[Editor’s Note: this piece about the Games Workshop 500th store opening extravaganza comes to us from Bleeding Cool contributor Jessica Dale.]
It isn’t every day that a company gets to celebrate something as epic as a 500th physical store, but at the end of last month, Games Workshop was able to do just that. On September 29th, the newest Warhammer store opened in Hong Kong and GW wanted to make the most of the milestone, so they coordinated a worldwide shindig on October 20, 2018, and we were there to celebrate along with them.
“The alarm went off entirely too many hours before sunrise. I bundled myself up, gathered my hot tea, GW Balrog model and traveling hobby kit, lunch bag with snacks, and went out to face the still cold and dark morning. My husband had assured me that if I was there at 07:00, I would possibly be third or fourth in line, so when I arrived at 06:43 (after driving by at 05:30 when I got my tea), I was overjoyed to see that I was the first person to get to the shop, as well as the shopping center in general.
The goal: be the first person into the Warhammer Hillsboro store. Done! The loot: one Warhammer 40K Primaris Lieutenant, one Age of Sigmar Bladegheist Revenant, a one-of-a-kind commemorative 500thstore opening pin, and six artist print postcards of Warhammer and Sigmar well known artwork and box art. Only 3 more hours of remaining, and it was finally beginning to warm up and light out. I could do this.
As I waited, I was able to live tweet about my experience of doing just that… waiting. There were birds and squirrels, three or four families and 2 dog walkers, but after sitting in the cold for an hour and 45 minutes, there was still no sign of anyone else coming to make this event a blockbuster.
Around 08:00, I had to move back to my car in order to let the local window washers do their magic…thanks, guys!
I was still in my car when the store manager strolled in to his warm and inviting shop, chuckling at me and shaking his head. It was 09:15.
Around 09:40, people finally started to trickle in. One here, two there. By the time 10:00 opening time hit, there was a group of 8 of us, eager to get inside and get our cold hands on some sweet swag.
Not a one of us was disappointed. The postcards were beautiful and the commemorative 500 pin was durable and well-crafted. Each of the miniatures lived up to the gold standard that Games Workshop is known for.
We checked back in with store manager Ian McCann halfway through his workday, and as you can see, there was a clear favorite when it came to the in-store minis. He had stated to his customers that the in-store minis would be limited to one each per person today, but you could order as many as you’d like (built to order and shipped at a currently undisclosed time). At that point, he had given away all of his thirty prints, and the pins were not far behind.
Games Workshop continues to wow hobbyists with new and exciting models and events across the world. Head in to a Games Workshop or Warhammer store today and learn more about this exciting hobby!