The Circle of Life
Drew, one of the owners of Gamers Guild, and I were talking the other day when I was in there.
Our discussion started with the price rise and the new Finecast range from Games Workshop, but quickly veered off in another direction. As all our conversations are want to do.
Eventually we arrived upon the topic of tabletop games in general, and more specifically, the renewing of a cycle we currently seem to be finding ourselves in. And this cycle? Game system capacity. Exciting, no?
All this stemmed from something that has been tugging at my mind for a while now. That is, the relationship Games Workshop and Privateer Press have found themselves in.
Games Workshops primary games consist of large-scale conflicts that really call for a sizable amount of miniatures to properly play. As has been noted elsewhere, by basically everyone, the standard capacity of a game has been steadily growing with each edition. Be it Warhammer, 40k, or even Lord of the Rings.
Privateer Press primarily focus on skirmish games that only require a small amount of miniatures to play a standard sized game. Though the are fairly well established, they are still considered an up-and-coming company, and a lot of players are taking up their systems. They also offer a lot of on-the-ground player support and interaction.
What I find fascinating is how players are currently perceiving each companies game systems. Games Workshop is regularly attacked with fervour for the size of their games and price of their products. Meanwhile, players beg Privateer Press to include facilities for them to play even larger games of their flagship systems and the ability to purchase far more models in bulk.
I am sure this is all part of a cycle, as something like twenty years ago, Games Workshop was in Privateer Press’s position and only just starting to expand their products. Since things happen so much faster now, in ten years I fully expect Privateer Press to be the new corporate monster, savaging the wailing and lamenting players with 2020 vigour.
If I can pull any kind of conclusion or point from all this, I suppose it is that we should all be mindful of where we have been. And where we are going. The more stake we have in something, especially a company, the more it hurts when they slight us. And whether it be Games Workshop, Privateer Press, or the next big thing, disappointments and poor decisions are inevitable.
This should never get in the way of breaking out the dice, opening a beer, and beating the living daylights out of your friends on the tabletop, though.