Not your screen monkey (he/him)
Gotta love the armchair project management. It always knows better than the people actually in charge of the business.
Well, it hasn't been released yet. Expecting a product to have a "strong brand" 4 months prior to its release seems a little unreasonable.
So instead of actually responding to my question and offering a counterargument, you just have condescending and insulting sarcasm?
But don't take my word for it.
Let's actually look at the numbers.
Someone was converting Rise of the Runelords to 5e: https://docs.google.com/document/d/...fyGcotrIu7xuHUjF8/edit#heading=h.zdv649y4xlskThe wordcounts are 8500 and 5000 for parts 1 and 2. Now that book likely converts more than necessary, it's also pretty simple. So we'll go with 9000 words.
At Paizo's $0.07 per word ( http://www.enworld.org/forum/content.php?2301-What-s-a-Freelance-RPG-Writer-Worth ) that's a cost of $630 for the writer. It's as little as 15 pages or as much as 20 with art.
I tend to charge $8 per page for my development/design editing passes, but I'm sure Paizo pays more. Maybe $10 a page. So that's another $150 pages. So the cost to freelancers is $780.
Plus layout, which they have people on salary to do. This shouldn't be much more difficult than laying out a Player's Guide, which they give away. But we'll add an extra $125 for one day's work doing InDesign, as all the art assets, fonts, and the like would be done. Formatting should be quick for an experienced staff member.
That's a grand total of $905 in expenses.
Because, again, all the art has already been bought and paid for. All the text of writing the adventure is done.
At $5 per book, if they sell more than 181 copies, they're in the black. That's a tiny number of books. Or they could do a lump product that has conversions of full APs, at a cost of around $5500. Selling those for, oh, $20 moves the break-even number to 275. Still a tiny number, but you don't have to worry about people not buying the 5th or 6ths part of the AP.
275 copies is nothing. Even for this industry. That's a little more than a Electrum seller on DMsGuild/ DriveThru. And when Kickstarters can sell 10,000 copies, 275 is nothing. Even if they only move 1000 copies, which is a pretty small number, that's over $14,500 profit. But they reach a potential audience of 5,000 to 10,000 people. That's as much as $194,000 dollars.
That's all in addition to sales of the AP themselves, which might sell additional copies to interested 5e players who would otherwise skip them.
That's nice.How is my armchair management wrong? If it's wrong then how about actually pointing out the error rather than resulting to an ad hominem comment?Gotta love the armchair project management. It always knows better than the people actually in charge of the business.
That's nice.How is my armchair management wrong? If it's wrong then how about actually pointing out the error rather than resulting to an ad hominem comment?
True.There is a line between recognizing good long-term business decisions for a company and deciding what you want companies to make for you because you just really want it so bad. On the internet, that line is damn near invisible at times.
Right. That is true.Conversion is easy for anybody to do for themselves. For a company, however, that is an investment of time, resources, and production that could be used towards their own products rather than feeding someone else's.
You make two points here. One is related to options and alternatives to D&D. One is related to products that aren't recycled and nostalgia-drive.5e D&D may be popular. But we need stand alone systems out there to provide options, alternatives, and more innovative ideas regarding the way we play, how games are designed, and what products we should expect. I mean besides more recycled material and nostalgia-driven products. Regardless what I think of Pathfinder or Golarion, I am glad Paizo is willing to invest in themselves and their fans. You can change all you want, but until you take a turn you're all heading in the same direction.
I'd really like a citation for the "10 million a year" figure.I'll put things in perspective. Even a million dollar adventure is basically peanuts to Paizo. Peak Pathfinder broke 10 million a year. That's more money than the critical role kickstarter. Not all of the PF APs will convert that well mostly the earlier ones.
What if the world ends from an asteroid strike?What happens if WoTC eventually does 6E in a few years time?
If people are still playing 3.x they'll probably keep playing that system rather than switching to PF2. No game has a 100% conversion rate, so Paizo will need to steal a lot of players from 5e and other new players to round out their numbers.Online around 15% are still playing 3.X systems in Pathfinders twilight years. A new edition can invigorate that number. Even a smaller number than peak Pathfinder is still more than most kickstarters.
I'll likely buy the PF2 core rulebooks to review. Maybe...If PF2 tanks then 5E would be a nice plan b. Paizo also seems to have a good amount of goodwill no one seems to hate them. I'll probably buy some PDFs throw them some money. If it's really good might even play on occasion.
5e is a good and people do like different things. A small, small minority of people. Because D&D effectively IS the industry.See previous comment. Smaller publishers can do multiple lines they have everything to gain. Paizo doesn't.
You're also very set in your ways. I would like 5E Kingmaker, RotRL, and Skull and Shackles but I understand why they don't convert.
5Es good but people like different things.
if enough of the fans want something, then that's probably something the companies should make. That the question of conversion comes up even on non-Paizo focused forums every six months should be a gauge of interest.
Right. That is true.
I'm arguing that the investment is particularly low for a conversion. Production costs are virtually nil for a PDF. The resources are also low, as the art and page assets are done. The InDesign page masters are finished. And the time in regards to the company is best measured in hours rather than days.
And conversion is easy.
If I'm choosing to run a prepublished adventure, a large part of that is likely because time is a factor. I can't prep a homebrew. Conversion is another step slowing down the process.
You make two points here. One is related to options and alternatives to D&D. One is related to products that aren't recycled and nostalgia-drive.
I agree with both.
Pathfinder is a terrible alternative to a non-D&D system. Because it IS D&D. It may not be 5e, but there's a lot of overlap. There are so many other systems that do very different things than 5e, being non-fantasy or non-combat focused or story driven.
Also, alternative to nostalgia/recycled is exactly why I want the conversions. Because Paizo's worst AP is soooo much better than WotC's best. The WotC storylines are all pretty heavily and deeply flawed. And most eventually break down in terms of actual plot in favour of a sandbox or toolbox of ideas for the DM to craft a story.
Having some real competition in the adventure department might push WotC to actually improve in that regard.
I'd really like a citation for the "10 million a year" figure.
Regardless, current Paizo is a far cry from peak Paizo. They haven't had a significantly successful hardcover in a couple years. The novel line has ended. The comic line has ended. They've been shedding staff for a while: first moving people from Pathfinder to Starfinder, then four or five people have quietly "moved on" but not left the industry (trading a secure job for freelance work... with no healthcare). It seemed like Paizo was asking for volunteers to go rather than risking the negative press of laying people off...
They're very likely nowhere near 10 million now.
(Not that they're in dire straights or near failure. They've just shrunk down to a manageable size for an RPG company. They were huge previously.)
Regardless... even at a 10 million peak, a quick infusion of $200,000 is nothing to shrug at. That's a decent 2% increase of revenue. And that's just for a single conversion.
What if the world ends from an asteroid strike?
What if there's another Satanic panic and the RPG market bottoms out?
5e is doing great and is near it's apex. It's not going away any time soon. WotC's not going to rock the boat.
And even if a 6e does start coming, there'll likely be another playtest and a year or two notice, giving Paizo time to halt work on conversions.
If people are still playing 3.x they'll probably keep playing that system rather than switching to PF2. No game has a 100% conversion rate, so Paizo will need to steal a lot of players from 5e and other new players to round out their numbers.
And a great way to get people invested in their company is getting them playing their adventures and interested in the world and characters...
Which doesn't just sell APs and conversions. But those comic book collections. And novels. And minis.
(Also, Roll20 has 5e at 60%, Pathfinder at 10% and 3e at 4%. Fantasy Grounds has 5e at 67%, Pathfinder at 11% and no other 3e. Not really 15%... 67% is bordering on Microsoft level market dominance.)
I'll likely buy the PF2 core rulebooks to review. Maybe...
The playtest really did everything I didn't want from a second edition of Pathfinder. I wanted them to zig and they not only zagged but doubled down on the zaggage.
I have three RPG systems on my shelf already that I want to play in breaks from 5e games. There's just not enough hours in the day for me to play a game that rubs me the wrong way.
Which makes me sad because I would like to support Paizo in some way...
5e is a good and people do like different things. A small, small minority of people. Because D&D effectively IS the industry.
And, again, the people who do like different things, like want things in the opposite direction of Pathfinder. Because 5e is crunchy as heck. It's a heavy game with three large rulebooks.