Thursday, October 2, 2014

How GW should revive Blood Bowl

So I was reading a thread on the BoLS forum that I really liked. For those of you who are the no links or TLDR crowd, it basically states that GW may bring back Specialist Games, or at least the more popular ones, since they have filed copyrights on currently non-existing lines. Now this may just be to protect their old IP if they ever want to bring it back, however even that means there is a chance it will come back.

Now I LOVE SPECIALIST GAMES. I hate that they went away. GW should have continued to support them (part 2). Now I am not going to get into all those reasons here, especially not why they should dump LoTR/Hobbit, since you can read all of that in all these links I have provided. This is simply a musing on how I believe they could most successfully release the most promising SG that they have.

This is why I play Ogres.
This game is super great and is really one of the best rule sets ever produced by GW? Is it super balanced or fair. No, BUT the main rules allow for disasters to befall anyone, meaning that Halflings can manage to beat Skaven on any given Sunday.

The core problem a lot of people site is that SG games could detract from core games sales. While I do not believe this as people tend to build collections over time and expand in a hobby, lets assume this is true. Blood Bowl is in a unique position in that it is halfway between board and wargame in that it would not detract from WHFB or 40k since it is so completely stylistically different. It would be like saying FIFA detracts from sales of HALO, or minivans from semi-trucks. They are completely unrelated genres/types of vehicles. You get completely different things out of each of them. So in this sense BB is safe IMO.

Now that I have established why BB is a perfect candidate for re-release, I believe this would be the best way to go about dropping the game.

1- Make Team Boxes. The entire team is included. 16-20 models. A typical core team of each race. Include in each box a team roster (not one you fill out for people unfamiliar w/ BB. This would be the stats, cost and skills of the different player types on the team).
2- Make a core box game. Do not include any models. Just a rulebook, board, templates, dice, etc. etc.
3- Sell The box game with a drop down menu to include the teams of your choice. Much in the same way Forgeworld sold landraiders with chapter specific doors of your choice or Titans with weapons of you choice.  This allows players to get into the game with the teams they want, since unlike Space Hulk where you have the same iterations of teams every game, BB has many factions and players tend to have just one or two teams they play over seasons.
While this is great, what if I don't want humans or orcs?
4- Sell additional teams, booster clam packs/character clam packs separately. The boosters would just be the same sculpts as already in the team boxes.
Or a Realm of Battle Stadium
This really helps to limit the size of the product range, reducing investment and risk, while still maximizing potential sales and profits. It is not like WHFB or 40k where people will slowly build a faction over time. Someone is going to sit down and buy a whole team to begin with.

Team boxes can be released in waves like their current system of model releases. 4-6 teams for the initial wave, 2-3 after that.

There is obviously a demand for fantasy football games. Look at dreadball and all the 3rd party companies that make fantasy football teams (there is even a female dwarf team from Warlord Games)

If GW really is the best at producing high quality minis and beating out the competition, they could really corner this market fast by giving easy accessibility to plastic full teams and still manage a small product line... that is hopefully highly lucrative.