We're getting a lot more kids in lately buying models for Warhammer 40K. Unfortunately, the trend (and this is new for me), is their general lack of knowledge or even interest in the army they play. The rules are in their codex, but few seem to own one nor are they (or their parents) interested in spending money on something as lowly as a book. They come up to me and ask questions about their army, stuff available in the codex on the shelf not two steps from their beloved blue super men. How they make their armies is beyond me. It seems to be piecemeal, based on what their friends have told them or what some GW employee suggested, with probably no hope of ever having a legal army.
I'm thinking this has to do with the GW sales method at the company stores. They bring them in, show them the game, build much excitement and get them to buy models. Wash, rinse, repeat. When those kids visit a store that's not entirely devoted to selling GW products, they're lost and I feel like a goon for not knowing every detail of every army. Yet, it's not like customers come in and expect me to know the difference in damage between a Dungeons & Dragons fireball and flame strike. It's in the book. Is 40K a game that attracts the illiterate? Perhaps it's just that their kids.
My goal, which is probably in vain, is to attempt to get the kids and parents to buy their codex before they buy yet another model (YAM). I just wish the GW stores would focus more on empowering their customers rather than selling them more plastic. Teach the kid to fish so he can come in knowing what he needs. Maybe if they actually built an army list and did the math on how much it would cost, the process would end before it began. Nevertheless, the kids need the books.