Scent of a Gamer

From the computer to the tabletop, this is all about games. Updated each week-end.

Supporting games stores

note; I had originally scheduled this for the week-end, but things are moving so quickly I decided to post it now; for many of you it may already be too late to be of use.

It’s no secret that we’re in uncertain times right now. I hope all those reading this, wherever you may be, are doing okay.

In dark times the first priority is to look after ourselves and those around us.

This pandemic will pass, and I have been wondering how many game stores will be around to greet us when it does.

Photo by Chris Panas on

It’s no secret that retail has been hit hard – except supermarkets of course (calm down, people!). Game stores are now exception to this. I have heard storied of anything from 30% to 80% drops in sales over the past few weeks.

Not every store is going to be able to weather this storm.

Photo by Octoptimist on

What we can do

I can’t tell you what do; I don’t know your individual situation. I can tell you what I’m doing.

Every day I go into work (which is not every day), I stop by one of the game stores i like to patronise, and buy… something.

Not necessarily something big, just something simple like a pack of Magic cards, or a single miniature. Less than I might spend on lunch, basically. I’m not kidding myself that this alone will keep a store open, but I know this – it doesn’t hurt.

As individuals, we might not have the ability to single-handedly keep stores open over this time, but every little purchase helps, no matter how trivial it may seem. This doesn’t just apply to brick and mortar – your favourite webstore or independent company will be struggling too. If you are able to, see what you can do to support them.

So that’s what I recommend – if you can, buy something. Hopefully we will still have local games stores around when COVID-19 is just a memory.

Photo by Artem Beliaikin on

March 26 update: ICv2 have a series from games and comic stores about the COVID-19 impact on them, including one from my LGS.

12 comments on “Supporting games stores

  1. theimperfectmodeller
    March 25, 2020

    A worthy shout out. On a personal level I am making regular purchases to my favorite suppliers many of whom are still currently operating. Away from modelling we are buying from small local shops for groceries too. They are well stocked and will deliver. They are doing far more than the larger retailers and right now my family and I would be lost without them.

    • davekay
      March 25, 2020

      it’s a good point that local stores other than local games stores can also use the additional support right now

  2. Bookstooge
    March 25, 2020

    It has been astounding just how fast our world has been affected by coronavirus. So far our State hasn’t closed non-essential businesses, but it is happening all around us so I suspect it won’t be far off…

    • davekay
      March 25, 2020

      Yes, Over here we have gone from no gatherings over 500 people to many businesses being told to close up in just a couple of weeks. I have no idea where we will be in a couple more weeks’time.

  3. Ann
    March 26, 2020

    I try to support my local game store as much as I can during normal times. Amazon and other online retailers aren’t providing a space for us to play our games after all, nor are they serving as a focal point for our hobbies. I hope that our local game store weathers this. I don’t really have any major purchases I was planning on making, but I just thought of a painting challenge idea as I type this: Buy a model or box of models from FLGS in March or April and finish painting them by the end of May!

    • davekay
      March 26, 2020

      I like that idea Ann! I have been tentatively calling the models I have bought so far my ‘covid collection’!

      • Ann
        March 28, 2020

        “Covid Collection!” 🙂

  4. Azazel
    March 26, 2020

    I just placed what willl be my final GW order for what looks like awhile with my UK source, and I ordered from my local mail order place a couple of weeks ago (I usually get stuff from them every couple of months). At this point there’s nothing I want or need and I don’t have a FLGS, so any “frivolous” purchases will be things like takeaway food from the small local places to support them while they’re still open.
    Our usual (awesome) butcher shut down about a month ago (unrelated to COVID-19) so we found a small local place in a bank of shops that we’ve been frequenting instead of getting supermarket meat. – so yeah, as IMP says – games store or not it’s a good idea to do what you can to support small local business if you can.

  5. imperialrebelork
    March 26, 2020

    Good on you mate. My local GW and another gaming shop nearby have already shut their doors. ☹️

    • davekay
      March 26, 2020

      Yes one of the prompts for me to put this up earlier than intended was the news of GWs global shutdown.

  6. Pingback: Secret Weapon HD bases Kickstarter | Scent of a Gamer

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This entry was posted on March 25, 2020 by in Industry and tagged , , .
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