#190: Ultimate Railroads


“Planned obsolescence” is not just an economic term, it is a way of life for some companies. It is the practice of deliberately making a sold item frail or of limited use until it is unfashionable; this forces the consumer to replace it sooner than they would otherwise. Analysts tell us that it is best deployed by oligopolies to increase their sales volume. Completely unrelatedly, we talk about Games Workshop in the news.

Games Played Last Week:
01:26 -Mindbug (Skaff Elias, Richard Garfield, Marvin Hegen, & Christian Kudahl, Nerdlab Games, 2021)
03:36 -Ticket to Ride: Germany (Alan R. Moon, Days of Wonder, 2017)
06:18 -Chocolate Factory (Matthew Dunstan & Brett J. Gilbert, Alley Cat Games, 2019)
08:22 -Cockroach Poker (Jacques Zeimet, Drei Magier Spiele, 2004)
09:55 -My Farm Shop (Rüdiger Dorn, Pegasus Spiele, 2020)
12:05 -Royal Visit (Reiner Knizia, IELLO, 2021)
14:18 -Dunaïa (Thomas Dupont, BLAM !, 2021)
15:42 -The Siege of Runedar (Reiner Knizia, Ludonova, 2021)
20:10 -One Deck Dungeon: Abyssal Depths (Chris Cieslik, Asmadi Games, 2021)

News (and why it doesn’t matter):
23:55 Warhammer Underworlds Harrowdeep changes the card backs, prices us out of the game
27:15 Steam Up on Kickstarter: dim sum board game
28:28 David Gregg working on Nightfall 2.0
29:05 Parasocial Saturdays: streaming Dinosaur World November 6th at 10:30 AM EST on Twitch.
29:17 www.patreon.com/svwag, final week of Arkhipov Day sale

30:28 Feature Game: Ultimate Railroads (Helmut Ohley & Leonhard “Lenny” Orgler, Hans im Glück, 2021)
Board Game Arena adaptation by Elena Laskavaia.

52:25 SVWAG Presents Masterpiece Theatre: The Legend of Korra Season 2

Such a bunch of chads :joy:


Back in the day, their market was explicitly boys aged 11-13 (or thereabouts). The entire point of the Games Workshop System is to bring in a constant stream of fresh players who have to buy their games new, not second-hand. If they occasionally produce an actually good game too (e.g. Man O’ War, Necromunda with a bit of hackery), so much the better, but it’s not a core business goal.

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This is a common misconception. That’s the demographic you see playing ons stores as they’re not allowed in to pubs and often don’t have the ability to play at home. Space and parental consent on it’s use being big factors. They’ve always sold a lot more to older players but availability bias shows us all more kids in stores.

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When I was 11-13, my parents used the local gaming store as a low-cost (I won’t say “free”) after-school babysitter.


This was what their own marketing manager said in an interview with some business magazine, circa 1993 or so: they aimed their product at just-pre-adolescent boys, because they would spend lots of parental money and then get bored within a couple of years. If other people bought it too, well, that was great obviously.

I loved a lot of the GW mid-80s to early-90s titles but then they seemed to ditch everything bar Warhammer/40K. Man O’ War was great but rarely got any play time in our group.

Well, it worked on me and my parents.