Saturday, January 22, 2011

Of all the luck!

Over the last couple weeks, I have had a few interactions with the customer service people for several game companies. Invariably, I have been treated very well and received prompt replies. I think that it reflects well on the industry that companies are eager to keep us, the gamers, happy. So let me share a little with you.

Over the 8-1/2 years my wife and I have been together, we have bought an enormous load of games. That's what we do. Some people go clubbing, some people take frequent little vacations... we game. And we love it. But back to the point, we have bought a lot of games. And until a few weeks ago, we haven't had any issues with components.

It seems quite uncanny that over the last month, all the games we purchased had some issue. That's four games from four separate companies. Yeesh! Crazy luck that we've had. I guess if you buy enough games, you're eventually going to get one with a minor defect. It just happens. And you contact customer support, because they just make it all better. Anyway, here are the companies that we have contacted, and our responses:

1. North Star Games
Our copy of Wits & Wagers Family had a single wet-erase marker that didn't write. We were able to play the game fine, it's just that we didn't have had a marker for the fifth player. This did indeed come up in our first game. I contacted the company, and a nice fellow by the name of Andrew contacted me very quickly. He explained that there was a defective batch of markers. I received a set of replacements, plus a couple extra cards for the standard version of Wits & Wagers. Top notch service, guys!

Wits & Wagers Family

2. Z-Man Games
Our Christmas present to ourselves, Neuroshima Hex!, suffered from having a board that had an extra slice through the middle. After the first play, we had a sliver of the board between the standard middle fold of the board and this cut (probably 2-3mm wide)peel off, leaving a noticeable eyesore. My wife contacted Z-Man Games, and Zev (the Z-Man of Z-Man!) contacted her personally to address the issue. Within a few days, we had received a new board. Thank you, Z-Man!

Neuroshima Hex

3. Gamewright
Gamewright publishes, among other things, Forbidden Island. If you haven't tried it, please do! Expect a review from us soon. Anyway, upon opening the tin, we found one of the island space tiles, the Whispering Garden, had a tear across it. Since their tiles are prepunched, it likely happened when it was separated from the boardstock, since sometimes the paper top hangs to the sprue. Upon being contacted, Gamewright immediately sent a replacement. I would like to thank Emily, the woman who handled my issue. Thanks!

Forbidden Island

4. Gary Games
Yesterday, we picked up Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer from Gary Games. As with Forbidden Island, definitely expect a review of this game. We found upon opening that we were missing one of the Apprentice cards. These are particularly important because they make up your starting deck. It hasn't yet come up, but that makes it unplayable for four players. It's a bit preemptive for me to discuss their customer service, but I have sent a message to them and am awaiting a reply. I fully believe that they'll do the industry proud and ship out a replacement card soon. Update: Replacement card received, plus a promo! Thank you!

Ascension Chronicle of the Godslayer

So... that is that. I wanted to thank the customer service people at these companies. Way to go.  So... of all the luck, eh? It is truly bizarre that after buying so many games without issue, that four in a row have either missing or defective parts! Crazy!

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