On PDF pricing


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Steve Geddes wrote:
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).

Not in Canada.

At least for my groups, we're only very slowly dabbling in PF2, so we can wait months for this book. The mechanical content isn't critical to us to have right away, and the setting material is similarly not urgent. For others, it's a shame they can't have it right away.


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Anguish wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
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).

Not in Canada.

At least for my groups, we're only very slowly dabbling in PF2, so we can wait months for this book. The mechanical content isn't critical to us to have right away, and the setting material is similarly not urgent. For others, it's a shame they can't have it right away.

I probably didn’t phrase that very well.

They may not have resumed shipping yet, but my point was that Amazon are not always great at knowing what’s going on. There has been a lot of discussion in this thread about Amazon selling out - that may not have been accurate (although as Vic mentioned above, it’s not a terribly significant datapoint anyhow). Amazon often don’t seem to know when they’re going to ship rpg books until the day of departure.

My main reason for posting was in case anyone stumbles across this thread and thinks Amazon is destined to be later than Paizo (it may not be, as it turns out - there might be some copies still working their way through amazons systems).


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Anguish wrote:
For others, it's a shame they can't have it right away.

Must be a bummer for Paizo as well. Seems to me this is a key book to have available for new recruits. They must be disappointed to have sold out (in the sense that I bet they agonised over how many to print and could have comfortably printed many more).

Scarab Sages

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Vic Wertz wrote:
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?

Stores, not store. Plural. Don't try to diminish things thanks, it doesn't show well on your argument.

As for my misconception, fine by me, as I stated, it is much like the comic book industry. Product sold to a store, isn't product sold to a consumer. When it's sitting on a shelf gathering dust, good luck they'll continue ordering the same amount. Who do you think then is going to lose money?
I'm glad that it sold out on Amazon, great sign. Nothing better than having the big companies doing it for you.
BUT I also love that you said there are "some" copies on "a" shelf. Next time try to read what I wrote, I was rather clear. There are MANY copies, on MANY shelves in the B&M stores, not only in ONE city, but many.

Scarab Sages

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Arnim Thayer wrote:

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...

Don't bother, they aren't listening. They are so far into the "We are doing amazing we sold out!", they couldn't care about the PDF cost, nor PFS, nor anything else period. Which is pretty telling where they are at in terms of caring about their customers anymore.

Like I said before, come back next year, let's track the quarterly sales. And we will see if Paizo can get out of 5th place, and beat Vampire and Star Wars...


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That's not true, Paizo has shown again and again that they're willing to listen to well spoken dissent, no need to insult them.

Grand Lodge

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Yeah, if HM had come in saying "Hey, I think this price point is too high, here's why" rather than "Paizo is gouging customers with low content high prices!" I would have just nodded and moved on.

Silver Crusade

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Hunters Moon wrote:
Like I said before, come back next year, let's track the quarterly sales. And we will see if Paizo can get out of 5th place, and beat Vampire and Star Wars...

If Pathfinder/Starfinder is selling well why do they need to beat Vampire or Star Wars?

Scarab Sages

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TriOmegaZero wrote:
Yeah, if HM had come in saying "Hey, I think this price point is too high, here's why" rather than "Paizo is gouging customers with low content high prices!" I would have just nodded and moved on.

Funny how the same statement, said in two different ways, alters the facts of it. I don't sugar coat things, I say it like it is, sorry mate.

Scarab Sages

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captain yesterday wrote:
That's not true, Paizo has shown again and again that they're willing to listen to well spoken dissent, no need to insult them.

Their pricing insults me honestly, in what they expect to siphon from customers, with so little content inside. They get what they give, pretty simple.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

The fact is, you think the price is too high. Your opinion is that Paizo is gouging customers. That supposes malice on the part of Paizo, which I find distasteful given your complete lack of personal knowledge of the people involved. Perhaps I am mistaken and you've attended PaizoCon or GenCon and met with them, but I doubt it.

Scarab Sages

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Rysky wrote:
Hunters Moon wrote:
Like I said before, come back next year, let's track the quarterly sales. And we will see if Paizo can get out of 5th place, and beat Vampire and Star Wars...
If Pathfinder/Starfinder is selling well why do they need to beat Vampire or Star Wars?

Pathfinder has slipped to 5th place, behind Star Wars and Vampire. Starfinder holds 2nd, with 5E being the top dog (as expected at this stage).

PF1E held number one for a good number of years (I think it was two consecutively?), but the moment 5E came out, they started to slip faster and faster behind.
That's why I was stated earlier, we will wait and see the numbers in the coming months. If players don't care for this pricing, then they'll start rising. If they do, then that's a tell tale sign they were gouging, and players said no way, and shuffled off.
It's always laughable when I hear a company shout "We sold out!" so early on. Being around for decades in gaming, trust me, a new edition always sparks some interest. Let's see if it has any real legs though in the long run.

Scarab Sages

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TriOmegaZero wrote:
The fact is, you think the price is too high. Your opinion is that Paizo is gouging customers. That supposes malice on the part of Paizo, which I find distasteful given your complete lack of personal knowledge of the people involved. Perhaps I am mistaken and you've attended PaizoCon or GenCon and met with them, but I doubt it.

The fact you just stated you made an assumption about anything, again dissolves your argument. Facts matter, nothing else.

It's hilarious that you think I need to have "personal knowledge" of anyone, to see the practices of a company via pricing. (Regardless of whether I met anyone, or not.) That literally makes no sense.
This is a business, not a club house. This company is attempting to make money, and succeed against a MULTITUDE of competitors. Most of which are chomping at the bit, to get geek's money. Which none of us have generally. Since we are still basking in a world where most countries economies are not booming.
- If a company makes such a move, that is with intent.
- If they make a move that is to this degree of gouging, that's also INTENT.
As was also stated above (which I say thanks to Arnim Thayer as I haven't been in the PFS circle for a while to know the going ons), it will have varying effects it seems across the board.

But hey, I could just be blowing steam. Which is why, at the end of the day, we will see numbers in a year/each quarter. It's obvious no one from Paizo thinks this is a bad move, so they'll continue their path.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Oh, I certainly hope you'll be around to continue this discussion if Paizo doesn't fall over in 6 months.

Scarab Sages

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Gorbacz wrote:
Oh, I certainly hope you'll be around to continue this discussion if Paizo doesn't fall over in 6 months.

Too short of a time, things are tracked in seasonal quarters (last was Spring), and yearly. Especially when new editions come out, always check in the next year. Since guess what happens then? Another GenCon, more releases, and then you see if any game from the previous year, is still marching forward full steam.

It's September, anyone cracking champagne about PF2E right now hasn't seen now the gaming industry tracks in the long term.
Is it good that things sold out? Yes, obviously, that's money made. Same as they got a second season on G&S with their show. Interest to keep things alive, moving forward, and getting new players.

There's a good reason 5E pulled out the Eberron card.
As well as PF waiting five years in until releasing 2E.

It's all about timing, and when to try to keep grasping at customers to keep them paying for YOUR product, and not someone else's.

Grand Lodge

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Hunters Moon wrote:
The fact you just stated you made an assumption about anything, again dissolves your argument. Facts matter, nothing else.

See, if you didn't talk like this, I never would have bothered you. I'm not making arguments.

Grand Lodge

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Hunters Moon wrote:
And you once again you reveal your true colors, why did you bother in the first place, and make direct statements against me?

Because I disagree with you and dislike your tone. Such as 'reveal your true colors'. I have never hidden where I stand.

Scarab Sages

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TriOmegaZero wrote:
Hunters Moon wrote:
The fact you just stated you made an assumption about anything, again dissolves your argument. Facts matter, nothing else.
See, if you didn't talk like this, I never would have bothered you. I'm not making arguments.

And you once again you reveal your true colors, why did you bother in the first place, and make direct statements against me? Instead of JUST talking about the subject matter at hand? Here's a hint: try sticking to the title of the thread, and NOT directing your statements at me specifically. Might help your statements to be engaged with better.


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Hunters Moon wrote:
TriOmegaZero wrote:
Yeah, if HM had come in saying "Hey, I think this price point is too high, here's why" rather than "Paizo is gouging customers with low content high prices!" I would have just nodded and moved on.
Funny how the same statement, said in two different ways, alters the facts of it. I don't sugar coat things, I say it like it is, sorry mate.

One: they're not the same statement. The version TOZ proposed is a statement of personal opinion regarding perception of price. The second is an accusation of malicious intent. That you read the two as being identical explains why nobody is getting through to you.

Two: there is a drastic difference between not sugar-coating things and dousing them in raw sewage.

Three: people use the phrase "I say it like it is" frequently do nothing of the sort. I believe your participation in this discussion falls in that category. You may say it as you see it, but your analysis of implications, intents, and consequences of the circumstance is quite open to debate. Obviously.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Starfinder Maps Subscriber

Hey Gang --

We seem to be retreading the same issues in this thread, so let's sum up:

1) Some people are concerned that Paizo's PDF pricing is too high, especially for the page count. They've noted the rise in price and are concerned about how it will impact local gaming and gamers.

2) Sara Marie explained that Paizo has raised the rates of the PDFs to be more fair to third party publishers who cannot afford to discount their pricing the way Paizo can.

3) There has been ample discussion on whether the Lost Omens line is selling well. It has sold out on Paizo and on Amazon, but it appears there are also some brick & mortar stores with copies languishing on the shelves. This sounds pretty normal to me. Nothing will sell out everywhere at once.

I also think that is an opportunity for those stores to make a profit by selling their copies elsewhere at a premium.

4) There has been a lot of concern over all about the tone of the arguments, and I agree that both sides could be a bit gentler here. To those complaining about the price of PDFs, I would suggest avoiding terms that imply intentional malice on Paizo's part. Let's not use terms like 'price-gouging'. 'Overpriced' or 'mispriced' are much more acceptable. To those supporting Paizo, let's not make this personal either. Frankly, all of us could take a deep breath and assume better intentions of our fellow posters.

I am sympathetic to the concerns that the price may be a bit high. There will absolutely be PFS players who will not be able to afford the Lost Omens line. As an online VC, I recognize that this may be a hardship for some of my international players. Fortunately, the CRB remains affordable, and has lots of great options for character building.

From the other side, I am also a Paizo freelancer. I like getting paid a decent wage for the work that I do. I am grateful that I don't have to make the hard decisions on how to price product, because I would have no idea how to value it correctly.

I think this is an important discussion, but I for one would appreciate it if we all remembered that we are talking to real people with real concerns on both sides of the argument. We're arguing because we love the game, and because we're passionate lovers of Paizo and its products.

Thanks for listening,
Hmm
VC of Online Play & Paizo Freelancer

Silver Crusade

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Hunters Moon wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Hunters Moon wrote:
Like I said before, come back next year, let's track the quarterly sales. And we will see if Paizo can get out of 5th place, and beat Vampire and Star Wars...
If Pathfinder/Starfinder is selling well why do they need to beat Vampire or Star Wars?

Pathfinder has slipped to 5th place, behind Star Wars and Vampire. Starfinder holds 2nd, with 5E being the top dog (as expected at this stage).

PF1E held number one for a good number of years (I think it was two consecutively?), but the moment 5E came out, they started to slip faster and faster behind.
That's why I was stated earlier, we will wait and see the numbers in the coming months. If players don't care for this pricing, then they'll start rising. If they do, then that's a tell tale sign they were gouging, and players said no way, and shuffled off.
It's always laughable when I hear a company shout "We sold out!" so early on. Being around for decades in gaming, trust me, a new edition always sparks some interest. Let's see if it has any real legs though in the long run.

You didn’t answer my question.

If Pathfinder/Starfinder is selling well why does it need to beat Vampire or Star Wars or 5e?

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Starfinder Maps Subscriber

One more thought:

Vic Wertz, veteran players often give out the ten dollar vouchers they win at conventions to new players to help them purchase their first PDF of the core rulebook. With the CRB PDF now costing 14.99, is it possible to have the value of new vouchers rise to 15 dollars?

Just a suggestion!

Hmm


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Steve Geddes wrote:
I probably didn’t phrase that very well.

No worries, friend. I was just clarifying. And would've dropped it without commenting further except...

Amazon.ca just sent notice they think they'll have stock Sept 25th-30th. I suspect they're smoking something recently legalized here, but hey. We'll see.

Scarab Sages

Anguish wrote:
Hunters Moon wrote:
TriOmegaZero wrote:
Yeah, if HM had come in saying "Hey, I think this price point is too high, here's why" rather than "Paizo is gouging customers with low content high prices!" I would have just nodded and moved on.
Funny how the same statement, said in two different ways, alters the facts of it. I don't sugar coat things, I say it like it is, sorry mate.

One: they're not the same statement. The version TOZ proposed is a statement of personal opinion regarding perception of price. The second is an accusation of malicious intent. That you read the two as being identical explains why nobody is getting through to you.

Two: there is a drastic difference between not sugar-coating things and dousing them in raw sewage.

Three: people use the phrase "I say it like it is" frequently do nothing of the sort. I believe your participation in this discussion falls in that category. You may say it as you see it, but your analysis of implications, intents, and consequences of the circumstance is quite open to debate. Obviously.

One: Basically ignored earlier statements with comparisons to other companies, their product and pricing. Two: You dump sewage on me by your ridiculous pricing methods, you get it spewed back. I don't have to be kind or compassionate, when this sort of thing happens from a company. Three: You can debate it until the cows come home, as I said earlier, come back in a year, or at the quarterly markers. See if Paizo has risen in sales, or not. Fourth: I can get you a ton of copies easily, come around my city. There are at least 20 within arms reach.

Silver Crusade

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Apparently all of my post got eaten somehow. I don't think it's fair to compare the monopoly that is Diamond Comics Distribution to RPG publishing. ALL comics companies have to use Diamond to distribute their books. Therefore a lot of the ordering process for stores is controlled by Diamond (order so many copies of this book to get a variant cover is an example) and it's harder to return damaged or otherwise unsellable comics because of the monopoly. Vic can correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't believe the RPG industry as a whole or even Paizo specifically are as reliant on a single distributer like the comics industry is.

Context: I am a freelance comic journalist with deep knowledge on how the industry works, including the problems with Diamond.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Manager

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HMM wrote:


One more thought:

Vic Wertz, veteran players often give out the ten dollar vouchers they win at conventions to new players to help them purchase their first PDF of the core rulebook. With the CRB PDF now costing 14.99, is it possible to have the value of new vouchers rise to 15 dollars?

I'll answer this, since it involves event support, which falls under my purview.

Our 2020 budget is pretty much locked in. Is a good point of reference for the 2021 budgeting cycle, so thank you for asking!

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