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Bones are gateway miniatures


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I just got my first Bones minis at ReaperCon.  I tend not to buy things unless I get to see them in person first.

 

I see them as great experimental material.  I can experiment with color and technique and composition -- and after (well, when...) I screw it up, I don't feel like I've wasted a mini.

 

I have two out now I got at the Con and am ready to cut the bases off.  Again, if I mess it up, I don't feel like I've dumped $8-$12.

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Frankly I think Bones are a little over priced in retail, they should in reality be even cheaper. In the KS they are a great deal for sure, but $2+ a pop is still kinda steep.

 

Of course, Reaper only grosses 50-60% of retail I would expect, so to go any lower on the retail and you have some stock/shelf space and cash flow issues. Having them priced around a pack of MTG cards is probably the correct price point. I would love to see mega packs offered at a bit of a discount. Orc/Gnoll/Bugbear etcs pack at 25% off (then another 25% from online discounters) would be a smooth idea.

 

Cheers

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Frankly I think Bones are a little over priced in retail, they should in reality be even cheaper. In the KS they are a great deal for sure, but $2+ a pop is still kinda steep. Of course, Reaper only grosses 50-60% of retail I would expect, so to go any lower on the retail and you have some stock/shelf space and cash flow issues. Having them priced around a pack of MTG cards is probably the correct price point. I would love to see mega packs offered at a bit of a discount. Orc/Gnoll/Bugbear etcs pack at 25% off (then another 25% from online discounters) would be a smooth idea. Cheers

 

  I'd love to know what you're basing that on.  

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Just guesses really, normal LFGS/publishing model is ~50% return of retail to the publisher/producer (there are many many factors involved, and I do not know actual Reaper's arrangement, so there could be a wide range of 40%-60% or possibly even higher). I do know that online discount mini vendors have prices of up to 26% off retail, and at such a deep discount they need at least a bit of profit to keep the lights on.

 

As to Bones being too expensive at $2, well they are just potentially mass produced plastic and the molds are already pretty much paid for via the KS (yes there are lots of overhead factors as well).  So there is room for Reaper to do mega packs at a discount (even 50% off retail), but this may not really be in their interest as it could canibalize their singles sales.  It is actually worth a test run, there is no reason ebay vendors should be enjoying extra profit off Reapers backs.  Maybe this could be saved for the periods between KS to inject some extra cash.

 

Reaper dudes are pretty smart though, I am sure they have thought all this though.

 

*Jus to be clear, I am not saying Reaper is ripping anyone off.  They should charge as much as they can get away with!

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Reaper has offered a bit of a discount on larger packs of minis in metal, for instance in the Warlord line.  They've also had DHL army packs and boxed sets of related figures now sold in plastic boxes.  So putting a larger number of Bones together for a discount is a reasonable idea, I think.  Once they stop doing Kickstarters (will they ever stop?), that could be a nice future offering for those who like to buy a lot of Bones all at once.

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I agree that they are definitely a gateway drug or a reentry into the hobby, whether you paint or not.  One thing I don't think anyone saw happening to this extent is the rapid upswing of children getting started early.  While this has been huge for adults wanting to be able to have minis for their own tabletop games, I can't tell you how many times I've talked to people who are now letting their children paint and/or pick their own minis for gaming.  Even at full retail, they're cheap enough I don't mind letting my 6 year old throw paint at them, and of course for me and most here we got them for far less via Kickstarter.  I think the youngest painter whose parent has posted things here was three.  THREE!  No way anyone's giving a 3 year old a metal mini.  Not even us crazies.

 

I had a great conversation with Izzy while looking through her sketch book.  She had a kid adventurer and I was telling her about my husband as well as a co-worker who have all kid's games going.  She said they should do a line of minis that are younger adventurers, which I was really enthusiastic about.  She was speaking to one of the sculptors, so I hope this was more than an off the cuff "wouldn't that be cool" and is something that actually happens.

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Bones weren't my gateway back into painting.  That happened a year earlier than the first kickstarter. 

 

But Bones helped me to relax about my painting and stress out less on the small details.  "There's always another one in that big box over there."  Which has helped me to enjoy it more and make it more fun, like it should be.

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I had a great conversation with Izzy while looking through her sketch book.  She had a kid adventurer and I was telling her about my husband as well as a co-worker who have all kid's games going.  She said they should do a line of minis that are younger adventurers, which I was really enthusiastic about.  She was speaking to one of the sculptors, so I hope this was more than an off the cuff "wouldn't that be cool" and is something that actually happens.

 

Wow, that is a cool idea.  It might be worthwhile to do a small set of big head kids in the next KS.  Even if all fails, they could pass for halfling/gnomes.  Gotta have an Ice Princess!

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She said they should do a line of minis that are younger adventurers, which I was really enthusiastic about.  She was speaking to one of the sculptors, so I hope this was more than an off the cuff "wouldn't that be cool" and is something that actually happens.

 

Aren't those called Mouselings?

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As to Bones being too expensive at $2, well they are just potentially mass produced plastic and the molds are already pretty much paid for via the KS (yes there are lots of overhead factors as well).  So there is room for Reaper to do mega packs at a discount (even 50% off retail), but this may not really be in their interest as it could canibalize their singles sales.  It is actually worth a test run, there is no reason ebay vendors should be enjoying extra profit off Reapers backs.  Maybe this could be saved for the periods between KS to inject some extra cash.

True, Bones can be mass produced, but they aren't mass produced at that large a scale.

 

Now if the only Bones around were the original 30 from before KS, then yes I would expect them at a lower cost if they kept producing them and only them. But Reaper is producing thousands, not millions, of any particular model. The only ones that are relatively cheap are the more generic horde/minion monsters like skeletons and zombies that do get produced and sold in larger quantities.

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The Learn to Paint Kits *REALLY* helped. 

 

* Good value for paints and metal miniatures.

* You didn't have to research and guess which paints to buy to paint the miniatures.

* You got the *exact* instructions to paint a miniature.

* Instructions were modular.

* The paints made a great "starter set" and good introduction to triads.

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bones were not my gateway into this habit, that was the lead grenadier stuff back around 80-81.  a few years later it was the Ral Partha battletech and d&D lines.  mageknight has even had its uses as cheap minis   I even liked the relatively cheap prepainted plastic D&D minis.  I'm sure I will spend way too much on bones 3 too.  I've spent way too much on minis over the years.

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While they were not my gateway drug, I have been using them to get others into the the hobby. Bought a bunch of the most popular Bones figures and have been giving them away at the local paint groups. 

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