Meat for Meta: Turning the Corner
Changing be a Changing…for Good?
Meat for Meta is rated editorial nonsense. These articles are meant to complain about some group, somewhere, that is playing the game for all the wrong reasons or simply to just make fun of 40k nerd rage.
Things are happening!
Games Workshop is doing the unexpected, they are for the first time in a long time are listening! After years of stagnation and upheaval GW has finally gotten through their skulls give us what the community has been asking for. The defeat at the hands of Chapterhouse (seems like many moons ago) is bearing real fruit. It could be perhaps traced to the new CEO Kevin Roundtree for the change in tone. Regardless why it started, it is now moving at warp speed, as every week we get a new revelation demonstrating to the community that GW is ready to change.
So, what are the things giving us hope again for Games Workshop?
Personally, as a blogger I noticed a few years ago, when all the legal threats just stopped. No longer was I getting notices, nor were any of the other news or rumors websites. Then slowly, little things started to add up, the release of 40k Campaigns signal something stirring. The rapid fire releases was another, with long awaited armies arriving like Harlequins and Ad-Mech. Then early last year rumors started to float around about things like Plastic Horus Heresy and Kill Team. Assassinorum: Execution Force came out laying out the boardgame future. Then GW announced they would start doing trade shows, something they always felt they were above. Once plastic Horus Heresy dropped though, it was clear something was up with GW, then it was the bombshell, Specialist Games were coming back that really brought everything home. Not only did GW make the announcement it came months to years before we will see a release.
Now finally, for once GW can control the anticipation of products, without rumor mills throwing everyone off on what to expect. By controlling the narrative GW has learned some Marketing 101. They also put the Specialist Games under the last trusted part of the company: Forge World. GW would then launch in the Start Collecting! boxes at amazingly low prices; but even in my most fevered dreams, I didn’t believe Genestealer Cult would happen. Minus the price tag, Kill Team: Overkill was for even for the most callused GW fan universally praised. It didn’t stop there! GW is at trade shows showing off new boardgames months in advance with Blood Bowl sending the everyone crazy. GW is also going into bigger store chains with intro products for kids coming out by the end of the year.
GW as of only a few weeks ago dove head first into social media, with Facebook pages for Age of Sigmar and Warhammer 40k which haven’t existed for years. They were also ready to engage, as this week we got a call for community to submit FAQ questions! This shocked everyone as the standard line of letting players decided is finally cracking. If they follow through it would be the most amazing thing to happen to 40k in a long time. We also have rumors of GW dipping into tournament play, with at the very least organizing kits and maybe prize support. GW everywhere is asking for suggestions even with White Dwarf making a call to the community for improvements.
All this good news still doesn’t come without some sour grapes. The noose that is Age of Sigmar continues to tighten and if they don’t add in an honest balanced army construction mechanic soon it won’t be worth saving. Model prices in general are still too high, with wild inconsistencies plaguing many army lines. We also have Sisters of Battle and Chaos Space Marines two quintessential factions still without updates to both models and rules. The pattern though is clear GW is listening, their stubborn streak might be breaking as new blood from top to bottom are making a difference. The community online and off are no longer the enemy, a lesson I think GW might have finally learned.