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Peeved at GW


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Pewter, white metal, whatever it is... is it available to the general public? I'm about ready to sculpt and cast my own proxies, to Hades with their official ripoff nonsense. Yes: Hades... I'm that incensed.

 

I'm wondering about the wholesale cost per ounce / gram.

 

Their Obliterator model is $25, which is about the same size as a Reaper troll, which is about $6. Incidentally, I bought 4 Undead Trolls by Ben Seins and would do the same with oblits if they were not so expensive. I'll buy some more UTs and modify them to be oblits. That'll teach 'em!

 

And what they did to the Squats proves they have no soul.

 

The employee discount at a game store chain in Chicago is 45%, so their profit margin must be at least that.

 

 

 

P.S. My google produced a list of jewelry, any ideas to refine my search term to get it wholesale (or retail)?

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The cost of Tin is going up - but with GW you are paying for 1) The branding. It's like paying top dollar for a pair of Nikes when you can get some Chucks for much less. (Remember whe chucks used to be $5 a pair and they came in plaid?) and 2) You are going to pay more for more powerful troops and elites because you don't need as many in a game, so they won't sell as many and it's a way to "justify" the cost of the model. For example - how many Chapter Masters is a space marine army going to need, vs how many Tactical Troops?

 

Just to be fair - the cost of Reaper models are sometimes more than individual GW rank and file (both metal, and definately the plastics) - however! Command figures are going to cost just as much as a grunt is going to cost - it's more or less $4.50-$5.00 across the board - and an army is going to cost significantly less than a GW army - both because you need less troops and there isn't such a gap between the cost of troops vs characters.

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GW is like most businesses: charging what the market will bear. Until more people start abandoning the various GW games *AND* cite the high costs of the minis as the reason, GW will continue to charge more for more powerful models. Why shouldn't they if it works?

 

Note that lots of businesses charge more things than the raw material costs. For example, the raw material costs of designer clothes or even Coca Cola (especially in a restaurant or a movie theater) are miniscule compared to the price paid by the consumer.

 

Ron

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You used to be able to get a tour of the GW US casting/packaging facilities, though I don't know if that is still the case since they moved the lines out of Baltimore to the new warehouse.

 

I said this in the 40k thread over in general SCi-Fi as well. GW sells it's models for the prices at which they feel they can maintain reasonable sales growth. There's obviously no shortage of buyers. The fact that they're a publically traded company also gives them a lot less leeway on how they consider a model to be profitable.

 

The example given was for a reaper troll vs. a GW Obliterator. Size-wise they're comparable, but frankly that's where the comparisons end.

 

The trolls are, in general, a two or three part model. So the labor required to produce a batch, considering one part per mould, is 2x-3x the labor to produce a batch of single-piece models.

 

An obliterator is seven pieces. Head, two arms, body/legs, torso front, and 2 sprues of weapons with a total of 15 optons to attach to the arms of your model.

 

And at $22 they're worth every penny. Great looking models with great stats for the game.

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Note that lots of businesses charge more things than the raw material costs.

Ron

 

This is very true. GW just does it to the extreme end of insanity though. The price of tin may be on the rise but that is no excuse to charge $45.00 for a single PLASTIC giant or $60.00 for a PLASTIC Balrog. If people will still buy them then I guess GW isn't so crazy after all.

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I like capitalism and acknowledge their right to set prices and their duty to maximize shareholder wealth. Aggressive marketing to an impulsive audience of "complete-ist" collectors and approval-hungry kids is a moral issue akin to advertising beer at AA meetings, but that analogy leads off topic so let's skip that.

 

Undead Troll weighs 3/4oz on my imprecise kitchen scale, so I estimate the obliterator is 1.5 oz. Casting metal type r is about a buck per ounce retail, no idea what wholesale discount would be, how about $0.50 per oz? So the intrinsic value of the oblit is $0.75. That's a gross profit margin of 97% when people buy from them directly. I wonder what they charge distributors?

 

There's a lot of expenses to consider before reaching the net profit margin, and I guess marketing and R&D would be the largest. I have no idea what those numbers look like but starting out at 97% makes you wonder how they post losses. Ok maybe not all minis have a 97% gross. Think it's higher on plastics?

 

Sometimes companies fiddle with the books to post losses in good years (DoW!) to avoid taxes and I have no idea about corporate taxes in England.

 

In summary: My Iron Warriors can have up to 9 oblits according to the 4th edition rules and I don't want to spend all that money.

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There's a very simple solution to this problem.

 

Don't buy GW stuff if you are not happy with their pricing, even if you like the models.

 

I love Reaper, but if my Warlord figures suddenly started costing $15 per Captain with no significant difference in size, complexity, etc, they would stop receiving my money in short order unless there was a sudden industry wide shift in prices. Even then, they would not likely get so much of my money because I couldn't afford it.

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The example given was for a reaper troll vs. a GW Obliterator. Size-wise they're comparable, but frankly that's where the comparisons end.

 

The trolls are, in general, a two or three part model. So the labor required to produce a batch, considering one part per mould, is 2x-3x the labor to produce a batch of single-piece models.

 

An obliterator is seven pieces. Head, two arms, body/legs, torso front, and 2 sprues of weapons with a total of 15 optons to attach to the arms of your model.

 

Perhaps someone just chose a poor example. I'd rather compare something like their new Wood Elves line. I purchased several of the models (I'm not a GW fan, but I like a model from time to time) from the line that would be considered leaders or elites in WL terms. Every single one was $12. Every single one was less than 3 pieces, maximum, and in all cases the pieces were only a single sprue. They had no more metal or parts than an average 28mm DHL or WL figure that I would pay only $4.50-5.00.

 

Tell me again how they aren't ripping people off?

 

Qwyk is right; the only solution is to not support the company; for the grand total of 8 GW figures that I've *ever* purchased from them, I don't exactly consider myself a supporter... but I did buy them, so I'm part of the problem too, even if only in a small way. ::(:

 

~v

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My GW opinion swings up and down quite often. Sometimes I absolutely dispise the company and play one of my myriad assort. of other games for a while. Other times I just shut up and play their stupid games. Mostly just because that's what everyone here plays, and my luck with trying to get people to play Warlord/CAV just doesn't seem existant.

 

I think my longest-running "anti-GW" kick was after the realization that a plastic box of terminators (5 included) cost the same as buying 5 metal terminators ($50).

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There's always Ebay, as well...

 

Looking over my GW collections (Dwarfs, High Elfs, Eldar), the cost of rank-and-file troops almost always outrstrips the costs of character models, by a wide margin. And how may character models will your army have? My dwarfs, FREX, had around 2 (not counting commands, which I don't consider in this). 40K is worse, but even then the only character models (sans command) I have is the Farseer and his retenue.

 

Buying on Ebay means a lot of these models were much cheaper than buying full retail.

 

Damon.

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What's really bad is that thier prices are so high that all three stores in this area closed up, and none of the other game stores want to deal with thier balony to carry any of thier stuff, so they lost all the charlotte area business. Any game store that did have thier line marked it all way down just to get rid of it, the faster the better...

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Perhaps someone just chose a poor example. I'd rather compare something like their new Wood Elves line. I purchased several of the models (I'm not a GW fan, but I like a model from time to time) from the line that would be considered leaders or elites in WL terms. Every single one was $12. Every single one was less than 3 pieces, maximum, and in all cases the pieces were only a single sprue. They had no more metal or parts than an average 28mm DHL or WL figure that I would pay only $4.50-5.00.

 

Tell me again how they aren't ripping people off?

 

No, it's still not a rip off. If the people are willing to pay the specified price for the perceived value of something entirely optional and voluntary, it's not a rip off. You are willing to pay the price because your perceived value of the minis outweighs the value you assigned to the $12 per figure that you spent (and you have a choice about whether or not to buy the minis).

 

With GW, you're also not just paying for the mini, sculpting costs, and packaging. You're helping to pay for all of the overhead that comes with GW products (website, fluff, marketing) and the GW stores themselves (even if you didn't buy it at a GW store).

 

Until enough people change their buying behavior enough to materially influence GW's bottom line (and GW management is smart enough to see why people are not spending as much money with them), GW is not going to change its prices.

 

I don't like GW's games or business practices as a general rule, but as long as people are willing to pay the prices, I don't think that they're ripping people off either.

 

Ron

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