Wednesday, 9 March 2016

You could take me to Hull and back...

After what has seemed like an age of uninterrupted work, last week saw some time off and a bit of a road trip to Hull to see the better half's sister. Just prior to the trip, we went to see Deadpool at the cinema and enjoyed it immensely we did. Fast paced, hilariously funny and tonally spot on, it is the perfect counter to the increasingly serious Marvel and DC movie universes. Give the trailer a shot as it's a blast.

Anyway, the trip to Hull. It is not, as some people think, a crappy place. True, it has both good and bad, but then all places do, and it suits a couple of days to see the what the place has to offer. Apart from the usual retail haunts (and a CEX store that doesn't stink of b/o and pee!), it also has a Games Workshop store. As I was passing, I thought I would have a look in.

Wow!!! Why the wow? Why the three exclamation marks?

Well, it was busy, and surprisingly not just with the expected hordes of teenagers. Nope there was a goodly mix of twenty-somethings, worried looking parents buying the teenagers their toys, other halves standing in bemusement at said toys, and your humble scribe. (My better half was perusing a shop further down the street). What did make me go "wow!" at first was the general stock of the shop. Reasonably well laid out, sections on rulesets, figures, starter kits, vehicles, books etc. Nice to see and not what I had expected, although that could be down to me seeing GW fans at wargames shows and projecting that image to the company. The second "wow!!" came from the book section alone. I knew there was an expanded universe out there but seriously, how many books??? I presume they must sell (and keep Dan Abnett in tea and biscuits), but I wasn't expecting the full on media expansion of the lore. It made me wonder how much GW are focussing on everything other than the gaming systems that I thought was there bread and butter.

The final "wow!!!" kind of answered that for me. I saw one figure, looked like grey resin, maybe an inch tall (I profess to not know the details), in a neat little blister pack. Nice piece of work, until I saw the price. £15!!! For one figure!!! Jesus indeed was sobbing gently into his handkerchief.

Now I admit, I have not played any GW games since the 1980's but I can't quite comprehend how people can justify charging (and paying) that much for one figure. Not when you can buy Perry plastics at shows for £20 per pack for 36 figures, or Old Glory 25mm for £24 for 30 figures. The former are plastic, the latter metal, but either way, much better value than £15 for one! Do GW need the book sales to cover the low sales of actual gaming goods? I am not sure, but it's a thought. And yes, I am aware of the idea of expanding market presence and diversifying your income, but at those prices, no wonder the parents looked terrified...

I didn't loiter for long, and after the aforementioned two days, we left Hull behind and returned to the bright lights of County Durham.

Thankfully, now I am back home, I can get round to sorting out my plan of action for this Saturday as it's a TWATS meeting and I am in charge. Mwah-ha-ha-ha!!! If I had whskers of a certain length, I would be twirling them right now. It'll be a modern, not-quite-Iraq themed game, but on a smaller scale than previous games, and with a few umpire introduced amendments to the proceedings. There shall, without doubt, a report or two and pictures.

The weekend after that will be filled with the joys of Sheffield, where the Triples show is being held in it's new timeslot. I admit that I am looking forward to the show, it has a good number of traders, games and the facilities are of the better sort for a show. There is also the Lord Nelson pub, just round the corner from the hotel. That is always a nice sight for sore eyes on a Friday and Saturday evening.

After that, well, hopefully some more blog posts, more music reviews for the other blog I write for and maybe, just maybe, a couple of cinema trips too. Well, one can but hope...


  1. I was aware of the GW "Black Library" as I have a relative who reviews their books. - There are Zillions. I've tried to read a few but never made it past halfway as they are very samey at least the ones I was lent. I found one or two quite nasty sort of slasher novel with sci-fi added but without any characters- fine if you are 13.
    As for figure pricing they are not alone- see Hasslefree Miniatures for example- who are not the worst. Sci-Fant has always been far more aggressively priced than Historical stuff ever since it appeared in the 1970s but the gap has widened.
    Oh and FYI- due to our splendid government and the EU referendum farce OG 25mm have gone up to £25.00 a bag

  2. I get your point, but those prices are eye gouging for one figure! Mind you, the Daily Mail will be getting a letter about your extortionate price rises too!!! :-)

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