Thursday, June 24, 2010
Change: What GW Can Do to Improve
Change, something that Presidents Clinton and Obama have preached about. Change is also what you have in your pocket after purchasing something with cash. This post will be about both types of change and how one type of change will effect the other type of change for GW.
The first item on the docket for change is fluff. While GW's fluff is nice and all, it has become somewhat stale the past few years. I understand that the 41st millennium is grimdark and all that but there has to be some type of major event going on to shake things up just a bit. GW could introduce something as minor as a Global type campaign (ie Medusa V or Eye of Terror) or something major, lets say a schism between the various Space Marine chapters or a rogue Inquisitor losing it and virus bombing a major planet (let's say Ultramar or Cadia). How about an Eldar craftworld suddenly showing up in the Sol System or a Tyranid hive fleet doing the same? How about some fluff written by some Black Library authors? I honestly feel that introducing a story arc along these lines of this will greatly increase people's interest in the game. It will make things more exciting and give GW a chance to trickle in new campaign books and units that everyone will be interested in. Also, if these story arcs work their way into 6th Edition, people will be extremely excited, and a lot of old retired players might come running back.
The second item on the docket for change is their schedule for releasing new models. Currently you have to wait for the codex to come out, then wait half a year to get units that are in the book that do not yet have a model (The Stormraven is a prime example). Some of you might say "well it gives us a change to kit bash and make our own". I understand this and I 100% support people to make their own, but what if the size or base you are using are totally off? I think GW should either state in the codex what type of base all of their models are on or take a page for Warmachine and include the rules in the box when the model comes out. By this I mean only have rules for units you have models for in the codex and introduce new units later on with the rules in the box. Granted if GW did this, no one would currently know anything about the Stormraven but consider this. The BA codex is out for 6 months, sales for the codex and troops have slowed down, when all of a sudden BOOM, here comes the Stormraven with the rules inside the box. People would flip out and interest in BAs would shoot right back up. If GW were to do this, they could also give old armies a little band-aid in order to keep them fresh and competitive until their new codex comes out. What if the Necrons got another troop choice that didn't fold in assault or what if Demon Hunters got access to a cheap transport? A small simple addition of 1 unit could make a huge difference to an army. I personally think that the Night Spinner helps keep Eldar fresh and give them a nice little boost to hold them over till their new codex.
The third and final item on the docket is support. GWs customer service when it comes to sales is top notch. GW takes care of you when an item you bought is defective. The support I'm talking about is on the rules side of things. Not to sound like a broken record but take a page from Warmachine and have a way for players to have their rules questions answered. Whether it be a message forum, email or even old fashioned snail mail. You can even publish randoms rules questions and answers in White Dwarf. Another change that would be nice is attempt to do more play testing for new rule books or codexes. Maybe even involve a few gaming clubs in the play testing (after signing NDAs of course). Changes like this will make GW's customer base feel that GW cares about their customers (a feeling that has been lacking as of late).
Now you might ask how will these type of changes put more change in GWs pockets? Easy, almost every idea I put forth will increase sales for GW. New story arcs and fluff (with the possibility of a campaign) will boost sales for new books and new models introduced here and there. Also the possibility of bringing backsomeone who stopped playing will be huge. Packaging the rules with new models for either new armies or old will increase interest in all armies, not just the flavor of the month, which will increase sales across the board. Having a Q and A column in White Dwarf will increase subscriptions. Making your customers feel like they are appreciated will keep them happy and make them buy more of your product.
Sometimes you have a give a little to get a lot back. Risks have to be taken because you miss 100% of the shots you don't attempt. Doings things just because "that's how we've always done it" is not the way to keep your business afloat.
Any changes you think GW should make or is business as usual the way you think GW should continue to conduct business? Are my changes stupid ideas or do they actually make sense? Am I just wishing GW to be more like Privateer Press? Sound off and let us know!