Release Day Second Edition Amazon Sales Rank

Green Onceler

Explorer
Yes, you could just say ' use the SRD' but I've never actually met anyone who does that.
Really? Every Pathfinder player I know uses the SRD all the time.

I own a lot of Pathfinder books. But it is so much more practical to just search things out on the SRD rather than plodding through a huge pile of dead tree for that specific feat or spell you want.
 
Blimey. I’ve never met a Pathfinder player who doesn’t.
So, there are people who use the SRD. Mind you, if everyone uses the SRD how are Paizo going to make any money from the core rulebook? That doesn't sound very intuitive to me. It might have worked for 1e but Paizo need to sell core rulebooks now.
 

Green Onceler

Explorer
Mind you, if everyone uses the SRD how are Paizo going to make any money from the core rulebook?
I own a lot of Pathfinder books. But it is so much more practical to just search things out on the SRD rather than plodding through a huge pile of dead tree for that specific feat or spell you want.
Like this, I guess. I could theoretically play for free. However, I want to support the company who created the game which I am enjoying. So, I buy books and use the SRD. Like every other player I know.
 
Like this, I guess. I could theoretically play for free. However, I want to support the company who created the game which I am enjoying. So, I buy books and use the SRD. Like every other player I know.
O.K., question answered.

The reason why I've never seen anyone use the SRD is because, in my neck of the woods (London, UK), Pathfinder has been wiped out of existence by 5e and every 5e player I've seen has a copy of the PHB. New players have their own copies of the PHB. Everyone wants to play 5e. I'm sure Pathfinder is still being played but not in any of the major meetups I'm aware of.

Does PF2E have a new version of the SRD and, more importantly, is it easy to find and widely advertised? Would a new potential player of PF2E know they could use an SRD when faced with a wall of books? How would they know about an SRD if they are not forum readers like us? Probably the majority of potential new players would not be reading online forums. The SRD doesn't seem to me to be the answer to recruiting new players when faced with the wall of books.

I'm sure most Pathfinder players on this forum do use the SRD but this isn't about you - for PF2E to thrive Paizo needs to attract new blood; most of them aren't going to be thinking about an SRD when choosing a game. They will be thinking 'there's D&D which everyone plays and is being streamed all over the internet and I only need the PHB or this Essentials Starter kit Or there's this other game with the massive rulebook that looks just like some other older rulebooks but I also need this and that other book as well?'
 
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darjr

I crit!
Around here every player seems to have the PHB. It is kinda different from editions before. Where one in three did not and always would be borrowing or reading off their phone. Around here even those running on thier phone have a PHB
 

Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
My experience is that Pathfinder players have the Core Rulebook in roughly the same proportion as D&D Players. In any roleplaying group I have ever been a part of there are players who have the books and players who don't. Books, PDFs, and SRDs (if available) are all used often by the same players. The Fifth Edition group I play in makes substantial use of D&D Beyond. Only our DM pays for the subscription.

I am starting campaign prep right now. Sometimes I use the books when I need to sit down and really absorb the material. Sometimes I use the SRD if I need to do a quick search. Other times I use the PDFs if I want to cross reference between books like when prepping encounters or if I am going between the World Guide and Core Book.

Much of the upcoming product catalog is very lore focused and generally speaking Pathfinder fans tend to really dig into the lore. The books are also much better at explaining and providing examples of how things work. Even for referencing rules rather than content I find the Core Rulebook better because it provides things like examples, illustrations and highlights important information. Plus they're pretty.

There are a couple different SRDs for Pathfinder 2. One is linked to on Paizo's website.
 

S'mon

Legend
O.K., question answered.

The reason why I've never seen anyone use the SRD is because, in my neck of the woods (London, UK), Pathfinder has been wiped out of existence by 5e and every 5e player I've seen has a copy of the PHB. New players have their own copies of the PHB. Everyone wants to play 5e. I'm sure Pathfinder is still being played but not in any of the major meetups I'm aware of.
One of the players in my Meetup is going to run some playtest sessions of PF2 in South Wimbledon from October 9th, we can take a couple extra players if anyone interested (gimme a PM) PF2 Playtest (limited spaces - please PM)
 
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Mistwell

Hero
Pathfinder Core is #26 in Fantasy Gaming Products (#3090 in All Books). I seem to recall it always being in the top 25 before, but I can't say for sure as it's not something I tracked.

The Beastiary for PF2 is #12,859. For a reference point that's right near Starfinder RPG: Alien Archive 3 at #13,676.
 

Parmandur

Legend
Pathfinder Core is #26 in Fantasy Gaming Products (#3090 in All Books). I seem to recall it always being in the top 25 before, but I can't say for sure as it's not something I tracked.

The Beastiary for PF2 is #12,859. For a reference point that's right near Starfinder RPG: Alien Archive 3 at #13,676.
The initial rush seems to be over...
 

gss000

Villager
Erik Mona posted this in a comment thread on Reddit:

"Amazon sometimes seems to lower a book’s price to “keep the heat on” strong sales. But sometimes they seem to do it to spur sales. I suspect it also has something to do with how much inventory. I do know that, in most cases, these are purely algorithmic decisions without any human element. There must be a logic to them, but I can’t figure it out. Probably no one can, because it’s based on factors we cannot possibly see."

"I can see how many copies Amazon has sold so far, and that number is phenomenal. I can also see their current pending order with our book distributor, and that number makes me even happier."

https://www.reddit.com/r/Pathfinder2e/comments/cr8o6p
It's interesting to see the numbers since this post. Years ago, when I'd talk to game store owners, they'd mention trends with hardcover books like the PF2 is seeing now: big initial bump then a dramatic drop a month or two out. I wonder if Mona thinks this is bad since he said he saw the book in the top 15 or even top 10 Fantasy games for years. It didn't make a month. Maybe it will grow in days and weeks to come? If it doesn't, I wonder if Paizo can financially support their publishing schedule.
 

Parmandur

Legend
It's interesting to see the numbers since this post. Years ago, when I'd talk to game store owners, they'd mention trends with hardcover books like the PF2 is seeing now: big initial bump then a dramatic drop a month or two out. I wonder if Mona thinks this is bad since he said he saw the book in the top 15 or even top 10 Fantasy games for years. It didn't make a month. Maybe it will grow in days and weeks to come? If it doesn't, I wonder if Paizo can financially support their publishing schedule.
I don't really forsee a massive surge, but it can sell steadily for years.
 

gss000

Villager
I don't really forsee a massive surge, but it can sell steadily for years.
Same, although the questuon for me is whether it's sustainable and are the sales at the level it needs. I'm seeing some similarities to TSR at the end of 2nd ed. While Paizo does not have the crazy number of campaigns like TSR did, I wonder if the sales are enough to support what they are publishing.
 

Parmandur

Legend
Same, although the questuon for me is whether it's sustainable and are the sales at the level it needs. I'm seeing some similarities to TSR at the end of 2nd ed. While Paizo does not have the crazy number of campaigns like TSR did, I wonder if the sales are enough to support what they are publishing.
Well, maybe, maybe not: Amazon isn't the whole story, and they are a small independently owned company, so they need less.

Kind of startling to check and see that PF2 sales have now slipped further down again from this morning, though...
 

wakedown

Explorer
I'm not sure how much I'd obsess over Amazon Fantasy Gaming rankings. Gaslands Refueled is up at #15 and Realms of Runeterra pre-sell is up at #2.

As far as all the others books - the Bestiary, Lost Omens Guide, etc... they're all behind the Fallout Cookbook lauched over a year ago, so we're likely talking it's lucky if they are selling copies in the teens per day.

I suspect Paizo is selling a few dozen CRBs a day in order to stay in the Top 100 and they probably net $25 for each of those sold. All in, they're probably netting $1000 a day selling through Amazon for all products, which is a respectable $30K/month. They are probably getting $ via BN + all the FLGS added together.


Paizo's an interesting company that will likely be around for decades. I think you first need to think about it at it's core like a virtual FLGS selling non-Pathfinder product. You can buy minis, board games, comics, Warhammer, CCGs, checkers, etc from them. Their "core principals" (Lisa, Vic, Jeff) and their warehouse and support staff could probably survive at break-even without them ever printing another Pathfinder or Starfinder book.

Then you just need to think about Pathfinder/Starfinder being break-even and self-sustaining. When you get down to it, they can survive off just Bulmahn and Jacobs cranking out rules and setting books a few times a year. Their organized play staff work inexpensively and I most adventures are volunteers writing them. At $5 a pop and all digital in-house fulfillment, they can sell two scenarios a month at 1000 downloads and PFS and SFS are each bringing in $10,000/month each to cover those developers. All-in, both Pathfinder and Starfinder could net $1M a year and have room for a few supporting staff and survive off just 1-2 rulebooks and a few setting books a year and only a few thousand AP subscribers/purchasers.

Remember they've shed a ton of veteran staff and cost since 1E - Reynolds, Brock, Sutter, Schneider, Frasier, Price, Radney-MacFarland...
 

S'mon

Legend
I would think if Paizo consolidates it definitely has the chops to be around for decades as a solid second-tier company, rather than follow the White Wolf model of huge popularity followed by collapse. Their tight focus on a single setting Golarion seemed to work well for them, though Starfinder is a bit of a departure from that, but still nominally the same universe. Compared to say '90s TSR - and most games companies - they have effective management & business skills from Lisa Stevens. They can certainly make mistakes though (Goblinworks).
 

Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
I think it was always going to be tough sell. They have made a game that is a lot of fun to play and I think once people get campaigns off the ground and word spreads there will be slow growth. Based on what I am seeing in various places online they actually have succeeded in getting a newer crowd into the game, but it remains a tough sell for Pathfinder players.

Some of it comes mostly down to lack of initial options. Many Pathfinder games are wedded to things that do not exist yet. I expect the Lost Omens stuff will help some folks jump on. However, I think there is a critical mass of Pathfinder players waiting for Advanced Player's Guide next August before they make their decisions. There are many players who just want more stuff before they are willing to dive in.

I expect to see some jumps in Core Rulebook sales in January with the Gamemastery Guide and again in August with the Advanced Player's Guide which will feature many of the ancestries and classes many fans consider central to the Pathfinder experience. The developers have said they really consider Pathfinder 2 a 4 Core Rulebook game. It would have probably been helpful if they could have released them closer together, but they wanted to do a dedicated play test for the classes coming in the Advanced Player's Guide which is going to take some time.

Still there are some cultural problems that are going to need to be overcome. Pathfinder 2 puts more power back into the hands of the GM. In several parts of the core rulebook they explicitly define things that are up to GM judgement and there is some consternation about this online and within my Pathfinder Society group. Rarity is something of a hotbed as well. GMs seem to be embracing this edition much quicker than players from what I have seen.

I think they do not really have much choice. They need to make it work. I do not think they are in a terrible place at the moment. It is a boutique game with some individual consumers that spend much more money than what a typical Dungeons and Dragons player spends. I personally will probably spend around $500 in the next year on the game. I have only ever spent $150 in 5 years of Fifth Edition.

They definitely do need to grow their customer base, but they needed to do that anyway. First Edition was hemorrhaging under the weight of Dungeons and Dragons. They need a current game that has a strong niche in order to stay relevant. I think they have it, but it's going to be a challenge to build up from the ground level and try to bring some more of their veteran players along.

I will have to track it down, but they did some independent acceptance testing with players who had never played a table top roleplaying game. They found that play group had a much easier time understanding the game and building characters then veterans did. I leave it to the reader to determine if that is a positive indicator or not.
 

wakedown

Explorer
I would think if Paizo consolidates it definitely has the chops to be around for decades as a solid second-tier company, rather than follow the White Wolf model of huge popularity followed by collapse.
It will be tough. I'm in reach of 3 metro regions with a combined population of 21M where there used to be a thriving PFS community with over 500 players each month on a Saturday gameday. Now the stores aren't even interested in hosting and there's probably only 16 unique players playing both SFS+PFS2E in a given month. And those 16 loyalists are more interested in/playing more SFS than PFS2E.

It's a competitive market to try to make noise as a secondary fantasy TTRPG and I'd think quality would be pretty critical for that next slot. Paizo's quality really has dropped a lot in the past few years. The CRB desperately needed another week of editing ~ the degree of typos and grammar issues is pretty crazy.

The game is really Bulmahn's and the setting is really Jacob's more than anything else. Unlike say Monte Cook Games (where the owner is Monte himself, so you have the principal pouring his soul into something he majority owns), it will be hard for Paizo to retain them without significant ownership stakes. Ultimately the second place fantasy TTRPG in today's world will be the labor of love of a talented veteran who also owns the brand he's working for.
 

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