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Wonderdog
17-06-2006, 14:10
So - I was sitting reading a back issue of white dwarf the other day, (the terminator release issue), and was having a look at the "history of GW" section. By god did they enjoy talking about Spacehulk, and how it got so many gamers into the wider hobby, and how it was so well loved, how it sold so well etc.

As usual, I let my mind wander off in a fantasy, where GW re-do and re-issue they're older gamers (MoW, SH, Gorka, WHQ). Of course, then I came to my senses and realised that as a faceless, evil corporation, GW will never do something like that... its just doesnt present a good business case in comparison to yet another marine release.

So then I thought... but why not? Given that we can (apparently) put a man on the moon, and (probably) invent corsets capable of giving Kiera Knightly a cleavage... why cant mankind put together a business case to re-issue these titles in an ongoingly profitable, business viable manner? Surely its possible!

And lo... I came up with the following.

Firstly, why "can't it be done at present?" Well, the consensus of opinion runs thus:-

1. Too Expensive - With current models and allowing for the other stuff (cardboard etc), theres about 120 quids worth of stuff in a SpaceHulk set. Plus, theres all the stories about original artwork being lost during the move to Lenton.

2. No ongoing sales potential - Once its sold, thats it... Its a game in a box, where does the ongoing return come from?

3. Lack of game designer time - with all the layoffs and "restructuring" who in the hell is gonna write this stuff?


Well... lets tackle these one at a time shall we?

1. Too Expensive - Yep, your right, the current model range is waaaay to good a deal if included in a 50 boxset (the optimum price point for this kind of thing). So how do we cut this back?

Well, GW are desperate to tell us about this new rapid prototyping, digital sculpting, and computerised mould cutting kit they've just spent a gazillion quid on... so why not use it to solve two problems?

The game isnt viable at 28mm. So dont make it so. Digitally recut your new style terminators and genestealers into 1 piece, 15-20mm. versions. Stick them all on one (or two) sprues. Bingo - you've reduced costs considerably, re-vitalised the old models, and prevented naughty 40kers from buying up Hulk as a cheap source of termies and Genestealers.

Game Design. Well, lets face it, most of it is already done. A few minor tweaks maybe, but the true beauty of these games is that they're already practically complete!

Now... to the issue of artwork. The story goes that GW lost a considerable amount of high quality ldigitised artwork on the move to lenton. Now, lets not argue about whether this is in fact true. Lets just assume that someone in Logistics IS that crap at thier job, and that they're IT department is so amateur that they didnt back up EVERYTHING to tape in advance of the move, and it did happen. Now, since we're scaling back the size of our mini's to 15-20mm... we also get to scale down the artwork! Now, there are two choices here. First, procure an unpunched copy of said games, digitally scan them, touch them up in photoshop a bit, and rescale them down. Or, Secondly, have a whole new set linedrawen, and then digitally colored (the same way all sabretooth card art is done - super fast and cheap!).

Now, lets look at what we have now. We've cut our raw materials cost right down, we can ship it all in a smaller, battalion sized box, and we've stopped naughty gamers abusing the price point to dodge expensive 40k prices. We've also worked around the design and artwork costs nicely. Hurrah.


2. No ongoing sales potential

Well, ongoing sales potential relies on two things. 1. Sell to more people. 2. Sell expansions to existing gamers.

Tackling point 1 - Given the Smaller form factor of a recut box set, its a much more attractive option to independant games stores (who have limited shelf space), and large toy chains. Distribute through these channels, and you triple exposure and potential business. Now, the other major source of new gamers are your existing GW fanbase. Your utilising existing, well loved IP with these games, and giving them an alternate, financially affordable diversion from the regular 40k grind. Great. By inclusion of a 2-4 page monthly article in WD, you can include new material to maintian interest in existing buyers, and maintain awareness of the product amongst potential future adopters playing other systems. Issue a compilation of such articles once a year as an annual, and your laughing.

Tackling point 2 -

2. Expansions. Well guys, lets face it. GW now has the widest and best source of IP and related plastics of any gaming company out there, bar none. Lets leverage this. Every 2-3 months, release a boxed expansion pack (Rhino size box) containing a new sprue of miniatures, some new board sections, and a new book with rules expansions, errata, and missions relating to the new mini's. For example, your first expansion could be based in the SH "Deathwing" expansion (revised of course). Include a sprue with a few extra stealers, a squad of terminators with 2 assault cannons (to mix in with your existing models), and maybe a marine captain. 3 months later, release a "Genestealer" expansion - with some hybrids, a couple of marine librarians, a stealer patriarch, and the 2 cyclone missile launchers.

This were it gets interesting. You can now move on and start issuing material never officially seen in the Space Hulk Game... Release an expansion pack focused on troops for every 40k race - Tau, Chaos, Tyranids, Orks etc etc. All have a good enough reasons to be scrapping in the tight confines of a spaceship! Again, each expansion comes as an all inclusive addon, with a sprue or two of recut, resized 40k models, some board sections, and a slim rules/missions booklet. Produce more marine varients based on different troops - tactical marines, scouts (any remember the "Ultra Marines" boardgame!) etc. The possibilities for quarterly expansions are vast. Whether or not you require all/some of the previous expansions to utilise later ones, or just the core game is a matter for analysis, but essentially, we've covered the fears over ongoing profitability, by issuing a cheap, easily produced quarterly update.


3. Lack of game designer time

Ah, now heres a sticky one. The reasoning for canning the Specialist games/ Fanatic Studio is that it consumed too much resource for too little return. Well, anyone who wanted to purchase Epic Armageddon from a retail store will tell you why that was... lack off logistical support. Only the very first set of stuff was splash released, and it was impossible to order if you where an indy. The game died on its feet due to lack of shelf visibility. Pity. Secondly, with a third "core" game (LOTR) to support and create new material for, designers were re-distributed. Thirdly, with the financial problems hitting the company (the reasoning for which can be discussed elsewhere) meant that a pool of good designers could not be dedicated to a seemingly unprofitable project.

Well. The beauty of a closed system like Spacehulk/Man of war/Warhammer Quest is that the design input and consideration is much, much lower than that of producing an entire 40k army or campaign. As everything is self enclosed, and works within a limited ruleset (and this is where the OOP boardgame division differs from the "wargame" stuff like Epic). A ratio of 1 designer per game could, working fulltime, doubtless produce 2-4 pages a month for White Dwarf, as well as enough material to generate a quarterly supplement for each game. WHQ is a bit different, as smaller "marine bike" sized mini box sets, with a small selection of troops and a pack of a dozen relevent event/treasure cards could be released more regularly. Given adequete artwork support (and there is still a good pool of it at GW) this would be perfectly viable.


Conclusion:-

Well, I think that makes my feelings and arguments known on the subject. I'm the first to admit that I'm a bit of a fanboy for some of the older and OOP GW stuff, and would dearly love to see it re-issued for completely selfish reasons, but at the same time, I understand that a proper business case would need to be prepared to support such a move, and I thought I'd make a start on it!

Gimme your thoughts.

#Wonderdog

orangesm
17-06-2006, 14:45
I would even argue that they do not need to change the scale to stop the 40k gamers from buying it to get out of having to buy the 40k sets. The Battle of Macragge Box Set cost 45 USD. The generic Genestealers are already there and some basic Termies probably would not take a ton of work either. To get everything in the Macragge Box Set without buying the set or equivlant would cost 65 USD to not even get all the Tyranid Infantry, the Genestealers alone are 30 USD.

So the key here becomes that you charge even at 50 GBP (~85 USD) You are not paying for all the minis in the Macragge Box Set. The box set is meant to get the players involved in the hobby and buy more.

The initial rules would include all you need to play - plus say the rules for using a particularly cool and oh expensive 40k model from each. I would say the Lictor & Terminators with Thunderhammers. Now they do not even make Space Hulk specific sets for this, they point to the range of 40k minis.

The point here is the minis already exist and just need to be repackaged like the Battle of Macragge. Even 1 expansion per year could probably sustain the game with WD articles every 2-3 months rotating with other games in the article.

The yearly expansions could include the rules for the various factions or units like you said. One may be Demons and the Inquistion (Grey Knights), no new models need to be made probably, just rules on how to use them in game.

But this is true of alot of games, even full wargames that have to be playtested - the community playtest them as well.

t-tauri
17-06-2006, 15:52
15mm is a non-starter as it kills any potential of sales being used as lead ins to 40k armies which is what all the old boxed games were about. The only scales they'll do are Epic or 40k.

The art won't have existed as digital copies. IIRC Space Hulk was done as paste ups where the original art and typeset text was stuck onto pages and then photographed prior to the printing process. So they've no art or WP files left.

Expansion could easily be done as was done for the old edition where other 40k models were given rules to encourage purchase of new 40k pieces for the game. Use of the buildings sprues to amke space stations or Anaphelion base type environments could also be done.

Old GW games are being reissued. Warrior Knights (http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/warriorknights.html) and Fury of Dracula (http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/furyofdracula.html) have been redone by Fantasy Flight Games but I don't think GW see there being a profit in boardgames. FFG can make money reisuing them but it seems as if GW have made a concious decision to limit the space occupied in stores to Warhammer, 40k and LotR.

The old boxed games were always released in alternate years to new Warhammer editions-new 40k, Box Game, new Fantasy, Box Game. Maybe when the LotR license expires then we'll see a return to the games as "spacers" but the limited number of key design staff spread very thinly over the three games systems makes me think we'll never see anything similar again.

Damien 1427
17-06-2006, 20:48
Simple.

1) Acquire PDFs made from scans of the books.
2) Post on website.
3) Write some articles in White Dwarf, giving handy model suggestions and painting guides. Also shuts veterans who whinge about the lack of Specialist Games not getting any love. :p
4) Laugh as more Orks/Terminators/Genestealers are sold with nearly no actual costs incurred at all.

t-tauri
17-06-2006, 20:53
They've taken that route with the armageddon board game by making a pdf available. Redoing Space Hulk as pdfs would certainly be a good way to keep the game going and get some free sales as people tried to populate a board. You're talking at least £50 for the basic 5 terminators and 16 stealers, more for the more complex scenarios.

It'd serve to keep their copyright active but maybe they're still hedging their bets in case they ever decide to go back to the game.

Eversor
17-06-2006, 22:40
:skull: There was a set of Kill Team rules that were specifically made for Space Hulk scenarios. Wait while I look for the article ...

Here (http://us.games-workshop.com/games/40k/gaming/spacehulk/default.htm) it is. Quite good, actually.

Chem-Dog
17-06-2006, 23:40
GW have always said that printed card cut outs are THE single most expensive component in a boxed set, this is why they've dropped them.

Now, am I the only one who thinks that a single sprue the same size as the Imperial city sets (about the size of an A4 sheet of paper) full of40x40mm floor tiles is doable? Would make it easy to supply enough to play a game.

Space Hulk would serve to bring more players into 40K so if you can supply miniatures which require nothing to develop like the Click together Genestealers (and maybe a Click together version of Terminators, Heavy Flamer heavy weapon only etc etc) all the better.
Come the advent of a Cities of Death style 40K supplement concerning tunnel fighting/boarding actions "Tunnels of Death" means the tiles are developed for this supplement and available to Space Hulk.
So we have Pre existing Clip together Stealers (not too many needed as blips can do most of the work) "New" clip together Terminators and the fabulous "Tunnels of Death" floor plans. But it doesn't end there.
Release rules (in supplements) for Assault Cannons, Cyclones, Chain Fists, Lightening Claws, Thunderhammers and Storm Shields will see people buying the appropriate boxed sets (full 40K sets mind, no more clip together stuff once you've reeled them in ;)) Release rules Genetealer Hybrids (And please god, please include a squad box as a spin off from the [hypothetical] Genestealer Cult Codex).

It's got a bit ranty here hasn't it? Sorry :eek:

Long story into short. If GW thought a little bit about what it would REALLY take to get Space Hulk into a box again (several easy to put together models, some plastic floors and doors and the time of 2 games designers to retest the rules to bring them upto date) it would be worth it.

Past an initial "Spalsh Release" they could retail it Via Mail Order and sell it exclusively through Independant stockists, many parents balk at the Idea of GW hobby for their kids because of the seemingly endless purchases priced on, to be perfectly honest, the high side the option to buy a £50 all in boxed Game might well prove to be a better option for those parents.

t-tauri
18-06-2006, 12:13
Long story into short. If GW thought a little bit about what it would REALLY take to get Space Hulk into a box again (several easy to put together models, some plastic floors and doors and the time of 2 games designers to retest the rules to bring them upto date) it would be worth it.

It wouldn't need any design time as the rules are pretty good as is. Plastic bulkheads would be fantastic but how much would they cost? More than the card floor tiles I'd expect.

Wonderdog
18-06-2006, 13:56
And would require painting too.

Chem-Dog
18-06-2006, 21:59
It wouldn't need any design time as the rules are pretty good as is. Plastic bulkheads would be fantastic but how much would they cost? More than the card floor tiles I'd expect.


Everybody I have ever spoken to from GW have said card inserts are by far and away the most consistently expensive thing to produce, the die cutters and stuff need to be re-set regularly and stuff constantly and ink is extremely expensive. The bulkheads would be a single Necromunda Bulkhead/Cityfight wall panel type afair easily included on the hypothetical floor tile sprue.

Teufelskerl
19-06-2006, 16:44
Consider this: In the Space Hulk box, there were 6 3x3 rooms (1 - one entrance, 3 - two entrance, 2 - three entrance), 4 five-tile corridors, 4 four-tile corridors, 6 three-tile corridors, 4 two-tile corridors, 8 T's, 6 corner corridors, 6 4-ways, and 5 deadends. That's 214 "tiles" of terrain.

If GW did a plastic "floor tile" sprue, it's possible to fit approximately thirty 40mm floor tiles on a sprue that was letter size/A4 sized. If they made it a fully modular floor tile (which would allow you to combine them in any sort of order, to make any sort of shape), then they would still need more than 7 sprues in a box, and that doesn't include the need for bulkhead/doors (SH had 20 doors) and bases for them. Then you need to include blips, counters, etc.

The original Space Hulk was a really good deal, which is why it still has a very high resale value even if you don't include the minis.


Frederich

precinctomega
20-06-2006, 00:05
I think Damien 1427 has the best idea. However, what games would they actually re-release?

Space Hulk? - Perhaps, but they've already done that with the Kill Team rules and 40mm tunnel pieces, as previously observed. I would love to see the rules published as a PDF, though.

Gorkamorka? - Don't make me laugh. This was a sh** game when it was designed and it's not going to have got any better since. Refer to Necromunda for gang skirmish rules. There are even published fan rules for vehicles and Ork gangs.

Man O War? - The best of the bunch, but unsupported with minis. And, let's be honest, the mini range was seriously going downhill... remember that Shark of Khorne? Sheesh.

Talisman? - A brilliant game (I played it with all the expansion sets: so cool!) but board-based, and we've already heard the problem with printed card.

Dark Future? - A fabulous IP got a crappy rules-set. How could super-fast highway combat be so dull? Please, God, let Green Ronin redo Dark Future as an RP!

Other than that, WFRPs been done, Necromunda's been done, Epic's been done... hell, even the venerable (and execrable) Space Fleet got redone at last as the fabulous BFG. We have Aeronautus Imperialis on it's way (Bommas Over Sulfur Rivva, anyone?). What more do you want? Troll Games?

R.

Eversor
20-06-2006, 01:24
@precinctomega: Warhammer Quest could do with some consolidated rules. It got way too sluggish once you gained a few levels. But still incredibly fun, for a dungeon crawl game.

Jedi152
20-06-2006, 07:25
Simple.

1) Acquire PDFs made from scans of the books.
2) Post on website.
3) Write some articles in White Dwarf, giving handy model suggestions and painting guides. Also shuts veterans who whinge about the lack of Specialist Games not getting any love. :p
4) Laugh as more Orks/Terminators/Genestealers are sold with nearly no actual costs incurred at all.
Agreed. Agreed. Agreed. 110%

Or even for GW's money-centric mind: Get pdf's. Put onto CD. Sell.

Realise your £25 terminators that cost about 50p to make start making more money than you could have imagined.

I sometimes wonder who calls the shots at the workshop. Do they have any common sense? Aren't they even greedy enough to do the above?



Man O War? - The best of the bunch, but unsupported with minis. And, let's be honest, the mini range was seriously going downhill... remember that Shark of Khorne? Sheesh.
Yeah, how the hell did that float? And how the hell did they re-load the Empire Hellhammer? :p


What more do you want? Troll Games?

R.
Yes. Complete with the tapes.

Wasn't it in a WD a few months ago that they were re-releasing Fury of Dracula?

Oh, and precinct: You missed one of the best games GW ever made. It's all about the Quest, baby.

Damien 1427
20-06-2006, 07:26
Gorkamorka? - Don't make me laugh. This was a sh** game when it was designed and it's not going to have got any better since. Refer to Necromunda for gang skirmish rules. There are even published fan rules for vehicles and Ork gangs.

Thing is Gorkamorka is a lot more amusing, at least in my limited experience with the game, comes across as far more malleable when it comes to models, and has the definate advantage of not being ruined by the abominable Necromunda Underhive "update". Necromunda first-edition, complete with 1,000 Cred Spyrers, 50-Man Scavvy Warbands and Van Saars being able to use bolters as starting weapons, is superior to Underhive in every way.

Also, I fail to see how Gorka was a bad game, ruleswise... As it was pretty much the same system as Necromunda, which is 2nd Edition 40k. The only difference was that ranged weapons were toned down due to the enviroment, with melee being made far more deadly.

Also, as a rule, fan rules are pretty lame. Space Marine gangs, anyone? :rolleyes:

precinctomega
22-06-2006, 16:27
FOL has exercised some sensible control over fan rules and the Necromunda stable is pretty good.

@ Everyone - WHQ. Yes, fair point. Still suffers from the whole "cardboard corridors" problem, but rereleasing those corridors as PDFs alongside the rules would be more than possible.

As for the money thing, one of the problems is that you can see in the 40K/WFB that players are being encouraged to build larger and larger armies (more money... although to be fair it was only following a natural trend amongst players). Whereas all of these games incline towards small numbers of models.

R.

t-tauri
22-06-2006, 20:10
As for the money thing, one of the problems is that you can see in the 40K/WFB that players are being encouraged to build larger and larger armies (more money... although to be fair it was only following a natural trend amongst players). Whereas all of these games incline towards small numbers of models.
The money for GW is by all accounts in selling models. What the suits need to realise though is that these games provide easy, cheap tasters for 40k or Fantasy. Once you've played the Specialist Games for a while the temptation is there to buy another game and it leads into one of the big army based games.

75hastings69
22-06-2006, 21:03
And would require painting too.

bringing them increased sales of sprays and paints................

This whole thing is really easy to do (well Spacehulk anyway)

1. Keep the minis 28mm scale, that way other minis from 40k range can be introduced into the game (more sales) and rules could be given in WD (as let's be honest there is plenty of space in it for something of interest!)

2. 1 box termies & 1 box Genestealers wouldn't break the bank - I mean look at the price GW are able to sell them to their staff for - they would need no exterior packaging, and would just go in the box as basic sprues.

3. A new box!!!! So the artwork has been lost............... so what!!! is there no other existing artwork from any of the 15,000 space marine releases every year, and didn't we just get loads of new Nid artwork when they were recently overhauled? I don't see how they can even convince themselves that this is even a problem, I see it more as an opportunity!!!!

4. The only real outlay would be floor tiles, but hey let's make a bit of effort GW eh? Want to get people interested in the hobby, then get of your arses and create something, rather than just relying on more SM releases.

Steve

p.s. Just though of a slight problem, if they put rules in WD it would reduce the capability of featuring the latest mini over a 12 page spread showing all the bits in the box, and 15 different paint schemes..... could be a problem..

Flashheart
23-06-2006, 09:57
With Space Hulk GW could release the rules and cardboard pieces without the miniatures. These you would have to buy from the 40K line. No need to make new miatures and it would probably make the game cheaper to make.

As for Warhammer Quest I don't think that we are ever going to see that again. There was simply too many components in the box.


WHQ. Yes, fair point. Still suffers from the whole "cardboard corridors" problem, but rereleasing those corridors as PDFs alongside the rules would be more than possible.
Actually at some point they did release the floorplans as pdf. They were hidden in the Blood Bowl section of specialist games as tiles for Dungeon Bowl.

mark_logue
25-06-2006, 15:12
Man one thing that I have to say that space hulk and advanced space crusade were the first GW games that I ever played. I had a great time playing them as a kid and years later I have gotten back into the hobby and have a huge collection of GW miniatures from most of there game systems 40K, WHFB and specialist games.

I doubt that I would be playing wargames now if those fond memories of space hulk hadn't tempted me to buy a copy of WD which ended up with me starting the first of many new armies.

They don't have to stock it in their own stores just in regular games shops where the hobby becomes accessable for kids who have no chance of ever pulling the cash together to buy an army for one of the main wargames but can convince there parents to get them a standalone game. Then people can grow up and be like, hey I can finally afford to buy an army and play those games my parents would never buy me stuff for.

I think the long term vission is really important to the hoby. I definitely feel that not being able to afford to play 40K and WHFB as a kid but having an awareness of it (through space hulk) really left a built up desire to do a lot of the armies I am doing now.

Sentinel75
27-06-2006, 12:33
The tiles and stuff can be print on demand .. have the consumer do his own printing...

hereticdave
28-06-2006, 18:24
I rather suspect they already are....

Dr Mike
17-07-2006, 16:30
I am not sure I would like to see GW redoo SH (again). They did re-release it about 10-12 years ago as I recall and it flopped - why did it flop - well they reduced it back to the basic game with their sales tactic of looking for expansions. As an avid player I would not go back to playing basic marine squad - give me captains, librarians, assault cannons, lightening claws...... but do not give me anything akin to the genestealer expansion - if you are not a Grey Knight don't expect to live long.

I myself already own a couple of hundered terminators (mostly unpainted :( ) and freaked GW HQ out when I purchased 400 40mm x 40mm bases, - no, no go back to on site mail order and beat the troll who thought the request must be wrong and only send up 20 bases - yes I wanted 20 packets of bases!!!. These have been attached to metal bases of varying sizes (1 square to 3 x 3 rooms)from Precision Wargames Supplies and can be mounted on my boards covered in Magnabase (I really must get out more). I use house rules essentially to the deathwing expansion.

In a fantasy world I would love to see GW produce a 15mm-20mm version with textured plastic tiles etc, the limiting factor with 40mm bases is scale (and you need 40mm 'tiles' with the newer models) - just think what scenarios you could create only needing say 25mm tiles.... But lets face it a re-scale re-release ain't gonna happen. Yes there is demand for such a game but its not 'profitable' and their mechanisms to make it profitable will either destroy the game concept or start so basic nobody will be interested and therfore no sales and no warrant for expansion set (using the model of basic game, expansion, further expansion that GW seem so keen on).

Is it a cool game - yes, should it be re-released - as a complete game yes, will it happen - I doubt it very much.

Warden
17-07-2006, 18:54
Im sure they said ages ago that WHQ would never be redone as the files where lost when they moved to the new studio.

Isnt Man o' War returning as a Warmaster supplement?

on a Lighter note picked up a complete set of WHQ and Heroquest for a tenner the other day from a charity shop! Which was good as my origional WHQ copy was missing a lot of floor tiles mins :(

hereticdave
20-07-2006, 18:39
Damn! Wish i could get that kind of luck!

Though i did find the of FT04 starter kits at a local store stashed in a corner they'd forgotten about so i managed to get all the hard to find mini's for a reasonable price