Tuesday, September 12, 2006

BattleLore: The Anti-P500 Plan

Thought Hammer : BattleLore

So now we know the economics of a promotional figure:

$70 + shipping (or tax) from Days of Wonder (or a FLGS); includes Hill Giant promotional figure

vs.

$49 + sales tax from Thought Hammer (no Hill Giant, assumes free shipping)

Really, this is like an anti-P500 type of arrangement for gamers (as in evil P500). In a P500 type of arrangement, publishers offer fans price discounts and frequently bonus features such as extra scenarios for pre-ordering directly from them prior to publication. Here, Days of Wonder is using the stick rather than the carrot by charging a higher price in order to qualify for the promotion. If it takes this type of negative marketing energy to coerce people into shopping at an FLGS, I can't help but fear for their survival.

15 Comments:

At 9:34 PM, September 12, 2006, Blogger Simon said...

The boardgaming industry (minus Hasbro) doesn't really follow basic marketing principles. Hell, it doesn't even follow basic economic principles. There's too much deep discounting regardless of demand and too many people in it for the love of the hobby which means they're willing to soak up the losses.

Not that I'm saying that's wrong or anything, but what happens in this isolated sphere is highly atypical of any other functional market out there.

Think of boardgaming as the Bizarro business model where every forecast is most assuredly wrong.

 
At 9:44 PM, September 12, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

I am so thankful for the CCGs, anime, and comics that have saved the FLGS as we know it. They would have died long ago (well, many of them did die) without them. Miniatures were always there too, but I think they're about as small a hobby as board games (if not more so). I sometimes wonder how much lead I absorbed as a kid playing D&D with lead miniatures.... Pewter is for sissies!

 
At 9:58 PM, September 12, 2006, Blogger Simon said...

According to Jon, our little DL survives solely because the owner is some rich guy who drains his money into it to keep it afloat. The FLGS will be extinct within a lifetime or two, I'm afraid. Entertainment is a bastard of a market to compete in especially when most people don't like to think much.

Ooh, look - shinies!

 
At 10:31 PM, September 12, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

It would be very interesting to see a board gaming market study, with a breakdown of sales by sex, age, income, occupation, geographic location, etc.

My theory has always been that the lousier the weather, the more popular the various forms of gaming are. There's a reason D&D was invented in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, and Avalon Hill came Baltimore, MD. Unfortunately, I think this has changed over time to the lousier the weather, the more popular WoW is!

 
At 10:38 PM, September 12, 2006, Blogger Simon said...

Exactly.

 
At 11:37 PM, September 12, 2006, Blogger Rob said...

oooh WoW.... definitively brainless.

I like to think that my diet coke and snickers help to keep it afloat. Or at least pays for a few sheets of a toilet paper roll.

 
At 11:38 PM, September 12, 2006, Blogger Jonathan W. said...

Patrick is the one that told me that Dragon's Lair was not in the black. Apparently he got this knowledge from talking to the owner when he was trying to get them to pick up his games in there store.

 
At 11:45 PM, September 12, 2006, Blogger Jonathan W. said...

Speaking of Patrick,

I followed Ben's Link to Thought Hammer, and I glanced at the top sellers and Hunting Party is ranked 13 in sales.

Congrats if you see this Patrick, and you need to come down to SA and play some games.

 
At 8:38 AM, September 13, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

I saw that too! I wouldn't mind playing HP again if anyone has a copy.

 
At 9:14 AM, September 13, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Hunting Party is up to #7 now on Thought Hammer's best seller list!

 
At 1:23 PM, September 13, 2006, Blogger Ted Kostek said...

Some day FLGS's and everything else will be gone. The matrix will take us, and we'll jack into the net via our optic nerve after our eye balls are extracted at birth.

 
At 1:56 PM, September 13, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Based on how much some people I know play World of Warcraft, I think the process has already begun...

 
At 2:03 PM, September 13, 2006, Blogger Rob said...

Question is... what is the matrix?

 
At 2:40 PM, September 13, 2006, Blogger Simon said...

It is not the spoon that bends...

 
At 6:29 PM, September 13, 2006, Blogger Brian said...

One weird thing is that GMT doesn't want to make the P500 price too low, otherwise retailers won't order the game (since they know everyone who wants it will buy it there). So the deep discounters still beat GMT's P500 price.

On the other hand, the DOW stuff is just weird. Some manufacturers sign deals with their distributors that they won't sell for less than retail. It may be the DOW is bound (de jure or de facto) to sell at retail, so as to avoid pissing off their customers. If so, the promo thing makes more sense.

 

Post a Comment

<< Home