Sunday, March 14, 2010

Jervis Johnson is wrong again

I just got around to reading Jervis Johnson's standard bearer article in US WD 361 on page 76 today.   He says, "The days that you had to use converted models in your army, like Aly and I did, have long gone." Man, that really ticked me off when I read that and reflected on all the missing models that we have to convert.

Not so Mr. Johnson, I guess you haven't been constructing enough armies to realize how wrong you are.  I'll rattle off a few models that we need to convert because they don't exist as products by GW Citadel Miniatures and we are not talking Forgeworld models either.  Vendetta, Manticore, Medusa, Hydra, Griffon, Thunderwolf Cavalry, Long Fangs (regular Devastators aren't Wolf enough!), half the Tyranid models in the new book, Space Marine Razorback with Las/Twin Plasma, and the Blood Angels Stormraven Gunship (Don't worry about the Stormraven, I've got it covered for everyone!).

So we, the consumers, who want to spend our hard-earned money on your products (GW) expect that you (GW) create the models for the Codices that you publish. PERIOD.  Stop lolly-gagging around in your comfy studio and start speaking more to the public about what's missing.   If you need help, I'm happy to help.  You know how to get in contact with me!


#2501 said...

It'sstuff like that, in addition to the format change , that made me stop reading White Dwarf. The magazine has become nothing but one giant ad, where in its heyday it had a lot of interesting content.

Let's roll back for a second to issue... oh here's WD #115! It has:
-a long article on Genestealer Hybrds and cults (including an armylist)
- tons of charming pencil and pen & ink art,
- 'Eavy Metal galleries full of nice studio paint and conversion work
- the rules for Charge! an entirely made-up game
- Talisman Master-level character cards and rules
- New weapons for Space Hulk
- Rules and fluff for Commissar Training Squads in 40k.

Now, compare that to a newer copy of WD, for example the one you're holding in your hands. One long brochure on "buy our stuff". No good content, not even decent toilet reading. Tell me if this sounds familiar:

- The Codex of the Month wins a battle report (surprise!). Maybe one of these each for 40k and Fantasy if you're lucky.
- some teasing on the next Codex of the Month (probably a paragraph and 1 or 2 models)
- painted sprues of some new plastic mini
- a gallery of Golden Demon winners (has the studio staff stopped painting models for fun?)
- a Lord of the Rings section that no one will read, because interest was low during the movies and dropped lower, after.
- 20 pages (front and back, so 40, really) of GW product ads, plus another 10 or so spinkled throughout.

What a waste of $9. I'd still pick up and read the older issue over a new one, any day.

Meanwhile you have talented sculptors making their own models (check Cool Mini or Not some time) , and Russians buying them and recasting them to sell for $35 apiece, if not more, on eBay. (primarchs, Thunderwolves, even Forge World kits)

Don't get me wrong, I love the game and the hobby, but if you have a direct line to GW, please tell them the emperor has no clothes, so to speak. It's time for some kind of renaissance across the pond...

The Harrower said...

It really makes me think that Jervis is kept in a box somewhere in the back of the Studio. Also, doesn't the Editor like read or edit his articles? I just find it funny that stuff like this that is so grossly out in left field makes it to print in the first place. Really curious to see what you have cooking for the Stormraven. I'm working on my own sketches for it.

Col. Hessler said...

Glad you had the stones to speak your mind.


Dungeon said...

How about Steel Legion Meltas and Flamers? Valhallan Plasmaguns? Oh wait those are collectors armies surely no one has any of them anymore. Okay... Knight Commander Pask? Anyone seen him? Nope but we sure do have the new shittied up Chimera kit and Leman Russ kit. THANKS GW!!

Buyaki said...

Good points all around. I cherish my old WDs, though some times I wonder if I cherish their content more as they were almost akin to treasure maps during my formative hobby years. But I do agree, WD content is not close to what it was 4-5 years ago, when they changed to this current content. How does this current content style of WD retain/recruit hobbyists?

I'm really not sure what Jervis is doing for the business these day. He's been there for a long time but hasn't written a codex since Dark Angels. Being out of game design for so long surely must make his a bit rusty on it. But I must give my kudos to him, he did create and work on some of the best games GW ever did... Adeptus Titanicus, Space Marine, Blood Bowl, and 40K 2nd ed. These were games in my early GW years.

I am composing a letter to GW that I will send to various Studio members. I'll post the letter on this blog as well.

JohnnyFeverish said...

Jervis Johnson is a God among Men. He is not only NEVER WRONG, but he is ALWAYS RIGHT!

He set the standard for the new codex books with Dark Angels, and his path has been the way of the 40k warrior.

eriochrome said...

That is a funny quote after the nid codex. I do not think the Jervis is really still working for GW other than the Standard Bearer articles.

White Dwarf is caught in a bad place in the Magazine world. My wife(scrapbooker) essentially gets 2 types of magazines.

Cheap ones in the few dollars a month range which have some good content but a ton of adds for all sorts of things that would be of interest to her. In this case the ads really pay the cost of making the magazine viable.

Expensive ones in the 15 dollar range that are almost books which are full of great content with zero ads. Here the subscribers are paying the full cost for the content hence the very high price.

White Dwarf gives you the content of the cheap ones but charges the price near the expensive ones since they are not "charging GW" the proper cost of the ads as it relates to content. I wonder if GW expects white dwarf to make money but if it is half internal ads that really is not fair.

I also bet that WD staff has their hands tied about what they can really do. Without the bitz orders all those great conversions they used to show are not as easy. They take all these missions that would make great content in a white dwarf and sell it as a seperate book. Almost all of GW expansions could have been done as articles in white dwarf. Apocalpsye has what 6 pages of basic rules, same for Planetstrike, and Cities of Death. These would have all been WD projects in the past.

Buyaki said...

Thanks for the interesting perspective Eriochrome.

Your last paragraph captures what in essence is the current problem within WD and how GW are handling it (or lack thereof).

Colonel Kane said...

To be honest Jason, I think GW are now very set on releasing everything in a new codex within a set time frame, allowing for a big 'second hit' a year or so after a new book release to revitalise peoples' interest in their army.

Hope so at least :-)

Modock Miniatures said...

This topic has been an issue for them for years. I have seen only marginal improvement in model availability, and I am speaking o fthe days where you have something 16 characters in the Orc & Goblin army book but only 4 models available. Silly stuff.

Anonymous said...

"regular Devastators aren't Wolf enough!"
Oh bite me, you can convert them just fine. Any more wolf in the SW Pack and they'd be chewing your furniture and pissing on your rug.

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