[3.x/PfRPG/4E] Goodman Games looking to Expand beyond 4E

aboyd

New member
The issue is it's a market that can only shrink. Eventually people will stop playing, and it's hard to bring new players in without the ability to buy rulebooks. Developing for 3.5 doesn't make much sense. Pathfinder is at least supported. It might be possible to do an adventure that's compatible with both because of their similarity, but publishing adventures for a game that's no longer printed seems like a losing proposition.
Except that unlike most games, 3.5 has free & legal online documentation. It doesn't "die" just because the books run out. I have players in my games right now that run characters off of d20srd.org, and have never bought 3.5 edition books.
 

smug

Better you better you bet
Validated User
Except that unlike most games, 3.5 has free & legal online documentation. It doesn't "die" just because the books run out. I have players in my games right now that run characters off of d20srd.org, and have never bought 3.5 edition books.
Seems to me that significant numbers of people want books, nevertheless, and the srd only contains the core anyhow. I think that the lack of presence in stores, etc, will diminish 3.5 over time and as DigitalMage has pointed out before, Pathfinder might accelerate that as it's an in-print variant.

On the other hand, Pathfinder mechanics are all OGL, for those people that like the changes made (a group which includes me).
 

rotru

Registered User
Validated User
I think a good 4e module has a different set of design assumptions and a different approach from a good 3.x or TSR edition module. A conversion of a 4e module is very low on my list of potential purchases, especially since there are an increasing number of products that are designed for my preferred edition (or one that is highly compatible with it).
I'd agree with this sentiment. The types of planning necessary for these editions are very different. Some of the non-mechanical things that make a good adventure good could easily be translated from one edition to another, but those elements by themselves don't really make a complete product that people would want to buy.

These markets are very different. People who like 4E often do so in no small part due to its departures from older styles and ethics (I certainly appreciate that about 4E). Conversely, self-proclaimed old-schoolers would probably not touch anything with a 4E stamp on it with a ten-foot pole, even if it were compatible with their favorite edition.

I'm not saying it can't be done, I just think the effort is probably not worth it. For the work required, you could just as easily write several different adventures, each tailored for a specific edition, each selling better to their respective audiences.
 

PMAvers

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Validated User
This is probably due to the fact that 4e is available everywhere, and you can pick it up in person, while Pathfinder isn't and people have to go looking for it. It's far more available online than in person, so it makes sense people would go to Amazon for it. I wouldn't think that's an indication that Pathfinder is any sort of competitor to 4e.
You'd be surprised. I've seen Pathfinder books in almost every "normal" bookstore I've been in that carries role-playing games. (Barnes & Noble, Borders, etc.)
 

Dabbler

Retired User
The issue is it's a market that can only shrink. Eventually people will stop playing, and it's hard to bring new players in without the ability to buy rulebooks. Developing for 3.5 doesn't make much sense. Pathfinder is at least supported. It might be possible to do an adventure that's compatible with both because of their similarity, but publishing adventures for a game that's no longer printed seems like a losing proposition.
The 3.5 market might, but from what I have seen the 3.5 market is gravitating toward Pathfinder, Fantasy Craft and other d20 games that have live support. In short, the 3.x market is going to stay, although the x may vary.

The real question is whether the non-4e market is likely to buy modules at any rate worth the cost it takes to produce extra stats. Until that question is answered, it's non likely profitable to market to players of 3.anything.
If that were true Paizo would be bust by now, because that is exactly what they do to make their money. Up until the release of the Pathfinder RPG last summer they were selling to 3.5 players, and their older material still is for 3.5 rather than 3P. Goodman is the only significant 3PP that went to 4e, all the rest stayed with 3.5, although some are now gravitating toward Pathfinder, and they seem to be having no trouble staying afloat. Remember, 3P was released to support their products with a living game, not to actually make money on it's own. It's the adventure paths and campaign support that make Paizo's cash.
 

capnzapp

Registered User
Validated User
This sounds like an awesome decision, until you realize 4E is a completely different game than AD&D/3E/Pathfinder/d20/oldschool/BRP/Dragon Age/RQ/whatever.

The way you design encounters (space, terrain, monsters) and the way an adventure needs to be spaced operates under completely different requirements.

You simply have to design to either 4E or other systems if you want to end up with a good result for the target system in question.

Creating a generic adventure and then supplying a 4E appendix simply and sadly will not work.

Not unless you know something I don't. And not WotC designers either.
 

smug

Better you better you bet
Validated User
You'd be surprised. I've seen Pathfinder books in almost every "normal" bookstore I've been in that carries role-playing games. (Barnes & Noble, Borders, etc.)
Yeah, same here. Only a copy or two, of course, but it's there along with a reasonable amount of D&D 4e plus Dark Heresy and maybe Shadowrun and some other bits and pieces (like Munchkin).
 

olshanski

Registered User
Validated User
This sounds like an awesome decision, until you realize 4E is a completely different game than AD&D/3E/Pathfinder/d20/oldschool/BRP/Dragon Age/RQ/whatever.

The way you design encounters (space, terrain, monsters) and the way an adventure needs to be spaced operates under completely different requirements.

You simply have to design to either 4E or other systems if you want to end up with a good result for the target system in question.

Creating a generic adventure and then supplying a 4E appendix simply and sadly will not work.

Not unless you know something I don't. And not WotC designers either.
I disagree wholeheartedly with this premise. The best adventures and encounters are memorable for the fluff, the plots, and the NPCs. Combat stats are almost uniformly forgettable except perhaps the stats for Acererack.
A 4E encounter may have more minions and sprawl out across a larger area, but the same "encounter" works fine in earlier editions with more or fewer monsters. Certainly in 4E the focus will be on abilities and tactics, but I buy adventures (modules) for the other stuff going on outside of combat.
 
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