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Otha wrote:But, as you say, the RPG market is probably different. I just don't know if Paizo can afford to lose the majority of their Grognards unless they can get at least a matching infusion of new players...
Thing is, grognards will eventually leave the game, it's a group with dwindling numbers by definition. You cannot add new grognards to the group there are, but you substract some of them every year. If not because some other reason, at least because they'll die of old age someday.
The game NEEDS new players for long term success. The game does not need grognards, can survive without them.
The problem here is just that picking up new players is riskier. It might work, or it might not, and if it doesn't work, Paizo will suffer, a lot. So it's a choice between taking a risk, and succeed or die in a blazing fireball of glory, or sit down and slowly wait your death.
You can certainly add new grognards, depending on your definition. Sure you cant add people who have literally been playing the game for years and wont leave the edition they started with, but you can certainly add new people who started on older editions and prefer them if grognards start them on that edition. I myself prefer 3.X almost exclusively (play some 5E now and then and other game systems) and have added plenty of other people who also prefer 3.X to the hobby.