Monday, September 14, 2015

Galactic Connections



The Galactic Connections game from Topp's has all the earmarks of a “You guys make collectable trading cards, right? Here, make us a Star Wars game, get it in the store really fast and give people some reason to collect and keep buying it. “ Topp’s, knowing a good deal when they hear it ( I knew a manufacturer who once said that he could put tables of trash in the main aisle of a Wal-mart and, due to their customer traffic, it would sell), likely jumped at the offer, though their track record with trading card games isn’t that great.  Anyone remember Monsuno? Came out from Topps in 2012 and died, oh about 2012. 

Topp’s though may not be great in trading card games but the collectability of trading cards and the creation of chase items, now at that they are great.  Galactic Connections comes with common discs, uncommon ones, rare ones, ultra rare ones, ultra ultra rare ones, ultra ultra ultra rarer ones and the rarest of all, the 14K gold Slave Leia disc, plus discs only available at specific stores. All this while ignoring the basic driver behind collectable games these days, Organized Play and a place to run it. Wal-mart has not hosted an Organized Play program for any trading card game since the original Pokemon boom back in the 1990’s when Wal-mart stores actually did host Pokemon tournaments. In order to keep any trading whatever game viable these days, a company almost has to have an OP program in place. Not a whisper of one for Galactic Connections. 

Possibly the plan is to reach out to the Local Gaming Store and ask it to host tournaments.  I remember years ago a company launched a trading card game with product only available in the mass market. The business model was to have the mass market, who buys and moves a lot of product, sell the game to players and the local gaming store got to run the tournaments. The plan, as the company saw it, was that store hosted tournaments would draw players in who would pay tournament fees and buy snacks and other products while in the store. A win-win for everyone, in the eyes of whomever developed this plan. Needless to say, stores did not embrace this idea, figuring their time better spent hosting tournaments and otherwise promoting products they could sell in the store, rather than giving customers a reason to buy more stuff elsewhere. Yep, that was a winning business plan.

I expect Galactic Connections to do decently for Wal-mart and but not gangbusters, so no OP program put in place at the store and, once the movie hype dies down, so will interest in the game.