On PDF pricing


Paizo General Discussion

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Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My personal opinion:
I can see where Paizo would see the 14.99 PDF price as to low.
And count me as one of the many who think the 24.99 PDf is way to high.

I do think that if they had priced the PDF at 19.99 almost no one would have blinked an eye.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Arnim Thayer wrote:
Of equal interest (and chagrin) is that the new Lost Omen Campaign line is quarterly—for now. But the Companion line and Campaign Setting line were once bi-monthly. Will Paizo commit to that quarterly schedule?

There are currently four books scheduled in the Lost Omens line in 2020. It's too early to say anything for sure for 2021, but I don't expect that pace to change.

Liberty's Edge

Steve Geddes wrote:
Arnim Thayer wrote:
I’m not trying to say that Paizo is cheating anyone—far from it! I’m just acting as the voice of my constituents and expressing their perspective. And to them, the new pdf price point seems too high.

Totall understood - for what it's worth, I think you're doing an excellent job of articulating a real problem for a not-insignificant segment of the playerbase. It's just not something I'm familiar with (since the only change from my group's perspective is that I get larger books less often).

It may well be that the sticker-shock fades with time (maybe there won't be the need for as many books to create a plethora of PFS characters as there used to be). Or it may be that this new paradigm just doesn't satisfy a significant cohort of customers.

Paizo will have to watch that as it develops. People like you advocating for the more casual player who probably doesn't post a lot are definitely doing the company a favor.

Thank you. I add you to the list of personalities in this thread that engaged in polite discourse on this subject.

Liberty's Edge

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Vic Wertz wrote:
Arnim Thayer wrote:
Of equal interest (and chagrin) is that the new Lost Omen Campaign line is quarterly—for now. But the Companion line and Campaign Setting line were once bi-monthly. Will Paizo commit to that quarterly schedule?
There are currently four books scheduled in the Lost Omens line in 2020. It's too early to say anything for sure for 2021, but I don't expect that pace to change.

Thank you as well, Mr. Wertz, for taking time to respond. I appreciate that comment of commitment to the quarterly schedule model of sales for the foreseeable future.

Please understand that my perspective comes from a place of well-meaning concern. I want Paizo to succeed. And I am seriously impressed with what Jason, Michael, and the others have developed with Pathfinder Second Edition. I’d like to see Paizo continue in it’s success for ANOTHER decade or more!

Unlike WotC, Pathfinder can’t hide behind the money of a big parent company, taking a lose in one line such as the D&D brand while raking in the profits from Magic: the Gathering. It’s David to their Goliath... and I always root for the underdog. Standing up to Goliath in this case means listening to your customer base, in much the same as I am to my player base. And the core of my player base are Pathfinder Society Players who are rightfully concerned about the pdf pricing of this new line. This is something that only Paizo can address and an issue that can not be addressed if no one expresses that concern.

I am reminded of one of the pieces of advice I give my children: If you never ask, the answer is always “No.”

Paizo Employee Customer Service & Community Manager

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In the past, we had set the rulebook line's PDFs at $9.99. Prior to the second edition release, the executives and some of the management staff sat down to discuss how we would handle the pricing structure for digital content, as that $9.99 price was set a decade ago and we felt second edition would be a good time to revisit that choice.

    What I recall from that meeting was that there were a couple major objectives for considering a price change which included:
  • One, we wanted to make sure the rulebooks did not go so high as to be a significant barrier for entry, particularly because organized play folks are required to have the books for their characters.
  • Two, we recognize that as a larger company in the RPG industry, how we price our digital content can have an effect on how the community perceives pricing for digital products from other publishers. While Paizo could afford to set the corebook line lower, there are other publishers that cannot. Setting the corebook line at $9.99 artificially drives down the market price consumers are willing to pay for other RPGs. That in turn can negatively impacts how much other publishers can afford to compensate the artists, authors, layout, editors, etc, that work on their products, particularly when they only have digital versions they can offer. Part of the reason we decided to increase the price was to help push for a RPG market where publishers are able to offer their products at a price that helps support a sustainable RPG industry.
  • Three, we also consider how the pricing of our digital content will affect local gaming stores. They are not able to sell the PDFs for our books, and by raising the corebook pricing to $14.99 (and maintaining our usual pricing for other PDFs), we help ensure that customers see purchasing from their local game store as a viable option, which in turn, supports a sustainable RPG industry.

We felt like changing the pricing of the corebook line's PDFs to $14.99, was a good balance for the goals we had.

As far as Lost Omens World Guide pricing, I don't recall personally being involved with discussing this product's pricing. However, my take on it is that the World Guide line is a bit of a mash up between player companions and campaign settings, both of which historically were a percentage off the MSRP, (excluding the Inner Sea World Guide), so the pricing on the Lost Omen's World Guide makes sense to me.

Ultimately, each person looking at the books we publish and offer for retail, either physical or digital, will need to determine if they feel the value is worth the content. But one person making the determination that the cost/benefits aren't worth it to them, does not equate that we are trying to gouge customers. As I mentioned in the other thread, staff are frequently reading and often responding to questions and threads, and starting with those kinds of accusations doesn't really facilitate meaningful discussion on our forums.

Liberty's Edge

Sara Marie wrote:

In the past, we had set the rulebook line's PDFs at $9.99. Prior to the second edition release, the executives and some of the management staff sat down to discuss how we would handle the pricing structure for digital content, as that $9.99 price was set a decade ago and we felt second edition would be a good time to revisit that choice.

    What I recall from that meeting was that there were a couple major objectives for considering a price change which included:
  • One, we wanted to make sure the rulebooks did not go so high as to be a significant barrier for entry, particularly because organized play folks are required to have the books for their characters.
  • Two, we recognize that as a larger company in the RPG industry, how we price our digital content can have an effect on how the community perceives pricing for digital products from other publishers. While Paizo could afford to set the corebook line lower, there are other publishers that cannot. Setting the corebook line at $9.99 artificially drives down the market price consumers are willing to pay for other RPGs. That in turn can negatively impacts how much other publishers can afford to compensate the artists, authors, layout, editors, etc, that work on their products, particularly when they only have digital versions they can offer. Part of the reason we decided to increase the price was to help push for a RPG market where publishers are able to offer their products at a price that helps support a sustainable RPG industry.
  • Three, we also consider how the pricing of our digital content will affect local gaming stores. They are not able to sell the PDFs for our books, and by raising the corebook pricing to $14.99 (and maintaining our usual pricing for other PDFs), we help ensure that customers see purchasing from their local game store as a viable option, which in turn, supports a sustainable RPG industry.

We felt like changing the pricing of the corebook line's PDFs to $14.99, was a good balance for...

Thank you for your response, Sara Marie.I appreciate the insight.

I can certainly see how Paizo's pricing can have an impact on the industry as a whole. Certainly, WotC's pricing for similar products influences Paizo's decisions as well. This is understandable. Of the three points made, I can accept your answers on all but one and that is the first one.

Right now, Pathfinder Second Edition is still new. Initially, players and GMs alike will be filled with excitement for the products as they release. without consideration for cost to content ratio. As the line matures, there will be far more scrutiny toward products and their perceived value. Quite simply put, there will be product to make comparisons with, an issue that doesn't exist in a void. As you pointed out, Pathfinder Society requires the ownership of those products for any mechanic they want to apply to their characters. With the dismantling of purchasing options (in this case, the Companion and Campaign Setting line) in favor of one option (the Lost Omens Campaign Setting line), players aren't allowed any option at all... except either to purchase what is offered or not. I've already made clear how my constituents feel about the present pdf pricing in regards to Pathfinder Society.In fact, one of them responded above with what he felt would have been a fair and acceptable pricing, since they are required for play. Even more so for our many volunteers who are not granted access to these products a easily as long-term volunteers such as myself; many Venture Lieutenants and Venture Agents feel compelled to purchase products to stay "up to date." While the requirement puts the onus of providing proof of game mechanics onto the player, a large majority of the VOs like to understand these in advance of being blind-sided with the latest feat, equipment or archetype at their table. Perhaps even more so than your average casual player, these VOs are the target audience for those pdfs.

Admittedly, this pricing decision impacts my region directly; I've not gathered enough information from other regions to discover if I stand alone. Perhaps a poll taken by other volunteers will provide the necessary data to see if this impact is more wide spread. I can only speak for me and mine. All I can ask at this time is for Paizo to take this information given and reconsider for future releases.

Thank all of you (Vic Wertz, Michael Sayre, and Sara Marie) for taking time to participate in this discussion. I hope this polite conversation continues.

Liberty's Edge

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As an aside, I just visited my local gaming store and did some comparisons of other products from industry competitors.

Troll Lords Games
The Book of Familiars - $29.99 - 208 pages - Cost? $.14 per page
Player’s Handbook - $29.99 142 pages - Cost? $.21 per page
Monsters and Treasures - $19.99 - 128 pages - Cost? $.16 per page

From WotC:
Ghosts of Saltmarsh - $39.99 - 256 pages - Cost? $.16 per page
Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes - $39.99 - 256 pages - Cost? $.16 per page

The Lost Omen’s World Guide falls in comparison more with the books that WotC produces than those of other companies, having full color art and hardcover print runs. And yes, I’ve stated previously that Hasbro has the money to take a lose on the D&D brand while practically printing money with the cardboard crack that is Magic: the Gathering. But nether of them are coming close to the $.25 per page that Paizo is asking for each entry in the Lost Omens line.

If the goal is to stay within reasonable reach of their competitors, then an adjusted price point would better reflect that.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Considering pricing on a per-page basis comes with an inherent flaw: the cost of printing a book does not scale linearly with page count. The printer's material costs for paper and ink may be roughly linear, but press setup time and other factors are not. And some of these non-linear factors scale based on page count of the product, while others scale based on the number of copies printed, and others might even be a flat per-SKU cost, so there's not even a consistent curve you can apply to it. That said, in general, the per-page price is going to be higher for lower page counts.

That's why our recent release prices look like this:

• Fall of Plaguestone (64-page softcover): $22.99 ($.36/pp)
• Age of Ashes #1 (96-page softcover): $24.99 ($.26/pp)
• Lost Omens World Guide (136-page hardcover with 8-panel poster map): $36.99 ($.26/pp, but note that I'm counting the map as if it's merely another 8 pages, even though it costs significantly more than just adding 8 more pages would)
• Bestiary (360-page hardcover): $49.99 ($.14/pp)
• Core Rulebook (640-page hardcover): $59.99 ($.09/pp)

(The significant per-page drop in the last two comes somewhat from page count, but mostly from volume.)

So you can see that, in general, per-page pricing goes down as page count goes up. Therefore, if you want to compare our pricing to Wizards' pricing, you really need to compare 256-page books to 256-page books.

I believe the last 256-pager we had was Planar Adventures last June, priced at $44.99, or $.18/pp—only $.02 more than the two Wizards books. And I'm pretty sure our volume on that book was a fair bit lower than Wizards' volume on the two books you named; if we'd printed it in the volume I believe they have, I think we'd most likely have priced it exactly the same as them, at $39.99.


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Arnim Thayer wrote:
...many Venture Lieutenants and Venture Agents feel compelled to purchase products to stay "up to date." While the requirement puts the onus of providing proof of game mechanics onto the player, a large majority of the VOs like to understand these in advance of being blind-sided with the latest feat, equipment or archetype at their table. Perhaps even more so than your average casual player, these VOs are the target audience for those pdfs.

Repeating my confession of PFS ignorance above, I don’t understand this bit.

If you felt compelled to buy these to “keep up” hasn’t your cost/year gone down? The Lost Omens subscription is going to work out cheaper than the Player Companion subscription was, isn’t it? (And definitely cheaper for those who were getting both the player companions and campaign setting books).

I can see why players who only bought one or two companions over the course of a few years might feel like the price has gone up, but if you’re a “get everything” person, my calculation has been that the overall cost of collecting is now less.

Liberty's Edge

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Steve Geddes wrote:
Arnim Thayer wrote:
...many Venture Lieutenants and Venture Agents feel compelled to purchase products to stay "up to date." While the requirement puts the onus of providing proof of game mechanics onto the player, a large majority of the VOs like to understand these in advance of being blind-sided with the latest feat, equipment or archetype at their table. Perhaps even more so than your average casual player, these VOs are the target audience for those pdfs.

Repeating my confession of PFS ignorance above, I don’t understand this bit.

If you felt compelled to buy these to “keep up” hasn’t your cost/year gone down? The Lost Omens subscription is going to work out cheaper than the Player Companion subscription was, isn’t it? (And definitely cheaper for those who were getting both the player companions and campaign setting books).

I can see why players who only bought one or two companions over the course of a few years might feel like the price has gone up, but if you’re a “get everything” person, my calculation has been that the overall cost of collecting is now less.

In the past, GMs and VOs could keep up with the amount of content through two methods: 1) cherrypicking, or 2) the extremely affordable nature of the pdfs. In the first, it came down to content. If you never run a scenario in Kaer Maga, there is little need to purchase the Campaign Setting book detailing it. And on the rare chance you do, you can either purchase that sourcebook (in either physical or digital form) or do a web search and see whaat information you find. The latter might produce a workable knowledge of the region, but purchasing the sourcebook allows the GM in inject a little more detail, scoured from the pages of Paizo’s impressive writing. In the second method, a GM/VO can have an much more portable copy of the exact source material at their finger tips, trading in pounds of pages for a far more accessible digital format. When it came to soft-bound books, sometimes having that physical copy made sense. I mean, how often is Kaer Maga going to come up? And besides, it supports Paizo. With the hardcovers however, portability is king. Looking to my right, I have over 25 tomes of Pathfinder rules; it would be ridiculous to think I would haul all of those to a convention or game day, just to insure I have every possible source for every possible mechanic that might show up at my table. Yes, the burden of that is on the players to present—far too often, they are relying on HeroLab or Archives of Nethys, places where shorthand for those mechanics leave a lot to be interpreted by the reader.

Honestly, the cost of the hardcovers isn’t the big issue to my constituents: It’s the cost of the pdfs. And since the cost of the pdfs is directly derived from the print cost, it becomes an issue only because of that impact. Vic Wertz is right to point out that printing costs and volume have impact on deciding that final price as well. While Paizo has a educated guest as to their target sales projections and potential audience, every print run is a risk. My players have let me know they aren’t sure this new price model is for them. I’m only presenting the perspective brought to me because I don’t want Paizo to fail.

Again, I appreciate everyone who has been civil in this conversation, asking questions of viewpoints they don’t understand without passing judgement first. I also appreciate the responses from Mr. Wertz who has takenthe time to address this issue within this thread.. I hope that he understands that we both want the best for Paizo: continued success!


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I'm not an economics major, but my society players were upset that they couldn't use any of the character options from the LOWG because none of them could justify the cost of the PDF.

Scarab Sages

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The Lost Omens World Guide is only 136 pages.
Amazon.ca has the print copy book listed at $48.80....

Paizo will bury itself with their actions, and honestly let them. It is their choice for overpricing product, with little in it. I have yet to meet one person, that has looked inside the book, and gone "OMG that's amazing for that price!". Actually the complete opposite, including the store owners and managers.
Having the rules available online for free, is another reason NOT to purchase this. By your example, if there are only 25 pages of rules, why for any reason would I spend $25 on the pdf? Or $40+ for a print copy? For what, fluff and world building, which if you check that within the pages, is sparse, with more art included.
Now people have pushed back, stating that art is just as equal to any written content. Fine by me, we will see in time just how much money Paizo is making from this type of business plan, and how soon they drop the amount they are selling books of this size. Paizo only held the #1 spot over D&D for a short number of years, currently they are ranked #5 in overall sales. The next quarter, and ones after that, will tell the tale. (Star Wars is outselling it, as is Vampire!)

Scarab Sages

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Arnim Thayer wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Arnim Thayer wrote:
...many Venture Lieutenants and Venture Agents feel compelled to purchase products to stay "up to date." While the requirement puts the onus of providing proof of game mechanics onto the player, a large majority of the VOs like to understand these in advance of being blind-sided with the latest feat, equipment or archetype at their table. Perhaps even more so than your average casual player, these VOs are the target audience for those pdfs.

Repeating my confession of PFS ignorance above, I don’t understand this bit.

If you felt compelled to buy these to “keep up” hasn’t your cost/year gone down? The Lost Omens subscription is going to work out cheaper than the Player Companion subscription was, isn’t it? (And definitely cheaper for those who were getting both the player companions and campaign setting books).

I can see why players who only bought one or two companions over the course of a few years might feel like the price has gone up, but if you’re a “get everything” person, my calculation has been that the overall cost of collecting is now less.

In the past, GMs and VOs could keep up with the amount of content through two methods: 1) cherrypicking, or 2) the extremely affordable nature of the pdfs. In the first, it came down to content. If you never run a scenario in Kaer Maga, there is little need to purchase the Campaign Setting book detailing it. And on the rare chance you do, you can either purchase that sourcebook (in either physical or digital form) or do a web search and see whaat information you find. The latter might produce a workable knowledge of the region, but purchasing the sourcebook allows the GM in inject a little more detail, scoured from the pages of Paizo’s impressive writing. In the second method, a GM/VO can have an much more portable copy of the exact source material at their finger tips, trading in pounds of pages for a far more accessible digital format. When it came to soft-bound books, sometimes having that...

My group learned LONG ago, buying the print copies was utterly pointless. The amount of info inside, if it isn't a core book, is never worth the price. The PDFs allow players to just cherry pick anything needed, for a fraction of the price. And obviously carrying around brick after brick of hardcover isn't easy either.


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Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Hunters Moon wrote:

The Lost Omens World Guide is only 136 pages.

Amazon.ca has the print copy book listed at $48.80....

Paizo will bury itself with their actions, and honestly let them. It is their choice for overpricing product, with little in it. I have yet to meet one person, that has looked inside the book, and gone "OMG that's amazing for that price!". Actually the complete opposite, including the store owners and managers.
Having the rules available online for free, is another reason NOT to purchase this. By your example, if there are only 25 pages of rules, why for any reason would I spend $25 on the pdf? Or $40+ for a print copy? For what, fluff and world building, which if you check that within the pages, is sparse, with more art included.
Now people have pushed back, stating that art is just as equal to any written content. Fine by me, we will see in time just how much money Paizo is making from this type of business plan, and how soon they drop the amount they are selling books of this size. Paizo only held the #1 spot over D&D for a short number of years, currently they are ranked #5 in overall sales. The next quarter, and ones after that, will tell the tale. (Star Wars is outselling it, as is Vampire!)

The whole first print run of the World Guide has already sold out.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Hunters Moon wrote:
My group learned LONG ago, buying the print copies was utterly pointless. The amount of info inside, if it isn't a core book, is never worth the price. The PDFs allow players to just cherry pick anything needed, for a fraction of the price. And obviously carrying around brick after brick of hardcover isn't easy either.

It absolutely has a point. You're players are welcome to draw incorrect conclusions of course.

Scarab Sages

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The whole first print run of the World Guide has already sold out.

Same misconception with the comic industry.

Moving product to a store, versus it actually selling to customers.

Scarab Sages

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TriOmegaZero wrote:
Hunters Moon wrote:
My group learned LONG ago, buying the print copies was utterly pointless. The amount of info inside, if it isn't a core book, is never worth the price. The PDFs allow players to just cherry pick anything needed, for a fraction of the price. And obviously carrying around brick after brick of hardcover isn't easy either.
It absolutely has a point. You're players are welcome to draw incorrect conclusions of course.

Sorry if you're the thought police, and believe my players are drawing incorrect conclusions.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Hunters Moon wrote:

The Lost Omens World Guide is only 136 pages.

Amazon.ca has the print copy book listed at $48.80....

Paizo will bury itself with their actions, and honestly let them. It is their choice for overpricing product, with little in it. I have yet to meet one person, that has looked inside the book, and gone "OMG that's amazing for that price!". Actually the complete opposite, including the store owners and managers.
Having the rules available online for free, is another reason NOT to purchase this. By your example, if there are only 25 pages of rules, why for any reason would I spend $25 on the pdf? Or $40+ for a print copy? For what, fluff and world building, which if you check that within the pages, is sparse, with more art included.
Now people have pushed back, stating that art is just as equal to any written content. Fine by me, we will see in time just how much money Paizo is making from this type of business plan, and how soon they drop the amount they are selling books of this size. Paizo only held the #1 spot over D&D for a short number of years, currently they are ranked #5 in overall sales. The next quarter, and ones after that, will tell the tale. (Star Wars is outselling it, as is Vampire!)

Hi *waves* I have gone "OMG that's amazing for that price!" Way to put words in everyone's mouth. The print run selling out is whats affecting Amazon's pricing, but that's too simple a reason for it to be above what Paizo was charging, isn't it? Nevermind that Amazon almost ALWAYS undercuts the Paizo price.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

You're allowed to be wrong.


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Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Hunters Moon wrote:
Moving product to a store, versus it actually selling to customers.

Amazon.com in the US is out of stock and didn't fulfill all their preorders. Amazon.ca is out, which is why third party sellers like Book Depository CA are the only ones selling it and why it's priced at cover price (given the current exchange rate) instead of at a discount as Amazon usually does when they have their own copies. Paizo.com is out and waiting for a new printing. Book Depository in the US is out.

I'm sure there are still some scattered around in LGSs, but online stores don't have any to sell. Customers are trying to buy it and can't.

Scarab Sages

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I didn't put any words in anyone's mouth, again read what I wrote please. "I have yet to meet anyone..." meaning anyone I have interacted with up to this point. That's just relating experience, nothing more.
And again, the print run selling out, like I stated before with the comic book industry, is a falsehood. Selling product to a brick and mortar store, doesn't mean the product moves to customers. It means the STORE has the product. If a store doesn't see the product move past that, they won't reorder the same amount again. Which will mean Paizo doesn't make as much money. Amazon undercuts Paizo....that's considered undercutting?

Scarab Sages

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TriOmegaZero wrote:
You're allowed to be wrong.

And you're insulting and rude. Which speaks volumes. You want to attack someone personally, then you have zero argument.

Scarab Sages

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Two of the largest, local B&M stores have 10+ here in stock each. Selling for $36.95 as well. Also it is available in multiple copies at various other stores, around 5 copies at each store.
And that's a major metropolitan city. So no idea what customers you're looking at that are having issues, it's sitting on shelves here untouched, and uncracked.


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

I suggest you not buy books you think are too expensive. (I think they’re too cheap).

Scarab Sages

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Steve Geddes wrote:
I suggest you not buy books you think are too expensive. (I think they’re too cheap).

Oh none of us will buy anything like this for sure. It's a tell tale way to push us to 5E easily, no matter how better we think the 2E system is. Or other systems to try out. Though I do have to reiterate, this belief is with the non-core books. I think Paizo could raise their core book PDF prices to $19.99, and should do so. I don't see them losing any revenue from it, as most gamers are used to that price point from many other games.


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Hunters Moon wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
I suggest you not buy books you think are too expensive. (I think they’re too cheap).
Oh none of us will buy anything like this for sure. It's a tell tale way to push us to 5E easily, no matter how better we think the 2E system is. Or other systems to try out. Though I do have to reiterate, this belief is with the non-core books. I think Paizo could raise their core book PDF prices to $19.99, and should do so. I don't see them losing any revenue from it, as most gamers are used to that price point from many other games.

I’m glad you’ve got such a wide variety of games to choose from. It’s certainly a much better time to be a gamer nowadays than it used to be.

Grand Lodge

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Hunters Moon wrote:
TriOmegaZero wrote:
You're allowed to be wrong.
And you're insulting and rude.

It must be a mirror for you.

Edit: I must admit that it is telling that you consider being told you're wrong a personal attack.

Silver Crusade

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Hunters Moon wrote:

Two of the largest, local B&M stores have 10+ here in stock each. Selling for $36.95 as well. Also it is available in multiple copies at various other stores, around 5 copies at each store.

And that's a major metropolitan city. So no idea what customers you're looking at that are having issues, it's sitting on shelves here untouched, and uncracked.

How often are you and the Managers of said store talking disdainfully of it where others can hear though?

Silver Crusade

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Hunters Moon wrote:

I didn't put any words in anyone's mouth, again read what I wrote please. "I have yet to meet anyone..." meaning anyone I have interacted with up to this point. That's just relating experience, nothing more.

And again, the print run selling out, like I stated before with the comic book industry, is a falsehood. Selling product to a brick and mortar store, doesn't mean the product moves to customers. It means the STORE has the product. If a store doesn't see the product move past that, they won't reorder the same amount again. Which will mean Paizo doesn't make as much money. Amazon undercuts Paizo....that's considered undercutting?

And again, people are trying to buy it online and not able to because Amazon is out of stock. Paizo is out of stock. Other retailers that offer online purchase, out of stock. Brick and mortar stores don't sell through as fast in general, but it has been a run away success despite your anecdotal evidence.


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Every store in our area (8 stores) sold out the first day.

Scarab Sages

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I’m glad you’ve got such a wide variety of games to choose from. It’s certainly a much better time to be a gamer nowadays than it used to be.

I feel that we are in a gaming renaissance thankfully, I hope that it never ends. There are a plethora of fantasy RPGs available, and good ones at that. It's nice to have that flexibility thankfully.

Grand Lodge

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Hunters Moon wrote:
Your responses are telling, to your lack of an argument. You're correct, because I'm not here attacking anyone, therefore why would I direct anything at an individual?

Neither am I.

Scarab Sages

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TriOmegaZero wrote:
Hunters Moon wrote:
TriOmegaZero wrote:
You're allowed to be wrong.
And you're insulting and rude.

It must be a mirror for you.

Edit: I must admit that it is telling that you consider being told you're wrong a personal attack.

Your responses are telling, to your lack of an argument. You're correct, because I'm not here attacking anyone, therefore why would I direct anything at an individual? I am debating the subject matter, which is the pricing of PDFs. But nice try, thanks for showing your true colors rather easily.

Scarab Sages

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Rysky wrote:
Hunters Moon wrote:

Two of the largest, local B&M stores have 10+ here in stock each. Selling for $36.95 as well. Also it is available in multiple copies at various other stores, around 5 copies at each store.

And that's a major metropolitan city. So no idea what customers you're looking at that are having issues, it's sitting on shelves here untouched, and uncracked.
How often are you and the Managers of said store talking disdainfully of it where others can hear though?

When I was in the outlying city B&M store, we discussed it in front of anyone there. In terms of locally, people have been around, and haven't. Facts are facts, if the book is what it is, us discussing it or not, won't change that.

Scarab Sages

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And again, people are trying to buy it online and not able to because Amazon is out of stock. Paizo is out of stock. Other retailers that offer online purchase, out of stock. Brick and mortar stores don't sell through as fast in general, but it has been a run away success despite your anecdotal evidence.

Falsehood, B&M stores here sell through their RPG stocks often enough quite quickly. Depends on the product, the demand for it, and how much stock came in.

As for anecdotal, completely fair, but that's the difference: I have it right in front of me. I could post pictures of the stock on walls, and in the back storage, etc.
But hey, that doesn't alter the PDF price either. Which is part of this argument, and was brought to larger light above by Arnim Thayer. There are multiple layers to this, and he was correct. The hardcovers mean little in comparison to electronic, such is the way things are going.

Silver Crusade

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Hunters Moon wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Hunters Moon wrote:

Two of the largest, local B&M stores have 10+ here in stock each. Selling for $36.95 as well. Also it is available in multiple copies at various other stores, around 5 copies at each store.

And that's a major metropolitan city. So no idea what customers you're looking at that are having issues, it's sitting on shelves here untouched, and uncracked.
How often are you and the Managers of said store talking disdainfully of it where others can hear though?
When I was in the outlying city B&M store, we discussed it in front of anyone there. In terms of locally, people have been around, and haven't. Facts are facts, if the book is what it is, us discussing it or not, won't change that.

Your opinion is not a fact.

You not liking the art or how much is in there and thinking the book is lesser for it is an opinion, not a fact.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Hunters Moon wrote:
Quote:
And again, people are trying to buy it online and not able to because Amazon is out of stock. Paizo is out of stock. Other retailers that offer online purchase, out of stock. Brick and mortar stores don't sell through as fast in general, but it has been a run away success despite your anecdotal evidence.

Falsehood, B&M stores here sell through their RPG stocks often enough quite quickly. Depends on the product, the demand for it, and how much stock came in.

As for anecdotal, completely fair, but that's the difference: I have it right in front of me. I could post pictures of the stock on walls, and in the back storage, etc.
But hey, that doesn't alter the PDF price either. Which is part of this argument, and was brought to larger light above by Arnim Thayer. There are multiple layers to this, and he was correct. The hardcovers mean little in comparison to electronic, such is the way things are going.

And other people could post pictures of empty shelves.

You're using the fact that it's not selling in a place where frequent patrons and employees bad mouth it as confirmation bias.

Scarab Sages

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When I was in the outlying city B&M store, we discussed it in front of anyone there. In terms of locally, people have been around, and haven't. Facts are facts, if the book is what it is, us discussing it or not, won't change that.

Your opinion is not a fact.

You not liking the art or how much is in there and thinking the book is lesser for it is an opinion, not a fact.

You are correct, the facts are the hardcover isn't selling around here at all in the local gaming stores. Nor anywhere else in any outlying B&M store. There is stock on the store sitting there untouched.

The facts in terms of pricing, is brought about comparing it to other PDFs, from other companies. On top of that, there is the above argument that another member brought forward with PFS.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Quote:
When I was in the outlying city B&M store, we discussed it in front of anyone there. In terms of locally, people have been around, and haven't. Facts are facts, if the book is what it is, us discussing it or not, won't change that.

Your opinion is not a fact.

You not liking the art or how much is in there and thinking the book is lesser for it is an opinion, not a fact.

Quote:

You are correct, the facts are the hardcover isn't selling around here at all in the local gaming stores. Nor anywhere else in any outlying B&M store. There is stock on the store sitting there untouched.
The facts in terms of pricing, is brought about comparing it to other PDFs, from other companies. On top of that, there is the above argument that another member brought forward with PFS.

That's the thing though, it is selling elsewhere.

Scarab Sages

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And other people could post pictures of empty shelves.

You're using the fact that it's not selling in a place where frequent patrons and employees bad mouth it as confirmation bias.

Er that really doesn't show that it isn't selling here, you do realize that, right?

Actually no, there is no confirmation bias. Why? Because the store has still bought the product, and it's on the shelf. If there was bias, they wouldn't even bother. Nice try though. I'm sorry you can't accept that people pick up the book, and have an opinion on it that doesn't jive with yours.

Scarab Sages

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That's the thing though, it is selling elsewhere.

Apparently it isn't here, at all.

Funny that though....

Grand Lodge

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Hunters Moon wrote:

That's the thing though, it is selling elsewhere.

Apparently it isn't here, at all.
Funny that though....

If your attitude is prevalent in your area, hardly surprising.


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Hunters Moon wrote:
Actually no, there is no confirmation bias. Why? Because the store has still bought the product, and it's on the shelf. If there was bias, they wouldn't even bother. Nice try though. I'm sorry you can't accept that people pick up the book, and have an opinion on it that doesn't jive with yours.

If you're interested, that isn't what confirmation bias means.

Confirmation bias is the tendency to overemphasise evidence which supports your pre-existing belief and to discount the evidence which contradicts it. In this case, your view is that the price of the PDFs (or the hardcovers - you seem to alternate sometimes between which pricing structure you're criticising) will result in the books not being sold.

You are placing a large weight on the evidence of people you speak to face to face who agree with you and the sight of lots of copies of books on the stores near you.

You are discounting the evidence that Paizo sold out extraordinarily rapidly (too rapidly, in fact - the fact they're already reprinting means they either set the price too low or didn't print enough).

You're discounting the fact that other online retailers are out of stock (including Amazon - one of the main distribution channels of RPGs these days).

You're also discounting all the people here who are telling you we don't find them too expensive.

The fact is the book is too expensive for some, too cheap for others and just right for some people. There is no objective "fact" as to what a book should cost from an individual consumer's perspective - everyone makes their own value judgements and behaves accordingly. You're correct that the price is too high for you to make the purchase. I'm correct that it's too low for me and I wish they had charged me more.

There is a "sweet spot" from the publisher's perspective, but the evidence absolutely contradicts your point there - they sold out quicker than they wanted too. That indicates potential for a price increase, not that the book was over priced.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Hunters Moon wrote:
Quote:

And other people could post pictures of empty shelves.

You're using the fact that it's not selling in a place where frequent patrons and employees bad mouth it as confirmation bias.

Er that really doesn't show that it isn't selling here, you do realize that, right?
It certainly can't be helping it any.
Quote:
Actually no, there is no confirmation bias. Why? Because the store has still bought the product, and it's on the shelf. If there was bias, they wouldn't even bother. Nice try though. I'm sorry you can't accept that people pick up the book, and have an opinion on it that doesn't jive with yours.

Confirmation bias

You're using the fact that it's not selling in your store to make the unfounded claim that isn't selling elsewhere/isn't selling well.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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You're welcome to criticize us, but please stop deleting the opening quote tags from the posts you're quoting—it makes it really hard to tell which parts of your post are your words, and which are other people's.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Hunters Moon wrote:
Joana wrote:
The whole first print run of the World Guide has already sold out.

Same misconception with the comic industry.

Moving product to a store, versus it actually selling to customers.

The misconception is yours—in publishing (and many other industries) "sold out" means "the publisher has sold out." It does not mean "there are no copies for sale anywhere," and it cannot mean that, as that sort of thing can't reasonably be tracked. It means that distribution cannot reorder that product unless and until it is reprinted. The fact that there are some copies on a shelf in Canada, or listings on eBay, or third-party sellers on Amazon, doesn't change that.

It also doesn't change the fact that there's latent demand for those books—maybe not where you are, but in many other places. And it's going to take a few months before the reprint is available, so it's reasonable to assume that demand will increase before supply is available to meet it.

So you and your store can view their unsold copies as a problem. But many retailers see having inventory of in-demand, sold-out products as an opportunity. Do they sell on eBay or Amazon?

Liberty's Edge

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Wow! I leave this thread for a few days and it explodes!

I'm not going to argue that the print price of this book is too high; I concede that I do not know enough about the overall cost of producing a book such as this to make that judgment call. As others have pointed out, the cost for the pdf of this book is set by a (rough) consistent percentage of the actual cost of a physical copy. I've given other industry comparisons, and admit unarguably that Paizo cannot compete in same price range with 5E Dungeons & Dragons, simply because Hasbro can afford to take the hit in much that same way that Walmart does: they can spread the lose to other departments if necessary. Paizo is a much smaller company. They are the #2 tabletop RPG publishing company in the world presently, but the gap between them and the #1 RPG publisher is fairly huge... and they have years of branding to help them. In short, I'm not going to tip my lance at this particular windmill anymore.

Yes, in the publishing industry the terms "sold out" can consider a number of factors. The largest one that creates a false impression of popularity/scarcity is "purposely underprinting." The comics industry does this a lot, especially after the devastating effect of "overprinting" in the 90's.I have enough faith in Paizo however to believe they wouldn't resort to such a tactic. Because of this, I give congratulations to you on selling out on this newest of tomes! You have earned it!

I do implore Paizo to take a look at the effect this could have on the organized play community, a community that is required to own the appropriate source material to use options provided. I also ask that they stay committed to their announced printing schedule of "one per quarter" to help belay the lose of the easily affordable Companion line. As I've said before, I don't know what the solution is. I've just reported the problem, that perceived problem being that the pdf price seems comparatively too high to my local/regional player base. It is up to Paizo to find that balance that pleases their digital customers and their own financial needs.

Of note: I noticed that the 5E D&D Starter box comes with a unique coupon code that gives a discount on buying the digital Player's Handbook. Could something like this be considered, a discount given for purchasing a physical copy? Just a thought.

Liberty's Edge

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Arnim,
You appear to be falling into the same confirmation bias trap as Hunter's Moon, albeit more politely.
I'm not going to argue that you and your circle of gamers are wrong, because obviously you know your situation better than I could, but if Paizo and Amazon have both sold out, it indicates that quite a lot of people are buying the book. I have no idea how many are in the Pathfinder Society, but it would seem strange if a significant proportion are not.
As sales exceeded Paizo's estimations, and I'd hope and assume that after so many years in the RPG business, especially with over a decade of selling their own product, that they'd have a pretty good method for ballparking order runs. This exceeded them, probably substantially given the print run didn't even last a month. So if Pathfinder Society people aren't buying the book, who is?
I'm not denying the points you raise are valid, but they may not be as significant elsewhere as you are finding.


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By the way, Amazon are now suddenly shipping again, so it could well be that they didnt sell out but rather underordered (or just had their usual, run-of-the mill inventory screwups).

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