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Insert foot in mouth, then shoot

NERD ALERT - skip this post if you don't give a crap about RPGs

A while back, mordicai and I had a back-and-forth about RPG PDF vs. hard copies. I complained that WOTC ripped people poff by overpricing their PDF's. Looks like they have now completely banned the sale of PDFs, citing piracy as their main reason for doing so.

I find this pretty hysterical.

I had the 4E books two weeks before you could buy a hard copy. The PDF's are why I canceled my pre-orders. They had printers marks on them - they were not post-sale copies, they were clearly leaked from the printer/publisher, or someone with access to pre-bound copy. They say they are going to sue file-sharers. I'm sure that will recover their lost sales dollars.

Digital assets for my RPG material is a must-have. Period. If you eliminate my legitimate distribution options, where am I going to turn?

I know I'm not the only one who feels this way. I wonder how much _more_ business WOTC will lose, as a result of this move, considering they had fairly appreciable sales of legitimate PDFs through several of their until-recently-partner distribution bushinesses.

I'm so glad I walked away from them after 3.5. I can only hope this boosts sales of Pathfinder.


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 8th, 2009 03:46 pm (UTC)
1) WotC have been treating their "supporters" with much less respect than most of the previous gaming companies have. M:TG pissed me off immensely, and the release of D&D 4.0 convinced me that their only interest was to milk us of our cash, with minimal concern for actually producing quality products. I was ok with the 3.x revisions, and I could live with the constant barrage of supplementary books, because at least it was new stuff they were releasing (although, frankly, those books were all overpriced for what they were). 4.0, though, was a slap in the face to anyone that had actually gone out and legitimately procured copies of all the 3.x material. It's insulting at best.

2) I read through a bunch of the RPG notes you tossed my way. I gotta tell you, you're further along than I was with mine, and pretty much running on an opposing philosophy than what I was building on, so I don't think I have any ideas that are compatible. But if you ever get to play testing, GIVE ME A FUCKING CALL. I am jonesing for a good game.

3) Have you any experience with Mutants and Mayhem? I've decided the d20 system does enough of what I want a system to do that I don't want to abandon it, but I have VOLUMES of superhero stuff for Palladium that I'd like to translate over to d20. That's going to take an assload of work, and I was hoping one of the d20 superhero games would work as a base. I've heard good and bad from the 2 major contenders out there, but M&M seems to have a bit more of what I want to do than the other one (whose name escapes me at the moment), so I figure I'll start there. My collection of unused RPG books is growing, however, so I don't want to add another one of those to the pile, and although it's just one book, I don't to take the financial hit needlessly. Costumer reviews run both sides of the fence, but I've gamed with you enough to get a sense of your style and outlook, so I'd be interested in your opinion specifically, if you had one.

Apr. 8th, 2009 04:23 pm (UTC)
Mutants and Mayhem should me Migraines and Mayhem
I had a lot of fun with character creation - past that, it didn't scale well. I ended up hose-ruling more than 50% of it.

TSR lost their audience because they stopped listneing to their customers. For the most part, that was one of the good things early on in the WoTC aquisition, but, since late 3.5, it has pretty much gone back to what things were with TSR in the hyeday.

I'll def get you in on a playtest schedule.
Apr. 8th, 2009 04:30 pm (UTC)
Re: Mutants and Mayhem should me Migraines and Mayhem
You know, I don't mind completely house-ruling a game, if the raw base of it is workable. Porting over all of my Palladium stuff to a custom build system is daunting, however. I have d20 Modern, it has really odd character gen rules, so I can't really use that. I sat around trying to figure out powers; would they be skills? feats?

What I REALLY want is to have my Palladium stuff built on a relatively simple character gen system, which the d20 system offers (over Palladium). I hear raves for the Champions system, but I remember not liking the combat system when I first looked at it. I'll have to take a peek again.

mmmmm playtest.

Apr. 8th, 2009 05:28 pm (UTC)
rocket propelled grenades?
Apr. 8th, 2009 05:30 pm (UTC)
randy pornographic gerbils
role playing games
Apr. 8th, 2009 05:31 pm (UTC)
regular green penises!!
Apr. 8th, 2009 05:34 pm (UTC)
as opposed to irregular green penises?
you need to stop hanging out with the "jolly" green giant
Apr. 8th, 2009 05:35 pm (UTC)
oh baby i like it raw
and yes i'm talking about brussel sprouts
Apr. 8th, 2009 05:37 pm (UTC)
you are missing out
they are way better with creme sauce
Apr. 8th, 2009 05:38 pm (UTC)
i bet
that's what she says
Apr. 8th, 2009 05:43 pm (UTC)
Re: i bet
Jul. 31st, 2010 07:06 pm (UTC)
Wait hold on-- look at me, late to the party!-- but you are saying their concerns on the subject of piracy aren't valid...but you canceled orders because of pirated copies? That anecdotal argument would seem to support them!

Anyhow White Wolf would seem to be going the opposite way: all pdfs. I am sad.
Aug. 1st, 2010 02:30 am (UTC)
different reasons, same end result
Wotc is making crap, which is why I canceled. I'm a Paizo subscriber, and buy pdfs and hard copies faithfully - if they moved to just pdfs, I'd get those. Paizo did a great job finishing/reworking 3.5, and the quality of their work is primo.

WOTC's stance is that if people get a pirated copy, they won't pay for the content, because they don't need to. I'm saying I wouldn't pay, because I didn't want it.

It is no different than me going to a game store, flipping through the book, saying "well, that is shit" and cancelling my preorder.

I think that any gaming house is going to have to go this way to make it work. The overhead on big hardbound colorbooks is way too much. They can make primary method pdf, and I'm sure someone will aftermarket hardbound copies, for the diehards who need to lug around 40lbs of books instead of a 4oz keydrive.

Not knocking you love of paper, as much as I am saying this is an inevitability of the evolution of how media is consumed. You can't ctl-f a 300+page book. When a rule ref comes up at the table, I have the answer in 10 secs flat, every time, instead of two minutes of index reference and page flipping before I can even start reading.
Aug. 1st, 2010 12:32 pm (UTC)
Re: different reasons, same end result
I definitely agree that Paizo's quality out output is excellent (see also: some reviews) but I don't agree about WotC's product either.

Anyhow, the overhead on pdfs isn't particularly different than that of hardcovers. I think there is a perception of that being the case, because there aren't physical books, but the mark-up for paper isn't as high as some readers & retailers (Amazon) would like to trick you into believing.

I want fully editable files, so I can pull off the spells/powers/feats/merits/whatever that apply to my character & make "Splatbooks" for each PC. That'll be nice.

You can't ctrl-f a 300 page book, but you can go to the index. A lot of times, that is faster than clicking "next" for every mention of the word "elf" when you are trying to find the main entry for elves. You can't stick your finger in a pdf & flip to another page. Oh & more to the point-- at least the way it is looking now-- you can't own a pdf, just "license" it.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )


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