Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Customers: Be careful what you demand

I have found myself thinking recently that if not for the constant stream of comments on the ENWorld and WOTC message boards from folks saying "4e better not be 3.75" that we might have gotten a d20-compatible 4th edition (essentially a 3.75) rather than a dramatic departure from what came before.

This is just a gut feeling, but it is something that's crossed my mind more than once.


mikelaff said...


mikelaff said...

that link should have been

mikelaff said...

oy -- apparently there's a limit on the length of links? ah well

Chuck said...

In D&D's case I don't think the fans are "unpleasable" (great link btw).

I *do* actually think that about Star Trek btw.

I just think 3.5 ticked some people off, and the call "we better never see a 3.75" just became a meme.

A lot of people were saying it without really understanding the implications of what "no 3.75" meant.

For example, that most definitely does NOT MEAN there will never be a new edition of D&D, which is how I think some of the "no 3.75" meant it.

So since crying to the heavens isn't going to convince a company to abandon a successful business model (the "three R's": revise, reset, resell) what DOES it mean?

It means the new edition must be a radical departure from the past.

I think the "no 3.75" crowd is enjoying a big heaping slice of unintended consequences.

Or maybe they were all ready to jump ship anyway.

That's another unfortunate phenomenon of RPG fandom: you have players who aren't customers.

This makes listening to folks especially dicey. Is it a player who's complaining or a customer?

You wouldn't see (to pull an example out of thin air) someone who stopped watching Friday Night Lights but still posts on the FNL message boards.

mikelaff said...

Dude - why does "Whispers in the Dark" show as your latest book?

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