Is TTRPGing an "Expensive Hobby"

I suspect this is their way of saying "This is pointless" or, put another way, threadcrapping.
I wondering why people are complaining about high prices when there are so many ways to circumvent them?

How some people have no idea why something costs the price it is? If eighty bucks is too much for you, you can buy complete rpg books for around twenty. The reason they cost more is lots of art, hardbacking, lots of demanding writing, lots of color, and lots of pages.

I'm wondering what solutions people have to the cost of TTRPGs? Do you want them to become non profit organizations or open source volunteer run things (like Wikipedia)??
 
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Thomas Shey

Legend
I wondering why people are complaining about high prices when there are so many ways to circumvent them?

How some people have no idea why something costs the price it is? If eighty bucks is too much for you, you can buy complete rpg books for around twenty. The reason they cost more is lots of art, hardbacking, lots of demanding writing, lots of color, and lots of pages.

I'm wondering what solutions people have to the cost of TTRPGs? Do you want them to become non profit organizations or open source volunteer run things (like Wikipedia)??

I think you're assuming they have a solution they expect. Venting is a thing.
 

MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
Online does change it (if online is acceptable; for some people its a nonstarter because they simply don't enjoy playing that way) but if it isn't for any reason (some places have the most terrible internet you could imagine) then the available groups within a distance can be limited. Not every lives in a big city (though you and I clearly do).
Until recently, I lived on a compound in country with terrible Internet infrastructure, visiting my family in MN every few months. The internet provided by my employer was better than what the average person in the country had access to, but there are not many places in the US that would much worse. Some VTTs were unplayable due to bandwidth and various site security blocks (playing the VPN game was a constant struggle just to get access to many sites). Roll20 was surprisingly stable. Hosting Foundry on the Forge worked well because Forge will serve assets from the closest server geographically. It was usually me that would have the occasional issue, but bandwidth issues on my part didn't affect my players other than occasionally having to wait until I could refresh my screen. I ran Discord on my phone on a crappy cell data connection, but Discord does an amazing job and keeping voice quality acceptable even on subpar connections, which is the main reason we use it. Now that I'm back in the states with a 1 GB connection, I'm in internet heaven. The front page of EN World would take minutes to load in my prior location. Its instant here.

I'm not dismissing internet concerns, for many they are very real. But I do think people over emphasize internet issues in discussions relating to VTTs. It depends on the VTT you use and how fancy you want to get, but it is possible to play online with a satisfactory experience with subpar Internet. But I understand that for many people the even minimal hassle isn't worth it.
 


MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
I wondering why people are complaining about high prices when there are so many ways to circumvent them?

How some people have no idea why something costs the price it is? If eighty bucks is too much for you, you can buy complete rpg books for around twenty. The reason they cost more is lots of art, hardbacking, lots of demanding writing, lots of color, and lots of pages.

I'm wondering what solutions people have to the cost of TTRPGs? Do you want them to become non profit organizations or open source volunteer run things (like Wikipedia)??
Well some people, @Micah Sweet comes to mind, don't care much about the expensive, fancy art, and layouts and would be happy with well-written rules in a mostly text format, which would bring down the price. That's not what I'm looking for in a physical TTRPG book, and the look and feel of the books seem to be important to many--if not the majority--of consumers, but it is not an unreasonable preference. My preference would be to have expensive and beautiful books and then text-focused digital versions optimized for e-readers and various screen sizes. I'm not going to get that in most cases, because it just isn't going to be profitable to the publishers. My saying that I would like that isn't the same as saying that publishers are evil price-gougers.

While I've seen the occasional post over the years where people will post angry comments about price gouging. I've not noticed that in this thread.
 

The Sigil

Mr. 3000 (Words per post)
No, but if you bought everything WotC printed in 8 years, it would be more expansive--and more expensive. ;-)
I suppose that depends on both "which 8 years" and "when did you buy them" and "how did you buy them?"

I would posit that buying, say, the years 2000-2007 (third edition) would have cost you less had you bought them in print then than trying to assemble that same print catalog now. But it would cost you less now to assemble their catalog in PDF format both in absolute dollars (last I looked the PDFs on DTRPG were about half the MSRP of the originals) and inflation-adjusted dollars.
 

How some people have no idea why something costs the price it is? If eighty bucks is too much for you, you can buy complete rpg books for around twenty. The reason they cost more is lots of art, hardbacking, lots of demanding writing, lots of color, and lots of pages.
You can get the complete works of Shakespeare in a nicely bound volume for $30. You can get big art museum style books with full color, high resolution images (some of which have hefty reproduction fees) for $50. So, compared to other books, yes, $80 is expensive.

It's also expensive for the point you mention--you can spend $20 and get a complete rpg system. Heck, you can $3 to get a system like knave, print it out at home, and all you need is a set of dice. So, compared to the baseline of what the hobby can cost, $80 is expensive.

tldr and to the point of the thread: TTRPGs at their core are very cheap, but there is a consumerist segment of the fanbase that manages to make it expensive relative to its baseline cost.
 
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Thomas Shey

Legend
Until recently, I lived on a compound in country with terrible Internet infrastructure, visiting my family in MN every few months. The internet provided by my employer was better than what the average person in the country had access to, but there are not many places in the US that would much worse. Some VTTs were unplayable due to bandwidth and various site security blocks (playing the VPN game was a constant struggle just to get access to many sites). Roll20 was surprisingly stable. Hosting Foundry on the Forge worked well because Forge will serve assets from the closest server geographically. It was usually me that would have the occasional issue, but bandwidth issues on my part didn't affect my players other than occasionally having to wait until I could refresh my screen. I ran Discord on my phone on a crappy cell data connection, but Discord does an amazing job and keeping voice quality acceptable even on subpar connections, which is the main reason we use it. Now that I'm back in the states with a 1 GB connection, I'm in internet heaven. The front page of EN World would take minutes to load in my prior location. Its instant here.

I'm not dismissing internet concerns, for many they are very real. But I do think people over emphasize internet issues in discussions relating to VTTs. It depends on the VTT you use and how fancy you want to get, but it is possible to play online with a satisfactory experience with subpar Internet. But I understand that for many people the even minimal hassle isn't worth it.

I just know prior to us getting FiOS here, we struggled constantly with our remote games; we'd get drop outs, sound problems, and more. And that was just because we only had DSL.
 


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