Monday, April 6, 2009

Wizards cuts OBS Loose?!?

Wizards of the Coast has cut DTRPG/RPGNow loose, it appears. Something is going on... hmmm... have they sold Dungeons & Dragons to another company? I say this because, with the utter lack of success Wizards has had with its online efforts, taking on sales of PDFs themselves is disastrous. Not that such would stop the suits who, of course, "always know better." But keeping it in-house? That's just preaching to the choir. And stopping ALL sales of PDFs? That's so... so... 20th Century.

No, something BIG must be going on. Something Big...

Or it's just another case of Corporate Stupidity.

Here's the note from DTRPG/RPGNow:

Wizards of the Coast has instructed us to suspend all sales and downloads of Wizards of the Coast titles. Unfortunately, this includes offering download access to previously purchased Wizards of the Coast titles. We are in discussions with Wizards about their decision to change their approach to digital sales of their titles and will post more information as we have it. If you would like to let Wizards know your opinion on offering D&D titles for download, we suggest the D&D Message Boards found here.
By "here" they refer to the Gleemax boards: http://forums.gleemax.com/forumdisplay.php?f=693

22 comments:

K. Forest said...

Curiouser and curiouser.

Scott said...

I'm confident that Wizards will utilize synergy to leverage the same core competencies that have smoothly delivered all of their other recent digital initiatives for the Dungeons & Dragons and Magic: the Gathering games, making them unequivocal successes and growing the brands.

Ragnorakk said...

heh.
oh. pardon the rubber necking.
moving along now...

Gamer Dude said...

Yeah, I read this when I went to grab an old B4 download that I had on Paizo... Odd indeed. I looked at the date (April 6, today.) and thought, "well now, that's not a lot of warning."

And Scott, you gotta stop jabbering the biz-speak, you're going to sound like a corp-o-clone. ;-)

Scott said...

A WotC rep has posted on their forum that the change is a response to illegal file sharing.

Jeff Rients said...

So in response to piracy they're going to make sure the only way I can get a PDF copy is by piracy? That's pure fucking genius, right there.

Based upon James' recommendation over on my blog I was going to buy a copy of OA2 Swords of the Daimyo but I don't think I'm in a rush to get it now. Why give these guys a nickle if they're just going to punish me for someone else pirating the book?

Scott said...

Hey, I didn't say it was an intelligent response.

Oddysey said...

Bizarre. Had pretty much the same thought as Jeff Rients. Makes me glad I'm not longer beholden to this particular company.

Zachary The First said...

Nor am I. The only thing I still did with WotC was pick up some old pdf copies from previous editions. Now they've lost my business and my trust. We're quits.

James Mishler said...

My main concern is how this is going to affect pricing issues with DTRPG/RPGNow and Paizo. They just lost their biggest vendor; that's a huge chunk of change! How is this going to affect the cut we publishers are going to have to give them?

I've been fairly straightforward with everyone on these kinds of issues. PDF sales are the thing that kept me from completely dying last year (and the sales since October have just been terrible). If I have to give up a big chunk of my cut... well, that could well be the final nail in the coffin.

Even worse, what happens if, even with a bigger cut of what remains, these companies can't keep going with the PDF sales? What then?

Ya know, if this was all being done due to a real issue, something that taking away PDF sales from these companies would make a difference for, I would be understanding. But taking away the only LEGITIMATE venue for people to acquire PDFs of your product to FIGHT piracy?

That is the Dumbest. Thing. I. Have. Ever. Heard!

Wizards has really topped itself on this one. Makes some of the really stupid stuff TSR did back in the day seem almost brilliant by comparison. Even if they bring back sales of PDFs direct through their own site, why should anyone ever buy from them? How can they EVER be trusted not to screw over their own customers? The idiot nutjobs are certainly in charge over there now.

I've dreaded the day that Wizards finally collapses, and D&D disappears into a vortex of red tape and bankruptcy, but you know, now I can't wait for that day to come. The sooner it comes, the sooner we can try to rebuild a game industry without these stupid, slack-jawed, yokel corporate suits.

James Mishler said...

You know what, me too, Zach. I've done with these bastards. Never again. Not another penny. I don't care if they someday come back and kiss all our asses, publishing Gary's Own Edition.

I'd been keeping my copies of the 4E DMG, PHB, and MM1, on the off chance that someday I might, under a decent GSL, decide to publish something for 4E. Now, hells no. Never. Nothing to support those assholes. This weekend, they go in the pile of stuff to be sold at Half Price Books.

Scott said...

"Good. Use your aggressive feelings, boy. Let the hate flow through you."

Hey, T&T still seems to be in the hands of real live human beings. Join me on the Dark Side. :)

James Mishler said...

Hey, T&T still seems to be in the hands of real live human beings. Join me on the Dark Side. :)

Thanks, but T&T just isn't my cup o' tea. Nice system, but doesn't fit my style.

Fortunately, I was already quite far and away from the current incarnation of D&D. Sales of C&C products no longer support Wizards, as they no longer support the OGL d20 system, so I've got no problem working with and publishing C&C.

In fact, to the extent that C&C sales can take away sales from 4E, I'll be that much happier. Fuck Wizards.

And, of course, running 1E also helps them not one whit, especially when I bring more 4E players in from the cold, dark, soulless depths of that system to the warm embrace of Gary's Own Game.

Barking Alien said...

Seems my general lack of interest in D&D back in the mid-to-late eighties and complete disinterest in D&D at all beginning about 4 years ago places me well ahead of my time.

Thanks to the actions of WotC/Hasbro over the last year or so, I'm a gaming genius!

AD
Barking Alien

Louis Porter Jr. said...

Now I feel even better I didn't get involved with WOTC and 4th edition. Way to make your customers happy!

Matt C said...

Needless to say, I am upset. So many things upset me that stem from this irresponsible decision from WOTC that I'll comment on my blog about it. Right now, I need to cool off a bit.

Leo Richard Comerford said...
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Leo Richard Comerford said...
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Leo Richard Comerford said...
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Matthew James Stanham said...

Strange news indeed. Let us hope for a resolution beneficial to us all.

Matt C said...

I posted my thoughts on my blog as it was too long to mention here.

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