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RIP: Black Industries

I am completely stunned. I can completely understand the decision from a corporation/business point of view but it has still knocked me for six.

I'll post more about it when I get home although I have a feeling various forums and mailing lists may be ablaze by then.

RIP: Black Industries

In other news Dark Heresy RPG (Black industries latest release) sold out of it's 20,000 print run upon it's week of release last week.

I wish I had a 'WTF' icon. This - if nothing else - would thoroughly deserve it.

Comments

( 27 comments — Leave a comment )
matt_m_mcelroy
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:27 pm (UTC)
So, are they done completely or just not doing RPGs anymore?

The press release makes it sound like they are still going to publish fiction.
mytholder
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:32 pm (UTC)
There's Black Library, which is the novels wing of GW, and within Black Library there's Black Industries, which is rpgs (and Talisman). Black Library's still going, Black Industries... isn't.
matt_m_mcelroy
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:34 pm (UTC)
Thanks.

I'm going to blame my confusion on the fact I've only had one cup of coffee this morning.
pyat
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:27 pm (UTC)
I wonder if they're planning to sell the license to the highest bidder.
aaronace
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:35 pm (UTC)
This was my WTF for the morning, that's for sure. Crazy.
timgray
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:35 pm (UTC)
Holy cow.

I wonder what this means for the future of WFRP.
smescrater
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:36 pm (UTC)
How curious.

I am surprised they feel they can't continue RPG production as well as novels. It makes sense that they have entry into the Waterstones marketplace to sell their product and increase the profile of their RPGs.

Hmm, oh well, that's dark heresy a bit banjaxed as a game, unless you see a lot of fan produced or PDF based supplements for the rest of the material.
serpentstar
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:44 pm (UTC)
It's not so much they can't, by the sound of things, as that novels are more profitable, and that GW will always tend to go where the money is.

It'd be nice if they licensed WFRP et al out to other game companies... but I won't be holding my breath.
iamnikchick
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:58 pm (UTC)
It'd be nice if they licensed WFRP et al out to other game companies... but I won't be holding my breath.

Nor will I. It hasn't been my impression during the almost 4 years we worked with them that they ever intend to license WFRP. Definitely not 40K, they want complete control over that.
serpentstar
Jan. 28th, 2008 05:18 pm (UTC)
Yeah. Though it's unfortunate from a gamer's perspective, it does make good business sense -- their returns for licensing WFRP or 40K are not worth their salary & other resource costs in ensuring the licensees are up to scratch, or, more importantly, the damage GW doubtless perceive could be done to the perception of their IP if a licensee screws up.
pond823
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:42 pm (UTC)
I was taken aback too, until I remembered a certain BL's staffer off hand comment to me alluding to the fact that as a profit centre BL was ruling the roost at GW.

The vast amount of effort to make DH 'canonical' compared to the books and the tiny return compared to fiction that it must get means that for a publicly owned company, a WH40K RPG is a waste of money making time.

And they can't license it IMHO, because they'll still have to keep it in line with all the other BL stuff.

Shame, I bought the book at the weekend and rather liked it.
karohemd
Jan. 28th, 2008 04:56 pm (UTC)
Blimey.
Looks like your advance copy is going to be even rarer soon. :oP
(Deleted comment)
ffutures
Jan. 28th, 2008 05:01 pm (UTC)
I wish I could feel surprise, but GW have done this many times before. I've given up trying to understand why they even pretend to be interested in RPGs, because in the long haul they clearly aren't.
scimon
Jan. 28th, 2008 05:06 pm (UTC)
I have a theory. It's the 'Simon games kiss of death' theory. Any game I get really into tends to collapse. (Or I can't find anyone to play it with). In defence of said theory I hold up the Dredd and City of Heroes CCG's and now Dark Heresy which I really like.

It's getting more powerful too.
synabetic
Jan. 28th, 2008 05:56 pm (UTC)
Wu-HUH? I had heard something that BI would "change", but I really didn't expect this. Could it also mean the RPG end will be rolled back up into GW again? Or farmed out (which it was for dev, like in the case of WFRP and Green Ronin)?

I hope they don't kill their RPG line. Then again, it's Games Workshop, so nothing they do surprises me. Even if they eat squealing babies, me = not surprised.
eryx_uk
Jan. 28th, 2008 06:40 pm (UTC)
It really makes no sense to go through all this, release the core book then a week later tell everyone that no, we're not bothering anymore. It takes the piss and is just going to have people turned off.
littlestkobold
Jan. 28th, 2008 08:47 pm (UTC)
You're not the only one surprised. Even in house we're a little bit WTF.

At least DH is going to get a nice full line released before it stops - I think the current reckoning is about 1200 pages of books, which ain't bad.
(Deleted comment)
angusabranson
Jan. 28th, 2008 09:30 pm (UTC)
It's not a printed source and I've done a search and they don't seem to have announced the quantity of the first print run in any press release/statement.

The 20k is from a very firm source though.

That's worldwide figures.
(Deleted comment)
djhive
Jan. 28th, 2008 11:30 pm (UTC)
Damn... that is a surprise.

And this is going to make finding a copy of DH even more difficult then it has been since Friday :(
angusabranson
Jan. 28th, 2008 11:38 pm (UTC)
We (Leisure Games - www.leisuregames.com) are getting more copies this week and mail order globally so if you fancy one and aren't having any luck locally.

Our postage to Belgium is £7.00 :)

EDIT: £7.00 per copy of Dark Heresy - just incase you were after multiple copies :p

Edited at 2008-01-28 11:39 pm (UTC)
djhive
Jan. 28th, 2008 11:48 pm (UTC)
I might follow up on that. Will discuss with the troops tomorrow, as yes, I needed multiple copies for our gaming group!
wyldcard
Jan. 29th, 2008 12:05 am (UTC)
What's your postage like to New Zealand?

Man, that is a shock. I can't really understand that, if the game is profitable, cutting it. I mean, seriously, you sell out 20,000 copies prior to release, and you don't think you can make money off the line? Good god! Even just re-prints would make you money. I was really looking forward to a 40k RPG, it's such a cool universe to play in. Bah, I guess I'll just go back to Dawn of War.
angusabranson
Jan. 29th, 2008 12:17 am (UTC)
I'd have to weigh up the book to be sure but our quoted postage to NZ for this would be £17.50 (50% of RRP).

The problem was that whilst the game - and all of Black Industries games (Talisman, Warhammer Fantasy RPG and the Dark Heresy release) - is profitable it isn't the most profitable thing that could be done with GW's time and money.

Their shares and end of year financial figures haven't been great and they need to do - and show their shareholders they are doing - something to help maximise their investment and profit margin. Thus the RPG/Board Game Division has been given the chop in favour of rearranging the resources it was using (man hours and money) into other areas which can generate profit quicker and easier.

I agree it is a very cool universe to play in and we're probably starting a game in the next month or so to go exploring in it.
kostika
Jan. 29th, 2008 12:38 am (UTC)
I'm not terrily bothered about DH. And it doesn't really surprise me considering GW's attitude towards RPGs has always been a bit funny.

I'm annoyed about Talisman. They bring back the best RPG boardgame ever and promise us expansions, then they do this. That just doesn't make sense to me.
( 27 comments — Leave a comment )

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