|I admit that Tzeentch may not bring all the changes we want, but at least things would change.|
That's right, I'm not just throwing a list of complaints at the wall, I'm looking at this seriously. While there are a lot of things about GW I like (for instance I love the detail level the new plastic kits are capable of) but at the same time I am willing to admit things aren't perfect. I mean I wouldn't still have an all metal Sisters army even after getting two new codexes if they were. So this is my list of the things, that to me, are the biggest things I wish GW would change.
10. Recognize people play the games competitivelyAnyone who has been playing the game for a while already knows this: people like tournaments. They allow people to play lots of games in short amounts of time and give people a reason to try out the latest combo, or try out something new.
Of course this also ties into GW's issues concerning balance, where they basically pretend that there is no issue because the game isn't designed to be played competitively (and even if you only play casually like I do there is nothing wrong with better rules. The tighter the ruleset the better the game will play, it's just a simple fact).
9. Standardize the gamesSomething that ties into balance and I feel would go a long way to helping improve the game. And yes, I do mean "standardize". Starting from a standard template where the points are set to 0 increase the points value based on certain changes (such as increasing Weapon Skill, or improving the armour save or adding a rule such as Fleet). This way everything is based on the same sliding scale no matter what book it's from and how good/bad it is. It gets everything on the same page, makes everything balance out a lot better and generally kills the "this is too expensive" and "this is too cheap" problem as everything would be on the same scale regardless of what book it's from.
Pushing beyond this though, I feel that the games should be a lot closer in mechanics. It makes it easier to switch from one game to the next so you don't need to learn as much to learn one if you already know the other, which encourages the fanbases of both to cross-pollinate each other and get people looking at the "other game" GW makes with a bit more interest.
Basically get templates to make designing new things better and more on a standard scale, and then standardize the rules as much as possible to make it easier to play both games.
8. Errata, Errata, Errata
I don't think anyone can really argue with this one: more erratas, more often and actually adjust things. Playerbase unhappy because there is an issue that breaks the game? Or perhaps a new model is so unintentionally so powerful that it threaten to ruin the game. Rather than waiting for a new codex, or until the next FAQ update potentially a year later these should be addressed as quickly as the problem is realized.
This of course means a dedicated FAQ team to handle things, and also brings us to the next point...
7. Approaching the Community
It's no real surprise that I feel GW needs to be more connected to the community. Forums, Facebook, Twitter and whatever comes out next all need to be tapped into. GW is sorely in need of a Community Management team who can update posts, act as a buffer between devs and the community and get our input to them, and in return get us responses back. Of course this ties into the FAQ team as well, but the two teams should be separate even if they work in tandem to keep from overloading any one person or group.
6. Experimental Rules/PlaytestingNow some people may not be aware but Forge World often releases experimental rules for things, either to update them or to test out new models before they put them into the next book.
I feel the main studio needs to copy this heavily. It's a really simple idea too:
Step 1. Release a new model kit
Step 2. Put experimental rules in the White Dwarf, and then a week later put a PDF of them online.
Step 3. Community management and FAQ team field questions, accept input and relay the information to the devs
Step 4. Devs make changes and incorporate improved version of the model/unit into the next codex.
This does a few things. First it gives GW a way to monetize a new kit for an army long before the update comes out, secondly it gives players an ability to give feedback on the new thing, and lastly it puts everyone in a position of basically winning because they make money, we get to give feedback about the game and both sides get what they want.
5. Kill the Brick and Mortar Stores
Well, alright maybe not all of the GW stores, just most of them. I'm going to assume right now that this is probably one of things I think needs to happen that will bring the most mixed responses. Let me explain:
In 2013 58% of GW's revenue (that is the money we gave them) was spent on Operating Expenses. Now these expenses cover a lot of things ranging from paychecks for everyone in the company who don't work in the casting room or on the dev team, insurance costs, and largest of all: the physical stores.
It's clear GW knows that the stores aren't a successful plan anymore, and are trying to rethink how they work to make them successful, frankly most of them can just go away. Consolidate them to locations around major cities, or get rid of them completely but frankly they're not helping the company, and that isn't really helping us. I mean, when was the last time someone told you of a time they really enjoyed going to a GW store?
I thought so.
With the removal of most/all physical stores GW would be able to afford to lower prices for the first time in a very long time. Even if it was as little as 10% it'd be enough to get people to serious consider buying models more often than they do now. Not to mention it'd still leave GW with plenty of money as they're still available world wide online and in more Friendly Local Gaming Stores (FLGS) than they could ever hope to have actual stores. The closed GWs? Perfect places to start new gaming stores who can monetize a wider range of products instead of just GW's and make the location profitable (as some former GW employees have done when GW pulled up shop and left the formerly occupied space vacant).
So what could they do with that extra money? Well throw it into expanding production, as well as some other community oriented things (such as those community managers I mentioned). All things that would improve customer loyalty to the company and generally go a long way to growing the company further.
Sometimes to make a tree grow healthy and strong you have to prune, and that's all I'm saying here.
3. Prioritize Updates
This may seem a bit like a no-brainer, and that's why it's so close to number one on my list: update armies from oldest to newest. Additionally, update all the armies in a game system before starting a new edition.
There isn't a single person I've met who doesn't want more toys to choose from in their army or doesn't want their codex updated in a new edition (beyond the fear that GW will somehow nerf the army into the ground, but that doesn't mean people don't want to enjoy their army having some time in the spotlight).
Putting the oldest armies first gives us a steady schedule, spaces updates out nice and equally (giving devs time to think new ideas up for the next time around) and while there is still room for them to surprise us with new stuff (Codex: Chaos Knights comes to mind GW, *hinthint*) it keeps people from developing feelings that their army is being neglected or unloved.
2. Specialist Games
BRING SPECIALIST GAMES BACK!Sorry, I had to get that out there. Bring back Epic and BFG (in new scales to encourage players to get the new models instead of just sit on their old ones so the games actually see support) to start with then branch out into Mordhiem and maybe even Necromunda (in the case of the last two make sure to heavily lean on having players convert models out of the existing ones when possible. It allows players to more greatly personalize their warbands and reduces the burden to provide model ranges for the game).
And then once that happens introduce a new game now and then. Sell Fantasy Flight's board games through your site. Have them recreate Space Hulk and Warhammer Quest.
And then don't make them limited releases. The company is called GAMES Workshop and we want to really support that name. Without more kinds of games (even if they're small ones) there just isn't enough incentive to really push us to want to spend as much money. Plus these kinds of games would really work well at...
1. Games DayYes, Games Day. It doesn't need to just be about long lines to buy stuff. Run small Specialist Games there, host Kill Teams events, tease us with previews of things you have coming out like Forge World does. Make us want to be there, and fill the halls with people who are excited to be there. The events have been lacking and a lot of it has to do with the lack of interactive stuff to do. Even if all that you do is give us some tables and some terrain and tell us to bring our own Mordheim warbands or Kill Teams we'll do it. You can even use those as publicity for the next year's events. Give us a reason to want to be there other than a sense of habit and you'll find yourself making money hand over fist at these events AND customers leaving happy.
In ClosingNow my list is hardly complete. There are so many other things that can be on here (like selling GW related merchandise like t-shirts, mugs and caps) and I'm interested in hearing what other people would put in their top 10 instead.
But this is my wish list, and I hope that maybe, someday, that at least some of it happens. I'm not holding my breath, but I still wish it to be true...someday.