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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

It's official. Games Workshop is anti-social! Or is it?

This just in: It's official. Games Workshop is anti-social!
Or is it?


Actually, it's not really rumor time as the evidence is quite clear. 

First we heard about it was through our always well informed buddy at PinsofWar.

After the official GW Facebook page had already been gone for quite a while now, as of today Forgeworld and Black Library are gone as well , both with 46k+ subscribers. Twitter accounts are dead, too. The YouTube account, unfortunately, is still up. If this is following a strategy, I would call it insanity. 

On top of that it is said that the local store Facebook pages will also be removed. The German stores are still accessible as of now. We'll see.

So all we have left now are the glorious product teasers that Games Workshop puts on YouTube, I guess. Comments disabled, of course, because every 5 year old with an Internet connection can make better teasers.

There is really not much more to say other than someone seems to be dismantling Games Workshop. From the inside, it seems. 

Shutting off 46k fans (!) from their beloved companies is about the dumbest thing I have heard of in recent history. Just when you thought they could not possibly do anything more mindbogglingly stupid, they do. 

Or do they?

Maybe, just maybe there is a masterplan. Everything will come back in one glorious site, one glorious page, one to RULE THEM ALL. 

Now THAT would be cool. 

Maybe some big player is buying them / has bought them already and is preparing the biggest marketing comeback of the millenium.

That would also be cool. 

Maybe someone looked at the cost of the community team and said: How much do they make us? What do you mean they make us no money? Cut them off. 

Now that is more likely than scenario a or b.

What do you think?

I am dying to know what you think about this? Masterplan? Insanity? Failure? 

Let us know in the comments and: SHARE & ENJOY



  1. Warhammer World page is gone too !

    1. Yes - and it will be back on April 7th. I write a post about that right now. Should be up within the hours.

  2. I would love to think this is the first steps of a larger long-term plan. But with the changes to their publications (white dwarf) I am not sure what we are seeing. Even with the evidence, there is very little to hint at whats going on. Unless a high-up GW guy comes along as makes a statement to calm the people they have just cut off I don't think we will hear anything until something either turns up or nothing happens.

    1. Yeah, we won't hear or see anything until it happens.
      I personally can't wait :D

  3. It says a new page is coming up. Maybe they will delete everything else and concentrate all on one website. The End of the World is coming.

  4. Are they shouting: "die die die " back in Nottingham????

  5. Cheers,

    If... if they have a "new plan", I'd keep the "old" Facebook around until "new" +1 day in order to give the "new" a good start. But maybe I am just crazy

    1. Ah, see now your thinking. I mean could you imagine any major company just shutting down their web presence weeks before a relaunch?

      I think the next time I go into a meeting with a customer I'm going to recommend that. :)

      IMHO, the GW "management" is thinking with it's 4th point of contact, and even then I've seen better decisions than those in the last few months by GW.

    2. Hahah, yeah, you are absolutely right. We are crazy. :D
      Common sense is totally overrated.

  6. Ok, long time reader of the blog, first time writing in. I am going to do my very best to lay out my opinion in an adult way without getting too emotional, so here goes.

    Honestly, I think we all know that GW doesn't do customer feedback. First off, I'll go on a little tangent. I am from Australia, for anyone who has been here and brought GW, you know that it's heavily overcharged, and even worse in Japan. We complained numerous times, and nobody listens. Yet if you buy a car, or a power tool, even a can of soda, and try and contact the company because you are not happy with something, they will actually get back to you, it's a great system.

    I feel that Games Workshop's approach to customer relations is "if we don't hear any negative feedback, then all we do is a positive, right?"

    That may be a gross simplification, but it rings true to me. When was the last time they delivered what the gamers wanted? The only release I have liked lately is the Imperial Knight. Codex wise, they shafted most of the early 6th ed ones again, such as Chaos Space Marines (I use this example as I have used CSM in one form or another since 2nd ed 40k). Then they release supplements. So ok, cool, we thought, they can fix a lot of the damage done here, maybe we'll get our Legions?

    They released Black Legion, and we all sort of looked at each other "Um, ok, isn't Black Legion the basic codex army? Ok, maybe Night Lords, or the big four will be next?" A year later: Codex Crimson Slaughter. What the? Nobody wanted that! Instead of appealing to their massive player base of chaos fans with lovely converted armies of all that is God-themed, they released a niche army. I don't know if they could have shot themselves in the foot any better, honestly.

    A good non GW example would be Coke when they brought out New Coke and everyone complained, they listened, then went back to the old formula. Games Workshop brings out a lackluster codex, and nobody bats an eyelid, even if thousands of dollars worth of models are now, for want of a better turn, useless.

    Decisions like this latest website pull mean that people who are frustrated and want to comment can't, nor can people who are happy to point out what they are doing right. End result: you now have an increasingly disgruntled group of hobbyists.

    1. Hey James, thanks for your comment! I hope to read more in the future :D

      You wrote 'I feel that Games Workshop's approach to customer relations is "if we don't hear any negative feedback, then all we do is a positive, right?" '

      I called that the 'bubble boy' effect in our epic series about the future of Games Days and Games Workshop. And I think you nailed it.

      On April 7th there seem to be a lot of changes coming our way. New website, FW products in stores and so on.

      So let's say they make a great website. Unless it involves the community it will not have the viral reach that Facebook offers.

      I am actually quite dizzy with anticipation of what their next move is. Just by pure chance they should do something right for a change.

    2. Ah, I have actually gone through and read that series now. A lot of great points were made, especially from an economic stand point. Of course that's a debate for another time.

      All we can do really is wait, and hopefully someone has the courage to put their hand up and suggest some really positive ideas. When a gamer with no real economic background or idea about selling a product can turn around and point out some obvious flaws, you have a problem.

  7. Did GW just run? Did they turn into a shut in? Are they fearing their customers?
    It feels like GW just said "I don't want to get hurt anymore" and lokcked the door.

    Is it normal to close your media channels if you get bought?

    1. No, that would not be normal. And I don't think that is the reason.

      I think the April 7th changes are, though. Still I think it would be much better to let your fans know what's going on rather than just vanishing in a puff of logic.

  8. The FB free 'marketing' gravy train reached the end of the line - Most posts by any page were set to reach only 6% of their fan base - Zuckerberg had every intention to reduce that to 2% even 1% in a move set to coerce businesses to pay to play.

    1. Does that really outweigh the feedback they are getting? Just curious because I can see two sides to it, and I feel that a company needs good feedback to improve.

    2. That is an interesting point.
      After all, if we WANT to know about FW (and I still do), we will now all go the website that also has the store conveniently located there...

      But still it has the after-taste of not caring for the community at all.

      Even now I have the hope that there is some grand master scheme behind all this and the rumors about April 7th are right.

  9. I think the best feedback they get, is to look at their sellings.

    I'm in Japan, and actually "Imperial Knight" is out-of-stock for 3 weeks, "void shield" disappeared in few hours, Crimson Slaughter (the so-called unwanted codex) has less than 100 copies left in its Limited Edition (after 2 weeks only).
    The noisy Internet 40k community is really a small part of their customers.

    We have to agree that there are customers for Crimson Slaughters (probably people who start 40k with Dark Vengeance), who do not care at all about overpowered codex (who is able to buy and convert that much models for a seerstar?).
    Even in Japan and Australia, GW is doing good (if not, they would have close their shops).

    There is a rumors for a new website, that will probably come with new FB account.
    If not, that just means, it was just useless for them, and their selling did not change, at all, with or without Eddie.
    There are already so much blog on Internet about GW product, that are doing free PR for them, do they really care to have their own account?

    I will take my case, I'm an IG players, everyday I check different blogs about GW news, and without even checking GW website or GW FB account, I already know when the next IG will be out and I will buy tons of Scion, even if the rules are craps, because those models are just pure awesomeness.
    Does really GW need to update my Facebook news feed with their own news?

    1. Good points!

      It seems that April 7th will be a major re-launch of what GW does as far as web-presence is concerned.

      Still I think starting a new page and then letting the 46000 fans know on the Forge World (or BL) site that something new has launched would have been a wiser move ;)

  10. New Website is in the Pipeline with new shop System too...soi guess they will Combine the Forces of INet then...makes sense in my opinion

  11. Maybe they just desperatly want to go back to the 'good old days', starting off with the social media accounts. Soon enough they will close their website and online store, and then force other online-stores to no longer sell their products or shut down so all GW products only will be available in local stores.
    Because, y'know, GW is all kinds of crazy.

    1. Well, they already did the GW website only part for non-brick-and-mortar stores. If I am not mistaken, they have an online monopoly in the US already. In Europe online sales are discouraged by much lesser margins for the traders. GW accountants visit the shops to check their books to see the ratio between in-store sales and online sales. Some Inquisition, right there! :D

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