40K has dozens of factions, while other games have only a handful. But when and how should a company deal with factions who are hurting the game?
Wargames and wargamers are fickle things.
Is you ask a group of 5 gamers a hard question, chances are you’ll get 6 answers.
Factions have been on my mind of late due to the wide variety of them in the “big games” in the industry. Take a look as some of the big guys:
Yet if you ask a lot of Star Wars Armada players – you don’t hear complaints of not enough factions. But if you ask people about RuneWars – you will often hear that the 3 factions are not enough. Odd.
I feel that with licensed games, you get way more leeway based on the universe. If you make a Game of Thrones game – folks will start bitching if you leave out any of the major Houses. If you do Star Wars – apparently 2 is good enough for a lot of folks.
But back to the real topic. What should a company do when they have introduced a faction into a living ongoing product that is just not a commercial success? It can happen to any company – but with the effectively eternal lifespans of the big tabletop games, a company can really paint themselves into a corner if a faction fizzles. They made the models and rules, probably worked it into their tabletop universe, but for one reason or another it’s not selling.
It’s a really tricky problem as you risk alienating customers and lets face it – customers who collect and paint up their army are very very VERY touchy about anything bad being said about it. On the other hand ignoring such factions means a company is devoting resources to something undesirable in the market that they could reallocate into other projects. It’s a problem you can’t just ignore.
I’m genuinly curious about your opinion on how to best handle cases like these and I want to hear some examples of when you thought a tabletop company dealt with an unsuccessful faction quite well and cases where they could have tried harder.
~ The floor is yours friends.
Dad, Gamer, Publisher. All games all the time since junior-high. I should go outside more...