I have been unable to verify any of this, so consider this no more than a "rumour report". However I'm hearing that layoffs have occurred at WotC this week, and that one of the victims is art director Mark Painter. Again, all rumour at this point.
And...a bunch of non-TRPG stuff you've apparently ignored for a yearCan I just point out that I ****ing hate the word "restructuring" along with most corporate BS speak. Also, with the rate at which they are releasing material, I'm surprised that ANYONE is left on the team. Mearls seems like he's capable enough to delegate work to other companies so wizards doesn't have to actually do anything with D&D, as far as making new adventures. As far as I understand it the adventures are created by other companies, and wizards themselves only put out 1 document a month of a few playtesting mechanics. They don't seem to want to give us an OGL because one of their guys has been in a courtroom for the better part of a year. Whats the point of even having ANYONE on the team anymore other than Mearls, an editor, and some sort of Quality assurance person?
Outsource and contract artists, contract adventure modules, write up a few rules every month and then whenever they decide to release a rule books (which we have no idea what they are thinking) have the editor do layouts of it, if any sort of rulebook is even in the works. I mean, I'm happy with 5e at this point with just the 3 books. I don't even really understand why they have their department open anymore at wizards. If they need a team for some projects, then that's certainly news to me. I have heard no such plans, so after a year of being tightlipped I'm going to have to go with what I know they are doing. Essentially a small playtest of rules every month.
All reports I'm aware of have Magic doing really, really well. The selling of the Magic card plant has much less to do with the game doing poorly than a desire for a different business plan where Wizards/Magic outsources its printing (as it did in the early days) rather than be directly responsible for it. It very likely has very little to do with what's going on in D&D-land.
Just went to their catalog page. Here's what I sawAnd...a bunch of non-TRPG stuff you've apparently ignored for a year
I mean, let's assume you hate Dragon+. OK...but still, LOOK at what they are advertising there. Notice anything?
I blame the 'invisible hand' of the market.As much as I appreciate and respect Mike Mearl's work on 5e, I really think D&D has no business being a one man show. As the biggest name in the business it deserves a minimum of 3 or 4 people (I'd prefer more than that) giving it a good portion of their attention. I mean, this is ridiculous to me, considering the size of the team in previous editions.
I think it's about time a billionaire gaming enthusiast buys the brand from WotC/Hasbro so it can have real support (and I'm not talking about a glut of products, I'm actually reasonably satisfied with the slow release rate). As it is now there is always this sense of trepidation that Hasbro is going to just say, "Why do we need anyone working on it anymore?" and just close up shop on D&D, reprinting the current books according to demand. I don't feel they (Hasbro) deserve to be custodians of D&D. They don't "get it."