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Thread: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

  1. #1
    Big Scary Robot Wintermute's Avatar
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    Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    The number of threads criticising the pricing policy employed by Games Workshop appear to be increasing so rapidly throughout WarSeer they are becoming increasingly difficult to follow. In order to make it easier to keep track all these threads and developments in GW's pricing policy we have decided to post this thread for all comments about pricing, whether they be in praise, criticism or just general observations.

    It would be preferred if any criticism is constructive and not just comments stating how outraged you are by any price changes etc. In addition I expect, and hope, this thread will be read and monitored by GW. Therefore, as with any thread on this forum, personal attacks aimed at members of Games Workshop eg Tom Kirby and other members of the management team, will not be tolerated.

    Any, and, all off-topic posts and spam will be deleted without notice.

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  2. #2
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread


    The first comment that I would like to make is that it is too difficult to justify the price to new players and/or their parents, as that is the demographic that GW seems to seek. The prices are spiraling out of control, and even the veterans that love the game oftentimes seek to dissuade people from playing it (from what I've seen locally) in favor of games that have easier entry pricetags and more manageable rules.

    The AoBR box is one thing, with about 500 points per side (perhaps a bit more), which comes out quite nicely for a mere $75. However, this is only for two armies, and the add-ons to make those boxed armies into usable tournament forces are rising higher and higher; upwards of $150 for either. Spirits forbid that anyone show interest in any army other than the Orks or Space Marines - then you can be looking at $250-$300 USD at current prices.

    If you truly want to compete with after-market sellers and eBay, you have to realize that there is a demand for your products, but not at the prices you are willing to offer them at. Take a hint from what the guy in charge of Reaper Miniatures said: "Each time we raised the prices we noticed a corresponding drop in volume." Don't examine your profit margin, examine your per-unit sales and notice how they've slid downhill since your first bi-annual price raise.

    You're gradually pricing everyone out of the hobby, veterans and beginners alike. While you may not consider veterans to be valuable sales because they only move $300 every eighteen months versus $300 every six months for new players, you are devaluing their contribution to BRINGING those new players in and making them want to play. In informal surveys I did across a dozen gaming forums, over 60% of the time it was friends who were responsible for introducing new players to wargames, not just blind sales from people walking into the store or bleedover from licensed video games.

    I'm sure I'll think of more later, but that's about it for now.
    Last edited by iamfanboy; 11-07-2009 at 19:57.

  3. #3
    Chapter Master Creeping Dementia's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    I'm usually not one of the people that go on and on about strange GW policies, but I just noticed that a bunch of Sisters stuff got a price increase (special weapons mainly). Sisters??? Really??? It didn't really effect me as I ordered all my Sisters stuff 6 weeks ago (still waiting for it BTW), and I realize it was probably an across the board increase on certain types of blisters, but it's odd to increase the cost of what is already the most expensive army to collect.

    I love GW, love the game, love the models, but I'm just not seeing much of an incentive to buy from GW direct, when online stores can get me the product for a 20% discount, free shipping, and I get my orders 6 times faster. Seriously, I ordered some stuff from a British online store, and other stuff from GW here in the States on May 30th. I got the stuff from England 8 days later, still waiting on GW (July 11th). I'd spent hundreds of dollars to compete in 'Ard Boyz today, but thats hard to do with Sisters when I don't have any special weapons or Heavy Support. I guess I should have started preparing a month or two earlier.

    My constructive critisism is I'd advise GW to actually try to compete. Their general method of competition seems to be 'force the online/phone retailers out of business by lawsuit/regulations' rather than, 'lets offer a better option and better service to our customers'. Update your website to actually reflect what you have in stock, and quit raising the prices to new and amazing levels.

  4. #4
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    I thought I'd try to sneak in some praise before the thread gets completely negative.

    The new paint brushes and all the terrain they've cranked out lately have been very fairly priced IMO. Kudos on that.

    Now they just need to work on ... almost everything else.

  5. #5
    Commander Cane's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    Random tidbits not mentioned yet:

    1. Not sure why new models debut on the GW site with a lower price only to be increased a few days later. Could just be typo's but I believe its happened enough that this may not be the answer with the most recent example being the Valkyrie.

    2. Spear of Sicarius. It looks great in the catalog and in pictures but I'm still not digging it --- why offer such a deal if there's literally no savings to be had at all. Sends the wrong message to the customers especially in this internet savvy era. This also goes against the savings found in other deals such as battleforces and Apoc sets.

    3. Free Shipping. This was a good move by GW and hopefully more incentives will be offered for customers to use GW directly.

    4. Shutting down internet stores a few years back. It doesn't sit well with me that Neal's doesn't have a proper shopping cart system for Games Workshop stuff despite them being a major player in GW sales. As a customer it says to me that GW isn't trying to embrace the awesome power of the internet.
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  6. #6
    Chapter Master Ravenous's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Creeping Dementia View Post
    My constructive critisism is I'd advise GW to actually try to compete. Their general method of competition seems to be 'force the online/phone retailers out of business by lawsuit/regulations' rather than, 'lets offer a better option and better service to our customers'. Update your website to actually reflect what you have in stock, and quit raising the prices to new and amazing levels.
    I think GWs method has recently changed to "we dont care", look at the spear of sicarius, Im guessing they looked at it and said "why should we discount it when the only people that will buy it are online discount retailers our own employees?". They full well know what its priced at and have gone with complete lack of trying.

    Even better is when the June price rise came in and GW finally gave us the reason of "we set everything to the pound" which is complete crap for North America since all our products come from Memphis!

    This Video is meant to be a joke but its less funny when you start drawing parallels to what GW does:

    Quote Originally Posted by Cane View Post
    4. Shutting down internet stores a few years back. It doesn't sit well with me that Neal's doesn't have a proper shopping cart system for Games Workshop stuff despite them being a major player in GW sales. As a customer it says to me that GW isn't trying to embrace the awesome power of the internet.
    Thats always been a sore spot with me too, thats like GW telling indy stores have to special order everything for customers since putting their products on the wall is an IP violation.

    Last I heard Neal was clobbering GWs web sales every year, why would you go out of way to mess with people like that? The reasoning of protecting their IP doesnt seem to float since no other company in the US seems to be up in arms over other people selling thier stuff online.
    Last edited by Ravenous; 11-07-2009 at 20:46.
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  7. #7

    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    the fact that the more sensible staff have to say through strained or weary faces that the new smaller than a rhino steamtank IS worth as much as a land raider.
    Rogal Dorn threw down his copy of overheat magazine and roared "They're not banana men, they're Imperial Fists!

  8. #8
    Chapter Master Splagbot's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    I have to admit that I've thought about this a fair bit recently and in a conversation with my brother we came to a conclusion, Games Workshop's prices aren't universally too high, however they are very unbalanced and this leads to some armies individually being overpriced.

    When you have to spend £11.75 if you want Eldrad Ulthran, but you can get a far better and less outdated model like anyone of the Phoenix Lords for £9.80 you know something's wrong, when you pay more for Ghazghkull Thraka than you do for an Avatar you know somethings very wrong, in short I rather reckon their pricing structure is all over the place.
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  9. #9
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    One comment from me, why do the plastic troop boxes have such variation ?

    Take Chaos for example, £18 can get you 16 Marauders but only 12 Warriors. Fine, the warriors are bigger, but orcs are same size/even bigger, and they can get more than 12 of them into a box. And in the same size box, you can get 20 Empire Militia, with tons of weapon options, or 10 Goblin Wolf Riders, only 2 less than the Chaos Warriors but with tons of extra stuff (wolves, extra legs, extra weapons). The way they lay out their sprues/boxes seems completely random to me.

    Also, £8 for the average metal character on foot seems more than a little steep. £5-£6 is a better idea, and even then it's fairly high considering most cost little more than a normal metal trooper to produce.
    Last edited by ~Aura~; 12-07-2009 at 09:10.

  10. #10

    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by ~Aura~ View Post
    One comment from me, why do the plastic troop boxes have such variation ?
    Because they were developed over a period of many years. Try laying your examples out in order of the date moulded into the sprue and there's a clear trend as their technology and know-how improves.

  11. #11
    Librarian stompy's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    In fairness to GW, although prices are increasing, the price of buying an army doesn't seem to be. Take the new Warriors of Chaos book- while the prices of some units have increased quite steeply in price (chariots and ogres for example), the overall price of the army is decreased by things like knights and hounds rapidly dropping in price.

    Also, I totally agree with Schmapdi, the new terrain in particular is very reasonable- a cities of death building has a LOT of plastic in it for £15.

    However, I suppose the other side of this is that it proves how cheaply GW can make plastics for if they want to. Compare a £15 cities of death building to two £8 night goblin fanatic boxes, and there's a pretty huge difference. I know it's not an entirely fair comparison, since the buildings will sell in higher volumes, are perhaps cheaper to cast since they are mostly flat (I think... I don't really know how plastic moulds are priced), and that prices are partially based on points costs. Still though, it does leave a bitter taste.

    The other thing that irks me about GWs pricing is that when constructing an army, I find i can't take certain units from the codex, as I simply cannot afford them. The new empire plastics are probably the best example of this, though I won't go on about them, because we've all read that rant before. Thus, some cool units and really nice models either go unused because people aren't prepared to fork out for them, or are replaced with conversions from cheaper units, that usually don't look anywhere near as cool as the original unit, and can be pretty confusing.

    Final point- I rarely buy things at my local GW any more. While I wouldn't say I've been priced out of the hobby, it has got to a point where i have to shop competitively. Most my purchases come from ebay, or online stores. While I'd like to support my local store, I can purchase the same things online with a 20% discount, which produces a considerable saving when considering an entire army.

  12. #12

    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    The main complaint I have with prices is the repackaging of many models. 10 guardsmen for the price they charge is insane. Many other examples I won't even bother to post.

    GW online store JUST now managed to cut most of the shipping. They really need to do deals once in awhile. They could even do something like spend 100 dollars and get 5 bucks free, which you could save up for a month or two (eventually they would expire I suppose).

    Lots of things that you can ONLY get from direct order really pinch the small stores that imo are the main cause of GW games being so successful in the first place.

    Overall, prices are WAY to high across the board. They spend to much attention on to many products, half of which shouldn't even be bothered with until things like updated Codexes (for all armies) are finished or at least in the works.

    New terrain is pretty decent deal. That said though, scratch built terrain is incredibly easy to make and usually done for less than half the cost.

    Most people who play the 40k/Fantasy games are a little tired of the gradual price climb at this point I think, I really don't understand the reasoning for it other than trying to milk it for all its worth. Which I suppose is business decision, albeit a slightly lame one.
    Last edited by Kriegfreak; 12-07-2009 at 10:27.

  13. #13
    Chapter Master Vermin-thing's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    I feel that in general GW needs stable a pricing system for it's armies.

    Here's a mock up:

    Offer a members card which grants 10% off purchases over $100, 25% off $150 plus, and get 25 Warhammer/LORD/40k ''points" for every $50 dollars spent. 1 "point" = $2.50 in store only savings.
    (in Canadian) Also members get 4 months worth of white dwarf so long as they spend $25 + per month.

    We need a reason to shop at GW stores! I bought an (would have been) unfordable HE army off of Wayland, because of the outrages prices for metal sets of 5. Com'on you can do better than $29.75-35 for 5!

    Metal characters (including special characters) on foot: $12-16 depending on the size
    Metal characters with banner (including special characters): $18-20 depending on the size
    Metal characters mounted (including special characters): $16-18 (plastic horse), $20-25 (metal horse)
    Metal 3 pack/command blisters: $14-18
    Metal 5 pack: $20, $22 (with command)
    Metal monster: $35 (vargulf), $45 (dragon, hydra) +$10 for character.
    Metal chariot: $35, $28 (plastic horse)

    Plastic character set of 2: $25-30 depending on sprue size.
    Plastic set of 10: $20
    Plastic set of 20/16: $40/35 (GW should just repackage all these boxes to tens [besides skaven/nids/guard])
    Plastic chariot: $30
    Plastic calvary set of 5/10: $22/40 (notice how I made the box of ten less than two boxes of 5, this is a common pricing strategy that GW needs to pick up on)
    Plastic monsters: $35
    Odd plastic kits: $45 (STank, Steg, Warshrine, Waralter)
    All derect only/old models should be order ins within 5 business days.
    Last edited by Vermin-thing; 12-07-2009 at 11:53.
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  14. #14
    Chapter Master Putty's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    TBH, GW on a whole needs to re-evaluate how they want to price their stock.

    Much of their line consist of old and new stuff. Some of their new products (Steam Tank, Greatswords) are priced what players feel "over the top". Other recent releases like the Valkyrie, Realm of Battle Gameboard had their prices changed (to more expensive) closer to their release, creating much hiatus about the motives of such a move.

    Some of their popular box sets like the Tyranid Assault Brood box set are discontinued and the repack of the IG Battleforces from a Russ to a Sentinel angered would be players of the new IG codex.

    I would dare say that many current players are stumped by why GW is taking away the value for money deals that they had in the past and seem to be pushing new releases with seemingly inflated price tags.

    Supporters of this hobby want value for money. They want cheaper models so they can buy more. Some armies (like hoard types) are priced out of many would be players' budget.

    Many followers of GW are perplexed why they repacked the current IG Infantry squads and Battleforces the way they are and priced that way that prevents would be players to exploit the strength of the new codex (ie. infantry hoards).

    GW must reconsider their pricing strategy if they want to profit from their much improved (and still improving) products. They should give people a reason to buy more with little consideration instead of forcing them to make the decision.

    A customer who needs to do less or no number crunching when buying a product is one who will not hesitate to buy more.

  15. #15
    Chapter Master ashc's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    Wow, I get to be the first one to say it in this thread; Goldswords

    That's all I really have to say on what could potentially be a terrible future trend for GW.
    Yeah, we flew our space church across 500 light years to get to this planet taken over by the orks. Now we're going to drop from orbit in buckets and run out and shoot pistols and hit people in the head with chainsaws. Ultramarines!

  16. #16
    Commander Nym's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    I'm not really concerned with GW prices overall. But I'm much more concerned with pricing disparities between currencies.

    Ork Battlewagon = $57.75 or 34.25£ or 50€

    Problem here : at the current exchange rate, the Battlewagon should cost around 40€. It's been like that for YEARS, and it affects every single model. The Vampire Counts Blood Knights cost 48.95£, which is roughly 57€. Yet, they're priced 80€ (!!!) on the french website. That's crazy.

    As a result, I (and most of the people I know) order my models on British websites. It ends up costing nearly half as much as what I would pay at my local shop ! On GW own website, we get a 20-30% reduction just by switching currencies...

    This is killing local businesses, and tbh, it also kills my faith in GW because I really get the impression that they consider us €uro users as cash cows.
    Last edited by Nym; 12-07-2009 at 23:53.

  17. #17
    Chapter Master isaac's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    Agreed, what little I purchase, is solely from local shops (for brushes, paints, hobby tools at local model and craft stores, to support the friendly local stores) or for models, purely from the UK at this point. I don't like shopping at the local GW store and now that the FLGS is gone, I have no other place to buy locally.

    Plus buying less and doing a lot of conversions is lighter on my wallet and gives me a real sense of pride at even the unpainted models that are finished.
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  18. #18

    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    OK, im not trying to defend GW here, because a fair bit of thier business model is complete balls. But most of the complaints from what I see on this thread are because people dont understand economics and the way injection moulding works.

    Q - Why are plastics still expensive and not uber cheap like we expect them to be?

    A - Because the moulds for these plastics are incredibly expensive to produce. As a company GW need to ensure that it not only generates enough money to cover the costs of these new moulds for all the figures they are bringing out, but the rent on all the shops, staff wages, tax etc....

    You must also consider that when they are making plastics for characters, when the mould costs the same, how many wizards are they going to sell compared to a unit of knights? So its not about the individual box but about the long term game plan.

    They do however need to start grouping thier boxes and price bands more coherently as it is a bit all over the place.

    I accept that the new plastics are not going to be cheap, but when you see the quality of them I find it hard to moan. As it was said earlier, the price of an army as a whole has not increased, they have just spread the cost differently.

    Alos, has anyone been paying attention to the huge recession that the UK is in? Anyone think this may have a little bearing on thier actions too.....?

  19. #19
    Veteran Sergeant mightymouse's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    lol dude. Youve been buying discounted models ever since Ive known you!! Lets face it. GW models are expensive and the HQ employees of the preistly tower - fanatical. You cant polish a **** mate and a **** is exactly what GW pricing is currently.

    See you in 2 years

  20. #20
    Chapter Master zedeyejoe's Avatar
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    Re: Games Workshop Pricing Feedback Thread

    Walmat sell a lot of iteams making a small profit on each where other stores made a larger profit on one iteam they didn't sell as many iteams.
    I will repeat, selling model soldiers is not like selling groceries (or other household items).

    Putting it simply a hobby appeals only to a limited number of people. I think someone calculated that only 3 in 10,000 of the population are wargamers (playing with miniatures). And reducing prices just is not going to make those people play wargames any more than a reduction in ticket prices would make me want to watch ballet.

    And regardless of interest, consider this. Supermarkets buy their goods in from outside suppliers. They crack down on the prices of suppliers as some of you might be aware.

    I often think that the people who advocate lower prices for GW models think 'well thats what I would like them to do, cos that would be good for me' and then go out and think up reasons to justify that view.

    You should not overindulge your customer. Instead, make sure that you extract fair value for what you deliver. Aggressive and acquiescent actions hinder your own efforts to pursue higher profits. [C]ustomer giveaways, value attacks, and aggressive price cuts represent a huge transfer of wealth from you to your customers.
    Last edited by zedeyejoe; 14-07-2009 at 09:42.

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