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Star Wars RPG @ Gen Con 2013


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#1 stuartgreenwell

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 06:37 AM

Fantasy Flight is hosting 345 events at Gen Con 2013.

But none of them are the new Star Wars RPG?

Someone needs to go to Marketing 101.



#2 LethalDose

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 09:53 AM

stuartgreenwell said:

Fantasy Flight is hosting 345 events at Gen Con 2013.

But none of them are the new Star Wars RPG?

Someone needs to go to Marketing 101.

Good point.  A convention schedule 3 months out from the event date, I can't imagine they're be changes in the schedule with such late notice.

It's basically locked in stone by now…



#3 stuartgreenwell

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 05:08 PM

So, your theory is that were on the ball and got all their other events posted in time for Gen Con registration, except for Star Wars?



#4 LethalDose

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 06:36 PM

stuartgreenwell said:

So, your theory is that were on the ball and got all their other events posted in time for Gen Con registration, except for Star Wars?

No, my theory is that they don't know exactly how much they're going to have and they aren't sure when/where they want it yet.  

Instead of posting it now and changing it several times between now and the start of the event, they wait until they're more certain and post it then.

 

Wait, what was YOUR theory?  They weren't going to have ANY events for the new Star Wars RPG at GenCon!?

 



#5 Donovan Morningfire

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 11:17 PM

GenCon itself has said the scheduled events to date are subject to change, right up to the day the convention starts.

It could also be the FFG wants to be certain they have the books at GenCon for sale before they submit a bunch of EotE game sessions.  After all, why advertise* something that you can't sell to the public?  Especially when it's one of the two biggest gaming events of the year?

*Because let's be honest, any game session/events run by an RPG company are pretty much a means of advertising the product by letting the customer base try it out.


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#6 LethalDose

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 04:23 AM

Actually, your OP for this thread and response possibly perfectly exemplifies exactly why they haven't posted SW RPG times/dates yet.  You're making the assumption that FFG's marketing is crap (e.g. "needs to go to Marketing 101") because they haven't posted any SW events for GenCon.

What if they had posted events for the new Star Wars RPG (I'm actually not sure if you're talking about EotE or AoRm but it doesn't really matter).

Let's say that they posted a discussion for an hour on Friday afternoon, that was going to be ALL about the development cycle, whats coming next, what the future plans are.

Now, lets say that a room becomes unavailable for some other discussion on Saturday morning, totally unrelated even to FFG.  GC has to move that discussion to the SW RPG dev cycle time and room.  Jay Little can't make the Saturday morning slot, so FFG takes down that discussion period.

Do you know what happens then?

Some little tool on the internet who's been watching the GC schedule grid online 3 months before the con sees the SW RPG event canceled.  Said tool then posts on FFG forums that the SW RPG discussion has gotten canceled and starts asksing "What does this mean?!"  The community gets whipped into a frenzy over NOTHING and collectively starts losing their $#!t.   FFG then has to deal with another flare of fan discontent when they could be, y'know, working on the product.

All because they publicly scheduled and removed a talk 3 months before GC.

If you think this doesn't happen, I'd direct you to another thread, and see the posters practically crap themselves trying to figure out what it means for release times now that the product has now been listed as "on the boat".

Seriously, publishers have learned… No.  Publishers have been taught to withold information from the fan bases simply because a vocal minority of the fans on the internet have proven that they can't handle the information and will make a massive mess out of nothing because of inability to handle it.

-WJL



#7 Protege

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 08:30 AM

LethalDose said:

Actually, your OP for this thread and response possibly perfectly exemplifies exactly why they haven't posted SW RPG times/dates yet.  You're making the assumption that FFG's marketing is crap (e.g. "needs to go to Marketing 101") because they haven't posted any SW events for GenCon.

If you think this doesn't happen, I'd direct you to another thread, and see the posters practically crap themselves trying to figure out what it means for release times now that the product has now been listed as "on the boat".

Seriously, publishers have learned… No.  Publishers have been taught to withold information from the fan bases simply because a vocal minority of the fans on the internet have proven that they can't handle the information and will make a massive mess out of nothing because of inability to handle it.

-WJL

I guess I just don’t see the vilification of the OP like you do.  A few things. First of all, I have not found the “decision making process” behind this product to be overly stellar myself, so their lake of information for Gen Con could be for a lot of reasons but it is still strange “in my opinions” for such a large company.

As for the thread where everyone has “practically crap themselves?” I didn’t get that at all from that thread. I felt like it was a lot of excitement around the book and people having a fun discussion about “on the boat” and what it means.

Second of all, in my experience, publishers that remain secret and withhold information from fans always bites them. Example A) 4th edition D&D, Example B) L5R 4th edition, Example C), White Wolf from 2009 -2011. Keeping fans out of the loop is the fastest way of building resentment from fans. It’s a tried and true tradition. :)



#8 jhsjhs

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 04:57 AM

Ignoring the argument…

FFG, one of the games at the top of my gencon event wish list is this.  I hope you get some scheduled!  I would love to see what your team does with an rpg.

Fingers crossed!



#9 stuartgreenwell

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 06:25 AM

 

All, 

 

 

We can agree or disagree, but lets not degenerate into a flame-war.

 

 

Gen Con is one of the most important and influential markets for game companies in the world. And nothing is more important than getting games in front of your customers. My comment of "Someone needs to go to Marketing 101" was tounge-in-cheek.  FF knows the importance of marketing, they have 345 other events for gosh sakes.

 

But they FAIL at marketing their RPGs  Looking back on last years Gen Con, they ran 395 events. 293 board game events and 72 card game events.  ZERO RPG events.  

 

Surely this year would be different as the new Star Wars RPG has hit the scene. Alas, it looks like much the same.  Yes, Gen Con events can be changed up to the event, but that is not a good practice.  Event registration timelines are there for a reason, and companies look bad if they don't have their stuff together in time for registration.  And FF odiously does, as they planned out 345 events (no small task). I have no reason to believe they will add any SW RPG events if they have none planned now.  This planning takes time.  If they had 10 tables running already, I could see changes of adding 3 more, or minor things like that.  But not adding from zero.

 

I just want to know why their RPGs are getting ignored?  I will not spend the money to buy an RPG until I have tried it out, and Gen Con is generally where that happens.  There is no way for me to present quantifiable numbers on how Gen Con events translate to sales. But I can tell you there are qualitative repercussions. When I played some of the d6 SW games last year, there were talk around the tables of people looking forward to playing the new FF rule set. And I have been to more Gen Cons then I can remember, and this has happened over and over with other publishers as well. 

 

Donovan, your comment that they want to make sure books are on hand to sell would be a very poor marketing move if true.  Generally, the game is available and Gen Con only happens once a year.  Even if they didn't have a lot of stock to sell, why miss the marketing opportunity? People will play it, and if they love it, they will by it from their FLGS, Amazon, etc. 

 

And really, this is Star Wars.  They could make a lot of money running the events themselves.  There are 16 d20 Star Wars events and 61 d6 Star Wars events.  People love it, and they could probably fill as many tables as they could organize. It has been said that a Star Wars license is a license to print money.  So lets print some damn money!!!

 

And to LethalDose, I am not sure your experience with Gen Con, but they work out all the rooms beforehand (the point of having the events submitted way in advance).  And FF is a big sponser of Gen Con.  There is no way their room would become "unavailable" unless the hotel burned down. Even then, they would move them somewhere else, not cancel them. I can understand people reading too much into things and inferring things that shouldn't be inferred.  I am not predicting any doom and gloom for the SW RPG because of a lack of Gen Con events.  Star Wars can practically sell itself.  But it is a huge missed marketing opportunity, and one that FF apparently does every year for their RPGs.  

 

As Patrick Swayze famously said -  "Nobody puts Baby in a corner".



#10 Emirikol

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 06:43 AM

FFG generally shy's away from running RPGs at conventions.  That's why people are jumpy.



#11 stuartgreenwell

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 07:05 AM

Have they ever established why?

I could hazard a guess that they don't want to deal with the issues of finding GMs to run the game for people.  And while not an insignificant issue by any means, FF could accomplish that much easier then most smaller companies. Especially with the Star Wars brand.

But I don't want to speak for them. 

But I can speak for myself.  You are making an RPG to sell, I spend money on RPGs, if you provide me the opportunity to take it for a spin, you have a chance at getting my money if I like the game.

BTW, this doesn't just go for RPGs.  I tried for 2-3 Gen Cons in a row to get into the Conan Board Game to try it out.  Always sold out.  As such, I never played it, never bought it, even though I love Conan.  Whereas, Battlestar Galactaca I played, had such a fun time playing it, that it was on my game shelf a week after coming back from the convention.  I am not going to assume my situation fits all people, I know it doesn't.  Some people just don't buy games even if they like it.  And some people buy games sight unseen.  But, I know my population is significant.

 



#12 Emirikol

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 07:38 AM

I personally wish that they had the same gumption to take care of RPG fans as they do for boardgames.  FFG needs an RPGA.  A lot of companies smaller than them (which is now all companies sans maybe 2), can pull it off.



#13 stuartgreenwell

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 08:50 AM

Emirikol, I agree completly.  Paizo took a not-so-great game system (D&D 3x) and turned it into the most popular RPG through constant content, great story, and living game support. 

I have played Living games for many many years, and they always have a larger fan-base then the game sometimes deserves, because it is easily accessable.

If I can't play a game at home, and there is no support at the conventions, then why would I buy a game? 

 



#14 LethalDose

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 07:47 AM

In response to this:

Protege said:

 

LethalDose said:

 

Actually, your OP for this thread and response possibly perfectly exemplifies exactly why they haven't posted SW RPG times/dates yet.  You're making the assumption that FFG's marketing is crap (e.g. "needs to go to Marketing 101") because they haven't posted any SW events for GenCon.

If you think this doesn't happen, I'd direct you to another thread, and see the posters practically crap themselves trying to figure out what it means for release times now that the product has now been listed as "on the boat".

Seriously, publishers have learned… No.  Publishers have been taught to withold information from the fan bases simply because a vocal minority of the fans on the internet have proven that they can't handle the information and will make a massive mess out of nothing because of inability to handle it.

-WJL

 

 

I guess I just don’t see the vilification of the OP like you do.  A few things. First of all, I have not found the “decision making process” behind this product to be overly stellar myself, so their lake of information for Gen Con could be for a lot of reasons but it is still strange “in my opinions” for such a large company.

As for the thread where everyone has “practically crap themselves?” I didn’t get that at all from that thread. I felt like it was a lot of excitement around the book and people having a fun discussion about “on the boat” and what it means.

Second of all, in my experience, publishers that remain secret and withhold information from fans always bites them. Example A) 4th edition D&D, Example B) L5R 4th edition, Example C), White Wolf from 2009 -2011. Keeping fans out of the loop is the fastest way of building resentment from fans. It’s a tried and true tradition. :)

 

 

First, Vilifying?  That's a pretty ambitious jump from what I posted, but still not as ambitious as the conclusions the OP drew from FFG not posting RPG events 3 months in advance for GenCon (see more on that below).  I said I think he's wrong, and I gave reasons and counter-points.  That's not vilification, that's simply rhetoric & logic.

Second, the "Crap themselves" comment was probably overstating what happned in that particular thread, so, fine, my bad.  But that kind of rampant speculation which leads to horrifiic conclusions and absurd expectations has been occurring on these boards a lot.  Look through the histories of posters impotently trying to predict and argue when the product will arrive based on nother more than conjecture layered on more conjecture.  It's a mess the FFG wisely avoids.

Third, I should have phrased my cited post above to qualify the type of information being shared.  Information is typically good, but things almost always get out of hand when they try to share information that is preliminary, not finalized, in progress, being reviewed, etc etc etc.  THAT is what they have been taught to withhold.

Onto the OP's response…

What this is not, is a flame war.  Or at least I am not trying to engage in a flame war.  

What my posts are, is simply nothing more than rhetoric.

I would say that I'm sorry you don't like FFG's schedule and lack of RPG events, but honestly, I don't really care all that much.  However, I do think you're doing EXACTLY what you should do to express your opinion to the company: Not buying the product.

Now, I may be wrong in my interpretation of the schedule, meaning I'm not sure exactly what qualifies a structured event to be listed, but I'm gonna guess that they'll be demo'ing the product even though they don't have explicit events scheduled.  At GC '12, they were demo'ing the EotE Beta at their booth/pavilion/whatever in the exhibition hall from Friday afternoon on.  I can't find that anywhere in the program, but that's likely because it was a surprise reveal.  Hell, even Jay Little, the lead designer, was running demos, again, no listed event.

However, I also can't find it listed as an event that they were demo'ing the X-Wing game there, too.  

My point here is that you likely will/should have plenty of chances to play the game at GC '13, even if there are no events listed because they just aren't listing the on-going demos that they hold at their pavilion.

Anyway, you can go on, and complain that their marketing is a big fat fail based on (possibly intentional) omissions months before the schedule is finalized and get all riled up about it,

OR, you can just relax and realize that they're probably gonna be showing off their new product even if it hasn't shown up on schedule yet, or may not show up at all.

-WJL



#15 Emirikol

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 08:44 AM

stuartgreenwell said:

 

Emirikol, I agree completly.  Paizo took a not-so-great game system (D&D 3x) and turned it into the most popular RPG through constant content, great story, and living game support. I have played Living games for many many years, and they always have a larger fan-base then the game sometimes deserves, because it is easily accessable. If I can't play a game at home, and there is no support at the conventions, then why would I buy a game? 

 

 

 

One of my friends nailed down the CEO and quizzed him about this. I won't repeat what transpired except to say that FFG doesn't find it important, at all, to support RPGs at conventions or to participate on their forums.  Nothing personal I guess, but they just don't care about that kind of approach anymore. It probably has something to do with business decisions trumping "fans" I would imagine.

If you look at what all the other game companies do, especially upstart companies like Paizo, I agree, simply supporting your fans goes a long ways.  I think that starts at conventions and creating a human presence behind the "suits" (if there is such a thing in this industry ;)    

For a game such as this, simply having a demo scenario and ACTIVELY encouraging GMs to run stuff, goes a long ways towards getting that critical initial, lunatic fan base that grows into other kinds of "play and purchase"..instead of what I would call "purchase and cross your fingers and hope that it takes off" like that Marvel RPG fiasco that occurred with MWP.

Paizo has been smart enough now as to integrate their novels into their living play systems.  If you purchase one of the books, it confers into some kind of in-game roleplaying bit.  I can completely understand that kind of approach, but it actually requires that the people working at the game company are also FANS enough to go out and run these things and perhaps volunteer some time.  From my experience in business (yes, even in my line), mercenary employees won't do these kinds of things, nor will employees who are simply forced to work at conventions.  It takes some kind of other fandom employee and freelancers to step up to do this stuff.

Could it be too that FFG actively DISCOURAGES convention play for RPGs, just hoping that it will go away?  Is it such a loss for FFG to put out a "Call for GMs to run RPGs at conventions..we'll send you a link for a free download scenario" or whatever?  How about $10 credit?  Hell, for every person converted at a game convention, they'll sell $100 in product.  Seems to me that they need to OUTSOURCE their RPG convention promotion management as they just don't have the skill and/or motivation to pull it off themselves (imho).

[edit:  They are of course finally doing a free RPG day scenario for this, for which I am thankful.  They have the capability do do more however, they just don't care to:  http://www.fantasyfl...s.asp?eidn=4095]

jh

 

 

 



#16 Kallabecca

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 02:00 PM

Emirikol said:

One of my friends nailed down the CEO and quizzed him about this. I won't repeat what transpired except to say that FFG doesn't find it important, at all, to support RPGs at conventions or to participate on their forums.  Nothing personal I guess, but they just don't care about that kind of approach anymore. It probably has something to do with business decisions trumping "fans" I would imagine.

Not participate in their forums? Well that explains why these utter crap forums continue to be used… They take ages to load, if they load at all, and the built-in editor is crap. You have to go through several steps to paste text and links aren't autogenerated from text that starts with http:// or https://



#17 LethalDose

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 02:18 PM

Kallabecca said:

Emirikol said:

 

One of my friends nailed down the CEO and quizzed him about this. I won't repeat what transpired except to say that FFG doesn't find it important, at all, to support RPGs at conventions or to participate on their forums.  Nothing personal I guess, but they just don't care about that kind of approach anymore. It probably has something to do with business decisions trumping "fans" I would imagine.

 

 

Not participate in their forums? Well that explains why these utter crap forums continue to be used… They take ages to load, if they load at all, and the built-in editor is crap. You have to go through several steps to paste text and links aren't autogenerated from text that starts with http:// or https://

+1



#18 jhsjhs

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Posted 18 May 2013 - 01:03 AM

Demoing board games is so much easier than RPGs, I suppose this is believable.  It begs the question why they would get such an expensive property as sw, though.  Why bother if you weren't going to go all out?  We will see; the fact that they ran demos in their room in the icc as someone noted above is a good sign.  Maybe they just won't formalize it.



#19 Kallabecca

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Posted 18 May 2013 - 05:47 AM

jhsjhs said:

Demoing board games is so much easier than RPGs, I suppose this is believable.  It begs the question why they would get such an expensive property as sw, though.  Why bother if you weren't going to go all out?  We will see; the fact that they ran demos in their room in the icc as someone noted above is a good sign.  Maybe they just won't formalize it.

Because they have two board games each with several expansions for the license now to one RPG book.



#20 MrBaldwin

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 02:33 PM

Since there are no more tickest for the two Edge of the Empire events at Gencon anymore, I decided to take matters into my own hands and submit my own event.  It will be called The Rodian Raid, it is for 3-5 players, and it will be Thursday at 2pm.  I'm throwing this out there in case anyone on these boards is trying to figure out their Gencon schedule.  I will probably post again once it is officially accetped.






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