Pimpcron is speculating again … Is he right?
Hey. I’m here, you are too. Let’s do this thang we call articling.
So What Is It That I’m Worried About?
I’ve played roughly a decade and when I started, I was playing with a literally ten-year-old codex for Necrons, and many armies had not received any new models or codices in years. Tau, Necrons, Eldar and Dark Eldar were working with codices from previous editions and some two editions behind. GW didn’t come out with many new books or models and they certainly didn’t introduce new armies or box sets. You got a starter set with two armies and you were grateful for it. Did I forget to mention that Games Workshop stores were only placed on the top of volcanos in the driving sleet, surrounded by wild dogs? My memory isn’t what it used to be, but I’m pretty positive about the wild dogs. Times were tough for the hobby.
Tough times with some homely models to boot.
But in recent years, especially the last year, GW has just exploded with new content. Card games, video games, boxed sets, Titanicus, new codices, Kill Teams, Shadow War Armageddon, Shadespire, Necromunda, and the list continues. Oh, I forgot all the new models. They added dozens of new models to Nighthaunt, dozens to Stormcast, new Ork models, new Knights, Primaris, Death Guard, Primarchs, new terrain pieces, and that list goes on. Did I mention entire new armies? Genestealer Cult, Admech, Harlequins, etc.
Good grief, I got anxious just listing off all that new responsibility for this company. I am very happy with this new, crazy productive Games Workshop. It’s nice to have new content but maybe, I don’t know, just chill a bit.
This Simply Can’t Continue
I don’t mean to be a nay-sayer, if anything I’m quite staunchly against horses. [pause in article for uncontrollable laughter] Anyway, now that that’s over- you’re still laughing? Ah, ok.
Alright, so I don’t mean to be a Negative Nancy over here, or even a Donnie Downer, but there is no way that they can keep this growth rate up. I understand that we will gladly lap up any merchandise that vaguely resembles an Aquila or a Sigmarite Hammer. But it still seems impossible, surely our pockets can’t be THAT bottomless. There has to be a natural decline of growth and stabilization in sales once any market is saturated with new product. I’m sure there is a focus on growing new customers, but for the most part I think the money coming from the new product is provided by existing customers. Mono-army players are becoming less and less common.
I obviously have no time frame that I think the party will end or anything, but it just seems to make sense. For those of you who doubt what I’m saying, here’s a logic puzzle for you. I think we can all agree that Warhammer will never include 100 complete and total armies in it, right? Like 100 different factions all complete with a full range of models. No way that will ever happen. So that means that at some point things have to stabilize, even if the stopping point is seventy factions or something crazy. So at that point lies the big question …
When Total Factions Stabilize, Then What?
Okay, pretend you’re GW or any other company for that matter. You spend years just spraying your product everywhere you can, producing it at an insane rate. Since most of your new found Gross Income is from (presumably) existing customers, and they eventually max out, out of saturation, then what? You have had to expand all of the arms of your business to accommodate this new growth over the years. More employees, more facilities, more stores, etc. Now that income from this fast expansion slows and stabilizes, what next? I’ll tell you what.
“Goodbye [insert your favorite old niche faction].”
The most logical thing is that any company will stop supporting the lowest performing product lines to make room for new exciting product lines/factions for people to buy. Hmmmm. It’s almost like deja vu, right Tomb Kings and Bretonnian players? The logical end result would be that some of the factions you have bought into will be nixed in some sort of End Times type event. If they’re in a good mood. Bad mood would mean just dropping the product lines and not giving it any fluff reason, say with Power Level rules only as Forge World has done with out of print models.
I am absolutely not wishing any harm on them because I love their games and models, but from this robot’s stand point, it seems like they are going down a slippery LotR road. Of course maybe I should give them some credit and benefit of a doubt and hope that they have thought about this already. Who knows?
~So how do you think GW will keep things humming along once the crazy expansion slows?
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