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Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Wayland picks up Spartan Games via Warcradle Studios

As will be common knowledge now, the Spartan Games IPs have been picked up in their entirety by Wayland Games via their Warcradle moniker.

This is a Very Good Thing.

Why? Aren't Wayland a horrible online store who give big discounts and fail to fulfil delivery promises? Haven't they ruined WWX?

Well, no, I don't think either of those things is true. Wayland are, of course, a pretty big online supplier in Europe, but the feedback you get on what they're like is mixed and tends to be anecdotal. Have people had some horrible experiences with them? Yes, I'm sure that's true. Is this reflective of the wider company? I doubt it.

Wayland offer big cuts off RRPs for a lot of games, and they may not have stock of 100% of what orders they take - this is normal retail practice and as with anything, "your mileage may vary". I placed an order with Wayland a week or so ago and it was fulfilled very promptly with no issue - it was just for paints, and I'm sure they've dozens of them in stock. If it was a pre-order for "the next big exciting thing in gaming", and my order was beyond their initial stocking order fulfilment, I may have had a longer wait. I'm not going to judge them on the past experiences of others on the internet.

But what about WWX?

Well, what about it? Before Wayland got hold of the game it was a pretty out-there experience, with no visible presence in the UK to speak of. Since they've had it, I've seen booths at two shows this year, which is 100% of the shows I've attended - not a bad hit rate so far. If they do the same with Firestorm, that's great news for expanding the fanbase.

Even better, I listened to episode 219 of The D6 Generation today whilst driving to and from an appointment for work. Stuart Mackaness, general Manager at Wayland/Warcradle, was the third chair, and he seems to be a very balanced and reasonable guy. Even better, he certainly seems to know how to run a game both commercially and mechanically. His rationale behind some of the (self-admittedly brutal) changes in WWX was sound, and made decisively - it was a definitive direction and deliberate change. That's great news if its applied to the Spartan franchises.

So I'm hopeful for the future of our beloved Spartan Games IPs - even if the future does not involve myself, TheoryMachine and departs from prior direction somewhat, I think now at least we can have hope that changes are being made for rational and commercial reasons, rather than on the whim of a single person. That makes a HUGE difference, and I'm looking forward to what happens next.

Bring it on!!!