Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

  1. #1
    Chapter Master Lost Egg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Wandering in the wilderness...
    Posts
    2,154

    Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    I've often heard that we are in the golden age of gaming but with the recent closing of Spartan Games etc I wonder if it isn't more of a gold-plated bubble.

    There is certainly a lot of choice about nowadays and platforms like Kickstarter have helped new mini companies onto the market but how many of them will last? How many have struggled if not failed to deliver? And, out of the ones that have delivered how many have then expanded their games or ranges? Some companies only seem to want or be able to produce new stuff through KS.

    A wider choice does not mean that the quality improves, in many ways it can mean the opposite.

    I've seen many people on forums lamenting a great game they own but they can't find anyone to play it? I suspect that there are probably a few players who still have a GW army or two mostly so they can get a game in.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Honestly gaming is getting better all the time. They look better, play better, and sometimes they combine features from several genres. But, not all games are good games. Just like 20 years ago, you had to separate the gems from the rocks. There is no golden age of gaming where almost all the games from the period are classics.

  3. #3
    Chapter Master Easy E's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    6,955

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Well, to be realistic 80% of ANY businesses fail. The survivors are the exception and not the rule, so most of these companies WILL die within the first 5 years.
    Do you like free wargames?
    http://bloodandspectacles.blogspot.com/

  4. #4
    Admin blackcherry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    WarSeer
    Posts
    3,375

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    I think this is the golden age of consumer choice. There are games out there for almost every type of gamer and crowdfinding means that if you have a good idea and manage it well, it is possible to get it to an audience a lot quicker than it used to be.

    Now if those games do well is another question. The difference between a cottage industry studio and successful 'big name' studio is now closer than ever unless you are a company like GW or PP. I have a lot of sympathy for Spartan Games. Met a few of those who ran it a few times and they seemed passionate people with their feet firmly on the ground business wise. I hope those who worked for them find further employment in the industry if they want it.

    But it goes to show that all it takes are a few things going wrong and a studio can go under. I don't think many small to mid sized companies ever properly adjusted to the return of GW to popularity and the events in the UK of the past year.
    Here is a link to the WarSeer Forum FAQ. Please read it. Want to support WarSeer? Here's how.

    Blood for the Blood God!: My Word Bearers Plog

  5. #5
    Chapter Master Lost Egg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Wandering in the wilderness...
    Posts
    2,154

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    I hadn't really considered the speed that GW did an about-turn on its skirmish games, and it's knock-on effect. It will be interesting to see how long they continue supporting them this time.

    I think it was Tor's official statement that suggested that the wider range of smaller companies and ranges haven't necessarily led to a larger pie and so more companies are fighting for each slice.

  6. #6
    Admin blackcherry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    WarSeer
    Posts
    3,375

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lost Egg View Post
    I hadn't really considered the speed that GW did an about-turn on its skirmish games, and it's knock-on effect. It will be interesting to see how long they continue supporting them this time.

    I think it was Tor's official statement that suggested that the wider range of smaller companies and ranges haven't necessarily led to a larger pie and so more companies are fighting for each slice.
    Do you have a link to that statement?
    Here is a link to the WarSeer Forum FAQ. Please read it. Want to support WarSeer? Here's how.

    Blood for the Blood God!: My Word Bearers Plog

  7. #7
    Chapter Master Lost Egg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Wandering in the wilderness...
    Posts
    2,154

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    I lifted this from their website news page...

    Tor Gaming is closing its doors.

    Statement date: Friday 25th August 2017.

    Tor Gaming was started back in 2010 with the intention to product the tabletop wargame Relics and with it, bring some originality to your gaming table. We tried to create a world that was distinctly different to what was already being presented from several fronts, and I like to think we managed in this task.

    Unfortunately, the last few years have been a difficult trading time for Tor Gaming. Running a business in a niche market is never easy but the gaming industry has become very crowded in the last few years for a number of reasons. As such, I have made the difficult decision to close Tor Gaming and sell off the Relics IP and product range.

    The reasons for Tor Gaming closing are many faceted but as I mention above the gaming market is a much more crowded than it was when I started out. The arrival of crowdfunding platforms certainly shook up the industry and made it even easier for new companies to appear and vie for the limited funds our customers have to spend in this hobby of ours. I have made use of them a number of times for Relics and whilst they are good for raising funds I have found each time I ran a project I had a nasty taste in my mouth afterwards.

    Coupled with the fact that the traditional ‘distribution model’ of selling product to end users through retailers is a difficult task in this industry as retailers have only so much shelf space and as such are less inclined try out every range that comes along makes continuing to trade in this industry as a producer is difficult.

    Over the last couple of years we have seen a steady decline in sales and as such Tor Gaming no longer has the resources to spend on the marketing and advertising required to make our voice heard over all the other voices in this industry. This has ramifications on our ability to develop and produce new products to support the Relics line. We could continue by making use of more crowdfunding projects and moving away from the more traditional ‘distribution model’ for selling but I feel that would be the wrong decision as I am not happy putting the financial risk on to the shoulders of our customers.

    It’s been a fun journey but as with all journeys, there has to be an end. For Tor Gaming, that end is here. The journey has been fun and exciting, even frustrating at times. But along the way we have met some great people in this hobby and I am proud to call many of them friends now!
    I suppose GW is still one of the only companies that actively tries to find new gamers while the rest fight over existing gamers.

  8. #8
    Chapter Master
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    London
    Posts
    1,084

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Well what makes a golden age? In terms of % popularity in the population it isn't. That was in the past. In terms of manufactured variety then yes, certainly.

  9. #9
    Scout
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Italy
    Posts
    5

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lost Egg View Post
    I lifted this from their website news page...
    I suppose GW is still one of the only companies that actively tries to find new gamers while the rest fight over existing gamers.
    I'm hardly pressed imagining GW recruiting new gamers/customers. Wargaming remains a niche market with a very limited population, and GW isn't doing anything to fish customers outside that population. There were tentatives back at the end of the 90s and start of the 00s with TV ads, heavy advertisement and such. But now? Not at all. They're fighting hard to re-attract existing gamers/customers who abandoned them, however, and they're also playing the long war with their skirmish games and boardgames. Not only the population is limited, but also its resources too: while on the short term pushing hard on skirmish and boardgames is a loss for a miniature company as GW on the long run that means they're eroding their competitors' market.

  10. #10
    Chapter Master
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    2,819

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    I don't know what GW is doing to actively grow the market. And I certainly can't think of anything GW is doing that competitors aren't doing.

    That being said, they managed to turn themselves around in a very real way last year, and they made themselves much more appealing to customers like me who (a) used to play but got burned out for various reasons, (b) have been on the fringe of the hobby for years, and (c) keep their finger on the pulse and check hobby-related news every once in a while.

    Funny enough, I thought of the time when I was more active in these forums as a "golden age" of sorts. From 2010-2016, we were spoiled for choices. I didn't particularly care for the direction 40k had taken, and admittedly Fantasy got the axe, but despite that, I thought the smaller players in the market were doing an excellent job. Now I feel like it's the opposite: Many of the games I'm fond of have vanished, and slightly larger companies like Privateer Press, Mantic, Corvus Belli are kicking around but have done nothing to impress me for 1-2 years. Meanwhile GW is doing particularly well.

    EDIT: 2017-09-27, 11:01 am GMT-7
    My perspective is as a resident of the western United States. GW may have a strong high street presence in the UK, but for those of us living outside of the UK, we pretty much see equal exposure to GW products and products from everyone else. LGS doesn't discriminate much, they just buy what they think will make them money. Which isn't exclusively GW, and in some cases, is no GW at all.
    Last edited by Scaryscarymushroom; 27-09-2017 at 18:06.
    Quote Originally Posted by Herzlos View Post
    If the Catachan Arm Monster became codex legal I'd have a full army
    This would be a Plog if I weren't so lazy. (Updated September 2, 2013)

  11. #11

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Real_Chris View Post
    Well what makes a golden age?
    Actually that is a very important observation. Before talking about a golden age one has to define what that term is supposed to mean. Because this term is actually pretty heavily connotated.

    Traditionally since antiquity the western world defines the "Golden Age" as the "good old times", i.e. the very beginning where everything was good and humans were living in accordance with the laws of gods and nature. This Golden Age is then spoiled by the actions of wicked humans which bring about deterioration and successive decline. Thus following are the Silver Age, the Bronze Age, the Heroic Age and finally the Iron Age where everyone lives in misery. The advent of Age of Sigmar should be defined as the beginning of this Iron Age, in my opinion. It is clear that today's gaming favors mass over class. Fantasy tropes are being subverted to the point of becoming unrecognizable and the art styles have become so samey it is kind of frightening. Everything has to look so smooth and heroically posed and EXTREME with overexaggerated features that it no longer appears realistic or believable at all.

    So yes, there is an overabundance of stuff out there, but what good does it do when everything looks the same and plays horribly.
    Last edited by Ultimate Life Form; 27-09-2017 at 11:14.

  12. #12
    Brother Sergeant MrPieChee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    UK - Devon
    Posts
    64

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Quote Originally Posted by BeardOfAwesome View Post
    I'm hardly pressed imagining GW recruiting new gamers/customers. Wargaming remains a niche market with a very limited population, and GW isn't doing anything to fish customers outside that population.
    Really? I would argue the opposite - what do you think the hundreds of GW shops are doing? Just having a consistent presence on the high street brings in a huge number of people and is a big advertising board. Pretty much everyone in the UK has heard of GW, and for most of those non-gamers, GW are the only tabletop company they know of. I've recently gained a group of board gamer friends, and while being active in the kind of circles that would play tabletop games, they are still only aware of GW.

    I would love to see more smaller companies stick in the industry, but the problem with the industry is that it really requires participation for the community, and that requires a large voice and lots of luck. GW did a good job in the early years getting large enough that ~15 years of doing a bad job didn't hurt them much*. I think the golden ages has ended now, since GW have started doing the right thing its going to be even harder for those smaller companies to stay put**.

    For most companies, to be successful they need a good model line, a strong balanced ruleset and a hype train. The hype train normally fails when the ruleset shows cracks. Strong rulesets often fail because the models are lacking, or the hype train doesn't carry it to the critical mass needed.

    Personally I've loving the current announcements coming from the 9th age community. A really strong well thought out ruleset which will allow companies to create great models built off of the (hopeful) success of the 9th age rules.

    * By a bad job, I mean that if it wasn't for their size and market power GW wouldn't have survived - any new company acting like GW have been would crumble in a matter of years.
    ** The right thing is still a little subjective - they haven't converted me back yet!

  13. #13
    Chapter Master Little Joe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    1,923

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Quote Originally Posted by blackcherry View Post
    I think this is the golden age of consumer choice. ...
    I love the diversity we have to choose from. I agree with this definition of "the golden age".

    Quote Originally Posted by BeardOfAwesome View Post
    I'm hardly pressed imagining GW recruiting new gamers/customers. Wargaming remains a niche market with a very limited population, and GW isn't doing anything to fish customers outside that population. ...
    Quote Originally Posted by MrPieChee View Post
    Really? I would argue the opposite - what do you think the hundreds of GW shops are doing? ...
    GW is still doing churn and burn. They try to sell a lot fast and then no longer care. That is not growing the market in my opinion. Outside the UK GW stores are rare and here they forcefully killed local dealers and left scorched earth. Now GW stores are at the fringes and you need to know that is there to find it.
    Granted, they are the only one now and many retailers do not want gaming space, so finding anything else is near impossible. I have not seen the new cheap starter line in toy stores.
    On the internet they got more active but it all happens outside the scope of my radar. Every now and then I follow a link and it is the same old sale garbage just with a pretty ribbon. I think too many people really want to like them.
    The only times I see them, is on big events and GW/Forgeworld is one of the worst promoting the hobby. No demo, just sales and very limited showing off. Going by enthusiasm of the folks at the booths they loose to the small vendors and games. Forgeworld booths are actually trying to be depressing all in black.

    So if it is shops, no, no golden age. Availability, yes, but that needs a revival and strengthening or at least a redefinition of forums such as Warseer, because exposure is low due to certain parties.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimate Life Form View Post
    Actually that is a very important observation. Before talking about a golden age one has to define what that term is supposed to mean. ...

    So yes, there is an overabundance of stuff out there, but what good does it do when everything looks the same and plays horribly.
    Quote Originally Posted by MrPieChee View Post
    Personally I've loving the current announcements coming from the 9th age community. A really strong well thought out ruleset which will allow companies to create great models built off of the (hopeful) success of the 9th age rules.
    ...
    Overall I am very optimistic about the future, I see many styles and diversity. Just miniatures, just rules, both, full universes, dice/cards/influence tokens/order tokens, several dice mechanics. In short, something that is changing is alive.
    I do agree on an unhealthy focus on what the big elephant (GW) is doing. But even that might change soon as a new big elephant arises (Asmodée/FFG).

    I think and hope we will see further diversification in the future. I also hope to see more unification projects like The 9th Age as markets become more local from my point of view (distribution networks/Brexit).

    At the very least we live in exciting times with the rise and fall of new technologies.
    Last edited by Little Joe; 27-09-2017 at 19:00.
    my general project thread

    [2018] painted: 5, added to my collection: 4

  14. #14
    Chapter Master Easy E's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    6,955

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    For the LGS I do not think it is the Golden Age. Like all brick-and-mortar retail, this has been a devastating time.
    Do you like free wargames?
    http://bloodandspectacles.blogspot.com/

  15. #15
    Admin blackcherry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    WarSeer
    Posts
    3,375

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Easy E View Post
    For the LGS I do not think it is the Golden Age. Like all brick-and-mortar retail, this has been a devastating time.
    That's very true. The bottom is dropping out of the retail market slowly and whilst GW is doing ok on that front, it may only be because of inertia and a good online presence/dominance of the UK market that they still overcome the 'drawback' of costly retail stores.

    Smaller companies still rely on Outrider style schemes and support for Indie Retailers with physical stores . Which are becoming rarer.

    I am surprised that no games company has widened their reach outside of specifically gaming focused cons or events. That seems like an untapped chance to appeal to people who may never pick up a wargamer/TTG otherwise. Some Trading Card Games have kept themselves going for years because they do just that.
    Here is a link to the WarSeer Forum FAQ. Please read it. Want to support WarSeer? Here's how.

    Blood for the Blood God!: My Word Bearers Plog

  16. #16
    Chapter Master
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    London
    Posts
    1,084

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimate Life Form View Post
    Actually that is a very important observation. Before talking about a golden age one has to define what that term is supposed to mean. Because this term is actually pretty heavily connotated.

    Traditionally since antiquity the western world defines the "Golden Age" as the "good old times", i.e. the very beginning where everything was good and humans were living in accordance with the laws of gods and nature. This Golden Age is then spoiled by the actions of wicked humans which bring about deterioration and successive decline. Thus following are the Silver Age, the Bronze Age, the Heroic Age and finally the Iron Age where everyone lives in misery. The advent of Age of Sigmar should be defined as the beginning of this Iron Age, in my opinion. It is clear that today's gaming favors mass over class. Fantasy tropes are being subverted to the point of becoming unrecognizable and the art styles have become so samey it is kind of frightening. Everything has to look so smooth and heroically posed and EXTREME with overexaggerated features that it no longer appears realistic or believable at all.

    So yes, there is an overabundance of stuff out there, but what good does it do when everything looks the same and plays horribly.
    By the sacred jockstrap of Robert E. Howard you are right!

  17. #17
    Chapter Master Little Joe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    1,923

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Easy E View Post
    For the LGS I do not think it is the Golden Age. Like all brick-and-mortar retail, this has been a devastating time.
    Retail in general is taking a hit from online trading. It might be a problem soon if getting games gets harder.

    Quote Originally Posted by blackcherry View Post
    That's very true. The bottom is dropping out of the retail market slowly and whilst GW is doing ok on that front, it may only be because of inertia and a good online presence/dominance of the UK market that they still overcome the 'drawback' of costly retail stores.

    Smaller companies still rely on Outrider style schemes and support for Indie Retailers with physical stores . Which are becoming rarer.

    I am surprised that no games company has widened their reach outside of specifically gaming focused cons or events. That seems like an untapped chance to appeal to people who may never pick up a wargamer/TTG otherwise. Some Trading Card Games have kept themselves going for years because they do just that.
    I got introduced to MTG at a rock festival, found a store and then rekindled model building with Warhammer. It worked for me.
    my general project thread

    [2018] painted: 5, added to my collection: 4

  18. #18
    Scout
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Italy
    Posts
    5

    Re: Is this really the 'Golden Age of Gaming'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimate Life Form View Post
    So yes, there is an overabundance of stuff out there, but what good does it do when everything looks the same and plays horribly.
    So true about the rules - the sheer amount of boring/uninspired wargames out there border the criminal. I'm not really convinced about the models...there are companies that produce excellent figures without turning them into caricatures: Red Box Games for fantasy comes to mind, Hasslefree for both fantasy and sci-if...Spectre Miniatures for ultra modern, but there's plenty others. There's good stuff out there, and not only from established companies: there are even new sculpts that are very good. Not-chaos-dwarves from Lost Kingdom Miniatures or the stunning historical range of V&V for example.

    Model-wise I think we're living in a pretty interesting time (even if a bit pricey, see recent Fallout pre-order bundles from Modiphius), but rule-wise...aaaarrrgh. You have to really embark in a quest to find a good ruleset this days

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •