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Subject: What's the final word on the hill giant promo? rss

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Aram
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I pre-ordered my copy of Battlelore from Cardhaus.com last week under the impression that ALL pre-orders were going to include the hill giant promo mini. However, when I E-mailed Cardhaus’s customer service dept. today they informed me that DoW hadn’t informed them whether or not the hill giant would be offered to them. surprise So…Does somebody at Essen want to clarify this with our French compatriots?
 
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Richard Pardoe
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aramd wrote:
I pre-ordered my copy of Battlelore from Cardhaus.com last week under the impression that ALL pre-orders were going to include the hill giant promo mini.

Nope. Only pre-orders directly from your local Retail store (or directly from Days of Wonder) will include the Hill Giant. From their website: (http://tinyurl.com/y3u32p)
Quote:
A Hill Giant is available with any pre-order placed with your local game store or our Online web store

In fact, I was at Endgame (Oakland, CA) last weekend which was accepting pre-orders and had the Hill Giant to be given to all folks who pre-ordered the game. (Days of Wonder was demoing the game also.)

So the choice is yours - save money on the cost of the game and get the game. Support your local retail store, pay a bit more, get the Hill Giant as a token of appreciation.
 
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Dan Blum
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I think Days of Wonder has been pretty clear in saying that only preorders from brick and mortar game stores (i.e., not online dealers) and DoW themselves would get the Hill Giant.
 
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Scott Russell
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I sent DoW a complaining letter, but no response, yet.

My local game store happens to be an online store. It's technically not quite the closest, but since I see someone that lives next to it a couple times a month, it is by far the easiest. (So the online store has a service above and beyond any that I could get from a storefront.)

For any storefront location, I would have to drove ~20 miles each way to pre-order, then to pick up. Unfortunately, none are close to locations that I regularly visit, either, so it would be a special trip both times.

Alternatively, I could order from DoW, but in addition to retail, I'd have to pay shipping on top. So my "free" hill giant figure would cost around $30.

As a result, I protested to DoW outlining why I thought their stand was hypocritical and will not be pre-ordering Battlelore. It has moved from "gotta have it" onto my "try before buy list" and is starting with a negative impression.

I'd even consider sending the difference between retail and what my online store charges to charity (for out of date business concept support or other charity of DoW's choice) in exchange, but I suspect that offer would be rejected. (Love to be proven wrong, though.)


 
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Scott Russell
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BTW, I've been to my online store location and it contains brick and mortar.
 
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Brent Lloyd
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Reedo wrote:
You people don't seem to understand that DoW doesn't owe you anything.


I could'nt agree more. Cheers to DoW for trying to support businesses who support the hobby!

Peace
 
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Aram
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I always feel dirty buying from the big online venders, but as a working college student I really have a hard time covering the extra expense of buying Battle Lore from the local guys. I feel bad now. soblue I guess i'll just buy the forthcoming individual monsters from the shop.
 
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Brian Morris
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Quote:
I always feel dirty buying from the big online venders, but as a working college student I really have a hard time covering the extra expense of buying Battle Lore from the local guys.


I too applaud DoW for supporting the traditional brick & mortar game store with their promotion. I also understand that for some folks their hobby dollar is is spread a bit thinner than others. So I don't begrudge someone on a student's budget from saving a few bucks where they can. I was a starving college student once too.

 
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John Lopez
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I also applaud DoW for supporting the stores that provide the most visible access to the hobby. The suggestion to call your nearest store to make the preorder is quite reasonable: one trip 40 miles? I drive 240 miles from Tucson to Phoenix and back weekly.

They even bothered to make an exception for direct orders, for those who really live in BFE, but it costs a bit more.

Hmmm. I can't find a violin playing emoticon.
 
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Another thought about the local store promo. DoW knows they'll sell to the hardcore gamers, but to really have a hit, they need to sell to the masses. To do that, you need local exposure.

Some guy will come into the store to pick up his preorder and be so excited that he'll break it out right then and set it up in the playing area. If he's there for an hour or so during a weekend, he'll probably sell another 2-3 sets just by being an unintentional live demo. The more people that play locally, the more they'll sell. Once the blisters come out, those that have the base game will be likely to pick them up on impulse when they go to the store to play or browse.

I can't believe how much whining a piece of plastic has caused in a group of adults.
 
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Quote:
What could be better than having a choice?

A pony Hill Giant?
 
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qzhdad wrote:
So my "free" hill giant figure would cost around $30.


Nothing left to think about. That's an easy decision.
 
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Matthew Wills
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I have to say that DoW have done a great job with their promotion of BattleLore.

As others have put it, you get to choose between getting it cheap or supporting your local store and getting the bonus fig. Of course, I'd rather get the bonus fig, and get it cheap - but obviously that defeats the whole purpose of the promotion.

The promotion is a great way to improve visibility of the game among retailers (I contacted about 6 retailers about pre-ordering - about half of them hadn't heard about the game prior). Plus, the fact it involves pre-orders will give DoW an insight into the demand level for the game.

I for one have pre-ordered the game. I've never pre-ordered any other game before. So it worked for me?

 
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Lindsey Dubb
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Of course, this can get a bit confusing — At my last home, Cardhaus.com was my local store. (It does have a real physical store where you can buy things, up in Lynnwood, a little north of Seattle.) I’m sure they sell more over the net than in person, but they’re relatively difficult to categorize.
 
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I've been debating about buying cheap or spending the extra for the promo figure. It's a hard decision though I expect ebay will be flooded with them since some unscrupulous stores will sell them instead of giving them away as part of the presell. Used to happen to Mage Kight promos all the time.

I certainly don't have a problem with them offering it the way they are. Wizkids did the same thing on some of their promo programs. The problem I'm having is finding a store that has even heard of the game. I friend of mine and I have checked with the 3 local gaming stores and none of them know what we were talking about! So seems the only option is to buy direct from the DOW website. I won't buy local if they can't guarantee me the figure. Besides with local tax the direct shipping from Days of Wonder isn't much more so probably safer to buy from them.
 
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The DoW strategy worked for me too, I wanted to buy the game once it would be out for a while, with many reviews, lower price, etc... But when I saw that pre-ordering in Europe included free shipping, the Giant and the Elemental I pre-ordered (well, it was mostly my son who "clicked" on the pre-order button...).

You give something to them (full retail plus knowing now how many games they will have sold already on Nov 30th) and they give you something back (promo figures). Seems quite fair to me!
 
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"Cheers to DoW for trying to support businesses who support the hobby!"

I'm pretty sure I won't be getting BattleLore at all (preorder or regular order) simply because there are other games I'd rather buy, but I have been following the discussions about the game's release. So when I read the quote above, I had to ask- Are you saying online stores DON'T support the gaming hobby?

That would seem a bit ridiculous. Over the past several years online retailers have certainly supported the gaming hobby for my friends and I. I'd be interested in hearing what response if any the person above who wrote the letter to Days of Wonder gets. In support of their complaint I'd say:

1. It's pretty hard to draw a line between "brick and mortar" stores and "etailers". If you've been to ebay lately it seems that pretty much every game shop at least dabbles in a side online business, and many retailers who are predominantly online will also do business face to face. Wherever Days of Wonder decided to draw the line, I can understand why the people on the wrong side of it (with no giant) are not happy.

2. Someone else above said "Days of Wonder doesn't owe you a thing". That's certainly true, but saying "Life's tough, quit your whining!" isn't exactly great customer service. Potential buyers of the game don't owe Days of Wonder or their brick and mortar store anything either. The dominant opinion on BGG seems to be that Days of Wonder is doing this promo out of the kindness of their heart to help out local stores. I don't think that's the case. Someone hit the nail on the head- the promotion is an effort to increase sales by bring NEW people into gaming. Days of Wonder is making a bet that their strategy of "promo minis for brick and mortar only" will bring in more new buyers than the "hardcore" gamers it ticks off and don't buy.

My question is will battlelore find it's way onto the shelves at Walmart, Target, etc? I could see it doing extremely well there considering the success of Heroscape. In any case I can completely understand the annoyance of people who would like the Giant but don't feel it's worth $30.
 
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Andrew Prizzi
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I think you're making the point of the complainers for them: it's just a piece of plastic. My sense is that the gripe isn't about having to pay more to get an additional figure. It's about HOW MUCH more. $30 for one mini....which is just a piece of plastic.

 
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A German online shop ensured me that they'll get the Promo minis and send them to pre-orderers.
 
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prizziap wrote:
"Cheers to DoW for trying to support businesses who support the hobby!"

I'm pretty sure I won't be getting BattleLore at all (preorder or regular order) simply because there are other games I'd rather buy, but I have been following the discussions about the game's release. So when I read the quote above, I had to ask- Are you saying online stores DON'T support the gaming hobby?


Thats correct. In my personal opinion deep discount online retailers only "maintain" the hobby, they do not support it. The do not hold demos, they do not offer games up in their store for customers to try before they buy, etc, etc. My local game store does all that and more.

I will keep this short as there are many forums around here that have already beat to death this subject. It really comes down to personal opinion. You buy from who you want to buy from, I will buy from who I want to buy from, and DoW will give promos to whom ever they want. I was just adding my voice of support for the policy.

Peace
 
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Scott Russell
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I find DoW's stance hypocritical because, the Hill Giant is available online, but only at their online store. That doesn't help storefronts at all. YMMV.

If there was a local store that offered services that I use (public gaming area, knowledgable staff, etc.), I'd be glad to pre-order Battlelore from them. However, there isn't. I've had mixed, mostly poor, success with getting SLGS (semi-local game stores) to accept phone pre-orders unless I have personal connection at the store. (Ironically, if they had an Internet presence, they most likely would accept online orders, but then be ineligible for the promotion.) I'd still be driving 40 miles to pick up the game which is probably close in cost to the shipping from DoW (it wasn't clear on their site how much that would be). So why would I consider ordering from SLGS?

(The point isn't that 40 mile is a long distance, but it is cost to be calculated in this equation, because I don't have other business in the neighborhood of any of those stores, so it would be purely for the Battlelore.) I've driven hundreds of miles to play games, but not to buy them. (At least recently. )

Personally, I disagree with the position that storefronts contribute more to the hobby than online stores, but that argument has been beaten to death without any apparent progress on either side. Some old-fashioned stores do contribute substantially to the hobby (gaming area, knowledgable staff), some don't. Some online stores contribute to the hobby (our local one offers prizes at and will arrange for delivery to local game gatherings, for example), some don't. I suspect that there are some of both types that actually detract from the hobby.

I'd potentially be willing to PAypal the $22 (savings from FLOGS) for Hill Giant to DoW, if that was an option. I seriously think that they should consider charity option. I'd participate if the charity was one that I would support normally (pretty long list).

That's essentially what they are asking for anyway, charity for an outmoded business model. Stuff on shelves at retail price with no other service benefit doesn't seem to be a model that works in any retail business. Can you cite another industry where this model still works? Cars, electronics, most clothing, sports equipment, food, I can't think of another example where there are no special deals, haggling or downright discounting from MSRP. And most of those other industries don't offer a 100% markup from wholesale to retail for the retailer.

It is just a piece of plastic, but that's the primary benefit of many DoW products, isn't it?

And, perhaps it's a character flaw, but I am a completist. If I can't have the whole set, I probably won't have any of it. So since I will be waiting to play the game before buying it probably means that I won't ever purchase it. If the game is any good, the street value of a Hill Giant will be at least $30, unless there is a later reprint.

So, I am not complaining, I am pointing out to DoW one cost of their current promotion. I am one sale that they probably would have made with no or a different special promotion and probably won't now. Hopefully, they will factor that data into future promotional concepts. This concept may succeed sufficiently that those of us turned off by the offer will be insignificant in comparison, but at least they have the data available.
 
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Scott Russell
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Thunder wrote:
Thats correct. In my personal opinion deep discount online retailers only "maintain" the hobby, they do not support it. The do not hold demos, they do not offer games up in their store for customers to try before they buy, etc, etc.



Our friendly local online store provides gift certificates and demo games at local game gatherings.
 
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Scott Russell
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Reedo wrote:

This is rediculous. If you want it, buy it. If you don't, don't.


If you want to read our opinions, read them. If you don't, don't.

Reedo wrote:
Popular opinion aside, DoW is NOT charging $30 for the mini; it comes free with their price.


For the math challenged.
If I order Battlelore from my friendly local online game store, my cost is $58 plus tax.
If I order Battlelore from DoW, I pay $70 + shipping + tax
(yes, I pay sales tax on OOS purchases. You are free to affix your signature to a fraudulent document [tax retrun], but I don't choose to do so.) If I do the second method, they throw in a figure.

Your argument that the Hill Giant is free is flawed. It's like a fast food place saying that if you come in to order your food a happy meal is $4 and it comes with a free drink, but if you go to the drivethrough the meal is $3, but you don't get a drink. So does the drink cost you a $1 (plus the inconvenience of parking and waiting in line) or not?

 
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Scott Russell
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Quote:
1. The practice of professing beliefs, feelings, or virtues that one does not hold or possess; falseness.


So I guess technically they are encouraging hypocrisy in others.

They are evidently saying buying from storefronts is a good thing. So they are willing to reward people who do so with a bonus.

But if people would rather avoid storefronts, then they will facilitate that urge by providing the same bonus, but only at their online venue.

If storefronts were important, they wouldn't offer the same deal online.

Seems hypocritical to me. Your failure to see it is beyond my control.

 
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Andrew Prizzi
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"This is rediculous. If you want it, buy it. If you don't, don't. Popular opinion aside, DoW is NOT charging $30 for the mini; it comes free with their price. Just b/c OTHER companies choose to dramatically undersell the product has absolutely nothing to do with DoW. If anything, you are holding DoW responsible for the business practices of others. How much sense does that make?"


I think it makes perfect sense. Thoughhammer, Funagain, GamesSurplus, etc aren't conjuring up copies of BattleLore out of thin air. They're buying them from Days of Wonder then turning around to sell them to the consumer. So it's easy to see that Days of Wonder can sell the games to the etailers at a price that still makes them a profit. Bottom line, the cost of the hill giant to the consumer is whatever the difference is between the cheapest they can get the game WITHOUT giant and the cheapest they can get the game WITH giant.

The whole B&M vs. online dimension to this is really a secondary issue. The heart of the matter is some people are complaining the giant is overpriced. Period. It's a question of worth.

Lost Cities is a great game. Would I buy it for $50? Heck no! It's not worth that much to me.

The effective cost of the giant to people seems to fall somwhere between $20-$30ish depending on what kind of discount a B&M store will give you. So people need to decide if the giant is worth that much to me. When $20-$30ish will get you a lot of other good games, I don't see it as a ridiculous notion to say it's too much to pay for one unpainted plastic mini for a game you've never played before.

I'm all for the free market. If Days of Wonder can sell hill giants for $80 and people will buy them, power to them. This is how supply and demand works. BGG is great to get feedback on games- good and bad. Saying a game (or game component) is overpriced is a legitimate gripe in my book.

PS I tried out Domaine before I bought it online- without any kind of retailer involved!
 
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