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General Forge Forums => Publishing => Topic started by: Ken on March 19, 2006, 03:23:18 AM

Title: Alliance Distributors
Post by: Ken on March 19, 2006, 03:23:18 AM

This is kind of follow up to my other post. I talked to my local comic book shop owner (here in Virginia) the other day to find out which gaming distributor(s) he used to get his merch. He said that he uses Alliance for most of his stuff and Diamond to fill the gaps.

So, I checked out the Alliance website to see how I would go about soliciting my line and found these requirements:
a) a sample of your product, b) product information sheet, and c) distributors terms. The first one sounds easy enough, and the second one sounds available from them, but the third one kind of threw me a bit. My terms are BUY MY BOOK/ GIVE ME MONEY, but I'm sure that is not exactly what they mean.

What are standard distribution terms on this level? Is this a potential wrecking ball for a small indie outfit like mine?

Any help or insight would be appreciated.



Title: Re: Alliance Distributors
Post by: daMoose_Neo on March 19, 2006, 05:35:30 AM
My personal reccomendation: talk to a fullfilment house to deal with distribution. Key20, Impressions, Ed of Indie Press Revolution may deal with distribution, I don't recall, and RPGNow has some distribution programs worked out with major distributors.

Personally, I went round and round with distributors trying to get my product listed to no avail. Finally, after about a year of being in the thick of it, I signed with Key20, BOOM, my games are listed. Figure Alliance and the larger companies don't want to deal with small press publishers one on one, which is why fullfillment houses work out better: They rep for twenty small press companies, handle all of the logistics, and Alliance writes one check as opposed to twenty.

Title: Re: Alliance Distributors
Post by: Ken on March 19, 2006, 07:45:05 PM

Thanks. I checked Key 20 out a little while ago. I agree, they are probably the way to go to get taken seriously by distributors. If you don't mind me asking, how did going through a fulfillment house eat into your profits. I'm assuming it was worth it. Any advice when approaching this avenue of business?

Thanks again,


Title: Re: Alliance Distributors
Post by: daMoose_Neo on March 20, 2006, 05:27:14 AM
Well, per unit, I went from making about $6.30 per deck of my Final Twilight card game down to 1.14. BUT, I moved around two hundred units in the first Alliane order alone, wheras I was moving maybe three boxes/36 units a month by myself. And publishing a CCG, I want to have the audiance out there, which means distro is something good for me, because it helps get the game out there and reinforces the work I do online promoting it by letting fans walk their pals down to the FLGS to pick up a copy.

Heres the thing: if your title does well enough on its own two legs, you may not need distribution. I needed it to reach the larger market and help get the fans I do have able to get their friends to play, with fewer hoops for them to jump through. And it works. That first order consisted of about 30 copies each of 6 items. The last order for the new set ran 80 copies each of two items. Shops are interested, audiances must be out there, and I'm aware of a couple odd pockets that I didn't in some where personally cultivate.
If you can pitch the game, get players, and do it online where you're maximizing your profits, go for it. Otherwise, if you need that physically close "I'll play you at lunch" community, you can go with distro to help that out.