Meeples & Miniatures – Episode 95 – Raven’s Shadow, Dreadball, Judge Dredd, X-Wing & W40K
Welcome to Episode 95 of the Meeples & Miniatures Podcast
In this show, I am joined once again by Rich Jones & Mike Hobbs and we discuss what games we have been playing since our last podcast together.
The discussion is wide ranging, and cover subjects such as Raven’s Shadow (the new Saga supplement), The Dreadball & Judge Dredd Kickstarter projects, X-Wing and even Warhammer 40,000 6th Edition.
I hope you enjoy the show.
Huh??? Did I just hear someone saying that other companies are going GW with their prices???
And then quoting the 25 quid Bolt Action rulebook as an example???
I’ll start an Ork army from scratch, like mr Hobbs: rulebook 45 + codex 20 + battleforce 65 + ork commander 15 = £145 giving me 1HQ, 2 troops and a fast attack… (waaaay off from mr Hobb’s 2000pt army)
Bolt Action: rulebook 25 + no army book needed + box plastic troops 20 = £45 giving me enough figures for a commander, with two full squads and (for the Brits I have myself) a light mortar team and a PIAT team. For the remaining £100 I can buy pretty much every option in the army list, including vehicles…
All prices at RRP
Well, it was Rich that quoted the example of Bolt Action…
Whilst I don’t agree with Rich when comparing prices on Historical miniatures, he does have a point when looking at other sci-fi / fantasy games & miniatures.
Infinity from Corus Belli has single models for £7+ each, with a box set of six models costing £30.
Malifaux starter box sets have 5 models for ~£25, and individual models are £5-£9
Bushido have Starter sets of 5 models for £28, and individual models average about £8+
Avatars of War individual models are priced at £8.50+. Even the Box set of plastic Dwarfs are £22.00
Pig Iron Productions have 10 models for £17.50
Now admittedly, lots of these models are metal compared to GW plastic & resin, but we are approaching the same sort of ballpark for some miniatures. I don’t happen to agree with Rich – especially when you start looking at some GW pices (Blood Knights anyone?) but it is certainly true that non-GW companies are now charging more than they once did.
Sorry about that Mr Hobbs 😦
Even when comparing the games you mention with GW, yes the figures may be as expensive but:
these games all give their full rules away for free! (Granted, the Malifaux expansions aren’t)
And I don’t mind paying that much for those figures because I need fewer of them anyway. As a matter of fact, I could buy decent forces for all three games from the “from scratch Ork force”
These are all low level skirmish games, when it comes to 40K sized games, you don’t even want to compare it with its only real contender: Warpath…
And Mantic is most definitely not “the poor man’s GW”… Not with what I’ve spent on their recent kickstart campaigns (probably enough for 2000 points of Orks 😉
To be fair, you’re having the discussion with the wrong presenter 🙂
Rich, would you like to chime in on this?
I think it’s definately true that many sci-fi/fantasy systems are very much leaning towards GW’s pricing. The fact that skirmish systems are easier to make overall (cheaper for smaller companies), easier to argue people to get into it and are somewhat more fashionable these days in terms of fantasy/sci-fi doesn’t take away from the fact that stuff like Infinity has become darned expensive on a by-figure basis. Keep in mind that I really, really enjoy Infinity (apart from there being too darned many special rules 😉 ) and I love the minis. Still, they are expensive.
Let’s see what happens when fantasy/sci-fi larger/mass battles are more fashionable again and sci-fi/fantasy companies keep these prices. As long as you aren’t up there with GW in terms of pricing you will be considered a better buy (unless the minis really, really look cheaper/less good). It has to be said that prices in general are going up though. In this and other regards Warlord Games are indeed “going GW”, however this isn’t an all bad thing at all. I’m not a GW fanboy, I have my own gripes with the systems and whatnot but GW a.) is still around and I’d wager that their situation is pretty good compared to the past seven years or so, b.) they keep on releasing what the people who buy from them like, c.) they get people into wargaming and even if someone is fed up with GW they usually go on to other kinds of tabletop wargaming instead of quitting altogether.
About Mantic – there are several points people make about them with which I disagree BUT everything else aside, they’re superclever with what they do.
Ludo, no need to call me Mr Hobbs (my dad was Mr Hobbs) Mike is fine 😉
Bolt Action was only mentioned as a prelude to talking about it (we ran out of time this session) and the references to GW prices now being standard was reference to the myriad of boutique games which now charge £7 up for a figure – something that was unheard of in the past.
Does annoy me how people blindly people criticise GW while happily building up their 150 figure plus ancient or Nap army which will cost them a couple hundred. My samurai army made from Perry figures is more than my Ork or Space marine army. People want everything for nothing I am afraid…
Ludo – you don’t have to agree with me but it doesn’t stop me being right 🙂
An interesting podcast, as always. However, while I agree with the sentiment expressed by one of your guests that if you can’t afford something you should save up for it, I think he misses a point. The point in case being that wargaming has its roots in playing with toy soldiers and is a good entry level hobby for those of limited means.
If one agrees with this premise, then the rise in prices can be seen as quite troubling? Troubling in that it would indicate that the market is being led by older adults with larger disposable incomes, which in and of itself is neither good, nor bad. However, it would seem to indicate an aging demographic and perhaps showing a shrinking of the hobby base with less new younger players taking up miniature wargaming.
This I would ague is not a good thing.
Whilst I agree that the hobby needs to be approachable to new (and possibly) younger players I still believe that for the hobby to survive the manufacturers need to charge appropriately and as consumers we have to accept that prices will rise. I think the use of the word “troubling” to describe the rises is highly emotive, it seems to suggest some sinister motive is at play when for the vast majority of small manufactures prices have to rise to allow them to stay in business, margins are that tight at the moment.
Compared to other hobbies it’s still really cheap if people stick to 1 or 2 games/periods, but as we all have a tendency to want everything that’s released it can get expensive. (the shinny model syndrome.) This I would argue is not a fault of the manufactures but of the consumers, and maybe it’s caused by peer pressure or a need to show off the latest fad. The simple fact is some models are cheap some are expensive, if you want the expensive ones then look at your disposable income and only buy it when you can afford it.
The whole greying of the hobby is I think a different subject, we know a lot of younger players are entering the hobby, but the route many of them take may not be the best for the long term survival of it. however I think that is changing and we are now seeing young players trying out Historical (or semi Historical) games and this is down to manufactures accepting that they need to make games accessible to different genres of players and not just sell to the existing market
But thank you for your well written and well thought out comments, to be honest as soon as I opened my mouth I thought I would be lambasted by a mob. In fact I was surprised Neil was so quiet during the recording as we often discuss this subject and have different views 😉
My only quible here is the the description of troubling as highly emotive. i would suggest that OMG, WTF are you serious etc. would be examples of highly emotive words, or phrases. Troubling is far more on par with “I had a spot of trouble when flying over Berlin last night in the Lancaster. old boy”.
yeah you are right I withdraw the troubling remark
PS just been reading your blog, great stuff consider it bookmarked
Thank you. Glad you enjoyed your visit to my blog. You re welcome anytime.
Really enjoyed the show.
I liked the podcast. For $20 I’ll pick up the 40K mini rulebook and if it looks like a solid game then it certainly won’t be hard to find other players. GW is a (perhaps justifiably) easy target but if the new edition is fun then why not play?
What do you think of blue table painting doing a kickstarter looking for $40.000 to by stock ?
I just had a look at it. First reaction is…WTF?!
I honestly cannot see their being any reason why you would want to back this…unless you REALLY wanted 3 painting DVDs.
Some of the pledge goals are just…well. ”Get your name engraved on a plaque in our office” – whoa, hold me back!
This is just mystifying…