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Model distribution needs to change

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Please keep it civil so this thread doesn't get locked too.

Distribution of guild ball models has been a mess since they switched from blisters to multi model boxes and we're the ones suffering from it. First we had the issue where if you only owned part of a guild before the switchover the only option to complete that guild was to buy the expensive 6 model boxes even though they likely contained models you already owned or scour games stores for leftover blisters. Then we had Faithful of Solthecius where 5 of the models were released separately or in other boxes which many Union players had already bought... but it's the only way to get Pride.

Now we have not one but two £50 boxes which contain models split across 5-6 different guilds. It's starting to get ridiculous.

Yes I recognise there's ways around this. Splitting boxes up with friends, selling what you don't want, etc etc. But that's not really practical for everyone, my own GB group is small and pretty casual and it's unlikely I could part it out efficiently. But that's besides the point. Just because there are solutions doesn't mean that it isn't a problem, in fact it's indicative that it is a problem.

Steamforged is basically just chucking random models in a box at this point and telling us to deal with it if we don't own every team in the game. It's a poor way to distribute a miniatures game and doesn't bode well for its future. Because short of releasing a new box of players (like they're doing with the minor guilds) it seems like this is what we're going to have to deal with every time they release new models for existing guilds.

SFG either needs to find a better way to sell boxes of models or go back to blisters.

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. If you want to start with a minor guild and you don't play the major guild, you will need to buy at least one 6-pack of the major guild. When they play really dirty they take 1 model from each major guild pack leaving you with 10 models you don't want. This way the game becomes way to expensive.

Have had some bad experiences with buying and selling online, Therefore I mostly buy in shops or conventions. So Ebay is not a solution for the problem.

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Good thoughts - I think getting these concerns posted for SFG to see in writing is important. 

I don't want to sound like I'm making excuses for SFG, as I think this policy is decidedly anti-consumer, but I understand why they would do it this way in an effort to support FLGS's and ultimately the game. 

Any normal FLGS can only realistically support so many product lines, and reducing multiple individual blisters to one box makes ordering and inventory management much easier for the FLGS. It also ensures that they don't have "dead product" sitting on the shelves, i.e. blisters that nobody wants to buy. As any retail store pays up-front for product in their store, anything on a shelf that isn't selling is costing the FLGS money. Run into this problem with one game enough, and you'll simply stop carrying it altogether. 

There is also the added bonus to SFG and the game that if you're forced to buy models for guilds you don't want right now, you may ultimately end up picking up the guild because you already have that one model you want to try out.

At the end of day, SFG will probably only stop doing it this way if people stop buying these boxes. 

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2 minutes ago, Biff'd said:

Good thoughts - I think getting these concerns posted for SFG to see in writing is important. 

I don't want to sound like I'm making excuses for SFG, as I think this policy is decidedly anti-consumer, but I understand why they would do it this way in an effort to support FLGS's and ultimately the game. 

Any normal FLGS can only realistically support so many product lines, and reducing multiple individual blisters to one box makes ordering and inventory management much easier for the FLGS. It also ensures that they don't have "dead product" sitting on the shelves, i.e. blisters that nobody wants to buy. As any retail store pays up-front for product in their store, anything on a shelf that isn't selling is costing the FLGS money. Run into this problem with one game enough, and you'll simply stop carrying it altogether. 

There is also the added bonus to SFG and the game that if you're forced to buy models for guilds you don't want right now, you may ultimately end up picking up the guild because you already have that one model you want to try out.

At the end of day, SFG will probably only stop doing it this way if people stop buying these boxes. 

GW did exactly the same and people just stopped buying, I was one of them.

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I plan to pick up the Exiles as I have enough guilds to make use of 4/6 models. Which is great and all... but I'm still sitting on 2 dead models and half a Mortician's guild who I still need the Scalpel for.

I don't know what the solution is, but I'm not buying the second Morts box.

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39 minutes ago, JacctheInsomniac said:

I plan to pick up the Exiles as I have enough guilds to make use of 4/6 models. Which is great and all... but I'm still sitting on 2 dead models and half a Mortician's guild who I still need the Scalpel for.

I don't know what the solution is, but I'm not buying the second Morts box.

Sell or trade the two you don't need. There will obviously be a market for them. 

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8 minutes ago, Toqtamish said:

Sell or trade the two you don't need. There will obviously be a market for them. 

SFG and by extension the LGS have made the decision to do business. I as a customer did not. So exporting their problems to me is not very nice, is it?

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8 minutes ago, alopex said:

SFG and by extension the LGS have made the decision to do business. I as a customer did not. So exporting their problems to me is not very nice, is it?

Then don't do that if you don't want to avail yourself of that option. 

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Just because a solution exists to this problem doesn't mean there isn't a problem. SFG is showing some very real growing pains here caused by the departure from single model blisters, and people shouldn't have to be jumping through secondary market hoops to get the product that they want. I'm hopeful that there are long term solutions in the works, because I'd be disappointed and concerned if this continues into next year.

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6 minutes ago, Akaleth said:

Just because a solution exists to this problem doesn't mean there isn't a problem. SFG is showing some very real growing pains here caused by the departure from single model blisters, and people shouldn't have to be jumping through secondary market hoops to get the product that they want. I'm hopeful that there are long term solutions in the works, because I'd be disappointed and concerned if this continues into next year.

Can only agree, I'm afraid.

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1 hour ago, Toqtamish said:

Sell or trade the two you don't need. There will obviously be a market for them. 

 

It's easy to forget that Guild Ball is still growing, and outside of big cities and its own birthplace it's struggling to pick up traction. The effort I have to put in to even network with people who play is immense. Let alone the chances of meeting a player who plays exactly the right guilds I don't own to split the boxes, and meeting them before they themselves decide to bite the bullet and pick up the box for themselves. Oh but sell online you might say.

The problem is still there, and it really isn't productive to just deny it.

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57 minutes ago, JacctheInsomniac said:

It's easy to forget that Guild Ball is still growing, and outside of big cities and its own birthplace it's struggling to pick up traction. The effort I have to put in to even network with people who play is immense. Let alone the chances of meeting a player who plays exactly the right guilds I don't own to split the boxes, and meeting them before they themselves decide to bite the bullet and pick up the box for themselves. Oh but sell online you might say.

The problem is still there, and it really isn't productive to just deny it.

I'm sorry but how did I deny it ? I offered a solution. You respond with derision. I live in small town Nova Scotia and split the Exiles box in less than a minute except for Harriett. What model(s) are you looking for exactly ?

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1 minute ago, Toqtamish said:

I'm sorry but how did I deny it ? I offered a solution. You respond with derision. I live in small town Nova Scotia and split the Exiles box in less than a minute except for Harriett. What model(s) are you looking for exactly ?

You're also a pundit, it's kindof a prerequisite for you to network with players. Small towns are more conducive to this sort of thing than small cities, unless I'm misunderstanding you here.

46 minutes ago, Toqtamish said:

Sell or trade the two you don't need. There will obviously be a market for them. 

The advice here doesn't afford any regard to the complexity and effort involved in finding a buyer and ensuring that everyone can get the models they want, without winding up with models they don't, or to the fact that this is a level of effort that really shouldn't fall to the consumer at all.

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32 minutes ago, Toqtamish said:

I'm sorry but how did I deny it ? I offered a solution. You respond with derision. I live in small town Nova Scotia and split the Exiles box in less than a minute except for Harriett. What model(s) are you looking for exactly ?

Because the secondary market isn't a solution, it's a bandaid. Some people (yourself included) might think that it's a good enough bandaid for this problem, but for many people, it's not. It doesn't matter how easy it is to find sellers/buyers for the models you do/don't want, because for many people (myself included), I want that product easily accessible on the shelf at my game store. I don't want to worry about references and shipping costs and Paypal fees and insurance and tracking and worrying about getting my goods from someone I don't know. I've done that enough selling Magic cards over the years. I don't need it in Guild Ball.

Whether or not you agree with the people who believe that this method of model distribution is wrong, or inconvenient, or The Worst Thing Ever, or however they might describe it, people are unhappy with what it's going to take to get the models that they want, and that is a problem.

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Right. Enough. 

People will be getting warnings, and I will happily escalate those to bans if it happens again.

Disagree but be polite about it, or don’t post. 

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What sort of policy does SF have on stores breaking up boxes and re selling them?  That seems like a nice easy solution of game stores if it's allowed, at least until SF can figure out a way to fix things.

 

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1 minute ago, IHatethePuppy said:

What sort of policy does SF have on stores breaking up boxes and re selling them?  That seems like a nice easy solution of game stores if it's allowed, at least until SF can figure out a way to fix things.

 

I can fix things for them real easy. Go back to single blisters and forget this episode even happened. If SF are going to let stores sell the minis individually then there's no point in boxing in sixes in the first place. Never gonna happen.  

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Just now, IHatethePuppy said:

What sort of policy does SF have on breaking up boxes and re selling them?  That seems like a nice easy solution of game stores if it's allowed, at least until SF can figure out a way to fix things.

 

Obligatory IANAL: I highly doubt that game stores/licensed SFG retailers have the ability to break up product, because they should be selling based on SKUs when it comes to sealed product. I don't think there's anything stopping an individual from doing so, however, and I wouldn't be surprised if some people take advantage of that - both for the upcoming UIC boxes as well as people who need models from the 6-model repacks. 

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36 minutes ago, Akaleth said:

Obligatory IANAL: I highly doubt that game stores/licensed SFG retailers have the ability to break up product, because they should be selling based on SKUs when it comes to sealed product. I don't think there's anything stopping an individual from doing so, however, and I wouldn't be surprised if some people take advantage of that - both for the upcoming UIC boxes as well as people who need models from the 6-model repacks. 

I would've figured TCG Single-selling already set a precedent for this, actually, but I have zero understanding of retail and supply logistics.

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Best of both worlds:

Sell single blisters AND have the 6 player boxes at a slight discount. This is a problem that exists only with the old metal guilds. Plastic 6 man boxes are fine. It's the random missing metal models and buying an expensive box to get one model that is creating the problem in the first place.

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10 minutes ago, supertzar said:

Best of both worlds:

Sell single blisters AND have the 6 player boxes at a slight discount. This is a problem that exists only with the old metal guilds. Plastic 6 man boxes are fine. It's the random missing metal models and buying an expensive box to get one model that is creating the problem in the first place.

This is not entirely true. If you are unlucky you have to buy 2 boxes of the major Guild to have the 2 allowed players of the minor Guild. This is very expensive and also a problem, even in plastic.

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4 minutes ago, alopex said:

This is not entirely true. If you are unlucky you have to buy 2 boxes of the major Guild to have the 2 allowed players of the minor Guild. This is very expensive and also a problem, even in plastic.

No I meant that you'd have all the metal models in blisters so if you play a minor gulid you could just get 2 blisters and have all available models. And if you wanted the metal guilds as a whole you could buy the big box and get everything with a small discount. It would improve the situation to a point where the only problem models would be the minor dual guild players. I'm not really sure how to fix the whole situation but I never REALLY understood the choice to ditch blisters and sell only boxes. I just don't understand the decision why we can't have both.

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6 minutes ago, supertzar said:

No I meant that you'd have all the metal models in blisters so if you play a minor gulid you could just get 2 blisters and have all available models. And if you wanted the metal guilds as a whole you could buy the big box and get everything with a small discount. It would improve the situation to a point where the only problem models would be the minor dual guild players. I'm not really sure how to fix the whole situation but I never REALLY understood the choice to ditch blisters and sell only boxes. I just don't understand the decision why we can't have both.

Agree

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