How much would you be willing to pay for more content?


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Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

The question of increasing the price we pay for scenarios in exchange for more scenarios per year has been touched on in a couple other threads recently, so I figured I'd make a place to discuss just that (with an obligatory poll, of course).

Throwing out a hypothetical: if the price of scenarios was raised to $4.99 (instead of $3.99), but maybe 3 scenarios were released per month (as opposed to 2 per month), would you support that price increase?

Mind you, since I don't work for Paizo, I don't know if that's even a feasible business plan. This is just for discussion purposes.

Other questions to consider:

What other requests would you make in exchange for a higher price?

What is the upper limit you'd pay per scenario?

What concerns would you have with such a decision?

Is having 2 scenarios per month adequate? Would 3 per month be too many?

How much more would you be willing to pay for Module PDFs?

I'm sure these are discussions that the staff at Paizo has had behind closed doors in the past. Let's have a in-depth dialogue so they can hear our feedback =)

And be sure to "like" the decision below that best corresponds with your thoughts.

Scarab Sages 5/5 ⦵⦵

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Yes!

For various reasons discussed in this thread, I'd be willing to pay a higher price for scenarios.

Scarab Sages 5/5 ⦵⦵

7 people marked this as a favorite.

No!

For various reasons discussed in this thread, I'd rather keep the price of scenarios as is.

Dark Archive

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Maps Subscriber

I could do $5/scenario, 3/month, with Pathfinder Advantage, and the never-implemented-but-frequently-wished-for SUBSCRIPTION OPTION for us non-VOs who buy every scenario.

I mean, really.

Subscriptions: Have AP, Maps, Modules

WANT: Pathfinder Society

It's the highest throughput piece of the company. I'm willing to guarantee it cash flow, let me already.

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I hadn't even considered subscriptions.

Grand Lodge 5/5

I personally like the current release rate. With Core becoming available they effectively made it so they have approximately 1 scenario per week come out as they usually have about 26 scenarios per year.

So those of us that play every other week don't run out of scenarios and keep up with the new scenarios, and those who play every week don't run out of options to play.

I really think that introducing the PFS Core campaign was a good decision.

As far as prices go, I'd rather they not increase it. Being a store coordinator, the cost of running games falls on me more than anyone else and I really don't want the cost to coordinate games increase. I buy every scenario so if there is an emergency I can run games as a backup GM.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Maps Subscriber
Nefreet wrote:
I hadn't even considered subscriptions.

Subscriptions would be the way you get enough cash flow to justify the hiring of Compton 2.0 so there's enough people to do this job and work on awesome like the Strategy Guide. I know I'm not the audience, but I know enough people that ARE the audience that I want it to pass around to THEM.

3/5

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Actually, with season 5, I've started buying all the scenarios (more or less). I wouldn't mind a subscription option.

As to how much I want to pay? There's not really a solid number for me, atm. I'd want to see what the price Paizo would would need to charge to get the funding that they would need to create 50% more of their quality scenarios every year. Is that $5? Is that $6? More?

Scarab Sages 4/5

I'd pay an extra dollar per scenario, if it meant more scenarios would be released. I don't think the math will add up for that, though, as I don't think most scenarios are profitable in the short term. We don't really have sales numbers from Paizo, but I do know that they give away a large number of scenarios to conventions, to venture officers, etc. as an example on the low end, other threads have mentioned there have only been somewhere around 100 tables of Eyes of the Ten run. That number is probably a little higher, but going with that, we're talking $400 revenue per scenario in that arc. I can't imagine that comes anywhere close to covering the cost of development, and that's assuming every table bought a unique copy of the scenario. I would imagine a 1-5 scenario would have sales an order of magnitude higher than that, but how big that difference is, and how long it takes to get to the break even number, I don't know.

PFS is a marketing tool for Paizo, and I imagine it's a loss leader. The 32 page modules have a price point at $10, and I imagine scenarios would both need to cost something close to that (maybe $1-2 less) and stop being given away for free before they could break even in a reasonable time. In other words, Paizo is likely absorbing a significant portion of the cost of developing a scenario, at least in the short term (until there are enough sales to make up for that cost reduction, which may never happen for some scenarios).

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

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Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Would paying $8 for a 2xp, essentially double-length scenario, geared towards level 12+ PCs, be something that'd interest people?

I mention it because it interests me, going off of the style of Eyes part 1.

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Maps Subscriber
Ferious Thune wrote:

We don't really have sales numbers from Paizo, but I do know that they give away a large number of scenarios to conventions, to venture officers, etc. as an example on the low end, other threads have mentioned there have only been somewhere around 100 tables of Eyes of the Ten run.

Eyes is INCREDIBLY difficult to schedule, because generating exactly 33XP across a party of 4 to 6 players to then play 5 sessions worth of PFS content is also a challenge.

The 100 number was a year or so ago - and based on when PFS started to really ramp in popularity, the Eyes uptake rate seems based on my observations to have hit a critical mass within the past year - I wonder how many more tables of it have run in the past 12 months versus the previous 24.

Audience size for the scenario product line is definitely a thing, and if the +50% production rate was loosely organized around Drogon's distribution of authoring, it would provide the most content at the most played levels, ensuring highest uptake on the lowest mechanical difficulty to produce (many things are symmetric in cost in the production process - layout, line editing, art orders and insertion and the like; the thing which is not is encounter design and stat block review: the higher the tier of the adventure, the more complex this step and more chances to get it Very Wrong.)

Scarab Sages 5/5 Venture-Captain, Netherlands aka Woran

I am willing to pay a little more for scenario's if that means we get more of them.

Personally I dont feel the need for more scenarios yet (PFS is small where I'm from), but I can understand the need for more if your area sees a lot of regular play or has been running PFS for years.

Core did alleviate some of that need. Also, scenarios are going back to a more simpler design.

So ultimately I would like to pay more to see a couple of unusual scenarios released with the extra money I put in. Wether that is unusal level ranges (a lvl +12 scenario would be awesome), or quircky mechanics.
They dont have to be released every month. Weird scenarios require more time do get right. But every other month would be cool.

Of course, this is all a weird personal wish. I'd still pay more for the output of normal scenarios. But I am currently financially stable (not everyone is), and while buying a scenario itself is not a huge cost, GMing PFS in general can be quite expensive for all the other items you need to provide.

Scarab Sages 4/5

TetsujinOni wrote:
Ferious Thune wrote:

We don't really have sales numbers from Paizo, but I do know that they give away a large number of scenarios to conventions, to venture officers, etc. as an example on the low end, other threads have mentioned there have only been somewhere around 100 tables of Eyes of the Ten run.

Eyes is INCREDIBLY difficult to schedule, because generating exactly 33XP across a party of 4 to 6 players to then play 5 sessions worth of PFS content is also a challenge.

The 100 number was a year or so ago - and based on when PFS started to really ramp in popularity, the Eyes uptake rate seems based on my observations to have hit a critical mass within the past year - I wonder how many more tables of it have run in the past 12 months versus the previous 24.

That's fair, and I did try to account for that with my order of magnitude statement about other scenarios. What we don't know is, does the typical 1-5 run 1,000 tables? 2,000? 10,000? More? Less?

Even if Eyes is at 300 tables run now, and every one of them purchased the scenario at full price, that's $1,200 over 5 years for each of parts 2-4 and $2,400 for part 1. Part 1, Requiem for the Red Raven, is a double length scenario at $7.99. As much as I would like to see a new seeker arc, I think there's a better chance of convincing Mike and John to do one as a special for next year's Gencon than trying to make it make financial sense. If they're willing to do a one off Aspis scenario, they might be willing to do a shortened Seeker arc. I think a 3XP module equivalent length arc would be ideal. That way no one gets stuck in between levels like happens currently with Eyes or with Wardens, but if a 2XP double scenario makes more sense, I'd take that, too.

EDIT: I even think a price point closer to the current 64-page modules would sell for a Seeker module. It's a very dedicated audience that gets to 12th level in PFS, and with 5-7 people wanting to participate, splitting the cost of an $18 module shouldn't be a big deal. But even that price point may not make sense financially, given that a Seeker module is likely to sell far fewer copies than a general PFRPG module.

3/5

Now I know this is going to be horribly unpopular opinion and I'm most likely going to get horribly flamed for this BUT:

I'de rather scenario prices stay the same and instead Paizo just start selling PFS Boons to generate additional cash flow.

In my perfect world, scenarios should be as low-to-no cost as possible as a further GM incentive. And hey, maybe with enough freemium items like a Free-to-Play MMO there could even be a reduction in scenario cost!

Scarab Sages 4/5

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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber

The problem with paying (more) for scenarios is that the cost is directly to the GM. In many cases, the GM is a VO or a convention GM (and the cost is always Zero). Raising those prices may not actually increase revenue for Paizo (it may just encourage people to acquire those adventure by other means).

Perhaps a Kickstarter? I'd rather see PLAYERS pay for more content, not GMs. It has always irked me that I have to pay $$ to run a game for someone else (and not the other way around).

I think a Kickstarter like event on the Paizo website where you could raise money for specific things. Then you get direct, real feedback from players as to what they want. Want 5 extra adventures in 2016? Then we need to raise X.00$. Want a new Seeker set? Then it's 5X.00$$ (etc.) You can even have two or three parallel "investments". Then repeat the process in 2017 if it shows merit.

I currently don't need additional content. But my spare time is the limiter on play, not release rate. CORE campaign just guaranteed I don't need to worry about additional content for a long time (possibly ever).

Sovereign Court 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden aka Ascalaphus

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I'd be willing to pay for slightly higher useability through editing;

  • Ensure that all the stats for an encounter fit on the same two-page spread, at least per tier. Flipping back and forth is really annoying.
  • More use of techniques like bullet points or making words bold or somesuch to highlight the key clues in pieces of description. In general, make it easier to find essential passages.
  • All templates fully applied to monster stats. Applying templates on the fly is annoying, and a GM who hasn't done so may also make monsters tougher than they need to be.

    Of particular note is the young template. There's two different ways to apply it (the quick vs. the rebuild method) which produce very different changes in monster power on smallish and ranged/finesse monsters. The full rebuild tends to make those monsters far more accurate so it's really not a power-down. If the stat block came with the template applied, we'd run into fewer of these shenanigans.


Ascalaphus wrote:

I'd be willing to pay for slightly higher useability through editing;

  • Ensure that all the stats for an encounter fit on the same two-page spread, at least per tier. Flipping back and forth is really annoying.
  • More use of techniques like bullet points or making words bold or somesuch to highlight the key clues in pieces of description. In general, make it easier to find essential passages.
  • All templates fully applied to monster stats. Applying templates on the fly is annoying, and a GM who hasn't done so may also make monsters tougher than they need to be.

    Of particular note is the young template. There's two different ways to apply it (the quick vs. the rebuild method) which produce very different changes in monster power on smallish and ranged/finesse monsters. The full rebuild tends to make those monsters far more accurate so it's really not a power-down. If the stat block came with the template applied, we'd run into fewer of these shenanigans.


This. If I'm paying extra for these scenarios then they need to be complete and of maximum usability. Since they are PDF's page count shouldn't be a concern. Fit each encounters statblocks on a two page spread. Put all the templates on the creatures where called for.

The easier it is for me to prep and run the better.

Dark Archive

Daigotsu wrote:

Now I know this is going to be horribly unpopular opinion and I'm most likely going to get horribly flamed for this BUT:

I'de rather scenario prices stay the same and instead Paizo just start selling PFS Boons to generate additional cash flow.

In my perfect world, scenarios should be as low-to-no cost as possible as a further GM incentive. And hey, maybe with enough freemium items like a Free-to-Play MMO there could even be a reduction in scenario cost!

It does open up a whole can of works to start down the freemium path. It would need to be *very* carefully balanced - they would need to be things that don't power up a character in any serious way beyond the realm of what is possible without them - either things that just give a bit of starting flexibility (like race boons), or flavor items.

That said, if it happened, I'd be willing to buy a few boons - even as much as the books can cost, hour for hour PFS is probably one of the most frugal bits of entertainment I participate in :)

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Maps Subscriber
Jessex wrote:


This. If I'm paying extra for these scenarios then they need to be complete and of maximum usability. Since they are PDF's page count shouldn't be a concern. Fit each encounters statblocks on a two page spread. Put all the templates on the creatures where called for.

The easier it is for me to prep and run the better.

Quality control is a thing. Have you checked out the latest couple of months of S6 scenarios? The statblocks in the PDF are LARGELY here.

I refuse to embrace the two page spread callout - that limits complex encounters in 7-11 content far too much.

I'm pretty happy with where things are in the latest crop (even in Kirin and Kraken, which has some SUPER complex stat blocks for PFS).

Shadow Lodge

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I posted some thoughts on this in the 7-11 thread.

But yeah, Paizo certainly needs to revisit their PFS scenario pricing as it's largely unchanged despite the effort/work to double the word counts (if John's comparison numbers for Season 6 to Season 0 are correct) for scenarios.

There's tons of battle-tested strategies to extract more revenue from a monthly digital product they can employ and have a win-win for themselves and their customers (through the hiring of multiple additional editors).

1. They should raise the price of scenarios. They can probably get all the way to $6.99 (42% increase) with I'd bet no more than a 20% drop in first quarter sales. That's the advtange of being in an industry where your customers are both (a) extremely passionate and invested in the product and (b) want access to new content as fast as humanly possibly. I don't know what the typical purchases in the first quarter of a newly released tier 1-5 are, but if you sell 10K at $3.99 and can switch to selling 7500 at $6.99 you've just paid for 2 new editors despite losing 2500 sales (some of which you'll get back in #3 below).

2. You offer subscriptions where the break is pretty sizable. This is almost always win-win as the customer looks at the value equation of "products they might use" in a highly favorable light when any discount is offered. If you can subscribe to all three released scenarios per month for $15 (savings over $21), sales will go up on scenarios that potentially would otherwise have low sales (due to reviews, being in less popular tiers, locales, etc).

3. You can offer sales, bi-annually or quarterly. If someone is price sensitive to the subscription and the $7 sticker, a 50% off sale (or coupons limited to say 5 scenarios) can bridge the gap and win back some of those 2500 customers that were lost at the price hike. It basically means, if you're patient enough to wait a few months to play something, it's less expensive.

4. Older scenarios can be cheaper than newer ones. There's enough of a backlog of older scenarios that can be kept at $3.99 or $4.99 prices that GMs who are hurting for cash can focus on those. I'd likely do a quick analysis and see where the avaerage word count shot up from <7500 words to 10K-15K+ words and have all scenarios prior to that point at the lower price-per-scenario.

5. Scenarios can now be run twice for credit. This simple change means that some GMs will perceive double the value from their purchase.

6. Scenarios can probably exist at these rates at a 20% reduced wordcount. Authors can probably be given additional restrictions on custom/templated enemies - i.e. scenarios essentially feature 2 encounters from-the-Bestiary and a max of 2 NPCs that are build out with class levels or anything special. Raise prices while lowering costs = double the win!

7. In some cases "extended length scenarios" can be offered that exceed the typical word count or Bestiary restrictions. These can be priced higher for ad-hoc purchases ($9.99) for the extra 25% length. For subscribers, they get them at the same rate as if there weren't these longer special ones.

There's an old adage - if a ton of your customers are telling you to raise your prices, you've already waited way too long to have raised them and left a truckload of revenue on the table you're never going to be able to get back.


TetsujinOni wrote:
Jessex wrote:


This. If I'm paying extra for these scenarios then they need to be complete and of maximum usability. Since they are PDF's page count shouldn't be a concern. Fit each encounters statblocks on a two page spread. Put all the templates on the creatures where called for.

The easier it is for me to prep and run the better.

Quality control is a thing. Have you checked out the latest couple of months of S6 scenarios? The statblocks in the PDF are LARGELY here.

I refuse to embrace the two page spread callout - that limits complex encounters in 7-11 content far too much.

I'm pretty happy with where things are in the latest crop (even in Kirin and Kraken, which has some SUPER complex stat blocks for PFS).

I have a lot of trouble believing that most single tier encounters won't fit on two pages even at 7-11. If a rare occasion occurs where a boss requires a 2 page statblock I would be fine with that as well but the goal should always be to make it as easy as possible for the GM at the table.

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

As long as they're in the scenario SOMEWHERE i'm happy.

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Has there ever been a discussion before on why scenarios aren't available per subscription?

5/5

Nefreet wrote:
Has there ever been a discussion before on why scenarios aren't available per subscription?

It's been asked numerous times...I believe most of them are in Website Feedback.

Long story short, two main reasons stand out that I remember. One, their subscriptions are based on shipping physical product to trigger a release of PDF's to accounts. Two, what does it really give the consumer in terms of value, as there's not that many fewer clicks to do once a month when you buy scenarios and download them here vs. getting a notice and coming here to download them once a month. So far, Paizo has felt that wasn't enough of a real incentive to spend the manpower creating the subscription model for the PDF only product from what I can tell.

EDIT: Here's one of the threads if you wish to peruse.

Shadow Lodge

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Since it's known that the word count of scenarios is a function of Paizo's cost and editing man-hours required, I went ahead and grabbed a couple scenarios I had handy to do word count estimates.

(Note: my estimates include junk like the page number and my name in the watermark)

Silent Tide 8000
Slave Pits of Absalom 6500
Mists of Mwangi 5000

Night March of Kalkamedes 10,000

Horn of Aroden 11,500
Library of the Lion 13,500
Scars of the Third Crusade 14,000
Wounded Wisp 16,000

I'm half-joking here, but I'd gladly take a month with 4-6 scenarios released if there could be 4-6 scenarios like Mists of Mwangi in the place of 2 scenarios like Scars + Wisp.

Fictional month with 2 scenarios (Scars + Wisp) = 30,000 words

Fictional month with 4 scenarios (Silent Tide, Slave Pits, Mists of Mwangi, Kalkamedes) = 29,500 words

Paizo Employee Contributor

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Devil's advocate here.

Wisp was designed to include a replay element. Using that as a demo scenario (which was outlined to have a higher word count than average) is not a fair assessment when compared to single shots from season 0.

I can't comment on Scars, as I've not read it...

The other scenarios (and from what I've heard of Scars) are primarily social scenarios, with lots of background and RP elements. Silent Tide and Mists are predominantly "Kick in and do things" with exceptional adherence to theme. Kalkamedes is as railroad of a scenario as you can get, while still being AMAZING.

Grand Lodge

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Nefreet wrote:

The question of increasing the price we pay for scenarios in exchange for more scenarios per year has been touched on in a couple other threads recently, so I figured I'd make a place to discuss just that (with an obligatory poll, of course).

Throwing out a hypothetical: if the price of scenarios was raised to $4.99 (instead of $3.99), but maybe 3 scenarios were released per month (as opposed to 2 per month), would you support that price increase?

Mind you, since I don't work for Paizo, I don't know if that's even a feasible business plan. This is just for discussion purposes.

I would. As long as there is no drop in quality I would happily pay an extra dollar for an extra scenario a month. Perhaps more. Many of the local players have issues with scheduling and more scenarios is a huge gate to alleviating that problem.

Quote:

Other questions to consider:

What other requests would you make in exchange for a higher price?

Maybe a lower priority on 5-9's. They really aren't terribly popular around here.

Quote:
What is the upper limit you'd pay per scenario?

Truthfully I think I would be willing to pay as much as $7 per scenario, but I only purchase what is necessary and have others who help me leverage the financial burden of buying the scenarios for our game day. If we could get a large scale number increase and maintain the quality we have now $6 would definitely be reasonable.

Quote:
What concerns would you have with such a decision?

As I've already outlined, I would hate for scenario quality to drop at all in exchange for more releases. I only want the increase if we can guarantee continued scenario quality, and at the rate the general scenario has been increasing. I want our written content to keep getting better.

Quote:
Is having 2 scenarios per month adequate? Would 3 per month be too many?

Perhaps in the long run two per month would be alright, but currently we have many players in the Bay Area who have little to no scenarios to actually play, our VC and some of our prominent players all falling victim to this. I don't think 3/month would be too much at all.

Quote:
How much more would you be willing to pay for Module PDFs?

I'm not really sure. Maybe $12 or $13, but we don't really run too many modules anymore.

Quote:
I'm sure these are discussions that the staff at Paizo has had behind closed doors in the past. Let's have a in-depth dialogue so they can hear our feedback =)

Well I hope this is helpful then. I certainly think it's a worthwhile discussion to be having. Looking forward to paizo's feedback on this subject.

Shadow Lodge

I'll begin by saying that in an ideal world, Paizo would have all my money and I would have all their scenarios.

The reason - for me, at least - that it's so easy to get into and to keep GMing PFS scenarios is the low price point. $4/scenario is a hells yeah for me.

That number does bank up. I know that 10 scenarios is going to cost me $40 and 100 is going to cost me $400 in the longterm.

But if you start raising that number, it banks up. Suddenly $5 or $7 per scenario is looking a lot less attractive. For one scenario, it's likely still no skin off anyone's back. But GMs are usually intending to pay for scenarios - not rulebooks - over the long haul. $50-70 becomes a lot more questionable than $40, and that's just for the first ten.

Raising the price might mean more GMs thinking twice before buying at all.

Maybe there's a solution like the subscription model to satisfy everyone?

Paizo Employee 5/5 Developer

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I'm just popping in to note that I'm following this discussion. Deciding what the scenarios cost is above my pay grade, so to speak, but it's something I can bring up in an upcoming meeting (and probably won't have an answer I can provide here immediately afterward). In the meantime, the conversation is fascinating.

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

For me, personally, $4/scenario is no sweat off my wallet. I spend more in one visit at Starbucks (and that's a more often occurrence).

$5/scenario is something I'd totally be willing to do in exchange for more content. It wouldn't even have to be an extra scenario a month. Maybe as little as six a year, with half of those being for level 12+.

For some reason, $6/scenario is where I start to hesitate in my acceptance. A $5 bill is tangible. $6 seems like I'm handing over twice as many bills.

Retail perceptions can be fascinating sometimes.

Grand Lodge

Just to chime in here:

As a few have mentioned already, PFS (as with tabletop RPGs in general) tends to be a relatively expensive hobby, especially for GMs. I'm hesitant to lend support for raising price-points such that less affluent members of the community get squeezed out, either by choice or necessity. This can be mitigated with careful effort by local players/GMs, but that effort isn't free or automatic.

As far as I see it (and John/Paizo would have a much better handle on this, obviously) there are two ways to increase revenue for more content:

1. Raise the price of content.
2. Expand the player/GM base.

#1 is not guaranteed to increase revenue, as it may drive away potential customers (I have no data to say this would be true or not). For #2, if Paizo sells (to take a random number), 10000 copies of each scenario as opposed to 5000, revenue increases. But again, John/Paizo would actually have a sense of whether this is happening or not. My impression is that it is, if gradually.

I'm not saying a price-raise from $4 to $5 per scenario is a bad idea, but I do want to note that for some people it is NOT a negligible difference.

Shadow Lodge 4/5

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I would be willing to pay $1 more for the most current and recent content. Prices would decrease depending on the age of the season. When a new season starts, everything bumps down a price tier.

$4.99
Season 6
Season 5

$3.99
Season 4
Season 3

$2.99
Season 2
Season 1

$.99
Season 0

Shadow Lodge

Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

The price is irrelevant to me. I don't buy scenarios -- they are provided to me for free by the game organizers.

The only scenario that I have purchased with my own money is The Confirmation -- I could see doing that with another evergreen scenario so that I can proactively prepare an emergency scenario, but that's the only other likely sale I can see.

Part of my reluctance to buy scenarios is that I don't like to read adventures before I play them, and so I don't want to pay for a stockpile of things that I'll read "someday". There is a decent chance that I will eventually buy some of the old season full-season packs, once I've played enough of a season for that to be worthwhile.

Now that I've fully established my credentials as "not relevant to this discussion", I will say that I think you should be careful raising both the price *and* the frequency simultaneously. Going from $8/mo (2x4) to $15/mo (3x5) is a pretty big jump. I have quit subscriptions over that before. (Frequency increases are more likely to drive me off than price increases -- as much as I hate to say that, because this is an area where I *would* like to see more content. Of course, it's easy for me to say that, since I am *freeloading*.)

Silver Crusade 5/5 ⦵⦵ Venture-Captain, Germany—Bavaria

An increased scenario cost, is something I would be able to embrace, but frankly I think I made that suggestion quite some time ago, when it comes to the Pathfinder Rules Team and the speed of FAQs and scenarios.

In that case it didn't seem that throwing money at the problem would be a possible solution.

In this case, this essentially boils down, to giving more work to more authors as well as additional work with editing and creating art assets. That seems reasonable.

If possible I would love full page spreads of all custom maps in the scenario, so those with a large printer or access to a copy shop can easily print the maps. Not having to draw maps is a major time saver.

Also a picture for every VC should be an attainable goal, I really would love to get one for Venture Captain Calisro Benarry.

Grand Lodge 4/5 ⦵⦵ Venture-Agent, Indiana—Decatur aka Kadasbrass Loreweaver

Don't mind me, throwing some economics in to the thread to help since we are talking about cost and price and willingness to pay.

Point 1) One thing to consider, the cost of Scenarios are a fixed cost (writing, editing, software cost), regardless of whether they sell one scenario or a thousand the cost it took to make it remains the same, as opposed to most items that include fixed cost (editing, writing, publishing) and variable cost(raw materials of the book productions themselves that can go up or down depending on how many are produced).

Point 2) To truly maximize profits, you can engage in price discrimination. Some people are willing to pay more for scenarios, and some aren't willing to buy a scenario unless it is cheaper. To capitalize on this, you offer the same product at different price points. To be honest, everyone does this already, its nothing illegal. Examples: Offering a discount on something after a given period of time (or charging more when it is new), different price points for seating in a stadium, so forth, discount for high volume or group discounts). In essence you offer the item to each person based on what they are willing to pay.

Now Paizo does offer older scenarios at a 30% discount a couple times through out the year, this is a function of point 1 and 2, in that selling extra pdfs at these periods has very little cost and the revenue helps keep everything running smoothly, it also helps gain revenue from those of us that wouldn't buy them at regular price. I personally have blown more than my fair share on scenarios during these sales. Most of the scenarios I have ran or will be running between November and April I got during their pre-gencon sale.

I do think the Subscription idea is a good idea. I myself would have gotten one for scenarios before becoming a VL. Even the scenarios I wouldn't have gotten beforehand I would at least enjoy seeing some of the lore behind it.

As for releasing more scenarios per month, this is a tricky one, as has been said before, this creates more work in terms of editing and proof reading. The Core Campaign was a good way to increase play options for those that had seen it all, but I'm sure not everyone wants to replay a past scenario.

But if a monthly increase in scenarios isn't possible, maybe there is an alternative. What if there was an extra scenario every quarter? Maybe something special, not a Special scenario but special as in something that touches on old favorites (like GM Torch, Blakros, or involves unique rules, or is a sandbox, maybe the scenario gives special boons). Could tack on an extra buck or two to the price to cover the extra work it requires to make and have it cover a larger level range than the normal scenarios to appeal to a larger audience. Like the old level 1-7 scenarios. But I guess their experiment with the take on Quests may cover this basis already in some degree.

Silver Crusade 5/5 ⦵⦵ Venture-Captain, Germany—Bavaria

Kevin Ingle wrote:
Nefreet wrote:
Has there ever been a discussion before on why scenarios aren't available per subscription?

It's been asked numerous times...I believe most of them are in Website Feedback.

Long story short, two main reasons stand out that I remember. One, their subscriptions are based on shipping physical product to trigger a release of PDF's to accounts. Two, what does it really give the consumer in terms of value, as there's not that many fewer clicks to do once a month when you buy scenarios and download them here vs. getting a notice and coming here to download them once a month. So far, Paizo has felt that wasn't enough of a real incentive to spend the manpower creating the subscription model for the PDF only product from what I can tell.

EDIT: Here's one of the threads if you wish to peruse.

I can't believe I am actually saying this, since it happens to be a cancer in the video game world, but why not offer a season pass? Let people pre-purchase a wholes season of scenarios, add the scenarios to their account as soon as they come out... profit?

The Exchange 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Texas—Dallas & Ft. Worth aka Belafon

So if John is followng, he can certainly give a better accounting than me, but here is the main issue with just "being willing to pay more:" You have to have capacity in multiple departments.

Freelancers:
1. Authors
2. Artists
3. Cartographers
- All these positions are paid on assignment and it should be fairly easy to budget for.

Paizo Employees:
1. Developer (John)
2. Editor
3. Layout
4. Tech
5. (I've got to be missing a few here)
-The problem is that these people are - for the most part - shared across product lines. If the editing staff is working at full capacity Paizo will need to hire a new editor. But if only 1/4 of an editor is needed, they would be burning money until more product lines absorb that extra capacity.

Spoiler:
Pathfinder Society Organized Play was initially created as a not-for-profit division to basically serve as advertising for the other product lines. It's still doing that job admirably. Of course I don't know the numbers but Paizo is willing to break even or even absorb a small loss if the numbers bear out that Society is leading to more purchases in the other lines. But for what we are talking about here to happen Society needs to become at least marginally profitable in its own right.

Since Paizo is a private company we aren't going to get to see those numbers. But this is one situation where I think a little transparency might be hugely helpful to foster goodwill in the community. I know I would be very happy to see a message in April or May that said something like:

"OK, we completed our business case model and right now it looks like we would have to raise the price of scenarios to approximately $9.50 each to have the resources to add a third scenario each month. We realize that some portion of the player base would be willing to pay this amount but we want to keep Society widely accessible and feel that price point would be offputting to many of our loyal fans. We will continue to evaluate conditions; we are as eager as you to provide more content if it becomes feasible."

of course I'd rather see:
"Good news! We have determined that for $5/ scenario we can afford to add the resources for a third scenario each month. Positions have been opened on our "jobs" page and you can expect to see the third scenario appearing in 4 to 6 months."

Dark Archive

The more they sell I would assume they'd charge less. I don't see the scenarios as exceptionally better or worse then LG and I think that was mostly volunteer - or at least really low pay. Sorry.

Lantern Lodge 5/5

2 people marked this as a favorite.

For the sake of presenting the other side, I try and avoid spending money on scenarios altogether. $4 is a lot to pay to entertain someone else.

I volunteer to run scenarios at cons (to get them free) and pester my VOs to schedule scenarios I already own and/or borrow their copies (to avoid paying for them).

The price increase probably wouldn't affect me much (since I do my best to avoid it), but it'd discourage my few purchases even further.

tl;dr: Not everyone is pro-price increase.

Sovereign Court

FWIW we're probably the vocal minority. I would hope that Paizo has competent business and marketing type people that have enough data to make good pricing decisions.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Nevada—Las Vegas aka kinevon

Cebo wrote:
The more they sell I would assume they'd charge less. I don't see the scenarios as exceptionally better or worse then LG and I think that was mostly volunteer - or at least really low pay. Sorry.

Living Greyhawk used a very different model for scenarios.

Core was done by group-of-authors-A. Later seasons of LG Core were, seriously, brutal. Both in quality and in content. Even moderate optimization was nowhere near survivable. Some of the content I had experienced in LG Core made both Krune and the part of Bonekeep I have played look friendly. Where else would you find a mummy in an APL 1 scenario?

Each region had their own stable of authors, and the quality was all over the place. Material was vetted by the region's Triad, IIRC, and that was always something to behold. Especially when a convention came up, with their own Battle Interactive, and someone wanting to do a special Quest for one reason or another.

Heh. I remember a scenario where you almost automatically either had to get an Atonement, or retire the PC. And that applied to all the PCs, not just someone with Cleric or Paladin levels. Not to mention that some regions were downright Paladin unfriendly.

Silver Crusade 5/5 ⦵⦵ Venture-Captain, Germany—Bavaria

kinevon wrote:
Cebo wrote:
The more they sell I would assume they'd charge less. I don't see the scenarios as exceptionally better or worse then LG and I think that was mostly volunteer - or at least really low pay. Sorry.

Living Greyhawk used a very different model for scenarios.

Core was done by group-of-authors-A. Later seasons of LG Core were, seriously, brutal. Both in quality and in content. Even moderate optimization was nowhere near survivable. Some of the content I had experienced in LG Core made both Krune and the part of Bonekeep I have played look friendly. Where else would you find a mummy in an APL 1 scenario?

Each region had their own stable of authors, and the quality was all over the place. Material was vetted by the region's Triad, IIRC, and that was always something to behold. Especially when a convention came up, with their own Battle Interactive, and someone wanting to do a special Quest for one reason or another.

Heh. I remember a scenario where you almost automatically either had to get an Atonement, or retire the PC. And that applied to all the PCs, not just someone with Cleric or Paladin levels. Not to mention that some regions were downright Paladin unfriendly.

That sounds like it would be preferable to put your foot in a bacon slicer, rather than subject your self to something so antagonistic and impenetrable to new players.

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Jayson MF Kip wrote:

tl;dr: Not everyone is pro-price increase.

I'd encourage you (and at least a couple other posters thus far) to "like" the 3rd post in this thread.

Visibility is a good thing.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Nevada—Las Vegas aka kinevon

Sebastian Hirsch wrote:
kinevon wrote:
Cebo wrote:
The more they sell I would assume they'd charge less. I don't see the scenarios as exceptionally better or worse then LG and I think that was mostly volunteer - or at least really low pay. Sorry.

Living Greyhawk used a very different model for scenarios.

Core was done by group-of-authors-A. Later seasons of LG Core were, seriously, brutal. Both in quality and in content. Even moderate optimization was nowhere near survivable. Some of the content I had experienced in LG Core made both Krune and the part of Bonekeep I have played look friendly. Where else would you find a mummy in an APL 1 scenario?

Each region had their own stable of authors, and the quality was all over the place. Material was vetted by the region's Triad, IIRC, and that was always something to behold. Especially when a convention came up, with their own Battle Interactive, and someone wanting to do a special Quest for one reason or another.

Heh. I remember a scenario where you almost automatically either had to get an Atonement, or retire the PC. And that applied to all the PCs, not just someone with Cleric or Paladin levels. Not to mention that some regions were downright Paladin unfriendly.

That sounds like it would be preferable to put your foot in a bacon slicer, rather than subject your self to something so antagonistic and impenetrable to new players.

Heh. I was "lucky" enough to be in the Theocracy of the Pale when I joined LG. That is, pretty much, on par with having your PCs living in Razmiran, but with worship of any other deity being illegal.

And, actually, from what I saw, there were worse regions, like Iuz, where the region's deity/god-king was evil, and the best you could hope for during scenarios was to avoid needing an atonement to remain LG playable. That scenario I mentioned was an Iuz scenario that we got to play under a special LG rule, where we had a convention allowed to run out-of-region scenarios. Otherwise, you were limited to Core, your region, and your meta-region for scenarios.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

This is an interesting discussion.

To answer the OPs question I would be willing to pay 4.99 to support the production of 3 scenarios a month.

I may be wrong but I think the price has always been 3.99. I'm surprised the price hasn't gone up over the past years.

However I do think, if we had 3 scenarios a month, people would immediately begin clamoring for 4 scenarios a month.

Anyways, I would be willing to pay a little more for scenarios.

Silver Crusade

As one who saves up recyclables to buy scenarios, I would prefer they stay at $3.99. Though I would understand if it went up a dollar to cover the costs of todays market.

5/5 Venture-Agent, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East aka Pirate Rob

10 people marked this as a favorite.
Hima Flametinker III wrote:
As one who saves up recyclables to buy scenarios, I would prefer they stay at $3.99. Though I would understand if it went up a dollar to cover the costs of todays market.

Your next scenario is on me. Just PM me your email with Paizo.com and what scenario you want.

With 2 stars you've easily earned it.

Grand Lodge

Maybe it is a difference in how games are run locally, but I'd be interested in the impact the increase in scenario cost would have on gaming venues. (Where I play the store owns all the scenarios and loans them out to us for use, players pay $2 to play at the store and GMs get in free)

Due to this and Cons (there are 3 or 4 yearly within easy driving distance) I GM mostly for free (I've bought a couple of evergreens and Dragon Demand). So a price increase doesn't affect me terribly.

However, I worry that increasing both the number of scenarios and cost would lead to increased price to play at our local venue (while that isn't a gamebreaker for me it might be for others).

In an ideal world of course I'd like more content, and I'd even be able to pay for it. But the implications of doing both simultaneously may be greater than doing either one (i.e. current model ~$8/month, $1 increase ~$10/month, 1 extra scenario a month ~12, $1 more with 1 extra scenario ~15/month.) That is to say going up a dollar/scenario and adding an extra scenario/month comes out to almost a 100% increase in cost to buy all scenarios. (Again this wouldn't dissuade me personally but for others it might, and whether or not it hurts the local game would be a deciding factor for me)

Grand Lodge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Florida—Jacksonville aka Baronjett

I Like Sammy T's idea. Paizo could charge $1.00 extra for current season scenarios, then lower the price for past seasons, as long as Paizo is providing more content.

Dark Archive 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Minnesota—Twin Cities Metro South

pH unbalanced wrote:

The price is irrelevant to me. I don't buy scenarios -- they are provided to me for free by the game organizers.

This is the point i have thought about a lot. When I ran a game day, I was paying for 1/4th of the scenarios because the GMs asked me to. I didn't necessarily mind this, but over a year it added up. Not much choice when encouraging regulars to try GMing (aka conscripts).

I'd rather echo the opinion that quality/editing would need to improve more than additional scenarios being available.

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