Critical Role 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".

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.
 

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dave2008

Legend
So, am I shocked by the popularity of the campaign book, nope.
Agreed, I frankly find it more shocking that WotC didn't have more faith in their product / brand ot make their own series. I think the world is primed for the return of Hank, Eric, Diana, Albert (Presto), Sheila, & Bobby (with Tiamat and Venger thrown in their too).
 

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timbannock

Hero
Supporter
I'm not surprised by this news, but it makes me a bit sad and comes with a sense of foreboding.

I've read Matt Mercer's statement about this product not getting in the way of other publications/settings. I get that.

But if these sales #'s hold up, then they are going to likely put OTHER Exandria publications in place of older or more traditional setting publications because they are what is selling well.

Since I have very little tie to the CR worlds (I've watched a handful of episodes, but none of Campaign 2 so far), I care nothing for this product or other CR products.

I'm glad for the CR folks and for D&D that they're having something sell this well, but I'm bummed for what that probably means for the prospects of other settings I love.

If it's any consolation, so far WOTC seems largely uninterested in revisiting anything (campaign-setting related, at any rate) outside of the Realms, no matter how well it sells. D&D Stranger Things had tons of hype, Curse of Strahd is often cited as the "best" adventure so far on a great many lists, and yet they've followed those up with nada. I think at the end of the day WOTC knows campaign settings are a niche product, and no matter how well this book does, there's not a long, continuous business in that side of what they release. One offs and the occasional revisit sure, but it's not something that's going to change their entire business plan.

IMHO
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Agreed, I frankly find it more shocking that WotC didn't have more faith in their product / brand ot make their own series. I think the world is primed for the return of Hank, Eric, Diana, Albert (Presto), Sheila, & Bobby (with Tiamat and Venger thrown in their too).
Probably something to do with the complex mess that is D&D media rights. There’s that film being (slowly) made, remember?
 

lkj

Hero
Agreed, I frankly find it more shocking that WotC didn't have more faith in their product / brand ot make their own series. I think the world is primed for the return of Hank, Eric, Diana, Albert (Presto), Sheila, & Bobby (with Tiamat and Venger thrown in their too).

I think they've been trying to make things happen behind the scenes. Nathan Stewart occasionally makes vague comments to that effect. Things just move slow in that arena for them. Probably having a lot to do with lawyers and licensing.

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Von Ether

Legend
Humor my ignorance. So the Green Ronin book was CR's main continent/adventuring home? Or has the series cover both continents enough that this was going to eventually happen anyway once the first book was out?

Because to my limited understanding right now, this is like GR printed Faerûn but now WotC is printing up Kara-Tur and it's selling like crazy. Which would blow my mind thinking how much the first book is probably selling for.
 

MarkB

Legend
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.
Critical Role, and Marisha Ray in particular, have an unpleasant history with not being fully in control of their own IP. They started on Youtube channel Geek & Sundry, which Legendary bought up as part of an attempt to launch their own video and streaming service, Alpha. The results were not welcomed by fans, and Critical Role was one of the few shows to disentangle themselves and escape intact from the resulting mess.

I daresay it would take a minor miracle to persuade them to ever place themselves at the mercy of another company again.
 

dave2008

Legend
Humor my ignorance. So the Green Ronin book was CR's main continent/adventuring home? Or has the series cover both continents enough that this was going to eventually happen anyway once the first book was out?

Because to my limited understanding right now, this is like GR printed Faerûn but now WotC is printing up Kara-Tur and it's selling like crazy. Which would blow my mind thinking how much the first book is probably selling for.
It is my understanding that the first season of CR spent most of, if not all, its time in Tal'Dorei , which the Green Ronin book covers. Wildemount is a different continent and I think season two of CR spends more time there.
 

dave2008

Legend
Critical Role, and Marisha Ray in particular, have an unpleasant history with not being fully in control of their own IP. They started on Youtube channel Geek & Sundry, which Legendary bought up as part of an attempt to launch their own video and streaming service, Alpha. The results were not welcomed by fans, and Critical Role was one of the few shows to disentangle themselves and escape intact from the resulting mess.

I daresay it would take a minor miracle to persuade them to ever place themselves at the mercy of another company again.
However, they could easily sell the IP if / when they no longer want to continue with the show / brand. I mean Lucas did that for Star Wars and I never he would sell that gold mine.
 

bedir than

Full Moon Storyteller
Let's see if I understand it. It started as an amateur project, but it become popular because there were good vibes.

Drangolance wasn't only a best-seller, but the most sold after Lord of the Rings. My theory is Dragonlance will come back after a media project, a videogame or a serie, the story is too long for a movie. The animated movie was too violent for preteen public, even for +7. I suggest like "pilot episode" the Dragonlance story "Wanna bet?" I was really fun, as a tricker DM trolling/teasing players.

I don't know Adventure Zone or Hammond-Quest to know if its background is compatible for a canon D&D sourcebook.

* Any popular D&D podcast has been set in neither FR nor homebred settin? It could be a clue for the future settins.

* Do you imagine Disney+ creating their own RPG podcast? Low-level cost and young promised to be promoted.

* When an Endless Quest dungeon-brawling board game for +10y? (now Hero-Quest is trademark by other company)
While Disney+ isn't embracing the RPG spirit yet, NBC's new streaming service Peacock is launching with an Adventure Zone series.

Plenty of D&D pods are set in Eberron. DragonLance has a popular one as well. Most are homebrew, because that's how the majority of people play D&D.
 

MarkB

Legend
It is my understanding that the first season of CR spent most of, if not all, its time in Tal'Dorei , which the Green Ronin book covers. Wildemount is a different continent and I think season two of CR spends more time there.
That's close enough. The season 1 adventurers did make it to Wildemount for a couple of jaunts, but mostly stuck to a single town and surrounding area, and never really got into the politics or wider geography of the region.

The season 2 group have spent almost all their time there, straying only as far as some of the islands around the Menagerie Coast.
 

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