Happy Mother's Day! Time to celebrate the women who made all of this possible, and that includes our love for gaming! Last week we had a few wonderful Kickstarters roll in, and there's a few restocks and new preorders to check out. We have a Board Game Giveaway going on right now, and there's other news to share too.
Greetings and Salutations! It's Eric, one of the store owners and for the next little bit your guide through our weekly newsletter. For those new to the newsletter this top portion contains shop news, and if you just want to get to what's new in the store all you have to do is jump down to the bottom of the post to see what we laid in last week. Let's get to it, shall we?
BOARD GAME GIVEAWAY!
So, right on the heels of the Viscounts of the West Kingdom giveaway that we closed out last week we have another Giveaway going on now! CLICK HERE to check out the sign-up page. Once again we have joined with Solosaurus to bring you the chance to win a free, still in shrink copy of The Shores of Tripoli! This is an introductory wargame that scores in the 8's on Board Game Geek and naturally has a capable solo player mode for a 1 - 4 player game. Fairly light, easy to set up and quick to play, head back to the age before the United States was a global superpower to see how we handled one of our significant early problems. This one is difficult to win, but tells an exceptional historical story. If you're a wargame veteran or looking to branch into it, you could do worse than a free copy of the game!
WHAT'S A PREORDER?
While we do explain how our system handles preorders on our website, we don't really talk about how it all works. It all begins with researching on what's coming out. Once we've decided to go with a particular game we monitor our distributors to see when they offer it as an early allocation, which we then "order" through them. That's how we come up with our available numbers. So, when customers order a game through our preorder system, it's basically like a regular order...just to be fulfilled at some point in the future when the game releases.
Now, every Monday we research our ongoing preorders and update folks if there have been any changes to the release date. Very rarely will a game go from initial entry through release with no changes, and it's important for us to keep everyone up to date. This is not a perfect science, as both publishers and distributors are notoriously slow when it comes to updates. However, the information does tend to trickle out, especially as the release date draws closer.
Once the preorder comes in we turn it around within 24 hours (unless it comes in on the weekend). As we process the preorder we let each customer know it's on the way...so the excitement can begin in earnest! I can tell you we have to pull in additional help during the holidays to meet this deadline as all the publishers try to get their games released before the Christmas season. It gets kind of crazy in December, but in a good way!
One important note. Above I say "basically" like a regular order, because sometimes the publisher does not meet the order demand from the distributors. If that happens, they may short our distributor who then in turn shorts us. There's a few reasons this may happen; either the publisher didn't produce enough games, they over allocated the distributors (which is when they had enough games, but then lost track somewhere and due to bad record keeping allowed additional orders), or there was an accident with the shipment. No matter the cause, the effect is the same. Unfortunately we don't know that's going to happen until literally the release timeframe. If we are shorted we ship in the order of those who ordered with us first to most recent. I can tell you it's frustrating for us and I know we're not the only ones! There is a silver lining though. Even if we can't satisfy our initial numbers, customers who stick with their preorder will get the game in the second wave. Best thing here is we won't change the prices. I'll tell you, if a game happens to fall into this category (which has happened only a few times) you'd be shocked at the level of price gouging going on out there! We recommend patience in these cases, we'll get you taken care of!
As you may know, Wendy and I are a husband and wife duo, proud owners and operators of Stone Valley Games... so literally a "mom and pop shop" right? Well, we generally try to take a few vacations every year - usually a week (or so) each; one in the summer and one in the early fall. In about a month we're going to be gone for a few days on our first vacation since the fall of 2019, and will be locking the physical store up. I've been toying with the idea of locking the webstore too so that no one can order anything while we're away... but you know what, we can take care of those orders when we get back. Funny thing...depending on where folks usually order their games from, we still may beat their turnaround time! Instead of locking the system out, what I'll do is display a banner on the webstore homepage and in the checkout area too - to give customers a head's up on when we'll be working those orders so they can order if they'd like, or move on if they so choose. Also, when we get back I'll put up a few photos of our trip so you can check them out.
THE WRAP UP
Okay, enough news for this week! Below are the Restocks, New Items, and Preorders added to the shop last week. You can click on the item to learn more, and many of the products have review and gameplay videos so you can see the game in action. If you're visiting our page and you'd like to keep up with our giveaways, sales, new products, and articles like this one just create an account here. Once created you will be subscribed to our newsletter and become enrolled in our loyalty system, instantly earning 50 Stones that you can use on your very first order. A Stone? One Stone is equivalent to One Cent. That doesn't sound like much, but you earn 2 Stones for every dollar spent and 5 for each product review, so though it may seem small, those savings add up fast! Redeem your Stones upon checkout, and they can save you up to 10% off your cart total. Loyalty Matters!