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About R2Servo

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  1. There is such a thing. We have (had) one. I think my kid pop'd it. ...said Lord Vader to the Emperor...
  2. There is a maxim amongst Salesmen : "If they want it badly enough, they will buy it." It's the job of marketing to make them want it.
  3. Hello Boris Let me try to explain, from a marketers viewpoint, what I think might explain the price-point. Quick background - I worked in a new products marketing group for a big pharmaceutical company. Health care products are very different from entertainment products, but the basic marketing practise remain the same. To begin, when bringing a new product to market, the marketer looks for the target demograph. The demograph is mapped, price-point is assigned, and a sales projection is made. Sales projection usually defines budget These are basic Marketing 101 principles. (This is why it will be very difficult for FFG to change the price - they already have factored the sales into the 2015 annual numbers....) Now, I can't remember if there was a number given for total sold X-Wing games. By total sold, we refer ONLY to what FFG sells, either directly to the consumer or through a distributor. For some reason, the number 12,000+ keeps coming up in my head for the initial run - I don't know where I read that, but it is in keeping with what Games Design Workshop's game runs from the late 90's would suggest: in their case, 10,000 was their usual number. Assume for analysis' sake that 12,000 is a reliable number. After material and manufacturing costs, distribution costs, advertising and administrative costs, and licensing fees, FFG can expect between 20% and 30% return as profit from the core game. That's averaged to about $120,000. Obviously, FFG needs to sell many expansion packs - this is where their bread and butter is made, as buyers will purchase multiple packs. Let's assume, as others here have said, that the expansions are making the majority of FFG X-Wing profits. How does this affect ARMADA? From what I can deduce, FFG decided to aim for a narrower market. You made an observation along the lines of would it not be better to sell 200,000 sets at $50, which I think was a logical question. However, there might not be a mappable target market that large - it's much more likely that the market is estimated as 12,000 and under. If I were to play it safe (as FFG seems to do) I would define the Armada target demograph as "Male, post-college, technical employed and older" (unlike the X-Wing demograph, which is more "Male, post secondary/high school, part-time employed and older"), in which case, the ARMADA target market might be more like 5,000. The number 5000 might seem absurdly small, but sound business sense is to minimise risk. If the first run sells out, FFG can always make more. 5,000 ARMADA core sets sold will net appox $120,000 (about $25 profit per set, assuming %25 profit). Actual number will tend higher as FFG sells directly to consumer. Still, the number matches (approximately) that of the initial X-Wing run. This is very much speculation on my part - one of the great gaming industry constants is never quite knowing the size of the market, because the gaming industry is individually small and fragmented. Even a "big" game company like GW is easliy swat-able by Amazon (q.v. "Space Marine") and this small nature makes reliable external data either hard to get, or very expensive, or both. Also effecting the target demograph is the unavoidable conclusion that ARMADA will be competing against X-Wing. This is why I think the 5000 is not an unreasonable number. Whether 4 out of 10 X-Wing players carries over to ARMADA remains to be seen.
  4. I don't think they were required to make a new licensing agreement: Lucasfilms agreement with FFG would transfer over with all the other rights (unless Disney or LFL wanted to break it). However, contracting a new product print run with the manufacturer in China would probably require a new contract agreement, and the trend is for the Chinese to raise their prices as the business relationship develops. Geesh, I'm posting a lot. I'm going back to lurking.
  5. Why would Disney increase the cost of the license because a product is popular? I've never signed a major licensing agreement but I can't see the logic in increasing the price just because something is popular. The better X-Wing and now Armada sells, the better for Disney, because that is effectively free advertising for Star Wars. Your logic is impeccable - and is completely wasted on Hollywood. One of the reasons that Babylon 5 Wars was discontinued was because Paramount jacked up the licensing fees, as there were new movies/series planned. The owners at Agents of Gaming made an argument along the same line as yours, and were told by the studio rep that the gaming hobby was a very small percent of the targeted demograph and income. Something similar happened to West End Games' license, in that the upcoming films caused 20th C. Fox to increase the license a lot (there were other factors involved in WEG, but they came to a head a bit later.) I don't think Disney would bump up a license as a result of a transfer of ownership, especially when you consider the vast amounts of dollars (think "Carl Sagan") of profit at stake, with all the rest of the merchandising, plus theatre and dvd revenues - that *could* change once FFG's license is up for renewal. And *that* might be why FFG is launching Armada now...to use the license for all it's worth. I'm not insisting that this the reason, but the clever lads at FFG don't seem to be standing still, waiting.
  6. I agree - a new print run is reassuring, and I think it's better business to proceed with caution than reckless abandon. I brought it up because I was weighing strategies behind the pricing of Armada, and just today I noticed a FLGS was offering a "weekend only" %20 off price on the Tantive IV. http://www.shopofmagic.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=52&Itemid=68 Mind you, just because one shop is trying something extra to shift a product doesn't mean anyone else is having the same issue. If it becomes wide-spread, it's usually an indication that sales (at retail level) are dropping off. I have my CR90, but I'd like another before too long.
  7. I'm breaking my usual practise of quietly lurking to make a few observations. Firstly, I sympathise with those who are experiencing sticker-shock at the core set's price, especially when I think it's likely that I'll be buying two sets. I remember playing with just one X-Wing core set and I almost gave up on the game then and there. That said, there are any number of factors influencing Armada's core set price point. Besides those already outlined (quite competently) it may be that sales of the huge ships for X-Wing have dropped off, and FFG is looking to bring in their break even money sooner on what might be a slower-selling product... ...Or... FFG is attempting inventory control with a higher price point. Possibly they're trying to avoid the out-of-stock incidents from 2013... ...Or... I think the issue is exactly what we're seeing - higher priced components and manufacturing process, transport and warehousing costs, with the usual business mark up. Possibly complicated by the Chinese manufacturer negotiating a new contract and raising their price - a usual way of doing business in PRC. Back in the day, I used to play Star Wars capital ships using the die-cast star destroyer models on flight stands, along with Micro Machine MC80's and suchlike, using a variation of the Full Thrust rules. All sorts of fun, and much cheaper, too. But I still think I'll be buying Armada - though I'll certainly wait til I can get a demo game in.
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