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Aeron
13-12-2011, 15:14
I've read many comments from posters on Warseer and other forums such as dakka saying that Fantasy is less popular. Some people even say Fanasy it loses GW money.

I commented on a Fantasy computer game in the gaming section and a few comments;


The hobby is awesome, and I really like it. That being said, Warhammer Fantasy is not the most well-known of games (much harder to find games than Warmachine or Warhammer 40k).


Do you happen to be from the US by any chance?

I'm not picking on these two imperticular but why must it be a US thing? Why guess America - is it true Fantasy sells less in America and what are the reasons for this. I thought all that 'medieval knights vs dragons' fairy tale stuff was well liked over there. But then I'm bringing my own bias into it....it's just hear'say tbh.

Also, I often read that Warhammer Fantasy is really popular in Australia, considerably more than 40k. :confused:

Is this all just gossip and peoples personal experiences or is there any reason to this perception. Why the disperate attitudes between the two?

What about the UK? Is it 40k mad or more evenly split? If so why?

Cheers

Nate.

Confessor_Atol
13-12-2011, 15:24
First off, if Fantasy is loosign money in the states, it's because GW's overhead is too high. It simply set up too many mall and strip-mall stores.

Really though it seems like 40k is most attractive to people in their teens and early 20's. They have money and time to hang out in stores. I play once a week at a friends house, or sometimes we go to a warhammer night and get a game with new people. When I go to a store, I typically know what I want and am in and out within 6 min. I can't agrue that my experience is typical of warhammer players in their 30's, but that's what I do.

Spiney Norman
13-12-2011, 15:24
I find in my local area (UK, North Notts) that 40K is more popular among teenage gamers, but once gamers get to the late teens/twenties its about evenly split, indeed most gamers I know who are 18+ play both WFB and 40K.

Generally in my area WFB is perceived as a game for more experienced gamers, whereas 40K is seen more as a promo-to-the-kids, pick-up-and-play game.

I've never, to my knowledge, met anyone who plays warmachine, although that might be because 1. I don't play it myself and 2. I haven't been looking.

Razuli
13-12-2011, 15:26
In my own narrow personal experience, 40k is a lot more popular here in America than fantasy is. My lgs has 3 gaming tables for warhammmer and most of the time I walk in they are filled with 40k games. Most of the 40k Players at my store have fantasy armies but even since 6th ed (when I started fantasy) 40k dominated the scene, if you wanted to play fantasy you usually had to find someone who is interested a few days in advance and take steps to get a table. That probally also has to do with my LGs being pretty small too though.

brother_maynard
13-12-2011, 15:28
i was under the impression that 40k vastly outsells fantasy in the US but trails it worldwide. and as someone who lives in the US, my personal experience is that yes, 40k dominates fantasy. the average 40k gaming group is triple or so the size of the average fantasy group around here (and that was before 8th ed killed the local fantasy communities). we are just now seeing a fantasy resurgence as people cross over from 40k, disillusioned by playing against nothing but space marine variants and the game being dominated by certain builds.

Nubl0
13-12-2011, 15:29
I can imagine it struggles in america, as it not only has to compete with 40k but also warmachine and hordes. both of which have a much larger following in america than over here in the UK. Took me quite awhile to find people that played warmahordes and even then we only play it once every few weeks as we all have nice WFB armies too.

Around here thanks to the local gw you cna get a game of 40k pretty much any day of the week, fantasy you can get one almost every day just not all the time as the people that tend to play it are older with less time.

The bearded one
13-12-2011, 15:32
(and that was before 8th ed killed the local fantasy communities).

Which is in itself very peculiar, as 8th edition brought not but good and brought the game back from total oblivion to decent balance.

theshoveller
13-12-2011, 15:37
40k is a much more distinctive property than WFB - in the US, WFB is competing with D&D Miniatures, Mage Knight, Hordes and so on (and broke into an already saturated market, fighting for retail space with them). While there are lots of sci-fi skirmish games, 40k is a highly recognisable product. Most gamers would recognise a space marine if they saw one, but if you asked someone to distinguish between a WFB orc and one from another fantasy game, I doubt many could make a distinction. In part, the success of Dawn of War brought 40k to a global market. WFB hasn't had a success like that in the internet era (Shadow of the Horned Rat was a hell of a game, but came out before internet use was as ubiquitous as it is today).

Warhammer's place in the US market isn't going to be representative of its place within the company, or in the gaming market in general. GW is a British company and looks on Britain as its primary market (and the nature of our economy means that they're likely to look towards Europe as the next most important).

loveless
13-12-2011, 15:38
We Americans like our automatic weapons, missiles, and tanks. Fantasy is lacking a bit in that department. :p

That said, I think the biggest issue with Fantasy around here is still the rank-and-file nature of it.

"I need to buy how many boxes to make one unit?" compared to smaller box counts in 40K and Warmachine. Honestly, I'm not sure why GW packages WHFB the way they do - they throw out 10-man boxes for WHFB when a standard unit size is going to be 20+ in most cases.

40K has its own packaging problems, but they're less apparent, IMO. A 5-man Terminator squad is perfectly usable, even if the max size is 10. The 5-man Troop/Elite boxes are questionable, but are often bulkier than equivalents in WHFB. It's odd to say, but I feel like I'm getting more bang for my buck when I'm working on $60 of 40K vs. $60 of Fantasy (notable exception: plastic Zombie Dragon - worth every penny).

The other thing that springs to mind is the widespread knowledge of the Dawn of War and Space Marine games. GW has struggled to license out a good, positively memorable WHFB-based game. W:AR was (is?) quaint at best and a useless exercise in PvP at worst. The RTS version of Fantasy (Mark of Chaos?) never seemed to catch on.

Personally, I like WHFB (especially 8th), but I have trouble painting (let alone buying) 200+ plastic rats or 100+ plastic undead when a square piece of cardboard does the same thing - 50%+ of those models are just glorified wound counters.

With 40K, if I buy 10 Necron Immortals, all 10 have a definite chance to contribute to my army's rate of fire and damage output. 10 Terminators means 10 bruisers who have a damn good chance of getting stuck into a combat and individually wrecking face.

I think you get more of a personal connection with 40K models - you can really go to town with posing and conversions and single Troop models. Your opponents can learn to fear Brother Nero, the tactical marine firing a bolter in one hand and a bolt pistol in the other because he managed to pick the last wounds off the Ork Warboss after the rest of his squad died. Hell, back at the beginning of 4th, I had one particular Arco-flagellant that had accomplished such ridiculous feats of murder that he quickly became the go-to target for my regular opponents.

With Fantasy, the most "locally renown" models were Lord and Hero choices - the troops and such were just meaningless placeholders while Wizards blew them away and heroes cut through them with the Enchanted Sword of Truthiness. Skeleton #27 isn't very likely to stand out from his fellows, nor is High Elf Spearman Ellisyr or Ork Boy Grum Toothcracka.

Fantasy often feels like you're just moving blocks around while 40K can feel like an interactive war movie (and there are games that do it a lot better than 40K, as well!).

The Low King
13-12-2011, 15:49
Fantasy is very strong in my area...i see many more games than 40k

Near my Uni it is also very strong....played a lot by teenagers

8th really gave it a boost here, we love it :D

this is in the UK

eron12
13-12-2011, 16:20
I think my area is a bit different than normal. I think Fantasy slightly edges out 40k, though I think Warmachine/Hordes is slightly more popular still.

However, the other game store I'm familiar with apparently has no fantasy players (barring a friend of mine who has never been able to play there) and one owner has an "in progress" fantasy army.

As to why that is, I've always found more Americans to be fans of SciFi over fantasy when it comes to genres.

And of course it doesn't help that GW is so UK focused. I was going to refer to the North American market as GW's redheaded step child, but then I remebered Australia/NZ.

Numero-Uno
13-12-2011, 16:28
Text.

You bring up alot of good points. I've never thought about it that way.

Lyonator
13-12-2011, 16:29
I stopped playing Fantasy when the current edition came out and nerfed my Woodies.
(I had a hard enough time winning games BEFORE they got bent over)

that being said, Fantasy has died off a lot locally since the current edition released, so it's probably not just me.
We'll see how the game fares next time around.

boli
13-12-2011, 16:43
In general I saw people played W40k as it was cheaper/easier to get into and quicker to pick up. Afterall buy a squad of space marines and you can get right into a skirmish.... it isn't as easy with WFB.

In fact if you wanted a boxset each side in WFB it would be a very boring game (charge, 1 turn of combat, oh I won); you *need* multiple units and larger units to truely appriciate the game. I honestly think WFB is a *lot* better game... but w40k has a *lot* better lore/background and is easier to pick up. GW have done it right in one way... the games play *completly* different and its not just like replacing guns for spears... or even bows.

Because of the smaller scale of w40k however you could turn up at a mates house with 5 terminator models and have a great time - not so easy with WFB. You can't exactly fit 40 dwaves, 2 characters in 3 units and a warmachine in your coat pocket. (and that's a small useable skimisher force from one of the SMALLER armies!).

This is prob why necomunda and bloodbowl were pretty popular...

lbecks
13-12-2011, 18:09
Most people I know love Space Marines and the SM history/mythology. Americans in general like really big guys with guns shooting everything in sight. GW admitted that WFB does less well everywhere and there's a concentrated effort to catch it up with 40k's popularity.

The Low King
13-12-2011, 18:14
This is the kind of statement i find interesting in these discussions:


I stopped playing Fantasy when the current edition came out and nerfed my Woodies.
(I had a hard enough time winning games BEFORE they got bent over)

that being said, Fantasy has died off a lot locally since the current edition released, so it's probably not just me.
We'll see how the game fares next time around.

Because i started playing again then 8th came out because my dwarfs could now do well....the local woodelf player also felt it was now easier to win

i guess it depends on your point of veiw

Verchild
13-12-2011, 18:27
We Americans like our automatic weapons, missiles, and tanks. Fantasy is lacking a bit in that department. :p


Skaven have automatic weapons, missles, and the Empire loves it some STank action. ;) Just saying. :p

But in going with the rest of your statement, I kind of agree with you. I LOVE Fantasy, and my friends only recently invested in minimal 40k armies to just experience it and move back to Fantasy.
But I can completely see your point of view that out of the 50 Skeletons in my VC army, I put effort into 3 of them. Once my command was done. The rest got the dry-brush white treatment, and are really just there to be killed, and raised back again.

I do think that Fantasy is a more difficult game to play though. There are easier lists that win more, but for the most part there is a stratagy of placement, objectives and tactics. While 40k ( to me at least ) seems to be mostly a game of "Shoot them while we get close enough to punch them!". I know there IS a tactic to it, but I'm just missing it... ( Most likely hard to see through all those 3+ armor saves in the way ).

minionboy
13-12-2011, 18:30
I play in San Francisco and we regularly have poor 40k nights and packed fantasy nights. It's probably more based on where you live.

Dominatrix
13-12-2011, 18:39
My job requires me to travel internationally a lot. I have visited quite a few stores and talked to people and they all seem to agree on the same points. 40K is a lot more popular than Fantasy in the US (by a wide margin). The same thing goes for the rest of the world, but in the US the difference is a lot more pronounced. The main reasons seem to be the following, based on what I have heard / know.

First of all as a previous poster eloquently put it Americans love guns! :D Tanks, robots all these things draw people, especially younger ones.

Second 40K has received a lot more exposure than Fantasy. By that I mean computer games and even the incredibly successful HH book series.

40K is a lot more "cost effective" than Fantasy because it has a greater number of plastic kits, thus cheaper armies. Fantasy has taken quite a few steps to remedy that with the introduction of more plastic kits, but even so it is nowhere near 40K. In addition to this you need fewer models for a 40K army compared to a Fantasy one, thus lower expenses. This also explains why young people tend to prefer 40K, given their usually limited budgets compared to older players.

kaulem
13-12-2011, 18:48
This is the kind of statement i find interesting in these discussions:



Because i started playing again then 8th came out because my dwarfs could now do well....the local woodelf player also felt it was now easier to win

i guess it depends on your point of veiw

When 8th first came out our local woodelf player was all gloom & doom

"Oh no, my woodies are doomed!"

I think he's won 3/4 of his games in 8th.

He had to change his lists dramaticaly, but it's working for him.

kaulem
13-12-2011, 19:14
On a similar note, our local Nurgle Deamons player said,

"oooh! they nerfed my deamons, I won't be ashamed in playing them anyome!"

After a couple of masacres on his part, he decided to re-shelf his deamons.

loveless
13-12-2011, 19:16
Skaven have automatic weapons, missles, and the Empire loves it some STank action. ;) Just saying. :p


And I've played both! :p

Then I stopped because people didn't like playing against Steam Tanks or my Skryre list with their Greenskins and Wood Elves :(

It seems to be far easier to hamstring yourself in WHFB like that (especially in 7th) - not everything is at the same power level. This is also true of 40K, but with my friends it came out easier in WHFB. I was inadvertently attracted to the "strong" armies of the edition (seriously, I went Empire to Skaven to Vampires to Dark Elves and back to Skaven throughout 7th) while others were drawn to things like Wood Elves, Orcs & Goblins, and Tomb Kings. It got to the point where it didn't matter what my list consisted of - the book was busted, my opponent had already given himself a loss.

In 8th, the balance isn't as horrible, though there are still issues. I can't talk people back into it, though. The only Fantasy players I see around here are either 12-16 or 40+, neither of which are groups I feel comfortable in.

Eddie Chaos
13-12-2011, 19:26
It's because in England Knights and Giants are a very real part of our history, if there were cowboys in fantasy the Americans would get on board too.

The Low King
13-12-2011, 19:27
and Pirates and....lots of the stuff in fantasy

europe has good mythology

AlphaLegionMarine
13-12-2011, 19:40
Cowboys aren't as popular as they used to be here in the states. In my local shop, it's 40k and Warmahordes that are on the top of the heap. Fantasy has a handful of players, maybe 5.

march10k
13-12-2011, 19:41
Having lived and played in all corners of America, I think it's fair to say that 40k is at least three times as popular here...but. There's always a "but." In my own experience, fantasy players tend to be hobbyists first and gamers second. That translates directly into a higher level of sportsmanship and far more fully painted armies than you're likely to encounter in 40k. 95% of the fantasy players that I've known actually play both systems (and some also play flames of war...it boggles the mind that they have time), and their attitude/sense of fair play, as well as the paint jobs on their models, are just as top-shelf in 40k as they are in fantasy. So maybe it's a maturity thing more than a "tactical accumen" thing. In any case, if you meet someone playing 40k whose army looks just fantastic, who is agreeable, and knows the rules, but approaches violations with a "lets learn the right way" attitude, rather than jumping into a flame war with both feet...chances are, he also plays fantasy.


if there were cowboys in fantasy the Americans would get on board too.
Pardon me while I roll my eyes...by your prejudiced logic, WFB should be wildly popular here, and we should all play lizardmen.

bolshie
13-12-2011, 19:44
Because i started playing again then 8th came out because my dwarfs could now do well....the local woodelf player also felt it was now easier to win

Indeed, I found it a rather strange comment.

Kallstrom
13-12-2011, 20:05
It's because in England Knights and Giants are a very real part of our history, if there were cowboys in fantasy the Americans would get on board too.

If I were to "play my part" I would be a Marauder of Chaos. Being a battle-born muscle mass with a hard on for devotions to ruinous powers is not my cup of tea though. I would rather be a Knight of the Realm, just so I could boss the filthy peasants around! :cool:
I would rather slap a peasant around during every hour of every day than charging headlong into battle and ending up with a sword through the gut if I lost or a sword coming out of my forehead if I won. Oh, chaos and their deluded rewarding system. <3

Okuto
13-12-2011, 20:09
I live in the states and generally 40k is alot more popular than fantasy though that's generally cause alot of those said players(myself included) are also FOW/historical players....though it's alot easier to get a warmachine game in than 40k or fantasy.....

I only see the kiddies and old schoolers(like me) play fantasy....most of the 20 somethings play 40k or warmachine....

Snowflake
13-12-2011, 21:39
First off, if Fantasy is loosign money in the states, it's because GW's overhead is too high. It simply set up too many mall and strip-mall stores.

Really though it seems like 40k is most attractive to people in their teens and early 20's. They have money and time to hang out in stores. I play once a week at a friends house, or sometimes we go to a warhammer night and get a game with new people. When I go to a store, I typically know what I want and am in and out within 6 min. I can't agrue that my experience is typical of warhammer players in their 30's, but that's what I do.

This runs directly counter to my experience, so I'll register a dissenting opinion. Maybe that's how it is elsewhere, but here in the states 40k is the mainstay. My group for example has exactly one guy who's still in HS, and we just picked up a couple of new people from the local university. The rest are all older, some by quite a bit, and a few of them have kids.

There are a variety of reasons why 40k is more popular, but by far the biggest factor is cost. You can put together a 40k army for a LOT less than a fantasy army, and with some the difference is mindboggling. I just put together a new Dark Eldar army from scratch, 1500 points, and it cost me maybe 400. That amount of points in fantasy would probably have cost 5-600, depending on which army, and obviously nobody plays 1500 points of fantasy. It's a combination of higher points values per model in 40k (unless you're orks or IG), and lower playing levels (between 1500 and 2k depending on where you are).

There's lots of other factors, from shorter setup time (fewer models), more streamlined ruleset, generally shorter playtimes, etc etc. Many are subjective, others not so much.

And from a personal note, I know a lot of people who can't stand the fact that so many fantasy players refuse to play by the actual rules. Lots of people don't want to use terrain, don't want to run scenarios, and want to comp the hell out of the armies to make it more "fun." Here in the Northeast at least, it means that I CANNOT go to a store in a town even 1 hour away and know what kind of game I'm playing, and forget about travelling farther. Despite the fact that I run an army that never gets affected much by comp (TK), it's still annoying as hell to not know what rules you'll be using till you get there. You just don't see that crap in 40k. Except for a couple of isolated pockets, everyone is playing by the same rules. Makes travel with 40k easy, and since a lot of players in the US travel around due to work, it means you can get an easy pickup game of 40k if you want to, and it's a roll of the dice if you'll get a fantasy game, or some bastardized version that uses 3/4 of the ruleset.

Post-shower edit : That shouldn't set off a comp debate. Whether comp is good or not has been done to death. Fact is, lots and lots of fantasy clubs use comp of some sort, and you never really know what it'll be till you get there. My brother came and visited me a few months back, and brought his Nids with him. He was able to go to the local store and get a couple games of 40k in, and he knew it was going to be with the ruleset he knew, since comp doesn't exist in 40k mostly. Had he brought his Vampire Counts, he couldn't have made that assumption. Same goes for me, if I want to visit my folks or the in-laws, I'll be bringing Dark Eldar, and not Tomb Kings. I won't know whether I'll even be able to bring the TK army I'm working on, which has probably 60+ bow shots in its latest experimental build. I won't know whether I can experiment with using Settra or Khatep. I won't even know whether I'll be playing on a football field using battleline for every game, or whether it'll be an actual table. These things don't happen in 40k. I know with my DE that I'll see a good amount of terrain (in most places anyway), it'll be the standard rolls for deployment and scenario, and I can bring whatever I want from my list. That matters a lot in a place where it's not uncommon for people to move huge distances every few years for work.

Andy p
13-12-2011, 22:17
Which is in itself very peculiar, as 8th edition brought not but good and brought the game back from total oblivion to decent balance.

Pretty much this in my area. In fact several of the 40k gamers at my local club have also started fantasy armies. :D

Nubl0
13-12-2011, 22:25
Going to have to agree with the above. Even over here in england most people don't use half the stuff in the fantasy BRB. Funny thing is that it's actually the casual/fluff pick up games I get that dont ever want to do scenarios or use the terrain rules. At the club I go to however I play against people who the "fluff nuts" call jerks for taking good lists, I don't mean pure filth either just actaully reading the book and taking units that are cool AND effective... where was I going with this? Oh yeah they all like to use scenarios and terrain generation and they all go to tournements, kinda funny.

loveless
13-12-2011, 22:27
You point out that there are scenarios in the BRB for Fantasy and most of the people complaining about it go "...nuh uh!"

I always hated Pitched Battles...I prefer games that are less straight-forward than "I put up my guys on my long table side, you do the same on yours, and we'll move forward until they bump into each other!"

bolshie
13-12-2011, 23:17
That amount of points in fantasy would probably have cost 5-600, depending on which army, and obviously nobody plays 1500 points of fantasy. It's a combination of higher points values per model in 40k (unless you're orks or IG), and lower playing levels (between 1500 and 2k depending on where you are).

I don't know where you are buying you figures but I doubt a 1500 point army costs anywhere like the figure you quoted.

As for no one playing 1500 point games, the local club often play games at that points level. In fact it is a very good game at that level. You can easily run a 4 game tournament in a day, and it might be a good way to get more players interested.

I agree with your point about not playing by the rules, having different rules in different areas etc. IMO it is a result of the hysteria surrounding the release of 8th with people unwilling to just play the game as it is, instead of clinging on to the rather ritualised and dull 7th edition.

Eddie Chaos
13-12-2011, 23:28
Pardon me while I roll my eyes...by your prejudiced logic, WFB should be wildly popular here, and we should all play lizardmen.

To be fair I was joking, I think the clue was when I referred to Giants as being real. I intended no offence and apologize if the internet rendered my sarcasm mute.

The Low King
13-12-2011, 23:35
I don't know where you are buying you figures but I doubt a 1500 point army costs anywhere like the figure you quoted.

As for no one playing 1500 point games, the local club often play games at that points level. In fact it is a very good game at that level. You can easily run a 4 game tournament in a day, and it might be a good way to get more players interested.

I agree with your point about not playing by the rules, having different rules in different areas etc. IMO it is a result of the hysteria surrounding the release of 8th with people unwilling to just play the game as it is, instead of clinging on to the rather ritualised and dull 7th edition.

true dat, so long as you are playing a decent opponant (who doesnt take just one unit of bulls at 1500 points...) small games can be very fun.

Also, my first warhammer games were tiny skirmish games using guys from a single box....thats what started me on the path...to truth?

I actually really like the scenarios and terrain, adds an extra tactical dimension

Snowflake
14-12-2011, 00:12
I don't know where you are buying you figures but I doubt a 1500 point army costs anywhere like the figure you quoted.

As for no one playing 1500 point games, the local club often play games at that points level. In fact it is a very good game at that level. You can easily run a 4 game tournament in a day, and it might be a good way to get more players interested.

I agree with your point about not playing by the rules, having different rules in different areas etc. IMO it is a result of the hysteria surrounding the release of 8th with people unwilling to just play the game as it is, instead of clinging on to the rather ritualised and dull 7th edition.

Depends on the army. Any army with lots of low point infantry gets expensive fast. 35 dollars for a box of 10 models when you need 50 or 100 really adds up.

Sent from my SPH-D700 using Tapatalk

Maskedman5oh4
14-12-2011, 00:42
I never thought about it before, but loveless makes a great point about unit sizes. In 40k, you buy a tactical squad and you have exactly that. Same goes for most units outside of 'Nids and Orks. In fantasy, most units require a minimum of two boxes- and often times 3-4- before you get a playable unit. Not only is this expensive, but it can be quite daunting to get such large units painted.

The Low King
14-12-2011, 00:45
So would an army of Guard conscripts.....its up to you if you want to go for that

You can get 1500 points of dwarfs for $200, maybe even 2000 depending on your list...

2 battalions, runelord, Lord/BSB, grudge thrower...(250ish $)
-thats 3 warmachines (400), 2 hordes of Warriors/longbeards (800ish points), solid unit of quarrellers/thunderers (400ish) , all your characters (300-450)...more if you do some conversions...

another $100 could easily get you to 2500 points with a bit of flexibility in what you go for....

Thats a mid range army for cost of units: You have elves, WOC, Daemons, Ogres costing more points per model and O&G, Skaven, Empire, VC, TK costing less.

Compare it to Tau (only 40k book i have)
-2 Battalions, hammerhead, 3 battlesuits= 300ish $
thats 2 fire warrior teams with a fish and some upgrades (400pts), 24 kroot (170pts), Hammerhead (150ish), Commander+ some battlesuits with upgrades (300ish...maybe 400), 2xstealth team with upgrades (300ish), gun drone unit (100ish)...so almost 1500 points

(if my maths is wrong please say, its 1am)


Space marines may be much better priced (seeming as thats the most popular army) but most of the others seem to be about equal or cost more...

Rosstifer
14-12-2011, 00:59
I agree with the Low King, my Chaos Space Marines cost more than my Warriors of Chaos. Obliterators and Rhinos admittedly raise up the cost massively. Rhinos have to be one of the worst point for dollar units, and you pretty much have to go Mech or go home.

bolshie
14-12-2011, 01:18
I agree with the Low King, my Chaos Space Marines cost more than my Warriors of Chaos. Obliterators and Rhinos admittedly raise up the cost massively. Rhinos have to be one of the worst point for dollar units, and you pretty much have to go Mech or go home.

Ah yes... the Rhino ward save....

Agoz
14-12-2011, 03:46
The way I understand it is this, America is, compared to European countries, quite young, we never had a medieval period, so it is more difficult to relate to a game set in that time frame, most of our biggest achievements have been set in the modern world, and as such modern weaponry is more ingrained in the American mindset than swords and sorcery is, we just lack the history and mythos for it.

Luigi
14-12-2011, 04:16
That 40k is more popular than fantasy is one of the first thing (related to the gaming environment) I noticed when I came to Canada from Italy. Back home when speaking of Warhammer people mean fantasy and they specify only in case it is 40k. Further more people over there only play fantasy or both games, I do not think I know anyone who plays only 40k. Over here is quite the opposite: 40k seems to be more of a mainstream when coming to wargaming, in fact I believe I am the only person I know here in Canada who plays only fantasy.
And I do not believe that it is a problem with relating to medieval period or not, as a matter of fact the King of fantasy games was born in the states conceived by the mind of an american. I actually believe that since America never had its middle ages it needed its own version, hence D&D, but due to the different nature of the 2 games: WHFB a more "square and compacted" game vs 40k a more "open and spread" game the appeal seems to be more on the space edition of warhammer

AlphariusOmegon20
14-12-2011, 05:37
40k is a much more distinctive property than WFB - in the US, WFB is competing with D&D Miniatures, Mage Knight, Hordes and so on (and broke into an already saturated market, fighting for retail space with them).

Wait, what? :wtf:

WFB was created in 1983. MK, Hordes, and the current incarnation of D&D didn't come out until the 2000's. If anything, those 3 are trying to play catchup with WFB. In addition, D&D has been cancelled by WOTC and will not have any new set releases after 2012.



While there are lots of sci-fi skirmish games, 40k is a highly recognisable product.

I'll give you that.


Most gamers would recognise a space marine if they saw one, but if you asked someone to distinguish between a WFB orc and one from another fantasy game, I doubt many could make a distinction.

I'll give you this one too. An orc is an orc, is an orc.



In part, the success of Dawn of War brought 40k to a global market.

One could argue that Dawn of War had to compete against Starcraft and still does.


WFB hasn't had a success like that in the internet era (Shadow of the Horned Rat was a hell of a game, but came out before internet use was as ubiquitous as it is today).

I think Warhammer Online argues that. Now with consoles, that's a different matter entirely.


Warhammer's place in the US market isn't going to be representative of its place within the company, or in the gaming market in general.

Agreed.


GW is a British company and looks on Britain as its primary market (and the nature of our economy means that they're likely to look towards Europe as the next most important).


Sorry, this I just don't buy. If that were the case, then why even bother setting up and maintaining the American HQ at all, many years ago? Why even keep it now, if what you believe is true?

GW's own actions years ago speak loud on what they consider important concerning the continents.

With that all said, 40K is designed currently as a game for the pre-adult set, a group of people that have little money and even smaller attention spans.

Darkspear
14-12-2011, 05:52
I am not an American. I am Singaporean and would like to discuss from my perspective.

In Singapore, we used to have a very big fantasy scene but it slowly got replaced by 40k over the decade. The main reason imo is GW's support. I cannot help but feel that GW has neglected fantasy over the past decade. Fantasy releases have always been resticted to its armybooks and even within an army there are units with extremely dated models. In comparison, 40k has lots of supprt, new releases are available in almost every month (granted most r space marine related until 5th ed came out). In addition there are lots of cool expansions such as cities of the death, spearhead, planetstrike. Last but not least 40k had imo the best sculptors doing the minis (none other than Jes Goodwin who did the dark Eldar range) and best rule writers such as Phil Kelly.

In short for nearly a decade, GW has dedicated its best resources to build up the 40k world. Under such an environment, it is not surprisingly that many players move from fantasy to 40k. While it is true that fantasy has a resurgence with 8th edition and the release of cool terrain and monster kits, it is not at the expense of 40k. What I observe in Singapore is that some more adventurous players has move into/return to fantasy but 40k will remain as their main game.

Another small observation is that 8th ed ruleset may actually discourage a certain kind of players, basically those with a deep fear or disinterest in painting large numbers of infantry. Even for veterens such as myself, I shudder at the thought of painting another hundred or so infantry models to make my army competitive.

Lyonator
14-12-2011, 07:15
Let me get a little more specific.
My fairly low model count, very light on ranged combat Wood Elf army had a hell of a time with 8th ed's changes.
and there were not enough people still playing to even make revamping my list worthwhile
sooooo, I sold them.

theshoveller
14-12-2011, 09:54
WFB was created in 1983. MK, Hordes, and the current incarnation of D&D didn't come out until the 2000's. If anything, those 3 are trying to play catchup with WFB. In addition, D&D has been cancelled by WOTC and will not have any new set releases after 2012.
Those were just recent examples, important because GW's biggest target demographic were born around the time those games came out (although, to note, Paizo have taken the pre-painted miniatures baton from WotC and will be expanding in that area greatly next year). GW had virtually no US market penetration until the 90s, I remember reading Dragon Magazine and White Dwarf side-by-side as a lad and feeling quite cheered whenever Warhammer was mentioned in the former. Contrast this with the UK, where there was a Games Workshop in every city by the early 90s and probably every significant high street by 1995. I'd hesistantly argue that the US gaming market has been saturated with games like WFB for a long time - D&D grew out of campaign rules for Chainmail, for example - in a way that the British market wasn't (aside from GW).


One could argue that Dawn of War had to compete against Starcraft and still does.
As a game, possibly. As a Trojan Horse for smuggling Games Workshop's IP into the mainstream, less so.


I think Warhammer Online argues that. Now with consoles, that's a different matter entirely.
I'm not sure WAR was a success at all. I certainly don't think it was a success on the scale of DoW.


Sorry, this I just don't buy. If that were the case, then why even bother setting up and maintaining the American HQ at all, many years ago? Why even keep it now, if what you believe is true?
Business people will tell you that companies that don't expand, contract. GW were going to have to tackle the US market eventually, so they did.


GW's own actions years ago speak loud on what they consider important concerning the continents.
Can you point to an example of what you mean? The action that springs to mind first is their restrictions on third-party sales outside the UK and EU - something that, to me, looks like a desperate clawback to keep direct sales (and GW retail outlets) alive in North America and Australasia.

Echunia
14-12-2011, 10:02
...and best rule writers such as Phil Kelly.

*snip*

Another small observation is that 8th ed ruleset may actually discourage a certain kind of players, basically those with a deep fear or disinterest in painting large numbers of infantry. Even for veterens such as myself, I shudder at the thought of painting another hundred or so infantry models to make my army competitive.

I would argue that the tables now are turned, it's 40k that has massive stupid powercreep with grey knights, Blood angels and guard. Where as the new fantasy books are fairly balanced.

I totally agree with your second point. In my area we have a group of very competitive 40k players, their biggest bugbear is the model count of fantasy. Which was fairly achievable in 7th but is extremely large in 8th.

Also I think that 8th was received as dumbed down version of fantasy by those who didn't try it. (NOT SAYING I THINK SO, JUST MAKING A POINT). People in my area played fantasy for the "skill" involved and had 40k as their fun game. So 8th caused a massive leak from fantasy here and has been almost entirely replaced by hordes and warmachine. Right now we are only 2 people who play fantasy and probably 10-15 of both warmahordes and 40k respectively.

Also I think some one earlier hit it on the head with the problem for America, their history just doesn't stretch that far back. It's a lot easier to relate to stuff that you are more connected to. Some of the main military struggles for Sweden for example happened a lot earlier than the American revolution.

Horace35
14-12-2011, 11:34
I think 40k is generally more popular because people see guns tanks etc as a more accessible option than fantasy, and the model count required is much lower.

Most of my mates who played got into Necromunda first because you had pretty much a whole gang for 20 quid or whatever it was, and not much in the way of painting to do.

Fantasy requires more of a lasting commitment to paint/buy a decent army. The only reason I dont have a Skaven army is because I couldnt bring myself to paint another million rank and file troops

AlphariusOmegon20
14-12-2011, 15:45
Those were just recent examples, important because GW's biggest target demographic were born around the time those games came out (although, to note, Paizo have taken the pre-painted miniatures baton from WotC and will be expanding in that area greatly next year). GW had virtually no US market penetration until the 90s, I remember reading Dragon Magazine and White Dwarf side-by-side as a lad and feeling quite cheered whenever Warhammer was mentioned in the former. Contrast this with the UK, where there was a Games Workshop in every city by the early 90s and probably every significant high street by 1995. I'd hesistantly argue that the US gaming market has been saturated with games like WFB for a long time - D&D grew out of campaign rules for Chainmail, for example - in a way that the British market wasn't (aside from GW).


As a game, possibly. As a Trojan Horse for smuggling Games Workshop's IP into the mainstream, less so.


I'm not sure WAR was a success at all. I certainly don't think it was a success on the scale of DoW.


Business people will tell you that companies that don't expand, contract. GW were going to have to tackle the US market eventually, so they did.


Can you point to an example of what you mean? The action that springs to mind first is their restrictions on third-party sales outside the UK and EU - something that, to me, looks like a desperate clawback to keep direct sales (and GW retail outlets) alive in North America and Australasia.

I'll give you an example from last year, the moving of the American HQ.

If GW did not consider America important, they first would have not kept the American HQ in America when they had the chance to move it out of country, and second, they would not have moved it from Glen Burnie, MD, to Memphis TN.

It was, however, a tactical move. Memphis is also the home and main Hub city for Fed Ex, solving some of their shipping issues within North America.

There is some neglect from GW in their North American sales model, with GW not doing print and tv advertizing, which is how most things are sold in America, but I chalk that up more to not understanding their target sales area, than anything. Word of Mouth may work in the UK, but the UK is also maybe a tenth of the size of the U.S. in area. Word of Mouth is more likely to work in such a "confined" space. America tends to be more visual with advertizing that works, and also is a more expansive area, thus to get your message out you almost must resort to mass ad campaigns that hit both NYC and LA with all points in between simultaneously.

Example: Newcastle Brown Ale has been sold in the UK for many years and is a well known brand in the UK. Up until 5-10years ago however, most Americans couldn't tell you what it was or what it looked like. It was only through aggressive advertizing in America that increased it's popularity and recognition in the US. Now it's fairly common and well known.

bolshie
14-12-2011, 16:05
There is some neglect from GW in their North American sales model, with GW not doing print and tv advertizing, which is how most things are sold in America, but I chalk that up more to not understanding their target sales area, than anything. Word of Mouth may work in the UK, but the UK is also maybe a tenth of the size of the U.S. in area. Word of Mouth is more likely to work in such a "confined" space. America tends to be more visual with advertizing that works, and also is a more expansive area, thus to get your message out you almost must resort to mass ad campaigns that hit both NYC and LA with all points in between simultaneously.

What a novel idea you have of the UK.

march10k
14-12-2011, 16:36
If GW did not consider America important, they first would have not kept the American HQ in America when they had the chance to move it out of country, and second, they would not have moved it from Glen Burnie, MD, to Memphis TN.

It was, however, a tactical move. Memphis is also the home and main Hub city for Fed Ex, solving some of their shipping issues within North America.


Fed Ex has nothing to do with it (My direct order stuff doesn't come by fedex...and neither does my LGS's stock...), and neither does "thinking North America is central to their business model," or whatever you're on about. Fact of the matter is, Maryland imposes crippling taxes (imagine Chicago taxes on top of Illinois taxes, not at the point of sale, but at the corporate income tax level) and regulates businesses into oblivion. Tennessee is amongst the five most business-friendly states in the union. THAT is why they moved.


To be fair I was joking, I think the clue was when I referred to Giants as being real. I intended no offence and apologize if the internet rendered my sarcasm mute.

Whoops...~embarrased~ Wait...giants aren't real? What about Paul Bunyan? I've seen him...and his blue ox!

lbecks
14-12-2011, 16:41
It's because in England Knights and Giants are a very real part of our history, if there were cowboys in fantasy the Americans would get on board too.

We don't even really like cowboys that much. What we like is big guys and big guns.

march10k
14-12-2011, 17:06
What we like is big guys and big guns.


That's what she said...:D

Aeron
14-12-2011, 17:27
Can anyone enlighten us as to whether the talk that Fantasy is more popular than 40k in Australia? I heard people mention it many times. Is it just an urban myth??

Dont be misled by the title - this isnt a US centric thread, it's about the disparity between the popularity of warhammer vs 40k in different parts of the world....

Is warhammer played in South America??

Many thanks.

Nate.

theshoveller
14-12-2011, 17:35
I'll give you an example from last year, the moving of the American HQ.

If GW did not consider America important, they first would have not kept the American HQ in America when they had the chance to move it out of country, and second, they would not have moved it from Glen Burnie, MD, to Memphis TN.
I think you've made an unnecessary leap from "less important than Britain and the EU" to "not important".


It was, however, a tactical move. Memphis is also the home and main Hub city for Fed Ex, solving some of their shipping issues within North America.
March10k's explanation seems more in-keeping with where I see GW in North America at the moment - a cost-cutting move that re-trenches the company's position. I don't for a second think they would move the North American office out of the US, the loss of face for the company would be too great.


There is some neglect from GW in their North American sales model, with GW not doing print and tv advertizing, which is how most things are sold in America, but I chalk that up more to not understanding their target sales area, than anything. Word of Mouth may work in the UK, but the UK is also maybe a tenth of the size of the U.S. in area. Word of Mouth is more likely to work in such a "confined" space. America tends to be more visual with advertizing that works, and also is a more expansive area, thus to get your message out you almost must resort to mass ad campaigns that hit both NYC and LA with all points in between simultaneously.
GW just doesn't do TV advertising, I've always wondered about it. But here in the UK, it's less about word-of-mouth marketing and more about high street presence. GW started out as a retail chain, first and foremost. They're trying to cling onto that model worldwide.

tanglethorn
14-12-2011, 17:50
GW just doesn't do TV advertising, I've always wondered about it. But here in the UK, it's less about word-of-mouth marketing and more about high street presence. GW started out as a retail chain, first and foremost. They're trying to cling onto that model worldwide.

GW started out as a retail chain?? I was under the impression they started off with not chains back in the 80's and mainly delt with sales with re-sellers and independent hobby stores.

Gradek
14-12-2011, 17:54
A couple thoughts:

1) advertising is hard to do for a game like warhammer, as it is very difficult to make the game look "cool" on a tv commercial (and still represent it fairly).

2) GW are in such a dominant market position for their niche that I am not sure they have to reduce margins by allowing alternate and discounted point of sales options (however much we may want them to)

3) The move of 8th edition to horde type armies is definitely going to increase the already large barrier to entry (in terms of cost) to whfb, however with 40k coming out with 6th edition next year, who knows if that won't get more expensive as well.

4) I would love to know what GW's overall profit margin is, as that will go a long way to telling one just how dominant/well-off they are.

loveless
14-12-2011, 18:11
What would be interesting would be a breakdown of sales origins for different markets.

Let's look at the US - what percentage of GW product sales comes from GW direct (including their stores) and what percentage from independent retailers? On both of those, what percentage is web-based and what percentage is in-store? What portion of GW sales are carried through on eBay? How does the used trade compare to the new sales? What portion of total GW sales in the States is sold below MSRP?

My guess would be that more things are purchased below MSRP than at it. American stores seem to be big on loyalty cards, coupons, and even BOGO deals.

Another interesting question would be whether or not GW takes that into consideration. Is American marketing done with the coupons and other deals in mind? Do they prefer to advertise their "sales" instead of their usual products?

I know that my Facebook ads the past couple of weeks have been from GW advertising the megaforces. I'm sure that's targeted at me due to my mentions of it and my subscriptions, but it was interesting to see it in the ad section and not in the news feed.

AlphariusOmegon20
14-12-2011, 18:21
Fed Ex has nothing to do with it (My direct order stuff doesn't come by fedex...and neither does my LGS's stock...),

Maybe not your LGS, but I know for a fact that our BUNKER's stuff comes by Fed Ex. Either that or the driver is confused and wears the wrong shirt when he shows up.



and neither does "thinking North America is central to their business model," or whatever you're on about.

Re-read my post again. I didn't say it was central to anything, I said they did consider the US important enough to build a HQ here.


Fact of the matter is, Maryland imposes crippling taxes (imagine Chicago taxes on top of Illinois taxes, not at the point of sale, but at the corporate income tax level) and regulates businesses into oblivion.

I don't have to imagine it, Chicago does that already.


Tennessee is amongst the five most business-friendly states in the union. THAT is why they moved.

If that were true, then why are not more companies moving to TN, instead of outsourcing to other countries? Because that is a patently false myth perpetuated by those who stand to gain from companies moving in.

Take it from a born and bred TN native ( I've only been in Chicago for 3 years), it simply ain't so.



I think you've made an unnecessary leap from "less important than Britain and the EU" to "not important".


March10k's explanation seems more in-keeping with where I see GW in North America at the moment - a cost-cutting move that re-trenches the company's position.

Considering he's patently wrong, I wouldn't hang my hat on his assessment.


I don't for a second think they would move the North American office out of the US, the loss of face for the company would be too great.

Thank you for proving my point.



GW just doesn't do TV advertising, I've always wondered about it. But here in the UK, it's less about word-of-mouth marketing and more about high street presence. GW started out as a retail chain, first and foremost. They're trying to cling onto that model worldwide.

And that model no longer works in the 21st century, due to technological advances and the mass presence of various electronics within our daily lives. Having a web site is no longer enough, especially when one is a publicly traded company.

Think about for a second, Super Bowls average between 80 and 90 million Americans viewers every game, that's a LOT of people exposed to those commercials shown during the game, which translates into a lot of sales for those products. Am I suggesting that they should buy SB time? No, however, normal time garners enough people viewing, and thus investigating into those products shown during commericals, that it would far exceed their current model of "walk by traffic" and could potentially put them back on top of the gaming industry. Don't believe me? Just look at World of Warcraft.

Also, running regular deals would also increase sales. They are the manufacturer, they can afford to do so, just like every other company that does so. Stopping the 45% wholesale mess to LGS's and wannabe "LGS's" would also work in their favor when paired up with an ad campaign.

GW's math is fuzzy at best and makes no sense when you look into it. GW's own admission they only make 9% profit per model means they are selling at a LOSS to LGS's. THAT is not good business sense, no matter the product or company.

Simply put, GW needs to come into the 21st or they get left behind.

VoodooJanus
14-12-2011, 18:28
That's what she said...:D

Careful now, don't want Mr. Plinkett coming around here :p.

In my area, fantasy had a resurgence with 8th, but only in the Games Workshop stores themselves. In the FLGSs, we've had a huge conversion to Privateer Press and FoW. Sure, there are games of fantasy/40k here and there, but I've run into a lot more alternative games than GW games. It possibly could do with the fact that Privateer Press is technically a local company, and has a lot of support because of it, but I'm not so sure that's all of it.

I think that what loveless said is right- fantasy doesn't have the same personal feeling to each mini that either 40k or WM/H has, simply because so many models end up being fodder. It could also be the fact that the intro to this genre of hobby is Magic, which is a natural lead in to Warmahordes.

Who knows, really, but I certainly can confirm that fantasy is viewed as 'less popular' than 40k here.

theshoveller
14-12-2011, 18:36
GW started out as a retail chain?? I was under the impression they started off with not chains back in the 80's and mainly delt with sales with re-sellers and independent hobby stores.
GW began as a mail-order company in 1975, opening its first store in 1977. They didn't start producing miniatures (or games) until 1979.

chamelion 6
14-12-2011, 19:11
My personal experience....

When I discovered WFB in the mid 80's it was pretty rare and scarce... By the time 5th edition came into the picture, WFB was, by far, the dominant game around here and games were common in the LGS. People playing 40k were rare.

When 6th edition came out there was a huge surge in WFB players and tournament fever seemed to take hold. I hated that whole atmosphere and dropped out of the picture altogether and sold my stuff.

When I came back into it a couple of years ago I found the whole gaming thing was pretty dead. There were people playing 40k, but no WFB games at all. I asked around and I was told that WFB just sort of peaked and died with 7th edition and nobody really played the game anymore.

When 8th was released there was a sudden surge of interest and suddenly you had to reserve game tables at the LGS's in advance. I'd say that excitement has leveled off some since the release but 8th seems popular. 40k is the dominant game now though, but not by much. I say on any given weekend you would see 4 or 5 40k games for ever 2 or 3 WFB games...

Snowflake
14-12-2011, 19:37
A couple thoughts:

1) advertising is hard to do for a game like warhammer, as it is very difficult to make the game look "cool" on a tv commercial (and still represent it fairly).


I don't think you understand advertising. I can't remember the last commercial I saw that actually represented a product fairly, and half of them don't say anything about the product at all except for a company name at the end. There are a million different types of effective commercials they could do for Warhammer if they tried.

popisdead
14-12-2011, 19:38
40k is easier to start. I heard that 3+ Power Armour kits are 40% of sales. I don't know if that's true but I know Power Armour kits sell a lot.

It's pretty easy to get into 40k. HQ, two troops and you're off. In fantasy you have to think and plan and the likelyhood of painting 100 goblins where 90 are only there to die is common enough.

march10k
14-12-2011, 21:58
Maybe not your LGS, but I know for a fact that our BUNKER's stuff comes by Fed Ex.



Nor did my LGSs in WI or CO...maybe because they don't get their stuff from GW directly, but through distributors. It's possible that the product moves from GW to the distributors through FEDEX...? In any case, one battle bunker does not make a solid case that GW relocated to tuck themselves in close with FEDEX...Walmart has that kind of influence over its business partners, FEDEX does not.


Re-read my post again. I didn't say it was central to anything, I said they did consider the US important enough to build a HQ here.

No, you're right, you didn't use the word "central." What you said was that they consider America so important (well, it is the world's biggest market...) that they not only build an office here, but when given the option to move it to...where, Hong Kong?...they chose instead to move it to Memphis for the purpose of being co-located with FEDEX...none of which makes any sense. If they weren't going to manage their North American sales here, the next most logical place would be at their actual headquarters in the UK. That wouldn't be moving their North American headquarters, that would be dissolving it, so I know that's not what you meant. And the bit about being co-located with FEDEX to solve their logistical issues presupposes the existence of logistical issues serious enough to require them to pack up and move their offices clear across the country...which nobody has shown. Furthermore, if they are doing a lot of business with FEDEX, that may well be a source of logistical headaches in and of itself...that is one HORRIBLY mismanaged company (series of companies actually...fedex, fedex ground, et alia, aren't even a single company!)





If that were true, then why are not more companies moving to TN, instead of outsourcing to other countries? Because that is a patently false myth perpetuated by those who stand to gain from companies moving in.

Take it from a born and bred TN native ( I've only been in Chicago for 3 years), it simply ain't so.


Seriously, you're arguing that Tennessee can't be a better place to do business than Maryland "because otherwise nobody would outsource to China and India?" Did I say that Tennessee was the best place on the planet to put a business? No, I said it was significantly better than Maryland. How stupid would it be to put their North American headquarters in Asia???

A CNBC report from 2010 listed TN as the 6th most business-friendly state, in terms of the combined cost of government regulation and litigation. What's more, both Maryland and Tennessee have flat corporate tax rates, making for easy comparison...TN is 6%, MD is 8.5%...that adds up fairly quickly, no? I'm not sure how a CNBC report and the actual tax tables stack up against "I was born there, it ain't so," but we'll let the reader decide...

theshoveller
15-12-2011, 12:13
And that model no longer works in the 21st century, due to technological advances and the mass presence of various electronics within our daily lives. Having a web site is no longer enough, especially when one is a publicly traded company.

Think about for a second, Super Bowls average between 80 and 90 million Americans viewers every game, that's a LOT of people exposed to those commercials shown during the game, which translates into a lot of sales for those products. Am I suggesting that they should buy SB time? No, however, normal time garners enough people viewing, and thus investigating into those products shown during commericals, that it would far exceed their current model of "walk by traffic" and could potentially put them back on top of the gaming industry. Don't believe me? Just look at World of Warcraft.

Also, running regular deals would also increase sales. They are the manufacturer, they can afford to do so, just like every other company that does so. Stopping the 45% wholesale mess to LGS's and wannabe "LGS's" would also work in their favor when paired up with an ad campaign.

GW's math is fuzzy at best and makes no sense when you look into it. GW's own admission they only make 9% profit per model means they are selling at a LOSS to LGS's. THAT is not good business sense, no matter the product or company.

Simply put, GW needs to come into the 21st or they get left behind.
All of that is sound business advice... but GW have, in my lifetime, gone from a collection of pokey high street shops to an international games company without heeding any of it. Perhaps it's time they changed, or perhaps they know something you don't. Perhaps there's even more than one business model that works...

AlphariusOmegon20
15-12-2011, 16:13
Nor did my LGSs in WI or CO...maybe because they don't get their stuff from GW directly, but through distributors. It's possible that the product moves from GW to the distributors through FEDEX...? In any case, one battle bunker does not make a solid case that GW relocated to tuck themselves in close with FEDEX...Walmart has that kind of influence over its business partners, FEDEX does not.



No, you're right, you didn't use the word "central." What you said was that they consider America so important (well, it is the world's biggest market...) that they not only build an office here, but when given the option to move it to...where, Hong Kong?...they chose instead to move it to Memphis for the purpose of being co-located with FEDEX...none of which makes any sense. If they weren't going to manage their North American sales here, the next most logical place would be at their actual headquarters in the UK. That wouldn't be moving their North American headquarters, that would be dissolving it, so I know that's not what you meant. And the bit about being co-located with FEDEX to solve their logistical issues presupposes the existence of logistical issues serious enough to require them to pack up and move their offices clear across the country...which nobody has shown. Furthermore, if they are doing a lot of business with FEDEX, that may well be a source of logistical headaches in and of itself...that is one HORRIBLY mismanaged company (series of companies actually...fedex, fedex ground, et alia, aren't even a single company!)




Seriously, you're arguing that Tennessee can't be a better place to do business than Maryland "because otherwise nobody would outsource to China and India?" Did I say that Tennessee was the best place on the planet to put a business? No, I said it was significantly better than Maryland. How stupid would it be to put their North American headquarters in Asia???

A CNBC report from 2010 listed TN as the 6th most business-friendly state, in terms of the combined cost of government regulation and litigation. What's more, both Maryland and Tennessee have flat corporate tax rates, making for easy comparison...TN is 6%, MD is 8.5%...that adds up fairly quickly, no? I'm not sure how a CNBC report and the actual tax tables stack up against "I was born there, it ain't so," but we'll let the reader decide...


All of that is great - except the CNBC report was flawed and incomplete. They didn't factor into their report the local business taxes levied on corporations by the Counties and Municipalities in TN, which runs anywhere between an additional 1.5 to 2.5 percent, depending on location within the state, so no, TN does NOT have a "flat tax", they have a flat STATE tax, the localities and municipalities are something totally different and must be figured into any numbers. So yeah, it seems "I was born there" stacks up quite well to some yahoo in NYC that didn't bother to research further into how the localities handle corporate taxes and add those figures in also.

The CNBC report also didn't take into account the fact that some states like TN are Right - to - Work states when figuring in Litigation ( there's fewer ligations in a right to work state, because it's harder to prove a case of labor violation in those states based on burden of proof), whereas MD is a Union state. CNBC compared Apples to Oranges on that one.

I'm also afraid you are incorrect about Fed Ex not being a single company. They are. All are based in the same complex in Memphis, compared to UPS which is almost two separate companies because one (UPS Air) is based in Louisville KY, and the other (UPS Ground) is based in Sandy Springs, GA. Perhaps you're confusing the two companies.




All of that is sound business advice... but GW have, in my lifetime, gone from a collection of pokey high street shops to an international games company without heeding any of it. Perhaps it's time they changed, or perhaps they know something you don't. Perhaps there's even more than one business model that works...

Perhaps, or perhaps GW really is the Niche product that they repeatedly claim not to be.

theshoveller
16-12-2011, 09:24
Perhaps, or perhaps GW really is the Niche product that they repeatedly claim not to be.
This is where the US/UK divide is most noticeable - something I was driving at to start with. GW in the US is undeniably a niche company. They entered a (very small) crowded market as an outsider and had to slowly build up the retail bedrock that has made the company a success. Recent changes suggest they're determined to keep working at that. In the UK, most people know that GW exists - they've walked past one every week for decades. In this country, if you tell someone you play Warhammer, they might look at you blankly but if you then add "y'know, Games Workshop", there's a flash of recognition (usually followed by, "with the little men?").

And that's the brand recognition that makes them a giant in comparison with every other company in that niche market. You could argue that WotC are on a similar level, but it's difficult to make an accurate comparison - Magic: the Gathering was definitely a runaway success, but how much of their subsequent industry dominance was a result of being a Hasbro subsidiary?

Yowzo
16-12-2011, 09:59
When 8th first came out our local woodelf player was all gloom & doom

"Oh no, my woodies are doomed!"

It happened to me the same. I routinely clobbered the wood elves of a local player (twice with O&G, one with Empire), so I offered him to trade armies for a quick 1500 game against my own orcs.

I managed a hard-worked victory barely changing his lists (more dryads and eagles, less cavalry).

He has now learnt that his army has a a few strengths he can play for, as well as the unexpected factor, as basically no one plays woodies any more.

lbecks
16-12-2011, 12:37
Perhaps, or perhaps GW really is the Niche product that they repeatedly claim not to be.

The business model they follow is labelled (by Tom Kirby) as a "niche business model." I think that's a problem in itself since they put themselves in a box and have no plans of ever breaking out of it. Plus a lot of the ground work for expansion was laid down after Kirby bought GW from Bryan Ansell where they needed to expand to recover Kirby's investment and everyone was really enthusiastic to expand worldwide. (Rick Priestley has mentioned in interviews how Ansell was just happy with the company being big enough for him to live on and didn't want to make it bigger.) Now they're at a position almost similar to Ansell's peak. It seems like Kirby is happy making whatever he's making now and ready to retire and hunkering down instead of making any huge investment push to become bigger.

theshoveller
16-12-2011, 16:56
It seems like Kirby is happy making whatever he's making now and ready to retire and hunkering down instead of making any huge investment push to become bigger.
I'd be inclined to think that worldwide recession has more to do with that...

lbecks
16-12-2011, 17:22
I'd be inclined to think that worldwide recession has more to do with that...

This goes back to the early 2000's with the internet boom. It was baffling to me when they put up the no shopping cart restriction to online retailers in the US. And that was around the time they were making great gains and the LOTR movies had come out. Imagine if Nintendo only sold Nintendo products at a Nintendo retail store, and they tried to stifle Independent retailers from selling Nintendo products. Video games would still be niche if they acted like that. But they didn't and now video games are mainstream. In some ways GW is like the arcade system, which is dead. There was also the effect of competition in video games, and it's one of the reasons if anyone wants a better GW they should pray that Privateer Press does really well.

theshoveller
16-12-2011, 18:16
This goes back to the early 2000's with the internet boom. It was baffling to me when they put up the no shopping cart restriction to online retailers in the US. And that was around the time they were making great gains and the LOTR movies had come out. Imagine if Nintendo only sold Nintendo products at a Nintendo retail store, and they tried to stifle Independent retailers from selling Nintendo products.
This is part of my point though - retail chain first, games company second. Imagine if McDonalds only sold McDonalds food at McDonalds restaurants, burgers would be such a niche food...

(I was going to use the Gap as my above example, but couldn't for the life of me remember if you could buy Gap clothes from third party retailers)

Mike3791
16-12-2011, 18:49
Personally, I like WHFB (especially 8th), but I have trouble painting (let alone buying) 200+ plastic rats or 100+ plastic undead when a square piece of cardboard does the same thing - 50%+ of those models are just glorified wound counters.


This was a bigger problem in 7th ed then it is now, and a huge reason why 8th got more people playing, but like you said.. its still a problem. GW should swallow its pride and just allow all infantry models to attack when 9th ed rolls around.

BirchbarktheAncient
16-12-2011, 18:56
Yes, well, we can all thank a certain GW bigwig here in the states who thought he was going to turn GW into McDonalds............how'd that work out for ya? If GW got rid of the brick and mortar nightmare they currently have and consolidated, they'd actually be able to turn a profit. Imagine that!

theshoveller
16-12-2011, 19:50
Yes, well, we can all thank a certain GW bigwig here in the states who thought he was going to turn GW into McDonalds............how'd that work out for ya? If GW got rid of the brick and mortar nightmare they currently have and consolidated, they'd actually be able to turn a profit. Imagine that!
In the financial year 2010/11, GW turned a pre-tax profit of 15.4 million. Lower than the previous year (16.1 million) but, y'know, global recession. There's a GW shop for every 500,000 people in the UK. If there weren't, I'd imagine those profits would be measured in the hundreds of thousands, not the millions.

lbecks
16-12-2011, 20:02
This is part of my point though - retail chain first, games company second. Imagine if McDonalds only sold McDonalds food at McDonalds restaurants, burgers would be such a niche food...

(I was going to use the Gap as my above example, but couldn't for the life of me remember if you could buy Gap clothes from third party retailers)

Models and their target audience have a lot more in common with video games than food. McDonalds itself is low cost and high turnover. It's fast and convenient and viewed as a necessity (food), and not a luxury. Every age group eats at McDonalds. McDonald's also advertises relentlessly. I can sing the big mac song right now and I don't even really like McDonald's.
Americans want everything in one place. Here in the US the majority of single brand clothing stores are in giant buildings called malls. 95% of the stores in a mall are clothing stores. So while there might be a Gap store, there's also an Abercrombie store, an old navy, higher end clothing stores, along with 3rd party retailers like footlocker, a couple department stores like Macy's or Bloomingdales all under one roof. People go to the mall as a general thing to do. And sometimes they might buy from Gap and sometimes they might buy from somewhere else. They can check sales and discounts of the stores against each other. As I said before competition is good and a mall is all those stores competing with each other.
The step beyond having separate retail locations in one big building like a mall is having multiple brands of everything under one retailer. There's a reason WalMart is the #1 retailer here. It's convenient by stocking a lot of different products (groceries, electronics, home items, toys, etc.) and it's cheap. They aim for low prices for everything.
The other place that American's like for cheap and convenient? The internet. Amazon became huge while one of our largest physical book stores, Borders, just died.
Now compare that to GW in the US.
No advertising or marketing.
Overpriced when compared to Independent Stockists on the internet.
Tried to stifle people getting GW products at discount on the internet with the no checkout and no GW photos rule.
Only sell physically through their retail stores. Don't sell through 3rd party retailers.
The US is large, they don't even have stores in some states.
Their physical stores are much more out of the way now in strip malls. GW admitted that they no longer want to put stores in large malls due to expense and mall hours. It wasn't that great a plan to begin with trying to attract clothes buying foot traffic. But now in strip malls they're not going to attract anybody driving in their car.
It's pretty much everything Americans don't like and the opposite of what video games companies did. And you expect GW to succeed in the US with that type of plan?

AlphariusOmegon20
17-12-2011, 14:52
Models and their target audience have a lot more in common with video games than food. McDonalds itself is low cost and high turnover. It's fast and convenient and viewed as a necessity (food), and not a luxury. Every age group eats at McDonalds. McDonald's also advertises relentlessly. I can sing the big mac song right now and I don't even really like McDonald's.
Americans want everything in one place. Here in the US the majority of single brand clothing stores are in giant buildings called malls. 95% of the stores in a mall are clothing stores. So while there might be a Gap store, there's also an Abercrombie store, an old navy, higher end clothing stores, along with 3rd party retailers like footlocker, a couple department stores like Macy's or Bloomingdales all under one roof. People go to the mall as a general thing to do. And sometimes they might buy from Gap and sometimes they might buy from somewhere else. They can check sales and discounts of the stores against each other. As I said before competition is good and a mall is all those stores competing with each other.
The step beyond having separate retail locations in one big building like a mall is having multiple brands of everything under one retailer. There's a reason WalMart is the #1 retailer here. It's convenient by stocking a lot of different products (groceries, electronics, home items, toys, etc.) and it's cheap. They aim for low prices for everything.
The other place that American's like for cheap and convenient? The internet. Amazon became huge while one of our largest physical book stores, Borders, just died.
Now compare that to GW in the US.
No advertising or marketing.
Overpriced when compared to Independent Stockists on the internet.
Tried to stifle people getting GW products at discount on the internet with the no checkout and no GW photos rule.
Only sell physically through their retail stores. Don't sell through 3rd party retailers.
The US is large, they don't even have stores in some states.
Their physical stores are much more out of the way now in strip malls. GW admitted that they no longer want to put stores in large malls due to expense and mall hours. It wasn't that great a plan to begin with trying to attract clothes buying foot traffic. But now in strip malls they're not going to attract anybody driving in their car.
It's pretty much everything Americans don't like and the opposite of what video games companies did. And you expect GW to succeed in the US with that type of plan?

That was my point about their advertizing.

Thank you for summing up what I was trying to get at.

soviet
17-12-2011, 16:04
McDonalds don't advertise to make people buy fast food, they advertise to make sure that the people who already buy fast food choose their specific brand. They advertise because they have several big competitors and the communal pool of fast-food buyers they're fighting over is pretty big.

GW's competition is much more limited - they are already the undisputed 800lb gorilla of their field. Moreover, wargaming and model making are niche activities that require a lot of patience, skill, and enthusiasm. Do we really imagine that the only thing stopping them breaking out into the mainstream is lack of public awareness? If one million people saw a GW TV advert, how many new GW customers would that actually create? Not many, I would guess. The people who would like this kind of thing will stumble across it in some other way.

GW's retail stores is the only mass market advertising they'll ever need.

Snowflake
17-12-2011, 16:39
McDonalds don't advertise to make people buy fast food, they advertise to make sure that the people who already buy fast food choose their specific brand. They advertise because they have several big competitors and the communal pool of fast-food buyers they're fighting over is pretty big.

GW's competition is much more limited - they are already the undisputed 800lb gorilla of their field. Moreover, wargaming and model making are niche activities that require a lot of patience, skill, and enthusiasm. Do we really imagine that the only thing stopping them breaking out into the mainstream is lack of public awareness? If one million people saw a GW TV advert, how many new GW customers would that actually create? Not many, I would guess. The people who would like this kind of thing will stumble across it in some other way.

GW's retail stores is the only mass market advertising they'll ever need.

World of Warcraft begs to differ. If Blizzard just accepted that gamers are a niche market, and was competing only for the attention of gamers, then they wouldn't be advertising at all, because there isn't a gamer on the planet that doesn't know about WoW.

No, Blizzard continues to run ads for WoW, and as a result have gotten a lot of people to play WoW that have never picked up or looked at another video game before. The same thing applies to Nintendo and it's Wii, which is also focusing on getting NON-gamers to play it. Both have been insanely successful.

There's no reason GW couldn't have this too if they did it right. For example, they could focus on video or card gamers that don't even know tabletop wargaming exists, which is a LOT. I know, I was one of them until my friend told me about Warhammer. They could focus on artistic people and go off the appeal of their model range, especially the recent releases. They could make like Blizzard and run commercials with Chuck Norris and Mr. T, focusing on, well, the male half of the population.

This could be theirs, they just have to globalize their approach, which they should have done when they globalized the company to begin with. They still seem to be based around the "high street marketing" approach that they started with. Have stores all over the place on major streets and rely on good displays to attract passersby.

Now, I'm sure that works great in the UK where they started out, or the company would have flopped. I can't speak for other countries, but that DOES NOT WORK in the US, not even in cities. This is why so many of the GW stores they've built have flopped and closed. There was a GW in Harvard Square in Boston when I was there for college. It's closed now, it just didn't get enough business, as have many other stores in equally good locations in major cities. Here's the skinny : that approach just doesn't work in the US unless you're a restaurant or a gas station, and your sign has to be 50 feet high at least in order to be seen from the highway.

It's called market research, and they clearly haven't done it. They've taken the approach that made them successful in the UK, and tried to apply it globally, ignoring the fact that in many cultures it's exactly the wrong approach to take. High street marketing may be the right approach in the UK, I don't know. Here in the US, you need advertising focus, since we watch a lot of TV. One quality superbowl commercial and you've got millions of people going "ooh what was that?" In other countries you will probably need equally different approaches. They need to stop being silly about it and get with the times.

eron12
17-12-2011, 18:25
In the financial year 2010/11, GW turned a pre-tax profit of 15.4 million. Lower than the previous year (16.1 million) but, y'know, global recession. There's a GW shop for every 500,000 people in the UK. If there weren't, I'd imagine those profits would be measured in the hundreds of thousands, not the millions.

Just as a comparison, in the US there is roughly a GW shop for every 6,000,000 people, quite a difference. The vast majority of GW gaming in the US is through independent stores. In the states the retail arm is something we all pay for but few of us use.


There's no reason GW couldn't have this too if they did it right. For example, they could focus on video or card gamers that don't even know tabletop wargaming exists, which is a LOT. I know, I was one of them until my friend told me about Warhammer.

Just to second this, I played CCGs and RPGs for years before ever hearing about Warhammer. In the States GW has almost no name recognition, even among the large parts of the "nerd" community.

Bingo the Fun Monkey
17-12-2011, 19:16
This is a query pertaining to the original post and not what the thread has evolved into (although speculating about marketing strategies is also fun): I used to be a Fantasy gamer until no one played Fantasy anymore. I still have my armies but play Warmahordes as my mainstay. For the sake of convenience, I started a 40k army because I wanted to have my "pick up game" army for business or family trips. My question is: is this unnecessary? Can I go to the UK on a trip and find a pick-up game with my Fantasy army just as easily as I can with a 40k army? Would this apply to the rest of Europe?

Snowflake
17-12-2011, 19:22
This is a query pertaining to the original post and not what the thread has evolved into (although speculating about marketing strategies is also fun): I used to be a Fantasy gamer until no one played Fantasy anymore. I still have my armies but play Warmahordes as my mainstay. For the sake of convenience, I started a 40k army because I wanted to have my "pick up game" army for business or family trips. My question is: is this unnecessary? Can I go to the UK on a trip and find a pick-up game with my Fantasy army just as easily as I can with a 40k army? Would this apply to the rest of Europe?

Yes, though as written previously, you have to not be bothered by whatever comp system you happen to be forced to use when you play. With a 40k pickup game at a new location you know exactly what rules you're playing with, with fantasy you won't know what parts of the rules/armybooks you're allowed to use until you get there.

Luigi
17-12-2011, 19:26
Yes, though as written previously, you have to not be bothered by whatever comp system you happen to be forced to use when you play. With a 40k pickup game at a new location you know exactly what rules you're playing with, with fantasy you won't know what parts of the rules/armybooks you're allowed to use until you get there.

actually though I have to disagree, from what I remember from my early days of warhammering, in Italy, we always used the BRB no more no less.
Some differences you may find in the tournaments, but this seems not to concern you, and the differences are usually little limitations to how a list can be written and not really regarding the core rules

lbecks
17-12-2011, 20:13
McDonalds don't advertise to make people buy fast food, they advertise to make sure that the people who already buy fast food choose their specific brand. They advertise because they have several big competitors and the communal pool of fast-food buyers they're fighting over is pretty big.

GW's competition is much more limited - they are already the undisputed 800lb gorilla of their field. Moreover, wargaming and model making are niche activities that require a lot of patience, skill, and enthusiasm. Do we really imagine that the only thing stopping them breaking out into the mainstream is lack of public awareness? If one million people saw a GW TV advert, how many new GW customers would that actually create? Not many, I would guess. The people who would like this kind of thing will stumble across it in some other way.

GW's retail stores is the only mass market advertising they'll ever need.

I hope you're not from the US and were born after 1990 because this is a very limited statement. There was a time when video games had a boom, disappeared and then were resurrected. Nintendo put them back on the map with the NES but it was almost similar to the situation with GW now. Foreign company entering the US market which was thought to be done with video games. They had no strong rivals and it was geared towards kids. It was niche. Who wants to sit in front of a screen all day pressing buttons? What if pressing buttons is complicated, who would want to memorize and learn all of that? Who wants to pay for a console system and then buy games for it? Video games are for children who like bright colors, who else but kids is going to want to play them?

The video game industry companies had an answer for those questions. It was everybody.

Industries aren't created just because. A lot of hard work and smart work was done to making video games into what they are today, the industry they are today. And a lot of competition. Just because GW is the big dog today doesn't mean there aren't companies out there willing to try to challenge them or grow like what PP is doing or what Mantic is doing. Sony's statement was "Nintendo and Sega can have their first party kid's games, we're going for 3rd party and teenagers or young adults." Nintendo with the Wii pushed that everyone from kids to the elderly should be playing it to try to counteract the 18-34 stranglehold the XBox has. Blizzard ran a series of commercials with people of all different ages talking about their WoW character. Competition is why video game graphics are advanced as they are, why the technology is much better than 20 years ago. As I said before in this thread if you want a better GW, pray that a company like PP does very well.

And in terms of marketing video games embraced every avenue for marketing they could get. Marketing isn't just showing a commercial on tv. This includes where you sell your product along with 3rd party review of products. Video Games were sold through 3rd party stores to get product awareness out. Almost every electronics store as well as toys stores would carry video games. So even if someone was in Toys R Us to buy legos they would see the Nintendos or the Sega systems. If you were going to buy a tv in an electronics store a Playstation by Sony was an option along with other Sony products. The demographic is already in the store, so they were given info and the option. Video games embraced 3rd party review. Walk into a bookstore pre-internet (or even now, internet changed some things) and there were dedicated video game magazines staring you in the face. EGM, Gamepro, PC Gamer, etc.. These aren't like White Dwarf. These are magazines that might say a game sucks. They might also say a game is awesome and everyone should buy it. Companies embraced a trade show like E3 to show off their products in development. And it's a closed show, invite only to media outlets. But it supports the development of 3rd party reviewers and news outlets to create a whole industry, not just one company pretending to be the whole industry.

There are a lot of companies post 1990 that flourished. Computing as a whole made huge strides in the last 20 years. I'm a fan of the UFC and they pretty much created a whole new sport that's now on network tv by making smart decisions, decisions somewhat similar to video games. I think GW could have done better than it is doing now and I think it's silly to say, "no, they made all the right moves and this is the best they're going to be."

theJ
17-12-2011, 20:17
@Advertising:

An add works great for selling a computer game, a shirt, a pair of shoes, or a hamburger.
It's FAR less likely to make someone seek out a gaming club, learn some fairly complicated rules, buy 3000(ish) SEK worth of models and paint it all before even getting to play the game.
A friend who plays can do it quite easily, however.

Rather than focus their monies on tv-adds, GW has focused on hiring "playing friends" (skilled staff), who stand a far greater chance of actually making a sale. So what if they don't reach every single american? They still reach more than enough to turn a profit - which is the aim of any company.

How many of you people would've actually got into wargaming if all you ever saw of it was a tv add? Not many, I'd wager.

All that said, GW actually has been focus on marketing as of late - they've got DoW, WH:AoR, 40k:DM and WH:MoC spreading the word to the people most likely to "get" gaming as a hobby - the computer gamers. Not all of these have been very successful, sadly (WH:AoR and WH:MoC both failed pretty badly, to the best of my knowledge), but I'm fairly sure DoW/DoW2 alone has been more than worth the investment (which I think is one of the reasons why 40K is overall more popular fantasy, btw).

EDIT: The point about second hand stores is a good one, though. Perhaps striking a deal with the book stores would be a good idea? Pop in a section with warhammer books, and add the starter kits next to them?
I'm not sure it'd be a good idea to go to toy stores, though. Toy stores are generally for really young ages - too young to really handle the hobby.

lbecks
17-12-2011, 20:33
EDIT: The point about second hand stores is a good one, though. Perhaps striking a deal with the book stores would be a good idea? Pop in a section with warhammer books, and add the starter kits next to them?
I'm not sure it'd be a good idea to go to toy stores, though. Toy stores are generally for really young ages - too young to really handle the hobby.

I think one thing GW has made very difficult for themselves currently is they completely missed the fact that we're in the internet age now. The internet is a great marketing tool but they haven't used it to full effect like other industries have.

lbecks
17-12-2011, 21:35
@Advertising:

An add works great for selling a computer game, a shirt, a pair of shoes, or a hamburger.
It's FAR less likely to make someone seek out a gaming club, learn some fairly complicated rules, buy 3000(ish) SEK worth of models and paint it all before even getting to play the game.
A friend who plays can do it quite easily, however.

Rather than focus their monies on tv-adds, GW has focused on hiring "playing friends" (skilled staff), who stand a far greater chance of actually making a sale. So what if they don't reach every single american? They still reach more than enough to turn a profit - which is the aim of any company.

How many of you people would've actually got into wargaming if all you ever saw of it was a tv add? Not many, I'd wager.

All that said, GW actually has been focus on marketing as of late - they've got DoW, WH:AoR, 40k:DM and WH:MoC spreading the word to the people most likely to "get" gaming as a hobby - the computer gamers. Not all of these have been very successful, sadly (WH:AoR and WH:MoC both failed pretty badly, to the best of my knowledge), but I'm fairly sure DoW/DoW2 alone has been more than worth the investment (which I think is one of the reasons why 40K is overall more popular fantasy, btw).

I actually got into GW because i saw pictures of minis on the internet. I think it's a mistake to say GW is only a games company and that people should only be interested in the gaming aspect or that GW should only be interested in marketing the gaming aspect. They do 3 things, model/hobby materials (minatures, paints, tools), rules writing (game systems), and managing their ip. Any of those could and should be used to their full advantage in trying to get customers.

Liber
18-12-2011, 07:02
An add works great for selling a computer game, a shirt, a pair of shoes, or a hamburger.
It's FAR less likely to make someone seek out a gaming club

This is simply incorrect.

Let me join the line of Americans telling the rest of the world that tv and internet advertising is vital for something like Warhammer to really take off here.

GW is barely keeping their head above water, and some well placed banner ads on the internet and possibly some air time would do wonders for their customer base.

A few select shots of some fantasy/40k armies on the table, with groups of people gathered around rolling dice followed by, "Learn more at
GAMES-WORKSHOP.com" is all that would be needed to get many many nerds to go "huh, well that looked pretty bad ass, but what the hell was it?" and pop onto their computer, and discover the warhammer hobby.

Echunia
18-12-2011, 08:58
I have to agree with the Americans. Sure everyone who watches a commercial won't go out and become hobbyists. The important thing is that it spreads the knowledge about it, if a parent knows what it is then they might give it to their kid and so on. That's how I got into the hobby, when I was 7 years old my parents thought it would be more creative for me to this than videogames.

MikeInfinitum
18-12-2011, 11:02
TV advertising is incredibly expensive. So the question is would adverts on TV attract sufficient extra custom to - as a bare minimum - cover the cost of the adverts?

Furthermore the adverts would probably be running in the same slots as video game adverts, and with that juxtaposition I don't think war gaming is going to come across well.

spikedog
18-12-2011, 11:47
All depends on your region, also you have to remember that internet forums and even GW stores represent a very small percentage of the people that actually play the games. Something that people on Warseer often forget.

In my area of North London where I play at a GW store as well as a private gaming club I can count how many of games of 40K have been played this year on one hand. We play 90% Fantasy with Warmachine, Hordes and other making up 9% with 40K being the 1%.

However if you go into the GW on the learner days it is the other way around, 90% 40K. Confessor_Atol mentioned 40K being more popular with the younger crowd and that is a fair statement, Warseer is the vocal minority and I am sure if you took a poll of GW's players you would find the average age of the 40K player to be lower than that of Fantasy.

lbecks
18-12-2011, 12:15
TV advertising is incredibly expensive. So the question is would adverts on TV attract sufficient extra custom to - as a bare minimum - cover the cost of the adverts?

Furthermore the adverts would probably be running in the same slots as video game adverts, and with that juxtaposition I don't think war gaming is going to come across well.

GW would have to define the demographic they want to advertise to first and how they would do it. TV commercials aren't the be all and end all of marketing. As I said before video games did a lot of hard work and smart work to get to where they are now.

soviet
18-12-2011, 12:37
The video game industry isn't big because the software companies advertise. The software companies advertise because the video game industry is big.

When you see an advert for Modern Warfare, or whatever, it's not trying to convert people into playing video games. It's trying to remind/convince people who already play video games to buy this particular one.

If the wargaming market was much bigger, and GW had any serious competitors, then it would make sense for them to advertise. But the potential-wargamers-per-capita is pretty damn low, given the amount of time and work involved, so there aren't a lot of people to convert. And of those people who already have the wargaming gene, I think the vast majority of them are already aware of GW by virtue of it being the undisputed top dog of the industry.

Liber
18-12-2011, 12:50
The video game industry isn't big because the software companies advertise. The software companies advertise because the video game industry is big.



Bullcrap. You advertise when you're small to get big, then you get big. Then you scale up your advertising to get bigger. Then you get huge. Then you start doing Modern Warfare type advertising.

I remember TV advertising for home console video games as early as like 1994.

Like the Sega Genesis commercial that convinced me i wanted a Sega Genesis.

And I wasn't 'already a gamer'. I became one, as did hundreds of thousands of other kids, and it was helped through advertising.

As far as t.v time being expensive, well it is. GW doesn't advertise at all, maybe they should start (as I've always felt) with a few well placed banner ads on video game web pages, anime streaming web pages, etc. to nail the target demographic REALLY CHEAPLY.

lbecks
18-12-2011, 13:12
The video game industry isn't big because the software companies advertise. The software companies advertise because the video game industry is big.

When you see an advert for Modern Warfare, or whatever, it's not trying to convert people into playing video games. It's trying to remind/convince people who already play video games to buy this particular one.

If the wargaming market was much bigger, and GW had any serious competitors, then it would make sense for them to advertise. But the potential-wargamers-per-capita is pretty damn low, given the amount of time and work involved, so there aren't a lot of people to convert. And of those people who already have the wargaming gene, I think the vast majority of them are already aware of GW by virtue of it being the undisputed top dog of the industry.

So you tell me how video games got big into the billion dollar industry they are now. It just always existed from the beginning of time? It wasn't through using every avenue available to get product awareness out there? It wasn't through embracing new technology to help promote their products? It wasn't through marketing and advertising? It wasn't through 3rd party sales support and embracing a 3rd party review system? Why are there more and more people playing video games every year?
Video games was not a predetermined situation. To think so is very shortsighted of history and the work that went into making it the industry it is today.

Zimfan
18-12-2011, 13:50
Interesting conversation.

As far as the advertising debate I had a couple exposures to GW when I was younger. A magazine I read that centered on CCGs ran a couple articles on 40k (all in a single issue) and I kind of knew a guy that worked at a local gw store but he never talked to me about it. I still would have looked at you funny if you mentioned either Warhammer or Games Workshop to me. Neither was part of my vocabulary.

I think with more advertisement I would have come into the game much sooner. As it is I learned about the game in a roundabout way. A while back I first ran across Dawn of War 2. A friend recommended the first DOW and from there I read several Black Library novels before learning about the tabletop game (and I went from interest in 40k to fantasy after learning my wife would actually be interested in WHFB and looking into it).

I'm not qualified to speak on what kind of advertising strategy GW should have in the US or other countries. All I can say is that either more advertisement or things like video games can only help, much more than opening GW stores (we had one at my local mall. All I knew about it was that it was a store that sold models, something I was previously interested in). I played Shadow of the Horned Rat as a kid. If I were a little older when I tried it I likely would have made the connection to the tabletop game.

Snowflake
18-12-2011, 15:04
So you tell me how video games got big into the billion dollar industry they are now. It just always existed from the beginning of time? It wasn't through using every avenue available to get product awareness out there? It wasn't through embracing new technology to help promote their products? It wasn't through marketing and advertising? It wasn't through 3rd party sales support and embracing a 3rd party review system? Why are there more and more people playing video games every year?
Video games was not a predetermined situation. To think so is very shortsighted of history and the work that went into making it the industry it is today.

Agreed. Sure, some companies rode on the coattails of the work others did, but a ton of hard work went into growing the customer base, and that work continues to be done. Just look at WoW and the Nintendo Wii, which have sucked in people who have NEVER picked up a controller before.

Contrary to the opinion of some, "let it happen" is NOT a viable business strategy. You have to use every tool available. Word of mouth and "high street marketing" may work well in the UK, and I acknowledge that. It got them started after all. But they're going for global presence, and that strategy will NOT work globally.

AlphariusOmegon20
18-12-2011, 16:59
McDonalds don't advertise to make people buy fast food, they advertise to make sure that the people who already buy fast food choose their specific brand. They advertise because they have several big competitors and the communal pool of fast-food buyers they're fighting over is pretty big.

GW's competition is much more limited - they are already the undisputed 800lb gorilla of their field. Moreover, wargaming and model making are niche activities that require a lot of patience, skill, and enthusiasm. Do we really imagine that the only thing stopping them breaking out into the mainstream is lack of public awareness? If one million people saw a GW TV advert, how many new GW customers would that actually create? Not many, I would guess. The people who would like this kind of thing will stumble across it in some other way.

GW's retail stores is the only mass market advertising they'll ever need.

Your post is somewhat flawed. If what you posted was the case, then White Castle, instead of McDonald's, would have still been the 800 gorilla in the Fast Food industry today. White Castle was started in 1921 and was the 800 lb gorilla by 1940. Then came along the new kid on the block of McDonald's.


McDonald's took White Castle's principles of service and production ideals and ran with it, turning their company into the international juggernaut we know today by the 1970's with aggressive advertizing, and product value. All it takes is one company to do the same to GW and GW will be the White Castle of the tabletop gaming industry. Everybody's heard of McDonald's, few outside the northern and midwestern US have heard of White Castle.

Remember, McDonald's was an innovator in their field just about every time they set their mind to it. First to have Value meals, first to include salads on their menus, first to include Chicken on their menu,, first to have a kid's meal, first to include a breakfast menu, etc...

GW COULD become that type of innovator if they wanted to, but it takes commitment to doing so (One could argue Finecast was a step in that direction, but Finecast is a little late to the party, other companies have been doing resin and resin style models of a while now.) If GW wants to STAY the 800 gorilla, they are going to HAVE to change their tactics and business model.

Arandmoor
19-12-2011, 05:13
This is simply incorrect.

Let me join the line of Americans telling the rest of the world that tv and internet advertising is vital for something like Warhammer to really take off here.

GW is barely keeping their head above water, and some well placed banner ads on the internet and possibly some air time would do wonders for their customer base.

A few select shots of some fantasy/40k armies on the table, with groups of people gathered around rolling dice followed by, "Learn more at
GAMES-WORKSHOP.com" is all that would be needed to get many many nerds to go "huh, well that looked pretty bad ass, but what the hell was it?" and pop onto their computer, and discover the warhammer hobby.

I'll third/fourth/whatever this.

There's a HUGE, vital difference between the US and europe that many europeans don't understand.

Geography.

Not "geography education" (you kick our asses at that...but pretty much everyone in the developed world does, and many people NOT in the developed world), but rather "the geography of the US vs the geography of Europe".

America is extremely spread out. There's a reason that mass transit fails miserably here at almost every turn, and owning your first car is pretty much the local equivalent of a "coming of age" ceremony (seriously. It is).

If you don't have a car in the US, you can't go anywhere or do anything.

In europe, that's not the case. Sure going far away could be inconvenient, but it's still possible.

In the US it's simply not possible. We've got too much open land. We don't stuff things together unless you're in a big city, and over half our population is rural.

That said, advertising for the "window shopping crowd" doesn't work in the US. Not as an initial lure. Especially now that the internet is killing our mall culture. We just don't window shop any more. Not on a regular basis, because we can't walk anywhere and mass transit just isn't economical outside of the cities (and most cities are cutting back on transit as it is).

If GW wants to sell to americans they need to advertise on TV, and they need to advertise on the internet. A massive banner-ad campaign is minimal. More video games would be good. A short-run animated show on the Cartoon network with commercials for their games that play during said show (we call it "the transformers technique") would be better. Combine the above with a "local store locator tool" using google maps on the website (basically, "put in your zip code" = "here's a bunch of stores in your area you probably didn't know existed. Go shop there" and pitch the whole hobby as a social activity for the best results.

Social activities have been king in the US lately because we've had an entire generation grow up seeing our social scene get flushed down the toilet by TV and single player videogames (I wouldn't trade it for anything...but I can't deny it). It's one of the reasons the Wii has been so popular. Same with WoW/MMOs in general.

bama
19-12-2011, 05:30
I don't know about the rest of the country but here in San Diego fantasy and 40k are about equal. I help run a fantasy league thats been running 2-3 leagues a year for the last 7 years. We have consistently with between 25 and 30 players per league. 40k has a league thats been runing a little longer with just as many people if not a little more.

Duke Ramulots
19-12-2011, 07:51
I don't know about the rest of the country but here in San Diego fantasy and 40k are about equal. I help run a fantasy league thats been running 2-3 leagues a year for the last 7 years. We have consistently with between 25 and 30 players per league. 40k has a league thats been runing a little longer with just as many people if not a little more.

Where do you run your fantasy league?

WarmbloodedLizard
19-12-2011, 09:11
If GW did TV ads, I'm 90% sure that they would totally botch it by focusing on:

A) their shops
B) 12-year-old kids only
C) 80s advertising style

AlphariusOmegon20
19-12-2011, 14:49
If GW did TV ads, I'm 90% sure that they would totally botch it by focusing on:

A) their shops
B) 12-year-old kids only
C) 80s advertising style

I wouldn't be as sure about that. GW has two ready made spokesmen for TV commercials in Will Smith and Robin Williams, two very well known actors that do play the game, unlike Mr. T and Chuck Norris, who I seriously doubt play WoW. A similar style of commercial would work for GW.

(Smith has a IG army, and Williams has an Eldar one. There are a lot more, but I just woke up and the fog of morning isn't letting me remember who they are and what armies they have. Smith and Williams are the two that I could easily remember without a cup of coffee.)

The bearded one
19-12-2011, 15:02
really? I didn't know about Will Smith :) I knew Vin Diesel once bougth some assault marines or something, IIRC.

Voss
19-12-2011, 15:25
i was under the impression that 40k vastly outsells fantasy in the US but trails it worldwide. and as someone who lives in the US, my personal experience is that yes, 40k dominates fantasy. the average 40k gaming group is triple or so the size of the average fantasy group around here (and that was before 8th ed killed the local fantasy communities). we are just now seeing a fantasy resurgence as people cross over from 40k, disillusioned by playing against nothing but space marine variants and the game being dominated by certain builds.

Since I wander around the US on a regular basis, I'd say it depends where you are. In some areas (and stores) its more popular than others.

I certainly wouldn't say 8th killed the fantasy scene. In my experience, 7th did that, and 8th brought it breathed some new life into it.


America is extremely spread out. There's a reason that mass transit fails miserably here at almost every turn, and owning your first car is pretty much the local equivalent of a "coming of age" ceremony (seriously. It is).

If you don't have a car in the US, you can't go anywhere or do anything.

In europe, that's not the case. Sure going far away could be inconvenient, but it's still possible.

In the US it's simply not possible. We've got too much open land. We don't stuff things together unless you're in a big city, and over half our population is rural


You're over stating this a great deal. Mass transit works just fine in most real cities and a lot of small towns, and most small rural communities are often small enough that people can get together if they want to, with or without a car. Most of the 'open land' is dead space between communities- there are some people out there, but they don't tend to be gamers anyway.

In some places it doesn't work, but I've seen plenty of game stores in large and small communities where people can get to the game shop (or wherever) to get some games in.

boli
19-12-2011, 15:57
Back to the advertising discussion:

I got into these games because a friend bought it.... he got into it b/c one of his friends bought it and so on... We slowly built up our own armies bought the WD magazines and branched out into other games.

Once I stopped seeing these friends as regually the minatures got packed away... and I stopped buying new ones and cancelled my WD subsription. Its a story told a thousand times but it shows how the system works.

This is a MULTIPLAYER game... and not just log on your computer every night at 7pm multiplayer but get to someones house, cart a load of models there or both of you meet up at a designated location. It can't be done by phone or webcam (easily :P).

So what you are left with is a purely word of mouth affair simply because it *has* to be... people are not going to buy vast quantities of models or even the starter sets on the mere suggestion it could be fun. They will only do so if the certainty arises that they can actually play a game or two. Only collectors will buy without knowledge of them actually going to use it regually; and even then unless you knew the history of the game (i.e. old player) there is no real need to buy the warhammer models; aside from a purely asthetic point of view.

The problem is most kids today will look at the box and go "how much?" and on the side it says "players: 2 or more" and comes with a rulebook 200 pages long; you're simply not going to get into it unless you have been introduced by a friend.

That is why most advertising fails for GW; even buying a kid a football they can play by themselves somewhat... buying them warhammer for christmas and you're left thinking... well... how does this work then?

bama
19-12-2011, 16:23
We ran the league out of Game Empire solely until a new store, At Ease Games opened. Games can be played at either store or at peoples homes.

Snowflake
19-12-2011, 17:34
You're over stating this a great deal. Mass transit works just fine in most real cities and a lot of small towns, and most small rural communities are often small enough that people can get together if they want to, with or without a car. Most of the 'open land' is dead space between communities- there are some people out there, but they don't tend to be gamers anyway.

In some places it doesn't work, but I've seen plenty of game stores in large and small communities where people can get to the game shop (or wherever) to get some games in.

Mass transit doesn't refer to city or community based transit systems like a subway or bus lines. It refers to an interconnected system that can get you anyway, such as the railways in Europe. As you point out, you CAN get around in the US without a car, if and only if you live in a big city and never want to go out of it. There's no way to get across the 'open land' as you put it without a car. The communities are disconnected.

In contrast, people can and do get anywhere they want in Europe without ever needing a car. I did it for a month, hitting Germany, Paris, the UK, Rome, Pompeii, then back to Germany using only rail, subway, and bus.

But that's neither here nor their. As mentioned earlier, even in big cities, people just don't window shop anymore, and people almost never go to malls unless they're looking for something specific. Window shopping died a long time ago here. That is not to say word of mouth has no effect, after all it's how I got in and it's how I got my brother in. But it works very slowly, and is not a viable strategy for a company with global ambitions.

I think the disconnect some people have here is that they are thinking that the ads won't get people to actually buy the stuff. This is true, but they shouldn't be geared to that. They should be geared to getting someone to check out the local store. There are tons of ads and strategies that revolve around getting people to go to a store or theater. Such a campaign would obviously have to be coupled with website improvements to add a store finder functionality, as someone mentioned. Then have an add where, yeah, Will Smith is playing his IG army or something (I wouldn't start with a commercial like that, but it's an option), and at the end toss up a message saying check it out at a store near you, and put up the website.

Course, this would also have to be combined with GW actually cooperating with independent retailers for once if they want to get the good effect. Allow them to be listed on the store finder, or the advertising will only be partially effective.

Voss
19-12-2011, 18:08
Mass transit refers to any sort of of organized transportation that moves people around. But in point of fact, there _are_ rail and bus lines in the US that travel between cities and towns. Out west, there are quite a few small lines that specialize in travel between small (and fairly poor) communities. They aren't as popular or as useful as they are in Europe, but they do exist. In any case, inter-city transport isn't really relevant to getting to a game store.

Duke Ramulots
19-12-2011, 18:18
We ran the league out of Game Empire solely until a new store, At Ease Games opened. Games can be played at either store or at peoples homes.

I had never even heard of at ease games, looks like im going to poway to check it out.

As for the advertising discussion, I only heard about this game(well 40k actually) because my friend owed my brother money and tried to pay the debt off with the old rogue trader space marines set. This was back in the early '90s so even with the models it took a few years to figure out what they were for with no internet.

WarmbloodedLizard
19-12-2011, 18:49
Course, this would also have to be combined with GW actually cooperating with independent retailers for once if they want to get the good effect. Allow them to be listed on the store finder, or the advertising will only be partially effective.

this is the heart of the problem. GWs store/business policy is just abysmal.

MikeInfinitum
19-12-2011, 23:27
@boli. You hit the nail on the head perfectly.

bama
20-12-2011, 02:21
[QUOTE=Duke Ramulots;5977968]I had never even heard of at ease games, looks like im going to poway to check it out.
[QUOTE]

It just recently opened. I know the owner and he is pretty good guy.

Hochdorf
20-12-2011, 05:16
I collect WFB only. However, I will say that on average 40k miniatures are a bit better. The best WFB are just as cool as the best 40k miniatures, but WFB seems to have a lot more lame ducks than 40k. This could be because the oldest WFB armies are (I believe) older than the oldest 40k ones and because the average WFB has (I believe) more troops types and hence more units to update/improve. Also, so many 40k armies are based off the same core space marine design, which is just a really cool looking template to work off. There's a lot less goofiness in 40k (space wolf guy riding wolf aside). I can't really think of a core plastic 40k unit box that's not really good, whereas there are a few in WFB (common goblins, zombies, wolf riders, empire knights, HE spearmen and archers, DE spearmen and xbows, TK skeletons, etc).

Anyway, I far prefer WFB as a system. I also just like fantasy stuff more than sci fi. But I can see how, if you had no preference either way, 40k's miniature range might seem more consistently cool.

That's just my impression. Feel free to disagree.

(Also I'm not from the US.)

Duke Ramulots
20-12-2011, 05:19
It just recently opened. I know the owner and he is pretty good guy.

After reading their website it would appear they used to be "Dwarf Mountain", that place was the best gamming store I had ever been to and was sad it closed all those years ago. So it reopening is really good news indeed.

AlphariusOmegon20
20-12-2011, 06:02
Mass transit refers to any sort of of organized transportation that moves people around. But in point of fact, there _are_ rail and bus lines in the US that travel between cities and towns. Out west, there are quite a few small lines that specialize in travel between small (and fairly poor) communities. They aren't as popular or as useful as they are in Europe, but they do exist. In any case, inter-city transport isn't really relevant to getting to a game store.

Actually it's quite relevant if there's no local game store in your town AND you don't have a car.

Also, I'd like to point out that Amtrak doesn't even operate much in the Southern U.S. anymore and that pretty much all rail service in that area is cargo and it's been that way for decades. If you want to get to another town in the South and you don't have a car, it's either go by Greyhound, go by plane ( if they have an airport at your destination), or you don't go.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

FirestormXL
20-12-2011, 06:22
Wait, what?!?!?!

Night Bearer
20-12-2011, 15:58
Actually they moved because they had already built a state of the art production facility in Memphis due to tax breaks, cost of labor, relative central location of Memphis, and Memphis' status as a transportation hub (which includes Fed Ex but really just shipping in general).

Presumably they wanted to cut costs and determined it was cheaper to move their Balty biz office to Memphis than move their production center to Baltimore.


Fed Ex has nothing to do with it (My direct order stuff doesn't come by fedex...and neither does my LGS's stock...), and neither does "thinking North America is central to their business model," or whatever you're on about. Fact of the matter is, Maryland imposes crippling taxes (imagine Chicago taxes on top of Illinois taxes, not at the point of sale, but at the corporate income tax level) and regulates businesses into oblivion. Tennessee is amongst the five most business-friendly states in the union. THAT is why they moved.

AlphariusOmegon20
20-12-2011, 16:25
really? I didn't know about Will Smith :) I knew Vin Diesel once bougth some assault marines or something, IIRC.

Ah, that's the other one I couldn't remember yesterday. He has a Space Marine army.

Liber
22-12-2011, 11:12
Back to the advertising discussion:

I got into these games because a friend bought it.... he got into it b/c one of his friends bought it and so on... We slowly built up our own armies bought the WD magazines and branched out into other games.

Once I stopped seeing these friends as regually the minatures got packed away... and I stopped buying new ones and cancelled my WD subsription. Its a story told a thousand times but it shows how the system works.

This is a MULTIPLAYER game... and not just log on your computer every night at 7pm multiplayer but get to someones house, cart a load of models there or both of you meet up at a designated location. It can't be done by phone or webcam (easily :P).

So what you are left with is a purely word of mouth affair simply because it *has* to be...

Ok, i've read this 3 times, and in no way do you connect these points at all. Let me paraphrase:

"I found out by word of mouth, therefore GW games can only ever spread by word of mouth." :confused: :confused: :confused:


The rest of your post is irrelevant because you assume that for some strange reason kids don't talk to each other, and that everyone lives is some weird friend-less vacuum sealed bubble.

Like little Timmy is gonna see this totally bad ass commercial with SPACE MARINES and not go talk to his friends about it either before or after after he goes and buys a bunch of minis with his parents money. Yah right, he might even bring the book to school, and hence word of mouth type spreading will increase as well.


@Voss

I feel you are playing devils advocate with this whole transportation debate, and its really not helping anything at all. Everyone knows that as a country the US (for whatever reason it does NOT matter for our purposes) relies unusually heavily on cars for transportation. Also the US is unusually large geographically, and the population is fairly spread out with lots and lots of rural communities.

I myself without a car would have absolutely no way to get to a gaming club, indie store, or games workshop (all around a 30 min drive away - easily an hour round trip). And I live in California!

Duke Ramulots
22-12-2011, 11:27
I myself without a car would have absolutely no way to get to a gaming club, indie store, or games workshop (all around a 30 min drive away - easily an hour round trip). And I live in California!

Im in the same boat, to get to san diego by car for me is 30 minutes. Without a car(for the first time in 17 years) it takes a few hours to get there if I cannot bum a ride.