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View Full Version : 4E: Well, Someone's Buying



Glawackus
2008-05-30, 07:29 PM
Linkity link (http://www.icv2.com/articles/news/12654.html)


A WotC spokesperson has informed ICv2 that Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition has already gone back to press more than a week before its scheduled street date next Friday, June 6th. Sell-in of 4th Edition has “far exceeded expectations” and even though the initial print run for 4th Edition was 50% higher than the order for the previous D&D 3.5 Edition, WotC has now realized that it is necessary to go back to press to meet anticipated reorder demand.

*sits back and waits for someone to reveal that this has already been posted a zillion times* :smalltongue:

SamTheCleric
2008-05-30, 07:32 PM
Wow. Well done.

Rutee
2008-05-30, 07:34 PM
That actually makes sense. I recall there being some resistance (At least, locally) to 3.5.. did 3.5 have better advance sales then 3rd ed or something?

Azerian Kelimon
2008-05-30, 07:34 PM
Meh, I don't think this is anything but propaganda. The way I see it, they realized that the master books are online and are going to make erratas and changes for 'em, making the best out of the disaster that the leak was.

Edea
2008-05-30, 07:35 PM
Oh, yeah, a brand new edition is certainly going to do that, with the initial core release. The trick is whether they'll get the same response with next year's rulebooks.

RoboticSheeple
2008-05-30, 07:42 PM
Meh, I don't think this is anything but propaganda. The way I see it, they realized that the master books are online and are going to make erratas and changes for 'em, making the best out of the disaster that the leak was.

That leak doesn't look like a disaster yet with them having to make a second printing before the books are even out. :smallamused:

JaxGaret
2008-05-30, 07:45 PM
How does comparing 4e sales with 3.5e sales mean anything?

The ".5" in 3.5e dashes any credibility this comparison might have.

Azerian Kelimon
2008-05-30, 07:47 PM
That leak doesn't look like a disaster yet with them having to make a second printing before the books are even out. :smallamused:

Who says it is a second print and not a hasty reprint and errataing? The torrent with the books is extremely strong and healthy, and most people will prefer having the master tapes of their favourite album to a common CD. If I were WoTC and Hasbro, I'd use the leak to get some cheap corrections and change broken things, using a smokescreen so as to avoid saying "Dangit, somebody set up us the bomb!".

Of course, this IS WoTC and Hasbro we're talking about, and I believe they don't know what "Internet" means, yet.

Cybren
2008-05-30, 09:15 PM
How does comparing 4e sales with 3.5e sales mean anything?

The ".5" in 3.5e dashes any credibility this comparison might have.

Why? 3.5 was an actual edition change. 4E is more or less a new game.

GryffonDurime
2008-05-30, 10:04 PM
Who says it is a second print and not a hasty reprint and errataing? The torrent with the books is extremely strong and healthy, and most people will prefer having the master tapes of their favourite album to a common CD. If I were WoTC and Hasbro, I'd use the leak to get some cheap corrections and change broken things, using a smokescreen so as to avoid saying "Dangit, somebody set up us the bomb!".

Of course, this IS WoTC and Hasbro we're talking about, and I believe they don't know what "Internet" means, yet.

I sincerely doubt this is a reprint; do you know what kind of a logistical nightmare that would be? The torrent is healthy, yes, but unless the torrent doesn't match the physical books we've seen leaked--and both appear to be cut from the same cloth so far--then the kind of work you're suggesting borders on miraculous.

Reel On, Love
2008-05-30, 10:07 PM
Who says it is a second print and not a hasty reprint and errataing?

{Scrubbed}

Suzuro
2008-05-30, 10:09 PM
Well, considering the people who pre-ordered would get the original books, if they changed them now, they would most likely have a lawsuit on their hands...and nobody wants that, not even the Spanish Inquisition.


-Suzuro

Azerian Kelimon
2008-05-30, 10:11 PM
I sincerely doubt this is a reprint; do you know what kind of a logistical nightmare that would be? The torrent is healthy, yes, but unless the torrent doesn't match the physical books we've seen leaked--and both appear to be cut from the same cloth so far--then the kind of work you're suggesting borders on miraculous.

There's a story in the gaming world about a classic game that had to have EVERY copy replaced with a new, unbugged version, before the launch night, because the already packaged version had a bug that made it unplayable past a certain mission. That game was Myth II, if I remember correctly. It still gave profits, because it was a masterpiece.

Really, I'm not in the printing business, so I don't know how complicated it would be, but most people, if given the option of having the original, free, early version of a game or the payed for, late, mass market version, will opt for the free one. If I were WotC, I'd play it safe, because you never know how many customers you're going to lose from something like the torrent.

GryffonDurime
2008-05-30, 10:17 PM
There's a story in the gaming world about a classic game that had to have EVERY copy replaced with a new, unbugged version, before the launch night, because the already packaged version had a bug that made it unplayable past a certain mission. That game was Myth II, if I remember correctly. It still gave profits, because it was a masterpiece.

Really, I'm not in the printing business, so I don't know how complicated it would be, but most people, if given the option of having the original, free, early version of a game or the payed for, late, mass market version, will opt for the free one. If I were WotC, I'd play it safe, because you never know how many customers you're going to lose from something like the torrent.

The problem with this is that printing anything like this is a ferociously involved sort of process. The torrents started on the 27th, and assuming Wizards' upper brass decided to take on this complete reprint, you're suggesting that in around seven days they will recall, reprint, and reship every copy of their core three books? Not only that, but add in the complication of the complete gift set--combined books always cause shipping problems. As someone who's seen the inner workings of printing on an admittedly smaller scale, what you're asking for is something completely nonsensical.

You want to talk about losing customers? How about losing customers by risking delay and inferior quality control on both content and printing just so you could create artificial differences between the official and linked copies? Like I said, logistical nightmare and there's just no real motivation to do so. I'd put even money that anyone downloading that torrent who was going to buy it is still probably going to buy it.

Azerian Kelimon
2008-05-30, 10:19 PM
{Scrubbed}

Cut the flames. This is why you do a risk assessment. If the situation is dire (For example, the torrent is widely publicized and embraced), you rush and make it void. If it's not so problematic, you just press forward. Simple as that. It's a matter of planning for the worst and hoping for the best.

Ozymandias
2008-05-30, 10:23 PM
Does that happen? Almost everything, everywhere is available through torrents. Fighting it has never worked. Look at Bioshock: thousands spent on elaborate copy-protection to prevent piracy, and it what did it amount to? It took a week to crack instead of a few days.

I mean, all the 3e books are available online with basically no strings attached, but Wizards isn't freaking out and re-releasing everything.

Azerian Kelimon
2008-05-30, 10:29 PM
Does that happen? Almost everything, everywhere is available through torrents. Fighting it has never worked. Look at Bioshock: thousands spent on elaborate copy-protection to prevent piracy, and it what did it amount to? It took a week to crack instead of a few days.

I mean, all the 3e books are available online with basically no strings attached, but Wizards isn't freaking out and re-releasing everything.

Because most torrents are minor. This one has a headstart over the real release, which gives it a pretty significant advantage.

Now, I'm not saying Wizards IS recalling books for printing, I'm just saying that, on a worst case scenario, that's the most sensible thing to do. Remember, plan for the worst, hope for the best, and get something in the middle.

And yes, there IS a precedent of recalls, on the mass scale, so don't tell me it hasn't been done before. It is terribly infrequent, though.

Behold_the_Void
2008-05-30, 10:34 PM
Because most torrents are minor. This one has a headstart over the real release, which gives it a pretty significant advantage.

Now, I'm not saying Wizards IS recalling books for printing, I'm just saying that, on a worst case scenario, that's the most sensible thing to do. Remember, plan for the worst, hope for the best, and get something in the middle.

And yes, there IS a precedent of recalls, on the mass scale, so don't tell me it hasn't been done before. It is terribly infrequent, though.

Highly unlikely in this case though. The game you cited had an actual flaw that made it unplayable, so that was a requisite emergency job that probably still cut deep into their profit margins. In this case, it'd be way more money to do a full reprint than to just accept the losses that the leak cost them and move on.

Ozymandias
2008-05-30, 10:40 PM
I remember the FFXII torrent was out a week or so before the game. Good times.

I don't get how, exactly, recall is the "most sensible thing to do"? It's a large cost expenditure (reprints, lawsuits, lost deals, etc) and a massive loss of face, especially considering that the leak was likely from an insider. And what do they gain, exactly? They can't feasibly alter a system noticeably in such a short time, and even if they were to it would just be rescanned and re-uploaded by a day or so after the new release. People who torrent it now are going to torrent it again, not buy a new version. I think the subset of players who would have bought it (not torrented it) after release, but are torrenting it now because it's available and will not buy a hard copy is small enough to be negligible.

Tough_Tonka
2008-05-30, 10:56 PM
Part of me wonders how much of an accident this leak was. WoTC had to know a copy was going to get out sooner or later, maybe not the same quality but still. These book leaks and scattered early releases have caused a lot of hype and brought to good deal about the new rules to light.

I mean most of the strong opinions of the people on the forums haven't changed much due to these books being released. The people who called 4e WoW lite still hate it and the people defending resting rules are still going to buy it. However, most of the people who got the books early or went out of the way to download the books are probably of the later category. So now the die hard followers seem more credible than the cynics since more of them actually have the books for reference.

Of course I could easily be over thinking this situation.

Azerian Kelimon
2008-05-30, 11:05 PM
Now, that is an interesting idea. What was that phrase, there is no such thing as bad publicity? Leaking the books WOULD give them publicity, but we are dealing with WotC here, the same guys that brought us such disasters as Gleemax. It could go either way, frankly.

Farmer42
2008-05-30, 11:10 PM
Well, leaks like this are actually par for the course in business and political arenas. We'll get leaks about a major pending decision. So WotC might have done this on purpose.

Azerian Kelimon
2008-05-30, 11:13 PM
Well, leaks like this are actually par for the course in business and political arenas. We'll get leaks about a major pending decision. So WotC might have done this on purpose.

Good point. In fact, they might have done this not only for the hype, but to keep the fans cool about pushing the release back.

Of course, that MIGHT be too much planning for WotC.

Farmer42
2008-05-30, 11:19 PM
Why would they push the release back? I've seen what they consider good enough to publish (check out Threats of the Galaxy for SAGA) and I have a fairly good idea :smallwink: that 4E isn't nearly as error ridden as that book.

JaxGaret
2008-05-30, 11:46 PM
Why would they push the release back?

They already pushed the release back so that all three books could be released at the same time. Originally, the first book was slated to be released about a month ago, if not sooner.

Farmer42
2008-05-30, 11:56 PM
Well, yes, but it wasn't a major pushback, and why would they need to try and make ammends with the community for that now? It was pretty much universally welcomed when they pushed the release back. It was on a couple of weeks, and the other books got pushed up a bunch, months in one case.

JaxGaret
2008-05-31, 12:12 AM
Well, yes, but it wasn't a major pushback, and why would they need to try and make ammends with the community for that now? It was pretty much universally welcomed when they pushed the release back. It was on a couple of weeks, and the other books got pushed up a bunch, months in one case.

There wasn't any judgment included in my statement, only fact. You asked, and I answered.

Perhaps you are addressing your questions here to Azerian?

Farmer42
2008-05-31, 12:13 AM
Yeah, that was directed at him, not you. Sorry for the miscommunication. I was just confused by his statement is all.

Cuddly
2008-05-31, 12:14 AM
Of course, this IS WoTC and Hasbro we're talking about, and I believe they don't know what "Internet" means, yet.

Actually, they do, and they've pandered pretty ****ing hard to it.


I wonder when they'll release the first splatbook.

JaxGaret
2008-05-31, 12:45 AM
I wonder when they'll release the first splatbook.

Adventurer's Vault and the FRPG drop in September, Martial Power drops in October, Draconomicon I drops in November, Manual of the Planes drops in December, Open Grave: Secrets of the Undead drops in January 09.

For DMs, FRCG comes out in August, and then there are both the default setting campaign modules and the FR campaign modules.

Sarastro
2008-05-31, 04:48 AM
I wasn't originally going to buy the 4e books but when I found some Barnes and Noble coupons, I bought them. The only supplement I'm looking forward to is the one that includes the Swordmage class. Should be a fun class. . .

Matthew
2008-05-31, 05:12 AM
From what I understand, the 3.0 core books massively outsold the 3.5 core rulebooks. It is interesting that they are not comparing the sales to 3.0, but I think the original print run for 3e was quite small.

nagora
2008-05-31, 05:22 AM
These pre-sales to shops are probably mostly sale-or-return, so they're meaningless until we know the return rate, which Hasbro will probably never release. Having said that, I'd expect the first run of 4ed to sell out no matter how good or bad it was.

Re-orders from shops are far more significent, once word-of-mouth starts to kick in.

Tura
2008-05-31, 05:36 AM
This is the grossest misconception since the invention of the internet:
"Every downloaded copy, legal or illegal, is one sold book less."

This is simply not true. Yes, there are people who prefer settling with the free download than going out and buying the thing. There are also people who download it to get the information early, and then go get a hard copy - because it is a nice book, with nice colors, which they can caress and read in bed and throw on the table when playing, instead of mucking about with laptops. And, more importantly, there are people who wouldn't bother with the new edition at all, until they miraculously have it right there in their hard disks, and therefore try it, and therefore go buy the book in order to play with their friends - if they like it, of course.

Here, check this out. These guys give away their books online (http://www.wumingfoundation.com/italiano/downloads.shtml) under a Creative Commons license, and then print them. And you know what? People still buy them. I liked one of their books so much, that I bought it 3 times as a gift for friends. And if they hadn't given it away online, I'd probably have never even read it in the first place.

Now, I'm not saying that this method works with everything, it depends on a lot of things. But it can be done, and it's wrong to say that a leak equals loss no matter what.
(For a solid reasoning with simple words, see here, bottom of the page: Google Print and the like: the web, freebies and rearguard action. (http://www.wumingfoundation.com/italiano/outtakes/copyleft_en.htm))

Sarastro
2008-05-31, 05:43 AM
This is the grossest misconception since the invention of the internet:
"Every downloaded copy, legal or illegal, is one sold book less."

This is simply not true. Yes, there are people who prefer settling with the free download than going out and buying the thing. There are also people who download it to get the information early, and then go get a hard copy - because it is a nice book, with nice colors, which they can caress and read in bed and throw on the table when playing, instead of mucking about with laptops. And, more importantly, there are people who wouldn't bother with the new edition at all, until they miraculously have it right there in their hard disks, and therefore try it, and therefore go buy the book in order to play with their friends - if they like it, of course.

A good point to be made. I'm just such a person. I got a pdf of the Spycraft rulebook but when I got around to running a campaign of it, I decided I really wanted the book for the sake of convenience. Books beat e-copies any day of the week.

Kurald Galain
2008-05-31, 07:13 AM
Meh, I don't think this is anything but propaganda.

Agreed. Every company says they're doing great - heck, Microsoft says Vista sales are excellent, whereas every company that keeps track of the marketplace says they're poor.

Nevertheless, I have no doubt that 4E will sell well.

RukiTanuki
2008-06-02, 06:10 PM
Well, there's two parts to Vista sales:
1) It's nigh-impossible to get a new PC with XP anymore, so by default they get to include virtually all new system sales.
2) On the rare chances that the consumer is given the option to "downgrade" and purchase their system with XP (Dell's running this program, I believe), Microsoft is still putting that system sale down on their books as a Vista license.


More on topic, however: I've had similar talks lately regarding PC games, PC game piracy, and notably, DRM antimeasures that (as noted in this thread) inconvenience the legit customer while putting nary a dent in the availability of pirated copies. The short version: the numbers on piracy are baloney if you're not tracking:
* illegal copies that would be purchased if piracy didn't exist
* illegal copies that would NOT be purchased if piracy didn't exist (i.e. the customer would never buy the product)
* copies purchased that would NOT have been purchased if piracy didn't exist (the customer tried then bought)
* sales lost to anti-piracy-countermeasures (i.e. a copy would have been purchased if the customer did not have to cope with the inconvenience of, say, DRM)

No one presents stats on piracy to this detail. Indeed, since piracy numbers vary by orders of magnitude anyway, it's questionable whether any quoted numbers are reasonable. In all cases, it's clear that the efforts spent trying to reduce piracy have few results.

This, in turn, presents my core point: If that effort was instead spent on ensuring that the company is providing a product/service that people want to pay money for, sale would increase relative to the current model. Best of all, we'd all get a better product. It works, and people are doing it, from music band releases, to bakeries using the honor system.

Kiero
2008-06-03, 04:59 AM
Going back to the press means success at the wholesale level, not retail. People who want to sell the book have bought large quantities, but that isn't the same thing as people (ie final consumers) actually buying it. Some of that may be pre-orders and the like and thus translate directly into actual sales, but not all of it.

ghost_warlock
2008-06-03, 05:14 AM
This is the grossest misconception since the invention of the internet:
"Every downloaded copy, legal or illegal, is one sold book less."

This is simply not true. Yes, there are people who prefer settling with the free download than going out and buying the thing. There are also people who download it to get the information early, and then go get a hard copy - because it is a nice book, with nice colors, which they can caress and read in bed and throw on the table when playing, instead of mucking about with laptops. And, more importantly, there are people who wouldn't bother with the new edition at all, until they miraculously have it right there in their hard disks, and therefore try it, and therefore go buy the book in order to play with their friends - if they like it, of course.

I own an electronic, and a hard-copy, of nearly every WotC 3.x book. I got the hard copies first, for use while actually playing, and then picked up the electronic versions free from a friend later for easy reference. (I'm not sure if I did this illegally - I paid for the hard-copy so I figure that should include an e-copy in the license.) The bookshelf I keep all my books on is clear on the other side of the room from my computer desk and if I didn't have electronic versions I'd have to constantly be running back and forth to grab a book I forgot the first time and I'd end up tripping over stacks of books by my desk.

I really think all hardcover gaming supplements should come with a CD in the back cover (like the 3.0 PHB) that includes a .pdf of the book.

Person_Man
2008-06-03, 09:38 AM
Does anyone have sales statistics on the various editions? It would be interesting to compare.

Indon
2008-06-03, 09:49 AM
Now, that is an interesting idea. What was that phrase, there is no such thing as bad publicity? Leaking the books WOULD give them publicity, but we are dealing with WotC here, the same guys that brought us such disasters as Gleemax. It could go either way, frankly.

I don't think the leak is a publicity stunt.

I think it's a public beta.

Wizards released the books to the public so that they could gauge public reaction, and now they're making changes as appropriate.

AKA_Bait
2008-06-03, 11:06 AM
I don't think the leak is a publicity stunt.

I think it's a public beta.

Wizards released the books to the public so that they could gauge public reaction, and now they're making changes as appropriate.

So, you think they charged us for the fluff previews and then freely released the core mechanics to gage reaction? That seems a bit... unusual to me.

Indon
2008-06-03, 11:52 AM
So, you think they charged us for the fluff previews and then freely released the core mechanics to gage reaction? That seems a bit... unusual to me.

Not just reaction - breakability. And breakability testing requires more people than you're likely to get by releasing paid previews, and more information than would be released in snippets.

Kurald Galain
2008-06-03, 11:58 AM
Wizards released the books to the public so that they could gauge public reaction, and now they're making changes as appropriate.

While that's a fun idea, it doesn't actually work at all if you consider the amount of time it takes to print and distribute all the source books.

bosssmiley
2008-06-03, 12:04 PM
Adventurer's Vault and the FRPG drop in September, Martial Power drops in October, Draconomicon I drops in November, Manual of the Planes drops in December, Open Grave: Secrets of the Undead drops in January 09.

'Drop'? :smallconfused:

ZOMG 4E R MOREPIGS!!! :smallbiggrin:

Seriously, cheers for the dates.
Might get the FRCS...or I might just dig out my old copies of Mystara and Birthright. Take that (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/TakeThat) Rich Baker! :smalltongue:


Not just reaction - breakability. And breakability testing requires more people than you're likely to get by releasing paid previews, and more information than would be released in snippets.

To test for breakability you playtest. Cherrypick people from the WOTC's own Character Optimisation boards, get them to sign non-disclosure agreements, then give them beta copies of the 4th Ed. rules to play with.
Offer a nominal cash bonus per loophole or exploit spotted and a playtester/troubleshooter credit in the published volume.
Then listen to their feedback.

It's not rocket surgery. :smallannoyed:

The printer leak smells of simple ****-up (or possibly 'information must be free' in action), rather than cunning business plan conspiracy.

TSGames
2008-06-03, 12:08 PM
This could also explain why piracy is on the rise. Simple fact is: the more people you have buying a product, the more people you have pirate that product. But who knew that 4E would be so popular? I blame WOW.

Dark Tira
2008-06-03, 12:10 PM
This could also explain why piracy is on the rise. Simple fact is: the more people you have buying a product, the more people you have pirate that product. But who knew that 4E would be so popular? I blame WOW.
I also blame WoW for increased Piracy and Global Warming.

Indon
2008-06-03, 12:13 PM
While that's a fun idea, it doesn't actually work at all if you consider the amount of time it takes to print and distribute all the source books.

While many have accused Wizard of clever ideas, not so many have claimed they are consistently good at executing them.

Matthew
2008-06-03, 01:16 PM
Here are somethoughts from James Mishler (http://jamesmishler.blogspot.com/2008/05/deconstructing-4e-sales.html) ("The Main Man at Adventure Games Publishing (http://www.adventuregamespubs.com/)", which to you and me is essentially the Wilderlands of High Adventure, I think) on the subject of 4e sales:



Deconstructing 4E Sales
ICv2 has a bit about Wizards of the Coast going back to press on the 4E Dungeons & Dragons books. This sounds very impressive, but I gotta say... not really.

The major item of note is how the Wizards spokesperson mentions to ICv2 that "the initial print run for 4E was 50% higher than the order for the previous D&D 3.5 Edition."

First of all, what exactly does Wizards mean by order? Do they mean that the pre-order numbers of the three core 4E books were 50% higher than the pre-order numbers of the three core 3.5E books released in 2003? If so, that's not good, not good at all. At least, compared to historical D&D sales. If the pre-order numbers were really good, they would be compared to the pre-order numbers of the three core 3E books released in August, September, and October of 2000. Those numbers were phenomenal.

If, on the other hand, the Wizards spokesperson means that the pre-orders of 4E were 50% higher than the overall total sales of the three core 3.5E books, then that might not be so bad. But I seriously doubt that he's mixing his numbers this way, as that would be deceptive, comparing apples and apricots.

If there were any percentage in it, I would dig through my old issues of Comics & Games Retailer and dredge up the sales figures on 3E vs. 3.5E and show you what I mean. But there's really no percentage in it save to say that the three core books of 3E seriously outsold 3.5E in both the mass and the hobby, even though 3.5E sales ran longer (mid 2003 to ongoing as compared to mid 2000 to mid 2003).

So really, it's just the usual sales, marketing, and PR shenanigans. Still, I will say that for the adventure game industry, the sales are off the charts as compared to anything else in the role playing game market. That is, truly, something to crow about.

ghost_warlock
2008-06-03, 01:27 PM
...or I might just dig out my old copies of Mystara

Please let me know if you do, Mystara is the setting I cut my D&D teeth on and it'd be nice to see a PbP revival...even if I can't remember jack-all about the setting other than a bit of name dropping (Glantri, Karameikos, Darokin :smalltongue:).

I think I have most of the OD&D material as .pdfs, though... :smallsmile:

Rutee
2008-06-03, 01:29 PM
I don't think the leak is a publicity stunt.

I think it's a public beta.

Wizards released the books to the public so that they could gauge public reaction, and now they're making changes as appropriate.

Those were the master copies the Publishers used. I have a friend who runs a store. He got physical copies of the book 2 days after the PDF Leak. That was not intentional.

Azerian Kelimon
2008-06-03, 01:36 PM
Please let me know if you do, Mystara is the setting I cut my D&D teeth on and it'd be nice to see a PbP revival...even if I can't remember jack-all about the setting other than a bit of name dropping (Glantri, Karameikos, Darokin :smalltongue:).

I think I have most of the OD&D material as .pdfs, though... :smallsmile:

Ooh...To be a knight of the Three suns Castle again...Now THAT would be nice.

AKA_Bait
2008-06-03, 01:38 PM
Those were the master copies the Publishers used. I have a friend who runs a store. He got physical copies of the book 2 days after the PDF Leak. That was not intentional.

Yep. Master copies don't get leaked intentionally, they would have cleaned it up first.

Besides, if what they wanted was a public beta, why oh why would they just not post it on the WotC site rather than having their 'test group' need to pirate the document and certianly not report directly back to them?

ghost_warlock
2008-06-03, 01:46 PM
Ooh...To be a knight of the Three suns Castle again...Now THAT would be nice.

Or to be a lowly half-elven druid/wizard who got kicked out of the wizard academy in Glantri and exiled for daring to worship the Immortals.

Incidentally, that character was my first to ever develop his own overpowered homebrew spell... :smalltongue:

Matthew
2008-06-03, 02:08 PM
Please let me know if you do, Mystara is the setting I cut my D&D teeth on and it'd be nice to see a PbP revival...even if I can't remember jack-all about the setting other than a bit of name dropping (Glantri, Karameikos, Darokin :smalltongue:).

I think I have most of the OD&D material as .pdfs, though... :smallsmile:

I noticed a couple of days back that Jolly_Steve successfully recruited (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=78596) for a Labyrinth Lord game, which appears to be going great guns (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=79208&page=10). Not sure where it's set, though...

nagora
2008-06-03, 02:16 PM
Does anyone have sales statistics on the various editions? It would be interesting to compare.

WotC are fairly secretive about this, but they did a survey when 3E was yet to change to 3.5e and found 3.5 million players in North America. A similar survey in 1983 found about 5.5 million players of 1ed. The change to 2ed dropped about 50% of sales, which clearly built up again after 3ed, and the change to 3.5ed apparently lost some again but it's not clear how many.

Mark Hall
2008-06-03, 09:00 PM
As I posted elsewhere...

How many were in the first print run? (http://www.vgcats.com/comics/?strip_id=212)

Matthew
2008-06-09, 05:46 PM
I recently had an exchange with one of the Wizards of the Coast's R&D Developers (Stephen Radney-MacFarland) over on EnWorld as to print runs: Link (http://www.enworld.org/showthread.php?t=229730&page=3).



Mearls didn't talk to someone in the know...he looked at the sales numbers. The same sales numbers I looked at.



Thanks for taking the time to address this, Stephen. The question was not one of total sales numbers, but of print runs. I can believe that 4e had a larger initial print run than 3.5, the question was whether 3.5 had a larger initial print run than 3.0. If you are saying that the sales numbers contain that information and confirming that it indeed did, then thank you for doing so.



We are not blowing smoke up anyone's 'you know what' here. I realize there are a number of folks who haven't seen the actual numbers (or at least not in a good long time) who've postulated that 3.5 could not have outsold 3.0. And I guess you can put me in the ranks of fool, but I for one will take a posteriori knowledge over a priori knowledge any day...at least when it comes to sales numbers.



So, can you tell us what the sales numbers actually were/are? How many 3.0 PHB/DMG/MM were in total printed and sold versus 3.5? How many 4.0 PHB/DMG/MM have been printed and sold so far? How does this compare to 1.0 total sales of the PHB/DMG/MM? Is this information available freely somewhere?

To be clear, I am not questioning your integrity, it's just that inquiring minds want to know, and when specific information is withheld regarding sales, but vague hints are dropped, then those minds are prone to drawing whatever conclusions seem probable or, indeed, possible, given the information and speculation.



The number I've seen was about copies sold, not revenue taken in. I can only assume that the print runs were larger as well, or we wouldn't have had that many copies to sell.



Thank you for clarifying.



Many inquiring minds want to know this sort of information...fans, competitors, Wall Street, sometimes all three wrapped up in a one-person package. This is why publicly traded companies release quarterly results and their foot soldiers talk in generals about such things. Spilling spreadsheets, very specific numbers, and such is a good way to turn in your letter of resignation when you are working in a publicly traded company.



Absolutely, that is business, and when money is involved there is speculation about the meaning of press releases.



As far as people drawing their own conclusions...I can't stop that from happening. I also can't make you believe me. But you should. Because anyone who knows me can tell you that I don't spread manure...I'm just plain bad at it.



Hey, if I believe David "Zeb" Cook when he says that Drizzt was not (http://www.dragonsfoot.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=26912&st=0&sk=t&sd=a&start=120) the inspiration for introducing fighting with two weapons as an ability of the ranger class in AD&D 2e, I can believe you when you say that your analysis of sales data indicates that the 4.0e initial print run is larger than the 3.5e initial print run, which was larger than the initial 3.0e print run (and thus that 4.0e has sold to distributors more initial print run copies than either 3.0e or 3.5e did). ;)