After much speculation, it now looks like Games Workshop will not be applying an across the board price increase on models this year.
And there was much rejoicing.
Or was there?
Because this month we have seen Eldar Dire Avengers repackaged into a five model box for the same price as the previous box of ten. So the price might technically have gone up, but the cost certainly has, to the tune of 100%.
This sparked a furious debate among Phil and the rest of the gang on the Of Dice and Men podcast. There was a lot of speculation about whether we might see other sets like Space Marine Tactical Squads similarly repackaged. Sadly this possibility seems all too plausible to me.
I try not to be too irrational about GW prices. I try not to be like the people who feel entitled to protest when a publicly traded company with responsibilities to its shareholders acts like one. But this latest move really is bullshit. It’s a nasty, sneaky, petty little move, and it’s been carried out so blatantly and crassly that you can’t help but feel your intelligence has been insulted that they would do this right under our noses.
As I’ve said in previous posts, the cost has always been the biggest barrier to me getting back into GW games. I had been lured back into their orbit by the shiny Tau Empire, High Elves and Eldar releases, but this has been an important reminder, not just of the cost issue, but also of the all important cock-factor that helps us determine who we want to give our money too.
Prices go up. Inflation applies to pretty much everything, from crayons to laptops, from brushes to Forgeworld titans. But gratuitous price hikes like this really do piss off the consumer. Sure other companies raise their model prices too, but never to the same degree and they are still generally cheaper pound for pound. The few who are really expensive are generally producing minis for games you only need a handful of models for like MERCS, where once you have parted with your platinum and rubies for a faction box, you never really need spend a penny on it again.
The problem with GW has always been the amount of stuff you have to buy compared to other companies to have a viable force, especially the amount of ‘boring’ stuff you have to buy before you can try to squeeze in the cool shiny stuff with loads of dakka. And if you want lots of the cool stuff, you need to get more of the dull stuff too. It is unfortunate also that a lot of the really cool stuff is the most expensive, simply because of basic economies of scale and the fact that GW can’t sell as much of them so have to make their cost back with higher prices. This is why Greatswords cost so much more than State Troops and the Ball Predator is more than a normal one.
Collecting a GW army is increasingly looking like a long, tortuous and above all expensive road to follow. I think I will try another path.
In other news, my Warzone stuff is being sent out on the 24th, so hopefully I will have something new play with – and to review for The Shell Case – soon. Plus, I’m minded to check out Sedition Wars. [Because it’s the tits. Ed]
Any skirmish games my fellow Warmongers would suggest I check out? Leave a comment below.