Designers - Make 5e a product that lasts! Address fundamental required changes!

For 5e to be a significant success it needs to recapture the players it has lost to Pathfinder.  (I grimace when I say this as I am a huge supporter of Pathfinder).  5e will likely be a success regardless of what direction they choose, but in order to build longetivity into the new system, it really needs to be a "significant success".  In order to be a significant success, they need to address some key fundamental rules changes.

There were a few fundamental changes that Pathfinder made to the d20 ruleset which were greatly needed.

One of these fundamental changes was the change of the Hit Dice used for classes.  (i.e. d4 HD's were scrapped, and increased to d6, such as the Wizard).  Classes that had a martial component but were not "front-line" fighting characters had their HD increased to d8, such as rogues and monks.

This was a needed change!  This was a fundamental change!

If the 5e designers are unable to identify and address fundamental changes (or unwilling), such as the HD increases for certain classes, then I have ZERO faith that 5e will ever become a "significant success".  We as the players should not even have to point out the need to address and change fundamental aspects -- the designers should be able to use their knowledge and experience to identify these fundamental aspects and implement the change.

The 5e designers have made some great progress and I already believe the product will have a better run than 4e (however most of us knew that after seeing the 4e ruleset that it did not have a long life in it).  I want 5e to have a long and prosperous run, so I greatly encourage the designers to pay more attention to the comments in this forum and address all areas which players identify as fundamental changes needed, such as class HD.  Quite frankly, if fundamental changes such as class HD are not addressed in the final product, I will not be supporting the product.






For 5e to be a significant success it needs to recapture the players it has lost to Pathfinder....



I disagree with your initial premise.

At this point, the world being what it is, and gaming in any form gaining wider and wider acceptance, the initial potential market for DDN is, effectively, the entire population.  Of that, the few who currently play *any* edition of D&D, Pathfinder, or other RPGs is a nearly insignificant fragment compared to the potential of pulling in new players who have not previously played.  What's more, of those who already play 4e, Pathfinder, ODD, or what have you, only some percentage (half?  Fewer?) will switch to DDN, no matter what DDN does.

Therefore the design and marketing emphasis must be on these new potential players, not the older orders.  I think WotC has already grasped that truism in what we've seen of their marketing of DDN (reaching out to non-gamer publications like Time, Forbes, and the Wall Street Journal, for example).  If I were chief of marketing at WotC, my aim would not to be to get back the players who jumped ship.  My goal would be to get listed in the Christmas 2013 edition of the Dr. Toy Best Toys of the Year list, and the buying guide for Parents magazine.  I wouldn't be worrying about advertising aimed at Paizo patrons.  I'd be flooding the airwaves of Nickelodeon and the Disney Channel.


Given this, my sole question when I look at any proposed mechanic is: will it potentially pull in, or alienate, a random twelve-year-old consumer who has never played a TT RPG before?  That's the only concern which matters.

      
Thank you for your input orclord.

I think this was mentioned in a previous article mr Mearls wrote as well, so such a change is very likely to happen.

Please do keep in mind whatever our differences, whatever our preferances we are reading and posting here for one simple reason. We want this edition to be a success. Thats why we are trying so hard however awkward that may seem.

I strongly believe that if someone came here and somehow knew that if we make these changes next will be a great success, I have no doubt in my mind 90% of all posters here would wave their arguments away and be up for it (10% would be happy with just one inclusive module).

Something to keep in mind thats all. Keep it up and share your experiences with us. Smile
First of all, I'm sure there will be a module for modifying HD to suit playstyles of the group, second of all, I really think your overstating the importance of that one issue.

I think professordaddy has the right idea, if you want somebody to play your TTRPG, why not get people who have never tried it or arent settled with a choice rather than a demographic who are for the most part happy with what they have. And imho that is the smartest option because if 5e is the success im praying for, it will be easier to get groups together and THAT will be a huge pull for players from other games as gathering a group can be one of the most problematic areas.
For 5e to be a significant success it needs to recapture the players it has lost to Pathfinder....



I disagree with your initial premise.

At this point, the world being what it is, and gaming in any form gaining wider and wider acceptance, the initial potential market for DDN is, effectively, the entire population.  Of that, the few who currently play *any* edition of D&D, Pathfinder, or other RPGs is a nearly insignificant fragment compared to the potential of pulling in new players who have not previously played.  What's more, of those who already play 4e, Pathfinder, ODD, or what have you, only some percentage (half?  Fewer?) will switch to DDN, no matter what DDN does.

Therefore the design and marketing emphasis must be on these new potential players, not the older orders.  I think WotC has already grasped that truism in what we've seen of their marketing of DDN (reaching out to non-gamer publications like Time, Forbes, and the Wall Street Journal, for example).  If I were chief of marketing at WotC, my aim would not to be to get back the players who jumped ship.  My goal would be to get listed in the Christmas 2013 edition of the Dr. Toy Best Toys of the Year list, and the buying guide for Parents magazine.  I wouldn't be worrying about advertising aimed at Paizo patrons.  I'd be flooding the airwaves of Nickelodeon and the Disney Channel.


Given this, my sole question when I look at any proposed mechanic is: will it potentially pull in, or alienate, a random twelve-year-old consumer who has never played a TT RPG before?  That's the only concern which matters.

      



I mostly agree with your point here. Without trying to expand the community, any future editions, no matter how brilliant they are, will eventually fall. WotC needs to not only support new players and current ones, but try to rope in lapsed players as well. If Hasbro really wants this to succeed, WotC needs to be given sufficient capital in order to run an effective marketing strategy. I haven't personally seen a D&D commercial on television since the early 1980s, and have never seen D&D print advertising that wasn't in a gaming/video gaming magazine. It's simple, if the public doesn't know your product exists, it eventually won't.

Just roll some dice.

 

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First of all, I'm sure there will be a module for modifying HD to suit playstyles of the group, second of all, I really think your overstating the importance of that one issue.

Nod.  Pathfinder changed all classes to have either d6, d8 or d10 hd?  An average of 3.5, 4.5, of 5.5 hit points per level.  And that's a revolutionary, fundamental, necessary change that Pathfinder made?

Of course, 4e had already changed classes to all get 4, 5 or 6 hps per level.  

That 0.5 hp/level difference sums up the vast gulf between 3.5/Pathfinder and 4e, that made the one a wonderous success and holy grail of RPGs and the other a dismal failure?

Wow.

I think professordaddy has the right idea, if you want somebody to play your TTRPG, why not get people who have never tried it or arent settled with a choice rather than a demographic who are for the most part happy with what they have. And imho that is the smartest option because if 5e is the success im praying for, it will be easier to get groups together and THAT will be a huge pull for players from other games as gathering a group can be one of the most problematic areas.

5e, though, is shaping up to be singularly un-suited to the new gamer.  It's trying very hard to appeal to, or at least placate, some 5 or more factions of a fractious player base that's mostly over-40.  Some of us may tell ourselves that replicating the exact same experience that got us hooked on D&D in the 70s or 80s - when TV was 3 network affiliates & a local UHF station or two that you tuned in with an antenna, video games were Pong and Asteroids, Ray Harryhausen and Star Wars represented the height of special effects and the internet was for military use - is going to hook kids who watch Avatar on demand and play MMOs.  But it's just not a realistic expectation, and it's not what 5e is going for.  5e is going to replicate that experience that got you hooked the first time to get you to buy one more set of books, and if they have their druthers, put Paizo back in their (2nd) place.

OrcLord's right about that.  5e is a reaction to the success of Pathfinder, and it's goal is to re-capture 3.5 fans and thus kill Pathfinder.  Kill it with kindness, but still kill it, take its revenue, and ask how many exp it was worth.  



5e really needs something like Wrecan's SARN-FU to support "Theatre of the Mind."

"You want The Tooth?  You can't handle The Tooth!"  - Dahlver-Nar.

"If magic is unrestrained in the campaign, D&D quickly degenerates into a weird wizard show where players get bored quickly"  - E. Gary Gygax

 

 

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I can't say I've ever met anyone who left 3E to go play Pathfinder over a small increase in hit dice. That's the sort of thing that most DM's who are bothered by it would implement on their own, without having to shell out yet more money just to see it in print. Most of the people I know who play Pathfinder right now played 3E for years, did not want to play 4th for various reasons, but enjoyed the thought of playing 3E with a few tweaks to give them the illusion of playing a new editon of D&D.

I give the 5E team huge props for trying to come up with a game that tries to appeal to everyone, and still maintain that old style D&D style that I grew up with. The beauty of the modular approach is that it recognizes the truth; there is no such thing as "standard" D&D. Virtually every group I've sat in on has done something differently, changed some rules, or in some cases thrown out entire sections of rules and created their own. I expect that there will be some things in the final draft that I won't like. There are things in the packet right now I'm not a fan of. For the most part, among my players I've heard nothing but praise for 5E. I really do think it's going to succeed in bridging alot of player gaps, and bringing in both old and new players to the game.
Alright, lets go back in time for a moment. The launch of 4th edition. This was a big day for the folks at wotc and paizo. What essentially happened was for numerous reasons a large portion of the fan base did not like 4th edition. These reasons are varied and likely complex, and the reasons themselves unimportant for the discussion at hand. Fact is they didn't like it. You can also debate on what would have happened if paizo didn't start pathfinder. I think these people would have still not have adopted 4th edition, but that doesn't really matter either.

Now 4th edition comes out and it appeals to new players. In fact it seems to me that most people who have never played D&D before liked 4th edition, and I think it got a lot of people into d&d that hadn't played before. Probelm? Huge problem actually. Those previous players of D&D didn't like 4th edition. They didn't like 4th edition so much that a second tier (possibly lower) game company actually produced a "reprint" of the wotc 3.5 rulebook with changes and outsold the shiny new offical product.

They outsold 4th edition so much that Paizo became the number one roleplaying game company based on sales of roleplaying products. And 4th edition has ended up as a footnote in history. So bad was this descrepency that wotc made a huge announcement two years in advance. WotC would produce a 5th edition of D&D.

Now, you don't have to be a marketing manager to know how horrible it is to announce two years in advance that you are going to make a new product that replaces your old product is. This is even worse for roleplaying games since the products are assumed to have such long lifespans, and the creation of a new product replaces all the money you spent on your old product. The announcement by WotC essentially says that for the next two years we are not going to make any new D&D Books. Yes, they have a couple of setting books coming out. But the full on production of books has pretty much been put on hold for the next two years. Any smaller company than WotC would go out of business during that time. The loss of money is going to be huge. This is a big deal for any company. This is why such changes to a game system are kept secret until they are nearly completed. Even if you were going to do a playtest, ideally you would stil want as small as a gap as possible between the announcement and release.

My point in bring all this up is that appealing to new palyers over existing players was a huge failure for WotC. Had WotC produced Pathfinder instead of 4th edition, WotC would be doing awesome right now, and there would be no need for a 5th edition. WotC has to make a 5th edition of the game to save their jobs. You can bet Hasbro was not happy when Paizo became number 1...with WotC's old edtion.

While it is a good idea to attempt to appeal to people who aren't using your product already, it is a horrible idea to attempt to appeal to them and toss your current customers off the train. Lots of companies make this mistake, and then they end up going out of business. It is very unlikely that four people are going to get together and decide to try out this new D&D game one of them just heard about. What is likely to happen is that their friend who already plays D&D goes "Hey wanna come learn how to play D&D?" If that friend had instead already been playing Pathfinder or Shadowrun, or Vampire, well he would have gone "Hey wanna come play x other game?" 

Whatever current roleplayers are playing is what stores are going to promote and have in stock. This is important, because the games kept on the shelf of your local store are the ones that people are going to end up picking up and trying out. Wizards tried to get new palyers on board with 4th edition and it failed horribly. They ticked off the old players, and it didn't work out. You have to get current players on board, you absolutely have to get Pathfinder players on board, but you don't have to get Joe who has never played an rpg on board. Trying to make a game that Joe might like to play doesn't mean Joe will every play D&D. He might like it, but if you tick off his four friends who use to play D&D, well odds are that even though Joe likes the new D&D game he will go with his four friends and play Vampire instead.

Now with most game companies it might not be essential to reclaim the Pathfinder players, but since WotC is under Habsro, it is going to be essential to get Pathfinder players on board. Without Pathfinder players you are not going to end up with a significant increase over current 4th eiditon players, and given the current situation, current 4th edition players simply aren't going to cut it. If they were, then WotC would not have announced 5th edition so early (and probably wouldn't even had a playtest -- the playtest itself is a sure sign of how epically 4th edition failed) and 5th edition would be a good long ways down the road.

What is truely sad is that WotC could skip playtesting, forget about 5th edition and reprint the 3.5 rulebooks and make more money then 4th edition would make. Getting the 3.5 and 4th edition players on board is the key to 5th edition's success. Honestly, if you still play 1st edition or 2nd edition exclusively, then I really don't see you coming to 5th. So the key is 3.5 and 4th edition players. People who don't currenlty play D&D may never play D&D and trying to make a game someone will like but never play is a bad idea if you have to alienate the people who already play D&D.

If you alienate the people who currenlty paly D&D WotC may not make the sells to allow Joe to discover D&D and decide he wants to play it. No one might be there to encourage Joe to check out D&D or to show him how to play. Those same people may end up being why Joe never plays D&D. In a lot of ways this happened with 4th edition. The guys who hated 4th encouraged people to play Pathfinder. In fact while I liked 4th edition, the fact that my friends hated 4th resulted in WotC not making a dime from me (besides the corerulebooks). Had they got my friends on board, they would have certainly got more money from them, but also from me. Just because I liked 4th didn't result in any increased revenue for Wizards. Same deal with the guy who has never played an RPG before.                  
The other aspect of course is that wizards needs to stand by their product.

4e isn't selling well to grognards, advertise to new players, don't release a whole new edition which is gonna cost a boat load of mony in lost revenues and risk the same problem happening again.

Does anyone honestly think wizards going for a 6th edition before 2025 would go over well?

Furthermore I wanna know why they don't just release material for multiple editions? I mean seriously? is there anything stopping them from releasing new material for 3.5 and 4e simultanously? 

If I start a game company and produce on version of a game, and then ceate a vastly superior version later that isn't really cross-compatible with the old version is there some sort of Ogre that prevents me from going back and relaesing new material for the old version once in a while?

Yea, sorry NightsLastHero, but your version of events is not quite true. In fact, right up until the last bought of 4e products, 4e either outsold Pathfinder or tied in sales. For the majority of 4e's lifespan it flat out outsold Pathfinder. Pathfinder did not start to outsell 4e until WotC started to release the Essentials product line (designed, in and of itself, to appeal to the sort of older school tastes that Pathfinder appealed to). We know this based on the quarterly rankings released by industry standard magazines. So please, don’t try and tell people that Pathfinder was outselling 4e right out the door, or that 4e was not selling anywhere near as well as Pathfinder was. Neither statement is true.  

4e did not succeed. We know that because they canceled it. But we do not have enough data to know exactly why. What we do know is that Pathfinder did not do anywhere near as well as you are claiming it did. It did not become the major number one seller, right out the door, as you claim it did. In fact, it did not become the number one seller at all until after WotC tried to appeal to its fanbase with a 4e product which turned off a lot of 4e fans; I say that as someone who likes most of the Essentials materials more than what came before.

Quite frankly, WotC is in-between a rock and a hard place. If they turn off enough of the 4e crowd, and lose them to a game like 13th Age, DDN is likely to fail. Too much of the fanbase really liked 4e for that fanbase to be casually tossed aside. But, the exact same thing can be said to be true of the 3.xE fanbase. In fact, 4e failed because it alienated too many players. Which is why DDN is trying to be everything to everyone. Personally, I hope it succeeds, because I like what I am seeing so far. I had some major problems with 4e and 3e (and disliked Pathfinder enough that I never bought into it at all). But WotC has a hard task ahead of it. They need to walk a tightrope in order to try and keep the largest portion of every existing D&D fanbase. In the process, we can still expect a number of fans from every fanbase to end up being alienated. 

The other aspect of course is that wizards needs to stand by their product.

4e isn't selling well to grognards, advertise to new players, don't release a whole new edition which is gonna cost a boat load of mony in lost revenues and risk the same problem from happening again.

Does anyone honestly think wizards going for a 6th edition before 2025 would go over well?

Furthermore I wanna know why they don't just release material for multiple editions? I mean seriously? is there anything stopping them from releasing new material for 3.5 and 4e simultanously? 

If I start a game company and produce on version of a game, and then ceate a vastly superior version later that isn't really cross-compatible with the old version is there some sort of Ogre that prevents me from going back and relaesing new material for the old version once in a while?



I believe the ogre's name is Hasbro. Generally speaking it is a bad business move to continue to support an older product while trying to grow its replacement. One of the major challenges is that you would have to hire more people to make both products. In this particular case, I think Wizard's would have noticed 3.5 doing great and 4th edition struggling (which is actually what happened). 4th edition would then have been scraped and the entire company would have continued the 3.5 product line.

So ultimely money would dictate only one edition can be produced at a time. Producing two editions at once will cost you more, but not return enough cash to be worth that extra cost. I will stress this is what conventional wisdom says. in this case, I honestly believe 3.5 would have made Wizards more money then 4th edition, and in this rare case it probably would have been a good idea. But it would have been an idea that would have seen 4th eidtion phased out anyways. 
Why so much that goes wrong with DnD recently trace back to HAsbro?
 
Don't they realize that they bought an RPG company? let them do their damned jobs and take most of the money, you're suits it's all you're good at, don't try to interfere in the affairs of Wizards you elderberry reeking sons of vermin!

Yea, sorry NightsLastHero, but your version of events is not quite true. In fact, right up until the last bought of 4e products, 4e either outsold Pathfinder or tied in sales. For the majority of 4e's lifespan it flat out outsold Pathfinder. Pathfinder did not start to outsell 4e until WotC started to release the Essentials product line (designed, in and of itself, to appeal to the sort of older school tastes that Pathfinder appealed to). We know this based on the quarterly rankings released by industry standard magazines. So please, don’t try and tell people that Pathfinder was outselling 4e right out the door, or that 4e was not selling anywhere near as well as Pathfinder was. Neither statement is true.  
 




At no point did I mention or claim that Pathfinder outsold 4th edition right out the door (I in fact know this is not the case). Nor did I say that at any point in time 4th edition didnt' sell as well or better than pathfinder. The point is that Pathfinder did eventually outsell 4th edition and 4th edition has become a failure.

My appologies if I wrote in such a way that you took it as I was trying to say Pathfinder was always better then 4th edition. I think the root cause of Pathfinder's climb to success was the players who initially hated 4th, and little to do with the release of the essentials books. I think the release of the essential lines of products was a sign of the failure of 4th edition. I am pretty sure if 4th edition was doing great, then the essential books never would have been released.    
Alright, lets go back in time for a moment. The launch of 4th edition. This was a big day for the folks at wotc and paizo. What essentially happened was for numerous reasons a large portion of the fan base did not like 4th edition. These reasons are varied and likely complex, and the reasons themselves unimportant for the discussion at hand. Fact is they didn't like it. You can also debate on what would have happened if paizo didn't start pathfinder. I think these people would have still not have adopted 4th edition, but that doesn't really matter either.

Now 4th edition comes out and it appeals to new players. In fact it seems to me that most people who have never played D&D before liked 4th edition, and I think it got a lot of people into d&d that hadn't played before. Probelm? Huge problem actually. Those previous players of D&D didn't like 4th edition. They didn't like 4th edition so much that a second tier (possibly lower) game company actually produced a "reprint" of the wotc 3.5 rulebook with changes and outsold the shiny new offical product.

They outsold 4th edition so much that Paizo became the number one roleplaying game company based on sales of roleplaying products. And 4th edition has ended up as a footnote in history. So bad was this descrepency that wotc made a huge announcement two years in advance. WotC would produce a 5th edition of D&D.

Now, you don't have to be a marketing manager to know how horrible it is to announce two years in advance that you are going to make a new product that replaces your old product is. This is even worse for roleplaying games since the products are assumed to have such long lifespans, and the creation of a new product replaces all the money you spent on your old product. The announcement by WotC essentially says that for the next two years we are not going to make any new D&D Books. Yes, they have a couple of setting books coming out. But the full on production of books has pretty much been put on hold for the next two years. Any smaller company than WotC would go out of business during that time. The loss of money is going to be huge. This is a big deal for any company. This is why such changes to a game system are kept secret until they are nearly completed. Even if you were going to do a playtest, ideally you would stil want as small as a gap as possible between the announcement and release.

My point in bring all this up is that appealing to new palyers over existing players was a huge failure for WotC. Had WotC produced Pathfinder instead of 4th edition, WotC would be doing awesome right now, and there would be no need for a 5th edition. WotC has to make a 5th edition of the game to save their jobs. You can bet Hasbro was not happy when Paizo became number 1...with WotC's old edtion.

While it is a good idea to attempt to appeal to people who aren't using your product already, it is a horrible idea to attempt to appeal to them and toss your current customers off the train. Lots of companies make this mistake, and then they end up going out of business. It is very unlikely that four people are going to get together and decide to try out this new D&D game one of them just heard about. What is likely to happen is that their friend who already plays D&D goes "Hey wanna come learn how to play D&D?" If that friend had instead already been playing Pathfinder or Shadowrun, or Vampire, well he would have gone "Hey wanna come play x other game?" 

Whatever current roleplayers are playing is what stores are going to promote and have in stock. This is important, because the games kept on the shelf of your local store are the ones that people are going to end up picking up and trying out. Wizards tried to get new palyers on board with 4th edition and it failed horribly. They ticked off the old players, and it didn't work out. You have to get current players on board, you absolutely have to get Pathfinder players on board, but you don't have to get Joe who has never played an rpg on board. Trying to make a game that Joe might like to play doesn't mean Joe will every play D&D. He might like it, but if you tick off his four friends who use to play D&D, well odds are that even though Joe likes the new D&D game he will go with his four friends and play Vampire instead.

Now with most game companies it might not be essential to reclaim the Pathfinder players, but since WotC is under Habsro, it is going to be essential to get Pathfinder players on board. Without Pathfinder players you are not going to end up with a significant increase over current 4th eiditon players, and given the current situation, current 4th edition players simply aren't going to cut it. If they were, then WotC would not have announced 5th edition so early (and probably wouldn't even had a playtest -- the playtest itself is a sure sign of how epically 4th edition failed) and 5th edition would be a good long ways down the road.

What is truely sad is that WotC could skip playtesting, forget about 5th edition and reprint the 3.5 rulebooks and make more money then 4th edition would make. Getting the 3.5 and 4th edition players on board is the key to 5th edition's success. Honestly, if you still play 1st edition or 2nd edition exclusively, then I really don't see you coming to 5th. So the key is 3.5 and 4th edition players. People who don't currenlty play D&D may never play D&D and trying to make a game someone will like but never play is a bad idea if you have to alienate the people who already play D&D.

If you alienate the people who currenlty paly D&D WotC may not make the sells to allow Joe to discover D&D and decide he wants to play it. No one might be there to encourage Joe to check out D&D or to show him how to play. Those same people may end up being why Joe never plays D&D. In a lot of ways this happened with 4th edition. The guys who hated 4th encouraged people to play Pathfinder. In fact while I liked 4th edition, the fact that my friends hated 4th resulted in WotC not making a dime from me (besides the corerulebooks). Had they got my friends on board, they would have certainly got more money from them, but also from me. Just because I liked 4th didn't result in any increased revenue for Wizards. Same deal with the guy who has never played an RPG before.                  




This entire post rests on the the false premise that Pathfinder is popular for the sole reason that players didn't like 4E. What you don't seem to understand is that 4E had about the same income as 3.xE for half its life. It failed because Hasbro put a $50 million dollar sales goal on a $35 million dollar product. In addition to this WotC had horrible customer support and 'changed direction'lied multiple times to their fan base.

Paizo and Pathfinder have extremely good customer relations and put out quality products. They aren't a second tier business or whatever. They are a great business that just happens to be smaller than WotC, that's really the only business...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
I guess it depends on your definition of great.

I mean from a game design perspective 4e is massively superior, but that doesn't dictate profit margins.
Why so much that goes wrong with DnD recently trace back to HAsbro?
 
Don't they realize that they bought an RPG company? let them do their damned jobs and take most of the money, you're suits it's all you're good at, don't try to interfere in the affairs of Wizards you elderberry reeking sons of vermin!



For my comment about Hasbro being the ogre that was more of a joke than anything specific.  

I believe the ogre's name is Hasbro. Generally speaking it is a bad business move to continue to support an older product while trying to grow its replacement.



The main problem was that they saw 4E as a replacement for 3rd, and it really wasn't, at least not in the eyes of the fans. 4E was a good game, but it was a very different game from editions before it.

It wasn't the case that Wizards didn't produce multiple RPGs at  the same time. Remember Star Wars d20, Call of Cthulhu and D20 modern.

Really, there's no reason why you can't have two coexisting D&Ds that appeal to different people.



I believe the ogre's name is Hasbro. Generally speaking it is a bad business move to continue to support an older product while trying to grow its replacement.



The main problem was that they saw 4E as a replacement for 3rd, and it really wasn't, at least not in the eyes of the fans. 4E was a good game, but it was a very different game from editions before it.

It wasn't the case that Wizards didn't produce multiple RPGs at  the same time. Remember Star Wars d20, Call of Cthulhu and D20 modern.

Really, there's no reason why you can't have two coexisting D&Ds that appeal to different people.





Just a quick question. Is WotC producing any of those other RPG's now? If, and I stress the word if, 3.5 and 4th edition absolutely appealed to different people, and there was no overlap in players. (Or if that overlap would buy every product from both) Then and only then would it be reasonable to support both. Otherwise it is better to take the one that sells the most and support that product and drop the other. 
I asbolutely believe that Pathfinder's claim to fame is that players didn't like 4th edition. The biggest reason for this is that Paizo didn't like fourth edtion and therefore created Pathfinder in the first place. Had the good folks at Paizo liked 4th edition, there wouldn't have been a Pathfinder to begin with.

I will however concede that Paizo has some great Marketing ideas that Wizards should steal. Hint Hint Subscriber discounts  

I believe the ogre's name is Hasbro. Generally speaking it is a bad business move to continue to support an older product while trying to grow its replacement.



The main problem was that they saw 4E as a replacement for 3rd, and it really wasn't, at least not in the eyes of the fans. 4E was a good game, but it was a very different game from editions before it.

It wasn't the case that Wizards didn't produce multiple RPGs at  the same time. Remember Star Wars d20, Call of Cthulhu and D20 modern.

Really, there's no reason why you can't have two coexisting D&Ds that appeal to different people.





Just a quick question. Is WotC producing any of those other RPG's now? If, and I stress the word if, 3.5 and 4th edition absolutely appealed to different people, and there was no overlap in players. (Or if that overlap would buy every product from both) Then and only then would it be reasonable to support both. Otherwise it is better to take the one that sells the most and support that product and drop the other. 



Actually that's false, you can split the work up in such a way that some things can be used in both like new art pieces can be used in both editions, fluff descriptions can be crossed over. Book designs can be reused. Play testers can be used for both. There are many ways to save money when making multiple products. That reminds me of the genius that went into the power rangers tv show.

They filmed the fight scenes in japan, the characters all wore masks. Then they filmed separate non-fight portions in japan and the U.S. then saved money because they only filmed the fight scenes once but had 2 markets.
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
They outsold 4th edition so much that Paizo became the number one roleplaying game company based on sales of roleplaying products.

I still  have a really tough time believing this. And here's why.

Barnes & Noble.

The people who run that outfit aren't stupid. If something is not selling, they don't stock it. If it's selling but not very fast, they don't stock many copies of it. The stuff that they put face-forward on the shelves is the stuff they expect customers to be looking for.

And I'll go into a Barnes & Noble store, and see four or more copies of each of a half-dozen 4E D&D books, two or three of them face-forward. Plus one or two copies of another dozen 4E D&D items (and I'm only counting things that are very specifically 4E - if it could be used without adaptation in multiple systems, I don't count it), with possibly one or two of them face-forward.

And alongside them will be two or three copies of the Pathfinder core book, and one copy of one other Pathfinder option. Neither of them face-forward.

This says to me that, at least at Barnes & Noble, 4E D&D outsells Pathfinder by a HUGE margin.

Further examination of the shelf tells me that the World of Darkness also outsells Pathfinder by a large margin, although not as large as 4E's. And that several other game systems are at least comparable to Pathfinder in sales. 

Now maybe Barnes & Noble is atypical. I can't dismiss that possibility. I also can't be very enthusiastic about it without seeing better evidence than I've seen so far.

(Does Barnes & Noble care that there's no new 4E material coming out? They also stock a fair number of copies of Shakespeare's plays, and there has been no new material in THAT series for about 400 years. They don't care. It's a book, it sells, they stock it.)
 
"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
I absolutely believe that Pathfinder's claim to fame is that players didn't like 4th edition. The biggest reason for this is that Paizo didn't like fourth edition and therefore created Pathfinder in the first place. Had the good folks at Paizo liked 4th edition, there wouldn't have been a Pathfinder to begin with.

I will however concede that Paizo has some great Marketing ideas that Wizards should steal. Hint Hint Subscriber discounts  



Part of pathfinder's fame might have come from fans not liking 4E, but they didn't beat 4E until 2 years in. If that's all it took they would have beat them right at the start. No, its because they had superior customer service, higher quality products, and didn't 'change direction'lie to their customers.

In fact if Pathfinder weren't based on 3.xE I'd probably their customer instead of WotC's customer...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.

Warrl, that evidence is a bid anecdotal. To counter with my own anecdotal evidence, where I live there is a chain of bookstores called BMV books. BMV books buys out stocks of books which are not selling well at massive discount price, and then sells them for massive discount price. I am seeing a lot of 4e and Gamma World products at BMV book stores lately. Of course, that too is anecdotal.

The most accurate information we have is what is released in industry standard magazines. According to those magazines, 4e was top seller for much of its life. Close to the end of its life it started to tie with Pathfinder. Around when the Essentials line of products started to be released, or a little after, Pathfinder started to rank first place. I have not checked the rankings for a while now, but somehow I doubt 4e is topping the charts (what with a new edition being announced). 

I asbolutely believe that Pathfinder's claim to fame is that players didn't like 4th edition. The biggest reason for this is that Paizo didn't like fourth edtion and therefore created Pathfinder in the first place. Had the good folks at Paizo liked 4th edition, there wouldn't have been a Pathfinder to begin with.

I will however concede that Paizo has some great Marketing ideas that Wizards should steal. Hint Hint Subscriber discounts  


Try again.

It didn't matter if Paizo liked 4E or not.

Under the terms of the OGL, Paizo could continue to produce 3E-related products and pocket the money. But under the terms of the license under which 4E was released, they could not produce 4E-related products unless they got WotC's approval and gave WotC a slice of the proceeds. And at about the same time WotC tried to cut them out of WotC's D&D line, by taking the magazine production (formerly contracted to Paizo) in-house, so they had no reason to think they could get WotC's permission to do 4E products - and no reason to be thinking of WotC in polite terms.

Therefore, even if they thought 3E was stale bat-guano and 4E was solid gold, Paizo would continue to produce 3E-related products.
 
And, naturally, they would publicly prefer their own products over WotC's. Failing to do so would be too stupid for words.
 
"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose


Actually that's false, you can split the work up in such a way that some things can be used in both like new art pieces can be used in both editions, fluff descriptions can be crossed over. Book designs can be reused. Play testers can be used for both. There are many ways to save money when making multiple products. That reminds me of the genius that went into the power rangers tv show.

They filmed the fight scenes in japan, the characters all wore masks. Then they filmed separate non-fight portions in japan and the U.S. then saved money because they only filmed the fight scenes once but had 2 markets.



But you still had to hire a set of actors in both the U.S. and Japan. You simply prove my point. There is no overlap in the U.S. Market and the Japan Market. They are seperate hence my statement does not apply to your power rangers example. I would agree with you, in the case of Power Rangers it was a good idea. You can make two products as long as they are going to two different markets. Power Rangers example proves my point.

So yes, you can find ways to save money when making multiple products...But it still costs more, as you illustrated by having to still hire one set of actors from the U.S. and one set of actors from Japan.
Actually Paizo created pathfinder because they didn't wanted to design a game at all, Pathfinder is the closest thing to Plagiarism from the d20 OGL thing,  many of the d20 variants under the OGL try to diverge from D&D 3.5 by adding and modifying fundamental main mechanics on the system or changing completly the feel of the game....Pathfinder don't, it feels like 3.5, it plays like 3.5, and 95% of the system is taken from 3.5.

And yes, it would be nice if wotc could support more than one system at the time, but imo, the murder of 4e is a PR move to please the ego of 4e haters to attract them back to the company.  

Is like if you used to be with the "cool kids" on junior school, and on junior high you lose their friendship and got other new friends, and on highschool you want those old friends back, and to make yourself look cool to your former friends, you bully, insult and make fun of your current friends.

Most 4e players i know all over the world (and i mean international level, i don't refer to the guys that play on the shop i buy crap on, because i currently play online with people from other countries) are new to D&D or PnP RPGs, most of them because didn't liked the older editions to get into the game at all, couldn't stand the system, even thought some of them tolerated the modified version of those on cRPGs like NWN, KOTOR or Baldur's Gate (i didn't, i hated those games because of the system). 

It didn't matter if Paizo liked 4E or not.

Under the terms of the OGL, Paizo could continue to produce 3E-related products and pocket the money. But under the terms of the license under which 4E was released, they could not produce 4E-related products unless they got WotC's approval and gave WotC a slice of the proceeds. And at about the same time WotC tried to cut them out of WotC's D&D line, by taking the magazine production (formerly contracted to Paizo) in-house, so they had no reason to think they could get WotC's permission to do 4E products - and no reason to be thinking of WotC in polite terms.

Therefore, even if they thought 3E was stale bat-guano and 4E was solid gold, Paizo would continue to produce 3E-related products.
 
And, naturally, they would publicly prefer their own products over WotC's. Failing to do so would be too stupid for words.
 



Now, I don't know how much what you said factored into Paizo's descision to make Pathfinder. I do know that people who work at Paizo are friends with people who work at WotC (there are actually pictures of Paizo Employees and WotC employees together.) Pathfinder certainly would think Wizards would give them the right to make games. They didnt' have the magazines pulled because they were doing a horrible job, but more because Wizards thought DDI would be a great idea.

Now, the offical reason Paizo didn't adopt 4th was because it didn't agree with their game design philosphy. I call that not liking 4th edition. How much the other stuff came into the picture, I have no idea. 


Actually that's false, you can split the work up in such a way that some things can be used in both like new art pieces can be used in both editions, fluff descriptions can be crossed over. Book designs can be reused. Play testers can be used for both. There are many ways to save money when making multiple products. That reminds me of the genius that went into the power rangers tv show.

They filmed the fight scenes in japan, the characters all wore masks. Then they filmed separate non-fight portions in japan and the U.S. then saved money because they only filmed the fight scenes once but had 2 markets.



But you still had to hire a set of actors in both the U.S. and Japan. You simply prove my point. There is no overlap in the U.S. Market and the Japan Market. They are seperate hence my statement does not apply to your power rangers example. I would agree with you, in the case of Power Rangers it was a good idea. You can make two products as long as they are going to two different markets. Power Rangers example proves my point.

So yes, you can find ways to save money when making multiple products...But it still costs more, as you illustrated by having to still hire one set of actors from the U.S. and one set of actors from Japan.



No actually you proved my point. If you were to sell two movies one produced in japan to the japanese public and one produced in the U.S. for the U.S. public. Now lets say that both movies cost $70k (low budget). They both make $100k in profit. Now what happens if you only have to hire stunt actors once for both movies and can re-use monster suits and sets. Suddenly The cost of each movie goes down by $10k thus increasing profit not lowering it.

The same would happen with multiple editions at the same time. Picture re-use. formatting re-use. Play test re-use would create a a bigger profit than doing both separate...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
Because of the way Paizo works, Barnes and Noble is a bad example. Due to the Subscriber discounts I would expect most of Paizo's sells to come from their own website. You can't buy from WotC directly, so I would expect WotC to outsell Pathfinder at Barnes and Nobel.


Actually that's false, you can split the work up in such a way that some things can be used in both like new art pieces can be used in both editions, fluff descriptions can be crossed over. Book designs can be reused. Play testers can be used for both. There are many ways to save money when making multiple products. That reminds me of the genius that went into the power rangers tv show.

They filmed the fight scenes in japan, the characters all wore masks. Then they filmed separate non-fight portions in japan and the U.S. then saved money because they only filmed the fight scenes once but had 2 markets.



But you still had to hire a set of actors in both the U.S. and Japan. You simply prove my point. There is no overlap in the U.S. Market and the Japan Market. They are seperate hence my statement does not apply to your power rangers example. I would agree with you, in the case of Power Rangers it was a good idea. You can make two products as long as they are going to two different markets. Power Rangers example proves my point.

So yes, you can find ways to save money when making multiple products...But it still costs more, as you illustrated by having to still hire one set of actors from the U.S. and one set of actors from Japan.



No actually you proved my point. If you were to sell two movies one produced in japan to the japanese public and one produced in the U.S. for the U.S. public. Now lets say that both movies cost $70k (low budget). They both make $100k in profit. Now what happens if you only have to hire stunt actors once for both movies and can re-use monster suits and sets. Suddenly The cost of each movie goes down by $10k thus increasing profit not lowering it.

The same would happen with multiple editions at the same time. Picture re-use. formatting re-use. Play test re-use would create a a bigger profit than doing both separate...Smile


The problem here is that I conceded out of the gate that if the Markets don't overlap you can make two products. The Japanse Market and the U.S. Market don't overlap!!!! You have completely missed that statement of mine. I agree if you are selling to two different markets, you can do that.


Actually that's false, you can split the work up in such a way that some things can be used in both like new art pieces can be used in both editions, fluff descriptions can be crossed over. Book designs can be reused. Play testers can be used for both. There are many ways to save money when making multiple products. That reminds me of the genius that went into the power rangers tv show.

They filmed the fight scenes in japan, the characters all wore masks. Then they filmed separate non-fight portions in japan and the U.S. then saved money because they only filmed the fight scenes once but had 2 markets.



But you still had to hire a set of actors in both the U.S. and Japan. You simply prove my point. There is no overlap in the U.S. Market and the Japan Market. They are seperate hence my statement does not apply to your power rangers example. I would agree with you, in the case of Power Rangers it was a good idea. You can make two products as long as they are going to two different markets. Power Rangers example proves my point.

So yes, you can find ways to save money when making multiple products...But it still costs more, as you illustrated by having to still hire one set of actors from the U.S. and one set of actors from Japan.



No actually you proved my point. If you were to sell two movies one produced in japan to the japanese public and one produced in the U.S. for the U.S. public. Now lets say that both movies cost $70k (low budget). They both make $100k in profit. Now what happens if you only have to hire stunt actors once for both movies and can re-use monster suits and sets. Suddenly The cost of each movie goes down by $10k thus increasing profit not lowering it.

The same would happen with multiple editions at the same time. Picture re-use. formatting re-use. Play test re-use would create a a bigger profit than doing both separate...Smile


The problem here is that I conceded out of the gate that if the Markets don't overlap you can make two products. The Japanse Market and the U.S. Market don't overlap!!!! You have completely missed that statement of mine. I agree if you are selling to two different markets, you can do that.



How is 3.xE fans and 4E fans not two different markets? That's proven by Pathfinder sales and 4E sales...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
Now, I don't know how much what you said factored into Paizo's descision to make Pathfinder. I do know that people who work at Paizo are friends with people who work at WotC (there are actually pictures of Paizo Employees and WotC employees together.) Pathfinder certainly would think Wizards would give them the right to make games. They didnt' have the magazines pulled because they were doing a horrible job, but more because Wizards thought DDI would be a great idea.

Now, the offical reason Paizo didn't adopt 4th was because it didn't agree with their game design philosphy. I call that not liking 4th edition. How much the other stuff came into the picture, I have no idea. 

It doesn't matter a whole lot, from Paizo's perspective, why WotC pulled the magazines away from them. The fact was Paizo was making money off of the magazines, and WotC took that away. (WotC could have asked Paizo to continue doing the magazines but send them the content electronically to put on DDI, in exchange for a cut of the DDI revenues.)

At the same time WotC was coming out with a new edition, which threatened to invalidate Paizo's current product line of supporting material, and cutting Paizo off from their current business model (at least in regard to the new edition).

Let's see... cutting off a chunk of their revenue, cutting off their business model, and invalidating their product line, all at the same time? Yeah, I can understand how Paizo would be eager to disagree with that philosophy, and would be eager to do something to preserve their business...

Such as find, or become, a new primary publisher for the core material they are already supporting. Which would preserve the value of their existing product line AND allow them to continue producing new product within the same business model... and allow them to start producing their own magazine, replacing that revenue stream... and possibly even become a new source of profit.

(Please note: I am not saying that their official explanation is false. I'm saying that from a business sense it's irrelevant. They would do what they did if it's true; they would do what they did if it's false.)

"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose


Actually that's false, you can split the work up in such a way that some things can be used in both like new art pieces can be used in both editions, fluff descriptions can be crossed over. Book designs can be reused. Play testers can be used for both. There are many ways to save money when making multiple products. That reminds me of the genius that went into the power rangers tv show.

They filmed the fight scenes in japan, the characters all wore masks. Then they filmed separate non-fight portions in japan and the U.S. then saved money because they only filmed the fight scenes once but had 2 markets.



But you still had to hire a set of actors in both the U.S. and Japan. You simply prove my point. There is no overlap in the U.S. Market and the Japan Market. They are seperate hence my statement does not apply to your power rangers example. I would agree with you, in the case of Power Rangers it was a good idea. You can make two products as long as they are going to two different markets. Power Rangers example proves my point.

So yes, you can find ways to save money when making multiple products...But it still costs more, as you illustrated by having to still hire one set of actors from the U.S. and one set of actors from Japan.



No actually you proved my point. If you were to sell two movies one produced in japan to the japanese public and one produced in the U.S. for the U.S. public. Now lets say that both movies cost $70k (low budget). They both make $100k in profit. Now what happens if you only have to hire stunt actors once for both movies and can re-use monster suits and sets. Suddenly The cost of each movie goes down by $10k thus increasing profit not lowering it.

The same would happen with multiple editions at the same time. Picture re-use. formatting re-use. Play test re-use would create a a bigger profit than doing both separate...Smile


The problem here is that I conceded out of the gate that if the Markets don't overlap you can make two products. The Japanse Market and the U.S. Market don't overlap!!!! You have completely missed that statement of mine. I agree if you are selling to two different markets, you can do that.



How is 3.xE fans and 4E fans not two different markets? That's proven by Pathfinder sales and 4E sales...



Because both demography hate each other and refuse to acknowledge that the other one exist (thought in my experience, the pre 4e crew hate 4e players more often than 4e hating pre 4e players), and they won't support a company that support them too.  Like i said, that's why i suspect why wotc decided to "murder" 4e, to please the ego of this demography and pray that their current fanbase don't notice.

I believe that many 3.5 and 4e fans are two different markets though I am not sure if that should be stated as most or all. If Wizards did produce two different versions, I ultimately think 4 edition would have been scrapped a lot earlier then it has been due to the (assumed) superior sells of 3.5.


Actually that's false, you can split the work up in such a way that some things can be used in both like new art pieces can be used in both editions, fluff descriptions can be crossed over. Book designs can be reused. Play testers can be used for both. There are many ways to save money when making multiple products. That reminds me of the genius that went into the power rangers tv show.

They filmed the fight scenes in japan, the characters all wore masks. Then they filmed separate non-fight portions in japan and the U.S. then saved money because they only filmed the fight scenes once but had 2 markets.



But you still had to hire a set of actors in both the U.S. and Japan. You simply prove my point. There is no overlap in the U.S. Market and the Japan Market. They are seperate hence my statement does not apply to your power rangers example. I would agree with you, in the case of Power Rangers it was a good idea. You can make two products as long as they are going to two different markets. Power Rangers example proves my point.

So yes, you can find ways to save money when making multiple products...But it still costs more, as you illustrated by having to still hire one set of actors from the U.S. and one set of actors from Japan.



No actually you proved my point. If you were to sell two movies one produced in japan to the japanese public and one produced in the U.S. for the U.S. public. Now lets say that both movies cost $70k (low budget). They both make $100k in profit. Now what happens if you only have to hire stunt actors once for both movies and can re-use monster suits and sets. Suddenly The cost of each movie goes down by $10k thus increasing profit not lowering it.

The same would happen with multiple editions at the same time. Picture re-use. formatting re-use. Play test re-use would create a a bigger profit than doing both separate...Smile


The problem here is that I conceded out of the gate that if the Markets don't overlap you can make two products. The Japanse Market and the U.S. Market don't overlap!!!! You have completely missed that statement of mine. I agree if you are selling to two different markets, you can do that.



How is 3.xE fans and 4E fans not two different markets? That's proven by Pathfinder sales and 4E sales...



Because both demography hate each other and refuse to acknowledge that the other one exist (thought in my experience, the pre 4e crew hate 4e players more often than 4e hating pre 4e players), and they won't support a company that support them too.  Like i said, that's why i suspect why wotc decided to "murder" 4e, to please the ego of this demography and pray that their current fanbase don't notice.




That only proves they are two separate markets that don't overlap which is a point in my arguments favor...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
I asbolutely believe that Pathfinder's claim to fame is that players didn't like 4th edition. The biggest reason for this is that Paizo didn't like fourth edtion and therefore created Pathfinder in the first place. Had the good folks at Paizo liked 4th edition, there wouldn't have been a Pathfinder to begin with.

I will however concede that Paizo has some great Marketing ideas that Wizards should steal. Hint Hint Subscriber discounts  



Paizo probably didn't care about 4e they just didn't like like getting screwed.  If Wizards had stuck with the OGL and not screwed Paizo out of lucrative magazine deals they would be suckling at the teat of WotC and publishing bitching awesome 4e products.  As it is not only did WotC cut a group of dedicated talented designers out of the D&D deal, they also left the prior edition of D&D completly unprotected so that anybody could just pick it up.  Of course Paizo took a shot at their own RPG.

It also isn't suprising that they did so damn well.  First of all a big chunk of each edition stays behind in the last, probably about a third.  As those old gamers get older they quite/ move on/ go underground ect. in biger numbers then new edition people do, so their market power drops over time.  However with the mass internet of this decade up and running at full force a lot of the malcontents were way better conected this time around.  Also Paizo had a few months to lay the groundwork of anti-4e sentiment in the Dungeon and Dragon magazines. Also Paizo got to publish their retclone three quarters after 4e released.

Of course Pathfinder did well any retroclone of any edition would have done well in those conditions.  Unsurpisingly though they still weren't really competing with WotC for about year and a half afterwards.  In fact they probably would have never been major competition except that the mighty Hasbro swooped down from on high and demanded that more money be made.

Well here is the new guy in charge Mike Merals who knows a thing or two about a thing or two and he gets to thinking:


  • A lot of people are doing this Pathfinder thing, I wonder if we could get them to play D&D again instead?

  • A good way to get people to buy new books is to release a new edition of core books.

  • Hey a starter set for new players would be cool.  I wonder how I would market that?

  • I never really liked this 4e thing all that much, I prefer a more Old-School feel. 


These ideas, mismashed as they were, produced Essentials.  The product didn't recapture the old-school feel.  It didn't break Pathfinder.  It failed to draw new players due to weak weak marketing.  And it really really pissed a lot of 4e players off.  Frankly Pathfinder didn't catch up to 4e in the market, 4e dropped down to Pathfinders level when Essentials came out. 

P.S.
 Now, I don't know how much what you said factored into Paizo's descision to make Pathfinder. I do know that people who work at Paizo are friends with people who work at WotC (there are actually pictures of Paizo Employees and WotC employees together.) Pathfinder certainly would think Wizards would give them the right to make games.

 

Except that Hasbro is made up of some of the most evil SoBs to ever live and Paizo damn well knows it.  Look at the routine yearly layoffs at Hasbro's subsidiary companies (WotC very much included).  No inteligent buissness would rely on the good will of Hasbro if they didn't have to. 
Given that Paizo was a magazine publishing busines for the most part, they were not even set up to produce something like the Pathfinder game. Their warehouse wasns't even big enough, and had to eventually move. Taking on a project like Pathfinder was definetely more of a risk then adopting the 4th edition of D&D. For all they knew, everyone would jump on board 4th and if they didn't, that would have ended the company.


Neither option really allowed Paizo to contiue with business as usual. Both reqiured a major change in the company. I think using their supplied reason is better then attempting to speculate as to what the reason may have been from a business perspective. In fact from a business perspective I would have told them to jump on 4th edition and forget principles and design philosophies. The very notion that they would even come close to outselling offical product would have been silly.  
As I understand it, to meet sales expectations for 4E, the game would have had to retain the entire fan base of 3.x, as well as bring in a significant number of new players.

If 4E had been put out by any other company, it would have been considered a huge success.



Yes, they had to push the $35 million to $40 million profits of 4E up to $50 million in the first two years and then up to $100 million in the next two years. So they needed to double their revenue every two years...

The failure of 4E had nothing to do with doing less business than 3.xE, it had to do with Ha$bro's unrealistic sales goals...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
So... Paizo shouldn't take the golden opportunity (guaranteed edition changeover market + Internet communication and organization of haters) to use their veteran game design staff (D&D mags produce tons of crunch content) to produce their own RPG (a lot of which was a free copy of another RPG) because *gasp* it would make so much demand that they would have to buy bigger facilities. 

No business ever has done something simply because their principals tells them they should.  Every buisines decision made with money is made for business reasons

Also Paizo didn't have to compete with 4e they just had to make enough money to keep the company running and make them all a little richer.  That isn't a huge hurdle in the RPG industry.  It's just that D&D is held to BS standards by Hasbro.
Given that Paizo was a magazine publishing busines for the most part, they were not even set up to produce something like the Pathfinder game. Their warehouse wasns't even big enough, and had to eventually move. Taking on a project like Pathfinder was definetely more of a risk then adopting the 4th edition of D&D. For all they knew, everyone would jump on board 4th and if they didn't, that would have ended the company.

Doing something you can legally do and probably makes good business sense, is NOT riskier than doing something that you can't legally do and that Hasbro's corporate attorneys will be specifically watching you to see if you do it.

"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
As I understand it, to meet sales expectations for 4E, the game would have had to retain the entire fan base of 3.x, as well as bring in a significant number of new players.

If 4E had been put out by any other company, it would have been considered a huge success.



Yes, they had to push the $35 million to $40 million profits of 4E up to $50 million in the first two years and then up to $100 million in the next two years. So they needed to double their revenue every two years...

The failure of 4E had nothing to do with doing less business than 3.xE, it had to do with Ha$bro's unrealistic sales goals...



Like i have said before, Hasbro's expectation for Dungeons & Dragons is international/global level...and even with the DDI opening the door to some players outside the first world english speaking countries (USA, Canada, UK), it wasn't enough.  In latinamerica, groups of people pirated the crap out of 4e books, not because they don't want to pay for it...because they can't buy them at all, neither digital or printed, hell some of the pirates actually made translated hacks of the scanned PDF to spanish.