One Year Later: D&D 5E PHB & MM Still On NYT Bestseller Lists
  • One Year Later: D&D 5E PHB & MM Still On NYT Bestseller Lists


    It's been year since D&D 5th Edition hit our store shelves (if we're counting the Starter Set); or since August 2014 since the Player's Handbook released. The D&D 5th Edition Monster Manual is hanging in at #7 on the "Games & Activities" bestsellers list at the New York Times, while the Player's Handbook is #3. Although it seems Minecraft has books, which are kicking both their asses. Who knew? (Lots of people, apparently!)

    You can see the current list here. A snapshot is below.



    Comments 43 Comments
    1. smiteworks's Avatar
      smiteworks -
      There is a reason Microsoft bought Minecraft for $2.5 Billion. I confess that I simply don't get it... but obviously a large number of other people do. Of all the crazes and fads, we could do much worse than Minecraft, though, so I applaud them for making something that spurs creativity.
    1. TerraDave's Avatar
      TerraDave -
      I guess that's my cue.

      On the Amazon gaming list, top 5 items right now are D&D:

      http://www.amazon.com/gp/bestsellers..._zg_hrsr_b_1_3

      And its that Zelda book that keeps hanging around.

      PHB has hovered around 100 in overall sales (which is amazing for a game book) for months now. Its on sell again and at 76 right now:

      http://www.amazon.com/Players-Handbo...=zg_bs_16211_1
    1. ccooke's Avatar
      ccooke -
      It's an interesting thing to note that Minecraft is a massive cultural phenomenon right now... and the PHB is selling better than all but the most popular book based on it.
    1. Paraxis -
      This is cool and all but didn''t the Pathfinder core book stay in the top ten for years too?
    1. Mistwell's Avatar
      Mistwell -
      Quote Originally Posted by Paraxis View Post
      This is cool and all but didn''t the Pathfinder core book stay in the top ten for years too?
      Pathfinder was top of IcV2 for a while, but not Amazon or NYT for a long period of time. At least, not that I ever saw.

      Some argue that's because they direct-sell so much of their stuff.
    1. Umbran's Avatar
      Umbran -
      On Amazon, the PHB is currently #76 in Books.

      Not in Books > Games or somesuch. Just in Books, overall.

      The DMG is running at #174 in Books. The MM comes in at #177.
    1. Mistwell's Avatar
      Mistwell -
      You know there were a LOT of people that said, "Sure it had a good launch but talk to me again after a year and well see if it's still selling well then".

      OK...here we are. Let's talk.

      I personally don't think of this as a year (for me it's a year after the last core book comes out that's most relevant). But this is "A" point to talk about.
    1. R_Chance's Avatar
      R_Chance -
      One thing about RPG books, multiple sets. I just bought a second set off Amazon a month ago (or so...) to go with the first set I bought at release. A 3rd PHB wouldn't be out of the question either (after the errata is included).
    1. TerraDave's Avatar
      TerraDave -
      Quote Originally Posted by Paraxis View Post
      This is cool and all but didn''t the Pathfinder core book stay in the top ten for years too?
      We have had threads on this...but I guess we like familiar topics here.

      It might be in "top ten" gaming for a while. Not #1 or all top 3-5 (it has varied a bit). Its highest overall rating as far as I could tell (again, threads on this) was about 600.

      But yes, they have a different sales model, business model, expectations, etc, etc.
    1. Parmandur's Avatar
      Parmandur -
      Quote Originally Posted by TerraDave View Post
      I guess that's my cue.





      On the Amazon gaming list, top 5 items right now are D&D:





      http://www.amazon.com/gp/bestsellers..._zg_hrsr_b_1_3





      And its that Zelda book that keeps hanging around.





      PHB has hovered around 100 in overall sales (which is amazing for a game book) for months now. Its on sell again and at 76 right now:





      http://www.amazon.com/Players-Handbo...=zg_bs_16211_1


      That Zelda book is solid gold; amazing coffee table book, well worth every penny.
    1. EthanSental's Avatar
      EthanSental -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mistwell View Post
      You know there were a LOT of people that said, "Sure it had a good launch but talk to me again after a year and well see if it's still selling well then".

      OK...here we are. Let's talk.

      I personally don't think of this as a year (for me it's a year after the last core book comes out that's most relevant). But this is "A" point to talk about.
      Hey Mist! You beat me to it as I was thinking the exact same thing, really I was. So I guess another thread will start at the D&D forums about how its failing since a year later its not in the top 50, by the usual thread starters we see weekly.

      Glad to see its still has strong sales.
    1. TarionzCousin's Avatar
      TarionzCousin -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mistwell View Post
      You know there were a LOT of people that said, "Sure it had a good launch but talk to me again after a year and well see if it's still selling well then".

      OK...here we are. Let's talk.

      I personally don't think of this as a year (for me it's a year after the last core book comes out that's most relevant). But this is "A" point to talk about.
      I would say our prophet's prediction about 4E was more accurate toward 5E.

      Yes, he saw TOO FAR into the future.

      #firstworldproblems
    1. delericho's Avatar
      delericho -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mistwell View Post
      You know there were a LOT of people that said, "Sure it had a good launch but talk to me again after a year and well see if it's still selling well then".

      OK...here we are. Let's talk.
      Yep, fair play to them - they built a good game, and it's good to see it continuing to do well.
    1. chibi graz'zt's Avatar
      chibi graz'zt -
      This is awesome, 5e still has a strong sales momentum 1 year later.
    1. Parmandur's Avatar
      Parmandur -
      Jeez, on Amazon just about every 5E book released is outselling Pathfinder Core, even Out of the Abyss. So much for a weak release schedule...
    1. Windjammer -
      This is a useful list for tracking actual sales on all Amazon sites per month: http://www.novelrank.com/asin/0786965606

      According to that site, the sales number for the 5th Edition Player's Handbook to date (tracking began August 2014) on Amazon US is around 15,800. This does not factor in Amazon sales in Europe and Asia, obviously, nor indeed sales on other sites and in stores.

      Still, it's a bit steep to compare it to the initial sales of PHB 3.0, which according to Ryan Dancey were 300,000 in its first month alone, and which (as an aside) was never entered into New York times listings.

      The real question for fans of the current edition, I guess, is less the absolute ranking of the 5.0 PHB compared to its predecessors, but its relative position compared to whatever benchmark figure Hasbro or WotC requires to reinvigorate D&D's product catalogue, replenish design personell, etc.

      Edit. Just found the same site for the Pathfinder core rulebook: http://www.novelrank.com/asin/1601251505
      Sales are in the hundreds per month in the past year or so.
    1. TerraDave's Avatar
      TerraDave -
      Quote Originally Posted by Windjammer View Post
      This is a useful list for tracking actual sales on all Amazon sites per month: http://www.novelrank.com/asin/0786965606

      According to that site, the sales number for the 5th Edition Player's Handbook to date (tracking began August 2014) on Amazon US is around 15,800. This does not factor in Amazon sales in Europe and Asia, obviously, nor indeed sales on other sites and in stores.

      Still, it's a bit steep to compare it to the initial sales of PHB 3.0, which according to Ryan Dancey were 300,000 in its first month alone, and which (as an aside) was never entered into New York times listings.

      ...
      What that site is saying: Books don't sell through amazon. I have seen other sights with very different sorts of estimates, especially for products in the top 10.

      I agree on the relative ranking, and that has been really high from every data point we can find.
    1. TerraDave's Avatar
      TerraDave -
      Here is another set of estimates of sales by ranking

      http://www.fonerbooks.com/surfing.htm

      Honestly, looking at this, it can be hard to tell...but probably more then 15,000, maybe much more.
    1. Jester David's Avatar
      Jester David -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mistwell View Post
      Pathfinder was top of IcV2 for a while, but not Amazon or NYT for a long period of time. At least, not that I ever saw.

      Some argue that's because they direct-sell so much of their stuff.
      Of course, Paizo also sells the D&D books from their web store.
      And when Pathfinder was still ascending (and the D&D fans were disputing the ICv2 ranking) Pathfinder was still atop 4e on the various Amazon charts.
    1. Greg Benage's Avatar
      Greg Benage -
      Quote Originally Posted by Windjammer View Post
      This is a useful list for tracking actual sales on all Amazon sites per month: http://www.novelrank.com/asin/0786965606
      Novelrank is likely worse than useless unless the book's sales are very low.

      http://louharper.blogspot.com/2013/0...s-useless.html
      http://absolutewrite.com/forums/show...s-Actual-Sales

      The numbers on a high-selling line like 5e are almost certainly wildly inaccurate.
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