Wildemount: Most Pre-orders Since D&D Core Rulebooks

It seems that the most popular D&D setting in the 5E era is... Wildemount! Talking about the upcoming Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, WotC's Greg Tito said on a Twitch stream recently that "we're pretty sure that this book has seen the most pre-orders and pre-release excitement since any of the core rulebooks for Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition were released".

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Here's the quote in full:

"...It was number 1, ranked number 1, for all books on Amazon. How many of you out there remember when Amazon was just selling books? Raise your hands. Yeah, that's me. So it's really cool, even though obviously I do a lot more other fun stuff right now, there is a ton out there that are excited for this book, and it isn't even out yet.

"We have little bit of an internal metrics, but we're pretty sure that this book has seen the most pre-orders and pre-release excitement since any of the core rulebooks for Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition were released, and if you've been following along at home, Dungeons & Dragons has been selling like hotcakes since 5th Edition released in 2014."

It sounds like the Critical Role setting is proving more popular (at least right now) than traditional D&D settings like Ravenloft or Eberron, newer ones like Ravnica, or adventures set in the Forgotten Realms.

Explorer's Guide to Wildemount will hit game stores on March 17th.
 
Russ Morrissey

Comments

Reynard

Legend
Also indicates that prioritizing this product over old school Greyhawk/Darksun/Spelljammer settings was probably the right call. There's only so much room for new settings, I'd rather have a more-or-less clean slate than yet another FR publication myself.

As far as not being "owned" by WOTC, I'm not sure how that works. I mean, Eberron was the result of a contest and the idea wasn't initially developed in-house. Is this really that much different?
Eberron's development wasn't only entirely different, it was pretty much unique.
 

LuisCarlos17f

Adventurer
If you allow me the question from Spain. After Adquisition Inc and CR, and Adventure Zone... what are the most popular game-live show podcast (and with numbers for the jackot to be the next D&D world).

What will be the next, Critical Role the videogame, with options to create machinima movies for your own podcasts?
 

charlesatan

Explorer
I'm not very familiar with Critical Role, so I don't know what the fuss is about. Is there anything unique about Wildemount compared to Forgotten Realms, Eberron, etc? Didn't the CR folks already publish a world guide for 5e under Green Ronin?
1) It's the campaign setting of a new generation of D&D players who grew up watching celebrities play D&D on stream.

2) Green Ronin published one of the continents in the setting.
 

dbm

Explorer
Well that seems to be true. Amazon has commissioned a Critical Role series, not a D&D series.
To my mind, that is the fundamental problem in how WotC bungled the D&D movies. D&D (a set of rules) is not an IP in the same way that Dragon Lance (a series of stories) or even Forgotten Realms (a set of lore and histories) would be.

They should have tried converting the more popular books into films IMO, rather that cutting right back to rogues, mages and beholders like the first film did (though I think the world did plumb the depths of TSR IP IIRC). But presumably the person with the rights to produce a film didn’t have the rights to these other properties.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
At the very least, WotC may be keen to buy that IP...
I can't imagine why CR would sell. It's a goldmine. $11M Kickstarters, Amazon shows, WotC licensing their IP for a book.

I'd half expect that CR would release their own RPG called Critical Role, which would at least be one of the biggest RPGs in the hobby, but I guess the money in that doesn't likely compare to the money in TV shows and the like.
 

Prakriti

Hi, I'm a Mindflayer, but don't let that worry you
If you allow me the question from Spain. After Adquisition Inc and CR, and Adventure Zone... what are the most popular game-live show podcast (and with numbers for the jackot to be the next D&D world).

What will be the next, Critical Role the videogame, with options to create machinima movies for your own podcasts?
HarmonQuest is the only thing that comes to mind. Like Adventure Zone and AI, it's a comedy show that plays fast and loose with D&D conventions.

Nothing else approaches the popularity of these shows that I'm aware of.
 

Reynard

Legend
To my mind, that is the fundamental problem in how WotC bungled the D&D movies. D&D (a set of rules) is not an IP in the same way that Dragon Lance (a series of stories) or even Forgotten Realms (a set of lore and histories) would be.

They should have tried converting the more popular books into films IMO, rather that cutting right back to rogues, mages and beholders like the first film did (though I think the world did plumb the depths of TSR IP IIRC). But presumably the person with the rights to produce a film didn’t have the rights to these other properties.
Remember that WotC/TSR did not make those movies, or the abysmal Dragonlance animated film (which should have been amazing based on the cast alone, dammit!). They were licensed. And those licenses go out individually. In the same way that some Marvel properties are distributed across Hollywood development studios, the various worlds of D&D are spread out.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
To my mind, that is the fundamental problem in how WotC bungled the D&D movies. D&D (a set of rules) is not an IP in the same way that Dragon Lance (a series of stories) or even Forgotten Realms (a set of lore and histories) would be.
I've always said that. D&D is a toolbox for creating stories, but it itself isn't a story. Some of the adventures are stories, but none of those have the brand recognition that "D&D" has. The closest WotC has in terms of a good marketable story for a TV show, I feel, is Dragonlance ,which while it's not a household name, was a NYT bestseller and is a cohesive single story.
 

Reynard

Legend
I've always said that. D&D is a toolbox for creating stories, but it itself isn't a story. Some of the adventures are stories, but none of those have the brand recognition that "D&D" has. The closest WotC has in terms of a good marketable story for a TV show, I feel, is Dragonlance ,which while it's not a household name, was a NYT bestseller and is a cohesive single story.
I think a Dragonlance movie series or premium television series could still do well, but I feel like they missed their window for it being a phenomenon. Had the trilogy come out a few years after Jackson's the Lord of the Rings and the Harry Potter films ended, it would have done well based on the hunger for more of that content.
 

dbm

Explorer
I can't imagine why CR would sell. It's a goldmine. $11M Kickstarters, Amazon shows, WotC licensing their IP for a book.
Well, for cash plus stock, naturally! Then they can go off and create another IP money generator, or simply sit back and count their money.

My point is: selling the IP could just mean someone else steers and cranks the handle, it doesn’t stop them benefiting from the success of the IP.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Well, for cash plus stock, naturally! Then they can go off and create another IP money generator, or simply sit back and count their money.

My point is: selling the IP could just mean someone else steers and cranks the handle, it doesn’t stop them benefiting from the success of the IP.
It's growing right now. Amazon show is in production. It's all up from here. Critical Role is a perfect storm; there's no guarantee they could do that again. They could likely make far more by continuing to license it than they would by selling it. What if the show takes off massively, and people approach them about a movie? Or a video game? (Or maybe they already have). All this is bigger fry than an RPG setting book.
 

OB1

Jedi Master
Yup, it's very popular, which is very cool. Seems like those CR fans buy books after all.
Also worth noting that the PHB has moved up to #47 from the mid 60s.

I'm guessing one of the indicators that WoTC looks at with each new release is how it affects sales of the Core 3, as that is an sign that the current book is bringing in new players with it.

This in turn helps ensure that the Average Lifetime Value of a new customer is greater than the cost of acquiring a new player. And as long as that metric remains positive, WoTC gets to keep publishing D&D books for us :)
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Indeed. But if Hasbro had made the first move it might have been D&D instead of CR.
I've no insight into Hasbro's media licensing practices, but I'd be amazed if they weren't constantly making first moves on stuff like this. It's not like they don't know how; there are TV shows and movies based on plenty of Hasbro toy properties. That said, the D&D movie/TV rights are a little messier. Dragonlance, on the other hand, might be easier.
 
Same. My first exposure to Amazon.com was in grad school, when we were just directed to Amazon to buy the textbooks for a class. At the time, I was heartily annoyed I couldn't just get them from the school book store. But undoubtedly, it was cheaper.

It wouldn't have surprised me that Wildemount is the top RPG book on pre-orders alone, but the top book period, that does. I knew the Critical Role fandom was big, but that big, dang!

"How many of you out there remember when Amazon was just selling books? Raise your hands. Yeah, that's me.
 
I can't imagine why CR would sell. It's a goldmine. $11M Kickstarters, Amazon shows, WotC licensing their IP for a book.

I'd half expect that CR would release their own RPG called Critical Role, which would at least be one of the biggest RPGs in the hobby, but I guess the money in that doesn't likely compare to the money in TV shows and the like.
Critical Role could buy D&D from Hasbro...
 

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