Monday, March 06, 2006

It's been more than a week since I returned from PrexCon, and I still don't have my notes together. Guess I'll have to publish things bit by bit, as this one:

At PrezCon one of the game manufacturers told me about what he called the "collapse of the distributors". Along about 1995, distributor orders for wargames dropped drastically. At that time collectible card games were really big, and I understand from other information that in effect the CCGs took over the retail stores. This manufacturer now acts as their own distributor (and can actually make more money, as they got 40% of list from a distributor, but charge 54% of list directly to the retailer).

This came to mind when talking with someone who preordered a copy of Brit in the Washington DC area. The store called him to come get his copy. While there he asked to buy another. Other than two other preorders, they had none! The store caters to miniatures gamers, boardgamers, and role players, but despite having three preorders for Brit had ordered (or at least, had received) no more.

When he put in his preorder, he originally asked the clerk if they would stock Brit. "Uh, what company makes it". He said he thought it was the same company that made DOOM. "Oh, yes, we get all the FFG games". FFG is identified with role-playing, cards, and and fantasy in general, as well as with boardgames.

So it's good fortune, from the point of view of introducing new people to the game, that it's published by a company that still has clout with distributors. Despite the experience with this particular store.

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