Well, it’s that time again to give you the low-down on the store. One thing we want you to know is that we consider our store a community meeting point that we are just the caretakers of. And so, with that in mind, we want to keep you up to date with everything happening with the store and the lessons we’re learning throughout the process of running it. Also, it looks like these reports may become a regular thing :)
The Importance of Preorders
A little quirk we’ve discovered since opening the store is just how rabid you can be for new games. We’ve frequently sold out of new titles within hours of them hitting the shelves and, on some occasions, had products not even hit the shelf before being sent out to postal orders or squirrelled away for preorders.
But recently, we encountered our first major disparity with allocations. Fantasy Flight Games really dropped the ball on their Miskatonic Museum mythos packs for Arkham Horror: The Card Game. They weren’t prepared for the phenomenon and there was a shortage of availability. This means, despite ordering more than we needed from our distributors, we were only allocated six. With nine preorders from you, our customers, what do we do? We went and bought the remaining we needed at full retail price because, at the end of the day, we want to make sure you get what you ordered.
Now, living in Australia means it not only takes a little longer for games to make their way to us, but we are also held to whenever our suppliers get them from the US. Because of this, sometimes, games will be pushed back (see Robinson Crusoe: 2nd Edition - a game that was due to hit our shores in December last year but none were allocated to Australian Suppliers). If what you preordered is pushed back due to non-supply, we will make sure you are updated as soon as we know more.
Another element of preorders is the price. Usually, the price we have on a preorder item is either the price the supplier has given us at the time, or, is an estimate of the price that we have put together from similar products. Due to currency fluctuations, there is a likelihood that the price will change. But this is only advantageous for you. If it turns out we have overcharged on a preorder, we’ll refund the difference and, if it turns out that the final price ends up being higher than the price you were charged, we’ll be honouring the original preorder price. So, in the end, you’ll either get the difference refunded, or get a cheaper game.
Two events now run near capacity
Seriously. Both our Tuesday Commander and Wednesday RPG Society events fill the store and, we usually end up with a full house on Monday and Thursday nights with non-event customers. Now, we don't want to charge people to play in our store as we want to promote people playing more games so, instead, space in the store is more of a first-come-first-serve deal. In saying that, if you do want to have a birthday party or social gathering in-store, let us know as soon as possible and we can either hold a few places for you or let you know if there are any large events already planned for the night.
A raise in prices... slightly
“Oh my gosh?! How dare they raise the price?! What a rip-off!” I hear you say over the aether. Don’t worry though. The regular customers amongst you may have realised by now that our prices are usually below recommended retail price. Well, with the overheads we now face as a physical store, we have to raise our prices… to recommended retail. That’s right, we may not be as cheap as other online stores, but we are still cheaper than most physical stores in the CBD. And, of course, all of our current discounts for community groups still exist so, if you’re part of a local gaming group and haven’t heard of our community discounts, shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll see what we can do.
This also means we’re going to be getting a little ruthless with our clearance section because we want to make sure we can get games on our shelves that you want. Check out what’s available at reduced prices by going to our clearance section.
The Library Service is Live
Our local library subscription is now live and we already have avid gamers taking advantage of the loaning system. To see what we have available to loan, check out our library at Libib and, if you want to sign up, drop in the store the next chance you get and we can run you through your options and get you signed up :)
The Board Game Brews return!
Over February, we trialled our Board Game Brews, special drinks crafted with a mix of flavours that fit our geeky persuasion. In February, we had the Tap for White, a sweet white chai latte with a hit of white chocolate and a hazelnut aftertaste, and the Song of Ice and Fire, a chilli and mint infused espresso shot poured over chilled milk. We weren’t expecting them to sell that well but we were blown away. You liked them so much that we actually had to double our coffee and milk orders.
So, with such a great response, we have made the decision to keep the Board Game Brews coming! This month, you can get a Hansel & Gretel, a Gingerbread and Hazelnut cappucino with a dusting of both cinnamon and chocolate, and a Queen of Hearts, a raspberry and vanilla hot chocolate. Both of these drinks are $5 each and you can only get them during March.
I think that about covers the major movements last month. There is so much more we could talk about. There's our Miniature Painting Workshops on Sundays (you can stay up to date with all of our mini stuff at the Miniatures @ Vault Games Facebook Group), and we have a large range of Reaper Miniatures and Citadel paints now available in-store.
If you’re keen to see more reports like this, let us know the next time you’re in store or in the comments on Facebook and we’ll try and get one done each month.
As always, thanks for supporting us and, until next time, happy gaming :)
-Dylan, Cassie, Jennah and Pedro.