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A question for Stefan.
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TOPIC: A question for Stefan.
#18235
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
Not wanting to rain on anyone's parade...

But...

Making holes and alcoves in Narrow Passage walls is probably not very practical - at least from a sculpting/modelling point of view - it'd be hard to do. More than that, it'd be hard to cast them, and even harder to paint them. And because the passages [b]are[b/] narrow, it'd be hard to see into the alcoves anyway. I guess that, though I like the idea of alcoves/holes, I'm just not sure a Narrow Passages set is the best place for them.

Phil
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Medieval Buildings Set, Caverns x2, Cavernous Passages, Room and Passage, Deluxe Room, Octagonal Room, Narrow Passages, Advanced Builder, Wicked Additions I, Wicked Additions II, Traps I, Traps II, lots of individual pieces. I want Cavernous Rivers, and Cavernous Lakes, and Cavernous Ledges. Can you tell that I like caverns?
 
#18236
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
I really ought to leanr to think before I hit the 'Submit' button...

The Narrow Passages set is one of my favourites - and I have a load of 'extra' straight Narrow Passage pieces. If my set-up isn't purely Cavernous - i.e. it has some Dungeon stuff in it, it's almost bound to have Narrow Passages in it. A long Narrow Passage piece (4" or 6") would be very handy to have - it would speed up setups no end. A Narrow Passage 'cave-in' piece would be nice too. In fact...

I don't think it would be too hard to come up with a Narrow Passage Wicked Additions Set. :)

Phil
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Medieval Buildings Set, Caverns x2, Cavernous Passages, Room and Passage, Deluxe Room, Octagonal Room, Narrow Passages, Advanced Builder, Wicked Additions I, Wicked Additions II, Traps I, Traps II, lots of individual pieces. I want Cavernous Rivers, and Cavernous Lakes, and Cavernous Ledges. Can you tell that I like caverns?
 
#18237
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
philhendry makes an excellent point about the practicality of recesses or alcoves or other details in Narrow Passages -- they would be hard to see.

I'd rather see a standard Straight Wall piece with recesses, or perhaps a 4" or 6" Straight Wall piece with recesses, than any passage piece. By placing recesses (or the rectangular seals covering them) on a Straight Wall, DF allows builders to create underground tombs with graves in the walls and crypts in the middle of the room -- wide passages are still possible, as are standard 10' passages (if you put a room on the other side of the opposite wall). While one loses the claustrophobic feel of a true catacomb, you gain the ability to actually see the details of the pieces. You'll also have more room for miniatures combat.
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#18238
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
OR, jackattack;

Run TWO 6" crypted walls face-to-face, to make an @15'-wide corridor; place free-standing crypts (available from other makers) down the center. Let the players' minis TRY to run down that hallway fighting evil critters! Go ahead, let 'em try.
Can I watch?

Whatcha think?

See ya!

Jim
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#18239
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
Of course, you can't send these outside of the US. Isn't it still illegal to send crypted wares outside of the US?
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#18240
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
You know, I was just going to say essentially the same thing.

A catacomb set would be great, but that's not what I'd like to see when I ask for a Narrow Passages reissue. I just want more narrow passages!

And I have to ask -- I'm not sure, Stefan, why you refer to "problems the set poses." Is there a problem with just reissuing the exact same set? A lot of people have been asking for it, and with the new pre-order system, you wouldn't have to make an overwhelming amount and go through whatever might have led to poor sales of the first set. You could just make a small amount, put them in a container with some other sets, and sell them to those who pre-ordered them, I would imagine. I'm sure it is more complicated than that, but still -- with all this interest in that set, why think it needs to be changed? People who want that set, presumably and for the most part, DON'T want it changed! They want THAT set!

I certainly wouldn't object to including OTHER pieces with it, or maybe having all the basic elements from the first set, but fewer of them, to make room for variations -- but what some of us are asking about is just a way to acquire those particular pieces again, not variations on them.

I've been toying with my NPS a lot recently -- that secret bookshelf door just cries out for them -- and I have to say, I'd LOVE another set just like this one!

L

Well...the problems are with the possibility of factory minimums...if they consent to making only a few hundred then great, we can just re-release it...however...if they require us to make a minimum of 800 or so...then we have problems...obviously, we don't want to go down the road of having too much money tied up in inventory again...
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#18241
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
Stefan, DF

Would this be a feasable compromise?

Is it an option for DF (in this instance) to re-stock the various Narrow Passage elements into two individual/mini-sets of four pieces:

One set could contain four Straight Narrow Passage Pieces.

The other set could include a Four-Way, a Right-Turn and (two) Three-Way Narrow Passage pieces.


Although this would omit the Narrow-Wide Passage Conversion piece, this (less-used) piece could be included with either a catacombs set or with another, larger AB-tupe Set (along with the Diagonal Walls) at a later time. I suggest this as it sounds like many collectors (still wanting NP pieces/Sets) apppear to already have at least a set or more.

I suggest this option (of smaller/"individual" sets) to require multiple purchases from interested buyers.
As an example if a collector wants one more (original) set, they would end-up purchasing at least twice, (or more) the number of each smaller set.
In addition, other collectors may also be tempted to order some additional pieces if they are available in smaller quantities as well. This would more than double the demand/sales for such sets.


I'm not tossing this out as the "perfect" solution, but perhaps a workable one!

For the record, I don't require any more of the "original" Narrow Passages myself, but I do agree they are "essential" pieces.
I actually have just over 30 feet of various DF Narrow Passages in my collection and wouldn't want to do without them.

That being said I would only want to see them stocked if there is a good chance of them selling.

As for a Catacombs Set, put me down for at least 3 sets!
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#18242
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
One set could contain four Straight Narrow Passage Pieces.
But that's what you get/got in the box of 'individual' Straight Narrow Passage pieces anyway. It's hardly a 'set', in my opinion.

Phil
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Medieval Buildings Set, Caverns x2, Cavernous Passages, Room and Passage, Deluxe Room, Octagonal Room, Narrow Passages, Advanced Builder, Wicked Additions I, Wicked Additions II, Traps I, Traps II, lots of individual pieces. I want Cavernous Rivers, and Cavernous Lakes, and Cavernous Ledges. Can you tell that I like caverns?
 
#18243
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
Guys;

I think I see what Stefan is saying. It's not a case of "We can't re-issue this set, it's GONE!" it's a case of "we have to be sure we can sell what the factory requires as a minimum order."
In other words, if the factory in China demands a minimum order from DF of pieces for 800 sets, then DF needs to be able to SELL those 800 sets, in a profitable period of time, so they don't take a hit by either not selling them at all (kills profit FAST), or by selling them so slowly that Uncle Stupid eats the profit with INVENTORY TAX (kills profit S-l-o-w-l-y-y-y). Either way, the Infernal Revenue Service gets all the cash, Jeff and Stefan get the shaft, and we LOSE both the product AND the company!
It all depends, as Stefan said, on how small a minimum order the factory in China will produce per production run. If they will make pieces for 200-300 sets, then Stefan can put in the order, knowing that he has a good chance of selling those 200-300 sets worldwide in a reasonable period of time, before the IRS can hit him with their QUARTERLY Inventory Tax! BUT, if China demands a minimum order for 800 sets, Stefan and you and I are well and truly screwed; HE can't afford to tie up that much company capital in what could be a white elephant - and ANY overstock will be a white elephant if it hangs in the warehouse too long. Especially when the warehouse is a fulfillment center in Knoxville, Tennessee, where they want to rent out their warehouse space, and demand a pretty penny to do it.

Economics 101 class dismissed for the day. Bring a 500-word rebuttal to class next Thursday, with full footnotes and bibliography for reference materials.

Whaddaya think, guys; do I have a future as an instructor?

See ya!

Jim
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#18244
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
Actually, yes. That's a very good explanation of the business and marketing factors involved in placing a small order for production.

I suggested in another thread that maybe sets like Narrow Passages and Diagonal Walls could be ordered once a year, on an alternating basis -- Narrow Passages in 2007, Diagonal Walls in 2008, something else in 2009, and back around to Narrow Passages in 2010, for example.

That MIGHT allow demand to "build up" over time -- if the rate at which a set would sell is X units per year, and that set comes out every 3 years, then maybe DF would sell 2X units the year that set came out. (Those are dummy numbers, used for illustration purposes only.)

This is also exactly the sort of thing I proposed the pledge system for ("Pledges for Limited Runs", in this section of the forums) -- the idea being that DF could gauge demand ahead of time by offering customers the chance to pre-order WITH the understanding that unless they receive enough pre-orders, the set will NOT be ordered.
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#18245
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
I think this would be a great test-case for that. I woudl probably want to see a time-limit of some kind -- we need to get 600 orders (or for 600 sets, you know what I mean) within 1 year or something -- so that it isn't an entirely open-ended thing. But, yeah, this might be the best way to do it. You put up your $80 or whatever, and then if they sell 600 sets in a year, they order it and the stuff goes out. Otherwise, you get your money back. Other than the ubiquitous possibility of some kind of PR problem, I don't see how it could go wrong.

L
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#18246
A question for Stefan. 7 Years, 10 Months ago  
See the thread on pledges for the debate over time frames, money, and general viability.

The problem with collecting money ahead of time is that DF would then be "holding" those funds against a future possible order -- if it doesn't go off, then customers have actually LOST interest that would have been earned, or opportunities to buy other things with the money they sent in. So the time frame needs to be short, and the "earnest money" needs to be a small amount.

I think the best way to do it might be to collect a list of people who pledge (promise) that they will buy sets IF the order is placed. When that list is long enough (MORE than the minimum number, to compensate for folks who change their minds or have other financial obligations), an e-mail could go out and actual pre-orders could be collected. IFF sufficient funds come in, the order is made -- if not, funds are cheerfully returned OR credited towards other purchases.

Note, however, that we are already discussing an experiment in bringing back Narrow Passages at all. Jeff and Stefan are already a little leery of doing pre-orders again in light of the problems from the last shipment (although I really think that the pre-order business model is fine, it was a series of delays and complications in shipping and delivery that caused their actual headaches, and it is unlikely that the particular combination of events will happen again). Piling on this additional experimental ordering plan might be a bit much.
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