Some publishers consider it their business to save friendly local game stores (FLGS), claiming that these locations are the points where new players enter the hobby. The big threat to these stores is online retailers who, owing to less overhead and fewer license requirements, can offer big discounts on publishers’ products to cash-strapped consumers.

Mayfair Games famously threatens to blacklist any retailer that sells their products at less than 20% off retail price. Catalyst Game Labs offers free to sell PDFs to purchasers of their physical product at a FLGS. Panini is trying to control exactly which retailers are allowed to sell its products. And I need not mention GW.

Now comes Cryptozoic, new holders of the WoW TCG license. They are introducing class starter decks, available only at FLGSs, intended for exactly the type of new players they want to bring into the hobby.

And now comes Green Ronin with Pre-Order Plus, offering discounts on upcoming online PDFs to people who obtain special codes, available only in person at FLGSs.

Update: And Margaret Weis Productions jumps on the bandwagon.