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    Today, 02:29 AM
    "Bad" is so subject to interpretration, but if you're talking solely about box office flops then I'll go with Dark Phoenix. It wasn't great, but it was much better than the Last Stand and still a decent movie. I didn't feel like my childhood was destroyed like I did with the Last Stand. Here's a list of 52 box office flops:...
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Today, 01:35 AM
    This looks so good; I agree, more expansive and interesting than I originally imagined. Who do people think the young woman is? Obviously she's tied to the Borg somehow...maybe the first "Borg child" somehow?
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Friday, 19th July, 2019, 01:01 AM
    I agree probably notas well, but considering the large populations of Latin America and Asia, I think it is worth at least sending a line out to see if it catches. To address your specific points: We Americans do seem to be obsessed with violence, don't we? I find it rather disturbing how embedded the idea is in media culture that everything can be solved with violence (see just about any...
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 10:39 PM
    OK, fair enough. I shouldn't have said it wasn't at all interesting or implied that either of you are guilty of BadWrongInterest, but I was irked in that it is the only quasi-controversial thing in the article, and of course it happens to be the center of discussion. I was concerned that it would be yet another opportunity for people to be offended, feel entitled and/or mis-treated by WotC for...
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 12:36 PM
    The PDF thing is one tiny aspect of the article and not really a very interesting one, but oh well - let's fixate on that and ignore the rest.
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 02:56 AM
    This article is about a month old, so pardon me if it has already been discussed. It brings up a point that I haven't really considered all that much, that "the future of D&D is international." Chris Perkins said they're looking at South America and Asia, with Spanish, Portuguese, and Chinese languages a focus. Considering that there are almost 900 million native Mandarin speakers (and over a...
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    Sunday, 7th July, 2019, 04:16 AM
    Bump again! :D Allan.
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 11:34 PM
    First of all, I'd check out futuretimeline.net - you should find lots of good stuff there, and maybe even the answer to most of your questions if you comb through everything. But as far as details go, it is hard to answer because there are so many routes you could take. Scifi tends to be optimistic, but we currently live in a world that is perpetually on the cusp of disaster, great or small....
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 04:36 AM
    Well, the Beginner's Box maybe? But to address the second sentence, I don't think Pathfinder could possibly be anything resembling "strong" competition for D&D. It was to 4E, but that's a different story. My sense is that Pathfinder serves those wanting a crunchier game, and also loyalists - which is, of course, a Venn diagram. Part of the impetus behind starting this thread is that P2 seems...
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 10:22 PM
    ...very simply, it sucked. So I've had Wrath of Ashardalon for a few years and never played it. My daughters and I had played and enjoyed Dungeon maybe a dozen times over the last couple years, and I wanted to up our game, possibly in preparation for eventually transitioning to D&D. I thought Wrath might be a good step up. But we were all underwhelmed...it was just...boring. Game play was...
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 10:15 PM
    Of course. But you'll probably want to playtest the system extensively, at least if you want a quality finished product. You have more "creative autonomy" with the setting, but the system is best served ironed out with the help of others.
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 10:41 AM
    I'm not really sure if this belongs in the Pathfinder or D&D forums, so put it here in General as it touches upon a variety of topics and is more meta than system-specific. I don't know a lot of details about Pathfinder 2 and haven't been following whatever discussions might have happened over the year, but upon doing a cursory browse, I'm reminded of what happened with 4E. Like 4E, P2 seems...
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  • Mercurius's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 09:44 PM
    I don't think reducing options such as races and classes really simplifies the game: it just reduces options. The complexity of the game (relatively speaking) comes from all the little things you have to remember during game play, and the granularity to what degree the rules mimic everything that happens in the narrative environment. The easiest way to simplify is probably just to become more...
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Friday, 6th December, 2013

  • 05:04 PM - Cadence mentioned Mercurius in post Beyond Old and New School - "The Secret That Was Lost"
    Thanks to @Cyberen in #111 - "karmic currency" is giving me something to think about. And thanks to @Ahnehnois (#113) and @Mercurius (#114) for doing a nice job of commenting on agency and world building & story knowledge respectively (and making it so I didn't have to figure out how I wanted to say it!). In well designed rules there will be no clash because the places where each player (including the GM) has the power to dictate will be defined. This is one area where a lot of Indie games are really good, actually; their split of responsibility/power may be very non-traditional, but it is well defined. The rules say - as their primary function, in fact - who gets to decide what. Is this a fair extrapolation? When playing a game where RAW reserves ultimate authority to the DM as they see fit, the participants in a well run campaign that chooses to divide the power among the players and DM in a different way should explicitly agree on the division of power before the campaign begins [in order to avoid later difficulties].
  • 04:05 AM - Cadence mentioned Mercurius in post Beyond Old and New School - "The Secret That Was Lost"
    ...lls do matter the vast majority of the time. (Is it kind of like trying to have a cutscene in a video game without the players realizing it was one?) Does the GM have authority to rewrite PC backstories? To rewrite character sheets? To direct players how they are to spend PC build resources? As I play the game, the GM has a special role in relation to backstory and sceneframing. If the DM has a world design that that the player's choices clashes with, shouldn't the player change what they were going to do? ("But the king doesn't have any neices or nephews for you to be... how about duke so and so" or "there actually isn't anyone in you home village who could have taught you that... there aren't any fire sorcerers within a 1,000 miles of there" or "its bronze age tech... where would you get that Katana?"). On the other hand, I think I've always played with groups where the DM would incorporate any ideas the players had that didn't strongly clash with the world design (like @Mercurius talks about in the post just above this one). Why don't the players have comparable power? Why can't they exercise fiat to improve the game and the overall enjoyment of the game participants? EDIT: Removed a few things because @Mercurius said them more succinctly above. Semi-related, who does the tie-breaking when there is a disagreement because fiat attempts clash? Does the DM have greater knowledge of where things are going in general? If so, should that give them the tie-breaking vote when its otherwise split? Or should they just get it simply because the role of DM is different from that of the player and all of the players have agreed to make that person the DM?

Thursday, 5th December, 2013

  • 11:37 AM - Cyberen mentioned Mercurius in post Beyond Old and New School - "The Secret That Was Lost"
    Very nice thread ! Thank you, Mercurius, for opening it. Paying hommage to Boorman's Excalibur and Moorcock style was just icing on top of the cake :-) If I read well the excellent contributions of Manbearcat and, especially, pemerton, I feel there is very little difference between "old" and "new" school. I am more worried with what's in between... Let's dive into it : I fully endorse the claim that there is a very special imaginative process at work at the heart of "Fortune in the Middle" mechanics. Particularly, you have strong constraints on where you are coming from, and where you are getting to, and a lot of freedom concerning the journey from A to B. This architecture provides many features, as it provides some room between gamining mechanics (which can focus on fun, balance, ease of use, whatever) from narrative license, and empower each player with his own vision of "what happens" while guaranteeing everybody's on the same page concerning the final state. Of course, I have seen many people, on this board and elsewhe...

Saturday, 30th November, 2013

  • 10:51 AM - Minigiant mentioned Mercurius in post Beyond Old and New School - "The Secret That Was Lost"
    @pemerton I more or less agree. I find many people play 4e because it is a high herioc game and/or if is very player informative, two traits with indie origins from the time that came before it. @Mercurius That was the issue with D&D, period. The settings or the mechanics of any edition got in the way for a lot of gamers. Every edition was fixable with houserules but the amount of work varied and was discouraging after a point. Each edition has its own set of tropes, preferences, and D&Disms which favored some playstyles. Many splatbooks contain things created because the base systems don't let ideas invokes by the game don't work in the base system (such as the ranger or assassin). Like pemerton said, 4e was the edition best suited for Excalibur and LotR heroic play. If gave all the tools to play a certain play without relying on the DM to create a rule, making a subsystem, or judging your way. At the same time, it pushed out other styles of play. @Zardnaar I think you missed the point. The point was that the game gave access another playstyle, a more indie, heroic fantasy, player perspective style. The idea was they you roleplayed knowing almost everything your PC could do and w...

Monday, 25th November, 2013

  • 10:42 PM - steeldragons mentioned Mercurius in post What's Next for D&D's Campaign Settings? (And an idea/suggestion for WotC!)
    Invalidating the novels should be no concern for them at all. It is. I know it is. I know they want everything being all meshy and cross-promotey. I hate it. Write all the books you want. Tell all the stories you can conceive within the world...THAT'S what the game is about. Not telling some story that we are then all supposed to accept as law. Novels and the RPG should be COMPLETELY independent when it comes to world history/actions. That it is. Steel Dragons the great and powerful has spoken. We now return you to your regularly scheduled thread.:o PS EDIT: and yes Mercurius I think that sounds like a very good way for them to go...I just don't see it happening.

Wednesday, 20th November, 2013


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Monday, 11th February, 2013

  • 06:31 AM - Quickleaf mentioned Mercurius in post Help a party of five 20th level PCs defeat an Ancient Red Dragon
    Mercurius I can post an updated stat block later, but the biggest issue is going to be the high defenses of the level 30 solo compared to the attack bourse uses of the 20th level party. For that reason alone I would design the red not as a soldier but as a brute instead, and would have the star dragon blood grant attack bonuses. Also, I would strongly recommend customizing/tweaking the heck out of the statblocks of solos, even those in MV. Personally, I like AngryDM's boss monster blog about phased fights.

Wednesday, 26th December, 2012


Monday, 24th December, 2012

  • 06:02 PM - Challenger RPG mentioned Mercurius in post The "4E Crowd" - where will they go? What will they play?
    Excellent thread, Mercurius. I really enjoyed reading it. I guess I'd be classified as a Serious Gamer by the types you set out. However, I prefer that, as I have other interests and work. That said, I've been designing, writing, playing, and gaming for years. I've played all editions of D&D and practically every notable RPG on the face of the earth (and quite a number of obscure ones too). I'd love to attend more conventions, but where I live it's not terribly practical or economical. When 4E came out I wasn't completely satisfied. So I just wrote my own RPG system and now my groups play that. I look forward to seeing what 5E comes out with, I've enjoyed a number of 4E games, and I really respect Pathfinder for what they're doing. I know a gamer who loves 3E/3.5 with a loyalty which makes me a little jealous. I don't think I'll ever be able to get her to play anything else without serious effort. So, while I'm interested in seeing where 5E, Pathfinder, Monte Cook's, and the rest's games are headed; I've alway...


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Sunday, 25th May, 2014

  • 11:47 PM - Lanefan quoted Mercurius in post Hypothetical: What would your Ultimate (and Final) D&D Campaign Look Like?
    That's the slowest I've ever heard of. How often do you play? Pretty much every week, but we do jump back and forth between parties now and then. Also, I run two parties side-by-side on different nights, and there's sometimes crossover between them. It's a philosophy thing, too - around here we tend to see levelling up as just a pleasant side effect of playing the game; where some other groups see levelling up as the main reason for playing. Anyhow, I like the idea of slow advancement if in a long-term campaign with heavy player investment. But if playing a 1-3 year campaign, then advancement should be quicker, in my opinion, to give a sense of development and progress. But it really depends upon the tone and type of campaign. And again, it really depends upon frequency of play. I like the idea of level advancement every 2-3 months, or about 5 levels a year; that gives some sense of progress, but without losing the specialness of leveling up.Part of it also depends on how many playable (an...
  • 02:42 AM - Lanefan quoted Mercurius in post Hypothetical: What would your Ultimate (and Final) D&D Campaign Look Like?
    I agree that one level per session is too fast (for my tastes), but one every five sessions being "silly talk?"Yep, silly talk. :) I think you'll find yourself in the minority there. If I remember correctly WotC did a poll about leveling up and the most common preference was once per three sessons, with once per four just a bit behind, and once per two also receiving votes. Once per five sessions is on the slow side for most - and one level per year is a mutant snail-sloth.If you're referring to the pre-3e WotC survey, keep in mind that by design it excluded most long-term gamers (the responses of anyone who self-identified as age 35+ in the survey were thrown out) and thus skewed its results considerably toward a shorter-term game geared to younger players. If you're referring to a later poll, I haven't seen it. Over the long term I've found our games *on average* go up about a level a year. Individual characters invariably go faster, but death-and-replacements, retirements, etc. slow...

Saturday, 24th May, 2014

  • 04:21 PM - Dannyalcatraz quoted Mercurius in post Hypothetical: What would your Ultimate (and Final) D&D Campaign Look Like?
    I agree that one level per session is too fast (for my tastes), but one every five sessions being "silly talk?" I think you'll find yourself in the minority there. If I remember correctly WotC did a poll about leveling up and the most common preference was once per three sessons, with once per four just a bit behind, and once per two also receiving votes. Once per five sessions is on the slow side for most - and one level per year is a mutant snail-sloth. While I can't speak to the accuracy of their survey (or your recollection of it), I know our group progresses variably. Our one and only 4Ed campaign started in late 2009 or early 2010, and finished in late 2013. Our characters went from 1st to 6th. The prior 3.5Ed campaign made it to 13th in about the same amount of time. A lot of factors go into that.
  • 09:07 AM - Lanefan quoted Mercurius in post Hypothetical: What would your Ultimate (and Final) D&D Campaign Look Like?
    *Preferably starts at level 1 and spans at least 10 levels, hopefully 20 or more - a "full" campaign *Shouldn't take more than a year (probably somewhere in the 20-50 session range)Missed this in the OP. These two requirements are in complete opposition to each other. A true campaign barely gets nicely going in a year (about 45 sessions, on average), and to get to level 10 - about as high as our games usually get - takes more like 8-11 years. The listed requirements put a campaign on a pace to level up every 5 sessions at the slowest (10 levels over 50 sessions) and every session (!) at the fastest (20 levels in 20 sessions). And that's just silly talk. Lan-"if I-as-character had levelled in each played session I'd have blown past deity status long ago"-efan
  • 03:57 AM - DMMike quoted Mercurius in post Hypothetical: What would your Ultimate (and Final) D&D Campaign Look Like?
    Some general (soft) guidelines: *Preferably starts at level 1 and spans at least 10 levels, hopefully 20 or more - a "full" campaign *Shouldn't take more than a year (probably somewhere in the 20-50 session range) *Give us a sense of different episodes or chapters *Include major villains, monsters, quests, locations, adventure types, etc - even if just in broad strokes *Any edition That's about it. I think one way to look at is to ask: what campaign haven't you run that you've always wanted to run? And/or, what sort of campaign would combine all, or as many of, your favorite aspects of D&D? The ultimate D&D campaign? In one year? Phase 1: D&D 1. Each player makes a cleric, fighter, or magic-user. They crusade to save their town from goblins, only to discover that it wasn't their town. And those weren't goblins... Phase 2: AD&D. Players draw up new characters at level 5. They "awaken" to discover who they really are, which can be the same concept as the previous phase if desired. The...
  • 02:56 AM - Dannyalcatraz quoted Mercurius in post Hypothetical: What would your Ultimate (and Final) D&D Campaign Look Like?
    Thinking about campaign planning for 5E gave me the idea for this thread. The question--and challenge--is this: Imagine the following scenario. For whatever reason (doesn't matter) you are only going to plan and run one more full D&D campaign, then (for whaever reason) you're done with D&D. What would that campaign look like? Some general (soft) guidelines: *Preferably starts at level 1 and spans at least 10 levels, hopefully 20 or more - a "full" campaign *Shouldn't take more than a year (probably somewhere in the 20-50 session range) *Give us a sense of different episodes or chapters *Include major villains, monsters, quests, locations, adventure types, etc - even if just in broad strokes *Any edition That's about it. I think one way to look at is to ask: what campaign haven't you run that you've always wanted to run? And/or, what sort of campaign would combine all, or as many of, your favorite aspects of D&D? Have fun! I look forward to seeing the creative minds of ENWorld at ...

Friday, 23rd May, 2014

  • 03:27 PM - Li Shenron quoted Mercurius in post The Mystery of the 5E Dungeon Master's Guide
    My little joke aside, what more do we know? Does that last sentence ("Inside you'll find...") tell us everything we need to know, making this thread another exercise in speculative futility? Or have their been hints along the way of something else? Remember, this is 320 pages - a meaty tome for the DMG. Magic items are back, which accounts for a lot, and presumably there will be some modular options ("optional game rules"), but I suppose I'm wondering about the first couple parts - world building, adventure design, etc. And will there be setting info and/or example adventures? What say you? I am not counting much on world building and adventure design guidelines, because they can take a lot of space but be so generic that there's a risk they make for a good read once. The optional rules and modules are the biggest deal about the 5e DMG. It all matters which ones will make it to the DMG, among the many modules that were either shown in the playtests or announced in L&L: will battlesys...
  • 02:39 PM - DMZ2112 quoted Mercurius in post The Mystery of the 5E Dungeon Master's Guide
    Very well explained, but I think you need some stuff that fits in-between those extremes in a "proper" DMG, because D&D is a social game played with humans, not a purely mechanical system. What do you mean? ...Oh, you're talking about players! Now that you mention it, I suppose they are human, yes. Physiologically. My main fear with the DMG is that it will be basically 30% optional "modular" rules, 30% magic items, 20% optional races/classes/etc., and 20% hard mechanical details with no proper explanation of how to use them in a game! Hopefully that isn't the case. Even DIY stuff usually tells you when X tool is appropriate and not Y and so on. Now this gets me excited and harkens back to the Greatest RPG Product of All Time, the 1st edition DMG. I share Ruin Explorer's careful optimism. If you follow mearls ' Twitter feed, right now it reads like a (short) laundry list of optional rules systems that are getting DMG coverage. I'm sure he has not mentioned them all. I am excited about...
  • 02:39 PM - Blackbrrd quoted Mercurius in post 5E PHB on Amazon $30 Pre-Order
    I believe it was actually $57 for the 4E gift box, although for some reason it is no longer in my Amazon history so I can't check for sure. I remember seeing the offer at http://dnd4.com/ and they still have it up there, the price being 66.12$. I believe that was the original price. I really do hate shipping costs. It costs about 8$ a book from the US*. Which is actually cheaper than it would be if I wanted it shipped in Norway. That would probably be around 10-15$. *I live in Norway.
  • 02:08 PM - Ruin Explorer quoted Mercurius in post The Mystery of the 5E Dungeon Master's Guide
    What are you, the screenwriter of Conan the Barbarian? It certainly seems like a quote that could be backed by the Conan soundtrack (best soundtrack ever btw), but I doubt that he is either John Milius or Oliver Stone, and our forums are poorer for it!
  • 09:37 AM - delericho quoted Mercurius in post The cost of D&D 5E (it ain't so bad!)
    Remember that Amazon is the probalby the biggest single avenue for sales for WotC books, so they had to take Amazon's pricing into account with their MSRP. So let's say they priced it what you expected/hoped to begin with: 35 or 40 bucks. 40% of those prices is $21 and $24 respectively. Dial those back to 2008 prices and we're talking $19 and $22, which is kind of cheap, no? So WotC priced it at $50 fully knowing that Amazon would be charging $30. Why on Earth would WotC care what discounts Amazon offer? They (WotC) get the same money either way, so the only effect of a discount is that Amazon are denying themselves money to get a sale. (Which, AFAIK is still Amazon's business model - make virtually no profit, but hoover up all the sales to become the biggest guys around.) (Edit: reading it back, that last paragraph feels much more snarky than I'd intended. Sorry. I meant it as an honest question: why would WotC care, if they're getting the same money either way?) The major effect of th...
  • 04:47 AM - Dungeonosophy quoted Mercurius in post The War of the Lance in an apocalyptic magitech Faerun...but named Naefur.
    Thanks for the thoughts everyone. I'm not a fan of because generic stuff is boring. I don't want (fill in the name here), I want the Town of Herpderp, and all the unique things that Herpderp offers, because I can (fill in the name here) myself. I want Baldur's Gate and the Free City and Sigil, those places are unique and special and interesting. (Proper Noun) cannot be as interesting as that. I like the idea of WotC unabashedly having and using their own settings and names, but rather with a clear emphasis and underlying--and repeated--declaration that "this is our world, you can use it if you want, but it is more fun to create your own - for guidelines on that see Part X, or Y book." I agree that generic adventures, with no coherent setting behind them, can be boring. I'm not suggesting that more generic adventures be published. I'm suggesting that Forgotten Realms adventures (or Dragonlance, Greyhawk, ...) have: 1) All proper names in parentheses. Not blanks ___...Parentheses. ...

Thursday, 22nd May, 2014

  • 06:20 PM - Olgar Shiverstone quoted Mercurius in post The cost of D&D 5E (it ain't so bad!)
    By the way, the Player's Handbook is now at $29.97 on Amazon. I haven't checked the others. Yeah, but what I find curious is that the MM and DMG are currently $40.55 and $38.86 respectively yet all three books have the same list price, and are essentially the same length and material input. Intentional pricing on WotC's part, or volume-based supply-demand at Amazon?
  • 04:10 PM - Ruin Explorer quoted Mercurius in post The Mystery of the 5E Dungeon Master's Guide
    My little joke aside, what more do we know? Does that last sentence ("Inside you'll find...") tell us everything we need to know, making this thread another exercise in speculative futility? Or have their been hints along the way of something else? Remember, this is 320 pages - a meaty tome for the DMG. Magic items are back, which accounts for a lot, and presumably there will be some modular options ("optional game rules"), but I suppose I'm wondering about the first couple parts - world building, adventure design, etc. And will there be setting info and/or example adventures? What say you? I'm guessing we'll see ALL the major modular rules and elements in the DMG, none in the PHB (optional stuff like Feats sure, but not tactical rules etc.), which may take up a lot of space. We know some races will be in there - Warforged, fr'ex. Again could take a lot of space. Add in magic items and "the usual DMG stuff", and that's probably an easy 320 pages.
  • 04:05 PM - delericho quoted Mercurius in post The Mystery of the 5E Dungeon Master's Guide
    My favorite part about the 2E DMG was the class designer. I know, it didn't work great... Now that's an understatement! :)
  • 03:55 PM - TwoSix quoted Mercurius in post The cost of D&D 5E (it ain't so bad!)
    The Starter Set is already a loss leader. To ask the core trinity--their biggest cash cow--to be a loss leader as well is asking too much. Anyhow, the PHB is now $30 on Amazon - that's close enough to your figure, I think. $30 was definitely the magical price point for me. Starter Set and PHB pre-ordered. I'm thinking the Starter Set will be a good way to teach my almost 8-year-olds to play.
  • 03:21 PM - delericho quoted Mercurius in post The cost of D&D 5E (it ain't so bad!)
    'Tis the way of things, for better or worse - and it isn't anything new. Remember, the 4E trinity was originally sold for $57 on Amazon. Yep. For some years now, Amazon has been able to sell and deliver the 'big' RPG products to the end-customer for less than it costs a brick'n'mortar store to get them in stock in the first place, due primarily to economies of scale. Faced with that, B'n'M stores can't compete, at least on price. Now what I'd like to see is WotC give special discounts and encouragements for brick and mortar stores. For instance, how about a limited edition adventure that comes free with an in-store purchase of the DMG? Even that probably doesn't work, since eBay makes these available for people who really want them. What's probably more effective, and what WotC already do (to their credit) is arrange for B'n'M stores who sign up to one of their programmes to get the books about 2 weeks early. So people who don't want to wait can get the jump on everyone else... but hav...
  • 03:18 PM - DMZ2112 quoted Mercurius in post D&D Multimedia Poll - What Else Should Wizards Do?
    That said, don't make it suck. And please no nerdy in-jokes with wink-wink, breaking-of-the-fourth-wall malarkey. Nuts to that. If the next D&D movie doesn't open in a musty cinderblock basement with a case of Mountain Dew in the corner, no sale!
  • 03:02 PM - Thaumaturge quoted Mercurius in post The cost of D&D 5E (it ain't so bad!)
    By the way, the Player's Handbook is now at $29.97 on Amazon. I haven't checked the others. Man, that is brutal for brick and mortar stores. I've got the money, and sympathy for the stores. But $20 off? Brutal. Thaumaturge.

Wednesday, 21st May, 2014

  • 10:01 PM - Ichneumon quoted Mercurius in post Will they release tidbits to build anticipation?
    I've got a serious case of Next Blue Balls (can I say that here? ;)). But seriously - anything is good as I'm very excited! I suppose I wan.t to see how it differs from the playtest rules Never mind, Fifth Edition is com... on it's way. :) Some informative L&Ls and the odd glance at the content, that'll do nicely.


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