Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

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Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

Wed Jan 04, 2017 4:58 pm

I notice that Dain and the Iron Hill Dwarves army miniatures are only available through Forge World. Any idea on why that is?
Also, I'm kind of fuzzy on the difference between Games Workshop and Forge World. IIRC, Forge World is a part of GW that mostly handles scenery and maybe some of the older games, or something like that. Is that right?

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Re: Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

Wed Jan 11, 2017 5:01 am

Not really sure on the reason for it. I think basically anything that is produced in lower volumes would be produced there.
it mostly does scenery andthings yes, but for the last 10 years or so they have been pumping out a lot of 30k stuff. Basically anything specialist is through them.

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Re: Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

Sat Jan 14, 2017 2:59 am

Apparently the Iron Hill Dwarves minis are made out of resin, so yeah the lower volume idea makes sense.
Not sure why they should be in lower volume or lower demand though.

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Re: Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

Tue Jan 31, 2017 8:00 am

My understanding is potentially flawed for a great many reasons as it comes from multiple sources. The LotR models that were produced by GW are still under GW's control, but apparently the new models will be released by and through Forge World. LotR has proven to have a faithful following in the UK which is enough to justify continued production, but as I understand it there has not been a lot of enthusiasm outside of the UK to justify GW proper to put additional resources into new lines.

Essentially I guess LotR has become a Specialist Game at this point.

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Re: Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

Wed Feb 01, 2017 9:46 am

hixont wrote:My understanding is potentially flawed for a great many reasons as it comes from multiple sources. The LotR models that were produced by GW are still under GW's control, but apparently the new models will be released by and through Forge World. LotR has proven to have a faithful following in the UK which is enough to justify continued production, but as I understand it there has not been a lot of enthusiasm outside of the UK to justify GW proper to put additional resources into new lines.

That makes sense. Now that the movies are over, I imagine they expect dwindling interest. Stands to reason that they turn it over to Forge World. The good news is that there will still be new releases. I'm still waiting for Thranduil on his elk, or whatever it is. I got a pretty nice Iron Hills Dwarves army that I was very happy with. Not sure I'm interested in the Gundabad ogres or berserkers, but time will tell.

I live In the US and I can attest strongly that this game is dead as a doornail over here, for whatever reason. Never has been popular that I'm aware of, really. I listen to The Green Dragon Podcast (which comes from Australia), and I envy that they have a small community that plays. Glad to hear it has some popularity in the UK, home of Professor Tolkien.

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Re: Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

Wed Feb 01, 2017 1:42 pm

It's more than a bit popular in the UK - they have a national league with tournaments every other week or so, and the official events ran by GW have sold out in record times. Even living outside the UK, that's good news: the community there is pretty much responsible for the revival of the game, support for which seemed to have ended shortly after the last Hobbit movie.

As for the Forge World (FW)/Games Workshop (GW) side of things, that's mostly logistics. In the past, GW used to produce all manner of smaller games, sharing the company's universes of Warhammer Fantasy or 40k, but focussing on conflicts in different eras or scales (the latter both in the sense of mass-battle versus skirmish, as well as the actual scale of some model ranges). Over time, they did away with these (stopping production and sales of the models), deeming them not worth the investment. Recently, the company came under new management, and the direction was basically reversed: those specialist games may not have brought in much money, but they kept veteran gamers interested, allowed more variation in products and had remained popular in gaming groups even without the company's support. A new team was established to work on these returning titles, while simultaneously another group was assembled to start working on Middle-earth again (which too had remained popular enough to warrant support, but required more specialised attention than the small-scale straightforward re-releases of e.g. Bloodbowl).

With the less-than-impressive implementation of Finecast, Games Workshop had stopped the production of new metal models (as in: new sculpts, old designs are continually cast to this day), and now only produces new miniatures in plastic. Producing moulds for plastic sprues is much more expensive than for metal or resin figures, requiring a larger turnover to repay the investment. Certain figures for the specialist games and Middle-earth are simply not popular enough to warrant this investment, which is why they were housed under the Forge World banner, which for years has produced specialist bits and figures in their own resin. Although no plastics are planned for Middle-earth at this stage (last I heard at least), it is worth noting the specialist games have had some models produced in plastic now too - perhaps, if our range retains and increases in popularity, it's could happen as well.

In short, I guess it's mainly caused by the phasing out of first metal, then Finecast for new models, leaving Forge World as the main option for smaller scale production of miniatures. Seeing how we now not only get new releases, but the material also is a lot better than Fincast was (much easier to clean up in terms of vents and supports, no plethora of bubbles and significantly cheaper where troops are concerned), that's all pretty good news in fact.

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Re: Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

Thu Feb 02, 2017 6:31 am

Interesting post, Coen. I've been out of the hobby for quite a few years, and am just now getting back into it. I'm not sure when the Finecast controversy began, but I recall when LOTR first came out, there were some plastic models released. The blisters were still metal. I never had any complaints any with the plastic models. I preferred the weight of the metal miniatures, but the plastic models were much easier to clean up and work with. The only complaint I recall was that the plastic models were sometimes smaller than the metal ones, and looked a little off sitting on the table together.

The resin Iron Hills Forge World models appear to be just as nice, or nicer.

I do appreciate the UK supporting the game, so that gives the rest of us a chance at getting the miniatures. I don't know why it never gained a foothold here in the US, maybe people here don't have the patience to do all that painting. Gamers here seem to prefer card based or video games. 40k is the only GW game I know of that has achieved any real popularity. Tolkien is a legend here, of course, as he should be. But the game is practically nonexistent.

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Re: Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

Thu Feb 02, 2017 11:55 am

It certainly didn't help that the Hobbit movies simply failed to create the same impact the preceding LotR trilogy did. Looking at the releases, it is worth noting that an Unexpected Journey had a number of plastic sets (Goblins, scenery, all the characters in the starter set, Elven Knights, Hunter Orcs, Wargs, Eagles), the second a good few less (Palace Guard, Mirkwood Rangers, Tauriel and Legolas) and none for the final movie (although they had started on the recently released Lake Town houses then). An additional factor may have been that many designs in the Hobbit were altered at the last minute, meaning any sculpts might end up not matching the final aesthetics (thus giving us Thranduil on horseback for example) - investing in expensive plastic figures for anything with an altered design would have been a costly mistake. Of course, all movies could have had plastic releases had they limited it to two films as the plans were at an earlier date anyway.

As for the popularity in the UK, it's true the entire Wargaming scene is a lot larger there. In general, there are quite the amount of shows and events; many companies of course being British themselves. When GW published seperate yearly revenues some years ago, their income in the USA was in the same order of magnitude as the UK IIRC, even if the latter has a fifth of the population (and similar to the rest of Europe as well, again at a larger population than the UK, although I couldn't say at what fraction as it's certainly focussed on Germany, France and a few other countries rather than the entire continent). Aside from the overall popularity of the hobby, it is also helped by a dense network of physical GW stores, something difficult to recreate in much less densely populated countries.

Anyway, the most important thing is that you've chosen a great moment to return - the new team is truly passionate about the game and has indicated to have ideas for many years to come!

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Re: Dain and Iron Hill Dwarves Question

Fri Feb 03, 2017 7:41 am

Coën wrote:It certainly didn't help that the Hobbit movies simply failed to create the same impact the preceding LotR trilogy did.

Well, to begin with, LOTR is simply a better story. Unfortunately, you could tell from the first movie that it was a mistake to stretch The Hobbit out into a trilogy. Too many repetitive scenes with orcs as filler. I enjoy the movies better in hindsight than I did when I first saw them.

I was one of the few people who was looking forward to seeing The Hobbit made by someone other than Peter Jackson. Not that he didn't do a good job. It was nice that he did make it, because all six movies have a cohesion and a feeling that it's all the same world. But I think that we all have a different picture of middle earth in our heads, and I was looking forward to seeing a different interpretation. I suppose in 20 years or whenever, maybe they'll remake The Hobbit or LOTR, and we'll get a new interpretation. It would be nicer to get The Silmarillion, but of course we'll probably never see that.

Sometimes I think that in the US, things like model railroading take the place that wargames have in the UK. It's a big part of our past here, and while we participated in WWII, we weren't in the line of fire to the extent the UK was.

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