Pathfinder Playtest Preorder Update

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

When Paizo was planning this year's Pathfinder Playtest, we expected to exceed our own ability to fulfill orders on a timely basis, so we decided to use Fulfillment by Amazon. Unfortunately, Amazon's reports indicate that most customers will not be receiving their orders by tomorrow's release date. They shipped 3 orders on July 28, 3 more on July 29, and no orders on July 30 or 31. Today, they have shipped almost 10% of the outstanding orders, and they are continuing to ship through the night and into tomorrow. They have so far been unable to tell us when they will complete shipping. We will be posting updates as we receive them in this forum thread.

This delay doesn't impact preorders placed with retailers; most of them should have already received their products for release tomorrow. Paizo.com preorders for pickup at Gen Con are also unaffected.

We sincerely apologize for this delay. If your paizo.com Pathfinder Playtest preorder is being fulfilled by Amazon, we will be giving you $15 in paizo.com store credit in the near future.

PDFs of all of the playtest products will be available for free shortly after 6:00 AM Pacific time at paizo.com/pathfinderplaytest.

—The Paizo Team

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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
tivadar27 wrote:
rooneg wrote:
tivadar27 wrote:
Also, thanks to everyone for letting us know it's an issue with Amazon generally, not Paizo preorders through Amazon.
FWIW, it’s not an issue with all Amazon orders, mine is out for delivery now.
And some orders through Paizo are out for delivery now... But we've heard reports of people who ordered through Amazon and Paizo indicating they're not going to be receiving their order on time, so it's an issue with Amazon generally speaking.

As far as I can tell there are two separate sets of Playtest books at Amazon, the stuff at Amazon fulfillment that is servicing orders made at Paizo which hasn’t been shipping nearly as early as you would expect and the stuff Amazon got from the usual distribution network which started shipping days ago. I started getting tracking info from mine early this week, long before Paizo says Amazon fulfillment started shipping their orders. This tells me the two pools are largely separate and unrelated.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Zaister wrote:
Arakhor wrote:
Why would you order anything from a company 6,000 miles away? The customs and postage alone will be enormous. Don't you have a gaming store anywhere even remotely near you?

That's easy:

1) Even with UPS shipping costs to Germany and import tax, books I get from Paizo are cheaper for me than buying them here in a store.
2) I use UPS, so the shipment is usually here in less than a week, and that means about a week earlier than in the store.
3) This way I get free PDFs for everything, which I find essential.
4)The Gaming Store here may be L but could improve on the F.

BTW, where you do live? I'm in Hamburg.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I have the PDFs now (that was easier than I anticipated), so I'm not too worried about the delay in shipping. Kudos to Paizo for the store credit and sharing of information they know we didn't want to hear.

The free Syrinscape soundset was a nice bonus.


I think the $15 credit is a nice gesture and a good part of Paizo's customer service, however, to play devil's advocate only offering it to Paizo.com orders that were delayed seems like all people should really only order from Paizo. If something goes wrong Paizo will fix it but if you decided to support a FLGS or ordered through another platform and your order was delayed too bad, things happen, next time order from us.

Once again, playing devil's advocate above. I appreciate the offer to those on the website and personally don't care about the credit. The above is just one of the ways it can be looked at.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
magnuskn wrote:
BTW, where you do live? I'm in Hamburg.

Köln


God, how frustrating for you guys. When a little guy contracts a big guy for services, that should be the easy part.


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Thebazilly wrote:

That's honestly very frustrating. Doubly so when people who ordered through local stores will have their books on time (or before release in some cases...).

I was looking forward to getting my books all week. Hopefully they will at least be here before my group has our first session scheduled.

Agreed. In a launch this big there are definitely some logistics to consider and when using a third party (like Amazon) you are ultimately at their mercy. According to someone on twitter, they ordered their books directly from Amazon (at a discount as I found out this morning (nice Amazon, really?)) and received their books yesterday.

I don't fault Paizo for this, I fault Amazon for dropping the ball. You would think that a distribution company like that would have much better logistics. Heck, there's a warehouse in Dallas, TX which could have had my books to me in 3 days, but now I'm content with the PDF.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Zaister wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
BTW, where you do live? I'm in Hamburg.
Köln

Ah, too far away. Too bad. Anyway, brain is overloading from all the info!

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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Paizo, thank you for keeping us informed and for the $15 credit. I expect you've taken a loss both for paying Amazon to give you lousy service as well as the credit itself.

Human beings are imperfect by design and we are doomed in life to both make mistakes and have circumstances out of our control happen to us. A mature, decent human being is not someone who never makes mistakes, but someone who holds themselves accountable for them and tries to adjust to circumstances out of their control with grace and cool. Paizo, you are mature, decent human beings.

Here's the "but"...

(BUT...)

My one note of disappointment is that part of why I order direct through Paizo, in addition to better support the company itself, is so I can avoid using Amazon whenever possible. I understand that when I use Amazon, these "great prices" and low shipping I am getting are on the backs of hundreds of underpaid and often downright abused distribution workers. I would much rather save my money for the things that matter to me and buy from a company that I believe has much better ethical practices, even if it means paying more.

By your choosing to use Amazon fulfillment without my consent, you have taken that choice I make for my personal ethics away from me. THAT does bother me a great deal.

I recognize that you as a company have a right to use whatever shipping practices you want and I don't have much control over that. I also recognize you made this choice because you thought it was going to serve your customers better and faster than any other way. Still, it does rub me the wrong way that not only did you take my choice of shipment away from me for a distributor I do not like, and now indeed I am going to get poorer service because of it to (but this last bit is the least problem for me personally).

If sometime in the future (when you have much less pressing issues to deal with) we get a tick box on our shipping choices that says "please don't use Amazon, even if it takes a million more years for my book to arrive" or something similar, I would appreciate it. If it's not possible, I understand.

At least as a test run for the rollout of the final product next year, this hopefully has provided Paizo some valuable insights and lessons learned.

(And I'm really not fussed about the books coming late. I'm on vacation anyway and wouldn't have anyone to play with, and have plenty of other books to read. So many books! I've DLed my .pdfs and that'll be good enough for now. The playtest is 6 months or so, isn't it? There's time. Plus my books always come late because I have them shipped at work because we get package thieves in my neighborhood a lot, and so the books have to go through the terrifying, arcane and labyrinthine dimension known as "the loading dock at work." I'm used to getting my books 1-2 weeks later than expected and I will live.)


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DeathQuaker wrote:
My one note of disappointment is that part of why I order direct through Paizo, in addition to better support the company itself, is so I can avoid using Amazon whenever possible. I understand that when I use Amazon, these "great prices" and low shipping I am getting are on the backs of hundreds of underpaid and often downright abused distribution workers. I would much rather save my money for the things that matter to me and buy from a company that I believe has much better ethical practices, even if it means paying more.

Agreed, however...

DeathQuaker wrote:
By your choosing to use Amazon fulfillment without my consent, you have taken that choice I make for my personal ethics away from me. THAT does bother me a great deal.

This was announced a long time ago, that they would use Amazon for fulfillment of all orders, including those ordered from Paizo.com. So that information was available for everyone to act upon.


Well in the UK, Amazon are still showing ...

Not yet dispatched
Delivery estimate: We need a little more time to provide you with a good estimate. We'll notify you via e-mail as soon as we have an estimated delivery date.

Would be nice to get the store credit over this side of the pond :-)

Cheers,
SteveC.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I ordered from Amazon back in March, and my package is now out for delivery.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Same.

Scarab Sages

Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Haven't received notification that mine has shipped yet.


Sorry to hear about the trouble with delivery. On the other hand, I'm happy to report that the pdf download worked very smoothly for me at 6.15 PST. Well done!


Very kind of you to offer us the credit. Thank you.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Thank you Paizo, for your excellent games, customer service, and offering of credit due to Amazon’s shipping delays. Clearly Amazon, a company closing in on a trillion dollar evaluation, doesn’t have fraction of the quality and customer service that Paizo does!

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Pedro Sampaio wrote:
I know you are probably very busy, but any chance you could give an expected delivery to Brazil (if possible, of course)?

One shipped yesterday with a delivery estimate of August 16.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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yeahgday wrote:
P.S. is there any eta on Australia?

The earliest I see, 23 hours ago, is going to WA via IPARCEL with a delivery estimate of August 22. The latest, from 2 hours ago, is going to Queensland via IMEX with a delivery estimate of September 6. I also searched for one going to NSW—the first I found shipped yesterday afternoon via DHL with a delivery estimate of August 9.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Maps Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:
sojudramaqueen wrote:

Vic,

When you say 6 order shipped, I was thinking "shipments". Did you mean individual orders? Like they had just barely begun shipping anything at all? Oh dear.
Correct—they completed 6 individual customer orders from July 28–31.

Wow, just wow. That is so grossly negligent that it's astounding.

While I appreciate the $15 credit, I'm still not thrilled with how all of this has been handled from the start. Forcing Amazon even when ordering from Paizo.com, Amazon Prime not factored in shipping, no normal Paizo shipping discounts, and no tracking to even know where my package is. I truly hope Paizo has learned a lesson from this. Either no future deals like this with Amazon, or have very, very clear milestone goals for shipping and delivery in the contract with clear penalties/remedial actions on their part.

Six whole orders over a four day window... What a complete and total joke.

Wayfinders

I haven't gone through all 4 pages yet, so this may have been mentioned. If in the US and yiu have USPS informed delivery activated, you can look on the packages tab. In my case, shortly after the amazon intent to ship email, a couple of labels were created and awaiting receipt of package by USPS. One of those finally gained traction and also states it's Paizo (and arriving today). The second label still hasn't been received by USPS. So, not sure if my stuff is in two packages or not. At least PDFs downloaded

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Cat-thulhu wrote:
Im very curious how the Australian orders are being fulfilled. Amazon US doesnt deal with Australia since we started putting GST on all packages, in fact all reference to Australia has been removed from the US site. Australians MUST operate through amazon australia.

My understanding is that Amazon has chosen not to sell to Australia from other countries because they don't want to deal with the new GST. But Fulfillment by Amazon isn't selling, it's just shipping. Paizo did the selling, and would be responsible for the GST. However, the new GST rules applied to orders placed (not shipped) after July 1, weeks after playtest preorders closed, so we did not need to collect or remit GST on these orders.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Big V wrote:
How they priorise the shipments, usa first etc?

US, Canadian, and other international orders have all been intermixed as far as timing goes. There's no discernible pattern to it.


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Rulebook Subscriber

I have an Amazon package showing up with no delivery date yet on Informed Delivery, and I'm not expecting anything else from them. Here's hoping!

Scarab Sages

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Vic, any chance you can get Amazon to email us when they actually ship our order and/or give us some sort of tracking info?

seems the least they could do

Scarab Sages

Joana wrote:
I have an Amazon package showing up with no delivery date yet on Informed Delivery, and I'm not expecting anything else from them. Here's hoping!

What is this?


I ordered through Amazon as to take advantage of my Amazon Prime shipping and the last bit of my Amazon employee discount.

I ordered two sets of the Pathfinder Playtest (softcover book, map and adventure) when they opened pre-orders, and these orders still haven't shipped (one order had an email update telling me these items are delayed).

So while some Amazon orders are going out, not all are getting shipped.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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EJDean wrote:
Was Amazon in charge of general distribution to game stores too? Reportedly, playtest copies haven't arrived in the UK yet, only arriving at the European distributor, Asmodee, on Wednesday. Doomsday Dawn and the flip mats are supposedly still sitting on pallets in New York as well.

I'm not in current contact with the people who would know for sure—they're in meetings all day at Gen con, but I've sent an inquiry. That said, I was told yesterday that European retailers have received product. (Also, our UK distributor is Esdevium, not Asmodee.)


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Rulebook Subscriber
Tallow wrote:
Joana wrote:
I have an Amazon package showing up with no delivery date yet on Informed Delivery, and I'm not expecting anything else from them. Here's hoping!
What is this?

Informed Delivery

If you're in the US, and if your area is included in the program, and if Amazon Fulfillment is shipping your package by USPS, it ought to let you know if you've got a package coming and when to expect it.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Ectar wrote:
$15 store credit is bitterly amusing in one aspect: it's the cost of a soft-cover before shipping. So you actually have to spend ~4$ to use it. Which is great if you were planning on getting something through Paizo anyway. I honestly probably wasn't going to buy another Paizo product until PF2.

The store credit will wait for you.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Tallow wrote:
Joana wrote:
I have an Amazon package showing up with no delivery date yet on Informed Delivery, and I'm not expecting anything else from them. Here's hoping!
What is this?

USPS Informed Delivery service. I recommend it to anyone that receives a lot of mail.

Vic Wertz wrote:
(Also, our UK distributor is Esdevium, not Asmodee.)

Those sound infernal. Are the UK distributors run by devils? :)


Some of you guys need to give it a rest. You're acting like you're waiting on a kickstarter project that's ten years old. So you won't have your book right away, you'll survive. There's a copy with your name that you'll get in time.

Scarab Sages

Joana wrote:
Tallow wrote:
Joana wrote:
I have an Amazon package showing up with no delivery date yet on Informed Delivery, and I'm not expecting anything else from them. Here's hoping!
What is this?

Informed Delivery

If you're in the US, and if your area is included in the program, and if Amazon Fulfillment is shipping your package by USPS, it ought to let you know if you've got a package coming and when to expect it.

Signed up, and no packages are listed as coming. So either I'm not in the 30% shipped yet, or its not going USPS.

Scarab Sages

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Brother Fen wrote:
Some of you guys need to give it a rest. You're acting like you're waiting on a kickstarter project that's ten years old. So you won't have your book right away, you'll survive. There's a copy with your name that you'll get in time.

Its not that the timing bothers me, its the fact I payed more for shipping than I would have otherwise.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Rulebook Subscriber
Tallow wrote:
Joana wrote:
Tallow wrote:
Joana wrote:
I have an Amazon package showing up with no delivery date yet on Informed Delivery, and I'm not expecting anything else from them. Here's hoping!
What is this?

Informed Delivery

If you're in the US, and if your area is included in the program, and if Amazon Fulfillment is shipping your package by USPS, it ought to let you know if you've got a package coming and when to expect it.

Signed up, and no packages are listed as coming. So either I'm not in the 30% shipped yet, or its not going USPS.

Mine wasn't there yesterday; it just popped up this morning. So it might be worth keeping an eye on day to day.

Of course, as you say, they might not ship it to you by USPS, either.

Shadow Lodge

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Brother Fen wrote:
Some of you guys need to give it a rest. You're acting like you're waiting on a kickstarter project that's ten years old. So you won't have your book right away, you'll survive. There's a copy with your name that you'll get in time.

Can confirm, first Kickstarter delivered a year late, three years after funding.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Maps Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Brother Fen wrote:
Some of you guys need to give it a rest. You're acting like you're waiting on a kickstarter project that's ten years old. So you won't have your book right away, you'll survive. There's a copy with your name that you'll get in time.

Apples and oranges. With Kickstarter, I know I'm investing in an unknown that may not happen, might happen but is late, or may go as planned. This is a known company that completely dropped the ball.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Turelus wrote:
Vic I noticed in the orders your checked you didn't list the UK, are you able to check any UK orders to give us a rough ETA? As the EU countries listed have a few days difference in them.

Some UK orders:

London, shipped yesterday, Delivery Estimate: September 6
Cumbria, shipped yesterday, Delivery Estimate: September 6
Aberdeen, shipped today, Delivery Estimate: September 6

Not UK:
Ireland, shipped yesterday, Delivery Estimate: September 6


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber

All this whining... They gave you 15 bucks, and they are making it right... What more would you like??? Maybe their first born?

Thanks Paizo and their management team!


Hl'adac wrote:
I haven't gone through all 4 pages yet, so this may have been mentioned. If in the US and yiu have USPS informed delivery activated, you can look on the packages tab. In my case, shortly after the amazon intent to ship email, a couple of labels were created and awaiting receipt of package by USPS. One of those finally gained traction and also states it's Paizo (and arriving today). The second label still hasn't been received by USPS. So, not sure if my stuff is in two packages or not. At least PDFs downloaded

This is a fairly standard procedure. The first shipping notification is basically a dummy notification, generated by their system.


Starfinder Charter Superscriber

If the simplest explanation is sometimes right, I wonder if Amazon Fulfilment just got the significance of the key date wrong: they thought books shouldn’t *ship* until August 2, instead of that books should *arrive* on August 2.


Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:
Turelus wrote:
Vic I noticed in the orders your checked you didn't list the UK, are you able to check any UK orders to give us a rough ETA? As the EU countries listed have a few days difference in them.

Some UK orders:

London, shipped yesterday, Delivery Estimate: September 6
Cumbria, shipped yesterday, Delivery Estimate: September 6
Aberdeen, shipped today, Delivery Estimate: September 6

Not UK:
Ireland, shipped yesterday, Delivery Estimate: September 6

Thanks for the update Vic. Are all UK orders going to be a month late? If so, I assume the Flip Mat Pack's usability during Doomsday Dawn is going to be reduced somewhat (haven't checked the PDF yet to see which maps are used when).

I appreciate you are doing your best to resolve this but having paid out over $100 dollars for the pre-order products I really did not expect they would be arriving over a month after release. I expected there might be a couple of days delay for international shipments (although you were more reassuring on that in a recent post) but I would not have ordered them through Paizo if I had known a delay of this magnitude was even remotely likely.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Tallow wrote:

Vic, any chance you can get Amazon to email us when they actually ship our order and/or give us some sort of tracking info?

seems the least they could do

In accordance with our Privacy Policy, we provide shipping services with only the minimum customer information required to ship your order. That does not include your email address.

Scarab Sages

Vic Wertz wrote:
Tallow wrote:

Vic, any chance you can get Amazon to email us when they actually ship our order and/or give us some sort of tracking info?

seems the least they could do

In accordance with our Privacy Policy, we provide shipping services with only the minimum customer information required to ship your order. That does not include your email address.

I see, and I know it would be too much to ask that Paizo try to check the Amazon orders and see where they are and then email us individually. That sort of manual attention would likely kill your ability to do anything else customer service/shipping wise for a month.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Medriev wrote:
Are all UK orders going to be a month late?

Sorry—I have no ability to answer that, other than I expect there will be SOME variability.


Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:
Medriev wrote:
Are all UK orders going to be a month late?
Sorry—I have no ability to answer that, other than I expect there will be SOME variability.

Thanks Vic. This is hugely disappointing and, as I posted above I'm not sure why this issue came to light so late in the day. It is also extremely frustrating to have no way to obtain info about individual orders.

I really admire Paizo's commitment to customer service and the fact that you are on the boards today answering queries is commendable but $100 (including $26 for shipping) is not an insignificant amount of money for me to layout. To then find out the products may not arrive until September is a huge let down.

I assume there will be an examination of what went wrong here in terms of oversight of Amazon's processes as my faith in Paizo has been damaged by this experience.


Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber

Hi Vic! Is there any info on Spain orders?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

This is definitely insanely frustrating seeing as how i and many others went with a direct order from Paizo over a retailer in hopes to support them more fully and to avoid shipping delays (i thought something like this happened for Starfinder with retailers, could be mistaken). I don't regret that but man it is super frustrating.

That being said thanks alot for the communication and the 15 dollar credit. Thanks for being very open on the problem and clear about it.

Please give Amazon hell for me. They should not have done this.

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