Re: Electronic publishing (am I alone?)

From: ttrotsky2 <TTrotsky_at_hdfe0Sb8NIUuhBPpEMaoSVf9BqR5cY1xC-9yhLvyPP3ET7KA-jsQMvgXbrTbYqoL9Y6>
Date: Mon, 30 Mar 2009 17:58:32 -0000

Dan Ross:

> > John Machin wrote:
> > >All sorts of indie gaming folks have found that pre-orders, with PDFs
> > >being provided to pre-ordering clients until the books are printed, is
> > >a fairly good way to go.
> This seems increasingly common with boardgames for wargamers.
> Multiman Publishing (which now prints the Advanced Squad Leader
> Games) is typical: they prepare a game, and once it has a certain
> number of orders (1500 for the last ASL release), they start the
> print. The games are beautiful, and the first run is entirely sold
> before the presses even heat up.
> I've ordered several games from different publishers in this format,
> with a typical waiting period of about nine months. It allows
> customers to get high-quality prints and publishers to sell their
> games with payment up-front.
> Is this a viable option for RPGs?

It's certainly worth trying, IMO. Whether it will work in the long run, who can say? I fear that a pure PDF route is more likely, in the end - although, like you, I can't say I'm *happy* about that prospect. It may turn out that it's that or nothing... but, for the meantime, something half-way like John suggests should hopefully be seriously considered as an option. (Not that I have any say in the matter myself, of course).

The danger, I suspect, is that MD just keeps on trying to do what it's always done - which clearly isn't working, especially for the non-Dragon Pass books. For the rulebooks, sure, publish them by the standard route; the Pavis and Sartar books too, probably. But with the others, with sales as small as they apparently are, it's got to be at least worth trying *something* different. Which is unfortunate, but may also be Real Life.

Gamer and Skeptic

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