Tuesday, 7 September 2010

The Glorious Consumer - Maelstrom Games

The aim of The Glorious Consumer is to review the different retailers that we as wargamers regularly interact with and to help inform people when making a decision as to where they want to buy their shiny new toys from! First up is Maelstrom Games. I placed 4 orders of varying sizes for different products over a two week period. I'll outline the orders below and the dates on which they were dispatched and then go into greater detail afterwards.

Order #1 Placed 20/07/2010
Vampire Lord (in stock)
Dispatched 20/07/2010

Order #2 Placed 27/07/2010
Citadel Water Effects (in stock)
Grave Guard Regiment (out of stock)
Vampire Counts Army Book (out of stock)

Order split in 2. Order #2
Citadel Water Effects
Vampire Counts Army Book
Dispatched 08/08/2010

Order #2.1
Grave Guard Regiment
Dispatched 11/08/2010

Order #3 Placed 30/07/2010
Bleached Bone (in stock)
Camo Green (in stock)
Detail Brush (out of stock)
Fine Detail Brush (out of stock)
Graveyard Earth (out of stock)
Hawk Turquoise (out of stock)
Macharius Solar Orange (in stock)
Rotting Flesh (out of stock)
Scorched Brown (out of stock)
Small Drybrush (out of stock)
Standard Brush (out of stock)
Basecoat Brush (out of stock) Dispatched 04/08/2010

Order #4 Placed 01/08/2010
Citadel Wood (out of stock at supplier)
Vampire Counts Battalion (out of stock)
Warhammer Battle Magic (out of stock at supplier)
Woodland Scenics Long Grass (out of stock)

Order split in 2. Order #4
Citadel Wood
Vampire Counts Battalion
Woodland Scenics Long Grass
Dispatched 13/08/2010

Order #4.1
Warhammer Battle Magic
Still not dispatched

Now, at a glance it's clear that some of those orders have been dealt with incredibly quick, some an average amount of time and one is still outstanding which is a little bit worrying. I've not taken into account postage times etc. just the time it took from the order until the dispatch of the order, it wouldn't be fair to judge Maelstrom on the effectiveness of the postal service! The orders that were in stock were dispatched very quickly and clearly where stock issues have arisen the orders have been split so that I get as much of my order as soon as possible. This all seems very good with me. I think it's worth taking into account that I've ordered mostly Games Workshop products and I'd heard that they'd started limiting the Independent Traders to one order per week. I'm not sure how accurate this is, as I'm not in the know there but it would certainly explain the way the dates fall for orders and dispatch. Stock seemingly gets ordered Thursday/Friday and arrives Monday/Tuesday ready for dispatch. The final outstanding order is a bit worrying but in their defence Maelstrom Games have the product listed as out of stock at the supplier so it's hard to really find any fault with them. Considering the logistics of the orders I'm quite impressed with the times taken to dispatch them otherwise. All the orders have been well packed in appropriate containers and I've not had any issue with short orders or damaged products. If something is in stock on their website then Maelstrom really are a great deal as the discount and the quick dispatch times make them my current favourite online retailer. For the items that aren't in stock, unless they're needed urgently, then they're still the best choice as the discount makes it more than worth the couple of days wait. If I needed something straight away though that wasn't in stock at Maelstrom and it was over £10 in value I'd still be tempted to order direct from Games Workshop just to be sure I'd get the item in the shortest possible lead time and with the free postage currently on offer.

Maelstrom Games receives a 9/10 from me!
If you have any experiences with Maelstrom you'd like to share or have any questions just leave a comment. Hope this helps anybody that has considered ordering from them but wanted a little more information!

P.S. I can't believe I forgot to mention the awesome Moneyback deal they have! You get 1% of your order in store credit to use on your future orders. It might not sound like a lot but it quickly adds up and can be really handy for knocking a few extra pennies off an order to make it affordable or for those of us that are married, extra money off always sells the idea better to the Mrs!


John said...

THe other great thing about Maelstrom is that you get free postage which for those of us living in New Zealand is a godsend. Ordering from the US for example you half of your order cost goes on shipping - making it a no goer.

Maelstrom also discounts all of their stuff, and even with exchange rate fluctuations I have made savings of up to 30-40% on local prices ordering through them

mywargaming said...

I have recently taken up Maelstrom Games offer to purchase my junk. I gave them a load of half used sprues from a battalion box set plus a couple of other box sets and a few metal parts I had left over and got a return of £17. Tyler gave them a box of his old used miniatures, which was over two kilos in weight and received £44.

Thats over £60 we received for a load of junk, which we didn’t want or need. I don’t know what they do with all the junk, but they must make a profit?

I give Maelstrom 10/10.