Jump to content

It might have ended before it really began...


Swabby
 Share

Recommended Posts

This is an official response from yesterday I got when I wrote to GW to ask when Cursed City would be back in stock:

--

Hi there,

Thank you for your email, unfortunately, Cursed City is sold-out on games-workshop.com and we are not expecting it to return online.

Many copies have been sent to local stores across the world. Please check with your local Warhammer store or independent retailer to see if they can help.
Stores will not have more stock sent, once these copies are gone.

Miniatures from the set may become available in different formats in the future, and we know that there is a full army of Soulblight Gravelords miniatures on their way very soon.

I know this isn't an immediate help and can only thank you for your understanding in these trying times.

Thanks again for your time.

Kindest regards.

--

The rule and/or questbook that comes with the game refers to more/expansion quests, and refers to the included "Ulfenkarn in Peril" as the first quest. Hmm., I'm still assembling minis and reading through the stuff at the moment, but I cannot understand why this is meant to be such a limited realease. It has so much potential. It really is the Blackstone Fortress in AOS I hoped for when it got announced back then.

  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

They previously stated it would be a long running product.

Something has gone very wrong, but that response is the only thing we know about it.

Some people point to fueling FOMO, but that works a lot better if you don't reassure people they can get it later. Without elaboration, I just assume incompetence. If not for the actual reason, then still for the lack of communication.

 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

imho it would be great if GW would explain what went wrong or at least publish a statement regarding the current status of the game.

It's kinda embarrassing for a large company like GW not only to ****** over the release, but to be not capable of handle this case apropriate and transparent.

 

edit

and I was lucky to get the game at my LGS

Edited by Dolinarius
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, DoctorPerils said:

There are rumours of some kind of copyright infringement (that reared its head after publication), so they actually can't legally sell more copies of the game than they already have :(

There have been a few theories that have reared their head:

  • Copyright infringement
  • Tariff issues due to the content coming from China (cardstock, etc)
  • Lack of production capacity (they're already quite behind on new releases, and are having issues with things being out of stock on the web store)
  • Issues as a result of their ERP system upgrade

Obviously, any/all of the above could be complete nonsense :)

Edited by Cordova
Expanded production capacity point
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Between covid, brexit with it’s associated tariffs, and Ever Given incident backlogging a lot of imports there are plenty of reasons for a delay in availability rather than an outright cancelling of the line.  ‘Expected’ is a very lose term and fortunately pretty much translates as ‘we haven’t a clue what is going on’, rather than that’s it they’re gone for good.  It’s likely that their printers are back logged for the foreseeable future as orders need to be placed many months in advance.

The lack of transparency and a clear answer from GW is infuriating, but admitting publicly about production issues or delays reduces the value of shares in the company, and at the end of the day GW’s priority for decades now has been maintaining the value of their shares.  As such I wouldn’t expect a single word from them until another wave is made available or the game fades into obscurity.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Copyright infringement seems to me the only reason that makes sense for no longer producing it. Other speculations would affect its availability but not in a permanent way. It s a shame reallly when we got elves and orcs being renamed aelves and orruks yet they are still ending in a situation like this from what I ve heard is a copyright infringement with the box game titled "cursed city".  It s also the best explanation as to why they are not amking any statement regarding the issue at hand. Makes them look bad and the shareholders won t like it

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, azdimy said:

Other speculations would affect its availability but not in a permanent way. 

I guess it depends on the internal decision-making process.  They're already months behind on their release schedule, and given that they can't keep fairly significant chunks of their current range in stock, they might have decided that as a fairly niche product with a relatively large amount of content produced by third-parties for them (dice, boards, cards) was something they simply didn't have any spare production time for, as other items were more profitable?  

3 hours ago, azdimy said:

from what I ve heard is a copyright infringement with the box game titled "cursed city".  

Sounds more like trademark than copyright, unless they cloned the game. :)

Whatever the cause, it's fair to say it's a pretty unsatisfactory situation/outcome for those who were interested in the game. :(

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was informed by my local store that the reason cursed city changed plans was due to their print company who does all the cards and such closing down in lockdown which is who they had their plans with. 
 

GW is such a large company I would have thought they’d set up their own printing area by now. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, SirSalabean said:

I was informed by my local store that the reason cursed city changed plans was due to their print company who does all the cards and such closing down in lockdown which is who they had their plans with. 
 

GW is such a large company I would have thought they’d set up their own printing area by now. 

I mean if they did, Warscroll cards wouldn’t be a limited item for sale every time a book came out

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There's a huge amount of speculation going round on the situation of Cursed City at the moment which has been compounded by the almost complete radio silence from GW.  In truth all of these rumours have an element of plausibility.

What we do know is that there is now an official line that Cursed City is now out of print and no longer coming back in stock.  We also know that we've had no articles/videos on Cursed City since it went on release.  What we don't know is the long term implications - are the models/rules being made available at some point?  Are we going to see any expansions?  etc  Thinking back to when GW withdrew the Forge World paint range without any notice, it was a number of months before we saw those paints incorporated into the main Citadel range and I wouldn't be surprised at a solution being six months away.

As a suggestion, GW do have a complaints page which you can fill in to register a complaint.  I'd probably focus on the lack of communication rather than the fact you might not have picked up the game.  A company that prides itself on it's customer service will likely be closely monitoring the complaints it receives, especially if they're about something they have control of (they can't control a supplier going bust, but can control how they handle that news).

 

10 hours ago, SirSalabean said:

GW is such a large company I would have thought they’d set up their own printing area by now. 

I did hear a rumour that this is being looked into.  Years ago GW did produce all of their own card but it became cost prohibitive to continue and it was better to have it produced in China which has a monstrous paper/card manufacturing potential.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, azdimy said:

what I ve heard is a copyright infringement with the box game titled "cursed city".

I'm not 100% sure of this because the game is called "Warhammer Quest: Cursed City".  It's entirely possible that something else within the box has a copyright infringement, but I don't believe it's the name of the game.  Could be wrong though!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've left a complaint against the lack of communication. I've said I'm disappointed if it doesn't come back but if there's a reason for the issue than of course I and others would reluctantly accept it. I've not asked for a response because I'll just get the corporate speech and I'm not interested in that!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Some interesting chatter about this game up in Dakka forums and one person posted that they'd heard it was an issue with GW's back end stock and product management software. Ergo that there were boxes of Cursed City with missing parts because GW's ordering and tracking system had broken on some level. Ergo they'd under ordered on some parts and over ordered on others and neither end knew the problem was there until the shipments arrived. IT would pair well with GW having some issues with their warehouse system and their huge warehouse move - both of which wuld be highly disruptive even if there aren't issues with the system itself. Eg we've all seen that Forgeworld and the GW website have a glitch whereby products get shown "sold out" instead of just "out of stock". It's likely been there for ages, but been undetected because it was rare in the past; now with stock running out more regularly its rearing its head far more often. 

 

Cursed City is odd and it might be that the lack of clear communication is that GW itself has made sudden changes and isn't even sure what they are doing with the product. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 4/27/2021 at 11:01 PM, SirSalabean said:

I was informed by my local store that the reason cursed city changed plans was due to their print company who does all the cards and such closing down in lockdown which is who they had their plans with. 
 

GW is such a large company I would have thought they’d set up their own printing area by now. 

The problem is that the UK in general doesn't do much paper printing; a lot is done overseas. The machines are expensive and I think also GW is in the middleground - big enough that they've good demand, but too small to really justify the vast costs of the machinery required. Plus its not just machines, its skilled operators, skill sets and base resources and all. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
On 4/27/2021 at 9:41 AM, DoctorPerils said:

There are rumours of some kind of copyright infringement (that reared its head after publication), so they actually can't legally sell more copies of the game than they already have :(

I don't know any more than that though

Probably BS. You can't copyright the term Cursed City (prior art rules that out) - this is pure conspiracy BS. If that were the case the ww.ageofsigmar.com/cursed-city/ would be gone. What's gone is promotional material for a product nobody can buy - which is good consumer relations. It was the first thing that annoyed me - that all the PR and marketing was still up a week after the sell out.

Incompetence / System failure is what happened here. The reason we can bank on that is the silence. GW's silence is because the problem is commercially sensitive. If it were copyright that would be a very public battle. If it were a shipping problem they'd be able to explain that and have investors understand and claim against insurance. If it's their own software/warehouse/people mess up - that's something that would damage investors' confidence and rightly so.

The tariff issue is hard to get away from - it would still be a mess up. If tariffs are the issue it would be damaging because it would damage the made in UK image of GW. (Yes I know and you know it's made in China but this is/was a mirage).

My money was on a shipping disaster (product overboard that kill WHQ:CC's commercial viability) but this *potential* stock mess-up is effectively the same thing. And anyone managing people working from home knows this is exactly the kind of thing we all have nightmares about.

It is still damned annoying that GW is not giving the game a second life - I mean there are ways around this. Sell the boards

Edited by zedatkinszed
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

  

26 minutes ago, zedatkinszed said:

Probably BS. You can't copyright the term Cursed City (prior art rules that out) - this is pure conspiracy BS. If that were the case the ww.ageofsigmar.com/cursed-city/ would be gone. What's gone is promotional material for a product nobody can buy - which is good consumer relations. It was the first thing that annoyed me - that all the PR and marketing was still up a week after the sell out.

Incompetence / System failure is what happened here. The reason we can bank on that is the silence. GW's silence is because the problem is commercially sensitive. If it were copyright that would be a very public battle. If it were a shipping problem they'd be able to explain that and have investors understand and claim against insurance. If it's their own software/warehouse/people ****** up - that's something that would damage investors' confidence and rightly so.

The tariff issue is hard to get away from - it would still be a mess up. If tariffs are the issue it would be damaging because it would damage the made in UK image of GW. (Yes I know and you know it's made in China but this is/was a mirage).

My money was on a shipping disaster (product overboard that kill WHQ:CC's commercial viability) but this *potential* stock ******-up is effectively the same thing. And anyone managing people working from home knows this is exactly the kind of thing we all have nightmares about.

It is still damned annoying that GW is not giving the game a second life - I mean there are ways around this. Sell the boards

Unless I'm very much mistaken (I don't rule that possibility out ;)) you don't copyright a term, you trademark it. Copyright infringement is about having sentences and artwork and such being copied, or even just slightly too similar, not just a few terms here and there.

Mind you, I don't disagree about your point about incompetence / system failure, but realise that a copyright infringement would also be a sign of incompetence. The reason I don't believe it's just a stock error or shipping problem, is precisely because otherwise there'd be no reason to not just produce a new batch - by all accounts, this was a licence to print money.

(on another subject, why did you quote my post but respond to someone else who was claiming the copyrighted element was the title? I know that the following wasn't your intent, but it does sort of feel like a jab at me :/ )

  

On 4/28/2021 at 12:01 AM, SirSalabean said:

I was informed by my local store that the reason cursed city changed plans was due to their print company who does all the cards and such closing down in lockdown which is who they had their plans with. 
 

GW is such a large company I would have thought they’d set up their own printing area by now. 

Would that stop them from getting a new card supplier to produce a new batch?

Edited by DoctorPerils
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, DoctorPerils said:

  

Unless I'm very much mistaken (I don't rule that possibility out ;)) you don't copyright a term, you trademark it. Copyright infringement is about having sentences and artwork and such being copied, or even just slightly too similar, not just a few terms here and there.

Mind you, I don't disagree about your point about incompetence / system failure, but realise that a copyright infringement would also be a sign of incompetence. The reason I don't believe it's just a stock error or shipping problem, is precisely because otherwise there'd be no reason to not just produce a new batch - by all accounts, this was a licence to print money.

(on another subject, why did you quote my post but respond to someone else who was claiming the copyrighted element was the title? I know that the following wasn't your intent, but it does sort of feel like a jab at me :/ )

Not a jab at you. It's a jab at that rumour because to paraphrase Monty Python - it's a silly rumour.

If there was any actual copyright/trademark problem like that a) it'd be public and b) they'd take the website down. End of story. As long as ageofsigmar.com/cursed-city/ is up GW are promoting the game - they just aren't promoting its SALE anymore. There's a world of difference.

Look you cannot restrict the use of two word terms as commonplace as "cursed city". It would be possible to restrict "Warhammer Quest: Cursed City". Take the names of DnD rulesets "Vault of the Dracolich" is trademarkable because Dracolich is not a real word. "Vault of the Vampire" is not trademarkable because 'Vault' and 'Vampire' are commonplace and commonly associated. Same reason Trump couldn't TM "you're fired". Now take, "Dungeons and Dragons: Vault of the Vampire" this trademarkable because the string of words is not common place, and because it is specific.

All in all, just because some dude on the internet saw that there is/was a game called Cursed City and then sees that WHQ:CC is no longer being sold - and then spreads a rumour that there might be a copyright issue - does not mean THERE IS one. It's a pure conspiracy - might as well say Archaon was on the Grassy Knoll in '63. Or that Cypher was RFK's second shooter. "Cursed City" is such a commonplace and use two extremely common place words that no court anywhere would entertain a claim for this and if they did the claimant would loose, and the only winner would be lawyers. No cease and desist order could be enforced and none would be issued within 75 minutes of the product going to market for preorder. That's just silly.

Re: the product being pulled: The reason any corporate pulls a product is because in the short term its a money looser. Corporates look at Quarterly earnings, especially in a panicked time like the pandemic. And in the context of a shipping stocking mess up this makes sense. The game could actually have lost an unrecoverable ammount of money if someone order 10 times of card lot A and 10% of Card Lot B. This is not easily fixed. But I still cannot fathom the silence

Edited by zedatkinszed
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 minutes ago, zedatkinszed said:

...

Look you cannot restrict the use of two word terms as commonplace as "cursed city". It would be possible to restrict "Warhammer Quest: Cursed City". Take the names of DnD rulesets "Vault of the Dracolich" is trademarkable because Dracolich is not a real word. "Vault of the Vampire" is not trademarkable because 'Vault' and 'Vampire' are commonplace and commonly associated. Same reason Trump could TM "you're fired". Now take, "Dungeons and Dragons: Vault of the Vampire" this trademarkable because the string of words is not common place, and because it is specific.

All in all, just because some dude on the internet saw that there is/was a game called Cursed City and then sees that WHQ:CC is no longer being sold - and then spreads a rumour that there might be a copyright issue - does not mean THERE IS one. It's a pure conspiracy - might as well say Archaon was on the Grassy Knoll in '63. Or that Cypher was RFK's second shooter. "Cursed City" is such a commonplace and use two extremely common place words that no court anywhere would entertain a claim for this and if they did the claimant would loose, and the only winner would be lawyers. No cease and desist order could be enforced and none would be issued within 75 minutes of the product going to market for preorder. That's just silly.

...

That's why I tried to say that the rumours about the copyright infringement isn't to do with the title: it would be about the contents of the text and artwork.

On the other hand, your point about the website still being up and so on is well made, so I won't belabour the argument

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

What happened here is a mess up at the logistical level - either stocking, tariffs, or a messed-up order from suppliers. Basic things that have failed either due to a MIS/software failure, human error or management, development teams and marketing not communicating properly (this last one is least likely given the book - the project clearly had a large budget that somebody in backend of GW made a mess of). Or due to the UK government's mishandling of their own Brexit strategy and their failure to brief, lead, manage and aid British importers and exporters through it. (Many many business owners keep saying their being blindsided by new UK rules every week - it's a really hard time to be a British exporter) GW won't mention this as to avoid being labelled one way or the other on the Brexit debate. But honestly that's not good enough.

Anything (WHQ:CC & Crimson Court for that matter) that sells out *preorders* in 75 minutes is a logistical failure. Compare how fast Be'lakor was back in stock. Reason being ... Be'lakor's made in Nottingham. Underworld's and specialist games, terrain and endless spells have the "designed in the UK made in china" stamp on them. Now, funnily enough WHQ:CC has the made in uk stamp on it - which is clearly not the case, as MANY people pointed out you can't make the cardstock in the UK. So Brexit is a STRONG element in this mess up.

whq_cursedcity_boxback.jpg

Edited by zedatkinszed
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 hours ago, DoctorPerils said:

That's why I tried to say that the rumours about the copyright infringement isn't to do with the title: it would be about the contents of the text and artwork.

I'd be curious to know whose copyright GW could possibly infringing upon, as far as the contents of the Cursed City box are concerned. As far as I am aware, you cannot copyright general ideas (like "game where you kill a vampire") or information/game mechanics (which is how 1d4chan can get away with summarizing the rules to every battletome). What you do get to copyright is the exact text and artwork in your games. But who could possibly hold a copyright on any of the text and artwork in Cursed City besides GW?

The most plausible thing I could come up with is that one of the designers or artists of a previous Warhammer Quest somehow retains some of the rights (copyright or trade mark) to something that is relevant to Cursed City. But even that I find flimsy. Surely, those rights all reside with Games Workshop. Plus, the designer of the Silver Tower was on Warhammer Weekly recently and seemed quite excited for Cursed City.

All this is why I would personally also guess that it's not a rights issue, but a logistics issue. Somehow, GW can't supply extra copies of Cursed City right now, either because it's not profitable, or because it's not possible (no factory space/time, no access to printed materials...). As far as I know, this kind of stuff needs to be coordinated months in advance, so a last-minute collapse of their supply chain would probably need half a year or so to be rectified. In which case removing the box from the store, the promotional materials from the website and issuing a statement that "we have no current plans to produce more" would make sense. And they would have to be non-communicative about it, since they are a publicly traded company and admitting that they suffered some catastrophic breakdown somewhere would definitely hurt their stock prices.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I reckon that there has to have been multiple problems that cumulatively meant it wasn't cost effective to sort out.  Most of the rumours we've heard on their own aren't show stoppers, but if you combine them together, that's where you start getting issues that are a lot more problematic to resolve.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...