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Author Topic: Support Your FLGS  (Read 1954 times)

HappyDaze

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #30 on: January 12, 2021, 01:35:14 pm »
I brought up PbtA games and the staff just shrugged like I asked for Vibranium.
They have Vibranium in stock?

sureshot

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #31 on: January 13, 2021, 11:16:33 pm »
That and the owner doesn't want ttrpgs played in his shop "because we don't buy stuff". Our reply? Stock product other than D&D5e, PF2e and Starfinder. I brought up PbtA games and the staff just shrugged like I asked for Vibranium.

I can kind of understand why he just carries the popular stuff because it sells. Lesser known or worse obscure rpgs just sit on shelves gathering dust in many rpg stores. It is a business after all and not a library. Especially with the Drivethrurpg and Amazon it's a recipe for financial suicide imo. Even my FLGs downsized much of their stock about five years ago because most of it was not selling. They had a big sale took a loss and made some money on the discounted product. They still sell other rpgs beyond the ones you listed above maybe a handful.

Still the owner while within his right especially if your not paying anything to play games to ask you to leave. Even if I think he is a major fucking asshole. One in my are allows Tabletop rpgs to be played though depending on the size of the group 3-5$ per person per session. If I owned a store I would order any rpg a client was interested in except the buyer would have to leave at least 30-50% deposit on the product. Absolutely non-negotiable I'm not a charity nor a library. If the same person keeps buying and returning product on a regular basis that person can go elsewhere to buy.

rocksfalleverybodydies

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #32 on: January 14, 2021, 12:42:42 am »
Thondor, nice to see some Canadian initiatives on keeping the LGS concept alive.
To be honest, the last time I was a major frequenter in a LGS store in T.O. was Grey Legion when it was still around.
It had a massive collection of old Revell model kits in the basement for some inexplicable reason.
It was strange things like this that gave these stores character.  They just seemed more charming back then.

Used to be going into a LGS was kind of a thrill as you never knew what you would stumble on in the back used shelves and sometimes find something really unique and rare.  Now with eBay etc. it's hard to find anything surprising and unexpected anymore.

One thing that would definitely interest me is if LGS's tapped into the Kickstarter market and bought things in bulk so as a Canadian I could save on some of the outlandish shipping costs charged.  That would get me back in the stores.

Honestly, other than Hairy T and a few others, I didn't really think the Ontario LGS scene was doing that well anymore for RPG's as most of the stores diversified into comics and MTG stuff like Silver Snail did and relegated the RPG stuff to a shelf in the corner.  I would buy stuff from a store that was owned by a friend in the beaches but it didn't last too long unfortunately due to the rental rates being as they are there.

I'll certainly check out what you have in your CDG Marketplace catalogue and see if anything strikes my interest to help support you though.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2021, 12:46:26 am by rocksfalleverybodydies »

Rob Necronomicon

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #33 on: January 14, 2021, 08:15:06 am »
I'm  like Spinachat. I like to support people on KS too...

However, I stopped buying dead tree stuff years ago and now I only buy pdfs. Which means dealing wit the dreaded drivethru behemoth. Where possible I try to buy from the creators themselves (if they have a website).


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HappyDaze

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #34 on: January 14, 2021, 08:58:42 am »
That and the owner doesn't want ttrpgs played in his shop "because we don't buy stuff". Our reply? Stock product other than D&D5e, PF2e and Starfinder. I brought up PbtA games and the staff just shrugged like I asked for Vibranium.

I can kind of understand why he just carries the popular stuff because it sells. Lesser known or worse obscure rpgs just sit on shelves gathering dust in many rpg stores. It is a business after all and not a library. Especially with the Drivethrurpg and Amazon it's a recipe for financial suicide imo. Even my FLGs downsized much of their stock about five years ago because most of it was not selling. They had a big sale took a loss and made some money on the discounted product. They still sell other rpgs beyond the ones you listed above maybe a handful.

Still the owner while within his right especially if your not paying anything to play games to ask you to leave. Even if I think he is a major fucking asshole. One in my are allows Tabletop rpgs to be played though depending on the size of the group 3-5$ per person per session. If I owned a store I would order any rpg a client was interested in except the buyer would have to leave at least 30-50% deposit on the product. Absolutely non-negotiable I'm not a charity nor a library. If the same person keeps buying and returning product on a regular basis that person can go elsewhere to buy.
A store I used to buy from would give me 15% off if I paid in full when preordering a game. I went with them every time even when I could get a slightly better deal from Amazon. The store may not have made quite as much money off of me, but they knew I'd run demos of anything they asked and my group would always buy from their snacks & drinks for in-store games. As a side benefit, they always gave me first crack at any defective products that came in (like an L5R book with the pages bound upside down) that they would sell for 25% of cover price. Good people, I miss them.

Thondor

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #35 on: January 14, 2021, 11:06:08 am »
Thondor, nice to see some Canadian initiatives on keeping the LGS concept alive.
To be honest, the last time I was a major frequenter in a LGS store in T.O. was Grey Legion when it was still around.
It had a massive collection of old Revell model kits in the basement for some inexplicable reason.
It was strange things like this that gave these stores character.  They just seemed more charming back then.

Used to be going into a LGS was kind of a thrill as you never knew what you would stumble on in the back used shelves and sometimes find something really unique and rare.  Now with eBay etc. it's hard to find anything surprising and unexpected anymore.

I made it to Grey Region a few times before it closed (what was that 2009?), I think I picked up either 1e MM2 or a 2e Montrous Compedium binder from them that year.

There still are some stores that you can wander into and get that feeling, but is more about seeing so much cool stuff in one place.

One thing that would definitely interest me is if LGS's tapped into the Kickstarter market and bought things in bulk so as a Canadian I could save on some of the outlandish shipping costs charged.  That would get me back in the stores.

Honestly, other than Hairy T and a few others, I didn't really think the Ontario LGS scene was doing that well anymore for RPG's as most of the stores diversified into comics and MTG stuff like Silver Snail did and relegated the RPG stuff to a shelf in the corner.  I would buy stuff from a store that was owned by a friend in the beaches but it didn't last too long unfortunately due to the rental rates being as they are there.

I'll certainly check out what you have in your CDG Marketplace catalogue and see if anything strikes my interest to help support you though.

I've been talking to some publishers about helping fulfill their Kickstarters on the Canadian side, and taking on extra books to help move into retailers. It's an exciting prospect.

I think a lot of people blame stores for not getting in more RPG material, without realizing how much just isn't in traditional distribution at all. Up here there are some gems that will literally go to conventions across the border and bring back books, or pay hefting shipping from IPR, but it isn't a surprise that many stores do not do that.

There usually seems to be at least 1 store in a major city that works at keeping a wider selection of RPGs. In Edmonton, Warp One is like that. Ottawa Fandom II, with a couple others fairly close (Red Dragon Comics & Games seems to be heading in this direction, and one of the Comic Book Shoppe locations has had good selection.)

You mentioned Hairy T, but I'd add 401 Games, and perhaps The Sword & Board in Toronto. Comic Warehouse out in Brampton. 

Lot's of other good stores that I didn't mention, and others that I am not aware of I am sure.
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Brad

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #36 on: January 14, 2021, 11:11:55 am »
There were two gaming stores in town, one which closed because they pretty much refused to have anything in stock and always reverted to the old "we can order it for you" shtick. A buddy of mine asked them how long it would take to get a particular boardgame, they said a couple weeks, he found it on Amazon next-day for like 20% cheaper, so what would be the point in even ordering from them? A physical store with no stock would be better closing up and just setting up some sort of website, honestly. Pointless.

The other gaming store has 5th edition D&D and that's it. I no longer play 5th edition, and even if I did I have almost all the books except the ones that came out in the past year. When I asked about other games, the staff looked at me as if I was speaking martian; they didn't even know other RPGs existed.

So, yeah. Fuck the FLGS, they don't even have the F part of their name because for the most part the people working there are more interested in watching anime and playing warhammer than being bothered with any questions. Never seen a more unhelpful group of store clerks in my life.

Another thing...I have thousands of RPG books, and my wife told me I should probably start selling stuff before buying anything else because we're running out of room. I agree. Plus, anything I do buy is all OSR crap I have to get off KS or Drivethru, and the gaming store won't sell that stuff, so again fuck 'em.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2021, 11:13:35 am by Brad »

Steven Mitchell

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #37 on: January 14, 2021, 02:35:16 pm »
I walk into my FLGS 2-4 times a year to see if they've got around to supporting me.  They never have.  So I don't see why I should support them.  (Beyond regularly checking to see if things have changed, which is a kind of small support they get because they are friendly.)   They've been around for some time.  The store is never empty.  Probably they are supporting some people and the favor is returned.  Plus, I might be kind of difficult to support.  So no animosity or expectations on my part, but by the same token I feel absolutely zero need to help them out merely because they are a game store that is both friendly and local. 

If the only fishing you do is with a cane pole and worms in a pond then you don't need the bass pro shop.  No reasonable person would even suggest that because you fish and they run a shop that caters to fisherman that you should give them your patronage somehow, if they don't sell anything that you want.  It's only gamers that try to create this idea that gamers are some kind of special case that all need to look out for one another no matter what their particular interests and circumstances.

Eirikrautha

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #38 on: January 14, 2021, 02:52:58 pm »
It's only gamers that try to create this idea that gamers are some kind of special case that all need to look out for one another no matter what their particular interests and circumstances.

Well, that's the genesis of some of the best and worst in our hobby.  When RPGs were less popular (and those of us who played them were looked at as "weird"), there was both an affirmation and encouragement from the insular nature of the community.  We did need to look out for the other members of the hobby.  Unfortunately, it's this same behavior that led to gamers not immediately exiling the toxic groups that infiltrated the hobby (of which SJWs are just the most prominent today).  So while it worked as a survival mechanism when the hobby was small, it's proven to be a vector of infection and disease now that we've gotten large enough that we can't say no to the people who really deserve negation...

GameDaddy

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #39 on: January 14, 2021, 03:14:47 pm »
I walk into my FLGS 2-4 times a year to see if they've got around to supporting me.

This. Exactly this. I'm like, You have a used or old school gaming section? No. ....Oh Well. ...Byyye!

This started back in the day though, more than forty years ago now. Super happy to see new D&D books and supplements. Super happy to see games from a wide variety of publishers in a gaming store. Would drop hundreds of dollars in spending sprees several times a year at such stores. About 1980, 1981 I stop seeing regular D&D products my my FLGS, and much less wargames. Now all I can buy is AD&D. Pretty soon I stop seeing other games, and only see TSR products, except in the venerable gaming stores, whose owners know that having different games and supplements appeals to the long tail.

Then the big companies go bankrupt, wondering why their new games don't sell, when they refuse to even support their older games. Who wants to buy something that won't be supported in the future?...

Then 2000 rolls around and there is a Renaissance in gaming. Once again the game stores are loaded with all manner of d20 product, supplements ... plus even other games makes a great comeback, then the game companies do exactly the same thing, and stop supporting 3e, and stop supporting a wide diversity of products in the gaming stores. Behind the scenes the distributors that are controlling the game market, showing favor to large companies and sending out drop shipments of huge quantities of trashy and low quality product, as well as eurotrash games, all the while ignoring the long tail and refusing to stock games from small independent game designers. Then bang! Amazon and eBay picks up the long tail and snatches it, making it easy to sell used old school games and indy games online via mail order, and all of a sudden the game companies find the retail stores can't stay open because they don't have any customers. Well duh... you ran them all off, what did you expect?   

 
« Last Edit: January 14, 2021, 03:18:01 pm by GameDaddy »
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SHARK

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #40 on: January 14, 2021, 03:22:39 pm »
Greetings!

Hmmm...game stores aren't special snowflakes unbeholden to the necessities of running a good business that is plugged in well to the community they serve. I can think of a number of game stores that I have been a regular patron of. In most cases, each such game store had been in business for ten years or more. Some are large and spacious--while others have been small, and cave-like. *Laughing* They have all offered excellent and diverse selection of products, from a large variety of RPG books, to dice, accessories, terrain, miniatures, as well as books on history, board games, model building, paints, and so on. Most also provided tables and game nights, and featured demos and that kind of thing. All of them always have well-paid, knowledgeable, and friendly staff working there, at all times. The game stores are managed well, most often by a single private owner that is dedicated to the hobby, running a good business, and being approachable and innovative. From what I have seen, if such businesses are managed in such a positive and professional manner, they succeed. Those that fail to do so, go down the drain and disappear.

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Charon's Little Helper

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #41 on: January 14, 2021, 03:25:44 pm »
If the only fishing you do is with a cane pole and worms in a pond then you don't need the bass pro shop.  No reasonable person would even suggest that because you fish and they run a shop that caters to fisherman that you should give them your patronage somehow, if they don't sell anything that you want.  It's only gamers that try to create this idea that gamers are some kind of special case that all need to look out for one another no matter what their particular interests and circumstances.

I think that the idea is at least somewhat because of the gamers who use their FLGS as a nexus to meet other gamers. Especially the gamers who will consistently game IN their FLGS and only rarely buy anything but a pop. (Which is the reason that some FLGSs don't bother with playing space anymore.)

Though I will say - some people DO have that same vibe towards local businesses generally. I don't, but many people do.

Brad

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #42 on: January 14, 2021, 03:46:31 pm »
I think that the idea is at least somewhat because of the gamers who use their FLGS as a nexus to meet other gamers. Especially the gamers who will consistently game IN their FLGS and only rarely buy anything but a pop. (Which is the reason that some FLGSs don't bother with playing space anymore.)

Though I will say - some people DO have that same vibe towards local businesses generally. I don't, but many people do.

The gaming store I mentioned in my previous post had an area for gaming that I regularly used to play. And I tried to buy everything I possibly could to support the store, but when they refused to actually stock anything I'm remotely interested in, even after making it explicit that I would buy a ton of stuff as long as it's of a rather broad category, I didn't shed many tears when they went out of business. Part of the problem (probably a major part) is that most people who run gaming stores have fuck all idea of how to conduct a business. Most lack simple financial skills vital to ensure cash flow and keep the business running; they won't do things like just accept the fact that they will NOT make any money for a year or two if they're remotely interested in being open, and thus won't buy stock or even do crap like turn the fucking heat on in the dead of winter (not making up that last part).

Steven Mitchell

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #43 on: January 14, 2021, 03:51:54 pm »

I think that the idea is at least somewhat because of the gamers who use their FLGS as a nexus to meet other gamers. Especially the gamers who will consistently game IN their FLGS and only rarely buy anything but a pop. (Which is the reason that some FLGSs don't bother with playing space anymore.)

Though I will say - some people DO have that same vibe towards local businesses generally. I don't, but many people do.

Sure.  I get that.  It's not a completely mercenary calculation for most people.  However, there has to be some value before you can start talking about relative value.  "A means to find players" has some value.  Might be practically negligible for person A and extremely important for person B, which is where the relative value part starts.   Plus, avoiding hassle is its own kind of value. 

"Friendly and Local" works on the margins. Establish that I can get value from the visit, then I'm likely to toss in an extra visit when the value isn't maybe strictly my best option.  I'm paying for track record and future satisfaction--of other sales that will be good options later.

Charon's Little Helper

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Re: Support Your FLGS
« Reply #44 on: January 14, 2021, 05:02:18 pm »
I think that the idea is at least somewhat because of the gamers who use their FLGS as a nexus to meet other gamers. Especially the gamers who will consistently game IN their FLGS and only rarely buy anything but a pop. (Which is the reason that some FLGSs don't bother with playing space anymore.)

Though I will say - some people DO have that same vibe towards local businesses generally. I don't, but many people do.

The gaming store I mentioned in my previous post had an area for gaming that I regularly used to play. And I tried to buy everything I possibly could to support the store, but when they refused to actually stock anything I'm remotely interested in, even after making it explicit that I would buy a ton of stuff as long as it's of a rather broad category, I didn't shed many tears when they went out of business.

Oh - sure. You aren't going to buy stuff that you aren't interested in. I was more explaining where the general sentiment came from (and it's a reasonable one) than I am pushing hard for it myself.

Part of the problem (probably a major part) is that most people who run gaming stores have fuck all idea of how to conduct a business. Most lack simple financial skills vital to ensure cash flow and keep the business running; they won't do things like just accept the fact that they will NOT make any money for a year or two if they're remotely interested in being open, and thus won't buy stock or even do crap like turn the fucking heat on in the dead of winter (not making up that last part).

Definitely. Most game stores are run by hobbyists who like the idea of gaming all the time instead of working a real job.

Which you'd think would open the door for someone who knows how to run a business to do really well, but the hobbyists don't have to be that successful to stay in business, as they generally do all the labor, so for many as long as they can pay the rent and survive, they'll keep going. It's hard to compete with passionate hobbyists.