I was musing the other day over the youth of today and our hobby (that is war-gaming and modelling).
I like many of you (and Paul himself?) come from a fantasy background, it seemed normal at the time to make models and fight with dice. However, in my discussions with the kids of today, this is no longer so.
Gamesworkshop has experienced falling profits for years now (don't have a reference but can find one if anyone doubts this). Clearly kids are not joining the hobby as they used to. This does not surprise me, the prices of gamesworkshops figures have gone up and up, anyone remember £10 tactical squad of marines?! They seem to ignore anyone who doesn't play 40k Space Marines or WFB High Elves, these get constant releases whilst others get an update every 4 years it seems. I also believe that they have lost sight of their most important consumer, the 13 year old with £10 pocket money, what can they buy these days?
This point applies not just to gamesworkshop, but all producers. The hobby has become increasingly focused upon its artistic nature. To use GW again, their boxes and magazine are adorned with pro-painted figures that create a totally unrealistic expectation and disillusion in the minds of their younger audience. Speaking again from conversations with a younger relative, kids are worried they won't be able to paint to that standard. He is only slowly realising that it doesn't matter as long as he tries his best/is having fun. Not to mention that many competitions are now judged upon painting skill.
How does this relate to warlord games?
Their plastic kits I do feel are not marketed well enough. They are not in hobbycraft or modelzone. They are simple for a youth to build and paint. Kids are learning at the age of 11 what a Roman is and latter what the second world war was. Warlords time periods are familiar to most kids and I can't help but feel could be successful with this age group.
Maybe they could market "Action packs" with maybe 5 figures in. With a simple 5 paint colour scheme.
I would also love to see Warlord develop a rule set for their Bolt Action Miniatures range. I feel sure they could do better than RoE. Second world war combat lends itself to a fast paced rule set similar to 40k.
Cheers everyone and sorry for taking your time if you think my post was rubbish!