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Absol197

Trends, Statistics, and Predictions!

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3 hours ago, Nytwyng said:

My copy is awaiting pickup at a local store. The only question is whether the rain will let up enough that my wife (who works about a mile from said store) will be willing to stop and pick it up on her way home, or if I end up driving 30 minutes out of my way on my way home. :lol:

And she stopped to pick it up.

But it won’t be in-store until tomorrow. 

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Okay friends, I’ve been giving it some thought, and I think I’ve reached a conclusion that has a high probability of being accurate.  Unfortunately, it also has a 100% chance of sucking if it is :(

So here it is: the biggest question on all of our minds is: when is Fully Operational going to change to Shipping Now.  My guess is not until April, probably April 4.  And the reason is Star Wars: Legion.

Here’s the thing: FFG’s previous new Star Wars product, Destiny, did not really go over well, as far as I can tell.  Now, obviously, my information is limited, but at least in my area, Destiny just doesn’t sell.  My FLGS is the largest in our area, and has the widest selection of just about everything.  As an example, the owner recently told me that, in general, he orders about 25-30 of any new Star Wars RPG book that comes out; the next biggest FLGS in the area is probably ordering about 5, at most.  That’s the scale difference here.

So if someone is wanting to find a Destiny scene to join, our store is probably the best place…and there is none.  He told me that people occasionally but the starter kits, but very rarely buy any booster packs.  While I know every area’s tastes are different, if this is at all indicative of the general reaction, I would guess they’re not selling much of Destiny.

So that brings us to Legion: unlike a card game, I have to imagine that a miniatures game is much more expensive to produce, and FFG is tilting hard into Legion.  It’s big unveiling is coming up; we’ll probably see Legion products start shipping next week, possibly this week.

Since it’s important for Legion to do well (and even if I don’t play miniatures games, I do want it to do well, if only for FFG’s sake), I’m betting FFG doesn’t want to have any reason for stores to have to balance stocking Legion products with purchasing other new FFG products to stock.  If anything big and new comes out just before (or even just after) Legion, that could cut into the initial sales of the miniatures game.  So, my guess is that nothing big will be released between now and at least two weeks after Legion releases (March 22, it appears).

So that means our RPG books are on hold, and this is also my guess as to why Terrinoth hasn’t started shipping yet, too: Terrinoth is very big, the first setting book for Genesys, so they don’t want have their important, new product competing with their established products.

I hope I’m wrong, and that we’ll see FO change status tomorrow, but I have a feeling that this is why we’re not seeing any movement.  If there hadn’t been the massive shipping snafu, then FO would never have been initially delayed, and there wouldn’t have been a need to decide between the two.  But there was a shipping snafu, and it caused the two to be ready for shipping at about the same time, so they had to decide which to prioritize.  And the more expensive, potentially more lucrative option won out.

We can see evidence of this in the way the Upcoming products are staggered: there are currently 22 products On the Boat: eleven Legion products, our three books, and eight others.  If we break the other products down by the date they went On the Boat, we get the following:

Status Date | Number of Products
01/18/2018 | 1
02/01/2018 | 4
02/09/2018 | 2
02/05/2018 | 1

So, assuming most products take the same time to boat (six to seven weeks), that would put the products that changed status on February 1 ready for shipping on February 15, which would mean a release one week after Legion.  The January 18 product, incidentally, is the WEG 30th Anniversary Edition.  So clearly, with all of their new,  non-delayed products, they’ve purposefully staggered them so as to be able to release them after Legion.

My guess is that, because of the delay in the new Star Wars books, they rushed them to get them released as quickly as possible, and the unfortunate whims of timing put them as ready at the same time that they’re ramping up for their new, big release, and so they had to make them wait a bit longer :(

Edited by Absol197

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3 hours ago, Absol197 said:

Okay friends, I’ve been giving it some thought, and I think I’ve reached a conclusion that has a high probability of being accurate.  Unfortunately, it also has a 100% chance of sucking if it is :(

So here it is: the biggest question on all of our minds is: when is Fully Operational going to change to Shipping Now.  My guess is not until April, probably April 4.  And the reason is Star Wars: Legion.

 

Saw this coming after they announced the March launch date for this and all the hype they've been pouring on this game.   FFG is a board game company for the most part, who dabbles in RPG lines. They will always prioritize the board games they develop since it is their bread and butter.  

<<Redacted Rant as to not derail this thread>>.

Edited by TrystramK

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This all seems pretty indicative of a small company that has more work than people and needs to keep that revenue up for their corporate overlords.  I won't begrudge FFG a wait time for RPG books as long as their business model allows them to keep producing them.  Better late than never, they say.  

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1 hour ago, themensch said:

This all seems pretty indicative of a small company that has more work than people and needs to keep that revenue up for their corporate overlords.  I won't begrudge FFG a wait time for RPG books as long as their business model allows them to keep producing them.  Better late than never, they say.  

Agreed. The only thing I'm worried about is them losing the license. They're pushing out the career books faster now (well, relatively speaking) and haven't announced any other adventures or sector books. Dawn of Rebellion is cool, but to be frank, it seems like a blatant tie-in for Rogue One/Rebels in order to get the line more attention. Which is good! But I'm worried it means the license is coming up for renewal and might not get picked up again, or else maybe they're tying up loose ends in order to move on to a second edition.

Incidentally, Knights of Fate seems to be flying under everyone's radar. Any guesses, Absol?

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In an effort not to derail Absol's thread I'll make a thread to address some of the replies above.   

31 minutes ago, CaptainRaspberry said:

Incidentally, Knights of Fate seems to be flying under everyone's radar. Any guesses, Absol?

I don't know that anyone can accurately guess at this point CaptainRaspberry, since the books aren't arriving in any consistent intervals any more.  The  announcement article says Q2 of this year.  Assuming what Absol has postulated is true, we won't see any of the backlogged books until at least two weeks after Legion launch.  So that puts us at April 5th minimally for books to start arriving again.  If we are lucky we can see a week between releases, so by the end of april we'd have all 3.  I will wager that, based on Absol's data from prior releases, that this is unlikely, and we will likely see them staggered at about 2-3 weeks apart to being on the shelf.   

So Knights of Fate will likely hit store shelves very late May to mid June.

Is this what you are tracking Absol?

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56 minutes ago, CaptainRaspberry said:

Agreed. The only thing I'm worried about is them losing the license.

That's my fear, too.  Oh, how many ill-fated RPG lines that had grandiose plans and adoring fans, only to lose funding and close up before they could finish the source material.  Heartbreaking, really.  

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23 minutes ago, themensch said:

That's my fear, too.  Oh, how many ill-fated RPG lines that had grandiose plans and adoring fans, only to lose funding and close up before they could finish the source material.  Heartbreaking, really.  

I don't think that is really an issue.   In this day and age of the internet,  I can't see Disney pulling the license on FFG as long as they are receiving a decent revenue stream, especially with no backlash from the fan base.  Of course the delays in products are certainly not helping with the funds.  I don't know that FFG is "Funded", I imagine they paid for the Star Wars license quite dearly.  I think it is more likely that when the license comes up for renewal, and if Disney opts not to renew it, we'll see an announcement similar to what FFG did with the Warhammer 40k lines. 

 

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1 hour ago, TrystramK said:

I don't think that is really an issue.   In this day and age of the internet,  I can't see Disney pulling the license on FFG as long as they are receiving a decent revenue stream, especially with no backlash from the fan base.  Of course the delays in products are certainly not helping with the funds.  I don't know that FFG is "Funded", I imagine they paid for the Star Wars license quite dearly.  I think it is more likely that when the license comes up for renewal, and if Disney opts not to renew it, we'll see an announcement similar to what FFG did with the Warhammer 40k lines. 

 

I think it's more a matter of time an not inclination - IIRC, FFG only has the license until 2021.    While I'm hardly a business magnate, I'd imagine that if FFG continues to be good stewards of the brand, they'll get to keep playing ball.  

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1 minute ago, themensch said:

I think it's more a matter of time an not inclination - IIRC, FFG only has the license until 2021.    While I'm hardly a business magnate, I'd imagine that if FFG continues to be good stewards of the brand, they'll get to keep playing ball.  

Right, all of those license agreements have sunset clauses like that.  I also agree about the good stewardship being key for them to retain the license.  

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6 minutes ago, TrystramK said:

Right, all of those license agreements have sunset clauses like that.  I also agree about the good stewardship being key for them to retain the license.  

Right, and that means: Make Money, Enhance The Brand - in that order.  If X-wing was plastic crack, imagine what Legion holds.  

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32 minutes ago, TrystramK said:

Right, all of those license agreements have sunset clauses like that.  I also agree about the good stewardship being key for them to retain the license.  

For the record, I think they have plenty of reason to retain the license. The moneymakers are always the miniatures games, so the RPG is more like a hobby. Though the letter included in Dawn of Rebellion from Dave Filoni makes it pretty clear there are some people at LFL who support it wholeheartedly.

25 minutes ago, themensch said:

Right, and that means: Make Money, Enhance The Brand - in that order.  If X-wing was plastic crack, imagine what Legion holds.  

Exactly. And I'm okay with a delayed schedule if it means there's more money and confidence for more releases in the future.

My anxiety mostly comes from how invisible the whole process is. The change in how the books are released could be caused by any number of factors: the pivot to Legion, a greater focus on in-house properties like Genesys, a planned second edition, or worries about retaining the license. If they have it through 2021 (is there a source for that, incidentally?) then it makes sense they want to have the base parts of the game finished, meaning career books and some era books to tie into recent developments of the property, just in case. Three years should be enough time to see both a prequel and sequel trilogy book, if not a couple of adventures.

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16 minutes ago, CaptainRaspberry said:

My anxiety mostly comes from how invisible the whole process is. 

This is the reason I comment the way I do from time to time.  We're powerless to prevent this, so maybe it's just best to accept that this is the way it is and move on.  It pains me to see folks getting riled up like I used to, only to be squashed by the inevitable truth that we'll never know.  

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34 minutes ago, robus said:

If there was a 2nd edition it would only be the core books right?

Not likely. And depending on how big the differences are the og supplements might not be compatible.  though I don't think we have to worry about it for a little while.

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36 minutes ago, robus said:

If there was a 2nd edition it would only be the core books right?

If you look at Dark Heresy 2, you can see that FFG has experience in how not to make a second edition be successful in the face of an expiring license.

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It will be interesting to see where SWRPG will head now that the final career book has been announced.  I am surprised that the AoR and FaD did not get additional general sourcebooks like EotE did (Suns of Fortune and Lords of Nal Hutta).  So maybe that is on the horizon.  Also, Age of Rebellion was sold as the first of a new line of Era Sourcebooks, so maybe that is where things will be headed for now.  I can't see them wanting to relase a second edition so soon after releasing the last career book for the current edition.  Part of me feels that they will wind down all work on SWRPG in order to focus on Genysis and their own IP based expansions of that system (such as Runebound and Android) which come without the added cost and burden of licensing.

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8 hours ago, CaptainRaspberry said:

Agreed. The only thing I'm worried about is them losing the license. They're pushing out the career books faster now (well, relatively speaking) and haven't announced any other adventures or sector books. Dawn of Rebellion is cool, but to be frank, it seems like a blatant tie-in for Rogue One/Rebels in order to get the line more attention. Which is good! But I'm worried it means the license is coming up for renewal and might not get picked up again, or else maybe they're tying up loose ends in order to move on to a second edition.

Incidentally, Knights of Fate seems to be flying under everyone's radar. Any guesses, Absol?

Hey, I acknowledged it when the article came out :P !  There were a bunch of posts about it!  I just... haven't added it to the first post yet, because things are basically un-predictable right now (and because we have very little information .  I've had countless theories, made dozens of predictions, and they've all been flawed in one way or another.  So I'm waiting for the moment, until we see how Knights of Fate starts acting.  I do have an initial prediction I posted on the day it was announced: July 26.

7 hours ago, TrystramK said:

In an effort not to derail Absol's thread I'll make a thread to address some of the replies above.   

I don't know that anyone can accurately guess at this point CaptainRaspberry, since the books aren't arriving in any consistent intervals any more.  The  announcement article says Q2 of this year.  Assuming what Absol has postulated is true, we won't see any of the backlogged books until at least two weeks after Legion launch.  So that puts us at April 5th minimally for books to start arriving again.  If we are lucky we can see a week between releases, so by the end of april we'd have all 3.  I will wager that, based on Absol's data from prior releases, that this is unlikely, and we will likely see them staggered at about 2-3 weeks apart to being on the shelf.   

So Knights of Fate will likely hit store shelves very late May to mid June.

Is this what you are tracking Absol?

As I said, my initial prediction is for late July, but I have precious little to go on for that.  There is one important thing to note though: when Unlimited Power was announced on September 22, the announcement article gave a Q2 2018 release.  But as you mentioned, the announcement for Knights of Fate gave a Q2 2018 release, as well.  We can think of this as FFG doing a little bit of talking to us.

By giving both the same release estimate, they were essentially saying that they expected Unlimited Power to take between 195 and 279 days (a moderate delay) to release, while they expect Knights of Fate to only take between 52 days (unheard of!) and 136 days (very average).  By reading between the lines a bit, we can see that with the Mystic book, FFG was saying, "We haven't forgotten you, but we still have some things that need to be worked out before we can release more books."  However, with the Warrior Book, they're more clearly saying, "Okay, we've finally got everything sorted, we're back to business as usual."

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1 minute ago, Swordbreaker said:

Did we ever fill out the missing products in the product code numbers?

Nope; we're still missing SWE15, SWE17, SWE18, and SWE19, as well as SWA52 and SWF51.  Knights of Fate did fill out one of the missing product codes, but we still have another gap.

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40 minutes ago, Absol197 said:

Nope; we're still missing SWE15, SWE17, SWE18, and SWE19, as well as SWA52 and SWF51.  Knights of Fate did fill out one of the missing product codes, but we still have another gap.

does the less of a gap in F&D and Age give you a clue on the edge missing titles?
Pretty sure one of the edge titles has to do with the region around Tatooine.

Edited by Daeglan

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47 minutes ago, Daeglan said:

does the less of a gap in F&D and Age give you a clue on the edge missing titles?
Pretty sure one of the edge titles has to do with the region around Tatooine.

Not really; Edge has a different product code sequence than Age and Force do - Edge has all the books from 5 to 16, then three mystery books, then all of the Core specialization decks, then the sourcebook specialization decks.

The missing book at SWE15 is clearly the missing Region book, but the other three after No Disintegrations we have no reference for.  Initially I might have said that those were the Era books, but since Dawn of Rebellion is listed as a SWR item, that idea is shot.

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