I am sorry, but this has moved me to comment. I lived in Toronto for 4 years, and I've moved around a lot in my life. I've lived for a spell in Chicago, in Pittsburgh, and currently live in London England. Where ever I travel I always have a look around the game shops.
And you know what... Toronto has the BEST games shops and the BEST tabletop gaming scene I have ever come across anywhere.
I've moved around quite a bit, too, if that helps any. I've lived in many places where it was hard to get to a shop, and many places where it was easy. There used to be a great store in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, back in the 70s-80s, and I had good places to go in Riverside, CA and Los Angeles.
The thing about Toronto is that there are a lot of good shops, and each have it's specialty.
Sure.....but I'm not looking for materials for Pathfinder or 4e. Hairy Ts
has loads of great stuff, and has certainly supported the OSR (I have bought a number of OSRIC modules there, including the excellent Pod Caverns of the Sinister Shroom
!), and they carried the core DCC rules. I bought the first two DCC modules there as well. And then.....nothing. It doesn't seem to matter that I have gone in and talked to the owner and staff. Not sure why. In the past, HT
was always a good go-to place for Goodman Games
I was recently able to track down the travel edition of Settlers of Catan at 401 Games
, too. That was cool. Both of these stores are near work for me, and I can go buy stuff at lunch time. I also bought my giant d20 there recently, and have bought some other cool stuff, such as the Mines of Moria
boxed set and Barakus
As I said, I want to like Dueling Grounds
more than I do. Part of it has to do with trying, unsuccessfully, to order DCC materials through the store. Now, Wayne indicated that the fault was the distributor, and I know that both DG
use Lion Rampant
as their games distributor. So, maybe the fault does lie there. Certainly the quest for the more unusual DCC dice hit a snag because LR
doesn't carry them. And, as I indicated earlier, making my interests part of their business would motivate the good folks at DG
to do more.
And, again, I have said that I understand that times are bad. No store wants to get caught with inventory that it cannot move. But, frankly, I hate going to a games store and not buying anything. Right now, what I am looking to buy is DCC. There was some good vintage stuff at DG
last I was there (1e and 2e), but that isn't what I am looking for. And as cool as colourful staff, card games, and board games may be, none of those things help me pick up a print copy of The 13th Skull
I am sorry that London doesn't have what you are looking for -- that is a real concern! -- but saying that London is great for pubs doesn't make the stuff you are looking for appear. It isn't relevant. Likewise, noting that Toronto is great for game stores -- so long as you are not looking for DCC -- may be true, but it isn't really helpful. OTOH, if GG is distributed through Diamond Comics Distributors, then I know that Diamond will distribute in a proper manner, and I have to do nothing more than place an order at a friendly comic book store. And Toronto is also good for those.
I'd be happy to have any store in the GTA pop up in the thread -- comics, games, or other -- willing to order these materials for me, so long as they follow through. So far, that's hard to find. My pre-paid, pre-ordered advanced copy of the DCC rulebook didn't get to me until after street date
when I ordered it at DG
. And, as I said, I went so far as to call the distributor, so I am pretty fairly certain that I could have gotten it earlier....It was apparently there, waiting for me, as soon as Wayne okayed it being shipped to the store.
(When I co-owned Golden City Comics, we used LR as a games distributor, and I have a better-than-average understanding of how it works. The store doesn't pay until the item ships from the distributor. An item can be waiting at the distributor until the store okays it to ship. My experience with LR suggests that LR gets the merchandise in a timely fashion, and that any delay that occurs is probably on the part of the store. My phone conversations related to my own order seem to indicate that this was true in the case of my book as well.....and I was told by the store that it had not arrived at the distributor while the distributor was telling me it was there, just waiting for an okay to ship. You do the math.)
Diamond, on the other hand, ships when the item is available; the store cannot defer shipment until a more favourable economic period. So, items shipped by Diamond arrive when they are supposed to. This is probably largely due to two factors: (1) Diamond deals mostly with periodicals, and (2) Diamond is large enough that they can dictate terms in this fashion.
My goal is to get the DCC materials in hard copy. Stores that will not meet order commitments -- no matter how excellent they are otherwise -- don't help with that. IME. YMMV.