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Subject: Local store changing to a membership only model "ie Costco" rss

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Well this is an interesting development from Myriad Games (owned by the same person as "Game Salute".

Not showing a price list and what's available makes it really hard to understand if this is a good deal in anyway.

Email from Nov 29th wrote:
Myriad Games is Moving and Introducing Tabletop Direct!


Myriad Games is moving from 1525 South Willow Street, Manchester, NH to our new warehouse-direct location at 34 Londonderry Road, Londonderry, NH (conveniently located just minutes off Exit 4 of I-93).

At the same time we will be launching a new service, Tabletop Direct. As a Tabletop Direct member, you can get all your games at warehouse-direct prices (lower than online stores!).

When?

We will be operating at our current Manchester location until just after Christmas this year. We will continue to get new releases and restocks of core titles from now through the week before Christmas. We will be open for a few days after Christmas (December 26th, 27th, and 28th) for our final clearance sales at the 1525 South Willow St. location. We will then be closed between December 29th and January 8th for our move to 34 Londonderry Rd. We will be reopening at our new warehouse-direct location on January 9th, 2017.


What’s New?

To bring our members the best warehouse-direct prices on tabletop games, our new location will not focus on stocking games like a traditional retail outlet. Instead we’ll be focusing on our new service, Tabletop Direct. This allows you to purchase games at warehouse-direct prices (the lowest in the industry - lower than online stores!). This will be a members-only program, with annual membership for just $49 per year (you can take advantage of a free trial for one month at no cost).

We will have pre-played titles in stock and open copies of select games to show off along with in-warehouse-only clearance deals for members. When you want to order new games and accessories, you simply request the item(s) you'd like, we check availability, collect payment, and order from our nationwide network of distributor warehouses.


Who?

Who will be working at the new location? All our existing staff will have the opportunity to continue working at our new headquarters location in Londonderry.


Why?

While we’ve enjoyed our years at 1525 South Willow St., the costs associated with maintaining the location have grown out of proportion with local sales.


We’ve been in the tabletop games industry since 1996 and operating Myriad Games since 1999. Over the past 20 years, we’ve done everything from direct-to-consumer online sales to local sales and events to convention sales to wholesale. We’ve seen the significant increase in direct-to-consumer sales and shipments, the long-term impact on pricing requirements from the Great Recession, and the evolution of direct-to-consumer sales from publishers via platforms like Amazon and Kickstarter. Working through our publishing and distribution divisions over the past 5 years, we are very familiar with those aspects and how the market is changing. As the market develops we must evolve with it, and our solution is to get you the best prices anywhere.


How?

You can request your order in person, by email, by text, by phone, by Skype, by Facebook message, or by Twitter direct message.

We'll let you know your current Tabletop Direct member price for each title and if it's presently available. Once you approve the purchase, we’ll charge your card on file. All orders must be pre-paid to get our special member pricing. Items that are in-print from the manufacturer and available for us to order through our network of warehouses are typically available for pickup in about a week from when you place your order. For future releases, when you preorder and prepay, you reserve your copy. New releases that you’ve preordered are available immediately when they arrive at our facility for you to pick up. For all your orders, once your games arrive, we keep them safe and sound for you until you're ready to pick them up. We’ll be announcing our new hours for our 34 Londonderry Rd location on MyriadGames.com and through our email newsletter, so stay tuned.

I’m In!

You can sign up for your first month free to try it out as of December 12th. Any new members who enroll in 2016 will get some bonus extra time on your first year’s membership and will have their renewal date set to January 3rd, 2018. After that, you can sign up or renew anytime and your membership renewal date will be on your membership anniversary.

Tabletop Direct prices are not available to non-members but remember that you can sign up for a free trial anytime to try out the service and see the savings you can receive with your membership.

From now through December 24th, you'll be able to pick up your games at our existing retail location at 1525 South Willow Street in Manchester.

As of January 9th, you will be able to pick up your games at our member pickup location at 34 Londonderry Road, Londonderry, NH, conveniently located just off Exit 4 from I-93.


Thank You Kindly

Thank you to all of our awesome customers. It has been exciting seeing the tabletop games industry evolve over the past 20 years and we are excited about the next 20 years and what the future brings!

We look forward to continuing to serve you and help bring more and more tabletop games to tables all over the region at Tabletop Direct prices in the new year.
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The Game Steward
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I'll be very interested to hear how this works out.
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Eric Francis
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Yes. Very interesting, and if it's done right it could be effective. I wonder, though, if they will have the demand they need locally to succeed, or the marketing reach to get a critical mass of subscribers regionally or nationally.
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Brian Jurney
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Discounts from distributors are typically 40%-50% MSRP off with tiers. If you reach a new tier in a quarter, the higher the discount will be, so this is a great deal. Im not sure the benefit to the company is though. $49 a year for what seems like lots of work hardly seems worth it. Maybe being able to get the games at the lower discount and selling at a higher profit to non-members is where he will make up for it.
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Paul Sauberer
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Kind of a condensed version of their Kickstarter business. Pay them up front and get product later. If their one week wait starts to slip and be like their Kickstarters that wouldn't be good.
 
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squirrelhenge wrote:
Yes. Very interesting, and if it's done right it could be effective. I wonder, though, if they will have the demand they need locally to succeed, or the marketing reach to get a critical mass of subscribers regionally or nationally.


And will they get cut off by distributors, and/or treated as a non brick and mortar store by Asmodee/etc?

The issue for me is they are going to have to beat online pricing by a pretty far amount to off set the membership fee. If they only beat online by 10% then you have to buy $490 of stuff in a year to off set the membership.
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jurney85 wrote:
Discounts from distributors are typically 40%-50% MSRP off with tiers. If you reach a new tier in a quarter, the higher the discount will be, so this is a great deal. Im not sure the benefit to the company is though. $49 a year for what seems like lots of work hardly seems worth it. Maybe being able to get the games at the lower discount and selling at a higher profit to non-members is where he will make up for it.


I believe they are moving to a current "Game Salute" warehouse location so the overhead for this I'm guessing is really low, just space in a warehouse/office area they are already renting. You appear to have to prepay for everything, so there is no real cash flow cost. If like costco the membership fees pay any overhead, then any market up is all profit.

The devils in the details which aren't covered in the email (what are they really going to have that they can order, at what price, and how quickly does it come in).

If they are at 40% off for Asmodee/FFG/etc (around 10-25% off online now) stuff they may be able to undercut online stores enough to make the $49 break even but you are still going to have to be buying a fair amount of expensive games (using $99 FFG games as a base and current pricing for Mansions of Madness ($85 at MM) so $59.4 if 40% off) you're looking at 2 $99 MSRP games a year to break ~ even.
 
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Duncan Idaho
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Interesting. I like the innovation. Very interested to see how this plays out.
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Ryan Manes
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Skyguard wrote:
If they only beat online by 10% then you have to buy $490 of stuff in a year to off set the membership.


Challenge accepted.
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Kevin Eastwood
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I wonder if this change has anything to do with the pending lawsuits with the owner?

Oh, and the last 3 times I popped in there the inventory selection was poor, and the "ordering" process was pointless as other stores had the games in stock - which is yet another reason their sales couldn't support the location they had. Just sayin'

https://www.boardgamegeek.com/blogpost/58863/yarrington-resp...
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Hedyn Brand
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rmanes wrote:
Skyguard wrote:
If they only beat online by 10% then you have to buy $490 of stuff in a year to off set the membership.


Challenge accepted.

The challenge is to keep it under, right?

You're spoiled for choice over there - we're lucky to live near even one gaming store. This will be an interesting experiment to follow - people here copy everything American/British, so one could hope for this too.
 
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Tony C
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Interesting indeed. Seems to me gaming is still niche enough that a membership model either won't get enough customers to make money, or will have to charge a crazy rate.

$49 a year isn't bad, but unless the "warehouse" prices are quite good, it does seem like it adds inconvenience and customer "stickiness" versus just ordering online and having the choice of vendors. And some "buffet" style programs end up losing money overall due to a small proportion of their customer base taking major advantage of the program.
Maybe the multiple order channels is actually a convenience - see an ad for a cool game on Facebook? Instantly FB message TTD instead of hunting for the game on webstores.

That said, good luck to them, I'm all for innovative business models.
 
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Keith B
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No shipping option?
 
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Eric Francis
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I've got to think there will be, if they hope to build a big enough customer base to stay open. I visit southern NH regularly and it's a lovely place, but there's not nearly the population to support this operation as local-only.
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Skyguard
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squirrelhenge wrote:
I visit southern NH regularly and it's a lovely place, but there's not nearly the population to support this operation as local-only.


Have you been lately? I wasn't a big fan of them removing all the play space at the start of the year. And stock was very very low when I was last in the summer, its hard to support a store that doesn't have anything to buy. They had stocking problems since two Christmas ago as I recall.

 
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Eric Francis
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Skyguard wrote:
squirrelhenge wrote:
I visit southern NH regularly and it's a lovely place, but there's not nearly the population to support this operation as local-only.


Have you been lately? I wasn't a big fan of them removing all the play space at the start of the year? And stock was very very low when I was last in the summer, its hard to support a store that doesn't have anything to buy. They had stocking problems since two Christmas ago as I recall.


Aha! I haven't been lately enough, clearly! Wasn't aware of this development. Thanks for the update.
 
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Marty Sample
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Until the lawsuit with Zev settles, I think I'd be nervous paying $49 that might get swallowed up a la UP FRONT should judgement go against them.
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Brian Baird
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Marty S wrote:
Until the lawsuit with Zev settles, I think I'd be nervous paying $49 that might get swallowed up a la UP FRONT should judgement go against them.


Yes, but what does THIS mean for Up Front?
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Skyguard
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So has anybody in NH area signed up for this and want to give a review?
 
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I don't even quite understand this email. It states that if you sign up in 2016 (which is on or after December 12th 2016) you get "some bonus extra time" and your renewal date is January 3rd 2018.

Wouldn't the absolute first date of renewal for anyone participating in this program be on January 13 2018, after 12 months of paid subscription and a free bonus month?

It's that kind of bad math that just makes it hard to believe the other claims like "lowest prices in the industry". I look forward to hearing someone review the program with some actual real price examples.
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I'm thinking about stopping by the store close out on Monday, I will let you all know if I do what I can find out on pricing and what you can buy.
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Jim McMahon
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RobertDD wrote:
Wouldn't the absolute first date of renewal for anyone participating in this program be on January 13 2018, after 12 months of paid subscription and a free bonus month?
I never got the impression that the free month was an additional month added on to the full year.
 
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Craig Michaud
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So I stopped by on Monday. I inquired about the prices and how it all worked. According to the employee, we can purchase the game for the distributor cost + 10%, but the 10% maxes out at $5.

For examples, I was quoted $23 for Cash N Guns and $55 for Super Dungeon Explore Forgotten King. They were $34 and $69 on CSI, so those savings on 2 games I am definitely buying digs into the $49 for the year pretty well already. I will probably be paying the membership after my free month, which I'm going to start when I place my first order.
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Craiglestyx wrote:
So I stopped by on Monday. I inquired about the prices and how it all worked. According to the employee, we can purchase the game for the distributor cost + 10%, but the 10% maxes out at $5.

For examples, I was quoted $23 for Cash N Guns and $55 for Super Dungeon Explore Forgotten King. They were $34 and $69 on CSI, so those savings on 2 games I am definitely buying digs into the $49 for the year pretty well already. I will probably be paying the membership after my free month, which I'm going to start when I place my first order.


Interesting. Here's my take: they realize that OLGS are eating their lunch from people who buy lots of games in a year (most FLGS sales are to people who buy a couple items a year). So they've found a way to (theoretically anyway) get the local populace to stop buying online and buy from them. At very low margins, but it's a guaranteed sale, no inventory costs, and they have the $50 up-front.

My guess is that the only people who will pay for this are people who would've done almost all their buying online anyway, so this is probably win-win for them, as long as the new location gets "normal" traffic from the typical FLGS customer who only drops in from time to time and only buys 1 or 2 things a year.
 
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Riley Doyle
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My guess is that the only people who will pay for this are people who would've done almost all their buying online anyway, so this is probably win-win for them, as long as the new location gets "normal" traffic from the typical FLGS customer who only drops in from time to time and only buys 1 or 2 things a year.


The new location is the Ship Naked warehouse. They aren't getting any foot traffic.
 
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