This is going to seem like a bit of an odd one, especially given my recent article praising Maelstrom Games, but bear with me.  When I buy Games Workshop stuff I buy it from my local Games Workshop despite having to miss out on at least fifteen percent discount from the independent retailers.  Buying my haul of Necrons this last weekend means that this meant I missed out on about two "free" units I could have had.  Consumers act in their best interests, so why did I do this?

I Support Their Business Model
There, I said it.  Man, that's a tough one to get off your chest.  I might go and have a lie down for a bit.

In seriousness, I really value having a local Games Workshop store.  I love that I can pop in, chat to the Store Manager for hours, grab an impulse purchase or a random pot of paint.  So many times I've realised a paint had run out or I needed just one more model and being able to run down to the GW and get them without hassle is worth a lot to me.  As such, I don't mind paying the "store tax" of their RRP price-tags.

Store Managers are the Heart of Games Workshop
My local Store Manager is a great guy.  He's enthusiastic about the hobby, knowledgeable about the other games out there (though he has to sport the company line, of course) and seems to genuinely want to be helpful.  He's offered me plenty of help, and I often see him handing out good advice to the younger gamers.  This is the image of the company I like to see spread - helpful, friendly staff that provide the anchor point to the hobby.  A lot of the staff aren't so good, or are so blatant in their company line that you feel like you're talking to a GW-programmed robot, but when they are good they are great for the hobby as a whole.  I know he's being paid for it, but if I could I'd waste so much time just hanging around the local store talking to the manager.

This is the kind of staffer that got me into this.  Sure, my friends introduced me to the little toy soldiers you have to paint yourself, but it was the staff that drew me in, showed me new games and how to play, offered advice that I couldn't go online to find (this was many years ago before the advent of the great Internets and also back when White Dwarf was worth reading).  I compare the service I get from him to some of the local independents I've had to deal with and it's obvious whose sales I'd rather be boosting.

The Bottom Line
Is this:  I value the store and the staff Games Workshop provide for me.  I often hear people tell me that prices are high because they maintain all these stores, that they should do without and lower prices.  I think not.  I happily pay RRP for their product, and I'm happy to have the stores available to me in return.  The prices aren't even bad compared to other games either (Nomad Uberfallkommando unit is £20 for four true-scale metal models, Necron Immortals box is £20.50 for five heroic-scale plastic models with a complete second set of options for all of them and alternate weapon loadouts for all of them).  So while I know I pay a few percent for those local hobby stores, I pay it gladly. Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...