GW pricing

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Kovlovsky
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Re: GW pricing

Post by Kovlovsky » Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:21 pm

I will do the devil's advocate there. There are plenty of 3rd party companies that make plastic miniatures that are often really detailled for at 20 to 30% less in cost than GW. When you buy at GW, you pay a premium for the label really. It's like when you buy Nike shoes. They probably make 70-80% profits on them simply because you pay a huge amount of money just for the check symbol on it and because the shoes are made in Bangladesh by ultra exploited workers that have a hard time eating and finding lodgings. I will give to GW that they still produce their miniatures in UK which is to their merit really, so they probably don't have the profit margins of Nike, but they certainly do a confortable at least 50-60% profits. Personally, I find this way too much. Remember that it's an industrial process. They're not cast by hand. A single soldier probably don't cost them much more than 1$ to make and I'm generous.

But in the end, this will be to their lost in the long run because it already is making people switching to other game systems that need less or cheaper miniatures to play. By example, for Bolt Action I can get 40 Soviet soldiers including a sniper team and an antitank rifle team for 50$ US while the same number of GW Imperial Guardsmen would cost me 116$ US (https://us-store.warlordgames.com/colle ... ic-box-set VS https://www.games-workshop.com/en-US/Im ... ock-Troops). Both are 28mm systems although the IG are slightly bigger. And there is Perry Miniatures that make extremely nice historical miniatures and I can get 40 miniatures of pikemen, crossbowmen and handgunners for 20 pounds while the same amount of Halberdiers/Crossbowmen/Halberdiers would cost me a considerable 62 pounds (https://www.perry-miniatures.com/produc ... 3hfolvqok5 VS https://www.games-workshop.com/en-GB/Em ... ate-Troops)! Again, both are 28mm systems.

So my question is why smaller companies do achieve to make a profit with cheaper miniatures AND sell their miniatures in local shops? It's because they're not greedy and probably because they don't have as much bureaucracy as GW. "Small is beautiful" like they say. So I think your argument about 3rd retailers is pretty moot since they sell cheaper miniatures with profits. The Start Collectings are a symbol of what GW could achieve if they were less greedy. For 100$ CAN you get miniatures that would often been worth 140$+ separately. If you believe they don't make money on the Start Collecting, then you don't know GW very well. I saw a whole bunch of people telling that 40k complex rules are the biggest problem for prospective hobbyists, but I don't think it's even close to the truth. The real obstacle is and always been cost. You need a lot of miniatures AND they cost more than the competition. I know a whole bunch of people who say to me: "I would totally play 40k, but I've not the money to make it worth it." And these people usually play to other systems or not at all instead. We all know people in that situation. You can get over complex rules if you want it, but you can't spend the money you don't have or you're going to have immediate real life problems.
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Kovlovsky
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Re: GW pricing

Post by Kovlovsky » Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:43 pm

blippityblip wrote:With the argument of other companies products being cheaper would you say they were the same quality though? Not just in looks but in raw material used, I mean I've seen some stunning models from other companies, usually stand alone models and they are priced around the same or quite a bit of the time they are higher priced, then I have also seen models that I'd say looked like they would fit in the GW range 20years ago and these are a lot cheape, I've used bits from kromlech and while they are cheaper and the visual quality isn't far off they have been made out of very brittle material, which while GW still uses its finecast their more general plastic seems to be second to none
First, let's not compare apples and oranges. Kromlech make resin bits. You can't compare them to plastic stuff. I have no Kromlech stuff, but I have Scibor stuff that is from Poland too and the bits I got were of much much better quality than the Finecast stuff from GW. There were a few mold lines, but no bubble and it was crisp. Finecast stuff is always full of bubbles with many poorly cast parts. I would say it was slightly inferior to FW stuff though, but it was way cheaper.

Now if you compare GW plastic with the examples I gave you here, I would say that Perry Miniatures reach the same quality than GW while Warlord Games (Bolt Action) is inferior in quality to newer GW models, but comparable or a bit better than older GW stuff like IG guardsmen or CSMs. Their plastic tanks are made by Italeri (a renowned scale models italian company) and are easily comparable in quality to GW tanks. With GW you pay a huge premium for the brand whatever the quality of what you are buying.
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Re: GW pricing

Post by Signet-Powers » Wed Apr 12, 2017 7:19 am

blippityblip wrote:the same job which isn't too far off minimum wage is now paying £8.50 an hour for the exact same position I was in when I was 16,
That's more than double the minimum wage for 16 year olds. £8.50 is the government target for the living wage, the amount of money required to survive on. Very few 16 year olds are going to be paid that much. Almost no jobs I know of pay that much and no 16 year old I know gets paid more than minimum wage. And when it costs about £120 a week for the cheaper flats, not including food, water and other bills, paying upwards of hundreds for a hobby that's not that popular and takes considerable time and effort to set up a single game, isn't ideal for majority of people. especially when other hobbies other immediate, cheaper and more frequent options.

Anyway, GW is barely profitable as it is because they figured out they can trick us already invested customers into buying more stuff through formations offering units for free points (demi-companies) and overpowered models for expensive prices. if they wanted to charge less, they could. But they have a monopoly over the market and so can charge whatever they want.

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Re: GW pricing

Post by Kovlovsky » Thu Apr 13, 2017 11:28 am

Sperian wrote: Also, not to sound harsh but hobbies are a luxury not a basic human right. If you can't afford it then get a cheaper hobby! :mrgreen:
I think that the substance of my argument has been overlooked. I'm not stupid. I know that is hobby will always be expensive. I wasn't making the point that it should be cheap. My point was that GW artificially makes it way more expensive that it should be and showed examples of 3rd party companies that make products of similar quality for cheaper. Also, GW themselves show with their super successful Start Collecting boxes that they can sell their products much cheaper and making money with them. With GW, you pay a premium for the brand. This drives away customers and slows the growth of the player base. By selling their products cheaper, their customer base would expand and they would probably make more money than currently especially that they have diversified their products with attractive mini games.
General-Kroll wrote:On the subject of other manufacturers. I'd say there's a bit of a range in pricing. If you look at Victoria Miniatures, or Wargame Exclusive, they are significantly MORE expensive than their gw equivalent models. The detail used is great in both manufacturers models, but the resin used just isn't as good as FW or Finecast. It's very brittle and you can easily ruin the model of you aren't careful during mold line clean up.

As for GW having a monopoly, it's pretty clear that they do not. There are a miriad of other war games available nowadays, from a vast array of manufacturers.
Resin manufacturers will always have more expensive products than the equivalent in plastic because the molds don't last for as long and it's generally used for "prestige" miniatures, so it's not surprising that they have a higher price. Personally, I found the pricing of the third party producers of resin product to be comparable or cheaper to FW. However, I radically disagree with you on something. Finecast isn't of higher quality. It's not nicknamed "Finecrap" for nothing. It's among the crudest and lowest quality resin products I've ever seen. It's brittle, full of flashes, bubbles, miscast parts and it's often warped. I found russian and even chinese products of higher quality than Finecast. It's not nearly worth half of what I got from Scibor and others. My resin TS parts that I got one to two years ago were of absolutely atrocious quality to the point I nearly returned them. The russian 3rd party TS and terminator TS parts I got from Ebay were radically superior in quality.
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Re: GW pricing

Post by Guildenstern » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:15 pm

I'd just like to point out, that due to GWs very very loyal fanbase, especially with the new CEO, if they were to make their products less expensive I highly doubt they'd be able to keep up with production.

I suspect some of it is the resellers like ebayers etc but whenever a super new product comes out how often is it out of stock within an hour?

If they were to lower prices, I forsee that being much more of a problem. Although I guess maybe eventually it'd even out, with ebayers for instance and other resellers making less money and therefore possibly buying less to resell.

At least GW has put some limits in on # of items you can purchase on the new stuff (at least in some instances) which is nice.

Rather than lowering their prices, I think they'd be much better served to start increasing production runs. They do seem to have a pretty good idea what is going to sell really well, usually. Though not always it seems.

More stuff like the start collecting boxes - maybe an expansion box - or even buy 5 tanks, get the 6th 1/2 off type of thing, that'd be more like what I'd want to see than just lowering prices per se.

Anyway just some random thoughts :P
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Kovlovsky
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Re: GW pricing

Post by Kovlovsky » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:34 pm

Guildenstern wrote: Rather than lowering their prices, I think they'd be much better served to start increasing production runs. They do seem to have a pretty good idea what is going to sell really well, usually. Though not always it seems.
My answer to this is: Why not do both? :P It's how Henry Ford succeed. He adopted the most modern mass production techniques for his factory, notably the assembly line, and pushed foward the development and production of the first affordable middle class car (the Ford model T). Before him, the car was strictly a luxury product that could only be afforded by the higher classes and after him, it became a common product and made a fortune in the process. Sure, miniature wargaming will never become a common hobby, but when your production doesn't meet the demand it means it's time to expand production. And when you produce more, the rarity goes down and the price will normally go down too. Otherwise, the concurence will outshine you and you will start losing market shares. The higher are your prices, the less customers will want to pay for it. They will either seek alternative sources or refrain for buying.

In the 1980s and maybe until early 2000s, they didn't have sizable competitors. Now, it's different. So, if I was in GW's shoes, even though the policies of the new CEO have worked, I would start considering lowering prices and step up production if I wanted to grow the customer base. The fact that it's a relatively niche hobby doesn't mean it cannot grow with the right policies and the number of successful new game systems show that there is room for growth.
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Re: GW pricing

Post by Guildenstern » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:50 pm

This is true I suppose! As long as they don't get to the point where they are cutting quality to justify expanding. They have such a good quality in their products generally.

If they were to lower costs at least the entry level armies would be even more approachable for younger people. I'm sure many would say, for instance, with AoS moving to more of a skirmish game, and needing therefore needing less models, that it's already cheaper. However, I could see how a parent buying something for their child would see it - you need how much for this game? Unless they're stinking rich :P or into the hobby themselves, I can see it being a stopping point for them.

Not a major point, just something I'm thinking about in terms of expanding the game, which means to me, getting kids in, like 12+ because that's when they're typically quite curious. I always support kids learning strategic games, so's to excercise their brains, as well as creativity.

On another kinda OT but interesting note, it does seem GW is finally listening to the people who've been after them to make more female friendly models - ie the female stormcast models. So, there is another market they're trying to tap into, which hopefully will also mean expansion and therefore more products (and thus less cost?!)
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