Gamethink

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Publishing Schedules: Picking the Right Time

posted by L0N

Just a quick thought from the Token Retailer

One of the things that has always confused me is why smaller game publishers wait till the end of the summer with GenCon for their biggest releases.

This August we have the new World of Darkness & Vampire due out. Along with the new edition of GURPS coming as well. Throw in there anything the from the board game folk like Rio Grande Games, Mayfair Games, and UberPlay, it is going to be hard for someone with no advertising or buzz to get noticed at GenCon. When I order new games for the store I spend the most of my time & budget on things I know will sell. When I have multiple releases from the from the big companies like WizKids, Wizards of the Coast, White Wolf, & Steve Jackson Games. That is who I will be paying the most attention to, because they make the most money for me. A store's budget is also constrained by the fact I have to re-order product as well. If I need another copy of Munchkin, Settlers of Catan, or the Players Handbook I will get that first rather than a copy of a new game.

There is also a window of opportunity after the summer season for pre & post Christmas releases as well. Especially for a board or a card game. People with gift money are looking for something to on school break. Or to play with relatives perhaps. This also works well if you want to follow up an earlier release with an expansion or supplement.

Its far better to get your game out in early May or June when you might be noticed by the retailer. And it is far less likely to get lost in the mass of other games that come out at GenCon or even Origins for that matter.