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ANKAMA PRODUCTS AND CMON LIMITED END DISTRIBUTION DEAL

By [Dewit] - ANKAMA - May 23, 2017, 18:15:00
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Ankama Products and CMON Limited announced their USA distribution partnership has come to an end.

Ankama Products and CMON Limited announced their USA distribution partnership has come to an end. The final product to be released under the current deal is Gang Rush: Breakout on June 23, 2017.

Ankama and CMON originally entered into their partnership to deliver on the awaited release of Krosmaster: Quest and have gone on to distribute Krosmaster Arena 2.0, 75 Gnom’ Street, Kromaster Collection: Cemetery Park, and more. CMON will continue to sell their remaining stock of Ankama Products along with providing customer support for those titles while supplies last.

Until further notice, all new English releases, starting with the Wild Realms Krosmaster collection, will be available on our online shop: www.ankama-shop.com.

For more information, please contact contact-products@ankama.com.

 

Regarding organized play

 

It is not our intention to remove the USA from the Organized Play circuit. We wish to see the community playing in tournaments, including the Qualifying Tournaments (QT) for the next World Championship. As such, the 10 QT reserved for the US are still a possibility.

If you desire to organize a QT in the USA for this season, please contact us by e-mail at contact-products@ankama.com . You have until Monday, June 12th at 9:00 PM CEST to send us your project.

Thanks in advance.

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First Ankama intervention

As for the Ankama Shop page, an English version is in the works, and we hope to deploy it as soon as we can. Same for the link to the website: thanks for pointing the error, we'll see to fix it. 

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Score : 55

Here's a tip, if you are going to direct people to English releases on your Ankama shop, you may want to actually make it so that we can read it in English. Your shop has not had an English translation option for quite some time. Just FYI. As a side note, real shame things have gone this route.

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Score : 6280

Goes to site where English products can be sold using link provided. Can't switch to English...
Seriously guys? You must REALLY hate money.

PS. Even if you type in http://www.ankama-shop.com/en/ it switches back to http://www.ankama-shop.com/fr/.

Make the announcement sure, but why would you provide a link to a site if it's not even working?

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Score : 1

No languages, other than french, function on the Ankama shop.

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Score : 274

Guys? Are you reading the post? It says "after gang rush"....

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WarpYarik|2017-05-24 05:50:40
Guys? Are you reading the post? It says "after gang rush"....
 

The word "after" doesn't appear at all up there. But it does say "Until further notice, all new English releases, starting with the Wild Realms Krosmaster collection, will be available on our online shop." And people are noting that the English site for the English releases doesn't exist.
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Score : 274

well wild realms have not been released yet?

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...Maybe the future English prodcuts are not ready yet, but geez, put something up yeah? How about a preorder page? Anything. But to provide a link to a site that doesn't even exist, speaks more and more to Ankama's interest in supporting it's long time english speaking fans/player base. They could stand to do better than this. And we deserve better than this for supporting them. Period.

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Score : 167

Guys, I understand where you're coming from and why you may be upset, both by the current announcment and the "baggage" from past inconveniences, and while I'll grant you that SOME complaints are legitimate, don't you think you might be a bit overdramatic with the language thing ?
They may not have had the time to implement an english interface + translation of all the references in the shop since the time the decision with CMON was taken. Such things don't implement themselves overnight with a snap of a finger.

Also, is it so hard to navigate an online shop that has just the same structure as any other online shop in the world, despite not being in english ? From the main page, you get a nice "krosmaster" sub-menu button (pro tip : the french word for "krosmaster" is "krosmaster"). From that sub-menu, you get pictures of all the articles, and pictures don't need translations. Then on the detailed page of each article, there's a big red button with a shopping cart pictogram ... may that be the "purchase" button ? And in the top right corner, there's a clickable word with a number that increases each time you purchase an article, may that be the "check cart" menu ?

Here, I've just presented you how the rest of the non english speaking world deals with online commerce where a majority of the shops are in english exclusively and manages perfectly fine, I'm sure you can do it too. And if that's not enough, you can always use https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=fr&sl=fr&tl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ankama-shop.com%2Ffr%2F5-krosmaster to guide you through the menus, description, checkout fields.
I also remember that many people didn't seem to have trouble with the shop's interface when it came to ordering season 4 displays last month ....

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firfidut|2017-05-24 19:23:28
Words....

 


Yes, we can and I personally have navigated their website in French to get items. But only because I knew those items included both English and French cards. If I were to purchase the OVA pack via their French site all the profile cards would be in French, not in English. Can we use the French site? Yes. Do we want to? That depends on if you are ok with French Cards.

More to the point. Like Syntek pointed out. The site has not had a working English page for a long time. Well over a year in fact, I tried it when they first annoucned the new site and it has never worked even since then. Despite there being an English option right at the top of the page. So no I do not expect an overnight snap, but I do expect a better turnover than a year+.

Overdramatic? No not really imo. At this point Ankama is a runaway delivery truck with no one at the wheel and us hoping they hit a pothole that will knock some items off the truck.
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  • Yes, we can and I personally have navigated their website in French to get items. But only because I knew those items included both English and French cards. If I were to purchase the OVA pack via their French site all the profile cards would be in French, not in English. Can we use the French site? Yes. Do we want to? That depends on if you are ok with French Cards.

If your complaint is about labelling, the items that currently have english cards are clearly marked as such in their respective pages (eg : Duel pack #1 or  brotherhood of tofu set). If your complaint is about english versions aviability about certain items, I won't say such expectations are wrong, but I'll say complaining about it is a bit premature, it's only been a couple days

  • More to the point. Like Syntek pointed out. The site has not had a working English page for a long time. Well over a year in fact, I tried it when they first annoucned the new site and it has never worked even since then. Despite there being an English option right at the top of the page. So no I do not expect an overnight snap, but I do expect a better turnover than a year+.

True, but realistically, it was a low priority if you think about it. Keep in mind what Ankama's structure is. They may have 400+ employees, but in reality, they work more like an aggregate of very small companies (an animation studio, a videogame company, a book publisher, a boardgame manufacturer and a merchandizing department). even though these departments can pool some of their assets, they're still not gonna have the same resources as one big company of the same size that focuses on one activity and is hence big enough to have international ramifications. The videogame and animation departments can spread worldwide, but don't really contribute to physical shop sales. The books are mostly focused on the french market because unlike videogames and animation, each copy you print ans stock costs money over the initial investment for translation, and the publishing department alone isn't big enough to go international yet. As for the boardgames, they have local distributors for foreign countries.
Overall, with the current range and size of their activities, their online shop for physical goods is mostly focused around the french market. A multilanguage shop interface wouldn't be a bad thing, but it wouldn't bring enough extra sales for it to be top priority yet, they'd have to grow in size substantially to reach that threshold.
Today's need for a working english interface rose from an anomaly in the business model, which is the sudden removal of a distributor for the US market, so while it eventually needs to be adressed, a bit of leeway and understanding should be given to them while they try to fix that unplanned situation.

  • Overdramatic? No not really imo. At this point Ankama is a runaway delivery truck with no one at the wheel and us hoping they hit a pothole that will knock some items off the truck.

Let it be clear that I'm in no way fanboying or denying that Ankama has problems in the managment of their activities, quite the opposite in fact. There are very legitimate complaints you guys can have about how things were handled for the distribution of Krosmaster in the US (though to be completely fair, some of it was also on JaG and CMON's part).
But reading this thread, I felt most of the complaints on the emergency solutions put in place by Ankama were a tad bit premature and undeserved, and mostly the consequence of a general level of outrage from previous history. In such a heated environment, negative hype on forums quickly tend to escalate out of proportions and i don't think this is in anyone's interest, hence my attempt to relativise and calm things down.
Now, should thing stagnate and the situation be exactly the same in a month, then yeah, I'll be the first to criticize their actions, meanwhile let's cool our heads and keep real about what is reasonably feasible in such short notice.
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firfidut|2017-05-24 23:18:02
 
Now, should thing stagnate and the situation be exactly the same in a month, then yeah, I'll be the first to criticize their actions

Gonna hold ya to that. A months time nothing will have changed. If Ankama has taught me anything it's that they woefully unreliable.
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Score : 94

I am truly sorry about how things are turning out for the US side. Regardless of market size (which I personally think you are missing out on) everything I have read and seen about how this situation is playing out obliges me to tell you the following:

Ankama, you need to start gettting your act together. We are tired of your amateurish, haphazard methods of dealing, managing, and treating both the retail and OP sections of this game. Right now your only resources are your long time players, the ones who invest time and money and passion to promote and get people to know your products. At this point I (and most likely the entire US community, or at least the ones left) don't care what problems you have: they are YOUR problems... FIX THEM or have the courage to abandon the game you clearly are not suited to manage.

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As for the Ankama Shop page, an English version is in the works, and we hope to deploy it as soon as we can. Same for the link to the website: thanks for pointing the error, we'll see to fix it. 

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Score : 94

What about the OP situation? Who will run our QTs? and our National Championship? Is it Ankama's intention to try and get this up and running asap or are you going to be leaving us high and dry for this season? The community requires an answer, Dewit.

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As CMON was reponsible for organized play, people willing to help organize the tournament scene will be needed from now on. We're open to any suggestions on the topic.
If you're interested, or know someone who is, please send an e-mail at the adress in the original post. We'll also make an official call next week. 

Score : 92

would be nice with a new kickstarter. With lots of resin and stuff smile

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Score : 242

Dewit, when you fix create new post function...? I need it..

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Score : 4392

Let anyone buy OP kits.   I play in two game groups, one at a store where we rarely play krosmaster.   One at my house where we sometimes play Krosmaster.   I'm a collector and currently there is no means for someone like me to get resin OP kit content.   This is frustrating to me.   My only option is to get scalped on e-bay.   I've already owned Dark Crow for what? about a year now....and I have been stuck using cardboard for the last year.    Sell the MOBs at the same time the figures who summon them come out.    The idea of giving promo material to people who already play the game is a double edged sword.  It will piss off some of your most loyal customers (the collectors and players who want all the pieces), you're intentionally making it hard on us.    These types of promos don't attract new players, they are targeted at existing players.    Promos should target NEW players to get them into the game.


 

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I second this. Ankama, let me buy your products. Wouldn't you rather everyone PAY for the resin terrain and tokens than a few people try to win a scarce few of them?

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I'll tell you what got me into the game.  I saw it and it was visually compelling....that immediately attracted me to the game.    But I didn't buy it.   Then at a convention I won a convention prize from a pile of promo material for different games.   The piece of promo material I choose was the Captain Ankama/Merkator Dual pack.   Once I had the figures in my hand, and they were every bit as charming as the images I'd seen of the game on-line and on the box.   I then bought the game.   Found the mechanics to my liking and I was hooked.    The "promo" material I got was not something unique.   It was just a component anyone could have boughten at the time.  But it was "New and Unique" to me.   Ankama did not have to piss off any collectors with hard to get promo items.   They just needed to get  sample of an existing figure in my hands to see how amazingly cool it was.   Promotional stuff should not piss off existing customers....and hard to get unique promo stuff I have to get scalped on e-bay for is not making me...an existing loyal customer happy.   I buy everything you make for this game.    Sell me the MOBs....and better yet sell me the mobs when the figures that summon them come out!!!    People in stores will see me and others playing the game with 3-d figures, MOBs, and Terrain and it will make the game that much more compelling.   Cardboard mobs are .....blah.....every game in the world has cardboard chits for pieces.   3-D stuff in this game is the biggest selling point.....make it available.

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Score : 167

Two things about selling 3D tokens and terrains

First, you need something to stimulate attendance at organized play. If you sell everything outright, people WILL buy everything outright, and organized play will be for all intent and purpose, dead. Those few people who are in solely for the competitive aspect are too small of a demographic to keep it alive on their own. So what would you replace the 3D tokens with ?

  • things aviable for sales on the shelves ? people most likely already have them within a week of release.
  • alternative skins/cards ? then you've just moved the problem without solving it, as they're just as unnecessary as 3D tokens for the playability of the game, and collectors will want them just as much, leading to the same people who can't easily attend tournaments complaining about accessibility of these items.
  • merchandise not directly game-related like stickers, mugs, posters, etc ... ? Aside from the most hardcore collectors, people most likely won't care and you're stuck with little to no attendance for organized play again.

Second, what you're asking is technically already in place. The standard model for promotional merchandise is that you can get them from attending organised play at first, then after some time (used to be a year / a season of krosmaster) when a new kit is released, the old kit becomes aviable in window-boxes off the shelves. Same thing for promotional material outside of organized play, like the Flunch series, promos are supposed to be a timed exclusivity that later sees wider public release.
"So what went wrong ?" you will ask. The model is fine, but sometimes, real life sh*t happens, such as unreliability in distributing stuff over a specific area (JAG / CMON) or a production factory going bankrupt.
Everything prior to season 4 and the V2.0 base set was manufactured at a factory that has since gone bust and closed. As is very common in this branch of activities, production tools (in this case plastic injection molds) belong to the factory, not the clients ordering the merchandise. Also, injection molds are very, VERY expensive to make, and rebuilding the old ones from scratch wouldn't be economically viable given the low return on interest.
So everything from season 1, 2, 3 including 3D tokens and terrains can no longer be (economically) produced and that's why tokens and terrains from the season 3 tournament kit, as well as some promos such as the third Flunch series haven't been released in window box on the shelves, as they should have. It's not a change of policy or a deliberate decision, it's just the long term consequences of the old factory going bust, and remaining stocks not being big enough for a shop release. BTW, that's also why the long awaited Duel Pack #3 is also MIA : it was made in the old factory.
Now I personally can't guarantee that the initial model I described is still up to date with current plans, but I see no reason why it wouldn't. All the exceptions to the model can be explained by the factory thing, and the season 4 set of 3D tokens and terrain is only 6 months old and still currently in use in tournaments, so it's not time YET for it to go on the shelves.

Time will tell.
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Score : 4392

Firfudit - Black Crow came out a year ago...The OP Kit with the Crowbaks' is coming out now-ish (still not in the US but in Europe currently....and as you say....and I suspect is true....a year from now they will be available in some sort of blister pack to buy.     So you think this was a "Good plan"?     Unless I want to get scalped a YEAR LATER on e-bay, then I wait TWO YEARS for the MOB's for the Krosmaster who can summon them that I bought TWO YEARS ago.     This seems like a "Good plan" to you?     Something that won't at all piss of players?   (and same for the Ghouls and Tentacles)

OP Kit's arent' what makes or breaks Organized play.     If a game is good, people will play Organized play.   I play in a game group on Friday nights at a local game store and we have around 30 regulars, of whom 20 will show up any given Friday.   We play whatever game "People want to play" people bring games and the store provides demo copies of games if we want to try them.    We play a variety of games but the one we play the most now by far is Terraforming Mars, any given Friday there will be anywhere from two to three tables of 3-5 players playing sometimes 2-3 games of Terraforming Mars each night.    Terraforming Mars has ZERO organized play support.  NONE.  There have been two promo cards released at conventions....but those aren't what gets people to play.  What gets people to play is it's a really really good game.    Krosmaster has some balance issues.  If those were gone, I could see the on-line version being played almost as much as League of Legends, and the live in-person version would get played more at game groups.

OP Kit's aren't what makes people play games.   Good games are what do that.  Krosmaster is by far the best looking game out there, and I like the mechanics and game play speed.   It's just some balance issues like all the uproar you're hearing over Julith that has plagued this game's success.

 

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