JULY 2022 New Releases and Subscription Shipping


Announcements

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
willfromamerica wrote:
Zombie Feast shipped for me today, but it was my only order.

Okay. Thanks for the reply. I can't see many orders being just the AP, so hopefully we get some movement on the other combinations.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

As today is the last expected day of shipping, if that won’t be achieved, could we get an estimate of completion date just to avoid some subscriber panic?


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Starfinder Superscriber

Isn't just before GenCon usually when they sometimes have shipping delays annually?


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They've used to because GenCon has been for long that one critical event when every company wanted to get as many big seller products out as floor sales were a big opportunity, both for sales and flexing your publisher's muscle.

These days, GenCon is no longer as important (to the point of WotC skipping it altogether) and thus publishers aren't under such immense pressure to get multiple major releases lined up to be available once the con kicks off.


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WotC skips GenCon more because WotC==Hasbro these days, and Hasbro has a much different approach to selling than other companies do.

Customer Service Representative

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This month's subscription shipping hit a few technical snags as well as the expected pressures of Gen Con preparation. As a result, we will not be done with shipping today, but are continuing to work on it to get everything shipped as soon as possible. We will keep this thread updated with more information as we receive it from our Warehouse department.


Pathfinder LO Special Edition, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

I was wondering when you were going to announce this. :-(

Dark Archive

Pathfinder LO Special Edition, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
Ed Reppert wrote:
I was wondering when you were going to announce this. :-(

Same. At least now I know my order isn't just lost in the ether somewhere.


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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Austin Phillips wrote:
This month's subscription shipping hit a few technical snags as well as the expected pressures of Gen Con preparation. As a result, we will not be done with shipping today, but are continuing to work on it to get everything shipped as soon as possible. We will keep this thread updated with more information as we receive it from our Warehouse department.

No problem! We know you're doing all you can and working hard!


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Can you tell us when the expectated finish date will be?


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Sigh, looks like ordering an extra book to support Paizo was just too much for their system. Lesson learned.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Le sigh. My watch continues.


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Terevalis Unctio of House Mysti wrote:
Sigh, looks like ordering an extra book to support Paizo was just too much for their system. Lesson learned.

It look like it was a bad idea !


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kryone wrote:
Terevalis Unctio of House Mysti wrote:
Sigh, looks like ordering an extra book to support Paizo was just too much for their system. Lesson learned.
It look like it was a bad idea !

Sadly, I concur.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Eh, even people who only ordered one book are still waiting.

Kinda wish Paizo would just charge right away, offer the PDFs, then ship when they could.

It's a little frustrating to see payment authorizations go out, expire, then get re-applied... and having these long windows where you have no idea when Paizo might ding your card.

Had a friend who had to give up on Paizo subscriptions because their financials weren't always the most stable and it was too stressful for them to monitor their expense account every day for weeks because who knows when Paizo would actually charge them.

Dark Archive

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Austin Phillips wrote:
This month's subscription shipping hit a few technical snags as well as the expected pressures of Gen Con preparation. As a result, we will not be done with shipping today, but are continuing to work on it to get everything shipped as soon as possible. We will keep this thread updated with more information as we receive it from our Warehouse department.

A lot of customer frustration with delays could be mitigated if you guys reworked your pdf model. Same day release of PDF’s for all subscribers would give all subs access to their product at the same time, without having to wait for the physical logistics to be worked out.


One of the subtleties with analysing paizo business is that they're a publisher.

Their customers include distributors and retail outlets. What would be best for the end customer of paizo's retail arm is not necessarily what's best for those customers.

Dark Archive

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Steve Geddes wrote:

One of the subtleties with analysing paizo business is that they're a publisher.

Their customers include distributors and retail outlets. What would be best for the end customer of paizo's retail arm is not necessarily what's best for those customers.

Have they ever mentioned that there has been an issue there? I imagine there are many ways to keep their obligations to distributors and improve customer service from its existing level. Even if the approach is simply consistent messaging and expectation management, there is definitely room for change.

That said, they would need to be some very stringent contracts that’s prevent Paizo from creating a uniform digital-distro model for their B2C side.


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CS used to be an outstanding feature of paizo as a company. They got snowed under during covid and then fired their CS manager last year leading to a relatively inexperienced team now (as several of their longer term CS reps quit or moved to other areas). Given the cobbled-together-over-years purpose built IT system that has caused a lot of troubles. (Though fingers crossed they'll get back on top of things doon!)

What I was referring to is things like "granting pdfs to everyone at once". They've spoken before about the free pdf perk being a real bone of contention amongst retailers and distributors.

FLGSes generally get a surge of sales on streetdate - that pays for the stock which then trickles out the door in subsequent months. The perception of some stores was that the free pdf attracted the "keen beans" - especially because subscribers usually get granted access before the book hits the shelves. So the "spike" is lower and the tail longer which makes it less profitable and higher risk than the 5E releases or other games.

So if paizo were to switch to an all-at-once granting of pdfs, it would likely be at streetdate to allay those concerns. Which would mean most subscribers would actually be worse off each month! Although the problem of puecemeal granting would be solved...


This is mainly gleaned from years ago though (I'm not really a customer anymore and am hardly "in the loop").

I do wonder how things have changed. No doubt the business of selling RPGs in 2022 is very different from the business in 2001.

There is an understandable conservatism around messing with such a core component of their business. That neefs to be factored in too - the potential downside is catastrophic. Paizo dont want to mess with that unless they're sure the upside will cover any losses.

Dark Archive

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Steve Geddes wrote:

CS used to be an outstanding feature of paizo as a company. They got snowed under during covid and then fired their CS manager last year leading to a relatively inexperienced team now (as several of their longer term CS reps quit or moved to other areas). Given the cobbled-together-over-years purpose built IT system that has caused a lot of troubles. (Though fingers crossed they'll get back on top of things doon!)

What I was referring to is things like "granting pdfs to everyone at once". They've spoken before about the free pdf perk being a real bone of contention amongst retailers and distributors.

FLGSes generally get a surge of sales on streetdate - that pays for the stock which then trickles out the door in subsequent months. The perception of some stores was that the free pdf attracted the "keen beans" - especially because subscribers usually get granted access before the book hits the shelves. So the "spike" is lower and the tail longer which makes it less profitable and higher risk than the 5E releases or other games.

So if paizo were to switch to an all-at-once granting of pdfs, it would likely be at streetdate to allay those concerns. Which would mean most subscribers would actually be worse off each month! Although the problem of puecemeal granting would be solved...

If this is genuinely the issue at large, then it’s beyond anyone here’s ability to discuss, as it’s going to be require highly specific knowledge of these agreements and their ins-outs.

That said, I’d be happy with all-at-once-at-street-date as a solution. It’s the uneven access to product and uncertain fulfilment dates that I have real issue with. There is an issue right now where it appears some subscribers won’t have access to their product until after street date. Which is a situation I can we can all agree should never be allowed to happen.

However, this also brings me back to consistent, transparent messaging and expectation management. Both of which can be done better than their current state.


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I agree. Transparency and communication used to be better when there was a dedicated customer service forum.

I understand the reasons for closing that but I think there are hidden costs that went along with making the ticketting system work smoothly.

Fwiw, I'd also be happy with the all-at-streetdate option but many people subscribe based on the reality that they'll usually get the pdf early - even though that isnt one of the promised perks.

So there'd be a risk to subscriber numbers in implementing that.

Dark Archive

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Subscriber numbers are at risk now due to international shipping costs and uneven fulfilment of orders.

It’s hard to argue that those seeing their product delayed until after street date wouldn’t be better off just purchasing a PDF day-of, or getting their physical copy from their LGS. Given the costs of current shipping, it would actually be cheaper for those outside the US to do both separately.

Early access is the only real edge subscription currently has for non-US customers, and if that can’t be an actual perk, it doesn’t make sense to even offer it as a model. Paizo might actually be losing money via their free pdfs over those would purchase both anyhow.

Liberty's Edge

I believe there might be some legal issues about charging for a product when you haven't shipped it yet. Not an expert in this field though.

Dark Archive

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The Raven Black wrote:
I believe there might be some legal issues about charging for a product when you haven't shipped it yet. Not an expert in this field though.

That will be highly dependent on how Paizo have set themselves up. Generally it’s not a huge issue.


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The Raven Black wrote:
I believe there might be some legal issues about charging for a product when you haven't shipped it yet. Not an expert in this field though.

Again there’s a caveat that nothing I know is very current. But early on Paizo’s credit card processing agreements had a stipulation that you couldn’t charge for something unless it was shipped within 48 hours. It was a requirement that many online retailers chose to not comply with, but Paizo weren’t willing to ignore it.


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Old_Man_Robot wrote:

Subscriber numbers are at risk now due to international shipping costs and uneven fulfilment of orders.

It’s hard to argue that those seeing their product delayed until after street date wouldn’t be better off just purchasing a PDF day-of, or getting their physical copy from their LGS. Given the costs of current shipping, it would actually be cheaper for those outside the US to do both separately.

Early access is the only real edge subscription currently has for non-US customers, and if that can’t be an actual perk, it doesn’t make sense to even offer it as a model. Paizo might actually be losing money via their free pdfs over those would purchase both anyhow.

It’s always been the case for me (in Australia) that subscribing is an expensive option. It’s also always been the case that sometimes my PDFs arrived after streetdate (although they were usually early).

I rarely downloaded a pdf anyhow. For me, the benefit was mainly knowing I’d never miss a book.


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Old_Man_Robot wrote:
Early access is the only real edge subscription currently has for non-US customers, and if that can’t be an actual perk, it doesn’t make sense to even offer it as a model. Paizo might actually be losing money via their free pdfs over those would purchase both anyhow.

The subscription model has benefits even if it doesn’t maximise profit.

In early days, the idea was that subscriptions kept the lights on, allowed wages to be paid regularly and allowed Paizo to employ significantly more full time employees than most RPG publishers by virtue of a regular, relatively consistent revenue stream. There was likely a trade off in passing up profit in exchange for reliable, consistent cashflow. It also provided an excellent source of market research (the rpg market is plagued by customers saying one thing and doing another, when it comes to spending intentions and price points)

I believe that philosophy remains at the heart of their business model. Making tweaks and experiments there risky..


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The excuse of having a new CS csn only go so far for so long to explain why their CS had become so poor.


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I live in Europe, subbing is kinda costly, but I do love the free pdfs. I know stuff gets released on AoN/Pathbuilder, but I actually download the pdfs and read them for the month or so it takes for the books to arrive. I wouldn't mind the pdfs being released at street date for everyone, because it's make managing expectations easier, at least for me. I think that the fact some influencers get to spoil the books makes the wait even harder without a set date.

As for CS I have noticed a rather worrying decline. Phone mubers for a line that doesn't exist, emails that take weeks/months to get answered. I love the product, I really do, but I also have my doubts about the direction Paizo is going in.

As a side note, I'd love to see a Foundry subscription. I play online and love the quality of premium modules.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
The Raven Black wrote:
I believe there might be some legal issues about charging for a product when you haven't shipped it yet. Not an expert in this field though.

Is there? I've used a lot of different shipping services for books and other physical objects and I feel like Paizo is the only one that will randomly select the date at which you're charged, rather than simply doing it when you make the purchase.

Most will charge even for pre-orders, or have a specific date at which pre-orders get charged en masse.

I'm not familiar with the specifics of this industry, obviously, but it seems most other companies don't have to deal with this legal issue.

Mind you I'm not saying that it necessarily isn't true either. Paizo seems to have a lot of issues with the scale and scope of its product. It seems to sit in some kind of uncanny valley where it lacks the agility and outsourcing options of independent publishers but does not have the size or distribution network of large companies either. Paizo sometimes feels both too big and too small as a company at the same time.

Steve Geddes wrote:
Fwiw, I'd also be happy with the all-at-streetdate option but many people subscribe based on the reality that they'll usually get the pdf early - even though that isnt one of the promised perks.

I feel like that kind of highlights the problem though. Paizo is simultaneously taking the position that early access PDFs is not part of the product, both to ward off issues like this and possibly to appease brick and mortars, while still tacitly dangling the potential for early access in front of potential customers.

The end result seems like a lot of hurt feelings, with brick and mortars feeling like their sales are being undercut and unlucky subscribers feeling cheated. Presumably the sales benefit is enough to offset these, but it still doesn't feel great.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I can tell you that Hasbro does not charge for preorders until the product has shipped.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

And also they have never claimed early access is a thing. The perk is, and always has been, the free PDF not getting it early. Getting it early may happen, and indeed usually does, but it is not a guaranteed perk of the subscription, and they have never said that it is.


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Squiggit wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Fwiw, I'd also be happy with the all-at-streetdate option but many people subscribe based on the reality that they'll usually get the pdf early - even though that isnt one of the promised perks.
I feel like that kind of highlights the problem though. Paizo is simultaneously taking the position that early access PDFs is not part of the product, both to ward off issues like this and possibly to appease brick and mortars, while still tacitly dangling the potential for early access in front of potential customers.

This is definitely the problem.

Historically, there wasn't a lot paizo could do about it. Guaranteed early access would annoy the FLGSes even more (there were already stores who refused to stock paizo books, given the subscriptions). So they could never endorse that as a perk. Their credit card agreements wouldnt allow them to charge someone and then withhold the purchased product - so they couldnt wait til streetdate and grant pdfs en masse.

They were left with this sorta, kinda real-but-not-promised benefit and many people factored that into their subscriber choice.

The problem of post streetdate pdfs is actually relatively rare. It just gets exacerbated since it tends to happen around convention system and that ALSO tends to be a pickup of new subscribers. So its relatively common for your first experience to be subscribing to a line only to see it on the shelves before yours has shipped.

Things may be different now, but given all the different competing factors it wasnt a trivial problem to solve in "the early days".


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

My watch has ended! Early in the morning!

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My watch resumes as the Kobolds in the Pantry issue has been resolved. Has Dark Archive hit the streets yet?

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

My watch has ended.

Anorak,
Not yet. It goes live on Wednesday.


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Lol, got notification that my PFS scenarios will be sent soon, lol.


Will we be getting our pdfs by the 27th or not?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My watch has ended!

Dark Archive

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Pathfinder LO Special Edition, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

My watch continues, but I got notice about the PFS/SFS scenarios, hah.

Vigilant Seal

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, LO Special Edition, PF Special Edition, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Waiting as fast as I can. Haven't been subscribed as long as many, but this is my first late, bound to happen sooner or later.


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Pathfinder LO Special Edition, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
Terevalis Unctio of House Mysti wrote:
Will we be getting our pdfs by the 27th or not?

Ask again on the 28th.


Ed Reppert wrote:
Terevalis Unctio of House Mysti wrote:
Will we be getting our pdfs by the 27th or not?
Ask again on the 28th.

I think we should be able to get that answered at least.


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, PF Special Edition Subscriber
Zhern wrote:
My watch continues, but I got notice about the PFS/SFS scenarios, hah.

Same! That threw me for a loop - from the rising anticipation, to the imaginary but clearly heard sad trombone.


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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Squiggit wrote:


I feel like that kind of highlights the problem though. Paizo is simultaneously taking the position that early access PDFs is not part of the product, both to ward off issues like this and possibly to appease brick and mortars, while still tacitly dangling the potential for early access in front of potential customers.

People failing to manage their own expectations that are out of alignment for what they were told they are signing up for is not an indication of deception on Paizo's part.

Vigilant Seal

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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Maps, PF Special Edition Subscriber

Can i get an update to my email i sent last week about my order

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