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Subject: Quandry of a relative newb rss

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15 Keys
United States
Living in the Delco
Pennsylvania
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Hi all,
I'm a relative newb (I've started in board games in the past couple years and only got a BGG account this year), so forgive me if this is something that has already been discussed to death. But I have a problem.

My FLGS (there are actually a couple, but this is the one I go to) is a nice place, it is clean, it is relatively friendly, and it has a couple board game nights every week that I like to go to when I can. They have store copies of games you can play in their room with tables, it is bright, well lit, doesn't smell funny, and people show up with other games. It is overall a lot of fun.

And I want to support them because they are somewhat new and I feel like I get a lot from them through the board game nights. BUT....all of their prices are MSRP or above (I am in the US) and I have a hard time bringing myself to spend that much. I couldn't bring myself to what amounts to overspending on a game that I can get for 50-80% of that price online.

This is a moot point, however, because right now I am too poor to buy anything new, but it still is a mental wrestle between supporting a local business that caters to your niche market versus getting more games for what your money (5 games a year instead of 3).

I know there isn't "one correct answer", but I was wondering how other people dealt with this situation.

Thanks!
 
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David Debien
United States
Round Rock
Texas
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I buy the majority of my games via Online Gamestores. However, I do attend a local game day at a store in Austin called Great Hall Games. When I go there, I usually peruse their selection and I try to buy something from them each time I go, usually a less expensive game or maybe a game aid like a dice tray or the like. Unless I can get a much better deal online, say more than $15 off, I will buy the game at GHG to support them.
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Leo Zappa
United States
Aliquippa
Pennsylvania
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Yes, it's been dealt with in the past, but no problem bringing it up again - the local store vs. on-line retailer discussion is always relevant. Myself, I use both. Like you, I have a local store that has friendly, knowledgable staff, gaming tables, sponsored events and tournaments, and a good selection of games and ancillary items. Like yours, my local store charges full price, although the owner will provide a discount for large orders to 'good customers' like myself who have spent a good deal of money in the store. However, he doesn't carry some of the games I like (the more hard-core wargames), so those I get on-line. I also buy OOP games from eBay, since my local store doesn't carry such games.

At the end of the day, if my local store carries a game I want, I will buy it from them rather than go on-line. I do this because I feel I get additional value by having a place to play multi-player games (I do game at my house, but often it's more convenient for my group to gather at the local store), and I've met some of current gaming buddies through this store. I appreciate that and its worth something to me, hence I have no problem returning the favor by buying from the store whenever I can.
 
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Matt Riddle
United States
Oxford
Michigan
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i use both. store for impulse buys. online when I have games queueing up for awhile
 
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Jay Lacson
United States
Alamogordo
New Mexico
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My current situation makes purchasing at my local store easier.

I live in Hawaii where shipping costs are extremely expensive. Amazon's free shipping option saves me quite a few bucks, but at the expense of waiting 1-2 weeks for a game to arrive. Some games at my local store are only a few dollars more than Amazon's costs, so I pay a higher cost to get the game immediately...and I'm ok with that.

If I was in your shoes, there's a couple things that would factor into how frequently I would purchase from the local store. Do they charge a cover for their game nights? If so, I'd probably purchase locally less frequently. And depending on how hospitable they are would also influence how often I purchase from them.


There's also a few factors that contribute to my decision. In fact, I had just called one of the local stores(mainly a comic book store, but has a small section for board games) this morning asking for a price on The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game, which I know they have at least 3 copies in stock. The person who answered the phone had no idea about the game and even after I told her where the game was located in their store, she said they didn't have any in stock, but it was "on order".

The extreme lack of knowledge regarding board games or even their own inventory, convinced me to purchase from Amazon and will further deter me from purchasing from this store in the future.
 
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Dennis Engilis
United States
Elk Grove
California
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I support a few game stores locally and even a couple out of state stores (ie. when I visit my son). I also order from a couple of online stores. I am very open with retailers about my practice and the reason for it. I enjoy supporting retail game stores thereby supporting the local gaming community. What I share with the local retailers, with whom I have also become friends, is this bottom line. Retailers selling games are trying to get more buck for the bang. While my goal is to get more bang for the buck. For me I have reached a happy medium. I both support small business game retailers which I think is important and manage to stretch my buck a bit more by saving with online orders. When I put it that way they have had no problem understanding and accepting my point of view.
 
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Don Kimes

Fort Wayne
Indiana
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I think if you game at a FLGS you should support them. The space they provide and the games of theirs they allow you to play has a cost to it weather they charge you for it or not. If you enjoy spending time there, playing their games and what not by purchasings games from them you keep them in business. It's a win win for you and them. You continue to play for free and have a venue to play at and they can keep their doors open for another month. Yes they charge full MSRP but they have expenses that an online store do not and board games is still a niche market. Unless you love boards games you probably don't go into a FLGS so they loose business. Online stores can reach the masses much more easily.

But I also love my online discount retailers. I do not game at a FLGS anymore. I have a group of friends that meet at various locations around town that is also free that doesn't take up space at the FLGS. I am apart of the local guild and do my fair share of hosting game nights. Me and my buddies often pool our game orders together and order enough to get the free shipping at the various business online. So if that is truly the route you wish to take look up game groups that get together and you can game with them.
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Ron
Austria
Vienna
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“It's all in the mind.” ― George Harrison
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Devoted Follower of the Most Holy Church of the Evil Bob. Possessed and down the road to become chaotic, evil & naughty. All hail the Evil Bob and his Stargate.
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IMHO, without the support of all the FLGS out there, our hobby would shrink. It's a place where you can meet, chat, play, and of course, buy.
OTOH, this is also true for BGG ...

However: mb
They are hard-working people with a love and a dedication to gaming. And none of them is rich ...

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DuckOfDeath V
United States
Hillsboro
OR
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fifteenkeys wrote:

This is a moot point, however, because right now I am too poor to buy anything new, but it still is a mental wrestle between supporting a local business that caters to your niche market versus getting more games for what your money (5 games a year instead of 3).

Buy 4 games a year. One at the FLGS and the other 3 online.
 
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