Is it just me? Tired of huge books

So I am all for value, and I can see the appeal of having all you need for a game in a single book. But am I the only person who finds that some of these honestly huge hardcovers, clocking in over 350pgs, are just too big? Like, too large to be practical? I know there are digital options, and I own many books in digital format. But I like having a library to gaze upon. I like having a book in my hands, to flip through the pages. However, I am afraid I am growing gunshy on buying some properly huge releases. I would rather have them broken up. To be blunt, if you told me that the core 3 for DnD was all going to be one book, or even that the PHB and DNG were being combined, I would balk.

Is it just me?
 

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Retreater

Legend
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Overly large books are not the status quo among indie games. For every The One Ring 2e there are tons of smaller format books (Blades in the Dark), shorter page counts (Heart), and excellent zine games (CBR+PNK currently on Kickstarter, or various Mothership modules).
 

Overly large books are not the status quo among indie games. For every The One Ring 2e there are tons of smaller format books (Blades in the Dark), shorter page counts (Heart), and excellent zine games (CBR+PNK currently on Kickstarter, or various Mothership modules).
I'm well aware there is a variety of offered formats. I'm just speaking to huge books.
Example. Coyote and Crow clocks in at nearly 500pgs. I am really drawn to the concepts and ethos of its creation but woof thats a big ol' book.
 



Jer

Legend
Supporter
No it's not just you. I'm also leery these days of giant tomes for games. It's usually an indication that the rules are going to be overly complicated - though occasionally it's just that they have a lot of stuff for the GM/Narrator/Director/whatever term they're using for the DM and it isn't that the game is actually super complicated.
 

CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
I like big beautiful bodacious books, but with one very important IF.

IF a book has content for both the GM and the Players, I want it to be split into two different books. Having to share a book at the table is a pain in the neck, and I never trust myself to "Stop Reading Here" when the pages tell me to do so. (I don't know anyone who does, honestly.) One book for each side of the screen, please.

Other than that? Giant books all the way, baby.
 


Crimson Terrain

Explorer
Publisher
Hmm, I dunno I like large books with tons of stuff to flip through. I don't usually jump to, "it's probably complicated", rather I usually think to myself, "wow there could be so many cool things in there."
 

Jer

Legend
Supporter
Since going mostly online, I'm finding PDFs are just fine. Cheaper, easier to copy relevant passages, easier to store, less likely to damage, searchable.
Even though I'm a librarian (or maybe because of it), I'm not missing physical books that much.
My issue with PDFs tends to be with publishers who don't create the PDFs to be used as PDFs. When I load up a PDF and my tablet cranks to render a single page I know I'm dealing with a publisher who hasn't considered that PDFs are used in a different way than books and have different constraints.

(One Kickstarter I backed recently sent out 600 meg PDFs for their books - it's basically the same PDF they sent to the printers I suspect. My poor tablet can render them, but when I want to use it as a reference it's sloooow.)
 

Bilharzia

Fish Priest
Outside of D&D, my understanding is that it is not viable for small RPG companies to produce multiple books, it makes everything too expensive. The everything-in-one approach will sell, multiple rule books will not, unless you are WOTC and then it's like printing money.
 



Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
So I am all for value, and I can see the appeal of having all you need for a game in a single book. But am I the only person who finds that some of these honestly huge hardcovers, clocking in over 350pgs, are just too big? Like, too large to be practical? I know there are digital options, and I own many books in digital format. But I like having a library to gaze upon. I like having a book in my hands, to flip through the pages. However, I am afraid I am growing gunshy on buying some properly huge releases. I would rather have them broken up. To be blunt, if you told me that the core 3 for DnD was all going to be one book, or even that the PHB and DNG were being combined, I would balk.

Is it just me?
I mean, there's a lot of small books too?

Just, like, get the ones you want?

I can sell you some one page adventures, 30-page games, or a 600 page rulebook. Choose your poison! It's all available to you!
 


I like big books when they are full of well-organized information I can use.

Less so when they are full of long-winded essays that I skim through while getting to the useful bits.
 

Li Shenron

Legend
So I am all for value, and I can see the appeal of having all you need for a game in a single book. But am I the only person who finds that some of these honestly huge hardcovers, clocking in over 350pgs, are just too big? Like, too large to be practical? I know there are digital options, and I own many books in digital format. But I like having a library to gaze upon. I like having a book in my hands, to flip through the pages. However, I am afraid I am growing gunshy on buying some properly huge releases. I would rather have them broken up. To be blunt, if you told me that the core 3 for DnD was all going to be one book, or even that the PHB and DNG were being combined, I would balk.

Is it just me?
Depends what you mean by "practical". I never use books at the gaming table so it doesn't bother me that they are a bit heavy. But sure beyond a certain size they become uncomfortable even for reading.
 

aramis erak

Legend
So I am all for value, and I can see the appeal of having all you need for a game in a single book. But am I the only person who finds that some of these honestly huge hardcovers, clocking in over 350pgs, are just too big? Like, too large to be practical? I know there are digital options, and I own many books in digital format. But I like having a library to gaze upon. I like having a book in my hands, to flip through the pages. However, I am afraid I am growing gunshy on buying some properly huge releases. I would rather have them broken up. To be blunt, if you told me that the core 3 for DnD was all going to be one book, or even that the PHB and DNG were being combined, I would balk.

Is it just me?
I don't mind a 300-400 page hardcover, provided the rules mechanics are under 150, and the rest is useful setting, bestiary, and equivalent.
Star Trek Adventures, for example, presumes the reader knows little about Trek. 376 pages. A hundred or so of setting explication.
Synopsizing from the TOC...
8pp of intro.
42 pp on the Federation
20 on what Starfleet does.
20 of basic mechanics.
50 of Char gen
56 of mechanics (Combat, worlds, equipment)
36 of ship mechanics,
24 of ship templates
40 of GMing.
36 adversaries - mixture of fluff and stats,
8 pages of adventure.

Mechanics exclusive of adversaries and ship stats: 162.
The GMing chapter restates and explicates a number of issues, brings it to 202 pages of mechanics, heavily illustrated, interspersed with fluff sidebars and examples.

About 80pp worth of setting material (20 of which are sidebars in other chapters.
72pp of stats...

It's a bit larger than my standard, but it's so lavishly illustrated that, between sidebars and art, it's roughly 150pp of actual mechanics.

Meanwhile, MegaTraveller - my go-to traveller edition - is around 200 pages of rules, and 80 pages of setting, across three books (which sold in one box), and about 40 pages more rules in the Ref's Companion, rules which really should be considered core.

Star Trek Adventures is much nicer to look at, to read, and has much better examples.
 

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