I'm a bit concerned about the overall lack of interest this game has garnered over the past year.
Attendance at store championships in my region declined overall. It appears that attendance fell in other parts of the country as well.
How do you guys feel about the overall interest in the game? I feel I can always do more to get more people to play, but like Lando and everybody else, I have my own problems (working, social activities, family, cats) that prohibit me from doing more than simply participating in events.
There is also the issue of stores not promoting the game. I understand where they are coming from. If a store owner has a finite amount of time, he would be a FOOL to spend his time and resources promoting SWLCG while there are easier ways to divest people from their money, i.e. running 434 Magic events.
At GAMA, FFG announced they were starting a judge program. I hope this is similar to Decipher's squadron member/Rider of Rohan program. There wasn't really a super strong singles market for Decipher games, but Decipher found a way to get stores to promote local play by starting a volunteer program that created an incentive for volunteers to run local events and foster relationships with stores to make sure there was a local scene. Store owners simply can't be bothered to promote the game, so it would behoove FFG to find a way to create a program that promotes local play that involves volunteers who are passionate about the game as opposed to providing prize kits that find their way on eBay.
Additionally, aside from the prize kits, there is no incentive to play at stores. If FFG implemented an ELO rating system, that would spark some interest to play. A tournament locator on FFG's site would also be a nice tool to have.
I understand we're not living in the 90s anymore and we're not playing Decipher Star Wars, but if FFG just implemented the tactics Decipher employed 20 years ago of promoting local interest by creating a judge program/volunteer corp, implementing a rating system, and creating a tournament scheduling program for their website, then I feel there could be more interest in this game.