I may not be the sharpest tack in the drawer and sometimes it takes me seeing something a couple times before it hits me but I got to thinking about this the other day after seeing similar things pop up over the past few weeks.
Basically it's this,...
Is/was Warhammer 40,000 5th Edition an extinction level event for Veteran gamers?
Let me tell you what I've come across that makes me wonder this and then maybe you can decide for yourself. Keep in mind, for every thing that points to the end, there's something else to the contrary.
First was hearing about GW cutting the Tournament scene down for 2009 and then seeing both of my local GW stores close their doors.
Now I'm well aware of the global situation and I'm sure companies are going to do whatever is needed to survive but I would think that it's hard to keep the hobby alive with fewer stores and less of a Tournament circuit for Veteran players to get involved with. Let's face it, it's not the little kids with the brand new armies who come to play in the Tournaments at Games Days.
Second was my local gaming club and the decision to not support the Baltimore Games Day this year. While I didn't personally make it to the meeting to hear the entire discussion, I believe the club and more specifically, the Veteran gamers have found other games (than 40k) that give them what they are looking for. Again, it's not the little kids with the brand new armies who put together large gaming clubs and organize game nights, leagues, local tournaments, etc.
Third was an email about a post on Plastic Legions about GW and the recession. Another store closing and "lack of support" for Veteran gamers in the greater Chicago area (I believe). While it may not be about 5th edition per say, it's another nail in the coffin so to speak.
Add on the approach GW has for 40k FAQs and addressing any number of issues that are brought to light by the various bulletin boards no matter how right or wrong they are or how much it might seem like complaining... and you've got the makings of something going on.
Ultimately, I don't know. I may not have the problems with 40k that others have, and my FLGS is still going strong for the time being (I hope, boy do I hope) but I wonder if all that may change real soon.