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teckno72
06-01-2008, 12:46 AM
Recently, White Wolf's Exalted: Dreams of the First Age and Wizards of the Coast's fourth edition of D&D have completely sold out in their first runs. This shows there is definitely still a desire for fantasy roleplaying products in the world today. I think this is for the forseeable future, but I have no data to back that up. I just think it's a pleasant thought in this time of gloom and doom. Oh, and Dark Heresy by Mongoose also sold out on its first print run. I know that the fourth edition of D&D will get a second print run for sure.

tesral
06-02-2008, 10:30 AM
Exalted YEA! 4e, not so much.

Valdar
06-02-2008, 12:19 PM
I assume you mean sold out to retailers? Hopefully it's not a launch like some of the recent consoles where you just couldn't get one...

gdmcbride
06-02-2008, 07:30 PM
I assume you mean sold out to retailers? Hopefully it's not a launch like some of the recent consoles where you just couldn't get one...

All it means is that distributors and direct marketing sales have bought out the entire run. Likely, it will remain easy to acquire in game stores for quite some time.

Still...I'm not sure I would dally on purchasing the books unless you are prepared to wait until August for the second printing. If demand is high (and it likely will be), then they could become quite scarce in certain markets.

Gary

tesral
06-02-2008, 07:45 PM
All it means is that distributors and direct marketing sales have bought out the entire run. Likely, it will remain easy to acquire in game stores for quite some time.


Ah I see, like the record sales of MS/Vista. They are all wholesale, not in the hands of consumers.

gdmcbride
06-03-2008, 10:25 PM
Ah I see, like the record sales of MS/Vista. They are all wholesale, not in the hands of consumers.

It means a little more than that. Direct internet sales (like via Amazon and Buy.com) are definitely headed straight into consumers hands. And those sales numbers have been impressive.

In Vista's case, the great number of pre-sales includes the tremendous number of PCs getting Vista installed on them by default thanks to long ago negotiated contracts between Microsoft and manufacturers. RPGs have no equivalent to that. Store owners are not forced to order the book by anyone other than their customers.

What is true, is that internet sales are not enough to yet say that 4th edition is a hit. But they are powerful prognostic indicator. WotC obvious thought they and distributor orders were powerful enough that they immediately ordered another print run.

I expect the core books to do VERY well. What will be the real test is the adventures and the supplements that follow. For D&D 4th to be a real success it needs to keep moving books.

Gary

tesral
06-03-2008, 11:11 PM
For D&D 4th to be a real success it needs to keep moving books.

And I consider that truly unfortunate. The need to move books is the sole reason we even have a 4e.

fmitchell
06-03-2008, 11:56 PM
The need to move books is the sole reason we even have a 4e.

Not really. 4e exists because a significant number of players were dissatisfied with 3.x, which in turn arose because a significant number of players thought AD&D 2ed needed a more modern and coherent rule set, which in turn arose because somebody thought 1ed needed rules to cover more situations, which in turn arose because somebody thought Original D&D needed expansion and revision.

While there are some gamers who find their Perfect Rules somewhere, or house-rule a system until it becomes their Perfect Rules, a larger number will look to upgrade and improve their experience by moving to newer versions, or different games entirely.

This may be hard to believe, but for those of us who don't have the time to tweak rules, or who don't want to write something new from the ground up, there are a few people who do such things for a living. In order for them to do it for a living, they need to get paid. To attract people to their product, said people eschew mimeographed pages in favor of well-bound books (Mongoose not withstanding), with attractive layouts, professional or at least semi-professional artwork, and lucid prose. To aid in such efforts, professional game writing people partner with (*gasp*) non-gamers like graphic designers, artists, and editors. Even more incredibly, they also rely on "marketers", who think up the best ways to sell their game books to other people, and "investors" who provide up-front money for all this activity. And here's where it gets weird: in order for the game-writing people to write games for a living, they have to sell enough books not just for themselves, but all these other people involved ... *and* with enough left over to reward the investor-people and fund the next set of books.

I know it's a lot to take in at once. Breathe deeply. I had trouble with the attractive well-bound books part. I still don't get why someone would want more than mimeographed pages, with those lovely incomplete and run-on sentences, those provocative typos made with an actual typewriter, that poorly but lovingly drawn line-art, and above all the intoxicating smell with the purply print that smudges on your fingers ... but some people are just strange.

Valdar
06-04-2008, 08:41 AM
And I consider that truly unfortunate. The need to move books is the sole reason we even have a 4e.

And the reason we had any version before that of any game ever.

tesral
06-04-2008, 10:28 AM
There are a few people who do such things for a living.

And that requires that they move books.

As to the perfect system, I have yet to see it. 4e will have people complain about the rules not working right to the same degree that every other edition has had people complain.

D&D by the nature of the game is a complex system. I seriously doubt it will ever be perfect. However if they keep making major changes like the jump from, 3e to 4e it will never even approch that. 4e is a zero start. Not an improvment of 3.5 They have said as much. I question the over all wisdom of such a move. I would be looking for gaffs and bobbles in the 3.5 system and smoothing them out. Make my book a must have to everyone playing the 3.5 game. Not throw everything they have so far in their face and demand they start buying the endless book-o-rama all over again.

gdmcbride
06-05-2008, 05:00 AM
As to the perfect system, I have yet to see it. 4e will have people complain about the rules not working right to the same degree that every other edition has had people complain.

D&D by the nature of the game is a complex system. I seriously doubt it will ever be perfect. However if they keep making major changes like the jump from, 3e to 4e it will never even approch that. 4e is a zero start. Not an improvment of 3.5 They have said as much. I question the over all wisdom of such a move. I would be looking for gaffs and bobbles in the 3.5 system and smoothing them out. Make my book a must have to everyone playing the 3.5 game. Not throw everything they have so far in their face and demand they start buying the endless book-o-rama all over again.

Seeking perfection in RPGs, like seeking perfection in anything, is mostly a chasing after wind.

All versions of D&D have been money motivated. Even the hand-mimeographed, hand-stapled, hand-stickered brown box edition released in 1974 existed only because Gary Gygax thought it would be well received. You can go over to dragonsfoot.org and dig through the Gary Gygax Q&A section if you don't believe me. He was quite direct about this.

As far as 4th edition game designers, it is simply factually wrong to state they aren't trying to fix 3.5.

"3e got a lot of things right, but anyone who has played it for a time knows that it gets things wrong. There are also legacy issues with the game that have persisted unquestioned for years. 4e is all about taking the things that work in D&D, keeping them in the game, and fixing everything else." -- Mike Mearls, quoted from EN World

Though clearly you disagree on their path, it is also obvious that they too were trying to fix 3.5 and make it a better game.

I'm not saying 4th edition is a definite improvement. I still don't own the books. I have only read the very incomplete quick start rules in 'Keep on the Shadowfell' (a very mediocre module to be sure). But they were definitely trying to improve the game of D&D. Ask me in a week or two if they succeeded.

Gary

Webhead
06-05-2008, 08:43 AM
I'm not saying 4th edition is a definite improvement. I still don't own the books. I have only read the very incomplete quick start rules in 'Keep on the Shadowfell' (a very mediocre module to be sure). But they were definitely trying to improve the game of D&D. Ask me in a week or two if they succeeded.

I think this is pretty well stated. I'm (mostly) not really questioning WotC's intentions on making a better D&D experience...just whether or not their newest iteration will succeed in making me want to play D&D again. Only time will tell.

teckno72
06-06-2008, 12:05 PM
I agree, Webhead. I'd really like to WANT to play D&D again. That would be nice, seriously. I've been burned out on it for years. Not that it's not a bad game, but I got tired of it (running it for at least a year on end). I started out with D&D as well. :yawn: It makes me feel jaded, but there's so much more out there to try now! :)

Valdar
06-06-2008, 12:37 PM
As far as 4th edition game designers, it is simply factually wrong to state they aren't trying to fix 3.5.

"3e got a lot of things right, but anyone who has played it for a time knows that it gets things wrong. There are also legacy issues with the game that have persisted unquestioned for years. 4e is all about taking the things that work in D&D, keeping them in the game, and fixing everything else." -- Mike Mearls, quoted from EN World


Mike Mearls has written a lot about this. The new design philosophy is "fun for everyone, all the time". Fighters spending the whole adventure taking their basic attack = bad. Wizards deciding when to use their big spell, and doing nothing the rest of the time = bad. Clerics doing nothing but healing, or requiring a party to have a cleric at all = bad. Rogues not being able to use their signature attack most of the time due to positioning or immune targets = bad. Even confirming crits, which looked great on paper, sucked in actual play.

I guess the designers wanted people to actually play D&D without house rules and have it not be a nightmare. Playing 3.5 as written is a game most of us don't want to play- the RPGA uses RAW, and I have not heard good things about it.

Dimthar
06-06-2008, 01:20 PM
Recently, White Wolf's Exalted: Dreams of the First Age and Wizards of the Coast's fourth edition of D&D have completely sold out in their first runs. This shows there is definitely still a desire for fantasy roleplaying products in the world today.

I can not find any reason for not being "happy" with the news of any RPG being sold out.

.

MooseAlmighty
06-06-2008, 09:38 PM
Nice to hear three new games are all doing well! Good for the hobby as a whole that folks are still playing and/or trying new games. Especially with so many other choices for entertainment.

nijineko
06-08-2008, 03:37 PM
And that requires that they move books.

As to the perfect system, I have yet to see it. 4e will have people complain about the rules not working right to the same degree that every other edition has had people complain.

D&D by the nature of the game is a complex system. I seriously doubt it will ever be perfect. However if they keep making major changes like the jump from, 3e to 4e it will never even approch that. 4e is a zero start. Not an improvment of 3.5 They have said as much. I question the over all wisdom of such a move. I would be looking for gaffs and bobbles in the 3.5 system and smoothing them out. Make my book a must have to everyone playing the 3.5 game. Not throw everything they have so far in their face and demand they start buying the endless book-o-rama all over again.

everyone asked the same question when apple decided not to retain backwards compatibility in favor of better tech. they are still around despite the setback that turned into.

d&d has two main sources of income. new players and new books. new players buy the core books. old players tend to update or buy new books, or just settle down with the version of the system they like and stick to it. there is nothing intrinstically wrong about any of those methods.

there is also nothing morally or ethically wrong with putting out new books. even lots of them. people who can and want too will buy them. people who can't or won't will ignore or steal them.

perhaps from a personal idealistic point of view, there could be justification for protesting against tsr/wotc/hasbro putting out more and more books. as long as the material is new and interesting, who cares-but that's my point of view. if they start rehashing old 4e material in various forms and call it a new book, then i'll be right there with you protesting.

i'm not sold on 4e at all, personally. i'll check it out someday, i'm sure. but for now, i'll just house rule whatever i need until the group is happy with the mix. there are enough good ideas in there to work with for me to keep going with my d&d version of choice. ^^

by way of comparision, i think exalted (and by extension most white wolf product) is pretty lousy, mostly for it's cosmology, but hey, everyone's opinion is different. i have a good friend who loves exalted. doesn't stop us from swapping stories about our exploits and enjoying our conversations immensely. ^^

tesral
06-08-2008, 07:53 PM
perhaps from a personal idealistic point of view, there could be justification for protesting against tsr/wotc/hasbro putting out more and more books. as long as the material is new and interesting, who cares-but that's my point of view. if they start rehashing old 4e material in various forms and call it a new book, then i'll be right there with you protesting.


You better believe they are rehashing old 3e materials right this very moment to sell as brand new 4e books. The beauty of a total rebuild is a complete new set of everything because nothing for 3e will work with 4e.

Refining 3e would have let you continue to use all those 3e books you had. Now they can sell it all to you again in the new and updated version.

Dimthar
06-08-2008, 10:47 PM
perhaps from a personal idealistic point of view, there could be justification for protesting against tsr/wotc/hasbro putting out more and more books. as long as the material is new and interesting, who cares-but that's my point of view. if they start rehashing old 4e material in various forms and call it a new book, then i'll be right there with you protesting.


For those of us who have been playing ADnD and 3.X the real change is in the form of the Core Books. They directly represent the new game mechanics. for those who decide to move to 4E it will be a matter of personal choice to buy any of the other rule books (Class Handbooks, Arms & Equipment, etc).

The rehashing of 3.X into 4E is unavoidable and necessary. It will appeal to New Players who are being introduced to D&D since the material will be compatible with the current edition and for all purposes NEW to them. Those who perhaps by research or word of mouth decide that some of the Older Editions are worth trying will do so, or will incorporate some of the previous rules in their games. But there is so much labor one is willing to put in converting from one edition to another, so is likely they will stick to the new products.

Perhaps "Sales Numbers" in the rehashed materials are a better indication of how many new players are in the market, since it is fair to say that older players will be less willing to buy more of the same stuff.

.

MooseAlmighty
06-09-2008, 04:57 PM
A thread begun to say "hurrah three games are doing well!" becomes a debate:redface: ah the internet....


You better believe they are rehashing old 3e materials right this very moment to sell as brand new 4e books. The beauty of a total rebuild is a complete new set of everything because nothing for 3e will work with 4e.

Refining 3e would have let you continue to use all those 3e books you had. Now they can sell it all to you again in the new and updated version.

Well sure... they rehashed AD&D books for 2nd edition, served them again with 3rd edition, re-released them for 3.5 (dangit even within 3.5 stuff changed as one of my players with the spell compendium had different versions than what I had in the PHB!) And those following Pathfinder will have a series of 3.75 books...

4 editions of Shadowrun. White Wolf line overhaul. Turns out RPG companies are actually publishing companies :eek:

amardolem
06-09-2008, 05:27 PM
That's all well and good (the selling many copies) and you can quote Gygax as saying he thought white box D&D (Greyhawk, Blackmoor, Eldritch Wizardry) would be well received, but to compare it to HASBRO, in terms of goals, marketing, or anything really, is ridiculous. Give the game a chance for the sake of the (well paid) people like Mike Mearls that have been working on this, but I see no reason whatsoever to jump on this bandwagon. My money is on Paizo for better or worse, just by virtue of doing everything in the open as opposed to the huge corporations that have to exclude independant designers out of fear of their cash cow going south. This is as inflammatory as I get, as I usually lurk, instead of commenting, so if I must be lambasted so be it.:laugh:

Vulture
06-10-2008, 12:09 PM
D&D isnt the only game getting an update this summer, unfortunetly, i liked D&D 3.5. i also have to update to Warhammer 40k 5th edition, even thought 4th ed came out 4 short years ago, *sniff* where does the time go?

Grimwell
06-10-2008, 11:03 PM
Where does the *money* go. So much to buy!

Even if you don't like the books a particular company is making, this is good news. It means that more people will take that chance and fund another gaming company as they can see that there is a demand for games, and profit in it.

That gives us, the customers, more potential options to find the game we are content with for this week.

If you want to begrudge a business for trying to be profitable, do so knowing that you are advocating a slow painful death for the hobby. That's what happens when the companies that support it close their doors.

Oh sure, you and your circle of friends can cling to your books and play forever without spending a dime, but there won't be any fresh blood...

jkfoote
06-17-2008, 01:51 AM
Mike Mearls has written a lot about this. The new design philosophy is "fun for everyone, all the time". Fighters spending the whole adventure taking their basic attack = bad. Wizards deciding when to use their big spell, and doing nothing the rest of the time = bad. Clerics doing nothing but healing, or requiring a party to have a cleric at all = bad. Rogues not being able to use their signature attack most of the time due to positioning or immune targets = bad. Even confirming crits, which looked great on paper, sucked in actual play.

I guess the designers wanted people to actually play D&D without house rules and have it not be a nightmare. Playing 3.5 as written is a game most of us don't want to play- the RPGA uses RAW, and I have not heard good things about it.

I was able to play all those guys with all there abilities without house rules. Wizards and fighters have no business having the same BAB

Valdar
06-17-2008, 08:13 AM
Wizards and fighters have no business having the same BAB

Different BAB was why D&D was broken at higher levels (and things like save-or-die). With the game going to level 30 now, the Fighter would have a 75 percent boost to hit over the wizard- anything the fighter could hit on a 6 would be something the wizard could only hit on a natural 20. With at-will spells like Magic Missile now requiring a to-hit roll, that would have made for a completely broken game.

cplmac
06-17-2008, 09:45 AM
Yes, as tesral said, they need to move books. But then as any company that is in business, they won't last very long if they don't turn a profit. In order to do that, they must sell their product or service.

For those that wanted to see fixes for the problems, this is where they will hopefully find what they are looking for. For those that are happy with the system they have been using, keep on gaming. To quote tesral, "Just because a new edition comes out, the words are not going to fall off of the pages of the previous edition's books."

Webhead
06-17-2008, 10:33 AM
For those that wanted to see fixes for the problems, this is where they will hopefully find what they are looking for. For those that are happy with the system they have been using, keep on gaming. To quote tesral, "Just because a new edition comes out, the words are not going to fall off of the pages of the previous edition's books."

Agreed. For those who want a different experience than what previous editions have to offer for whatever reason, 4e may tickle your fancy. For those who have found their happiness with [Edition X] in one way or another, keep playing your preferred game. There's nothing wrong with that.

There's also nothing that says you can't play more than one version of the game. I presently find appeal in both Basic D&D (Rules Cyclopedia) and 4e for different reasons (Basic D&D largely for simplicity and nostalgia). But I get the distinct feeling that most players I know will suffer through 4e before they will "take a step backward" to Basic D&D (and all that that implies).

Kilrex
06-17-2008, 04:27 PM
Different BAB was why D&D was broken at higher levels (and things like save-or-die). With the game going to level 30 now, the Fighter would have a 75 percent boost to hit over the wizard- anything the fighter could hit on a 6 would be something the wizard could only hit on a natural 20. With at-will spells like Magic Missile now requiring a to-hit roll, that would have made for a completely broken game.

Thats why most 3e spells are touch or area effects at higher levels. Wiz or Sorc in melee is always bad.

InfoStorm
06-18-2008, 12:30 PM
While their first printing may have sold out, I went into a book store the other day, not only was it 100% 3e, but they didn't even have blank spaces where 4e stock would have been.

We'll see how well it helps the gaming market, in time. I also don't see it hurting the market either. Just for WAG numbers, if say of 100% of 3e players, it want 50/50 split, then you will have the same number of people playing + new people to 4e who weren't playing 3e. 3e people aren't going to STOP playing just because 4e is out.

Dimthar
06-18-2008, 09:40 PM
One theory out there is that their "Customer Base" was not longer consuming 3.X products. So they decided to target a different type of consumers (MMO & Miniature gamers). By doing so, they alienated probably a good part of their original customers (but since technically they were not consuming anymore).

The Good of this theory: Those who stopped buying D&D may move to other brands, therefore increasing the revenue of the other RPG Publishing companies, if WoTC manages to attract players from the MMO and Miniatures group, the total base of RPG Players may have actually increased.

The Bad of this theory: If WotC does not manage to increase their customer base significantly, it is going to be a slow bye bye to D&D.

.

Valdar
06-19-2008, 11:30 AM
The Bad of this theory: If WotC does not manage to increase their customer base significantly, it is going to be a slow bye bye to D&D.

.

Isn't this basically what happened in '97? I don't see D&D going under for good- like Star Trek, it's just got too much fan power to go away forever.

agoraderek
06-19-2008, 12:30 PM
Isn't this basically what happened in '97? I don't see D&D going under for good- like Star Trek, it's just got too much fan power to go away forever.

true, but if it doesn't meet sales expectations, hasbro might just sell it off, like TSR sold out under the weight of their fiscal burden.

WotC made their bed. if enough of the people who've played D&D as their primary rpg dont lie down with them, and they can't convince a LOT of new gamers or people who didnt like D&D in the first place to jump in, well, their handlers at hasbro may not be so happy with them. and they cannot turn the clock back, 4.0 has taken quite a bit of development and tooling to try a do-over...

Valdar
06-19-2008, 04:01 PM
true, but if it doesn't meet sales expectations, hasbro might just sell it off, like TSR sold out under the weight of their fiscal burden.


Right- WotC was basically a 3rd party publisher of D&D before they bought the game outright. Would be ironic if Paizo bought D&D, then drew the ire of all their previous fans by trying to make it profitable like WotC did...

Dimthar
06-19-2008, 10:07 PM
Wrong Thread. Can someone delete it?

agoraderek
06-19-2008, 10:10 PM
Right- WotC was basically a 3rd party publisher of D&D before they bought the game outright. Would be ironic if Paizo bought D&D, then drew the ire of all their previous fans by trying to make it profitable like WotC did...

well, paizo didnt have to buy d&d, they just renamed it "pathfinder" and seem to be doing ok. but i think, at least from the 3x players perspective, paizo has already built their reputation for open mindedness and fan friendliness through their efforts when they had dragon and dungeon. i think those issues were the best in the franchise since the kim mohan days. and the way they went about releasing pathfinder, in alpha form, and completely open to fan feedback, won them some trust and respect points as well.

but, you're right. if they DID get the rights to the D&D name and started acting like their litter box didnt stink, they would have to deal with the backlash just like TSR post gygax and WotC did...