I was listening to a radio phone in debate about 3D printing the other day which of course was focusing on the creation of a printed Handgun in the US, but it got me thinking about 3D printing and the future of our hobby.
Now I'm no technology expert by any means but 3D printing surely raises some interesting questions.
Will we one day be able to scan a model and print off a copy for ourselves? We can probably already do this now but I imagine the costs involved would currently make this unviable for your average Space Marine... But what about for that one off expensive character model?? If the plans were published on the Internet you could do it?
The costs are bound to come down as always will this lead to everyone being able to do printing in their own home or will it be more like printing photographs now? Yes I can print my own photos and once in a while I do, but the inks not cheap and it's a hassle... Much easier to pop into Asda and get 300 photos for a few quid....is this the future model?
What about the studios themselves? Will they all go bust? Maybe we need to look at the example of music? I can download illegal tunes and I admit I have in the past but I don't now...I use amazon or iTunes. I like to do it legally and I like the 'real' thing. Maybe in the future that's what will happen?
Games workshop, privateer press et al?? They must be quaking in their boots and if not they should be! At the very least they should be looking at HMV etc and seeing bankruptcy as a possible future? Now much as lots of people dislike GW I'm sure most people admire their models and probably got into the hobby through them. What if they ceased to exist?
The demise of Gw and our hobby has been predicted for a long time... Video games were meant to kill it but they haven't so probably 3D printing won't either but I do think it will see a change!
Maybe it will bring a positive change.... More designers in their own bedrooms, more smaller independents, cheaper models, more added extras to inspire loyalty... Who knows????
Just a few thoughts......