It's the last long weekend of the summer, and that means more time for family and friends...and games! It was a flurry of restocks, new items, and even a few preorders last week (we set them up Jay!) We also have more information on the store expansion, and we've kicked off the September board game giveaway! You'll have to check it all out!
One of my friends likes to quip when it comes to events where we gather to have fun and eat, like Labor Day, by saying, "They say you should stop eating when you feel full..." he then pauses for effect before exclaiming, "I stop eating when I feel shame!"
Ha! Hey there, I'm Eric, and Wendy and I own and operate Stone Valley Games, and I can tell you there's no shame in our game! Welcome to our weekly newsletter. If you're new, this top portion contains interesting news for the store locally, and things at large. If you want to skip all of that and just get to the new games, jump on down to the bottom of the post to see the restocks, new items, and preorders we laid in last week. Though...you may want to hang on for the next bit to find out about the Board Game Giveaway!
BOARD GAME GIVEAWAY
It's monthly giveaway time! The highly anticipated game Waste Knights Second Edition just released, and we wanted to give a copy away. However, we're not going to stop there. No...this month we're giving away three post-apocalyptical themed games: Waste Knight Second Edition, Posthuman Saga, and the Deluxe Edition of Moonshiners of the Apocalypse! Who ever thought the downfall of society could be so enjoyable!
Learn more about the Post-Apocalypical giveaway, and enter HERE. Just a note, all of our giveaways are individual events, which means you need to sign up for each of them as they come out even if you've signed up for a previous giveaway. So, jump on in and don't miss out on all this gaming goodness!
COMPASS, RULER, AND PENCIL TO PAPER
There's that old jab, "How do you keep an idiot in suspense?" and the almost immediate follow-on, "Don't worry about it, I'll tell you tomorrow." Well, that's kind of what it felt like after almost seven months on the back burner waiting for the architects to get to our store plans. We weren't receiving any updates, replies to emails, or phone calls. It was beginning to get a bit bleak and I was wondering if we should just cut and try to find someone else.
Then our number came up and now things are moving along quite nicely! In the last few weeks we've worked through an initial sketch, established a workaround for a potential elevation issue, negotiated funding, and now work begins in earnest. We should be looking at the first full draft in just a few days. It's hard to believe, but we should have finished plans in hand in just a few short weeks! It'll be great to break ground on our new store. Hey, I know it's still a long way off, but every journey begins with those first few steps!
When we first opened in 2019, I wrote a game review almost every week. After several months I started noticing those game reviews becoming bi-weekly due to the increased demands of the store, started looking for help - and found Solosaurus. We began to sponsor them, and it's been great! They continued to provide those game reviews that we were unable to complete, and things just kept on humming.
You see, I'm all for reviews. There are so many games to wade through, and more releasing every week, that having a knowledgeable opinion helps tremendously. While every reviewer is different, once you 'get to know' them; their likes, dislikes, and pet peeves, it's much easier to anticipate how you might enjoy a game based on their input. Add the fact that podcasts are easy to digest, and it's an excellent recipe for more informed purchasing decisions.
However, store operations slowly took more and more of my time until I just didn't have the bandwidth to do game reviews at all anymore. It was at that point I figured one more podcast couldn't hurt. So, we picked up Meeple, Myself and I as well.
Jason of Meeple, Myself and I is a well tenured solo gamer, and his podcast is just him. He doesn't need anyone to bounce things off of...except himself. It's an excellent presentation, not like anything else in the board game space that I know of. His reviews are not only well developed, but informative enough to really help you form your own opinions. In any case, last week he dropped Episode #3, Merchants Cove and the Concept of Roll and Writes. I highly encourage you to check it out wherever and however you normally enjoy your podcasts.
Also, he's looking for more help of a financial nature to keep the overhead of his podcasts down and started his own patreon. I'll just say, after checking out his podcasts you might consider helping the man out.
Starting on October 3rd, the USPS will be temporarily increasing shipping rates for the holidays. There is no escape... nowhere to run, and nowhere to hide. Their price increase for each shipment depends on the service, weight, and zone you're shipping to - which will look like this:
October 3rd–December 26th temporary USPS rate increase:
First Class Package Service
- $0.30 increase for all Weights and Zones
Priority Mail Cubic
- $0.25 increase for all Cubic Tiers, Zones 1-4
- $0.75 increase for all Cubic Tiers, Zones 5-9
Priority Mail Flat Rate and Priority Mail Express Flat Rate
- $0.75 increase for all Flat Rate Boxes and Envelopes
Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express, and Parcel Select Ground
- $0.25 increase for 1-10 lb, Zones 1-4
- $0.75 increase for 1-10 lb, Zones 5-9
- $1.50 increase for 11-20 lb, Zones 1-4
- $3.00 increase for 11-20 lb, Zones 5-9
- $2.50 increase for 21-70 lb, Zones 1-4
- $5.00 increase for 21-70 lb, Zones 5-9
This is going to go hand-in-hand with their anticipated overall rate increase early in 2022 as well.
I can tell you that based on our initial evaluation we are going to hold our free shipping thresholds right where they are at - just like we did with the shipping increase earlier in the year. Eventually though, something will have to give, but that's still a ways off.
Are things just continuing to pile on? I can't think of too many segments of the board game industry that don't seem to be on the pricing uptick. Well, just like everything else, we'll take it in stride and evaluate as we go. Which goes back to that bit of news on reviews, as things become more expensive, better ways to wade through games will become even more important!
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!