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Mace Hammerhand
Great Reader

Germany
2296 Posts

Posted - 22 Mar 2011 :  08:28:19  Show Profile  Visit Mace Hammerhand's Homepage Send Mace Hammerhand a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
Noticed how Sprite is now a diminished name printed underneath the big logo COKE? Sure you haven't! It'd be dumb as frak to do something like this. Yet, for the Realms novels it sure has happened. If I were to look for Realms novels in a bookstore, I would have to dig thru the plethora of other D&D novels to get to the object of desire.

The FR logo is a classic, why then move away from it? Yes, to bring everything under the umbrella of D&D so that every little thingy is the same, communism in a definitely capitalist corp.

How about DC changing ALL titles of their books into DETECTIVE COMICS presents (in a very small letters) Superman (in slightly bigger letters), or Batman, or whatever.

I admit I like my brand names, Levi's, Nike, Sprite, Coke, and while the Realms IS a D&D world, it is a fracking separate entity from Krynn, Ravenloft, Athas etc.

If I go into a bookstore I almost always know what I want to buy. Who do they think they are kidding? People who want to buy Realms books will buy them no matter the cover. Will they be "inspired" to buy anything else? Most hardcore fans have read some of the other brand names before and still returned to the Realms, there was no need and no practical reason to do this.

But when, in the past 3-4 years, have WotC made a reasonable decison?

Mace's not so gentle gamer's journal My rants were harmless compared to this, beware!

Hawkins
Great Reader

USA
2130 Posts

Posted - 22 Mar 2011 :  14:37:21  Show Profile  Visit Hawkins's Homepage Send Hawkins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Lol. It has been awhile since we have had a rant by you, Mace. As unfortunate as it is (and as much as they denied it back in 2007-08), WotC seems to be making the Realms into the default setting for 4E. Just like Greyhawk was kind of the unlabeled default setting for 3.x. I actually would have liked to have learned more about Greyhawk during the 3.x days, but all I really got were tidbits mentioned here and there in various splatbooks. And I am afraid that is the direction that the Realms may be headed.

Errant d20 Designer - My Blog (last updated January 06, 2016)

One, two! One, two! And through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back. --Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking-Glass

"Mmm, not the darkness," Myrin murmured. "Don't cast it there." --Erik Scott de Bie, Shadowbane

* My character sheets (PFRPG, 3.5, and AE versions; not viewable in Internet Explorer)
* Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Reference Document (PFRPG OGL Rules)
* The Hypertext d20 SRD (3.5 OGL Rules)
* 3.5 D&D Archives

My game design work:
* Heroes of the Jade Oath (PFRPG, conversion; Rite Publishing)
* Compendium Arcanum Volume 1: Cantrips & Orisons (PFRPG, designer; d20pfsrd.com Publishing)
* Compendium Arcanum Volume 2: 1st-Level Spells (PFRPG, designer; d20pfsrd.com Publishing)
* Martial Arts Guidebook (forthcoming) (PFRPG, designer; Rite Publishing)
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3434 Posts

Posted - 22 Mar 2011 :  17:16:12  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In all seriousness, how much longer did it take u to comb through the D&D, non-FR novels on the shelf? 3 minutes? Admittedly, im not enamored with the smaller FR label but they've done it with their other settings as well, so its not just a FR thing.

It is, however, a D&D thing and a ploy to show newer fans that the settings are all blanketed under Dungeons and Dragons. So how is it bad to get new (and possibly older) fans interested in other product settings?

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Christopher_Rowe
Forgotten Realms Author

USA
879 Posts

Posted - 22 Mar 2011 :  17:50:10  Show Profile  Visit Christopher_Rowe's Homepage Send Christopher_Rowe a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Mace Hammerhand


But when, in the past 3-4 years, have WotC made a reasonable decison?



Should I assume you're asking rhetorically and not out of honest interest in others' informed opinions about this question?
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Hawkins
Great Reader

USA
2130 Posts

Posted - 22 Mar 2011 :  18:00:35  Show Profile  Visit Hawkins's Homepage Send Hawkins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Christopher_Rowe
quote:
Originally posted by Mace Hammerhand
But when, in the past 3-4 years, have WotC made a reasonable decison?
Should I assume you're asking rhetorically and not out of honest interest in others' informed opinions about this question?
I think for the purpose of civility that should probably be considered rhetorical.

Edited by - Hawkins on 22 Mar 2011 18:01:13
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Hawkins
Great Reader

USA
2130 Posts

Posted - 22 Mar 2011 :  18:03:09  Show Profile  Visit Hawkins's Homepage Send Hawkins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan
Admittedly, im not enamored with the smaller FR label but they've done it with their other settings as well, so its not just a FR thing.
Really? I have not been staying abreast of the other settings, so I was not aware of this.
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3434 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2011 :  15:18:26  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Wasn't there some sort of saying....."Don't judge a book by it's cover." ?? I think this saying can apply just as easily as what's written on said cover. To me it doesn't matter what's on the darn book, espically the artwork as we've seen some funky bad works with the TSR-lined FR books, but the story told inside.

quote:
Originally posted by Mr_Miscellany


Has WotC concluded the Realms are no longer a viable brand? That is, that it has no name or fan recognition? Have they failed to correlate the interest factor generated by a cool Realms logo with future sales?

Or in their drive to "unify" all the settings (or whatever else their business model is), are they trampling over the brand value they do have in favor of the next fancy/en vogue business strategy to have caught their eye?


Hmm. I'd have to say no on the whole. I don't think it's a "FR has been doing bad, so we'll change it" thing going on. I think WotC sees their novel line and says "Hey, they're all setting that utilize D&D format so why not just put the D&D label on it nice and big so people know!" thing. I don't see it as a slight or attempt to piss off long-time fans since, well all the "Core" books of D&D, Forgotten Realms books, Eberron books, are all getting the same treatment.

quote:
Originally posted by Mr_Miscellany


But like Mace, I’m not terribly impressed with WotC’s more corporatized approach to D&D (and their forums realignment a few years ago), because these decisions reeked of a business model that was trying to play catch-up to MySpace and Facebook, as well as World of Warcraft.


As those types of sites and public net-booking tend to have hundreds of thousands, even millions of people on them I fail to see how branching out to this style is a bad thing. Connecting people to play D&D (using various methods besides face-to-face) could hardly be considered a bad buisness decision. Hells, even World of Worldcraft sites tend to generate loads of hits in the millions.

quote:
Originally posted by Mr_Miscellany


In other words, WotC was busy being a follower and not being a leader.

“Unifying” their brands under one banner isn’t a leadership move, in my opinion. It just seems like change for the sake of trying something new, which is underwhelming.

Are sales of the D&D line (game books and novels) so low that WotC feels the brand needs a makeover?


Yea, it stinks that Wizards of the Coast (or even Paizo) didn't come up with Facebook first, but not trying to get on that same page is letting an opportuinity slip by (which IS a bad idea). Unifying their novel line's covers and the covers of their D&D supplements is simply done so newer players don't feel compelled to place each other in respective "Camps". So no more "OMG, you play Eberron?! Seriously that's SOOO NOT D&D!" They want to make sure fans know that it's D&D first and foremost and Forgotten Realms (or Eberron, Ravenloft, Dark Sun, etc..) second.

As for the sales side of the game, no one really has actual sales figures that incorporate ALL Hobby stores, Barnes and Noble, Borders, etc.... that sell both Paizo or D&D products so it's just a guessing game at this point. I feel that WotC's sales are probably doing the same or even a bit better since 4E's debut launch in June of '08. Espically with the Essentials content that hit stores just before X-Mas. So I highly doubt the makeover is done to strictly boost sales.

But I'd like to know how such speculation is gained from something so small as a reduction in the Forgotten Realms logo on the cover of novels and game-supplements

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Brimstone
Great Reader

USA
2909 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2011 :  15:34:18  Show Profile Send Brimstone a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Guys you should just let him rant. It's a 3 year old rant and it tired. Got better things to do than to waste my time with these troll scrolls...

EDIT: No offense meant Mace.

It's just these types of scrolls polarize this place. We have already bitched about the FR Logo in other scrolls, so this scroll should be closed...

"These things also I have observed: that knowledge of our world is
to be nurtured like a precious flower, for it is the most precious
thing we have. Wherefore guard the word written and heed
words unwritten and set them down ere they fade . . . Learn
then, well, the arts of reading, writing, and listening true, and they
will lead you to the greatest art of all: understanding."
Alaundo of Candlekeep

Edited by - Brimstone on 23 Mar 2011 15:37:43
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Mace Hammerhand
Great Reader

Germany
2296 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2011 :  16:35:38  Show Profile  Visit Mace Hammerhand's Homepage Send Mace Hammerhand a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Actually, the rant is only a couple of days old...the other rants are really dated.

Mace's not so gentle gamer's journal My rants were harmless compared to this, beware!
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30431 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2011 :  17:37:22  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan

Wasn't there some sort of saying....."Don't judge a book by it's cover." ?? I think this saying can apply just as easily as what's written on said cover. To me it doesn't matter what's on the darn book, espically the artwork as we've seen some funky bad works with the TSR-lined FR books, but the story told inside.


Yes, that is an old and well-known saying. But it's also well-known that visual input is rather important to us.

If I was in the store, casually browsing for FR books, and there wasn't a prominent logo to call my attention to the book, then there's a fair chance it'll get overlooked. If a person isn't avidly following the novel line, and/or is trying to locate an FR novel by finding the logo, then the lack of or diminishing of the logo makes it harder for that person to find an FR novel.

And for the record, I loved a lot of the artwork from the TSR days. That was when cover art made me want to read the book... Some of the art I've seen in recent years on FR books has made me not want to read the book, and that's before the advent of 4E. I've not read a lot of FR books for the last several years, because in some cases the cover art was downright hideous, in my opinion.

Cover art is important... It was cover art that first attracted me to the BattleTech books. I wound up buying 70+ novels and a lot of the game material, twice, because I enjoyed that first book -- a book I would have overlooked had it not been for the cover art.

The content of a book is of course more important that what's on the outside. But the content is represented by what's on the outside. If the cover art doesn't make me want to pick up the novel to read the blurb on the back, then that's a novel I'm likely not buying.

Cover art is the first glance. The second glance is the blurb. The second glance, however, depends on the first... And it's the same for the logo. If you can't find the logo, how do you know it's an FR book?

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

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I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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Hawkins
Great Reader

USA
2130 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2011 :  17:45:42  Show Profile  Visit Hawkins's Homepage Send Hawkins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

If you can't find the logo, how do you know it's an FR book?
That point is my main confusion over the decision to remove the logo and just include "Forgotten Realms" as subtext to the D&D logo (EXAMPLE).

Errant d20 Designer - My Blog (last updated January 06, 2016)

One, two! One, two! And through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back. --Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking-Glass

"Mmm, not the darkness," Myrin murmured. "Don't cast it there." --Erik Scott de Bie, Shadowbane

* My character sheets (PFRPG, 3.5, and AE versions; not viewable in Internet Explorer)
* Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Reference Document (PFRPG OGL Rules)
* The Hypertext d20 SRD (3.5 OGL Rules)
* 3.5 D&D Archives

My game design work:
* Heroes of the Jade Oath (PFRPG, conversion; Rite Publishing)
* Compendium Arcanum Volume 1: Cantrips & Orisons (PFRPG, designer; d20pfsrd.com Publishing)
* Compendium Arcanum Volume 2: 1st-Level Spells (PFRPG, designer; d20pfsrd.com Publishing)
* Martial Arts Guidebook (forthcoming) (PFRPG, designer; Rite Publishing)
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Portella
Learned Scribe

United Kingdom
239 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2011 :  17:47:02  Show Profile  Visit Portella's Homepage Send Portella a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Planescape should say more?

Perfect blend of art work and setting.

Purple you say?!

Twitter ramblings...
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Christopher_Rowe
Forgotten Realms Author

USA
879 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2011 :  17:50:03  Show Profile  Visit Christopher_Rowe's Homepage Send Christopher_Rowe a Private Message  Reply with Quote
For what it's worth, the logo does appear on the spine, and in my experience it's the rare Realms book that gets faced out. Rare as in "Bob Salvatore" and "Ed Greenwood" I mean. ;)
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3434 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2011 :  20:06:49  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Yes, that is an old and well-known saying. But it's also well-known that visual input is rather important to us.

If I was in the store, casually browsing for FR books, and there wasn't a prominent logo to call my attention to the book, then there's a fair chance it'll get overlooked. If a person isn't avidly following the novel line, and/or is trying to locate an FR novel by finding the logo, then the lack of or diminishing of the logo makes it harder for that person to find an FR novel.


I agree, artwork does play a large role in what catches my eye at the book store. I've found some great artwork that led me to enjoy some extreamly good books like Glenn Cook's The Black Company with illustration by Raymond Swanland or the Newer versions of R.A. Salvatore's Drizzt series with illustrations by Todd Lockwood. But this is the artwork we're talking about here, not just the title of Forgotten Realms on the front which seems to be the pet-peev Mace is talking about.


quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert


And for the record, I loved a lot of the artwork from the TSR days. That was when cover art made me want to read the book... Some of the art I've seen in recent years on FR books has made me not want to read the book, and that's before the advent of 4E. I've not read a lot of FR books for the last several years, because in some cases the cover art was downright hideous, in my opinion.

Cover art is important... It was cover art that first attracted me to the BattleTech books. I wound up buying 70+ novels and a lot of the game material, twice, because I enjoyed that first book -- a book I would have overlooked had it not been for the cover art.

The content of a book is of course more important that what's on the outside. But the content is represented by what's on the outside. If the cover art doesn't make me want to pick up the novel to read the blurb on the back, then that's a novel I'm likely not buying.

Cover art is the first glance. The second glance is the blurb. The second glance, however, depends on the first... And it's the same for the logo. If you can't find the logo, how do you know it's an FR book?



The artwork of the TSR days was very hit or miss with me. I mean, have you seen the artwork for the Legacy of the Drow books or Vampire of the Mists? *shudder* This is, of course, all in the eye of the beholder and a matter of taste. It doesn't really reflect what's inside the book as I've read novels with unimpressive cover designes that were amazing.

I guess in the grand scheme of the large changes coming from WotC, it's just another drop in the hat that I've not thought a second about. I'd be more upset with the discontinuation of the FR novel line altogether. Yea, WotC and I would have some major discussions and words then.

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3434 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2011 :  20:35:22  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Mr_Miscellany

You “fail” to see? Or you just don’t feel like thinking about it?


A little from column A, a little from column B

quote:
Originally posted by Mr_Miscellany


WotC’s forums have existed for quite some time. They’ve been connecting people to play D&D for several years now. If you switch to a new system to attract more people through the power of social media, you don’t mangle your user’s online identities as WotC did (deleting old posts and reducing post counts, etc…).

It’s my opinion WotC screwed up. This leads me to believe they’re putting “the rush to be just like” ahead of “let’s stop and think about this first”, and I don't think this thinking has really left them since 2007.


Oh, I completly agree that they screwed up and went when they went Gleemax which then fell through. After that, the forums they have now is that aftermath. I think they were like *"So I made a decision, and it was... wrong. It was a bad call, Ripley. It was a bad call." and they couldn't go back to the way it was. It would've made them look worse than they already were at that point. So they pushed further in hopes that the Gleemax hiccup would be done and forgotten but it screwed up so many links, quoted lines, and threads that they're still recovering.

I think the Facebook idea is jumping on a ship that fast sailing, because gamers probably would've done it already but now it's "offical".

*for those Aliens fans out there

quote:
Originally posted by Mr_Miscellany


Interesting strategy.

If WotC really thinks this is a problem that depletes sales, they’ve either done industry-breaking market research that flips years of prior thinking on its head or they’re just trying something new to see if it works.

I think they’re doing the later.

While there’s always been inter-setting friction on forum pages (i.e. My setting is better than yours. Nyah nya nya!) I don’t see how players outside of the forums are restricted by which setting they care to dabble in.

For as long as I’ve been playing D&D, every player I know has dabbled in multiple settings. This is anecdotal, I realize; I and my long list of D&D-playing friends from down the years could all be the exception to the rule.
But I doubt it.


I think this was more of a problem in earlier editions than with the Present edition mainly because DDI just lumps them all together in their articles that it's hard NOT to see the Eberron or Dark Sun stuff (and pilage them for your own use). Not that this hasn't happened before, I just don't think that it was less common. And espically with the little setting content distributed with WotC nowa-days, there's less decisions making of whether or not to buy....Waterdeep: City of Splendors or Faiths of Eberron?

Now it's "Hmmm...Campaign Guide? Check. Player's Guide? Check. So....Planes Above or Eberron Player's Guide? Ohhh shiney Artificer class, Changling race and more Warforged options. EPG, check!" Before with tons of source material it meant you often stayed with one setting and possibly the good bits of one or two others. Now, there's little reason NOT to buy the Eberron Player's Guide because you've already got all the printed material for FR.

quote:
Originally posted by Mr_Miscellany


I am curious to know if an active forum presence by a D&D-playing customer/novel reader leads to a deliberate choice to not play one setting over another. That is, is identifying oneself as a fan of a particular setting online sort of like saying you're emo, a jock, a hick (or whichever words kids use to compartmentalize themselves nowadays)?



I've never really seen that in my years of gaming, lol. I know certain settings have a different "feel" such as FR is High Fantasy, Eberron is steam-punk, Dark Sun is sorta Post-Apocolyptic, Ravenloft is Gothic Horror, etc.....

But if I were to take a stab.....
Forgotten Realms - "power-gamers"
Eberron - "newbies"
Dark Sun - "old-school Grognards"
Ravenloft - "Emo, Twilight-haters"

I'm joking of course

You mentioned above about Market Research but apparently Mike Mearls mentioned that WotC is doing just that. Read the Legends of Lore page over on the D&D "offical" site and you can freely read all about the polls they've taken.


4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."

Edited by - Diffan on 23 Mar 2011 20:36:00
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Alisttair
Great Reader

Canada
3054 Posts

Posted - 24 Mar 2011 :  11:07:36  Show Profile  Visit Alisttair's Homepage  Click to see Alisttair's MSN Messenger address Send Alisttair a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Christopher_Rowe

For what it's worth, the logo does appear on the spine, and in my experience it's the rare Realms book that gets faced out. Rare as in "Bob Salvatore" and "Ed Greenwood" I mean. ;)



So true. Those are the only ones I have seen faced out. I can EASILY identify the FR novels at Chapters book stores (heck, they sort all the D&D novels by setting and the section is marked as such).

And you can't miss the Salvarore or Greenwood ones since the author's name is MASSIVE on the covers

Karsite Arcanar (Most Holy Servant of Karsus)

Anauria - Survivor State of Netheril as penned by me:
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6451 Posts

Posted - 24 Mar 2011 :  11:37:05  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
So the covers and spines are basically treated as plots of real-estate which feature (what the publisher feels is) the most effective advertising that can be fit into the limited space? Just like a page in a website or magazine?

I'd say that Salvatore and Greenwood are basically brands unto themselves. Which is to say that their names are marketable, they catch people's attention, make ye pause and examine further. Even today I see publishers profiting from the unashamed abuse of ISAAC ASIMOV all over new books, the name sells even if the content is unrelated or sheer crap.

[/Ayrik]
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Bakra
Senior Scribe

619 Posts

Posted - 24 Mar 2011 :  12:23:27  Show Profile Send Bakra a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Arik

So the covers and spines are basically treated as plots of real-estate which feature (what the publisher feels is) the most effective advertising that can be fit into the limited space? Just like a page in a website or magazine?

I'd say that Salvatore and Greenwood are basically brands unto themselves. Which is to say that their names are marketable, they catch people's attention, make ye pause and examine further. Even today I see publishers profiting from the unashamed abuse of ISAAC ASIMOV all over new books, the name sells even if the content is unrelated or sheer crap.



Having previous bookstore experience we only faced books out on a bookshelf not because it was a popular book; but, to give the illusion of a full shelf. WotC keeping the familiar FR logo on the spine is a good thing especially if the shelf is full of books. At a glance a Reader of the Realms (or Dragonlance, Battletech, WoW) can instantly spot the book. The facing of the book for a popular author may be the exception if its own display area is overflowing or if the spine sticks out too far for the bookshelf.

I hope Candlekeep continues to be the friendly forum of fellow Realms-lovers that it has always been, as we all go through this together. If you don’t want to move to the “new” Realms, that doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with either you or the “old” Realms. Goodness knows Candlekeep, and the hearts of its scribes, are both big enough to accommodate both. If we want them to be.
(Strikes dramatic pose, raises sword to gleam in the sunset, and hopes breeches won’t fall down.)
Enough for now. The Realms lives! I have spoken! Ale and light wines half price, served by a smiling Storm Silverhand fetchingly clad in thigh-high boots and naught else! Ahem . .
So saith Ed. <snip>
love to all,
THO
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Ashe Ravenheart
Great Reader

USA
3075 Posts

Posted - 24 Mar 2011 :  12:28:20  Show Profile Send Ashe Ravenheart a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan
I think this was more of a problem in earlier editions than with the Present edition mainly because DDI just lumps them all together in their articles that it's hard NOT to see the Eberron or Dark Sun stuff (and pilage them for your own use). Not that this hasn't happened before, I just don't think that it was less common. And espically with the little setting content distributed with WotC nowa-days, there's less decisions making of whether or not to buy....Waterdeep: City of Splendors or Faiths of Eberron?

Now it's "Hmmm...Campaign Guide? Check. Player's Guide? Check. So....Planes Above or Eberron Player's Guide? Ohhh shiney Artificer class, Changling race and more Warforged options. EPG, check!" Before with tons of source material it meant you often stayed with one setting and possibly the good bits of one or two others. Now, there's little reason NOT to buy the Eberron Player's Guide because you've already got all the printed material for FR.

Actually, the old Dragon and Dungeon magazines were exactly the same as their electronic counterparts (in this regard), so brand identification was important back then as well.
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan
IYou mentioned above about Market Research but apparently Mike Mearls mentioned that WotC is doing just that. Read the Legends of Lore page over on the D&D "offical" site and you can freely read all about the polls they've taken.
Don't get me started on Mearls' blogs and posts.

I actually DO know everything. I just have a very poor index of my knowledge.

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Alphabetized Index of Realms NPCs
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Mace Hammerhand
Great Reader

Germany
2296 Posts

Posted - 24 Mar 2011 :  12:46:54  Show Profile  Visit Mace Hammerhand's Homepage Send Mace Hammerhand a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Diffan, your preference for 4e etc aside, what do YOU think? Do YOU like the dominance of the Dungeons & Dragons logo on the cover? Also, after the announcement backwhen that there would be no fourth edition, do YOU so willingly (blindly?) believe anything that comes from WotC?

If what they claimed was true (3.5 sucks), why the hells do I have the fourth printing of the Pathfinder RPG in my shelf? FOURTH printing of, according to WotC, obsolete rules. Their research shows they are on the right path... guess Paizo's just producing the books for themselves.

Blind devotion with not even a hint of criticism has never done any good to the one believing such crap.

And yes, it is crap. The pulling of "ancient" PDFs because of piracy of their current products. The dismissal of everything that went before in a laughable propaganda blitz. The cancellation of Dunugeon and Dragon magazines... all savy business decisions, you are sure... I'm not, and that is what the mini rant is about. Product identity is based on logos, and putting Bob Salvatore's or Ed's name in BOLD on the cover before a FR-logo is something I have no problem with, putting the D&D logo up there when people who mainly READ the novels and don't give a rat's ass about D&D in general will most assuredly confuse, if not alienate, them.

Opinions differ, I have no problem with that. What I do have a problem with is blind devotion.

Mace's not so gentle gamer's journal My rants were harmless compared to this, beware!
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3434 Posts

Posted - 24 Mar 2011 :  13:42:03  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Mace Hammerhand


Diffan, your preference for 4e etc aside, what do YOU think? Do YOU like the dominance of the Dungeons & Dragons logo on the cover? Also, after the announcement backwhen that there would be no fourth edition, do YOU so willingly (blindly?) believe anything that comes from WotC?


Mace, I've made plainly clear that I don't really give a rat's behind what title is on the cover or how it's sized for that matter. I've always been more fond of the art-work and the story at hand instead. I did say that I wasn't enamored with the change. If I had it my way, I'd have just left it alone because I really didn't think a change was needed. I was playing devil's advocate in trying to put some resonable ideas why WotC did what they did. But blowing-up over something (in my opinion) that's minimal with the recent and drastic changes WotC has done over the last few years seems nit-picky.

As for WotC denouncing the arrival of 4E (prior to Gen-Con '07), I knew it was a marketing ploy for gamers heavily invested in v3.5 so that they'd keep buying v3.5 material. The system was so heavily saturated even at that time that it was practically inevitable. So I kept on playing (again IMO) the best version of D&D at the time which was v3.5 and waited to see what the furture unfolded.

quote:
Originally posted by Mace Hammerhand


If what they claimed was true (3.5 sucks), why the hells do I have the fourth printing of the Pathfinder RPG in my shelf? FOURTH printing of, according to WotC, obsolete rules. Their research shows they are on the right path... guess Paizo's just producing the books for themselves.

Blind devotion with not even a hint of criticism has never done any good to the one believing such crap.


Because your a sucker for poor-quality gaming products? (I'm only kidding). I can honestly say I've never heard any "offical" spokesperson say "3.5 sucks and is obsolete, buy 4E instead!" If you have, please show the the quote or link. What I did see were a few comics and the 4E promo that showcased previous edition's flaws. I thought it was humorous because it was true. Still, v3.5 is a lot of fun and I still run it (flaws and all). My friend and I have an understand, he buys Paizo products and runs Pathfinder campaigns and I buy 4E products and run 4E games. It works out well because we're getting the best of both worlds.

And I don't think WotC can do no wrong. They've messed up plenty. But theres a difference between customer callousness and blind devotion. I just don't give a crap anymore. No particular gaming-company is my best friend. I don't take these changes personally. I don't find what they say insulting or inflammatory. This is because I take gaming-companies PR, buisness practices, and products with a grain of salt. If a specific company offers a product I enjoy, I'm going to buy it, period.

If Paizo were to produce 4E material, then I'd probably buy that too (if it's something that interests me) or if WotC would start re-printing v3.5 material, then I'd have to seriously consider the material and see if it's worth my dime. Life is too short to be upset over something you really don't have that much control over. Trust me, the sky will be there tomorrow.

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."

Edited by - Diffan on 24 Mar 2011 13:47:55
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3434 Posts

Posted - 24 Mar 2011 :  14:06:11  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ashe Ravenheart


Actually, the old Dragon and Dungeon magazines were exactly the same as their electronic counterparts (in this regard), so brand identification was important back then as well.


I guess you didn't read the part where I said that it still happend, but less common? I'm not sayin their brand wasn't important then or isn't important now. When a DDI article goes out about a specific setting, "BAM!" there's the brand name right there on top. And with Dungeon and Dragon content more easily accessable, I think it a more common practice to pick and dabble with other settings stuff than before.

And wasn't there a big saying back int the day "Not in my Realms!" which pertains to other setting material and 4E ideals spilling into the Forgotten Realms? Yea, that kind of mindset was never prevailent back then .


4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
14553 Posts

Posted - 01 Apr 2011 :  20:50:03  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
So if its all just 'D&D lore' now, doesn't that make it apocryphal, and NOT canon to the setting? You know, like how Realmspace is technically not canon for the Forgotten Realms (because it is a product from another setting)?

This is truly wonderful news! Thank you for sharing, friend-Mace.
quote:
Originally posted by HawkinstheDM

Lol. It has been awhile since we have had a rant by you, Mace. As unfortunate as it is (and as much as they denied it back in 2007-08), WotC seems to be making the Realms into the default setting for 4E. Just like Greyhawk was kind of the unlabeled default setting for 3.x. I actually would have liked to have learned more about Greyhawk during the 3.x days, but all I really got were tidbits mentioned here and there in various splatbooks. And I am afraid that is the direction that the Realms may be headed.
I remember when they made GH the default setting.... just before they killed it off forever.

Sad that they have to 'force' THEIR favorite settings down our throats, by destroying the old (BEST) one and trying to label all the books the same.

I read an Eberron novel once.... I keep it next to my bed now, for when I have insomnia.

I think if The Realms had been 'D&D online' instead of Stormreach, it would have been FAR more successful. Why base your online presence on a setting no-one is familiar with (at the time)? Lets call that "bad decision #one million and twelve". I think every Drizzt fanboi and Realms player would have jumped all over that - they had a ready-made fanbase (= customers)!

I'd still like to know who's bright idea it was to use a relatively unknown setting to launch a major online presence. There are bad decisions, and then there are EPIC bad decisions (and that was pre-Hasbro, IIRC).

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 01 Apr 2011 21:31:30
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30431 Posts

Posted - 01 Apr 2011 :  22:51:32  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

So if its all just 'D&D lore' now, doesn't that make it apocryphal, and NOT canon to the setting? You know, like how Realmspace is technically not canon for the Forgotten Realms (because it is a product from another setting)?


I love Realmspace as a Spelljammer product... I'm not all that fond of it as a FR resource. I find parts of it problematic from a Realmslore standpoint.

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Mace Hammerhand
Great Reader

Germany
2296 Posts

Posted - 02 Apr 2011 :  01:06:50  Show Profile  Visit Mace Hammerhand's Homepage Send Mace Hammerhand a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I think Hasbro purchased Wizards in 2001 or so, Eberron didn't come along until a couple years later

Mace's not so gentle gamer's journal My rants were harmless compared to this, beware!
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Azuth
Senior Scribe

USA
402 Posts

Posted - 02 Apr 2011 :  03:52:11  Show Profile  Visit Azuth's Homepage Send Azuth a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Diffan

Wasn't there some sort of saying....."Don't judge a book by it's cover." ?? I think this saying can apply just as easily as what's written on said cover. To me it doesn't matter what's on the darn book, espically the artwork as we've seen some funky bad works with the TSR-lined FR books, but the story told inside.


Yes, that is an old and well-known saying. But it's also well-known that visual input is rather important to us.

If I was in the store, casually browsing for FR books, and there wasn't a prominent logo to call my attention to the book, then there's a fair chance it'll get overlooked. If a person isn't avidly following the novel line, and/or is trying to locate an FR novel by finding the logo, then the lack of or diminishing of the logo makes it harder for that person to find an FR novel.

And for the record, I loved a lot of the artwork from the TSR days. That was when cover art made me want to read the book... Some of the art I've seen in recent years on FR books has made me not want to read the book, and that's before the advent of 4E. I've not read a lot of FR books for the last several years, because in some cases the cover art was downright hideous, in my opinion.

Cover art is important... It was cover art that first attracted me to the BattleTech books. I wound up buying 70+ novels and a lot of the game material, twice, because I enjoyed that first book -- a book I would have overlooked had it not been for the cover art.

The content of a book is of course more important that what's on the outside. But the content is represented by what's on the outside. If the cover art doesn't make me want to pick up the novel to read the blurb on the back, then that's a novel I'm likely not buying.

Cover art is the first glance. The second glance is the blurb. The second glance, however, depends on the first... And it's the same for the logo. If you can't find the logo, how do you know it's an FR book?




Cover art is incredibly powerful when it comes to marketing. The amount of money a publisher is willing to pay to have cover art commisioned for a specific novel speaks volumes to what they think of the work, particularly in fiction. As a visual species, we are impacted by what we see, and the "picture is worth a thousand words" argument is understated. Once it becomes realistic, don't be surprised to see video covers on those few novels still printed and bound. Usually, the best art is used on first-edition paperbacks or hardcover dust jackets.

In simpler terms: I couldn't agree more, Wooly. WoTC foolishly believes that I care more when a work of fiction is "D&D" versus "Forgotten Realms." It would be akin to Paramount/CBS/Simon & Shuster putting "Star Trek" on all of its books and then the series in small letters. People are seeking books in a particular series (or setting in the case of D&D) and hiding that brand only angers consumers.

I don't think this is a rant, Mace, I think it's a valid point about how corporate branding departments can be extremely foolish.

Azuth, the First Magister
Lord of All Spells

The greatest expression of creativity is through Art.
Offense can never be given, only taken.

Edited by - Azuth on 02 Apr 2011 03:52:40
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