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General Forge Forums => Independent Publishing => Topic started by: DaveSlam on November 27, 2010, 06:57:38 PM

Title: I swinging for the fences! II (split)
Post by: DaveSlam on November 27, 2010, 06:57:38 PM
I suppose it's time I stopped lurking in the e-shadows and posted...

A friend and I are at a similar point in developing our first game as Amar is with his two.
Many thanks to everyone sharing their wit and wisdom.

Amar, race ya to 1 million copies sold?

Title: I swinging for the fences! II (split)
Post by: Chris_Chinn on November 28, 2010, 08:26:15 AM
Hi Amar,

Welcome to the Forge!

There's basically 2 things you should do; one will direct you in ideas about publishing and setting up your business and the second will help you in your game designs.

First, you'll want to do some research.  What you imagine "swinging for the fences" looks like might be -very different- than reality.  Ron's "The Nuked Apple Cart" article ( ) is still VERY relevant. 

It's especially worth noting that most of the 2nd tier rpg companies that continue to do well (like Privateer Press, Steve Jackson Games, Chaosium), make most of their money on other products- minatures, card games, fiction) and sell rpgs as a tertiary business.

With a good game, most publishers can expect a few hundred sales a year.  With that AND luck, then we're up to a few thousand.

You may also want to email or private message several of the publishers here- where they might not give you as detailed info, they'll probably give you some solid numbers to consider.

It's really worth considering the difference of profit between direct sales and through distribution- if you get $10/book via direct sales and only sell a few hundred a year, you're pretty much in profit in short order.  If you're getting $4/book, or less, through distribution, and need to sell a few thousand to break even... well, you can see how that's much more risky.

Second, be clear on what you are doing with your games in terms of design!  Look at the other games, even if you don't do anything LIKE what they've done, you'll have a better understanding of what you ARE trying to do.  Play some other games as well.  Get external playtesters as well!

When you post in First Thoughts or Playtesting, be clear on what you want us, at the Forge, to help you with.


Title: Re: I swinging for the fences! II (split)
Post by: Ron Edwards on December 06, 2010, 05:47:37 PM

The posts above were split from I swinging for the fences! ( to keep threads in their own time-signatures. No big deal.

Best, Ron