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Other companies miniatures.

Post by S W Dickson on Mon Dec 21, 2009 2:08 pm

Okay, as our aim is to publicly publish a work about wargaming, I thought I'd start a thread here to see what you guys think.

Fact one : We are not going to be popular if our game is. Many wargames manufacturers make a wad of cash on selling their rules.
Fact two : We want a whole bunch of pictures to illustrate our rules - especially through examples of play. As we are not in the business of making and selling miniatures, we may find ourselves using those manufactured by someone else.
Fact three : We are making a competing product. This is not a review or editorial piece which can count as free advertising for these guys - we will be seen as a competitor.

So, how do we proceed? Well, some companies cover themselves with a blanket ban on using their "IP" (read models) in any outside work not covered by fair use (editorial). See GW for best example.

Others, have been known to skate thin lines anyway with regards to IP.

I propose we approach some companies and ask their permission to photograph and use their models in the context of the rules. We may also ask them if it is okay to modify and/or convert their designs. With a agreement such as this, we can go on in good faith. We know that GW would probably say no, but if we were to get a "big name" on board, I could see many others following suit. Especially the miniature-focussed manufacturers. We may also make an agreement that if they wish, they can create new models specifically from our games, and we would only look for a small return, say 1%, to cover our web costs and stuff. What d'ya think?

Here's a small list of modelmakers that I would start with -

Armorcast
Scibor Minis
Old crow/Ainsty
Maxmini
Mantic
Pig-Iron
Heresy Miniatures

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Re: Other companies miniatures.

Post by Kane on Mon Dec 21, 2009 2:49 pm

I would recommend branching out into non-traditional miniatures. Say, OneMonk. He does paper minis that are simply amazing. He has some associated artists as well and all have been very open to having their work featured in other free publications.

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Re: Other companies miniatures.

Post by sucramreverse on Mon Dec 21, 2009 5:16 pm

I like it SW, though we wouldn't have to worry about IP if we just did illustrations. But if we can find a way to use real pictures, I'm all for it. I'm sure those people who only make miniatures with no rules would be happy to let us advertise them.

They'd have to be okay with us also advertising other manufacturers though, unless we only use one company. but then we would be awfully closely associated with them...
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Re: Other companies miniatures.

Post by SpaceMonkey on Mon Dec 21, 2009 7:01 pm

The more miniature manufactures the better. Let’s not limit the rules. There are a lot of manufactures out there without a set of rules for their figures. In fact the original set of rules for 40k (Rogue Trader) was a generic set of rules. The rules just gave you a frame work to make up your units/men according to your figures and what you wanted. They even said you didn't have to use their figures (imagine them saying that now). You could make up you own world or you could slot it into the 40k universe. It was all based on a point system with points for different types of guns, vehicles, humanoids, aliens, special abilities, etc. You didn’t have to use GW figures at all. It wasn’t until later that they realised that there was more money to make if they made it more exclusive.

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Re: Other companies miniatures.

Post by Zinkala on Mon Dec 21, 2009 9:59 pm

I went through some of this about 2 years ago when I was involved in producing the latest version of Armies of Arcana so I have a few relevant points.

1) Rules generally don't make a lot of money for their publishers. Most of the companies producing rulesets either do it for love of the game or to help push sales of their minis. A lot of games designers are quite friendly even with the competition. It's a small group really compared to some enterprises. The real negatives will come from "fans" more than any competitors.

2) Most manufacturers are appreciative of any advertising of their minis and will gladly give you permission to use photos and such in any publications as long as you give them credit. Not many are IP control freaks like GW. If you like their minis send them an e-mail about your project and ask permission to use their models. The worst that can happen is they say no.

3) People like Kane mentioned would be a big asset. Find as many artists and such as you can. That way if you run into a prima donna or someone that doesn't want to do what you want you have other options. I like variety myself too so the more the merrier IMO.

4) Developing your own minis can be a lot of fun. I have a fantasy army being sculpted now that I want to get into production someday. But it takes time and can be expensive if you want quality. I only wish I had any talent at sculpting. My work with green stuff is only a couples steps above crack filling.

I like generic games now that allow me to use my own creativity and any minis I have or want to buy but many people want "brand name" minis for a game. Early on you'll need to decide which way you want to go. The good part about generic is you can focus on the rules over worrying about what models you need to produce.

Hope some of this helps.

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Re: Other companies miniatures.

Post by S W Dickson on Tue Dec 22, 2009 2:02 pm

Cheers guys, will draft up something.

I just want a quick guideline for those of us photographing and building armies that we can include in the publication. No real endorsement would be intended. Means we can happily chug along without stepping on toes. If we can say "use anything by x,x,x,x,x, or x companies, and you can include it.

I quite fancy creating a selection of paper cutouts for download as well. Make a sheet of foldable D6, and even a range ruler, and we could have the first "as free as you can possibly get" wargame.

How about multipart paper cutouts - like the old dress-up dolls your sister played with...

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Re: Other companies miniatures.

Post by El Grego on Tue Dec 22, 2009 2:51 pm

Zinkala wrote:

2) Most manufacturers are appreciative of any advertising of their minis and will gladly give you permission to use photos and such in any publications as long as you give them credit. Not many are IP control freaks like GW. If you like their minis send them an e-mail about your project and ask permission to use their models. The worst that can happen is they say no.



Probably the key phrase, along with getting permission. The list of those minis to exclude would be useful also.

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Re: Other companies miniatures.

Post by SpaceMonkey on Tue Dec 22, 2009 3:34 pm

I like the paper wargaming idea (there are some already out there) but I don't know how popular it is. I think as longs as the basing (of the paper models) matched the industry standard basing scale (I will not mention names) I think it could work. At least you give people an option. I personally don’t mind the paper models but noting beats a lump of lead (even plastic or resin).

On a side note if you want a cheep (free for a non-saving version) and simple 3D paper model making software you can look at a program called Pepakura.
http://www.tamasoft.co.jp/pepakura-en/
Plus you can also do it in Blender.
http://blenderartists.org/forum/showthread.php?t=101194

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Re: Other companies miniatures.

Post by sucramreverse on Tue Dec 22, 2009 3:55 pm

I like the paper gaming idea too, would give beginners something to work with before having to shell out time and money for decent miniatures.

(Personally, for play testing, I use some little green army men toys I got for $1. Based on foam core they are just slightly taller than 28mm scale)
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Re: Other companies miniatures.

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