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I'm a big fan of the GURPS line of RPG products and I hang out at their forums every once in a while. Lately, someone brought up the question about errata and it turned into a big flaming about how GW handles their Errata.
Here's what one guy had to say about GW.Ok, I picked up 4 SJG prods at a con this weekend (In addition to walking pneumonia....) and opted to check them out for eratta, despite the fact they were obviously quite well written.
So I went to the support section and found the eratta for the prods in question, and got them on my screen with no problem or time wasted.
They were also easy to print out if I wanted to, but in most cases the eratta was so minor as to be not needed, like the bit about a misspelled link name in one.
Now, what happens when I got to GW for eratta?
Well, the eratta you want may not be there as they may have printed it in an annual collection called chapter approved, meaning they screwed the pooch, but YOU are expected to PAY for the corrections to the mistakes THEY made.
IF the eratta you need is there, you go to download it and BAM! They hit you in the face with a form full of legalese that you must 'agree' to in order to get the correction sto the product you've already bought and paid for.
Then, finally, they download you a huge PDF file loaded with cute graphics and logos that eat a lot of your ink if you opt to print them out. If it had been a simple text tile it would have taken a fraction of the time to download and less ink to print, but........
What I came to understand is this guy is RIGHT. GW even screws us with our errata from books that THEY wrote badly in the first place.
It's not bad enough that they don't bother to take the time to edit any of their books decently, but they also make it an incredible ordeal for us to get our errata.
First of all, it's incredibly difficult to navigate their crappy web site just to FIND the errata and when you do, you have to DL it in PDF format rather than just look at it right then and there to see what changes are up.
Heck, I wouldn't even print out the recent errata that they came out with at my house. I waited until I was at work where I could waste THEIR ink on the incredibly unecessary graphics.
Ok, now that I'm done with my rant, maybe some other people would like to add their two cents in.
I have to agree. GW may make some really cool miniatures but their ability to write rules is absolutely horrible. Aside from the rules being written poorly in the first place (second class rules at that) it took until the release of this rule book to even get an index. An idex that was obsolete prior to publishing I might add. I forgive GW on a lot of things, but their written word is not one of them.
Perhaps what GW needs is some input. I know that every time I have heard of someone complaining, they get free stuff since GW thinks that will shut them up. Maybe a LO petetion for free errata is in order, a clear and concise document presenting why we should not have to give them any money for mistakes they made to products we already own. Then again these kind of things are easily dismissed but if we do nothing it is simply letting them do whatever they want and they will continue to do so. Hell, we already enforce not posting rules of their products online because god forbid somebody might get stats for a unit so they don't have to buy a $25 book for one page of rules.
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I never by Annual or the chapter approved books, I get the info from white dwarf or if neccessary from the website. I never really thought about it before, but thats a good points. Why should we pay for their mistakes?
As the hobby is expensive enough anyway I think they should make their chapter approved or corrections and stuff cheaply, low amount of graphics and stuff, then give them away to whoever wants them in GW.
If we get a box set with bits missing, we don't have to go back and pay for the extra bits (in most cases) we get it replaced for free, because it is their mistake.
Of course, getting 50 people to agree here isn't going to prove anything is it? We need to let GW know.
I completely agree with you all.
The problem is that GW refuses to give us the updates and errata for free, not that I'm greedy or anything, BUT! IT IS THEIR PROBLEM!
But ok, back to the downloadable stuff they have...
Ok so they make real fancy stuff, to many this would seem unnessesary, but also keep in mind, if you really want to keep updated you proparbly make yourself a nice document holder to keep them in, and in my case I really appreciate them making the updates and errata this well, but then again there should also be a standard plain text version avaliable.
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Hear, hear! Paying to get rule corrections is just sick. And their goddamn website needs some change, it takes forever to find what you want!
Its not that GW REFUSE to give them away for free.
Its tried and tested, CA books SELL. So why in cheesecakes name should they stop?
If CA didn't sell then they would probably change their minds, but that won't happen.
I've bought one CA book since they've been coming out...since what? 2000? The rest I either DL and print, or I play with people who already have a copy of this years CA, or the printing updates.
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Well, what's up with the recent 4th edition errata, then? Acrobat 4 no more good enough for them or what? Don't they know that not everybody can run AR 6 on their hardware?
Now, the way it used to work was that get little boxes of Errata whenever needed published in WD. These were to be cut out (or photocopied and cut out as the rules were always in black and white) and stuck into the books.
This was of course in the elder days of WD (upto 150 or so? I dunno) and to my mind, this was an adequate provision. Everyone always thought and considered that Warhammer and GW games in general were a constantly evolving hobby and the rule books were not entities in themselves - i.e you had really to read WD every month otherwise you would miss the new stuff that they were providing and this then was considered the best place to put any erratum that came along.
To be honest I think this is still the best primary place to put the errata - you can argue rightly that errata should be free - their mistake, they should pay for it. To be fair though Most people who are 'in' the hobby do read WD or know someone who does and would get the get a copy of the errata so that is the absolute best way to get the largest distribution of the corrections. If they would go back to paper 'cut and paste' updates then I suspect most of the complainants would be satisfied.
As for Codex Addendums - we have always had those but they have always been just compilations of stuff that was previously delivered in WD so if you wanted the stuff you bought it in the glossy book - if you didn't then you didn't.
As for internet errata, thats okay its a nice idea but not everyone uses the internet and no company is obliged to maintain an up to date site to provide updates for an alternative media.
It is easy to argue that - Goddammit I bought this so you have to keep paying to keep me up to date. Yes they do up to a point, but being litiginous and the 'I'm gonna sue the ass off this evil empire' frames of mind that some people display just doesn't get anywhere really.
They have to do nothing more than make the corrections available to you, not hand deliver it and I believe that if you hand-wrote a letter to GW requesting an errata sheet for a specific publication then they would quite happily send you one sooner or later. Duty dispensed.