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Thread: players secrets a hit?
10-23-1997, 02:43 AM #1Daniel BellGuest
players secrets a hit?
I had a question that was mainly directed to Ed. or Rich but
maybe some of you can answer it. Some time ago, Ed said that to make
a profit on the Players Secrets that TSR had to almost sell out of them
and that only several ever got close to that point. Which ones were
they, my guess is that they were on the Southern Coast, but its only a
guess, and since we are blessed with having inside sources I was
wondering if the the good WoC/TSR employees could comment. Also Ed or
Rich, why were the susscesful guides susscessful, what did they have in
Thanks in Advance,
10-26-1997, 11:29 PM #2Ed StarkGuest
players secrets a hit?
At 10:43 PM 10/22/97 -0400, you wrote:
> I had a question that was mainly directed to Ed. or Rich but
>maybe some of you can answer it. Some time ago, Ed said that to make
>a profit on the Players Secrets that TSR had to almost sell out of them
>and that only several ever got close to that point. Which ones were
>they, my guess is that they were on the Southern Coast, but its only a
>guess, and since we are blessed with having inside sources I was
>wondering if the the good WoC/TSR employees could comment. Also Ed or
>Rich, why were the susscesful guides susscessful, what did they have in
The key phrase in that paragraph is "only a few got close on that point." I
don't believe we ever made a profit on the domain sourcebooks. A few we
might have broken even on.
I don't think the issue was necessarily poor sales. We put out too many at
a time (four products in a single month is just too much to ask you all to
buy for a single game line, especially when one or two of them can run over
$20 apiece--even if the other too are inexpensive)and the production costs
were extremely high (comparatively speaking). We made the retailers,
distributors, and the customers choose between them, not on the basis of
quality, but on the basis of cashflow. That hurt us, in my opinion.
I think that, when BR starts selling strong again, we could put out a few
more domain sourcebooks (in some form or another--check old posts) and
expect them to do well. Right now, however, every book has to be a hit--we
can't afford any bombs. I personally think BR stuff has been among the best
quality gaming material you can get anywhere and continues to be high
quality (no, I'm not just talking about the stuff I write ;-)). I think the
people who care about the product, in-house and out-of-house (that includes
all of you), REALLY care and want it to succeed, so we don't put out
anything we think isn't top quality. We might miss occasionally, but not
for lack of trying.
Back on your thread. The Anuirean domain sourcebooks sold the best because
BR was new then and people were willing to risk the money on the product.
When retailers and distributors found they weren't making a high enough
profit on these books (and that's what they, and we, are trying to do--turn
a profit), they started putting their money in other areas. Players weren't
buying them in the numbers we'd hoped, and there you have it. In business,
people vote (mostly) with their wallets and purses. So, the domain
sourcebooks have been pulled (for now) and will undergo retooling before
they come out again.
-- ->-- ->-- ->--@
Game Designer, Wizards of the Coast/TSR Division
Asst. Brand Manager, BIRTHRIGHT/GREYHAWK/MARVEL Group
TSR Website: http://www.tsrinc.com
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