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Is it true 20% play and 80% just collect models?

  • Yes. GW has it right with 20% play and 80% collect.

    Votes: 7 46.7%
  • Heck no. GW has those numbers way wrong.

    Votes: 8 53.3%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Games Workshop believe that of the people that buy their models only 20% play the game and 80% are simply model collectors. Do you believe this is true?
 

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Sparta!
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Given the price factor involved in starting a new army to play at reasonable sizes...

Definitely.

I fall more in to the collector than gamer category, what with real life commitments, I can buy 1, maybe 2 kits a month if I'm lucky.
 

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To me, the question isn't "Are you a player or a collector," but more "Would you collect if there were no rules to play by." To which I would answer no. I love my collection, but I wouldn't have bought any of it in the first place if it wasn't something I could play with.
 

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ISIS Secret Agent Squishy
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I guess the real question is "Did GW decide on those ratios before or after they killed off the original game?"
Guess what GW, killing a game off turns people from gamers into collectors...even if they don't want to be.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
An original warhammer game designer resigned because he didn't like the way GW was heading. In an interview, he claimed that GW's philosophy was that since 20% of their customers were players and 80% were just collecting models, they could spend less money and time on the game aspect of their business. For him and many others, we feel that was wrong and that Warhammer is a game first and a model collecting company second. Like TypeSet1 said, "would you collect if there were no rules to play by?". I think the overwhelming answer is no for just about every person I know.
 

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I know that I am mostly a collector bur only because I don't want to play an incomplete army, or one that doesn't look good on the table. And since I have a hard time completing one, I am always moving onto another project inbetween..

So yes, more collector than player, but I wouldn't have gotten into this project without a game to go with it.
 

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Drill Sergeant
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This is a bit of an old thread Marxus ;)

To be honest. I think I'm 95% collector and 5% gamer. I don't get the chance to play many games nowadays so most of the stuff I buy and paint is mainly for my collectors OCD. I'm building a 10,000pt Imperial/Space Marine Gothic fleet. I know I will hardly ever get to use it but to hells with it. I want a full sector fleet and that's that. The same goes with my Inquisitor models. I have almost the whole range now. Will I use them all? probably not but I want a full set :D

I think adult life is getting in the way of gaming really. I have a good core of mates who play and I have a gaming room... I just have a wife who 'plans' my weekends for me :S
 

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Benevolent Dictator
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This is a bit of an old thread Marxus ;)
Activity is activity!

I used to consider myself more of a gamer, but these days it's simply not true. I was in to Fantasy in a big way, and now that the game is gone I just sort of...
I'm not saying that I don't have a finger on the pulse of AoS, 30k, or even 40k these days - but I don't really have that urge to go out and play any of GW's games these days. It also doesn't help that adulthood is - as with Borak - taking away from ability to enjoy the hobby, although it isn't as issue of time for me, but rather one of money. To that end I spend more time making the most of what models I do buy, and also working on other aspects of the hobby, like rules development and so on.

I don't doubt GW's estimates though. Really, I think that when they say "collectors" they aren't referring to people who don't game. I think they're talking about the way that people view the models. I'd say that only about 20% of all gamers are the real hardcore, bleeding-edge, competitive types. The other 80% of "collectors" would include people who enjoy playing the game, but are content to build an army that they like based on looks or fluff, etc. They're not going to replace their super gorgeous Harlequin models that they spent hours on, just because someone tells that that a bunch of ShiningSpears would be better. Factor in the other folks (especially now) who are buying the minis for use in other gaming systems. I still see plenty of GW models in use for 'Kings of War', and in quite a few cases, those guys are actually buying new minis to create armies (Elves in particular, because Mantic's Elves look awful). Back when they could be purchased, I knew lots of guys into Historicals gaming who were buying up Brets and Empire models by the bucket-full because they were some of the best on the market.

What really stings, is that GW takes those odds, and exploits them. The 20% who do play competitively are abused to no end; things like using "Codex Creep" to force us into buying new models to stay competitive, and the constant "Buff/Nerf" game played each edition (recent-ish memory is Marauders between 7th/8th WoC books, where they went from god-like to worthless). So the fact is, GW knows that they can use the game to move models. Also, they don't invest in their rules at all. This has changed somewhat for AoS (40k is still a clusterf***) but I don't have much faith in GW - I think that they're just trying to recover the lost playerbase from AoS, realizing too late that Fantasy was a much-loved game and outright murdering it was wrong. It's frustrating, because it doesn't take much to develop rules! I do it for free, as a hobby, and often. Myself and others have turned out Armybooks that are on par with anything GW has ever produced. The guys doing 9th Age are working on an entire game system, for free. I am too, for that matter! If there were anyone in that company who was still truly passionate about the hobby, they'd have plenty of opportunities to create excellent rules systems. But they drove all those guys out years ago. Not all of them even retired - the Perry Bros are still making miniatures, Alessio Cavatore still writes some of the best rulesets I've played to date (KoW, Bolt Action, and the new sci-fi offer). These people didn't retire or leave the hobby to grow old - they just quit GW
 

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Drill Sergeant
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I see you haven't lost your talent for long posts Sarathai! ;)

Lol, that last bit reminds me of an old saying "People don't quit jobs, they quit bosses" which may be very close to the truth.

GW are still producing the best models out there and whilst their prices are high I still don't mind paying them. Other companies of the same detail level charge as much or more so, eh, tit for tat in that regard. As for rules, I think you're right about the 20% are the hardcore tournament gamers where as the collectors are the on-off casual gamers who have a huge collection but game infrequently. I actually got a bit nostalgic after your post and went through my old Fantasy pictures folder. I forgot how much effort I put into some of my WHFB armies... :S

Another annoying factor for me is that they moved the games club to a friday night and I now work Monday to Friday on a PM shift which means I never get to go unless I'm on holiday! If it were on a Saturday I'd probably get a game in every other week which'd be AWESOME and actually give me some incentive to paint stuff that isn't specialist games :D
 

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Benevolent Dictator
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Well, I only get to post once in a blue moon these days, so I just save it all up!

I know how you feel though, with the weekly game meets. I have 2 clubs near by, one meeting Thursdays and one meeting on Wednesdays. D&D organized play is every Tuesday. I work Mon-Fri from 2pm to 10pm :/

I've been playing a good bit of Bolt Action, which is a great game and it's going into 2nd edition (incidentally, Alessio did this one), but nothing really scratches the itch for lose Fantasy except to scrape up games of Fantasy. I have been looking at Kings of War (Alessio, again) but I realized that it's just a 15mm wargame, enlarged to 28mm scale.

9th Age is a scourge, in my opinion. They have yet to release a solidified ruleset for the game, they are constantly changing. I understand that the rules are free, and web-based, so the constant updates are free and unobtrusive, but the fact that you could have 2 players with the same army running on different updates because someone didn't check the site in the last 48hrs... it's frustrating. Also, it's hardly different enough from 8th Edition to warrant splitting the dwindling playerbase. It's really just 8th with the ETC rules, and then fan-updates for the older or off-balance armies. People are really excited for it, and they're rose-tinting the hell out of it. It's good, but it's nothing groundbreaking. I'd rather be like the OldHammer guys, and just get a tight-knit 8th edition community together.

I'm trying to come up with something that sort of unifies all of the systems, but I can't kid myself - I know that anything fan-based in just dead in the water, and it makes it hard to get motivated to do much. We've been houseruling a bunch of stuff in 8th, and that was going to be my starting point, plus I've been playtesting a fan armybook that's basically "Warhammer: Ancient Battles" for the 8th edition rules.
 

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Drill Sergeant
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I had noticed :p You don't even reply to my threads nowadays either!

Wow, that's the same shift I do! Fantastic for destroying social life isn't it? I haven't played a game in over a month now but I'm doing LOADS of hobby stuff which is nice.


Aye, I have totally given up on WHFB now. I do have fond memories of my O&G army though and would probably get right back into fantasy if I could just get a game in but I don't think that's going to happen any time soon and even if it does you know you're just playing a dead game with a dwindling fan base and range line (a bit like LO really). Fancy a game of 8th? ;)


I have actually started to build/paint and write army lists for 40k now so maybe I'll get back into 40k! but my main drive is specialist games. I might as well paint the stuff I want to paint if I'm not going to get a game in :D So I guess that means I'm a collector now but not through choice. I'm just a gamer that doesn't game!!!
 

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Yeah, life is a pain, digging far too much into the ability to spend time mucking about with toy soldiers.

Interesting to see the responses in this post, and look back over it since my first response.

Fantasy will always be my favourite system, and I have so many fond memories of the game, it's imagery and the absolutely immersive nature of it's well planned and rich background. After a lengthy hiatus I was returning to the game, and started collected both the greenskins and high elves. Then, a month or two after that the End Times hit and the travesty of what they did to fantasy occurred. AoS holds no interest for me and I do not like the childishness and cartoonishness of the mmorpg style of both models and background. It may be getting better, but there's only so much "Bloodsmash Smashblood" style of naming I can take.

So I diverted back into 40k. And I have to say that, even though some of the grimdark darkgrim is getting a bit ridiculous (seriously, the Wulfen...I like my old EoT 13th company thank you very much) I do like the approach that GW has taken over the last 12 months. Yes, they are still horribly expensive plastic toys, no it's not an error free system (but it never has been and never will be and to me it's not an issue), but the change in leadership and return to focus on the games is great to see. The re-introduction of starter packs, the numerous mini games and campaign boxes being released, kill team games and all the other products and options now being released is great. It's what got me so intrigued in the games to start with.

The recent release of the AoS mini arena game (can't remember the name of it but it's probably Blood-something) seems to indicate that they are taking this approach there as well, and I think that can only be a good thing. Formations work brilliantly from both a collecting and gaming point of view, and bundles like that can only help sales. GW still has a long way to go, but for the first time in years, I've got faith in them to get there.
 

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I can really only speak for myself, and for several friends who helped get me into the game, back in '03. They were more into painting, than playing, if just because it was easier to schedule painting. When we played, it was often 1500-3000 points, and armies like IG, and Tyranids, didn't have quite the low model count "melta-vets with chimeras" thing running; some armies were massive, even at the lower points threshold, and we might've spent most of a day, in the basement of our dorms, playing. Now, I see even the "quantity is a quality all its own" armies, like Guard, try to play smaller forces, like bare bones HQ, and the aforementioned melta-vets troops, partly for ease of prep, partly for ease of transport, and probably mostly just as a way to not go broke. Still, back then, even if the four of us were more into painting, than playing (and I'll admit, I was mostly just helping one of them paint, where my own skill wouldn't hurt, as I wasn't investing in anything, yet; he already had SIX armies, and I helped paint some Nids, some tanks, and Marneus Calgar), none of us would have done so if there wasn't a game, something motivating us to paint them, and use them, beneath it.

Now, I don't actively play at all. My friends moved away, got older, have families. I did some of that. Since I got into it at college, I never fully invested in a standing army, and only occasionally order stuff to paint, when it catches my attention. Where I am now, I don't know anyone else who actively plays, so no big, standing armies, waiting to take the table.

Also, between stuff I've heard, concerning GW not doing research on what their fans want, and the starting price of some of their stuff, or the cold negligence they display toward some of their other properties (I'm thinking SoB, but you can probably think of others), I'm inclined to agree that they see their game as more a collector's hobby; they aren't as expensive as World Series tickets, but I don't know too many other games where you pay hundreds of dollars for (individual) pieces, only to play very rarely. I'll grant that it might not be 80%-20%, though, as these models are a bit to niche for "army/military" collectors, and if you weren't ever going to play the game, you probably weren't going to drop $75 on a model you need to assemble, and paint, that doesn't really look like anything else. A Land Raider is a nice model, but its base detail isn't that high, and it looks only like a Land Raider, so you must want a Land Raider.

I do wish GW made a wider array of stuff. I wish that they weren't so Astartes-focused, and that they didn't have several largely abandoned factions, with little to no dilogue about what they're actively doing. I also wish they weren't SO expensive, but that's sort of been their thing, for a long time. As is, I think they are right, and more people in the hobby are collectors, rather than players, as you can customize your models, kit-bash some great conversions, and maybe make a nice, small squad of things, but that won't make an army to field. For my part, I've done a few HQs, ordered some other Guard stuff, and then don't sit down, and paint ;) , but I never consider getting a whole Guard, Eldar, or Space Marine army; I personally like it more for the painting, and I think they believe that, too. I might put it more at 70%-30%.

Lastly, I feel this way sort of on account of this site. This was one of the more active ones, when I joined, and seems predominantly devoted to play, but a lot of its activity has fallen off, this year, as people have either left the game, gotten busy with life, or what have you. Compare that to, say, DakkaDakka, who seem predominantly focused on modelling, and where a thread I post can disappear off the first page (unanswered ;) ) in the same day, and it seems, at least to this very limited range of research, that more people at least want to talk about modelling their minis, more than plan battle strategies for the armies those minis comprise. Okay, I'm done. Have a good one, all.
 

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I'm only going to say yes because that's how I currently feel like being.
I love the background to 40k and I've had some good games.
but for every good game i've had just as many if not more bad ones. This is either down to poor rules spoiling a game and turning it into a debate or argument, or just the attitude I've witnessed from many who just seem to hate people who have "fun".

but I'll play WWII, Napoleonics, English civil war etc and have no issues.
but that's how I currently feel.
 
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