Worst case scenario: Could WotC "break" the whole industry?

Strac

First Post
Dracosuave, the analogies are inaccurate. If someone invented teleportation technology, some people would still drive cars because they enjoy the experience. Let's say that the overwhelming majority of those are Ford enthusiasts. If Ford then packed up, a lot of those people wouldn't bother to adjust to a vintage Honda, they'd just use the teleporter.

And if Blizzard went under, a lot of people would start playing Counterstrike instead!

My argument is that D&D has always been the flagship of RPGs, and that 4E has been designed and marketed to appeal specifically to a new generation of players, which lives and breathes MMORPGs and anime, and for which the fantasy tropes of previous D&D editions are no more relevant or appealing than The Monkees.

Hopefully Hasbro has the brand power and marketing budget to bring in new customers from that demographic. But if 4E dies, those potential players will never know that "people don't always get the same experience from a MMO as they do from a table top RPG", and they certainly won't be tracking Paizo down to see if Pathfinder can do it.

I don't like 4E. I cannot consider it a genuine edition of D&D. But I have a strong interest in seeing it succeed, because for all of the customers it wins, some will drift into other P&P games, which keeps the hobby vibrant and alive.

if blizzard tanks, people would play on a freeshard or try a different mmo. same goes for rpgs. usually people are in it for the face to face rpg, not because it's "dnd or nothing!".

true, dnd is a big brand, just as wow. doesn't mean other games/brands do not attract players. and if 4e lures in the mmorpgers and other people is highly debatable - in the end, people interested in it will try any rpg just by word of mouth.

btw, in todays world teleporting would be so expensive and commercially strangled that driving would always be a option. :p (and, if you drive around for the experience, you don't care about the brand. only if you are one of the people that can afford the "exclusive" experience of a ferrari or sth. you care about the brand. driving itself wouldn't be devalued ;)).
 

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kitsune9

Adventurer
Inspired by a number of recent events...

What if WotC screws D&D up royally? Like, far worse than they have so far...


Could they break the industry?

Could they ruin everything if they tried (or were just even mroe radically incompetent)?

Or is the industry way, way bigger than WotC?


Your opinion?

I think the industry will get hurt no doubt, but the industry is bigger than WotC. If D&D goes away, people could do one or more of several things:

1. Continue to play D&D with what they have and buy whatever 3PP support exists until their licenses are revoked.
2. Find another game to play and boost Company X's fanbase. This could be an earlier edition of D&D or another rpg altogether.
3. Quit gaming altogether and do something else.

So for WotC to screw up royally and D&D goes away or dies, the industry will go on.

What is interesting in a lot of these posts is the level of fear that people are seeing that WotC is killing D&D and it's going to go away. I get that, particularly in these bad economic times. Who really knows? I think in these bad economic times, we tend to worry more about our hobby than any other time and criticize every move made. It happens. Just remember though, that whatever you own it's yours, no one can take that away from you and it's still your hobby. Play it to its fullest.

Happy gaming.
 

Harr

First Post
It depends on the length of time.

If D&D were to disappear - completely disappear - then RPG's as a hobby would be dead within a generation, two at most.

Of course if D&D disappeared TODAY, the industry would go on TODAY. And tomorrow. And next year. And all within my and your lifetime. Of course... that doesn't even bear saying.

But without the level of media exposure, the cultural awareness of that thing called "Dungeons and Dragons" that geeks play, and the constant influx of new blood that the D&D brand itself brings day in and day out? You think your children and your children's children will all just magically find Exalted or Dogs in the Vineyard or something? No chance.
 

Aberzanzorax

First Post
Will the children of tommorow magically find it? No.

Will my children find it? Absolutely. My son already has my old monster manual to look through, and he is three. He'll definitely get some experience with exalted and a host of other games from me.

I think that will be true of others as well. I'm seeing more and more parents playing video games along with their kids, and I get the impression from numerous posts here and on WotC's forums that gamers frequently teach their kids the games they play.

So if adult gamers switch to other games as a whole, I expect later generations will as well.
 

Harr

First Post
Will my children find it? Absolutely. My son already has my old monster manual to look through, and he is three. He'll definitely get some experience with exalted and a host of other games from me.

Oh, of course. My children would find it as well. And everybody's children on these boards. It wouldn't be enough, they would still die out. Sure, in a couple generations somebody somewhere would still be playing them... on the same scale that say kick-the-can or hopscotch are still played today.

Of course it's nice and attractive to fantasize that we, as individuals, through sheer love and word of mouth, through some grassroots pass-it-down movement can have the same effect that millions of dollars of advertising budget can have... But in reality? No. D&D is what keeps tabletop RPGs in the general public's mindspace to any degree (even if it's to make fun of the people who play it in sitcoms... have you ever seen a sitcom episode where the joke is "oh look at them they play a tabletop indie RPG, haha"? No, you haven't.. it's always "they play *Dungeons and Dragons* haha"... anything else is simply invisible).
 
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xechnao

First Post
D&D is what keeps tabletop RPGs in the general public's mindspace to any degree (even if it's to make fun of the people who play it in sitcoms... have you ever seen a sitcom episode where the joke is "oh look at them they play a tabletop indie RPG, haha"? No, you haven't.. it's always "they play *Dungeons and Dragons* haha"... anything else is simply invisible).

Not yet since but I could easily imagine something like this could be: "oh look at them they play super-heroes and monsters"... or even "they play fantasy battles" or something like that.
 

The Hound

Explorer
Inspired by a number of recent events...

What if WotC screws D&D up royally? Like, far worse than they have so far...


Could they break the industry?

Could they ruin everything if they tried (or were just even mroe radically incompetent)?

Or is the industry way, way bigger than WotC?


Your opinion?

My 2 cents worth: Tabletop RPGs are collectively a *type* of game, like board games, card games, etc. are. WOTC can't destroy the RPG industry any more than the largest board game manufacturer could destroy the board game industry by pulling out of it. They could seriously shrink it by dropping out of it, but there will always be companies selling role playing products.
 

Bumbles

First Post
have you ever seen a sitcom episode where the joke is "oh look at them they play a tabletop indie RPG, haha"? No, you haven't.. it's always "they play *Dungeons and Dragons* haha"... anything else is simply invisible).

There's only one that would do it, the Big Bang Theory. Maybe they have already, haven't seen all the episodes.

But I BELIEVE they could!
 

Brown Jenkin

First Post
D&D is what keeps tabletop RPGs in the general public's mindspace to any degree (even if it's to make fun of the people who play it in sitcoms... have you ever seen a sitcom episode where the joke is "oh look at them they play a tabletop indie RPG, haha"? No, you haven't.. it's always "they play *Dungeons and Dragons* haha"... anything else is simply invisible).

I've seen plenty of shows use made up names for games that are like D&D when they don't want to pay royalties or arn't given permission for using the D&D brand name (i.e. Dwarflord). Most shows and people don't even know the term Tabletop RPG or that there are real indie versions of TRPGs. In these cases the shows rely on the fact that anything that plays like D&D will be associated with D&D in the viewers mind whether they use the name or not.
 

Morbius_of_Oz

Explorer
The demise of D&D

Love 'em or hate 'em, Hasbro brings new players to the games table. It's Hasbro's money that is spent on the merchandising that is placed in stores such as Border's Books, when no other games company is doing the same ('cept Games Workshop).

If WoTC/Hasbro drops D&D, there go a lot of potential new players who won't see the posters, who won't get curious and won't pick up a book.

Just a thought.

Craig J. Brain
 

baphomet68

First Post
Could WOTC break whole industry?

As the premier RPG company, I suppose that it is conceivable for WOTC to break the industry. Like, if it were somehow in their parent companies best interest to tank PNP RPGs. That said, Its really unlikely. Temporarily interrupting the availability of complete digital books is really irritating to me, but I suspect it has increased interest in the game.
While the new edition of D&D makes some bold changes to the game, and adds a number of concepts from other game lines, it is an honest, good faith offering. So I see no reason to beleive they would want to break the industry, although I beleive they could break it if they saw a benefit to it.:hmm:
 

Lwaxy

Cute but dangerous
They split the community, but other than that, whoever has bought enough of the old and good stuff has probably enough material for a lifetime of gaming. As for the industry? I don't think it is that much of an issue, the idustry has always been able to adapt.

And no, Big Bang Theory hasn't gone that much into RPG references and only mentioned character classes once if I remember correctly. But there was a German show using Shadowrun as game their geeks played.
 

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