Warhammer Stormbringer – It was a Trial!

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Warhammer Stormbringer - Trial Reveal

Sorry! I know, you probably come to this site to get the latest info about all things Warhammer and Partworks, we’ve been rather quiet on Stormbringer despite it seemingly having just gone full release as expected in August after its 2-week trial earlier this year. Well, if you aren’t in our Facebook Group or Discord Server you may be surprised to now find that the latest release of Warhammer Stormbringer was a re-trial and if you already subscribed earlier this year, you do need to resubscribe. Why didn’t I say anything before? I was asked not to…

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Warhammer Stormbringer – Resubscribe Now

I need to put this font and centre if you subscribed to Warhammer Stormbringer via Hachette back in Jan -March of 2022. Unlike previous Trail Subscriptions which then carry over to the later full release. you will need to subscribe again during this new Aug-Sept 2022 trial if you want to get the magazine when it fully launches. With the current ETA is expected to be around Jan-March 2023 based on the standard bi-yearly partworks launch schedule – affected slightly by Covid the past couple of years.

So the point is, if you want this magazine, resubscribe, and make sure you tell your friends to re-subscribe. This only counts for those who initially subscribed during the first trial in early 2022, not late 2022.

Only the original trial subscribers need to resubscribe.

Now when it comes to subscribing early. This has previously awarded us with free gifts when the subscription does go live. With Conquest and Mortal Realms, it was a free issue. With Imperium it was an amazing mug! Go watch my terrible review now.

Warhammer Stormbringer – Hachette Hatred

yep, it would be lax of me not to cover this, so many people have noticed negative opinions toward Hachette for their approach to this. And whilst I don’t want to be a full-on Hachette apologist. If you read below in regard to the reasons – I hope you’ll at least understand why I feel this approach was taken.

Hachette are a business at the end of the day. Their aim is to grow with various products and partnerships. And in a world of digital media – printed magazines are already a legacy offering. Let’s be fair, If this was just a magazine with no models, sold at 1/4th the price. Would you even consider buying it? I imagine less than 5% of you would.

Progress has already claimed the soul of Eaglemoss earlier this year. So with that in mind. Why the silence, and why am I now part of it?

Warhammer Stormbringer Trial – Why Hachette’s Silence?

Many of you may know this but if you don’t let me fill you in on the business approach of Hachette Partworks, and whilst yes I have a contact there – all of this is inferred from my experience with the partworks magazine and none of it has been directly said or confirmed by Hachette.

So, Hachette works as a partworks company by first trialling their subscriptions – they pick a limited part of the country and release only a small series of the magazines giving the full impression that they are a real and legitimate live subscription that is available now. They will even instruct their call centre to say as much – though a few of them may or may not have inferred to some callers over the years that “yeah, it’s a trial” (this is based on reports from people on our FaceBook group).

Why the misdirect? well, it’s a trial, they need this to appear as real as possible. If passionate people knew this was a trial, they would understand that the publisher needs subscribers’ numbers to hit a certain threshold before they can commit to going live.

Warhammer Stormbringer Magazine - Full Collection

Imagine someone is a huge fan of Smurfs (the cartoon characters, not Ultramarines), and the partworks company release a trial. One committed (r at least “should be committed”) person could subscribe themself with 1000 made-up email addresses and made-up names just to artificially inflate subscribers’ numbers to ensure the magazine goes live and they get their collection.

The publisher would infer from this limited-local trial that this collection is gonna be huge and order 500,000 copies of each issue to circulate in the UK when it comes to the launch. Only to find that most people aren’t this crazy and even that one potentially insane person only bought 2 issues (one to open and one to keep pristine).

And we all get a bankrupt partworks company!

Now, this approach IMHO is a bit archaic, especially in the generation of the internet where a local trial gets covered by an online blog and even more so with a community as big as Warhammer. A local trial suddenly becomes a national demand.

But if this trial approach is so outdated in the modern era, why don’t Hachette change their prediction approach to be inclusive of online encouragement/interference.

Well, I think they tried.

Warhammer Stormbringer Trial – Why FauxHammer’s Silence?

So, I promised to “never be part of the establishment”, but when I said that. I had no idea just how influential FauxHammer.com could possibly be. Rob and I are just 2 guys who love painting (and playing in his case) Warhammer stuff and other miniatures. So when We got exclusive pre-release info of Imperium prior to its trial, and we released several articles in-line with that Trail announcement.

We were advised(and shocked to hear) that they had more Imperium trial subscriptions via “our link” than they had received for any partworks prior!

That’s amazing for us and shows us the power we had within the community. and whilst I’ve never had the following confirmed by them. Can we all imagine for a moment how this skewed their prediction numbers?

so when I heard about Stormbringer and asked for info, I got a polite “we aren’t intending to publish details on this right now”. I panicked, I was worried they did not want to work with us anymore. Had we somehow upset our beloved overlords at GWHQ?

Regardless of this, I pushed on and was able t pull the info together for imperium from what Hachette had released both online and in the 2 Stormbringer trial mags I managed to get my hands on thanks to a connect made by my good friend Garfy from TaleofPainters.

As the release was looming (we always expected August 2022) I reached out to Hachette again to ask for more info and I was advised it was a trial. but kindly asked not to mention it. And whilst again I was not directly advised “why” I could infer enough from the conversation that it’s most likely to avoid skewing the numbers.

So, as I said to people in our Facebook Group and Discord Server as an attempt to do damage control before it was realised. I’m sorry. I am here for you the community, but to be a grown-up for once in my life, I am also in a position where I can negatively impact Hachette. and if I do that – the worst case scenario is that none of us gets this subscription or any more after it.

though thanks to the national distro database, this retrial was revealed via a spreadsheet before it started too. Sorry Hachette, that’s the internet for you.

Thankfully now we are in the full trial – Hachette has once again agreed to work with us going forward when the magazine releases in full. and I’ve also reached out to see if we can cover D&D Adventurer (aka D&D Dice Collector) too, which is also now in trial.

Warhammer Stormbringer Trial – Final Thoughts

So yeah, it’s a 2nd trial and if you subscribed to the first trial at the beginning of the year, you must resubscribe with the chance of getting a free gift for your patience. Aside from my reasons above this retrial makes sense on a number of levels.

And yeah Hachette has 2 points in the negative column right now. 1 for the silence method of the trial in the first place and 2 for the silence on the retrial. but let’s have a look at the pro’s column shall we?

  1. They improved their customer service greatly between Conquest and Mortal Realms after scathing feedback of how poor it was
  2. They greatly improved the contents of the premium sets in Mortal Realms when compared to Conquest (though I’ll deduct half a point for Stormbringers contents versus Imperiums)
  3. They have essentially delayed the Stormbringer full release so more people can now dual-run with Imperium if they wish for a shorter period
  4. They actually revealed the full contents of the Premium collection rather than the secretive stance they took during the first trial (even though it was obvious to us all what the rest of the stuff was).
  5. 5 they give us Warhammer models at 40%-70% off RRP! – this is worth at least 5 points because let’s be honest, it’s why most of us buy the mag.

So that’s 8.5 positive points to 2 negative.

Oh, wait, 3 negatives! Imperium is halfway done with no sign of Silver Templars!

Sh yeah, a bit of an archaic approach to testing and yes this will annoy new people. but hopefully, those people find a quick answer and/or reassurance in either our posts or Facebook Group and Discord Server and accept it as the nature of the beast like the rest of us have.

Now go subscribe whilst I find a space for my own new hoards of plastic!

Keep an eye on our main Stormbringer post for the latest coverage

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  • Self-appointed Editor in chief of FauxHammer.com - But I need to thank the team for existing and therefore enabling me to give myself role - without them, I'm just a nerd with a computer and a plastic addiction.

About FauxHammer 257 Articles
Self-appointed Editor in chief of FauxHammer.com - But I need to thank the team for existing and therefore enabling me to give myself role - without them, I'm just a nerd with a computer and a plastic addiction.

3 Comments

  1. Dont suppose you could ask your contacts why they thought overlapping the subscriptions was a good idea? I appreciate its “shorter” but limited budgets and all that.

    • I can ask but I won’t be given an answer. It will be to do with release timings I expect, partworks magazine go out twice a year march and august usually. They will need to fit this in before GW plans to release the next AOS game without much crossover with that.

  2. Thanks for the update, I’ve re-subscribed as I really don’t want to miss out on all the goodies. A later release date helps me save up for those ‘extra’ copies of certain issues I’ll no-doubt be getting, lol

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