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Projections — 3/25/2015

I have returned.  The Gamma Trade Show in Vegas was a good learning experience. It went much better for me than the Diamond Summit that was in Vegas last year. Learned more, got more accomplished, and had more fun. Fireside Chat games presentation was a hit with me so I have ordered gaming material that they supply. Starting this week we have already expanded the games we carry. In the next few weeks we will have more and more games.
 Wizkids presentation came off as snotty  to me. One person brought up about not being able to contact Wizkids about an issue with Alliance. The higher up at Wizkids actually gave out his cell number. He bragged about how much Wizkids means to Alliance. Which I already figured out last year when Alliance allowed such a unprepared and unthought out program known as Con In the Store with Wizkids.  Impressive I thought. Where was phone number during the Con In Your Store last year? Wizkids avoided and ignored every attempt at communication with them last year about the Con In Your Store Program. One person asked if Wizkids is going to do anything about Wal Mart’s early selling of Wizkids material. It was brushed aside with a we can talk about that after this is done comment. Yes, I know Target has been taking a lot heat for early selling but the person did say Wal Mart. And I know these two chain retailers are not the only big chain retailers breaking street date by selling early. Wizkids also stated that their online site will play a bigger roll in how much material is sent to a store for events such as the upcoming Age of Ultron Event.  Meaning if ten people show up for month one  and are signed up online for Age of Ultron then on a later month Age of Ultron prize support and boosters will be sent for ten players. Which did not go over well. If ten players does indeed show up for the store’s first Age of Ultron that doesn’t mean just ten will show up at later events. Last weekend we had 14 players for heroclixs over our “Mystery Event”. It doesn’t mean the “Mystery Event” was really good it means 14 people had a schuduel that allowed them to play that day.  With Age of Ultron I could easily have ten players one month and twenty the next. People have anniversary’s, birthdays, family, and more that could prevent them from making a Heroclix event and then they may be able to make the next one. So limiting boosters for Age of Ultron seems foolish.  10 people show for one then 12 show up next month those extra two are just out of luck? And after so many fumblings by Wizkids over their website lanch this one is for real? I am not wasting my time this time. Another point was made over only five maps being in OP Kits now. We were told every map would increase the cost of the OP kit. One of the Wizkids reps said to the person asking the question you said you had ten players well that means the five maps cover the ten players. No, the person replied that means five people leave with out getting a map to play with later on. Which there was no reply too. Another person asked if Wizkids was ever going to do anything about getting their never ended release dates to actually be right the first time. The response was it was out of their control. That was weak. NECA having the Wizkids brand just goes to show you sometimes it’s just luck and having what people want is all a company  needs.  Good management and customers support is a waste of Wizkids time. Heroclix and Magic are like an addictive subsistence. One just can’t stop once they start no mater what.
Wizkids said they want to start cracking down on their prize support being sold online is why they want online sign up for their events. Which is fine but after the less than forthcoming Con In Your Store rip off event and the War of Light Event where retailers were told you should order high because Wizkids most likely will not have enough for months 5 and 6 and then come months 5 and 6 there were plenty on hand still maybe its time to be open and honest with the retailers that sell your product?  If I only get ten booster of Age of Ultron as part of the event then odds are I will be excluding players in a future event which doesn’t lead to more sales. Twenty a month should be fine for the store. And even then we could have more than twenty. Imagine having ten boosters and twenty players show.  The heroclix website has been around for years and Wizkids has basically taught people to ignore signing up on it. I mean seriously one of the online users name is judgesarebedwetters? This is going to lead to a better way of doing things?
And no I am not sure when Justice League Dice Masters has been pushed back to. That truly is out of my control. I mean if Wizkids can’t control their release dates how can I promote their product?
Back to the Gamma Trade show. I did learn a lot. Though my original goal for this year was to promote and push comic sales more which we are still doing. There are games out there that I think would do well in the store. Such as an upcoming Mega Man card game. The comic is a hit here with kids at the store. My Little Pony the card game. Again kids love the comic.  These are games I will start carrying. We also have already added to our selection with more to come.The Dragons of Tarkir pre releases are done. The midnight one had a good crowd, the noon one had more, and the 8 o’clock one had the most. Sunday’s first pre release was a good start for Sunday pre releases.
All went pretty good. Told multiple people no outside food or drink and they took it well. Usually I am told but other stores let me.
Aaron will open at midnight Friday morning on the 27th for one hour to sell the Dragons of Tarkir set.
Starting to place orders for Modern Masters. Getting a vague idea what we should be receiving. Getting demand for a Modern Masters draft.
Usually right after a pre release I get to order the next available set. With a small paragraph of information I get to base my orders on how much Magic will sell. Modern Masters is a pretty safe bet on what to order. Meaning as much as possible. Other sets after the main block comes out can be a guessing game.
Been working non stop since returning to Iowa from Vegas. And to everyone who asked or will ask how was my vacation was it was work. Vendors try to get you to spend money. The trade show started at 8 every morning. Being somewhere by 8 and leaving at 6 is not a vacation.
That said I did actually have some fun.  Even ended up dancing on Saint Patrick’s Day. Granted I checked to see if I had been pick pocketed afterwards.  Enjoyed some time by the pool. Actually relaxed and let my mind drift and thought about other things than all the responsibilities in life. I thought about old friends and family and good old times.
The best part of the trade show was talking with other business owners. Some do not do anything with gaming events. The ones that dropped them all reported more profits. I will admit not having Saturday Standard has been good. Magic sales are up that day thanks to people  just trading during Standard play. Now months before that standard was making money  but the person that was spending the most had a falling out with another player. Having someone spend money leads to others spending money. Having people not spend money leads to other people not spending money. The player who stayed originally felt bad about what went down but weeks later said he no longer cared. I said you cost me money  and again he said he didn’t care. So I just dropped Saturday Standard. Providing gaming events is a drain on time and resources.  If people don’t appreciate it then it needs to be gone.
Some stores have Dungeons & Dragons but not Magic gaming. Wizards of the Coast even told a person who owned a store to come see them afterwards since that owner could not sign up for D&D events due to not having Magic events.  Wizards of the Coast was going to make sure he could get signed up for D&D. Pretty cool I thought.  Another store owner brought up Pathfinder selling PDFs of their products online and thanked Wizards of the Coast for not following it because physical stores can not sell PDFs of the games. I agreed with that. Pathfinder has never took off or done well at Rodman Comics. I can get two groups of D&D players but nothing for Pathfinder.
One store owner told me Friday nights at his store was for miniatures. Said his group painted and spent a lot of money so he had that for Friday nights instead of Friday Night Magic.
Also talked to a person that was a lot like me. He owned a store and had a day job. We both agreed that it saved us a ton on insurance.
And then I got back to Iowa and reality. Was hoping to talk to a friend about taking a vacation Tuesday but had to take care of a shipment instead. It was suppose to make it Monday but Fedex decided not to deliver it. Ended up Tuesday playing delivery man. Good exercise at least.
Burnt out badly. Even made a snarky comment to someone complaining about the store about maybe I just won’t renew the lease this year. I need some sleep. I need a vacation. Need a recharge.  Feel like the Jim Lee Superman picture that we have on as our cover on Facebook. I have had enough.
Come next week I plan on talking with a friend about going on a vacation. Right now I am not in the mood to start with renewing the lease next month. A friend of mine told me “Rod, you just don’t quit.” Meaning I get things done, I see things through, but I also don’t stop even though maybe I should. To sign up for two more years of this I need  to get the fire in my belly back and be able to fight the never ending battle. As of now the naysayers have me wondering. I need to recharge and get some peace of mind. I don’t have that right now. I am used to all the haters but apparently putting up with them and being dead tired is my kryptonite.
DC’s Convergence starts in April. I have no idea how well the spin offs are going to sell. I am a long time fan of comics and I enjoyed the various points in time that Convergence is to go back too. Heck I like Barbara as Oracle better than  Batgirl. Crisis on Infinite Earths, Zero Hour, and more glad to see them revisited. Though I have no idea how much interest current fans will have of DC’s past.
Come June DC is offering some great incentives for comic stores to order their comics. Order heavy and be able to return unsold product? I can do that.
As DC focuses on past storylines Marvel’s upcoming Secret Wars does the same. Their spin offs focusing on past storylines such as Armor Wars, the original Secret Wars, Days of Future Past,  and more I enjoyed decades ago but how well will today’s readership take to such spin offs?
Marvel is offering the more I order the more variants I can get along with a better discount. I of course like DC’s ability to do a full return more.
Though I admit to a weakness for the Secret Wars action figure variant covers. I would love to see a real retro Secret Wars Deadpool action figure.
I still have my original Secret Wars figures along with my Super Powers figures.
Dark Horse Comics with out the Star Wars license is getting destroyed sales wise here at the store. The various Aliens and Predator projects are not filling the void.
That said Star Wars the main books is doing great sales at Marvel. Darth Vader is doing solid business. Princess Leia is a distant third sadly. Though it is only a limited series. And at the risk of sounding sexist when I was a boy and I am assuming this is true of others roughly my age Princess Leia wasn’t our favorite character in Star Wars. We were boys. Girls had cooties back then!
Star Wars is also one of the few Marvel books that keeps people coming back for more. Meaning it isn’t just a flood of people picking up the first issue and dropping it. The first three issues of Star Wars have sold very well. With the upcoming Star Wars movie I do not see that changing.
Amazing Spiderman was the top selling monthly  Marvel book for the store. Star Wars has been able to beat Amazing and may be able to giving our number one monthly book seller Batman a run for his money. Ever since the New 52 started Batman has been the number one selling monthly book for us.
Star Wars currently is a book with a strong creative talent on it. Batman has had a great creative team on it since the New 52 started.  The comic industry needs better talent. Talent that can put out monthly books.
Just a few more months and Wizard World Des Moines is here!
Been typing up Projection columns for years now. What I have learned.
A lot of our comic customers read the Projections.
A smaller amount of our Magic customers read Projections. I know that because so many Magic players ask questions that have been beaten to death on Projections. Such as are you going to Wizard World Des Moines?  I only bring it up every week on the website that we are going. So unless Ryan gets a change of heart on me he is running the booth and we should have a good turn out. Only convention we will be doing this year. To much time and effort for us to attend smaller shows.
Our heroclix customers are about in the middle of the two groups.
Which means I should focus future Projections more about the comic side of the business. That isn’t a slight to the Magic customers it is what it is. It is far more important to actually come in to the store and actually spend money than read what I type. Magic customers do that.
This year I have focused more on the comic side of the business. Saturday Magic is no more. Saturday Magic sales have actual grown since people do not just wait till Saturday night Magic to trade cards amoung themselves. Sundays and Mondays I debate about keeping Magic gaming on those days. After March I will reevaluate and see.
We now have play mats with the Rodman Comics logo on them. Come on in and pick up one up. Already sold some to various Magic players and even sold one to a Heroclix player.
April 5th will be Easter so we will be closed that Sunday.
April 12th at noon we will have our first Warhammer tournament! $15 entry fee. And there will be a prize.
May 2nd is Free Comic Book Day. I have ordered a ton of comics for that day. Rodman Comics logo will be printed on the DC Comics Free Comic Book Day one. Working on getting free copies of the comic to the students at Ankeny Centennial High School. Avengers Age of Ultron will be out that weekend. We will have free comics up at the Ankeny Springwood 9 movie theater. Working on other venues and locations to help spread the word.
Last year people only jokingly asked for free pizza and is every comic free in the store. Along with why don’t you do Free Comic Day like other stores? So that was a plus.
Again I look at Free Comic Book Day as a Customer Appreciation Day. It will be crowded when we open. There will be a lot of new faces. There will be a lot of people who show up just for that one day and will never be back in the store again. But for those of you who have supported the store. Those of you who like having the store available for your collecting needs. To me this is for you.  To say thanks to you. To everyone who comes in every Wednesday and gets their weekly comics. To all the monthly returning customers getting their monthly comics. Come on in and get your selection of free comic books.
This year’s Free Comic Book Day offerings are:
Bob’s Burgers, Bongo Comic Free For All (the Simpsons), Boom Studios 10th Anniversary FCBD Special, Dark Circle Comics, Fight Club, DC Comics Divergence, DC Comics Divergence variant with the Rodman Comics logo, Doctor Who, Perfect Square Presents Pokemon, Savage Dragon Legacy, Secret Wars 0, Spongebob Freestyle Funnies, Transformers Robots in Disquise, 2000 AD Special (Judge Dredd), Avengers 1, And then Emily was Gone, Bodie Troll and Friends, Captain Canuk, Comic Book Legal Defense Fund Defend Comics, Comics Festival, Dark Horse All Ages Avatar PVZ Bandette, Grim Fairy Tales Alice in Wonderland, Graphix Spotlight Cleopatra in Space, Gronk and Friends, Hatter M Love of Wonder,Hip Hop 3 in 1 Featuring Cosplayers (Mature Readers),Ice Bayou Blackout, Lady Justice, Legendary Comics Sampler, March Grand Prix, Mercury Heat, Motorcycle Samurai, Overstreet Comicbook Marketplace, Phantom Special, Rabbids, Sonic the Hedgehog Mega Man unite prelude, Chakra the invincible Steampunk Goldilocks, Street Fighter Combo, Stuff of Legends Call to Arms, Supermutant Magic Academy, Tales of Honor, Teen Titans Scooby Doo Team Up, Terrible Lizard, the Tick, TMNT prelude to vengence, Valiant 25th special, JOJO’s Bizarre Adventure and Yu Gi Oh, Worlds of Aspen, and Jurassic Strike Force 5 One Shot.
That is a lot of comics. And that is less titles than last year. Which I feel is for the best. Less can be more.
Marvel’s Secret Wars 0 will be a hot comic. DC’s Divergence should be also. The Rodman Comics variant cover should be red hot. I say that biased as can be.
Hop 3 in 1 Featuring Cosplayers for mature readers might be a long shot.
Wish Image had done another Walking Dead comic for this years Free Comic Book Day. Savage Dragon is not the Image character to go with this year.
Good to see Pokemon and Yu Gi Oh comic material. That has a chance of getting young new comic readers into comics.
Simpsons is always a hit at the store so Bongo Comics Free For All is a safe bet.
Motorcycle Samaria? Ooooookay…..
What no Zombie Tramp this year? Though surprisingly that title is still being published. Which is more than I can say for a lot of the titles released for Free Comic Book Day 2014.
No new Red Giant comic material this year? Odd. Just googled it and found they have stock on the stock market. Currently worth .89 cents as I type this. Ouch.
For this years Free Comic Book Day we will be having it the same way we had it last year. It works for us. One copy of each Free Comic Book Day comic per person. No outside food or drink of course. No pizza. The movie theater will be rented for Avengers Age of Ultron of course. We will open at 11. And of course you are more than welcomed to buy comics on Free Comic Book Day from us.
Hoping you see less of me here in the next few weeks. I need a recharge.  Being burnt out is not a good feeling.
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Curious about Rodman Comics but can’t make it in? Check out our online market place.
As always stop on in and get your collecting needs taken care of at Rodman Comics.

 

 

 

Projections — 8/13/2014

The Bob Layton countdown. Less than 53 days till October 4th. I have gathered the various back issues we have at the store that he has worked on along with buying issues so there will be material to sell that day if you want something signed. Saturday sold a copy of Iron Man 150 to a customer to have signed by Bob. The customer read it and liked it so much he is now trying to hunt down issue 149. Part of the Doctor Doom vs Iron Man story. You are also welcomed to bring comics to have him sign. Please be reasonable though. He will also be doing sketches.
Please join us in welcoming Bob Layton for his first trip to Iowa. I hope after his first trip to Iowa he will be willing to come back some day. Also feel free to check out his website at http://www.boblayton.com/. He does commissions. Darn good ones too. I have one hanging up at the store.
On CBR’s website here is a small part of their interview with Dan Didio and Jim Lee:
On the thinking behind DC’s weekly titles: “The goal for weekly comics is very simple,” said DiDio. “It’s to bring people into stores every week. To give them a destination book. I know that I love to go to the comic shop every week, but you’re not sure what might be out or what’s not out but you’re looking for an excuse. So the weekly comics sort of give people an excuse to go in there. You know you have that book, and while you’re there you can see what else is out there and grab it. Like I said, there’s so many books out there. Nobody comes into a comic shop, at least not that I know of, that goes in and buys just one comic. They go in and they see one and they find something else and they buy a bunch. So now what we like to do is it gives them a reason to come in, buy your weekly book, and then hopefully they find the other stuff that we’re putting out that week as well.”
I agree with that. When the monthly regular Batman title comes out I know it is going to be a strong sales week. People love Batman. Comic stores need people coming into their stores and buying something. People need a reason. They want to be entertained. Put a comic out that people will come in and pick up as soon as possible. Quick cash flow also helps businesses.
Walking Dead 130 had an unexpected twist. Don’t want to spoil it for you. If you are not already reading this title you should be.
Wizkids, which is owned by NECA who makes Heroclixs continues to do all the wrong moves. After already delaying the Con In Your Store materials to arrive on August 8th we didn’t receive anything that day. Of course there is no way to directly contact Wizkids about this. Alliance who carries Wizkids products contacted me that day asking if we had received it. I of course said no. So come Monday Alliance was suppose to call and let me know what is going on. That was Friday. Monday I ended up calling in the morning. Asked if there was anymore info on the Con material. Was asked “You didn’t get yours?” Um, no we talked about this Friday. Was told they would call back later. As of 2:30 Monday I called again and left a voicemail and have been told nothing. I did get a call back at 2:40 letting me know come Wednesday they should have an answer. I only spent over a grand to be in the Con In Your Store program. My payment wasn’t delayed at all. Meaning my money was taken as soon as possible. Then days before we were originally suppose to be able to have the Con In Your Store they delayed it so the earliest a store could have the event was August 8th. August 8th gets here and I still have nothing. People contacted me wanting to know what I have received. But I have not received anything. Thankfully I did not have the Con Event on that weekend. And now the 16th is a “Surprise and Delight” Heroclix event since I had pushed back the Con In Your Store Day to then. But I still have no idea if I will receive anything by then. It is Wednesday morning as I type this up. If there is any updates today I will post them on our Facebook page.
There is no tracking number even.
The Amazing Spiderman Team base, Trinity base, Captain America Sentinel, and Shuma I am now being told Alliance doesn’t even have these on hand to send out to any of the stores that signed up for the Con In Your Store program. And they do not know when they will receive them. Shuma and the Trinity base have already been released at conventions and Shuma was available online also. The Captain America Sentinel is a repaint. The Amazing Spiderman Team base is reusing the Brother Hood of Evil’s team base. And Wizkids does not have them available yet. But they were part of the Con In Your Store Program. And when they do come out I have to pay for them.
Friday when I talked with Alliance the sales rep said he noticed I scaled back on the Galactic Guardians Heroclix coming out. I said yeah. I already spent a grand on product Wizkids couldn’t sell to get the Con In Your Store material and I still don’t even have that. Dealing with Wizkids takes up to much of my time. And as a business owner time is money.
I was hoping to show what was received for the Con In Your Store program to everyone who showed to play War of Light round III Saturday August 9th. It is very hard to hype random “surprise and delight” items that could be an old Chase like Sun Girl to a rare in demand Heroclix.
Come Wednesday I have to hope that my store wasn’t over looked and we are still receiving hopefully good heroclixs for the Con In Your Store. And that Wizkids doesn’t find out they don’t have enough to cover us if they overlooked us.
Business wise Wizkids causes more headaches than any other business that I deal with. Meaning out of all the vendors that get my money Wizkids beats them all for being a pain in the butt. From having a heroclix set where retailers had to order so much to receive prize support for the set and then on the day it releases no one received the prize support. Wizkids still stayed silent on it. Alliance who distributes their product even had on the invoice the prize support but listed as not shipped. Then we the retailers all found out that there never was any prize support. Wizkids kept silent about that little fact right up to the release date. And never did I get an apology or any word about this from Wizkids.
Will I get an apology or anything to make up for the Con In Your Store program headaches? Doubt it. Wizkids is set up that there is no direct contact with them. Everything goes through the only two vendors that carry their products, Diamond and Alliance. Wizkids is making money so they don’t care about the small businesses that sell their product.
I am tired of guessing how much War of Light material for their six month event I will receive. Their whole you better stock up because we don’t expect to have any for months 5 and 6 is another headache. I am not in the warehouse business Wizkids. Stock up your own material. Seriously having small businesses buy product that they can not sell for months is a drain on any business.
Who the heck goes out and buys a car they can not drive for 6 months?
As regular readers of this column know this isn’t the first column that I have pointed out Wizkids business practice. And quite frankly I am tired of typing about them. I know Wizkids is not going to apologize to me or anyone for this. I know they will do nothing to help right any of the problems they have caused.
So I finally slashed my heroclix orders by over half on the Galactic Guardians set due out this month. Along with future heroclix releases. I think it is a good business move regardless. The movie version of the Galactic Guardians just came out. And now the Marvel Comics Galactic Guardians are coming out. War of Light round three was this month. The Con In Your Store program is suppose to happen soon. To many heroclix events at once.
And if the new set of Galactic Guardians is popular I will just order more after selling out of my original order. I do not see a sell out of the product like what happened with the Deadpool set. Though from what I understand the popular zombie chase heroclixs will be back for this set. The team bases for the zombies are in the prize support.
Wizkids looking like they do not know what they are doing just makes me look like I don’t know what I am doing when it comes to dealing with their products. Wizkids uses up to much of my time. Time that can be better used promoting comic sales and other products whose companies seem to want to worth with me even more.
Magic From The Vault: Annihilation is due out this month. Next month will be another prerelease for Magic for the newest set.
The State Fair is going on. That always brings in out of town people to the store. It always amazes me how people who come from areas with no comic stores really like the store.
Heck for War of Light Heroclixs we had one person drive two hours to play since he had so much fun last time he was here.
Great Saturday with the Magic Game day, War of Light Heroclixs, and all the out of town customers. Other than wondering what was going on with the Wizkids Con In the Store program…..
Been more people asking about Star Wars X Wing Miniatures gaming. I hear you all. Just need things to slow down first. Right now it is looking like maybe in the middle of October for the return of Saturday gaming for X Wing.
The whole does gaming have a positive effect on sales question? When I went to Vegas for the Summitt and talked with follow store owners the ones that seem to be doing the best were the ones that didn’t have games going on in their stores. There were ones who told me their business improved once they stopped having games.
Getting a group of people together gaming can at times lead to peope getting hurt feelings and not coming back due to another fellow player. Or a rude person arriving that no one wants to deal with. Or people with no morals. Prizesharks that want the prize so badly they may tell others they hate the store but they have to have the prize. During the War of Light I had to tell a person to play his own game and quit bothering other peoples games. I even told him he already cost me two heroclix players. He didn’t even seem surprised.
Heck, two gamers in the past wanted to be on my emailer list. Just a few problems. I hadn’t done a customer emailer for  months and was putting the news letter on the website and I had never told them one ever existed. They wanted to see if I would be foolish enough to email a copy without blind carbon copying my other customers on the list. They wanted to give a copy of my customers email address to help out another gamer at a different location.
Andy helped get the Magic gaming in better shape. He pointed out having free Magic events was a drain on the store. I had another person claim it was “unfair” to people if I didn’t let people play for free. How many businesses encourage people to hang out for free?
When heroclix gaming first started and I started getting official heroclix prizes out for free that was a big mistake. People would show up for the free events. I remember one person being so impressed that I had over twenty heroclix players and I ended up telling him yeah but I would have made more money working at Burger King. I remember trying to talk one of them into just having Heroclixs at his house since I didn’t make any sense for me to host heroclixs for them. Drafts and events where people had to buy something were the complete opposite of free nights . I would hear oh I don’t have any money. But after the free heroclixs and prizes were awarded they would go out for pizza and beer. Which we all know doesn’t cost anything. Steve pointed out what Andy was telling me about Magic. You need to make money.
Being nice and help full and letting people hang out for free just told some people if he is dumb enough to let us hang out for free let’s do it.
Free events were done away with. And money wise gaming was doing a lot better.
I understand the idea of having gaming is to get people into a store. It is one advantage that stores with a physical location have over internet businesses.
It is like the store I told about after I went to Kansas City awhile back. A group of Magic players loved playing at their local store. Then they decided to get all their boxes of at the time new Magic material online. And they didn’t tell the owner that they didn’t plan on buying any from him. That owner had to liquidate what he thought they were going to buy by selling it at a lost to another store who sells gaming material but doesn’t hold any games. Who told me this story. That store did go out of business later on. Now the people that played there stop in the store that doesn’t run gaming events and just sells the product  and talk about how they miss the old store that they used to play at.
For whatever reason some gamers think of gaming at a store as an entitlement. Not all. Just some. It is like some have been taught that.
I understand it has to worth it for a person to come here. The flip side is it also has to be worth it for the business to host gaming.
Just like Star Wars X Wing Miniatures. Had a record sales day selling them after not having any Star Wars X Wing Miniature gaming for months. It is part of the reason I am hesitant to have it come back. It was doing fine till I bought prize support for it and had to listen to whining about the prize support not being good enough. Even though the Star Wars X Wing Miniature gaming was still free. It went from playing and getting nothing to still playing and getting something and still not paying anything. But the thank you for buying prize support was whining. Then a person who whined about the prize support had enough balls to tell me to order different prize support. Hell no.
If I had never ordered prize support people would still have been playing for fun. It is like prize support teaches some players they are owed it.
When I go to a bar I don’t demand a free shot glass because they are lucky enough that I showed up. I should try that sometime and have someone record it and put the results on YouTube.
The new D&D is out. Sold more D&D material than I ever did when there was D&D gaming here.
I am sure if the Con In Your Store program wasn’t such a pain I would be in a better mood about gaming at the store.
There are a lot of gamers that do treat the store as a typical business and that is good. There are also very respectful gamers. And you should easily know who you are. Odds are I have sat down and even played with you. I enjoy the gaming. But as I have stated before the owners of the building I lease from don’t care how many gamers play, how many Facebook likes the store has, or how many positive online reviews the store has. They just care that the lease check clears.
I may just to easy going of a person. An easy mark for some people, or so they think. A more business attitude and/or look at the store I may need to develop. Time for me to work on becoming the Comic Book Guy from the Simpsons.
And then we had a birthday heroclix game celebration at the store Tuesday . And Matthew’s look afterwards is priceless. Makes it all worth wild. His picture is up on our Facebook page.
The website is growing. I have even had to do some updates to it already since some items sold already. Yes, I am surprised. I think I only had roughly 40 items on it last week. I really dropped the ball by not having the website check out working a lot sooner. The good news is I have added more items to the marketplace and hope to add more every week.
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Everything for Bob Layton’s arrival to Rodman Comics is good to go. The hotel is paid. The tickets are paid. Thunderbirds are go!
Hope to see you at Rodman Comics. Well unless you are a jerk. Unless you have money. Naw, just joking. No jerks please, and no banging your head on the display case please.

Projections — 8/6/2014

It has started. The countdown till Bob Layton arrives at Rodman Comics. Spread the word. Let your follow comic fan know he will be here October 4th for the 4th Anniversary of the store. Just a few more months.
So far responses has been very positive. People are shocked I managed to get a comic legend to do a signing here. He will also be doing sketches.
Again feel free to check out his website to learn more about Bob Layton. http://www.boblayton.com/
Also feel free to have him do a commission for yourself. His rates are on his website.
Had one of my employees start gathering comics here that Bob has done work on. We have older material to newer comics on hand of various work Bob has done. I did not know he had worked on Rom Spaceknight and a Marvel Star Wars cover before.
I am thinking about having a commission or two done by Mr Layton. One idea is Rom vs Iron Man. Or the Rodman mascot trying to escape Iron Man with a black book marked Tony Stark’s on it. Feel free to weigh in on which one you think would be cooler.
And yes there will be cake from the same place that made it last year for the anniversary. It was darn good cake.
August 9th at noon with be Gameday for Magic the Gathering. Who will win the game mat?
After reading about the former Green Power Ranger coming to Wizard World Des Moines next year my hopes for a high profile, huge, exciting comic con, coming to Des Moines took a hit. Reality is settling in. Seriously the former Green Power Ranger? So far the non comic pros announced are bigger than the comic pros that have been announced. I like Shatner and all. After all Kirk was the best dang Captain of any Enterprise. It just is my hope that when Wizard World has its first show in Des Moines at least there is one big comic pro announced. If I go to the Des Moines Wizard World and pay $80 to get Shatner’s autograph and that is the highlight of my time there I will be dissappointed. Truthfully I have already seen Shatner years ago in Des Moines. Yes, over a decade ago.
There is plenty of time till next July when Wizard World arrives though so there is still hope. And who knows maybe Rodman Comics will be there. It has been years since we have had a table at a comic con. It just needs to be worth the store’s time.
Marvel has announced their plans for new Star Wars comics. I am sure the last thing Marvel wants to hear is “When Dark Horse published Star Wars it was better.” So it should be interesting.
Heroclix War of Light month 3 is on like Donkey Kong Saturday August 9th. And of course August 16th is the new date for the Con In Your Store event. As of typing this I am told Alliance has still not received the material for the Con In Your Store event. I am not suprised. August 23rd is a draft for the new Marvel Comics based Guardians of the Galaxy set. If it doesn’t get delayed. Apparently Wizkids at this point is not sure if the new Guardians set will be delayed by only a few days or not. Though my Diamond Comics invoice shows they are arriving next week. Big month for Heroclix.
Finally the market place on our website is working and live. It was cursed with people making it worse than it was before they started working on it. Feel free to check it out to sample some of the products we carry. I will be trying to update it when time permits. Meaning it will slowly grow. If you need something shipped to you shipping is free.
Been working on the comic order for October. Wow, Marvel has really went over board with the variants. They are spoofing DC’s various 75th Anniversary covers with Deadpool 75th Anniversary variants for various titles of theirs. Even though Deadpool has not been around half that long. The covers might even be funny. Heck, if I know though since Marvel didn’t provide any images of those covers.
Here are some examples of what Marvel is doing.
For the new Deathlok series for every 50 copies I order I may get one Crain variant cover.
Exceed 150% of orders for Original Sins #1 with orders for Deathlok #1 reg cover, and the Scotty Young variant order all you want.
You may order 1 Hasbro variant for every 15 regular covers you purchase. What does the Hasbro cover look like? No idea since there is no image provided.
You may order 1 Design variant for every 25 regular you purchase. Again no image is provided. Is “Design” the name of an artist or Marvel just thought up “Design variant” and thought it sounded cool?
Exceed 150% of orders for Original Sins #1 with orders for Deathlok #1 regular cover, and order this blank variant all you want.
I will be totally honest and admit I do not see 50 copies of Deathlok selling. Let alone over 150 percent of what Original Sin 1 sold. Original Sin was Marvel’s summer event. Eyeballs were given away promoting it. Deathlok has a small role in the T.V. series Agents of Shield. It isn’t going to sell better than Original Sin 1. So ordering more would be foolish.
The Scotty Young variants are popular. Usually it is much easier to order them. But this time Marvel is making them too expensive to get. The Scotty Young variants I sell for cover price. If I suddenly charge more it would be off putting to people who didn’t know of the changes to order them. If I was in the customer’s shoes I would think the owner was suddenly over charging and would be turned off to shopping there.
Guardians 3000 will be launching in October. Here are the order breakdowns for that title’s variants.
You may order 1 Alex Ross variant for every 100 regular you purchase.
Exceed 150% of orders for Guardians of Galaxy #15 with orders for Guardians 3000 #1 reg cvr, and this Scotty Young variant to order all you want. No image of the cover included.
You may order 1 Sandoval variant for every 25 regular you purchase. Who the heck is Sandoval? Again no image provided.
You may order 1 Deadpool 75th variant for every 25 regular you purchase. Again no image provided.
25 copies is manageable. I am a big fan of Alex Ross but 100 copies just so I can order 1 variant of his? Guardians 3000 is just to much of a long shot. And again the more than double what your orders were of Guardians of the Galaxy 15 so you may order Scotty Young variants just makes me roll my eyes.
These are just two examples of what Marvel is doing for October. Here is part of what Marvel is doing for the new Thor.
Thor 1 has a one in 300 sketch cover due out in October.
Exceed 150% of orders for Original Sins 5 with orders for Thor #1 reg cvr, and this Scotty Young variant to order all you want. No image of the cover included.
Thor also has six more variant covers coming out for the first issue.
But hey if I order 300 copies of Thor I qualify for all the other variants. Groan.
AVENGERS AND X-MEN AXIS #1 OF 9 DEADPOOL PARTY VARIANT
Exceed 200% of orders for Original Sin #2 with orders for Avengers & X-Men Axis #1 reg cvr, and order this variant all you want. Must opt in to party.
I can safely say I will not be ordering any of the Deadpool Party variants tied into AXIS. Basically order over triple what I ordered for Original Sin 2? Heck, no. Original Sin isn’t even finished yet and it has really cooled off sales wise. Less than favorable liked Infinity and now Original Sin has really cooled down readers excitment for Marvel company wide crossovers. No one has said anything favorably about yet the next Marvel crossover AXIS. We really don’t know what it is about yet. Other than another “Everything changes!”, yet again.
Marvel you make all these comics non returnable. Provide no images of the majority of variants you have coming out in October. It’s like you hope the retailers are drunk while ordering and bankrupt themselves over ordering. Who cares as long as Marvel makes a buck? Is that the idea?
There is an Original Sin Annual coming out in October? Why?
DC has lots of Monster variants for the month which fits since they will release in October just in time for Halloween. The difference is the Monster variants I can order what ever amount I want and there are no hoops to jump through. It doesn’t mean DC has some different variants where so many have to be order to qualify for. They just are going that route far less. And that is why Marvel beats them sales wise.
Marvel worries me with their constant re launches and flooding of the market with variants. To me it feels like a flimsy way of holding sales. It is the 90s all over again is what I am saying.
Comic that came out last week that you should have read is Justice League 32. Sounds like some big problems for the world’s greatest superheroes.
This week sees the return of Superior Spiderman’s title. Issue 32 is on the stands.
We went and seen the Guardians of the Galaxy movie. I like it. Two thumbs up.
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Much more important always feel free to stop in and buy something! We are here for your collecting needs.
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