D&D General D&D Book Prices Are Going Up

Books going up to $69.95 but include digital bundles

WotC announced today that D&D books will be increasing in price this year.

Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants will be $59.99 as a preorder and $69.99 thereafter. These will apparently come as physical and digital bundles, so you won’t need to buy the D&D Beyond version separately.

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This space is dedicated to communicating clearly and transparently with our players- even when the topic isn’t particularly fun. Since the release of the 2014 D&D core rulebooks, we’ve kept book prices stable. Unfortunately, with the cost of goods and shipping continually increasing, we’ve finally had to make the decision to increase the price of our new release print books. We're committed to creating high-quality products that deliver great value to our players and must increase our prices to accomplish that.

This will go into effect starting with Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants and new releases after Glory of the Giants. Digital pricing is unaffected by this MSRP (manufacturer's suggested retail price) increase, as digital products don’t need to be printed or shipped. The increase also doesn’t impact backlist titles. While we can’t promise that there will never be a change to the prices of digital products and backlist titles, we have no plans to increase either.

Players who purchase the Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants digital-physical bundle through Dungeons & Dragons store can get the bundle for $59.95 for the entire preorder window, which is consistent with our current digital-physical bundle pricing. After the preorder window closes, digital-physical bundle prices will go to $69.95.
 

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It's very possible that the individual cost to produce a single HC book could be in the ~$4 range, once you spend the many thousands of dollars of costs to get the ball rolling. I doubt that it has anything to do with the initial costs, or even the average cost per copy, but perhaps the "once you have 19,999 copies, the cost of your 20,000th copy".
Yeah, but even then you still have warehouse storage costs, transportation from china and to retailers etc. with economy of scale I bet they can get the costs down to sub $10 but $4? If I had to guess I would say $4 is paper/ink.
 

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Jaeger

That someone better
Not surprising, but disappointing.

They wouldn't have to do it if there wasn't the vast precedence of Amazon and elsewhere that NEVER SELL THINGS FOR MSRP (and likely get a vast discount off of it).

So really, we FLGSs wind up the only ones stuck with MSRP, as we can't really make our margins without it. Meanwhile, in spite of the books printing $60+ on them (and our price being based on it), they'll be sold for ~$40 most of the time. Heck, sometimes Amazon sells the books for less than what we PAY for them from our distributors.

MSRP is something of a farce these days, which is why it's so darn high.

What's hilarious is that Wotc is paying the same price to print the books whether they go to a FLGS, or to Amazon...

FLGS get screwed because WotC can't be bothered to add a few people to their staff, take orders, and give FLGS the same price per unit.

And that's not even getting into the issues of Amazon using it's bookseller position as a virtual loss leader to draw people in to buy other higher-margin items...
 

Here ya go. Start watching around 1 hr 14 min to see what he says about the print cost. (A little before to see him discussing the quality of paper/binding/etc)
Cheers. Gonna have some margaritas.
Yeah the quality of binding is not great. However they do stand behind the product. I bought my PHB in 2014. The binding failed in 2020. I contacted customer service and sent a picture that was dated and they mailed me a new PHB at no cost.
 

Retreater

Legend
I call complete BS on the cost of a book being $4. Maybe strictly the paper and ink but not development, salaries, marketing, art, shipping from China, warehouse storage, shipping to retailers, etc…the list goes on and on.
“Digital pricing is unaffected by this MSRP (manufacturer’s suggested retail price) increase, as digital products don’t need to be printed or shipped." - their quote (not mine).
The "development, salaries, marketing, art" is the same for digital as it is print - but they don't need to increase the cost of digital.
This is just another step to get all of you in the VTT/DnD Beyond rental ecosystem.
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
What's hilarious is that Wotc is paying the same price to print the books whether they go to a FLGS, or to Amazon...

FLGS get screwed because WotC can't be bothered to add a few people to their staff, take orders, and give FLGS the same price per unit.

And that's not even getting into the issues of Amazon using it's bookseller position as a virtual loss leader to draw people in to buy other higher-margin items...
I think you may be about twenty years too late on this particular complaint. ;)
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
Yeah, but even then you still have warehouse storage costs, transportation from china and to retailers etc. with economy of scale I bet they can get the costs down to sub $10 but $4? If I had to guess I would say $4 is paper/ink.
Transportation is from U.S printers, not China, for most WotC books (juat spot checked Keys from the Golden Vault, my copy was printed in the U.S.). That drives prices up, though, as U.S. wages are paid at the printer.
 

Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
I never said I personally cared. I've just noted that adjusting for inflation the price has remained about the same. There's enough hyperbole and speculation about how evil WOTC is around here I thought maybe some facts would be a nice change of pace.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but you've decided you're not buying any new books no matter what, so why do you care?
Mostly just curious. I was waiting in a doctor's office.
 

Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
Is it a big deal or is it just the reality that many people don't really need books any more? Times change, an emphasis on digital has been a big part of their vision since 4E. The plans didn't work out back then, but the technology has come a long way. I agree that there is a concern for FLGS and I don't have a good answer for that. But they're also losing money to sites like HeroForge where you can get a customized mini printed or print them at home. Are we also going to rail about the evils of 3D printers as well?

Inflation affects all sorts of prices, it baffles me that people think it shouldn't affect the price of books. If they can't make a profit because their expenses, like everyone else's, are rising they'll go out of business. Prices increase all the time. I choose to accept reality for what it is so I can determine the course of action that makes sense to me.
Again, there is no way Hasbro isn't making a profit as it is.
 

“Digital pricing is unaffected by this MSRP (manufacturer’s suggested retail price) increase, as digital products don’t need to be printed or shipped." - their quote (not mine).
The "development, salaries, marketing, art" is the same for digital as it is print - but they don't need to increase the cost of digital.
This is just another step to get all of you in the VTT/DnD Beyond rental ecosystem.
I am sure WoTC would love everyone in DND Beyond with recurring fees. But I think the thought this is all just to force everyone into that ecosystem ignores the crazy levels of inflation over the last 18 months.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
I am sure WoTC would love everyone in DND Beyond with recurring fees. But I think the thought this is all just to force everyone into that ecosystem ignores the crazy levels of inflation over the last 18 months.
That's definitely behind the bundle sale price, but yeah, the price increase is inflation.

Honestly, while in some ways it would be better if they increased prices more slowly over a longer period of time, it's not like people wouldn't complain about a $2 increase every 2 years just as much.
 

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