Maelstrom international goes down the gurgler?

Bad news, sort of. It depends. Certainly, not bad for me, as I have never used this company. I do know of some people in my neck of the woods exceptionally unhappy. But we will get to that presently.

Maelstrom Games announced yesterday that, due to new terms and conditions provided by Games Workshop, they can now only sell to the European Union. There is a list of the countries in the news post, but a rough estimate is that 75% of the planet earth has been locked out of purchasing from this company. Take that tabletop wargame playing earthlings!

As I said, I have never used Maelstrom, so it doesn’t affect me directly per se. But I can say that I know that this has caused at least one player I know to throw in the game, in frustration with Games Workshop. I can only assume this isn’t an isolated event.

Given that the Maelstrom news post is all I know, I don’t want to jump to hasty conclusions and attack or defend anyone. But on the face of it, this all just seems so surreal and odd. If this is Games Workshop attempting to control the market, I just can’t see how this maneuver is supposed to produce profit in any way. I would assume the idea is that if the rest of the countries can’t buy from Maelstrom, then they will just purchase locally? But will that actually happen? They are just as easily burning goodwill, resulting in no sales where before there were some.

And if it isn’t that, what is it? Is it something else to do with Games Workshop, or is it Maelstrom games? The real problem here is that Games Workshop don’t just play their cards close to their chest, they play on a different table entirely. Inside a lead box. Thousands of metres below the earths crust.

For now I am holding off on making any decisions about this, until I can comprehend what is going on. But if this is indeed Games Workshop attempting to control the market, I don’t know if I could support the company with a clear conscious. It certainly goes against the beliefs I hold about internet usage, the free market, and international trading in general.

I am keen to hear other people’s thoughts on this. Even more keen to hear some solid facts.

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About matt

Freelance Graphic Designer, thinker, and Warhammer tragic.

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