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WotC Hasbro Bets Big on D&D

During today's 'Hasbro Fireside Chat', Hasbro's Chris Cocks, chief executive officer, and Cynthia Williams, president of Wizards of the Coast and Digital Gaming mentioned D&D, and about betting big on its name. This was in addition to the Magic: The Gathering discussion they held on the same call. The following are rough notes on what they said. D&D Beyond Leaning heavily on D&D Beyond 13...

During today's 'Hasbro Fireside Chat', Hasbro's Chris Cocks, chief executive officer, and Cynthia Williams, president of Wizards of the Coast and Digital Gaming mentioned D&D, and about betting big on its name. This was in addition to the Magic: The Gathering discussion they held on the same call.

Hasbro.jpg


The following are rough notes on what they said.

D&D Beyond
  • Leaning heavily on D&D Beyond
  • 13 million registered users
  • Give them more ways to express their fandom
  • Hired 350 people last year
  • Low attrition
What’s next for D&D
  • Never been more popular
  • Brand under-monetized
  • Excited about D&D Beyond possibilities
  • Empower accessibility and development of the user base.
  • Data driven insight
  • Window into how players are playing
  • Companion app on their phone
  • Start future monetization starting with D&D Beyond
  • DMs are 20% of the audience but lions share of purchases
  • Digital game recurrent spending for post sale revenue.
  • Speed of digital can expand, yearly book model to include current digital style models.
  • Reach highly engaged multigenerational fans.
  • Dungeons and Dragons has recognition, 10 out of 10
  • Cultural phenomenon right now.
  • DND strategy is a broad four quadrant strategy
  • Like Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings or Marvel
  • New books and accessories, licensed game stuff, and D&D Beyond
  • Huge hopes for D&D
What is success for the D&D Movie
  • First big light up oppourtunity for 4th quadrant
  • Significant marketing
  • They think it’ll have significant box office
  • It has second most viewed trailer at Paramount, only eclipsed by Transformers
  • Will be licensed video games, some on movies
  • Then follow up other media, TV, other movies, etc.
  • Bullish on D&D.
 

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Zardnaar

Legend
Let's us also not forget a growing market that didn't even exist 10 or 15 years ago, the luxury market. Now that more geeks have grown into lawyers, realtors, and company owners, there is evidently a market for $$$ products. It a "game" were making less of thing might be better.

Getting in on that market also comes with social cachet ... I think?

When people asked me if D&D would ever go mainstream, my answer back was, "when it make enough money for people to notice." It's just how our culture works. At some point, we just might consider D&D to be the NFL and smaller game companies to be like college football.

MtG did that with $1000 booster packs.

In theory it's fine but it does lead to resentment, jealousy etc. Or "I need this to play and can't afford it".

Perception is reality and it can lead to rich man's Matt Mercer effect.

And if you're trying to attract players with a basic/cheap version of D&D and the other DM has all the expensive minis, terrain etc well yeah.
 

Oofta

Legend
For those who don't get why people are concerned you're forgetting the chat was because if what has been happening on the MtG side of things.

I don't think there's a problem making money via better product but there's a difference between that and bilking your customers.

As I said it's essentially what game development studios have been doing and WotC is in this position exactly because of MtG.

And the whole thing essentially boiled down to "ya boo sucks to be you".

So it's not so much a hypothetical they may do this but "look at how they're 💨 nimg magic".

Well, there's a whole other thread about how f'ed MtG is. I just don't understand why people are assuming the worst of WOTC because they're emphasizing that D&D is profitable and there's other markets they can expand into.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Well, there's a whole other thread about how f'ed MtG is. I just don't understand why people are assuming the worst of WOTC because they're emphasizing that D&D is profitable and there's other markets they can expand into.

Same company using similar language in a chat about MtG where they basically said "F the players full steam ahead".

In a vacumn you're kinda right but context and what's going on with MtG and what the chat was actually about.
 

Oofta

Legend
MtG did that with $1000 booster packs.

In theory it's fine but it does lead to resentment, jealousy etc. Or "I need this to play and can't afford it".

Perception is reality and it can lead to rich man's Matt Mercer effect.

And if you're trying to attract players with a basic/cheap version of D&D and the other DM has all the expensive minis, terrain etc well yeah.

I'll admit that I have little to no knowledge of MtG other than playing one game when it first came out long ago. But it seems like there's a big difference between a competitive card game and D&D. They can't hand out +5 vorpal swords because you purchased a bonus pack, the game doesn't work like that.

I don't see what the fuss is. If they start making gold plated dice or a D20 with a gem in it (because that worked so well), nobody's going to force you to buy them. That D20 isn't going to roll better, or if it does it will soon be banned. If they start publishing a book a month like they did for a while with 4E or start cranking out stuff materials at the rate we saw in the TSR days maybe there's cause for concern.

But making more money from movies and licensing? Maybe making a AAA video game? How does that hurt me?
 


MtG did that with $1000 booster packs.

In theory it's fine but it does lead to resentment, jealousy etc. Or "I need this to play and can't afford it".

You can spend 1000 dollars for a while in magic and get cards that heavily improve your deck. Those cards are not tournament legal. And if you play for fun, you can ask to not use cards with wrong backsides. Or you can just use proxies.

I am a bit jealous about the beadle and grim boxes and have thought a few times to buy them... but I could resist.
But if they did not exist, it would make no difference for me.
I am really buffled, why you can freak out about something that just has no effect on your personal experience.

Or did I miss something big here?
 



Hussar

Legend
You can spend 1000 dollars for a while in magic and get cards that heavily improve your deck. Those cards are not tournament legal. And if you play for fun, you can ask to not use cards with wrong backsides. Or you can just use proxies.

I am a bit jealous about the beadle and grim boxes and have thought a few times to buy them... but I could resist.
But if they did not exist, it would make no difference for me.
I am really buffled, why you can freak out about something that just has no effect on your personal experience.

Or did I miss something big here?
Nope. You missed nothing. It's the same old voice voicing the same old song and dance that's been on repeat for about fifty years. Seriously, you can go back and stroll through the forums and you'll see the same posts over and over and over again. It wasn't true then and it's not true now.

People just absolutely cannot believe that a company can just be doing good business without massively screwing over their customers.
 

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