After last year's ETC, a vote was held to determine the major Fantasy gaming system for the 2016 tournament. Not surprisingly - given a lot of the authors were voters - The Ninth Age was selected.
This must have been disappointing to Mantic as they had made efforts - including supplying a free Rulebook giveaway at ETC 2015 - to get Kings of War selected.
By way of consolation, it was proposed that KIngs of War be included as a two day side event to increase European exposure and position itself for future growth. Initially this seemed to gain good traction and it looked hopeful that a significant event would be held.
I was checking through the ETC forums on TWF the other day and saw that this KOW event appears to be in trouble. It was initially envisaged that there be four man teams arranged along ETC national lines. Some countries, notably France, pushed for multiple teams from each country. I note now that there appears to be less than half a dozen committed teams and three of these are French.
Again this looks like a massive missed opportunity for Mantic. I appreciate that they must have been disappointed to miss out on the big dance but they did have a real opportunity to widen their community. However the company, and their marquee players have put what appears to be little or no effort into build a foothiold at what is a substantial gaming event. There was no reason that given support by the existing playing base that the side event could not have grown to a "main ev enter" like Flames of War did.
To me this is real symptomatic of what I have seen from Mantic since I have been interested in KoW. They get an opportunity and then they fail to capitalise on it to the extent they should.
At present they seem to be relying largely on the adoption of KoW as the system for the US Masters as their key KoW growth mechanism. I've seen little evidence that there is real growth in the UK despite the opportunity they were presented with WFB's demise. In the rest of the world the push is purely from motivated individuals rather than from any efforts by the company as to how they can help. Yes, I know they see things as community led but I am seeing no evidence that they reach out to the community.
Here in New Zealand, for instance, the game is in a delicate state. It could easily flounder in the next few months as competition from other systems - T9A, possibly a revamped AoS - come online.
Mantic really need to do some community intelligence because as I see it they are letting things slip through their hands......regularly.