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Review Dragon Heist, Mad Mage, and Ravnica!

Russ Morrissey

Comments

Kramodlog

Adventurer
Not generally no.
What we do here is fine. I generally like it here.

But it is worth reminding people that the enthusiasm over new D&D books isn’t necessarily low. Just low here. And a low number of reviews here doesn't translate into a general lack of interest with the larger audience.
And extrapolating from the lack of interest here to making statements about sales and possible alternate sources of the revenue is pretty dubious logic.
Here is composed of 300,000 posters. Scientific polls do not even reach that sort of representation. Looking at the dates when some accounts were made and how some themes keep coming up in threats (e.g. aligments), I'd say there is a fair share of new people to the game and the hobby here. Granted, the grognard demographics might be more represented, but there are lots of new folk here.

Looking at Amazon charts, the core books are the ones who stay high, not the APs (Dragon Heist and Dungeon of the Mad Mage aren't even APs) or supplements. Newbies attracted to the hobby because of streaming seems to drive those sells. Ashame the products that would root them in the community aren't up to par.

Streaming might just be a fad like many others, so what will drive sells of 5e once that fad passes? Certainly not the products.
 

Morrus

Administrator
Staff member
Here is composed of 300,000 posters. Scientific polls do not even reach that sort of representation. Looking at the dates when some accounts were made and how some themes keep coming up in threats (e.g. aligments), I'd say there is a fair share of new people to the game and the hobby here. Granted, the grognard demographics might be more represented, but there are lots of new folk here.
The demographics are a lot younger than they used to be.

And that's just people who have accounts, of course. The *readership* is the important stat (it's a news site, primarily, not a forum) and the are skewing a LOT younger these days.
 

Wrathamon

Explorer
I think the biggest thing they will learn is if releasing two products at the same time was good or did it cannibalize profit since this really is the first time. They are also not very related so they dont have very much synergy with the releases. I wonder why they just didnt wait for a different window for ravnica ... only reason I can see is the xmas season is on us.
 

Jester David

Villager
Here is composed of 300,000 posters. Scientific polls do not even reach that sort of representation. Looking at the dates when some accounts were made and how some themes keep coming up in threats (e.g. aligments), I'd say there is a fair share of new people to the game and the hobby here. Granted, the grognard demographics might be more represented, but there are lots of new folk here.

Looking at Amazon charts, the core books are the ones who stay high, not the APs (Dragon Heist and Dungeon of the Mad Mage aren't even APs) or supplements. Newbies attracted to the hobby because of streaming seems to drive those sells. Ashame the products that would root them in the community aren't up to par.

Streaming might just be a fad like many others, so what will drive sells of 5e once that fad passes? Certainly not the products.
That’s 300,000 accounts, not posters. And that’s made over the history of the site, not active forumites. It includes a lot of former posters, lurkers, sock puppet accounts, RP alts, etc.
The site has maybe 2,000-3,000 active posters. (Which is still nothing to sneeze at.) Yes, we’ve gotten a lot of new posters. But not a representative number: three-quarters of the posters here aren’t new.

Compare this to reddit/r/dnd that has 784,230 subscribers with 4,717 online last I checked. And that’s one subreddit of many. See what the posters there are talking about. Compare the conversations.

And looking at the Amazon chart, even the less popular storyline adventures are selling better than Starfinder and Pathfinder, the next most popular game. This means they’re potentially selling better than 4e! Even the old adventures are still selling, which is a dramatic difference from old editions where new products would spike is sales and then vanish, falling out of print. WotC is keeping all their products available now. They’re doing very, very well.
And accessories like Guide to Everything and Guide to Monsters continue to sell well. And Guide to Ravnica is selling very well still.

Meanwhile, streaming games has only grown in popularity over the last two-three years and shows no sign of slowing down. If it is a fad, it’s a long lasting one. (And the Critical Role campaign setting book is also outselling Paizo’s RPGs.)
While the popularity made wax and wane, I doubt people will stop watching altogether.
 

Ash Mantle

Villager
I've only just gotten a hold of Guildmaster's Guide to Ravnica and Dungeon of the Mad Mage, and I've been slowly digesting the contents of the two ever since. From what I've read so far, these are really high quality and well written products!
GGtR has actually inspired me to write backgrounds and factions in a way that both blends flavor and mechanics (in a more intertwined way), with also using the renown system.
And I've been mining Dungeon of the Mad Mage for dungeon ideas and even game ideas for one-shots.
 

robus

Explorer
I think Morrus is just tired of me crapping on the popularity of his site. Cause I’m always the one pointing out we’re not the norm and implying message boards are dated...
if new players are not coming here for community, where are they going? Reddit? Youtube?
 

robus

Explorer
The demographics are a lot younger than they used to be.

And that's just people who have accounts, of course. The *readership* is the important stat (it's a news site, primarily, not a forum) and the are skewing a LOT younger these days.
that’s interesting. I occasionally hit the front page to see what’s up, but I mostly visit for the forum chatter.
 

pukunui

Adventurer
I have left a review for Waterdeep: Dragon Heist, of which I am not a big fan.

I haven't got the other two books. If/when I do get them (am waiting to see if anyone gives one or both of them to me for Christmas), I will leave reviews.
 

Morrus

Administrator
Staff member
that’s interesting. I occasionally hit the front page to see what’s up, but I mostly visit for the forum chatter.
The site didn’t even have a forum back when it started.
 
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Parmandur

Adventurer
Here is composed of 300,000 posters. Scientific polls do not even reach that sort of representation. Looking at the dates when some accounts were made and how some themes keep coming up in threats (e.g. aligments), I'd say there is a fair share of new people to the game and the hobby here. Granted, the grognard demographics might be more represented, but there are lots of new folk here.

Looking at Amazon charts, the core books are the ones who stay high, not the APs (Dragon Heist and Dungeon of the Mad Mage aren't even APs) or supplements. Newbies attracted to the hobby because of streaming seems to drive those sells. Ashame the products that would root them in the community aren't up to par.

Streaming might just be a fad like many others, so what will drive sells of 5e once that fad passes? Certainly not the products.
Hoard of the Dragon Queen, easily the worst 5E book and over 4 years old at this point, is #518 among all books right now on Amazon. The Amazon numbers are not historic sales, but current. The Starfinder Core Rules are #6130 in all books.

The 5E adventures and accessories are moving pretty huge numbers on their own.
 

SkidAce

Adventurer
The site didn’t even have a forum back when it started.
We had forums for a while before the, what was it? 2002 crash/data loss?.

But yeah, I barely remember it just being the new edition's coming web page.

It was a unique time, before the explosion of social media.
 

Morrus

Administrator
Staff member
We had forums for a while before the, what was it? 2002 crash/data loss?
The crash was in 2013. You’re off by over a decade! :)

But yeah, the site ran for a year or two back around/before the turn of the century as just a news page with no forums. They were a later addition.
 

SkidAce

Adventurer
The crash was in 2013. You’re off by over a decade! :)

But yeah, the site ran for a year or two back around/before the turn of the century as just a news page with no forums. They were a later addition.
There was a data loss around 2002, because I had to recreate my account, and was miffed that it said 02 instead of whatever it was previously.

I think its why no one really has a join date before Jan 02?. I was moving around in the military and didnt rejoing until Sep 02. But I'm afraid I remember no other details, as of why.

Thanks for the info.
 

Morrus

Administrator
Staff member
There was a data loss around 2002, because I had to recreate my account, and was miffed that it said 02 instead of whatever it was previously.

I think its why no one really has a join date before Jan 02?. I was moving around in the military and didnt rejoing until Sep 02. But I'm afraid I remember no other details, as of why.
That’s because we migrated to the new modern (for then) vBulletin software and decided to start clean rather than import data. Back then there was only a year or two of data. The forums were very small with only a few thousand members.
 

SkidAce

Adventurer
I am likely also conflating the "two" sites, as I have been here since the beginning of Eric Noah's Unofficial D&D 3rd Edition News.

You've done good work with the place, glad I stayed.
 

Henry

Autoexreginated
I am likely also conflating the "two" sites, as I have been here since the beginning of Eric Noah's Unofficial D&D 3rd Edition News.

You've done good work with the place, glad I stayed.
Yeah, my memory's a bit hazy, but I think the migration was accompanied by a fake flame war, also, on the old forums before Russ pulled the plug? :) Good times.
 

pogre

Adventurer
I posted a review for Dragon Heist. However, my group is a long way from completing Dungeon of the Mad Mage. I only review products after playing the product. I almost always feel differently about a product after playing it than I did after my first read through.

Not criticizing folks who post a review after reading a product - their reviews are inevitably more timely, and ultimately, more useful to earlier purchasers.
 

robus

Explorer
I posted a review for Dragon Heist. However, my group is a long way from completing Dungeon of the Mad Mage. I only review products after playing the product. I almost always feel differently about a product after playing it than I did after my first read through.

Not criticizing folks who post a review after reading a product - their reviews are inevitably more timely, and ultimately, more useful to earlier purchasers.
This is the big issue with adventure reviews IMHO. An adventure that might be a fun read often only reveals its issues when you actually animate it at the table.
 

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