Thursday, January 3, 2013

I owe the National Newspapers of Ireland €1000. Allegedly.

My gold. Mine
I've enjoyed the Christmas break and hopefully you have too. Having lined up an article about the other game systems I'm playing at the moment and how much I hate my xbox, I was completely blown away by something I read online. A friend passed this to me on Facebook and I had to laugh. Eventually.

A solicitor firm in Dublin (McGarr's) have pieced together a brilliant story about how the media (or meedja as they're known in certain parts) have tried to come up with alternative routes of generating money, which ended up with them issuing a demand to a women's domestic violence charity for them to cough up for linking to a newspaper's website a story about their fundraising efforts that had appeared in the print version of said newspaper. I'm not joking: see the link here and feel free to criticise, review or ask questions in the comments below.

So I figured that I'd do my bit and see if I could get them to issue me with a warning. Apparently 26 links to various websites of members of the National Newspapers of Ireland means they'll charge me €1350. Which is £1094 or $1767 at the time of writing thanks to (I hope they don't charge too). This got me thinking about things that more traditional forms of businesses are doing to keep their profits coming in: see Ruport Murdoch's losing battle with Google (and Chrome and Firefox's Murdoch-block app) and I thought of GW, seeing as they are the biggest of the Titans when it comes to miniature wargaming and some of the many things that they've been doing in, or not doing, in order to keep their shareholders happy.

Here are a few more stories that will help to bring me up to the magic 26 I need to rack up over €1000 in charges for linking to their websites. I wonder what they'll try to do when it comes to students and researchers wishing to link to their stories in academic publications?

I do hope that's 26 right there. I have linked to some red tops (or rags, insert word as appropriate) which I normally wouldn't but I have tried to get an even spread so as not to leave any spectrum of Irish media publications out. I would honestly love to hear from the NNI as I reckon I would be able to win a case by defending myself in a courtroom on these charges, let alone having any half-assed legal team defending me (and I'm well aware of the maxim that the man that represents himself has a fool for a client).

Now we move onto GW. Aside from the high start-up costs associated with 40k, are the any other things that you think are letting the hobby down on GW's part? One thing I reckon is failing abysmally at tie-ins - one example being with the release of the Space Marine computer game and missing an opportunity to do a Captain Titus mini with rules either via WD, or GW's website (because God forbid they get extra sales or traffic out of either).

Another thing is their battleforces. With Warmachine and Malifaux you get a proper starter set for your games so you can simply glue everything together and get gaming right away whereas GW's ones expect you to buy buy said box, a Codex, a rulebook and a HQ choice (assuming you can't make one out of the minis in the box already) which massively increases the cost of starting and drives people to other game systems like those above or Infinity. Free rules? An army for under €100? Yes, please.

I wonder whether things would have been different had they listened to Alessio by putting all of the basic lists into the back of the rulebook and then having the Codices expand upon them ala Warmahordes. Even putting the unit entries for the units you get in the battleforces so you can play games right away might make them appeal more. As would making them all legal game forces by adding a HQ to each one. What would that be in total - an A4 page printed on both sides and a single model with a sprue for options? Doesn't sound like it would break the bank for them.

There a myriad other things GW could do to improve things for fans (non iOS digital products, more army lists via White Dwarf, re-releasing and supporting Specialist games etc) and these would all help to bring both new and older gamers back into the fold. As one guy in my local FLGS said to me recently: 'You can't walk into a shop and get started in a GW game for 50 quid anymore, which is fucking ridiculous'. Much like McGarr's story with the newspaper monoliths 'protecting' their interests, I find myself agreeing with them on both counts.

So pretty.
So much so that I've been keeping my money for expanding my Malifaux crews and Monster. See the Phoenix above. If you've any thoughts, feel free to post them below.


  1. Nice post Merv, and Happy New Year!

    1. Happy New Year Jason. Cheers for dropping by. I do like to break up the monotony of 40k posting by throwing in topics on other interests I have to keep me sane and hopefully entertain the readers. :D

  2. Hey Merv!
    I was going to ask your opinion of the newspaper linking thing. Saves me a trip! :P
    Kinda reminds me how IRMA tried the same a few years ago with downloaders and people with ipods.
    Nothing unusual from Ireland, tbh…


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