Saturday, May 28, 2011

New Horizons (and a couple WIPs)

Hey all, Grizz here. Life has happened, once again, and for the 4th time in 12 months, I am movin. So, this past week has been quite hectic, packin up every piece of my life and gettin ready to move across 60 miles and a time zone. Awesome. So I apologize for the lack of updates, but these next couple weeks are gonna be very busy and full of moving. But never fear, we will try to get better at the updatin. So, on to the good stuff.

The Space Wolves are comin along, slowly but surely, tryin to get them together as quick as I can so I can start gettin the games out with them, and let y'all know how they turn out. I am havin a blast convertin and paintin the ol' Pups. I have decided on runnin Gunnar Red Moon's Great Company. After readin the fluff and lookin at stuff, I just fell in love with the character. Got my first taste of free hand, somethin I have never done before, but I think it turned out ok. Here is some WIPs of my Wolf Lord and my freehand on one of my Rhinos.

So here is what I have been workin on, fittin in between packin boxes and such.

So, how do you think the Space Wolves are turnin out? Hit or Miss?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

My letter to Games Workshop

Hola Bear Cubs! Just wanted to share with you the letter that I sent to Games Workshop today, regarding their pricing structure. I felt that I had no right to bitch and moan if I didn't do anything about it, so I wrote them a letter explaining my feelings and position.


May 18, 2011

Dear Games Workshop;

I am writing you as a result of your recent release of your pricing list that will take effect at the end of this month. I must ask you to respectfully reconsider your current business practices and pricing structure. 

As a recent graduate of a well respected College of Business, graduating with a Bachelor of Science of Business Administration with a major in General Management, I have been studying business strategies and working case studies for a significant amount of the last few years. Now, let me state that I am no expert of your business model, but as an outsider looking in, it seems that your model is short-sighted, with little thought into the long haul.

A business cannot sustain itself by constant price hikes and alienating their customer base, which whether or not you are cognizant of it, is happening to your business and your customer base. I understand that due to inflation, prices will fluctuate, but I do not believe this to be the case with your pricing structure.

Let me give you a little background on myself, so you can better appreciate my position. I started this hobby of mine back in 1998, right after the release of Warhammer 40,000 3rd Edition. I walked into your Games Workshop store that was in Opry Mills Mall, located in Nashville, TN. At the age of 9 years old, I was introduced to my beloved Space Marines and the wonderful universe that your company has created. I have spent the last 13 years buying, selling, collecting, painting, and enjoying the wonderful world of Warhammer 40,000. 

Over the years, I have owned no less than 8 armies, currently owning 4. I also have 2 Warhammer Fantasy armies, and own most of your video games that have been released by THQ. I am active in my 40k community, am a member of a local gaming group that has membership stretching across East and Middle Tennessee, am heavily involved in the Tennessee tournament circuit, and write a 40k web blog (

Needless to say, I am a loyal and faithful customer of yours, forsaking all other tabletop games in the process. I have defended your actions in the past, as I felt and still feel that your product is top notch and superior to all others on the market. You support your product well and the current state of the game, 5th Edition, is the most fun system I have played. That is why this next part pains me as much as it does.

Starting today, I will begin to sell off my armies, and will no longer be buying your product. I feel that as a loyal customer, I have been misled and treated unfairly. Your current prices, in my personal opinion, are quite high as is, as my last army cost upwards of $500 just to have 2000-2200 points’ worth of models.

With the coming of your new prices, I feel that it will become too expensive to start a new army or continue to support all of my armies. For me, your prices will break through the ceiling of where I feel I can justifiably purchase plastic models.  I feel that the new “Finecast” line you are introducing is a great step for your company, but the prices are not fair. Your company informed the consumers that you were dropping your metal line due to the cost, and that you were looking for more cost effective methods.

You then find this new material, and want to charge us more than we paid for the metal range? I feel that your company has insulted my intelligence as a customer. I write this letter not out of anger, but out of love for the world you have created. I want nothing more than for Warhammer 40,000 and Games Workshop to be around for many years to come. But I cannot continue to stand by and watch you treat your customers with disrespect and negligence. As I have previously stated, unless there are changes made, I will no longer be a Games Workshop customer, and will begin to look elsewhere for my tabletop and wargaming needs.


Jake Bussey

Loyal Customer since 1998


If you feel similar, I would encourage you to email Games Workshop at and tell them how you feel. Make your presence known!

-Update- hey guys, just to clear things up, the Blog ain't goin nowhere, and neither am I, so don't worry, I will still be updatin the blog, And I ain't sellin off ALL my armies, and will still be playing, I just won't be buying any new armies and will be playin what i got, so don't fear, The Grizz is still here!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

An Open Letter

Hi all, this is a repost from 3++ Is The New Black, an open letter to Games Workshop written by Kirby about the new price hikes. Thought I'd share it with you guys


I normally hate these type of posts and avoid writing them like the plague. Most of these type of articles just end up complete whining or asshatery (though I did love SandWyrm's)which isn't really necessary but what has happened recently has lead me to write this. Before we get to the letter though some information. Games Workshop has changed their terms and conditions for stores in the United Kingdom to only allow shipping to countries within the European Union and other parts of Europe. They have increased their prices again come June and have announced the released of resin and mixed resin/plastic sets instead of metals with an approximate increase of 2.5-25% depending upon the set. None of these sets are new but rather re-casts. 

Letter time!

To Games Workshop,

Why? No seriously, why? I'm sure the excuse of cutting off Australasia and other countries (Canada, India, Korea, South American countries, etc.) to benefit the independent and GW store sales in Australia sounded good but unless you cut the prices here to not be a ridiculous 200% higher price than overseas, it's not going to happen. Let's look at this logically. You've stopped us from buying from stores like Maelstrom and Wayland with an embargo agreement in your Terms and Conditions (remember globalisation? how's that going btw?). Does this mean we are going to now buy at RRP in Australia or other countries? No.

There are other outlets overseas we can buy from which are still much cheaper (hi America), other companies which you cannot touch without raising a helluva lot of crap (hi ebay) and people who are willing to ship to us overseas (hello family and friends) without the 200% tax. We won't be getting as huge a discount as before but it's much better than buying here at RRP. The other option is of course going to be quitting which I imagine some people are going to do. Check out this thread on WargamerAU where a lot of people are indicating they are. The ultimate bottom line? Your bottom line suffers (more people leaving) and the retailers in Australia do not benefit.

Now I'm all for one in supporting the locals. I buy all my products such as spray paint, paints, plasticard, magnets, drills + bits, modelling putty, brushes, etc. from Australia. As an aside, do you actually stock good quality merchandise for all of those options? I don't see you selling plasticard, magnets, good sized drillbits, custom bases, etc. I'd be happy to pay a 5-10% premium on these objects compared to other stores to support your business but then again, I don't really want to support your business currently do I? The point of any business is to make a profit but the problem with your business model is you do not do this whilst concurrently supporting your customer base. We don't ask for much but a short list would look like...
  • not raising prices every year, without fail, regardless of the economic situation or inflation rates
  • basing prices around the world upon exchange rates (I wouldn't be averse to paying 20% more in Australia compared to the UK or America locally but I am adverse to paying twice as much) - there are circumstances in each country that make operating there more or less expensive but you need a base retail price for your product which is then translated by exchange rates at a given time (i.e. quarterly) rather than a price set many, many years ago. It's part of being in a global market.
  • regular and quick FAQs - you've done a fantastic job IMO of creating some pretty balanced books for 5th edition, fix the grey areas quickly.
  • official erratas - man up and admit you've made mistakes (hi Tyranids) and work on erratas that are official and re-print the books with these amendments. Admitting a mistake and fixing it isn't a problem and I'd applaud you for it. Ignoring a problem is.
  • fix Fantasy - you did it with 40k, why go backwards with Fantasy?
  • don't think your customer base is moronic - the resin re-cast to be cheaper than metals whilst hiking prices, not fooling anyone.
Ultimately people in Australia and other countries go overseas for their Games Workshop products for a reason: it's significantly cheaper (I.e. half price). What motivation is there to therefore buy from our locals when you aren't treating your customers with loyalty and support? People will walk away and your bottom line will hurt. A simple solution: care about your customers. Change the Australian (and other countries) prices so they are at least similar to the UK and US. This doesn't have to be the exact same price but some parity would be greatly appreciated.

Here's a quick example. If you could buy a similar product for $45 compared to $150, what would you do? How about if the product was the exact same but if you ordered it overseas it was $80 compared to $150 by the time it reached your door step? I'm pretty sure you'd want to take the cheaper option correct? For you as a company, you make your profit margin through the reseller regardless of where it is purchased. You may make more money off a direct sale at an Australian store compared to an Internet sale from the UK but you have already achieved the profit margin from the Internet sale already. The Australian stores may be hurting but this is down to the initial price you have set, not market trends. Simply put, you are alienating customers from a large and developing market.

I and many of the readers here obviously enjoy your game. We've played it through thick and thin (4th edition...) or come back thanks to an improvement game balance (5th edition) and don't want to leave. We will though sooner or later if you keep piling on idiotic choices on us. Other companies like Privateer Press did very well in the early to mid-2000s for a reason and people will migrate to other gaming systems if you continue to mistreat them and their loyalty.

As it stands I question why you do the things you do. Raising prices every year annoys me but I cannot complain too loudly as your products are a luxury item but you do not provide excellent customer service one usually expects with such goods. I certainly find minimal fault with your staff or when your product is damaged/faulty but your overarching business model seems counter-intuitive to maintaining a customer base. Even if you are getting a large amount of new customers imagine how much better off your company would be if you had maintained a significant portion of your repeat customers. The model you are running currently to me does not seem sustainable as your turnover rate in customers is just too high. I applaud your efforts in making 40k 5th edition a more competitive game but what you've done to Fantasy 8th edition doesn't bode well for the future.

Please, look to satisfy both the shareholders and the customer rather than just the former.


P.S. Anyone who agrees with this, I would greatly appreciate this being re-posted on your blog so we might actually garner GW's attention and hopefully move forward together. That is the ultimate goal, I want Games Workshop to succeed as a company so I can continue to enjoy the gaming systems I do but to do that, Games Workshop must look at altering their business model in the long run to maintain a steady customer base.

So what do y'all think about the new price hike? Is GW pricing themselves out of business?

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Goodbye To An Old Friend...

I miss you already ;..(
Today marked the first time in a long time that I played a 2000pt Blood Angel list minus my big man, my Great Bambino, The Sanguinor. Ol' Sangy is an amazing piece of work. He truly is a unit that supports, protects, and makes the rest of your army better. He is a great deathstar slayer, and makes IC's shake in their boots. He is a beautiful model, and a fountain of wrath, and he is currently sitting on my shelf, as opposed to on the table. 

It was a hard decision, but I think it is for the best interest of myself and my list's competitiveness. Although I typically ran 4 troops, only two of them scored. I felt like I was always fighting with an arm tied behind my back. So I dropped the Sanguinor, freeing up enough points to put in another RAS. One would not think this to be such a game changer, but in today's games versus Wolves, the flexibility, durability, and extra boots on the ground were immediately noticeable. my list today - 

---Sang. Sword, Shield Of Sang, Jump Pack\

Sang. Priest
---JP, PW

Furioso Dread
---Frag Cannon, Heavy Flamer

---Melta Bombs
Death Co.
---3x BP/CCW, 3x BP/PW, 1x BP/PF
Death Co. Dread
---Blood Talons

3x RAS
---7x BP/CCW,  Flamer, Melta, Fisty Sarge

2x Predators
---AC, LC sponsons


I ran Libby, Priest, and 3x RAS together in a pack, giving all 3 Furious Charge and a 5+ cover save, and it worked out well. I was most of all surprised at how much more versatile and flexible I became, and the big RAS blob was vicious and self supporting. The Frag Dread was awesome, as always, and the DC, Dread, Chappie, and Stormraven were once again my favorite combo in the game. I will miss ol's Sanguinor, but I just couldn't keep him AND the DC in the same list, so I had to choose. 

Dear God not THAT one!!!
It was too many points in deathstars/hq's, and I needed more scoring units. One idea I have toyed around with is taking out the chappie and running Ol' Lemmiwinks with the DC, giving them some more killing power as I am losing Sanguinor and dropped them to 7. I will prolly playtest him and see how he does. Anyway, enough ramblings for now, y'all take it easy!

Have y'all ever had a unit you loved but just wasn't working in your particular list? Tell us about it!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Back On Track

Ok guys, thanks for bearing with me, Finals are over, College is in the books, and I am now just another unemployed graduate lookin for work! over the course of Finals week, I was able to get in a couple games of 40k with Pariah.Stevo of Tainted By Xenos fame. He brought his Grey Knights and Dark Eldar and I brought the Nids. The first game was Capt. And Control, vs GK. 

What Stevo Opened up on me with his GK's
I basically watched a Grand Master w/ rad grenades and a purifier squad walk through 2 Trygons and storm bolter fire annihilate all my gaunts, with my Tyrant/guard/Prime never getting into assault. Sad day for Hive Fleet Cerberus. So I changed up my list a lil bit for the next game, Kill points vs. Dark Eldar. I ran;

2 Tervigons
3x 16 strong Hormagants
2x 3 strong Hive Guard
2x Trygon Primes
3x Venomthropes

Game was a close one, coming down to 12-10 kps, Stevo pullin it out. Hormagants w/ Feel No Pain via the  tervigons are nigh unkillable, and Trygons pumpin out 12 St. 5 shots a piece were downin skimmers left and right. I think that i am hangin up the Tyrant Deathstar unit for a while, a crap ton of points for very little gain thus far. 2 Tervigons = awesomesauce. I fell in love with this list, as there are more hooves on the ground and it is overall more effective. 3 units of Toxin Sac/Adrenal Gland Hormagants are a bear to take out, especially when they have FnP. 

Playing against two extremely shooty armies made me realize something. None of my armies are balanced. All of them are killer assaulty, with minimal firepower. It would be nice to have an army that can shoot as well as it assaults. I then started gettin the new army itch (again) and started lookin for my balanced answer. As I was cleaning up my hobby room, I began to find all of my Space Marine stuff that I don't use that I have had since before my BA, all the stuff that was gonna be Salamanders. Well, no offense to anyone, but I hate the SM codex. It is a very viable dex, i just don't care for any of the builds out of it. Then my eyes fell on the Space Wolves.

Codex: Space Wolves is like the perfect blend of what I was looking for. Great Troop Choices, like my Chaos, without the heavy price tag points wise, yet good in assault, like my BA. And they cant shoot the lights out. Then I realized that with all the SM crap I have, i am only about 40 Grey Hunters away from a new army. So, I get a new army, more balanced, for next to nothing comparatively? Yes Please! 

So that brings the army total to 4
---Blood Angels
---Space Wolves

All very different armies, and all very flavorful. I have thrown a list together, an idea of kinda where I want to head.

Wolf Lord in Terminator Armor
---Storm Shield, Frost Weapon, Wolf tail Talisman, Saga of the Bear
2x Wolf Guard in Terminator Armor
---Storm Shield, Frost Weapon
2x Wolf Guard in Terminator Armor
---Storm shield, Thunder Hammer
Drop Pod

4x Wolf Guard in Power Armor
---Combi Meltas, PF's

4x Grey Hunters Packs
---9x Strong, 1x Flamer, Rhino

2x Long Fang Packs
---6x Strong, 2x LCs, 3x ML's
2x Rune Priests
---JotWW& Living Lightning
---Murderous Hurricane & Tempests Wrath



Well, thats all I got for now, feels good to be back!

So, what do we think of The Grizz's new army decisions? Will he be able to juggle all four armies? How will he fare with his new Wolves?

Monday, May 2, 2011


Dear God just let me be one of them...
OK Bear Cubs, this week is gonna suck. For those of you who don't know, I am a graduating Business Management Major at Tennessee Tech. This week may be my last week of school ever, w00t! So, from today till Saturday, there will probably be no updates due to studying for finals. Sad, I know. My brain will be running out of my ears due to Quantitative Analysis, so once again I apologize for the short delay, but a bear's gotta do what a bear's gotta do, and this bear has to graduate, or Mrs. Adams is gonna throttle him, and not in a good way!

Enjoy the week off from my incoherent ramblings! See you soon!