January 29, 2023


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Hasbro strongly refutes claims that it is “destroying” Magic: The Gathering

Hasbro strongly refutes claims that it is "destroying" Magic: The Gathering

In November, analysts at Bank of America issued a rare double downgrade on Hasbro stock, claiming the toy giant was “destroying the long-term value” of its shares. Magic: The Gathering Branding by overprinting the cards. On Thursday, CEO Chris Cox and Wizards of the Coast president Cynthia W. Williams strongly rejects these allegations. The executives spent nearly 45 minutes during a “side chat” publicly defending their strategy, while at the same time revealing important details about the future of the collectible card game — and its sibling, the popular role-playing game. Dungeons and Dragons.

the offer, which has been archived onlinewith a detailed look at the file Charm player base. About 25 minutes later, host Arpiné Kocharyan, an analyst from UBS, hit the spot.

“There was a claim that you were printing too many cards,” Kocharian asked. “What’s your one-sentence answer to that?” Williams began by explaining that major releases are not produced on a limited basis. Instead, the company uses a “print-on-demand” model, in which Hasbro pushes more cards into the sales channel after their initial release when retailers order more. Follow Williams:

Average post-launch sales amounts for our premiere collections remained unchanged in 2022 compared to 2021. All in all, there is no evidence of that Charm overprinted, the feeling of “Charm Needs to lower printing runs to support prices” – this is a misunderstanding of our business and our customers. If our prices for a potential product go up dramatically soon after our launch, it simply means that we are not adequately meeting customer demand and are making millions of players unhappy because of their lack of access to the card that they want to play.

Later, Williams pressed another claim, the latter of which had recently come from vocal members of the Charm Online community – that is, lower prices on the secondary market is evidence that Hasbro releases very many sets of cards every year. Williams replied:

We understand that some players focus on the collectible trading aspects of our product, and we are always pleased to see players enjoying and appreciating our products for years after initial release. But we do not participate in the activity of the secondary market for Charm products, and we don’t get any revenue from trading or selling. What we hear from each other [Wizard’s Play Network-affiliated local game] Stores that trade and sell cards after the initial sale, like any market for any other collectible products, some individual products and cards become more collectible than others, and values ​​can change over time due to many external factors – many entirely unrelated to the number of cards printed . We have no indication that there is [have] Any widespread negative changes in trading or selling interest after buying Charm products.

Williams and Cox also spoke explicitly about the fan reaction to the latest release Magic: The Gathering 30th Anniversary Edition. The announcement of a nearly $1,000 box of four 15-card booster packs angered many longtime players because it featured reprints of incredibly rare cards, including the legendary Black Lotus. Hasbro heard those comments loud and clear, Williams said, and responded in kind by releasing fewer of those kits onto the market. while, CharmWarhammer 40,000 decks of cards – part of its prosperity universes beyond Initiative – It is now in its third printing, and Hasbro is making as many of these cards as possible to meet consumer demand.

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Charm “It will be our first billion-dollar brand this year,” said Williams. “We’re growing that brand ahead of the industry, pushing the boundaries of where we can take the product. More often than not, we get it right.” […] Sometimes we step back and listen to customer feedback.”

Williams went on to say that audiences should expect six teaser releases in 2023, just like in 2022. However, those releases will be evenly distributed throughout the year.

“In the second half of 2022, we had a really compressed release schedule that was driven in part by supply chain issues,” said Williams. “But in 2023, we’ll be back to our preferred release cadence of about two months between backing pole sets, with micro-singles interspersed in between.”

Hardcore fans of Charm We should also expect more crossover with nonCharm Intellectual property, such as The Lord of the Rings and Doctor Who. Going forward, the executives said, these types of collaborations would become the primary method for training new players.

So what does all this have to do with D&D? Williams said that many of the growth factors that led to success Charm It will also apply to D&D – especially when it comes to digital content. CharmThe executives said the biggest area for growth is the digital space. The so-called “mixed players” – that is, players who play Charm Using both physical and online cards Magic: The Gathering Arena – Spend 40% more than others Charm players. Therefore, the goal is to open up similar opportunities for players to spend money through Newly acquired D&D Beyond digital toolkit.

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“Dungeon Master.” […] They only make up about 20% of the audience, but they are the largest share of paying players [today]said Williams, who previously worked at Microsoft as general manager and vice president of the gaming systems commercial team. “For the rest of the players at the table, we believe going digital will allow us to offer more options to create a rewarding experience.”

You don’t have to work hard to read between the lines on this one. Hasbro is already getting customers into the habit of downloading digital content through D&D Beyond with free stuff right now – like Digital advent calendar for this holiday season. Players should expect more microtransactions in D&D Beyond throughout 2023.