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Subject: Agricola $29.95 Pre-Order from CLS games! rss

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Ricky Gray
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Check this out...

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geekstore.php3?action=viewitem&...



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Kris J
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Caveman's a really frickin' fun game!

KJ
 
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Hugh G. Rection
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Rompcat wrote:
Caveman's a really frickin' fun game!

KJ


Have you played Valley of the Mammoths? I'm curious how it compares...
 
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Daniel Brown
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My obvious question is which game is better Freya's Folly or Caveman? They seem to both be games that are hard to find here in the states and have very few reviews here on BGG. So anyone out there own both games that can give direction as to which games they like more and why?
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Jeff Michaud
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thanks, not, for the deceptive subject line... when there's a big fine print for it...

Pre-Order Agricola for only >> 29.95 << when you also order either Freya's Folly or Caveman

Z-Man Games [ZMG 7026]
Publisher's estimated release date: April-May 2008

SHIPPING (total for Agricola + Freya's or Caveman)
Continental U.S. - FedEx: $15.95
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Yeah, their shipping is pretty outrageous. Been fooled by their "low" prices before. I steer clear of them now.

He's got a bunch of stuff listed for trade, too, that's not "normal trader" stuff. Kind of annoying.
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Dustin Gervais
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So it's $15.95 shipping
+ $29.95 for Agricola
+ $59.95 for either Caveman or Freya's Folly.

Total: $105.85.

Right?

Might be worth it, might not.
 
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I have ordered from CLS before (through the bgg marketplace where CLS has many, many games listed.) I have to say, in the 'good' column shipping was very fast and the game was very well packaged. But on the downside, he charges an extra fee for using a credit card (or paypal funded by credit card.) And this extra charge is not disclosed until after you have placed the order. Below, the quoted material is from the email I received after I ordered-- needless to say I was annoyed when I received this after I ordered and assumed that the price would be $40.90 and learned that the game would actually cost me $1.60 more for paying with my cc. I think the more upfront way for CLS to do this is to print the actual credit card price in the bgg marketplace and describe the cc pricing policy in the bgg marketplace item description.

Quote:
We accept any of the following four methods of payment:

* PayPal NOT funded by a Credit/Debit Card

* PayPal funded by Credit/Debit Card (add 3.9%)

* Money Order (From U.S. Post Offices Only)

* Cashiers Check drawn from a U.S. Bank or Credit Union


We have two separate PayPal accounts to process [a] Paypal payments funded via Credit/Debit Cards and [b] PayPal not funded via Credit/Debit cards, as follows:

* Non-Credit/Non-Debit card PayPal
CLSGAMES@COMCAST.NET -- $40.90


* Credit/Debit Card PayPal (add 3.9%):
RSOLOW@COMCAST.NET -- $42.50
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Dom L
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tweetlebeetle wrote:
I have to say, in the 'good' column shipping was very fast and the game was very well packaged. But on the downside, he charges an extra fee for using a credit card (or paypal funded by credit card.)


Paypal's User Agreement wrote:
5. No Surcharges. Under Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express regulations and the laws of several states, including California, merchants may not charge a fee to the buyer for accepting credit card payments (often called a "surcharge"). You agree that you will not impose a surcharge or any other fee for accepting PayPal as payment. This restriction does not prevent you from imposing a handling fee in connection with the sale of goods or services, as long as the handling fee does not operate as a surcharge (in other words, the handling fee for transactions paid through PayPal may not be higher than the handling fee for transactions paid through other payment methods).
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rocketkiwi wrote:
tweetlebeetle wrote:
I have to say, in the 'good' column shipping was very fast and the game was very well packaged. But on the downside, he charges an extra fee for using a credit card (or paypal funded by credit card.)


Paypal's User Agreement wrote:
5. No Surcharges. Under Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express regulations and the laws of several states, including California, merchants may not charge a fee to the buyer for accepting credit card payments (often called a "surcharge"). You agree that you will not impose a surcharge or any other fee for accepting PayPal as payment. This restriction does not prevent you from imposing a handling fee in connection with the sale of goods or services, as long as the handling fee does not operate as a surcharge (in other words, the handling fee for transactions paid through PayPal may not be higher than the handling fee for transactions paid through other payment methods).


pwnt!

I just checked out their stuff a little bit ago because someone on Tanga lived near the guy and bought from him without paying shipping. I noticed a few good items and was set to buy, then saw the outrageous shipping fees. When you say he uses a surcharge for credit cards and basically violates the ToA... that is just sad. Just makes me want Dezus to come out even faster!
 
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tweetlebeetle wrote:
I think the more upfront way for CLS to do this is to print the actual credit card price in the bgg marketplace and describe the cc pricing policy in the bgg marketplace item description.


We apologize for not being as clear as it appears that we have needed to be. We certainly not been trying to mislead anyone and have always canceled orders for any customers who were not comfortable with the 3.9% price difference when paying via Credit Card funded PayPal.

As has been suggested in this thread, we have now have edited our item signatures to make the payment options more clear. We do not accept credit card payments directly, but do accept any of the following four methods of payment:

1. Money Order (From U.S. Post Offices Only)
2. Cashiers Check drawn from a U.S. Bank or Credit Union
3. PayPal NOT funded by a Credit/Debit Card
4. PayPal funded by Credit/Debit Card

Payment methods 1-3 have a 3.9% discount already built into the total cost of the order. Payment method #4 does not qualify for this discount because we must account for the fees charged us by PayPal when payment is funded by a credit or debit card. We considered eliminating or reducing the discount and charging the same price for all payment methods, but then the cost of the PayPal fees we pay would be effectively passed along to all customers, regardless of their payment method. Given that most of our sales are paid for by methods 1- 3, it seems we are going the most good for the most folks with our current discount structure.
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Daniel Brown
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I cannot begin to explain how much this bothers me. I have ordered many times from CLS games. Bob is just a nice guy. The reason why I ever ordered from Bob is because of his prices (including shipping) where the best for the products I was ordering. He has bent over backwords to get and keep my business and that includes combined shipping or my large orders, lowering his prices when I notified him that other online retailers had it for cheeper, and delivering the games to a convention (with no shipping charge).

It seems obvious to me what Bob is trying to do with this Pre-Order. He has a few games in inventory that are not selling and he is hoping to move them with a good price on a hot item. I seen it in retail many times. It seems like a clever way to move inventory and I hope he does well with it.



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Dennis Parsons
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StyxParadox wrote:
I cannot begin to explain how much this bothers me. I have ordered many times from CLS games. Bob is just a nice guy who does this out of his house. The reason why I ever ordered from Bob is because of his prices (including shipping) where the best for the products I was ordering. He has bent over backwords to get and keep my business and that includes combined shipping or my large orders, lowering his prices when I notified him that other online retailers had it for cheeper, and delivering the games to a convention (with no shipping charge).

It seems obvious to me what Bob is trying to do with this Pre-Order. He has a few games in inventory that are not selling and he is hoping to move them with a good price on a hot item. I seen it in retail many times. It seems like a clever way to move inventory and I hope he does well with it.





I second this experience from Bob. He's a great guy who really works hard to accomodate his customers. I ordered from him over the Christmas holiday when every other retailer was out of stock on the games I wanted. The average retailer probably would have gone insane trying to keep up with the changes I wanted due to secret santa gifts arriving and such.

Excellent service from Bob.
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StyxParadox wrote:

It seems obvious to me what Bob is trying to do with this Pre-Order. He has a few games in inventory that are not selling and he is hoping to move them with a good price on a hot item. I seen it in retail many times. It seems like a clever way to move inventory and I hope he does well with it.


It seems obvious after one looks all the way through the links in one of the two threads started on here (by someone from Georgia...hmmm...) that did not disclose the complete terms of the deal in the post.

That, combined with the previously undisclosed extra charges for credit cards, the now weasel word "discounts are already included for the first three payment types" to get around the "no surcharge" policy just don't inspire confidence that this retailer is someone I want to do business with.

There are too many good, inexpensive online retailers that are completely above board with all of their offers and policies that I don't feel the need to bother with someone who I have to parse their prices and use a fine tooth comb on the fine print on the site. What other undisclosed policies might be there somewhere? It's not worth my time to have to worry about it, so I will pass, regardless of how many people say the proprietor is a "nice guy." I don't need a "nice guy," what I need is a retailer who is easy to deal with and isn't ambiguous about prices and terms.
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ZargonDDG wrote:
So it's $15.95 shipping
+ $29.95 for Agricola
+ $59.95 for either Caveman or Freya's Folly.

Total: $105.85.

goes to show how much profit margin is in the price of the FRED items (Caveman or Frey's Folly) and since FRED has instituted vertical market price fixing (ie. won't let retailers sell before a fixed price), this is an interesting way to get around that (ie. $45 is everyone elses price for pre-order Agricola (Z-Man Games English edition), so this essentially reduces price of Caveman or FF by $15... even though some of that is made up for in the "handling" part of the S&H charge).
 
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Paul Sauberer
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JeffyJeff wrote:
ZargonDDG wrote:
So it's $15.95 shipping
+ $29.95 for Agricola
+ $59.95 for either Caveman or Freya's Folly.

Total: $105.85.

goes to show how much profit margin is in the price of the FRED items (Caveman or Frey's Folly) and since FRED has instituted vertical market price fixing (ie. won't let retailers sell before a fixed price), this is an interesting way to get around that (ie. $45 is everyone elses price for pre-order Agricola (Z-Man Games English edition), so this essentially reduces price of Caveman or FF by $15... even though some of that is made up for in the "handling" part of the S&H charge).


The S&H is where this "hot deal" cools off rapidly.

Let's compare the price to Boards & Bits, for example. I am located in South Florida, and so have the largest shipping cost from B&B.

$44.80 for Agricola
$59.95 for Cavenman
$4.50 S&H

Total $109.25 Not that much of a difference. And of course it's only a difference if you are among those buyers who are looking to get both Agricola and either Caveman or Freya's Folly.

Now let's look at Thoughthammer

$45.50 for Agricola
$59.95 for Caveman
$0.00 for shipping if another $20 game is added to the order (hey, if CLS can manipulate the actual orders needed to get the target amount they are looking to find, then so can I)

Total $105.45. Thats 40c less than the CLS price. If theirs is a hot deal, then Thoughthammer has a freakin' raging inferno.

Of course, if we compare apples to apples, CLS is selling Agricola for $41.95 through the BGGM with a $13.95 S&H fee. The S&H does not factor in to the commission paid to BGG, so CLS is managing to save a little bit on every order by having a comparatively large S&H fee. It may not be much, but evidently it is important enough for CLS to structure their prices in this way.

Total cost for Agricola alone

CLS- $55.90
B&B- $53.80 (or less)
TH- $53.50

Unless you fit a very narrow profile, you will pay more for Agricola from CLS than you will at other online vendors. The manner in which the CLS offer has been advertised here on the Geek seems misleading. The good thing about them is that 3% of their stated sales prices (although not the S&H fees) do go to the Geek. Does this outweigh the other factors? That's for each individual to decide.
 
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I also just noticed that rsolow thumbed his own post where he shifted his credit card surcharge to an "everything else has a discount" non-change to his policy.

That is just one more reason for me to not consider him as one of the places where I will purchase games (which would number a total of at least 5 vendors in the last few months).

For me, CLSGames goes in the hopper with sphiatt.

If rsolow would stop with the disingenuousness, then maybe I would reconsider.
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This is not a hot deal. It should not be in the hot deals forum. Overcharging for one game to claim your offering a lower price on another is a scam not a hot deal.

I've seen companies do this discount for non-credit card sales before and to get away with it they actually have to set all their prices higher and then give a discount when people use non-credit card payments. Doing it any other way is fraud. Also it does not cost 4% to receive CC payments from paypal so to top it off he's overcharging on the fee.
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Brian Griffin
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Bob didn't post this thread, no need to bash his business. Just sorry you guys don't live in GA so you could get his great prices to get his business. The man will drive 100 miles to meet you to hand deliver the games so you don't have to pay shipping and bend over backwards to do whatever he can for you. He's made a 40 mile trip at 10pm to meet me before. If that's not customer service I dunno what is..

Honestly a $1.60 difference for all of this over something he didn't post in the first place. The guy who posted it probably loves Bob as much as we do and wanted to help him out. I doubt Bob put him up to it at all. Keep it up Bob, you have our business..

Brian and Katie
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Untgimp wrote:
Bob didn't post this thread, no need to bash his business. Just sorry you guys don't live in GA so you could get his great prices to get his business. The man will drive 100 miles to meet you to hand deliver the games so you don't have to pay shipping and bend over backwards to do whatever he can for you. He's made a 40 mile trip at 10pm to meet me before. If that's not customer service I dunno what is..

Honestly a $1.60 difference for all of this over something he didn't post in the first place. The guy who posted it probably loves Bob as much as we do and wanted to help him out. I doubt Bob put him up to it at all. Keep it up Bob, you have our business..

Brian and Katie


Whether he started the thread or not is irrelevant. Also, whether he made a 40 mile trip at 10 p.m. to give you a game and save you a shipping fee (even if it was uphill both ways in the snow) is also irrelevant to me.

There are certain policies he has that are not transparent and/or skirt (if not violate) certain standards. He thumbed his own post where he tries to change a surcharge into a discount. Shipping fees are comparatively high. These things prevent me from being a customer of his. He may not care if he gets the business of me or others who have expressed similar sentiments. Or maybe he will rethink those policies and try to get us as customers. If I did not express my views he would not have that option.

He is a great seller for you. Fine. That doesn't mean that I will use him.
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Hugh G. Rection
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If Bob is guilty of something, it is of being over-zealous in providing customer service and trying to make his business successful. I've purchased from him a number of times, and the service, communication, and packing have all been top-notch. To compare that to the likes of SPHiatt is way off base.

The credit card surcharge / cash discount (label it however you want) is quite common in the multitude of small computer shops where I live. If you want to save a little extra money, pay by cash. Nobody is rioting outside the computer stores because of this.

Should the pricing policy be spelled out clearer in the Marketplace listings? Perhaps...but no one is forced to pay any particular way. The options are spelled out on the invoice.
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Hugh_G_Rection wrote:
The credit card surcharge / cash discount (label it however you want) is quite common in the multitude of small computer shops where I live. If you want to save a little extra money, pay by cash. Nobody is rioting outside the computer stores because of this.

It is a shady business practice any way you put it, I don't care how many company's are doing it. It used to be very common near me with the computer shops but customers reported it to the credit card company's and I don't know any business still getting away with it.

How do explain charging more than what the fee is? Its one thing to pass on the fee but he's charging extra.

If the guy is willing to drive 100 miles to save you shipping then why is it necessary for him to charge the extra fee?

 
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Call it a deal or not. CLS games is not as big as thoughhammer or B&B and for him to be able to charge the same price or a few dollars cheaper than these Walmart quantity online stores tells me something right there.

He only makes a few bucks off of games he sales because of the quantities he buys from his distributor. While Thoughthammer and B&B are probably getting each copy 5-10 dollars cheaper than he does, yet he still charges the same price to compete.

You all argue about his shipping, but if you ask me, if Thoughthammer and B&B are getting their games cheaper, they could easily lower their profit margin to provide us with cheaper games, yet they don't. They just effectively hide their shipping charges in the price of the game by making their percent markup price higher than Bob does. Much like Tanga, they can buy a high enough quantity to effectively hide their shipping cost in the price they are charging for the item.

He supports the local gaming community as much as he can, will bend over backwards to help his customers, and offers good prices. I'd much rather spend a dollar surcharge to buy from a man that wants to spread the joy of gaming and do whatever he can for you than to spend the same price to an online board game walmart superstore who gives you an automated email reply and overcharges on their games so they can drive nice cars or whatever.
 
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Rsolow just sent a very nice geekmail requesting my phone number and a convenient time to call me to discuss my questions. I don't doubt that he is a "nice" guy and this is a nice gesture I am not interested in what he has to say to me privately or in him having my phone number with my permission to call me.

If he wants to be treated like a legitimate business he needs to act like a legitimate business. This would be very simple for him to resolve. Just simply change his prices to accurately reflect a non-cc discount. While I still think this is on the shady side that is my opinion not a rules violation.

 
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Untgimp wrote:
Call it a deal or not. CLS games is not as big as thoughhammer or B&B and for him to be able to charge the same price or a few dollars cheaper than these Walmart quantity online stores tells me something right there.

He only makes a few bucks off of games he sales because of the quantities he buys from his distributor. While Thoughthammer and B&B are probably getting each copy 5-10 dollars cheaper than he does, yet he still charges the same price to compete.

You all argue about his shipping, but if you ask me, if Thoughthammer and B&B are getting their games cheaper, they could easily lower their profit margin to provide us with cheaper games, yet they don't. They just effectively hide their shipping charges in the price of the game by making their percent markup price higher than Bob does. Much like Tanga, they can buy a high enough quantity to effectively hide their shipping cost in the price they are charging for the item.

He supports the local gaming community as much as he can, will bend over backwards to help his customers, and offers good prices. I'd much rather spend a dollar surcharge to buy from a man that wants to spread the joy of gaming and do whatever he can for you than to spend the same price to an online board game walmart superstore who gives you an automated email reply and overcharges on their games so they can drive nice cars or whatever.

Brian, that's a very nice thought. Unfortunately, it's a bit off the mark.

My huge company (ok, me and a guy that starts in a couple of weeks) does not get huge price breaks for our Walmart quantities. I would know if I did, because I wouldn't have had to take a second job and would have a nicer ride than a 12 year old minivan

And it's typically the smaller guys that can afford to not make as much, due to the fact that they still operate out of their home/garage/basement, where I have a large warehouse and increased overhead to support the volume of business I do.

I'm not saying anything about Robert, I have no idea about his situation or personality. But for you to imply that my 1.5 person business is somehow taking more money from you than the smaller guy that's charging more is simply not true.

Tom
Boards & Bits
www.boardsandbits.com

Please do not reply to this post...it was automatically generated by Tom's 4 year old computer

Edit: from Robert's description of Neuroshima Hex!

"CLS Games - Atlanta's Boardgame Warehouse - is the largest retailer of board games in metro Atlanta!"
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