D&D 5E Are D&D sales declining? Teos Abadia takes a look.

darjr

I crit!

He first talks about the old normal for D&D and other RPGs. A huge first burst in sales then continuing rapid decline. Using Bookscan data he then takes a look at how D&D is doing. The first thing is it’s still doing phenomenal and the sharp declines are not there. However he does conclude there is a slowing down in sales, a more gradual one.

I do wonder if it’s a post pandemic dip. It’ll be interesting to see what happens through 2024 and beyond.

Please read the article before commenting, there are interesting details and twists.
 

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Tony Vargas

Legend
My thought was that 5e's very deliberate pace of release should keep demand from flagging, and it shouldn't see the declines typical of past editions and RPG lines, when fire-hose strategies saturated small fanbases with a surfeit of product over a short timeframe, making good profits in the short term, but leading to new, better, editions or innovative new lines being needed to generate excitement, again.

The article's conclusion:
D&D is slowing. The decline isn’t disastrous like our hobby typically experiences. That is an accomplishment. RPG companies other than WotC would likely celebrate these results, let alone the continued sales volumes 5E is displaying.
 
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darjr

I crit!
Aw, come on! Give us a synopsis or at least a thesis statement.

My thought is that 5e's very deliberate pace of release should keep demand from flagging, and it shouldn't see the declines typical of past editions and RPG lines, when fire-hose strategies saturated small fanbases with a surfeit of product over a short timeframe.

The article's conclusion:
Oh! Both y’all got in before my first update! Lol!
 

Reynard

Legend
Everyone knows that there is going to be a saturation point, when everyone who wants to play D&D is playing D&D. There is also going to invetably be drop off: some will leave for other RPGs but most will just leave the hobby altogether becasue it was a brief love affair, or something to do during the pandemic, or they outgrow it, or whatever. So WotC is forced to sell more to a higher perecentage of players. Since we (and they) know books aren't going to do that, it is pretty likely that monetization is going to come through D&DB and the VTT (along with merch and D&D branded mobile apps, video games and other sundries).

Here's the thing, as long as they don't pull licenses from other VTTs, I don't care.
 



darjr

I crit!
The rather tiny decline is for Bookscan only, right?
So at the time when more people than ever are using digital tools there was nearly zero decline in physical books.

I would suggest that there hasn't been an actual decline at all.
Could be. It is arguable I think.

I’m surprised no one else has mentioned his other interning claims.

Maybe I’ll update the OP.

But I think he settles a couple debates.
 

bedir than

Full Moon Storyteller
It is arguable I think.
I don't know that it's arguable.

DnD Beyond alone already made Hasbro the revenue from the purchase within the first year.
They have partnerships with Roll20 and Fantasy Grounds too.

That less than 10% decline is more than made up in >100 million in revenue from digital sources
 

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