A VERY INTERESTING INTERVIEW WITH TSR
Post new topic Reply to topic Page 1 of 1
Author

User avatar

Verbose Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 1293
Joined: Nov 24, 2002
Last Visit: Apr 05, 2021
Location: Brescia, Italy

Post Posted: Fri Feb 13, 2004 1:33 pm 
 

I received today a copy of issue 16 (february 1993) of Collectible Toys and Values. I'm not at all interested in toys, but I was attracted to the 'TSR interview' quoted by the seller. I thought it was an interview about TSR's toys, instead it was a (very interesting) interview with Harold Johnson about TSR in general and some 'collectible' products. The interviews has many interesting bits of info. For example, regarding the Orange B3, Johnson states that the vast majority of the copies printed were shipped directly from the printers to distributors and shops ("outer shipping"). When shops and distributors informed TSR about 'questionable' artwork and concepts, the modules were recalled. Nonetheless, Johnson believed there were 2,000 copies in existence after the module's recall ("10% of the initial order"). The fact that after so many years 10% of that 10% (200 copies) survives seem realistic to me.
Other interesting things are initial print runs for books such as MM, DMG (two print runs of 40,000 copies EACH in TWO WEEKS!) and PH, for the 'giant sized' modules (I 3-5, GDQ 1-7, T 1-4, etc.), for collectible trading cards and so on. There are clarifications about the TSR product codes for retailers too and why some codes were never used.
One of the most curious things I read was the rarity (at the time, it seems) of Leaves from the Inn of the Last Home, the DragonLance sourcebook. Is it true even today?

I'm thinking of scanning and publishing the interview on my magazine, in original form. But what about creating on The Acaeum a section for such materials for all to see and use? It could be an useful repository of knowledge, especially for the 'corporate' part of TSR's history.

Yes, this magazne was one of the most satisfying purchases of mine  :D

  


Prolific Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 905
Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Last Visit: Nov 09, 2015
Location: Karlsruhe, Germany

Post Posted: Fri Feb 13, 2004 1:52 pm 
 

Sotterraneo wrote:One of the most curious things I read was the rarity (at the time, it seems) of Leaves from the Inn of the Last Home, the DragonLance sourcebook. Is it true even today?


I would not say so. These are rather common.

Sotterraneo wrote:Yes, this magazne was one of the most satisfying purchases of mine  :D


I concur - congratulations!


- "When the going gets weird, the Weird turn pro."

Hunter S. Thompson (July 18, 1937 - Feb 20, 2005)



  

User avatar

Grandstanding Collector

Posts: 5626
Joined: Jun 30, 2003
Last Visit: Apr 04, 2021
Location: New Hampsha

Post Posted: Fri Feb 13, 2004 3:17 pm 
 

I'm sure there are far more orange B3's out there. God, how many does Aaron alone have? It's rare, no doubt, but not as rare as tourney mods by a long shot.
Speaking of which, when is he going to drop his annual shrinked B3 on eBay?


If you hit a Rowsdower, you get to keep it.

 WWW  

User avatar

Verbose Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 1253
Joined: Jan 01, 2003
Last Visit: Apr 12, 2021

Post Posted: Fri Feb 13, 2004 10:54 pm 
 

I'd agree there are far more B3's out there than many collectors think.  The shredder seemed to miss a few boxes full.  

As for the Leaves from the Last Inn.  Johnson is right that it is extremely rare, the first print that is.  It was highly sought after at the time and went for $75 plus on frp.marketplace back in the day.  But then TSR reprinted it and the price on the old first print plummetted.  As far as I know, there is no discernable differnce between the prints besides the fact one is listed as a first print and the other is a second print.

  

User avatar

Verbose Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 1293
Joined: Nov 24, 2002
Last Visit: Apr 05, 2021
Location: Brescia, Italy

Post Posted: Sat Feb 14, 2004 5:03 am 
 

dathon wrote:I'd agree there are far more B3's out there than many collectors think.  The shredder seemed to miss a few boxes full.  

Well, perhaps an estimate of 10% of the copies not returned by distributors and shops was low. 20-30% might be a better guess, I suppose. Anyway, this explains why according to Official  :D  history just a box of 75 copies plus some scattered employee's copies survived and, nonetheless, they don't reach the prices of ST1. Now I think we know that not every copy was stopped cold at TSR Hobbies  :wink: and we know something more about TSR's distribution system.

This of course will not lessen for me the satisfaction of owning one copy of Orange B3, much higher I must say than owning the ST1 (albeit it0's far rarer and British produced...).

  


Prolific Collector

Posts: 265
Joined: Nov 07, 2002
Last Visit: Apr 19, 2021
Location: Texas

Post Posted: Sun Feb 15, 2004 10:52 pm 
 

Wow!  That was a great find... I wish had read that article ten years ago!   :roll:

For interested parties, I have posted a transcript here.

The thing that struck me the most was how far ahead of the game Crazy Egor was.  While most of us were patting ourselves on the back about a complete set of the "rare" pastels we had just put together, he was out dealing ST1's.  Hats off to Paul!

  


Prolific Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 905
Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Last Visit: Nov 09, 2015
Location: Karlsruhe, Germany

Post Posted: Mon Feb 16, 2004 4:25 pm 
 

Thanks a lot, Adrian, for taking the time and transcribing this interesting article for us collectors.


- "When the going gets weird, the Weird turn pro."

Hunter S. Thompson (July 18, 1937 - Feb 20, 2005)



  
Post new topic Reply to topic Page 1 of 1