerf the rest of their product range.

GW haven't exactly got a track record for far-sighted management decisions, so we'll see!

Crazy Harborc
26-01-2008, 01:17
I really doubt that GW putting out some pre-painted minies could ruin the assembly and painting side of GW's product line. I doubt it could ruin the hobby of wargaming either.

Heck, this has created a fun reading thread. I think that is about all that will come of it.;)

swordwind
26-01-2008, 02:04
Mongoose may not be as big as GW but its one of the larger miniature companies out there and so can be a clue as to what a GW prepaint may look like:
http://theminiaturespage.com/showcase/scfshowcase/2007/438034c.jpg
http://www.displacedminiatures.com/images/img.1172950081972.jpg

I rest my case

a guy with a gun
26-01-2008, 02:04
I'd be all over pre-painted models/terrain. I've seen very good pre painted models. IMO it's the future. It's good the have the option of painting if you want though.

Bloodknight
26-01-2008, 02:06
No wonder BFE failed. That's some cruddy paintjob and it would not be worth extra money to me. That's even worse than the AT43 prepaints.

The tank's not so bad, but the arab guy? Big meh. Looks like it comes from a Kinder egg, painted by Chinese kids until their fingers bled.

Easy E
26-01-2008, 11:45
Here's the Star Wars Unleashed figures I was refering too. This is $9.99 U.S. I'm not sure of the scale, but when i saw them instore I would say less than 54mm.

http://trus.imageg.net/graphics/product_images/pTRU1-2788347dt.jpg

Templar Ben
26-01-2008, 14:19
Here is a D&D mini with a drybrush and ink wash.

http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e88/Jenbar76/HGB6.jpg
http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e88/Jenbar76/HGB5.jpg
http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e88/Jenbar76/HGB4.jpg

Just needs some flock on the base.

Mad Doc Grotsnik
26-01-2008, 14:42
With the release of GW's half year figures tommorrow, I've been thinking about how a company goes about luring in new gamers. Specifically, how do you lure in gamers to a hobby that can be more time consuming and expensive than "plug and play" options like video and computer games?

I keep coming back to the idea of GW introducing a prepainted line to it's current offering of miniatures. While I understand that this is a very divisive idea in the current gaming community, I do think prepaints offer people the option of getting to the game itself much faster than the traditional route. Furthermore, the costs of modeling and painting miniatures are now gone from the potential gamer's horizon.

Given those two perks, there are naturally some downsides to the idea. One is the questionable quality of the miniatures themselves. Be it poor paint jobs, flimsy plastic or a lack of detail, pre painted minis are not the gorgeously sculpted minis that GW currently offers. Second is the argument that painting and modelling are core tenants to the hobby itself.

I understand that GW, specifically Jervis Johnson, has stated that pre painted minis are not in GW's future. Should they ever decide to go this route, which would be a big change of course, they would almost have to continue to produce and support the unpainted lines so as not to alienate the current core gamers. But given all this, and many points that I have not touched on, here's the question(s):

Where do you sit on the whole idea of pre painted minis and the idea of GW implementing them into their current product lines?

If not prepainted minis, what other ideas would you suggest to lure new players into the hobby?

Unlike WotC, GW are not selling models. Instead, they are flogging a *Hobby* to punters. PRe-paints are, in essence, the antithesis of the wargame as a hobby. Pre built, pre painted, wheres the point?

GW just needs to push it as a father/son bonding opportunity really.

Templar Ben
26-01-2008, 15:42
Unlike WotC, GW are not selling models. Instead, they are flogging a *Hobby* to punters. PRe-paints are, in essence, the antithesis of the wargame as a hobby. Pre built, pre painted, wheres the point?

Presculpted, premolded, ready made terrain, where's the point? I understand the fear that you have but why is this line the one that is too far?


GW just needs to push it as a father/son bonding opportunity really.

That would be a very interesting take. In the United States, that is precisely what Lionel trains did back in the 50's. Here is an old advertisement.

http://i5.ebayimg.com/02/i/000/c6/03/23a0_1.JPG

It worked in the US 50 years ago rather well. It would be interesting to see how well such a campaign would work now. Would you propose trying to get vets to bring in their kids or focus on growing with fathers and sons learning together (which is what Lionel did)?

Easy E
26-01-2008, 15:51
Just to clarify, the Star Wars figures I posted were available in Wal-mart/Target/Major Retailers.

I personally think GW is going about things all wrong. Instead of being a miniatures company they need to be a gaming company again. Frankly, they don't have what it takes to compete in the modern business world as simply a miniature company. They have to sell their games and once people want to play their games they will want their miniatures. To look at it the other way around is foolish. Once they see themselves as a games company pre-paints make a lot more sense.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not a fan of pre-paints, but to avoid them all together makes no sense to me. They need a small Heroquest/Space Hulk/Battlemasters style game with pre-painted figures they can get to ordinary retailers as a gateway game. Once you have people hooked on your games and game universe, they will buy models for it.

Templar Ben
26-01-2008, 17:43
Easy, several pages ago that is what was being suggested but have the game with the same mechanics as the core game so that the transition is easier. Like with the Space Hulk game, have it with the same turn sequence so that it is easier to have them add some IG or necrons and also if and when they do shift to 40K it will be something they can pick up quickly.

Huw_Dawson
26-01-2008, 17:52
DEVILS ADVOCATE.

I'm thinking of Ultramarines. Paint them blue, ink them with dark blue ink, pick out the shoulder pads in a good strong yellow, the guns in red, then the metalic points in a dark silver...

Not exactly hard to make them look better than most Tourney SM players would be willing to play with, surely? The unpainted plastic/metal models would still be available, but for the conveniance to people who hate painting SM...

- Huw

newpaintbrush
27-01-2008, 10:45
Where do you sit on the whole idea of pre painted minis and the idea of GW implementing them into their current product lines?

If not prepainted minis, what other ideas would you suggest to lure new players into the hobby?

I personally think that prepainted minis are a great idea that a lot of professionals that don't have the time to paint, or the time to look around for an army painting service, will support.

Frankly, I think Jervis Johnson's position that "GW will never do prepainted armies" is a load of rubbish. GW can and should go with whatever generates the most profit. And considering the short-term strategies GW is currently using (i.e. putting out crappy rules, putting out a number of models that don't go together very well, promoting this whole "'Ard Boyz" thing in the United States where you don't have to paint your models to participate) - I think it's clear that GW has already decided to spit on the idea of a cohesive group of gamers that get around to play a well-designed and written game. With that in mind, I am damn surprised we are not already seeing loads of prepainted minis flooding the market.

I don't think anyone would argue that for the most part, at least in the United States, people view Warhammer as a competition. Either they are competing to paint the best models (relatively rare), or they are competing to build the most broken power gaming army they can (common, and more than common, and in which case said gamers don't give a rat's ass if their army is painted, or even assembled in a lot of cases).

Just watch and see.

Easy E
27-01-2008, 12:00
Easy, several pages ago that is what was being suggested but have the game with the same mechanics as the core game so that the transition is easier. Like with the Space Hulk game, have it with the same turn sequence so that it is easier to have them add some IG or necrons and also if and when they do shift to 40K it will be something they can pick up quickly.

I'm glad to hear I'm on the same page as a lot of other people. It makes a nice change of pace.


GW can and should go with whatever generates the most profit. And considering the short-term strategies GW is currently using (i.e. putting out crappy rules, putting out a number of models that don't go together very well, promoting this whole "'Ard Boyz" thing in the United States where you don't have to paint your models to participate) - I think it's clear that GW has already decided to spit on the idea of a cohesive group of gamers that get around to play a well-designed and written game. With that in mind, I am damn surprised we are not already seeing loads of prepainted minis flooding the market.

I don't think anyone would argue that for the most part, at least in the United States, people view Warhammer as a competition. Either they are competing to paint the best models (relatively rare), or they are competing to build the most broken power gaming army they can (common, and more than common, and in which case said gamers don't give a rat's ass if their army is painted, or even assembled in a lot of cases).

I agree with both of your points.

As a citizen of the United States, I really don't understand our nearly overwhelming need to make everything in life a competition. In my experieince, the only GW related events that ever draw a lot of players are tournaments. Megabattles, Demo days, Campaign weekends, Iron Builders, Bring & Battles etc. don't seem to do anything. Sad really.

Oh yes, I think pre-paints should just be another tool for GW to hook people on their plastic crack. They should practically give away the starter sets. Do pushers ask you to pay a hefty fee up front. No. So gW should sell a nice gateway game at major retailers, potentially at a loss to themselves.

Jan Skarthen
27-01-2008, 14:34
Ok let's step back and look at what models GW could release as prepainted without too much fuss. The trick would be to have them prepainted to a gaming standard that if the collector wanted they could add their own details to them if they wished. I know that I own so many base troops for some of my forces that I will never get round to painting, I would be more than happy to paint characters and special units/tanks and as long as prepaints used the same colour pallet, army visual consistency shouldn't be affected.

The thought of painting 200 odd assorted clanrats and slaves makes me feel defeated before I start. If I could have bought same said figures prepainted and assembled I would have. The thing is I love painting as part of the hobby but having a 12000 point Vampire counts force and about the same in Orcs and Gobbos fully painted the thought of painting up another horde army would be less painful with the option to buy pre-paints.

Troops like skeletons, Orc boys and Gobbos could easily be prepaints with option to personalise shields, bases etc. As for 40K the same could be seen for Cadians, I play Valhallans and have about 150 Imperial Guardsmen 2 ten strong units are painted the rest in various stages of completion. Prepaints would allow me to quickly purchase and field an army out of the box.

In conclusion I think there is a market for both types of figures and if GW explored this possibility I'm sure they could produce plastic miniatures painted to a good quality, it might however be the cost which proves restrictive.

Templar Ben
27-01-2008, 15:20
As a citizen of the United States, I really don't understand our nearly overwhelming need to make everything in life a competition. In my experieince, the only GW related events that ever draw a lot of players are tournaments. Megabattles, Demo days, Campaign weekends, Iron Builders, Bring & Battles etc. don't seem to do anything. Sad really.

It is an interesting topic that I would love to explore but I am sure that would go P&R quickly. There is no doubt that Privateer Press in American.


Oh yes, I think pre-paints should just be another tool for GW to hook people on their plastic crack. They should practically give away the starter sets. Do pushers ask you to pay a hefty fee up front. No. So gW should sell a nice gateway game at major retailers, potentially at a loss to themselves.

That is what many would love to see. A game in WalMart to introduce GW products to that wide world out there.


Ok let's step back and look at what models GW could release as prepainted without too much fuss. The trick would be to have them prepainted to a gaming standard that if the collector wanted they could add their own details to them if they wished. I know that I own so many base troops for some of my forces that I will never get round to painting, I would be more than happy to paint characters and special units/tanks and as long as prepaints used the same colour pallet, army visual consistency shouldn't be affected.

The thought of painting 200 odd assorted clanrats and slaves makes me feel defeated before I start. If I could have bought same said figures prepainted and assembled I would have. The thing is I love painting as part of the hobby but having a 12000 point Vampire counts force and about the same in Orcs and Gobbos fully painted the thought of painting up another horde army would be less painful with the option to buy pre-paints.

Troops like skeletons, Orc boys and Gobbos could easily be prepaints with option to personalise shields, bases etc. As for 40K the same could be seen for Cadians, I play Valhallans and have about 150 Imperial Guardsmen 2 ten strong units are painted the rest in various stages of completion. Prepaints would allow me to quickly purchase and field an army out of the box.

In conclusion I think there is a market for both types of figures and if GW explored this possibility I'm sure they could produce plastic miniatures painted to a good quality, it might however be the cost which proves restrictive.

People aren't saying go prepaint totally. I think the fear is that prepaints would be so successful that GW would abandon unpainted models.

Jan Skarthen
27-01-2008, 15:55
I think they make too much money from paint and hobby supplies to do away with painting all together. The point I was making was I would support a move to releasing prepainted stuff predominantly in the core category as per army books.

Templar Ben
27-01-2008, 16:47
I think they make too much money from paint and hobby supplies to do away with painting all together. The point I was making was I would support a move to releasing prepainted stuff predominantly in the core category as per army books.

I agree there is a large markup on the painting supplies. There is more money to be made however on prepaints then there is on unpainted models and hobby supplies. That is why people are concerned. GW will look and say the prepaints are selling much better and we are getting a good deal of money. It would simplify our supply chain if we went to prepaints for all core choices in fantasy and all troop choices in 40k. Once they start, they may not look back.

I also don't think that would happen the fear is well founded.

Arbas
14-02-2008, 10:35
I think you're going down the wrong track with prepainted minis - GW need a killer small game with a small figure count of easy to assemble minis to sell around the 25 price point in the likes of Toys-R-Us - keep either a 40k or WHFB setting but the game has to be GOOD, it would be cheap enough to buy for little Johnnys birthday, quick to assemble and fun to play while dropping enough core game culture into the players minds to entice them into the full "hobby", a small figure count would help keep the price down and avoid the problem of not being able to use the figs in 40k/WHFB (keep them the same scale to allow use as minor characters perhaps) - Quest would be ideal apart from the figure count (for the bad guys obviously) - I've tried it with my kids over the rainy summer and they loved it (ages 9, 7 and 4)