Att: WotC - Replacing PDF's
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  1. #1
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    Att: WotC - Replacing PDF's

    So, I was one of those who were very sad when WotC decided to pull the plug on their PDF's. I completely understand why WotC think they needed to do it, but that doesn't change the fact that I lost a very handy tool for my work as a dungeon master.

    Thank god I could still cancel the order on the e-book reader I had made - A few weeks later and I would have been SOL.

    Anyway, this thread is primarily here to remind our good friends at WotC that we still expect an alternative, as we were promised. It would also be mighty nice if we at some point could get an idea on how this project is coming along.

    It's now been almost 4 months (okay, 3½ at least) since the PDF's were withdrawn, and I think it is about time that we start hearing what WotC are cooking up.

    While we are waiting for an answer, I guess we could talk about what possibilities there are, as to replace the PDF's. I must admit that I know very little of these things, so my best suggestion would be to re-release PDF's again, but I am guessing that won't fly ><

    Please keep any bitching or complaining about the fact that the PDF's were removed out of the thread. In general, lets try to keep the WotC-hate out of this thread.

  2. #2
    Unfortunately, EW's too darn slow to get the kind of WOTC attention this thread needs.

    But I agree Jack99! It's time for us to hear something about the alternatives they said they were looking into.

  3. #3
    Yep I'll put my 2cp in as well. Please give us back PDFs or something similar... that can be used off-line and read on my eReader!

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    Quote Originally Posted by catsclaw227 View Post
    Unfortunately, EW's too darn slow to get the kind of WOTC attention this thread needs.
    No worries. I have absolutely no qualms keeping this thread on the first page until we get an answer.

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    Off-line, rights-protected access is going to be tough unless they use DRM technologies, which are both a PitA to use and lacking in uncracked standards. I really hope they don't go this route. I'm always going to buy a paper copy of the book and I am not going to buy another electronic copy for the convenience, even though I have plenty of disposable cash.

    On-line access would be preferable to me - I always have access to the Internet when I game. Roll an indexed, searchable copy of the books into DDI and unlock the feature when I buy the access. Rather than make me pay full, or close to full price for the PDF, charge me $0.99 a month per book. Give me a volume discount or attractive bundles to encourage me to "rent" the content from you.

  6. #6
    Edit: Do ho ho, way to go silly ice fairy.

    *aheam.*

    The good points of .pdfs are thus:

    1) Offline viewing.
    2) Easy to grab bookmarks.
    3) Easy access to multiple .pdfs at one time.
    4) No stupid digital rights ownership "LOL IT'S NOT YOURS ANYMORE" BS.

    Wizards would, in my opinion, at the very least, have to be able to do all that.
    Last edited by ProfessorCirno; Thursday, 30th July, 2009 at 01:27 AM.

  7. #7
    My personal, uneducated guess is that we won't get an alternative. Any alternative will cost money, and there are plenty of other areas that money can be spent (like the Campaign Suite they are working on). They would either have to re-direct technical people from DDI to the "PDF-alternative" or direct money and still some technical personhours to an outside solution. Either way, an alternative to selling PDFs will detract from other projects and it's clear that those other projects are higher priority for them.

    PDFs are cheap because they are already doing 95%+ of the work with every new book they produce. (And all or nearly all of the older books were done years ago.)

    So, I see the two possibilities are:
    -- No electronic versions of the books beyond the DDI Compendium (and therefore nothing for pre-4e or for non-mechanics), or
    -- They take the time to look at the data and realize that removing PDF sales doesn't slow piracy significantly, that any alternative is too costly to bother with, and therefore they resume PDF sales.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kenmarable View Post
    -- They take the time to look at the data and realize that removing PDF sales doesn't slow piracy significantly, that any alternative is too costly to bother with, and therefore they resume PDF sales.
    This would be my preferred solution. I plan to order an electronic reader capable of displaying PDFs soon (not the Kindle DX - the even larger iRex 1000S), and it is aggravating that I can no longer buy classic D&D supplements to read on it.

    While I buy enough gaming PDFs from other publishers to make the device worthwhile, it's sad that I can't get PDF-form ebooks from the industry leader (with the exception of their new issues of Dragon and Dungeon, which they don't have any problems with publishing as PDFs for some reason).

    My apartment is already overcrowding with books, gaming and otherwise, and I want to cut down on the number of printed books I buy. Thus, I will think twice before buying any new gaming book that takes up more shelf space - and with PDFs I wouldn't have this much hesitation.

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    And, since many of the pdfs pulled were from older editions, their online subscription thing isn't going to cut it.

  10. #10
    I'm all for the idea of rolling the fluff from the books into DDI. I'd pay up to $100 a year for access to the entire library. In subscription form I think HTML would be my preferred format, especially if it was well-linked.

    Maybe everyone isn't on board the subscription train, but most heavy PDF users would probably go for it. When I look at my stack of old 3.5 books the price works out to be competitive. $100 is three hardbacks and I have enough to cover about 5-6 years of a subscription at my imagined rate. Maybe I don't get to leaf through my library when I get nostalgic and my subscription has lapsed, but I don't really do that with the books I have.

    So please keep printing books for those that want them. I'm ready to fully embrace digital. Take the next step and offer the full content to subscribers.

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