Quite a lot of gleeful nattering has been going on in the far corners of the internet with the news that Games Workshop’s stock price dropped 24% is a single day after disappointing sales results.
The folks at Masterminis also followed up a few days later with news of GW firing the staff and closing regional GW HQs, like GW Germany, and also starting to look at the performance of their retail outlets.
This is a pretty standard reaction for the Games Workshop management. They have been slowly paring the company down for more than a decade now and it was inevitable that they would inevitably get to the point where they had no games to cut and instead starting slicing away at the meat of the company.
Recently I expressed my surprise at the cost of some recent GW 40K Space Marine miniatures. I also, back in 2011, suggested using the GW as a universal form of cross-game currency comparison.
But after some consideration I thought that it would be fun to see just what exactly you could get for some other game systems for the same price as that single box of Space Marine Centurion figures. Please note: your results will vary. Games Workshop has some bizarre world-wide pricing that makes it difficult to compare prices from country to country. The same Centurion box that is $94 in Canada is £45 is the UK which converts directly to $77 Cnd. All this is then is what one Canadian gamer could get for the same cost as a Space Marine Centurion boxed set. (more…)
Holy heck! The new 40K Space Marine Centurion models sure are nice looking figs but $94 Cnd for three miniatures?
And while I’m complaining can we ask where the exhaust from those chest mounted missiles goes?
Its not as if I have been away from Games Workshop and its unique pricing structure for a long time but I recently stumbled across the latest 40K Dark Angel releases at Sentry Box and I was really quite taken aback by the prices. A box of the new plastic Terminators was $70 Cnd for five miniatures. To be fair that box does come with the ability to make one of three different types of Terminators but it, as well as the prices for the other new figures really surprised me.
I’ve never understood Games Workshop’s affection for the Lord of the Rings game. Clearly someone at GW thinks that the license and its accompanying figure range generates enough money to be worth the continued investment but as someone who has spent years covering the gaming industry and as a gamer I have yet to see any concrete evidence that the Lord of the Rings tabletop game and the War of the Ring mass combat game are a success.
One of the efforts at made as part of my tenure at Tabletop Gaming News was a series of monthly polls that asked gamers what they were purchasing and playing. In the months that the polls ran both Middle-Earth games would consistently poll lower than Blood Bowl. A game that GW doesn’t even stock in their own stores. In fact, both LotR and WotR wouldn’t even generate a third of the number of responses that Blood Bowl did. And while Lord of the Rings might have pockets of popularity it certainly doesn’t have the wide range of popularity that Blood Bowl,or even Epic, does. Blood Bowl has fan sites (the ones that GW didn’t threaten with legal action) and magazines, podcasts and a series of international tournaments that bring in amounts that rival some Warhammer Fantasy events. The same is not true for either of the Middle-Earth games.
So the fact that GW is returning to the LoTR game and expanding it with new models and books really has me scratching my head.