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There is a lot of stuff out for D&D right now, and sales are doing fine (Amazon)

TerraDave

5ever
As always, this is overall sales rank.

PHB 56
DMG 79
MM 109
XGtE 130
D&D SS 222
VGtM 154
MtoF 294

...

GMGtR 215
WDDH 496
WDDotMM 669
D&D A&A 473
 

Parmandur

Adventurer
As always, this is overall sales rank.

PHB 56
DMG 79
MM 109
XGtE 130
D&D SS 222
VGtM 154
MtoF 294

...

GMGtR 215
WDDH 496
WDDotMM 669
D&D A&A 473
But how does this fit into the narrative about how 5E is the worst, the books are mediocre, and nobody likes the game...?

Inquiring minds want to know!
 

Ratskinner

Adventurer
But how does this fit into the narrative about how 5E is the worst, the books are mediocre, and nobody likes the game...?

Inquiring minds want to know!
I realize this was probably a bit facetious, and I don't think 5e is the worst, but....

One explanation is the power of network externalities. That is, D&D has always been mediocre, but it is the most widespread (being the first in the market) and so is much easier to find a group to play in (which...y'know...is kinda important). Once a standard like that gets put in place, its can be very hard to displace, even if its demonstrably inferior to newer improved standards. This is especially true if the imperfect standard "works pretty okay" and isn't totally trash so that a lot of users already have favorite workarounds (i.e. houserules) for its quirks. I would say that most of D&D (across editions) falls into that category.* 5e has made adoption easy, and they've gotten back to its "works for the most part" roots, that amplifies the strength of its market presence.

I'm not saying I know or believe that that is 100% the case, but I don't think its an insignificant factor. Especially since I just read an article about "10 worlds I'd love to play in a D&D campaign" that cited non-D&D games by name .... as D&D?!? That was a head scratcher for me. I mean, here's an author who was saavy enough to know that MASHED was Powered by the Apocalypse, but still called it D&D. If "D&D" has become the word for "Role Playing Game" in the way the "Band-Aid" has become the word for "Adhesive Bandage".....

*You see that kind of thing in other products that exhibit network externalities, too:
"God I hate working with product X and all its little quirks and annoyances."
"Why does everybody keep using product X instead of switch to product Y, which avoids all those problems?"
"Because we all have product X and Y isn't 100% compatible with the other stuff in the network, plus I've written all this custom software to deal with X's problems...and it won't run on Y."
"Why do we all have product X?"
"It was the first one out there by 5 years."

Plus, there are other "symptoms" like multiple active forums devoted to dealing with the quirks and problems of product X....::looks around, clears throat::.... also grognardic cultural guardians.....::looks around, clears throat::...and I'm sure there's others, but this post is already pretty long. Thanks for sticking with it to the end.
 

Parmandur

Adventurer
I realize this was probably a bit facetious, and I don't think 5e is the worst, but....

One explanation is the power of network externalities. That is, D&D has always been mediocre, but it is the most widespread (being the first in the market) and so is much easier to find a group to play in (which...y'know...is kinda important). Once a standard like that gets put in place, its can be very hard to displace, even if its demonstrably inferior to newer improved standards. This is especially true if the imperfect standard "works pretty okay" and isn't totally trash so that a lot of users already have favorite workarounds (i.e. houserules) for its quirks. I would say that most of D&D (across editions) falls into that category.* 5e has made adoption easy, and they've gotten back to its "works for the most part" roots, that amplifies the strength of its market presence.

I'm not saying I know or believe that that is 100% the case, but I don't think its an insignificant factor. Especially since I just read an article about "10 worlds I'd love to play in a D&D campaign" that cited non-D&D games by name .... as D&D?!? That was a head scratcher for me. I mean, here's an author who was saavy enough to know that MASHED was Powered by the Apocalypse, but still called it D&D. If "D&D" has become the word for "Role Playing Game" in the way the "Band-Aid" has become the word for "Adhesive Bandage".....

*You see that kind of thing in other products that exhibit network externalities, too:
"God I hate working with product X and all its little quirks and annoyances."
"Why does everybody keep using product X instead of switch to product Y, which avoids all those problems?"
"Because we all have product X and Y isn't 100% compatible with the other stuff in the network, plus I've written all this custom software to deal with X's problems...and it won't run on Y."
"Why do we all have product X?"
"It was the first one out there by 5 years."

Plus, there are other "symptoms" like multiple active forums devoted to dealing with the quirks and problems of product X....::looks around, clears throat::.... also grognardic cultural guardians.....::looks around, clears throat::...and I'm sure there's others, but this post is already pretty long. Thanks for sticking with it to the end.
Extremely facetious, I can assure you.

There is no "become" about it, "D&D" means RPGing to people and pretty much always has. Powered by the Apocalypse, as far as even experienced and knowledgeable players, is basically "D&D with less math."

Network externalities might play a role. A bigger factor in this continued success is that WotC spent years studying how people play RPGs, what they look for in a game, and built a system fit to purpose. That, multiplied by those network externalities, is a potential force.
 

ad_hoc

Explorer
I realize this was probably a bit facetious, and I don't think 5e is the worst, but....

One explanation is the power of network externalities. That is, D&D has always been mediocre, but it is the most widespread (being the first in the market) and so is much easier to find a group to play in (which...y'know...is kinda important). Once a standard like that gets put in place, its can be very hard to displace, even if its demonstrably inferior to newer improved standards. This is especially true if the imperfect standard "works pretty okay" and isn't totally trash so that a lot of users already have favorite workarounds (i.e. houserules) for its quirks. I would say that most of D&D (across editions) falls into that category.* 5e has made adoption easy, and they've gotten back to its "works for the most part" roots, that amplifies the strength of its market presence.
5 years ago there was a lot of talk about how D&D might be dead.

Now the talk is 'of course it's doing very well, it's D&D'.


We are at peak RPG right now. Most of the people playing all RPGs (incl. 5e) are not hobby gamers and started playing with 5e.

The 'find a group to play in' is true of hobby gamers looking for an RPG.

5e has caught on among non-hobby gamers because they like it. They could be playing board games or doing other things. They're playing an RPG because the RPG is good. The next argument is that it is only doing so well because of advertising through streams and such. Well, people still wouldn't play it if they didn't like it. People try it out, love it, then recommend it to their friends.

When I meet new people they have either played it or have friends who have played it and said good things about it. That wouldn't be the case with 3e, Pathfinder, or 4e even with streaming and such.

What you prefer in a game is what you prefer, but to call 5e mediocre is absurd.
 

dave2008

Explorer
I also wonder if there a still distribution issues with the new ones (which seem pretty low for new releases). I was at at B&N last night and at first I was shocked to see all the D&D accessories available: minis, gird packs, map packs, dice, board games (wrath of ashardalon, dungeon, & another one that escapes me at the moment). I hadn't seen so many D&D accessories at major retailer for years in my area. Then I noticed they didn't have WDDH or DotMM or GMGtR! A later realized the had whole new display in a more prominent position that did have the new books, WDDH & DotMM and AA, but there was still no GMGtR. Either it was selling much better, or they don't have enough. Not sure which.
 

dave2008

Explorer
Especially since I just read an article about "10 worlds I'd love to play in a D&D campaign" that cited non-D&D games by name .... as D&D?!?
I didn't read the article, but the title suggest to me that the article would be about non-D&D worlds that they would like see in D&D. Was the author claiming these other worlds are D&D or that they would to play a D&D campaign in those worlds?
 

SkidAce

Adventurer
I also wonder if there a still distribution issues with the new ones (which seem pretty low for new releases). I was at at B&N last night and at first I was shocked to see all the D&D accessories available: minis, gird packs, map packs, dice, board games (wrath of ashardalon, dungeon, & another one that escapes me at the moment). I hadn't seen so many D&D accessories at major retailer for years in my area. Then I noticed they didn't have WDDH or DotMM or GMGtR! A later realized the had whole new display in a more prominent position that did have the new books, WDDH & DotMM and AA, but there was still no GMGtR. Either it was selling much better, or they don't have enough. Not sure which.
At my store we weren't initially sent AS many of the GMGtR, but as it sells, they send us replacements.
 

dave2008

Explorer
At my store we weren't initially sent AS many of the GMGtR, but as it sells, they send us replacements.
I haven't checked my FLGS yet, but if I decided to buy that us where I will go. I has hoping to look through it first and B&N is closer to my house.
 

TerraDave

5ever
But how does this fit into the narrative about how 5E is the worst, the books are mediocre, and nobody likes the game...?

Inquiring minds want to know!
The corebooks are selling really well relative to the adventures. But as I have been reminded many times on these boards, core rule books always outsell adventures, in all times and places.

To have a setting book in the top 200, and an art book in the top 500, are both pretty interesting. Curious to see how they do over the next few months.
 

Parmandur

Adventurer
The corebooks are selling really well relative to the adventures. But as I have been reminded many times on these boards, core rule books always outsell adventures, in all times and places.

To have a setting book in the top 200, and an art book in the top 500, are both pretty interesting. Curious to see how they do over the next few months.
I'm really impressed that Dragon Heist is holding it's own with Art & Arcana, actually.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
I also wonder if there a still distribution issues with the new ones (which seem pretty low for new releases). I was at at B&N last night and at first I was shocked to see all the D&D accessories available: minis, gird packs, map packs, dice, board games (wrath of ashardalon, dungeon, & another one that escapes me at the moment). I hadn't seen so many D&D accessories at major retailer for years in my area. Then I noticed they didn't have WDDH or DotMM or GMGtR! A later realized the had whole new display in a more prominent position that did have the new books, WDDH & DotMM and AA, but there was still no GMGtR. Either it was selling much better, or they don't have enough. Not sure which.
That is truly amazing and unexpected. B&N's still exists?
 

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