Jervis Johnson the loyal corgi for Games Workshop corporate. Every month in White Dwarf Jervis writes his latest thinly veiled PR banter where he answers the important questions that only he seems to obsess about.

In the February issue of White Dwarf Jervis Johnson answers the question that I can only imagine every 12-year-old with peer pressure issues asks, "What miniatures is it OK to collect"?

He answers the question of course with a resounding duh, "buy whatever you want just give GW your money"!

It isn't the answer that is important, but what he actually is saying about our hobby that is. Oddly, making it seem like it isn't really what anyone would consider is the hobby...

So what does Jervis Johnson exactly say about the hobby?

According to Jervis it is this,

First of all it's important to underline that WE consider the hobby first and foremost a collecting hobby, and specifically a collecting Citadel miniatures.

To anyone what has followed GW, this shouldn't come really as a surprise. Games Workshop isn't really a game company, but a miniatures company. This overarching focus has provided cover and explanation much to the consternation of many hobbyists in regards to GW behavior 

Words are important.

Why does GW always refer to us as Hobbyists? We only get the word "player" in relationship to games as played and even painter is hardly used unless in a strict context.

The word hobby sounds and feels more personal and can grab a wider range of consumer. Strictly speaking, collecting (anything) is a hobby in of itself, but if GW marketed itself as it truly is (only interested in us as collectors) it wouldn't garner the same kind or amount of fanaticism we see today. In other words, Jervis makes it sound like GW is nothing more than highfalutin Beanie Babies peddler.

The article goes on to illustrate this point...

Our primary focus is first on making great Citadel miniatures to collect, and secondly providing help and guidance that allow people to do things with the models in their collection... the collecting part of the hobby can survive on its own, while the painting and gaming side cannot.

The focus will always be on the miniature and benignly Jervis is making the point that models should sell themselves. What is Jervis also saying? Is he telling me that I should just buy the model, let sit on shelf unopened in the hopes the value will go up? Is Jervis speaking about some vast group of "collectors" we are unaware that keep this hobby going?

What if the better question is, does Jervis not realize that those "secondary" things are what really drives the hobbyist to buy the model in the first place. Without the guidance, history, the rules, and community how does he believe that those secondary things aren't the primary hobby within the hobby?

For instance, how many times have you heard someone complain about how a model looks, but buys three of them because they key part of an army list? That wasn't for the joy of collecting.

How many GW enthusiasts have you met that just collect for collecting?

Of course, we all have the impulse to buy a model that later ends up being traded or never used, but the motivation wasn't to collect it.

The motivation was because I found something interesting unrelated to "got to collect them all".

Serious Beanie Babies collectors could care less about what the Beanie Baby looks like, instead they are concerned what value it will have later.

It is all those "secondary" things that create the value not the other way around. It is the same reason we see Magic the Gathering still very popular; the game itself provides the value for the collecting.

It is the painting, the gaming, and background that we are really collecting and for someone like Jervis that has been with the company so long to simply tell me, "I could care less what you do with the model just buy it" is down right insulting.

Jervis then goes on to praise the tournament player and painter for expanding the hobby, but it is only a secondary part of the hobby with the core going to collecting. Finally, Jervis speaks about the free nature in which this hobby has become, telling anyone to basically do whatever they want, which I find funny considering, just how relentless GW goes to protecting its IP.

In essence, GW isn't in sync with hobbyists it has created where we see story, broken rules, green stuff they only see miniature in cardboard box.


Discuss this article and receive email notification of future articles  of this type when youJoin the Meat for Meta Group


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.