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Yours truly, on Fine Games' busiest day ever.

Yours Truly on a busy day in 2005

Fine Games' Update Newsletter #52,    
25 March 2011

Our Update eNewsletter is designed to keep you informed of happenings at Fine Games in the way of special sales & deals, to keep you abreast of new strategy games recently published or pending publication, to inform you of helpful techniques to protect or enhance your games, and also to give you periodic insight into the not-so-wonderful world of the strategy board game distribution system.

We welcome your comments & critiques, and suggestions for future coverage.

Please Check Your Contact Info

Fine Games Turns 19 on April Fools

Its no joke — then again, maybe it is! — Fine Games celebrates its 19th birthday on the 1st of April. Nineteen years: the bulk of my career selling games. Who'd have thought? As many of our longtime customers have heard before, it has been a long, strange trip indeed.

As a way of celebrating, we offer yet another special catalog. This one highlights all of our many games & such which have the number "19" somewhere in the title or description. Eclectic, yes. Just like Fine Games itself.

Want a Special Deal for YOUR Birthday?

We'd like to celebrate your birthday, too. By offering you a special deal during the month of your birthday. Say, a discount on anything you order. Or maybe a special deal on a great new game. Sound good?

But to do so, we need your birth month & day (not the year). Let us know that, and you'll receive a special birthday email from us each year. Just email us with your birth month & day .

Fine Games Spring Liquidation Sale — thru Tax Day, 18 April

Now thru Tax Day here in the states (18 April 2011), we offer great prices on  about 400 items in our Spring Liquidation Sale (pdf, or in TEXT format), all are priced to move.  Prices are similar to and in some cases are lower than in this sale's bigger brother, our Annual Clearance Sale in the late fall. All you have to do is act fast as these are priced to move in the next month. And majority are new items without flaws aside from we've been looking at them (or too many of them) for too long.

We are also repeating two popular special offers, a menu of $10 Games and $5 Games. Each lists over 100 items available at a fixed price. Its a great opportunity to flush out your game collection with titles that may not deserve premium prices but still are decent games.

In each of these sale catalogs, we offer some truly great deals commonly of more than 50% off list price. Take a peek, won't you?

Our subscribers received early notice of these sale offers last week. If you don't currently subscribe, email us now to subscribe today to take advantages of the many services we offer to our subscribers (see below).

These offers expire promptly on Monday, 18 April. And they are selling at a respectable pace. So best to take advantage of these offers now.

Earthquakes Off the Pacific Coast

You've seen the destruction in Japan following the earthquake & tsunami off northern Japan. We urge you to take action to both show your support for those impacted, both emotionally & financially. Recovering from an event of this nature is something that calls for the world's support.

We here see the situation with very empathic eyes. Fine Games is inland from the Pacific Ocean a couple of miles near Coos Bay. We're 60 miles from a major fault line off the coast. There is a 37% chance of the Big One within the next 50 years. And we sit at 14ft elevation. Even if all our 10,000 games don't wash away, this area's infrastructure would be totaled and we'd be physically isolated. So, we have every sense that "There but for the grace of god go I."

We are therefore donating a portion of the proceeds from our liquidation sale (above) to relief efforts in Japan. But you can help: donate to the Red Cross directly which attends to the displaced, to the Arkbark which attends to displaced or orphaned animals, MercyCorp/Peace Winds which also attends to the displaced. You can also gain United Airlines miles awards in exchange for larger donotations to the Red Cross via the UA website. Or find an organization you trust via a web search.

The key is to DO SOMETHING. Now. Please.

Help Locating Other Gamers Near You

The bane of strategy gaming, and of wargaming in particular, has always been finding others to play with. Afterall, you're really stretched to learn and grow as a player thru stiff competition. The AH General used to have an Opponents Wanted; the many services on the internet go a long way to filling this need today. But Fine Games wants to help you, belatedly, if you need someone to play with.

We can help you in this way: we will post a summary listing of Players/Opponents Available on our web site that reflects the geographical locations of our customers. If you think we can help, send us an email. We'll forward your contact info to our other customers within your geographic areas.

What's a "geographic area?" Within the US, we are using the first 3 digits of your zip code. So, our zip code is 97459; the 3 digit zip code is 974 which covers southwestern Oregon. Oregon as a state contains 8 such areas, for example. For Canada, we also use the first 3 characters of the postal code. For all other countries, at this time we simply show the number of customers we have within each nation.

Note that in areas with only a single customer we do not list the area—since that would by you. You'll have to look for adjacent areas to find an opponent.

New Stuff: Zombie Games & More

Some of us, Yours Truly included, are avid fans of the many Zombie movies spawned by George Romero's black & white, 1968 classic, Night of the Living Dead. If you haven't seen them all (several times), we recommend that movie, the 2004 version of Dawn of the Dead as well as I am Legend. Oh, and the 28 Days Later & 28 Weeks Later movies, which are akin to the basic theme.

Over time, there have been many Zombie games produced that follow the theme. In fact, we count 63 games & accessories in print, of which we have 23 in stock (most of which are included in our sale, above). Most are tactical in scale, with the handful of human players fending off the horde of undead. But a few recent titles (such as Zombie State, Diplomacy of the Dead) have taken a global perspective of how the world would cope with things gone very wrong. So, after watching Zombies recently — a sort of Italian spagetti western zombie movie, we created a specialty catalog of Zombie games. Take a look. And watch the movies!

Also, Decision Games' folio game series, some of which are updates of original SPI quad-series games and some are new designs in the same spirit, have proved very popular. All make for an easy evening's entertainment, have a gentle learning curve, are also good games for beginners, and are great values in today's world of $100 games.

We anticipate a major shipment of Avalanche Press games, including all their recent titles as well as more Alea, Vae Victis & SimTac products by early April.

New & Pending Game Releases

As always, you can check on New Game Releases in the Last 2 Months, and also Pending Game Releases anticipated in the next 6 months, both in fast-loading text (TXT) format. These listings are continually updated with the latest info we have.

Subscribe to & Benefit From Fine Games Services

You're invited to make full use of the many services that Fine Games offers to you, most without additional charge. The gateway to all of our services is a free subscription to our emailed Update Newsletter. If you received this Newsletter directly from Fine Games, you're subscribed already. If you've come across this in any other way, subscribe NOW!

Subscriptions are free, we simply need your full HOME address & phone # contact info to sign you up. You can add a cell and/or business phone, too, to insure we can contact you quickly should you order something. (This is the same info we would need should you wish to order from us. No coincidence.)

We also urge you to forward this newsletter to your gaming friends. Word-of-mouth advertising is the highest form of positive feedback.

Once subscribed, you can take advantage of these many services:

  • Up to 35% discount on special-ordered NEW games drawn from our New Games Price List.
  • Player/Opponent Location Assistance (see above).
  • Want List monitoring: we'll notify you by email whenever a game you're looking for arrives in our inventory. Just send us a short list of the game titles/publishers you are actively seeking.
  • Our Update Newsletter, giving you first crack out our various sales, as well as info about what is going on in the gaming industry.
  • We will research items of special interest to you within limits, especially if the question has wider applicability. For instance, want to know which issue of an old AH General had a variant or article you're looking for? We can help you.
  • Listings of Newly Released Games and Games Soon to be Released. (See New Releases, above.)
  • Special offers during the month of your birthday (if you provide us your birth month & date; see Special Deal, above.)

Help Us Find Fine Games Lost Customes

Things change & people move. As a result, over our 19 years, we've "lost" over 1,000 of our valued customers. Their emails went bad, they moved, disconnected their phones. Perhaps they are still gaming, perhaps not. But we would like to be back in touch with them once again. Take a peek at our Lost Customer list to see if you recognize anyone you know. If so, please let us know by emailing us.

Your Suggestions for Future Newsletter Topics Invited

We always aim to please. And so knowing of topics that you feel are worth being addressed here in a future Newsletter would be helpful to us. We invite you to guide our efforts by suggesting a topic, or even writing a short article. Just email us.

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