Sep. 10, 2003
FAT MESSIAH GAMES AND IMPRESSIONS PART COMPANY
Due to incompatible business models and shrinking revenues, Fat Messiah Games will no longer be represented to the wholesale game trade by Impressions Marketing & Advertising.
"Impressions is a marketing-heavy outfit built to serve agile companies that turn several products around each year for the frontlist-oriented market," commented Neal Sofge, FMG's Super Genius. "The Fat Messiah way is entirely the opposite -- we depend solely on word-of-mouth, and specialize in carefully crafted, eclectic niche products that come out only once a year but stay in print nearly forever."
The nine-month relationship between the two companies began with the midwinter shutdown of the Wizard's Attic fulfillment operation, when Impressions acquired many former Attic clients. The increased Impressions staff workload -- combined with FMG's concentration on the Shapeshifters 10th Anniversary release -- masked the business model mismatch until after this year's Gen Con.
Reduced FMG sales in 2003 due to ongoing changes in the hobby made the arrangement even less feasible. According to Sofge, "We understand that Aldo's operation needs to stay profitable, and the Messiah's old-school products no longer sufficiently contribute to that goal." The companies are separating amiably, and Sofge is investigating other avenues for keeping FMG in the channel. "We'll figure something else out, just keep watching the Web site."
September 15-19 will be the last Impressions shipment week for FMG. "Fat Messiah has been great to work with, it is sad to see these products and many others being missed by distributors," said Aldo Ghiozzi, Owner of Impressions.
The trade fulfillment hiatus will not affect direct FMG mail orders, recently taken over by longtime ally Sierra Madre Games. Effects on product release schedules, already badly scrambled by cashflow problems from the Wizard's Attic shutdown, are not known at this time.
Fat Messiah Games, based in Los Angeles, Calif., has been producing unique fantasy and science fiction adventure games since 1991. FMG products feature tactical richness, innovative mechanics, and high playability.Impressions Advertising & Marketing, based in Brentwood, Calif., works as a fulfillment consolidator for nearly 60 hobby game companies, in addition to producing the retailer publication, GameBuyer and the consumer demo CD, GamePlay.