Hackmaster?  Opinions wanted...
Post new topic Reply to topic Page 2 of 21, 2
Author

User avatar

Grandstanding Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 7942
Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Last Visit: Jan 25, 2021
Location: DFW TX

Post Posted: Tue Jan 10, 2006 1:01 pm 
 

beasterbrook wrote:
jamesmishler wrote:Nobody is buying modules anymore because, unless they burned them or used them as insulation, the retailers are still CHOKED with stuff from earlier in the D20 era... and so are consumers. Hell, I have probably 30 modules sitting in my study here alone that I've never even had the chance to read through fully, let alone ever play. I have enough adventures now that I wouldn't have to buy another one for eight to 10 years, and could still run a complete 3E campaign.


And thats prob one of the reasons I haven't got into 3rd ed, I plan to buy the stuff as prices drop, heavily I expect, as well. And as for pdf's.. well I only buy printed books/mags, just doesn't have the same fell about it I'm afraid...

Brette:)


The sad thing is there are some really brilliant offerings scattered in the 3rd ed landscape, you have to dig through a lot of poop to dig out the diamonds though.  My group (s) play 2nd edition exclusively, I will never switch to 3rd ed, but some of the supplements are so good I've purchased them and plan to convert them to 2nd ed given the time.  Companies like Necromancer and Kenzer, even some AEG stuff, certainly Goodman Games, have published some excellent stuff. Anything by Monte Cook, Sean Reynolds, Erik Mona, Bruce Cordell, is a good read at the very least.  Even old hands like Ed Greenwood still have some chops, I liked his one city supplement that went into detail about an entire fantasy city (sort of like his Waterdeep in the Forgotten Realms, only obviously this was more generic).  
  The problem is the market is indeed glutted with absolute crap...nowadays, anyone it seems can produce what looks like a professional product, only reads as anything but. Some of the earliest releases for 3rd ed read like crap that was rejected for Dungeon magazine....back in 1989. I've written better pick up adventures five minutes before a game than some of the professionally published stuff at the dawn of 3rd ed.  Unfortunately a lot of game store owners who were eager at the dawn of 3.0 to stock up ordered tons of this ballast.  The majority of these were adventures written by people out to make a fast buck that had barely skimmed the actual rules in the PHB.  You can still see this product in most of the stores (did Fast Forward published 100k copies of EVERY hardback in their line?  If so they are all still on the shelves). My local owner FINALLY dumped most of his 3rd ed stock last year in a 25 cent (that's right, a quarter) sale that saw $35 hardbacks go for a buck.
    Needless to say, my FLGS owner has refused to stock any game modules since then, it's only through a lot of pressure I got him to carry Goodman Games Dungeon Crawl Classics (which have actually sold pretty well for him), but I had to tell him I was buying them from his competitor and he was losing my money, and I showed him some of the product, before he grudgingly ordered 2 copies of the each one in the line.  The FLGS owner, not just mine but all over, have no time to wade through the mountains of games coming through their stores to pick out what is and what isn't good.  
    So I guess in a way this is an industry wide problem fueled by the glut of bad material, and a general move away (imo) of the old way of doing things.  Is it really cost effective to publish a $45 hardback supplement?  I don't know the logistics, but can you even make your money back?  How many units do you have to sell to break even?  Unfortunately downloadable products may be the future of this industry.  A consumer could order, download, print out a new module for less than what they are selling for on the shelves.  Now, hardback supplements of 400 pages probably wouldn't be cost effective in this way, but modules, well sure.
  I think niche publishing may be the savior of a lot of these lines.  No one wants to buy/read/run the 100th version of the evil mage's tower in the scary forest...for $30.  However, they MIGHT buy such a module in the Goodman Games line for $11.95 with a retro cover by Erol Otus.  If Gygax and Kuntz ever get Castle Greyhawk or whatever it's called out, that might sell.  My local gamestore owner seems to do well selling Forgotten Realms stuff (still a lot of fans out there it seems).  
  Kenzer's stated problem of not getting WOTC to green light projects is a pain in the ass, but the solution is simple, write more original stuff.  Sure I would pick up a Hackmaster module because of the classic connection (that's why I bought T1-4 Temple of Existential Evil off the shelf, and City of Brass for that matter), but even that connection was getting tenuous. I mean, was the public begging for a rework or HackJammer? What about the coupon books or character record booklets?  
 I have no idea what the future holds for Kenzer, Hackmaster, or anything having to do with pen and pencil games. I will hazard a guess that the "old" way of doing things is slowly disappearing.  Maybe the game stores of the future will just have a bunch of computer terminals where you plug in your portable hard drive and download the latest adventure from Kenzer or Paizo (encrypted so it can't be copied to another computer), or something similar. The music industry has been losing money because it can't come up with a successful model to run their business by with cheap downloads and home ripping and burning, I think before long the RPG industry is going to be in the same boat.  

Mike B.

 WWW  

User avatar

Grandstanding Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 6720
Joined: Jul 16, 2005
Last Visit: Jul 24, 2020

Post Posted: Sat Jan 14, 2006 4:31 pm 
 

I want a copy of City of Brass.

I hesitated to start my own thread about Hackmaster.....  When I started a Thieves Guild thread the prices on Ebay doubled the next week.  Coincidence?  :?

Mark    8)


"But I have watched the dragons come, fire-eyed, across the world."

  

User avatar

Grandstanding Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 7942
Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Last Visit: Jan 25, 2021
Location: DFW TX

Post Posted: Sat Jan 14, 2006 10:45 pm 
 

MShipley88 wrote:I want a copy of City of Brass.

I hesitated to start my own thread about Hackmaster..... When I started a Thieves Guild thread the prices on Ebay doubled the next week. Coincidence? :?

Mark  8)


I think you're ok, the last copy went for $3 bucks or so on Ebay.  If you don't win the one you are bidding on now, I have one in my Ebay store if you are interested..!
    BTW, start a thread about Spelljammer so the prices can double and I can get some of this crap out of here.... :twisted:

Mike B.

 WWW  


Grandstanding Collector

Posts: 5611
Joined: Nov 16, 2002
Last Visit: Jan 24, 2021
Location: Wichita, KS, USA

Post Posted: Sat Jan 14, 2006 11:15 pm 
 

CoB is good, Mark, but Rob's original CoB ms. was much better than the final version published by Kenzer.


Allan Grohe ([email protected])
Greyhawk, grodog Style

Editor and Project Manager, Black Blade Publishing
https://www.facebook.com/BlackBladePublishing/

 WWW  


Prolific Collector

Posts: 276
Joined: Feb 26, 2005
Last Visit: Feb 28, 2011

Post Posted: Sat Jan 14, 2006 11:18 pm 
 

MrFilthyIke wrote:Interesting reads...


Indeed.  Taught me a lot.


Regards,



Stephen

  

User avatar

Grandstanding Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 6720
Joined: Jul 16, 2005
Last Visit: Jul 24, 2020

Post Posted: Sun Jan 15, 2006 9:03 pm 
 

grodog wrote:CoB is good, Mark, but Rob's original CoB ms. was much better than the final version published by Kenzer.


Ah...then I shall just acquire the manuscript!   :lol:

   I know that you know this topic pretty well, Alan.  What was the difference?   :?

Mark


"But I have watched the dragons come, fire-eyed, across the world."

  

User avatar

Sage Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 2439
Joined: Nov 06, 2002
Last Visit: Jan 25, 2021
Location: Queensland, Australia

Post Posted: Mon Jan 16, 2006 12:41 am 
 

Badmike wrote:My local owner FINALLY dumped most of his 3rd ed stock last year in a 25 cent (that's right, a quarter) sale that saw $35 hardbacks go for a buck.



now thats what I'm talking about, think there will be some more of this, there is just so mush of thios stuff out there, it looks to be slowing down though... ie they have a cash flow problem with the old stock... now if someone can point me in the direction were i can make a nice big bulk purchase like this I'd buy some d20 stuff...

Brette:)

 WWW  

User avatar

Grandstanding Collector

Posts: 6067
Joined: May 03, 2003
Last Visit: Jan 14, 2021
Location: Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

Post Posted: Mon Jan 16, 2006 8:25 pm 
 

A local store over hear did the same thing with most of their roleplaying game stuff that had been sitting around for a little while including 7th Sea, Gurps, Buffy RPG, palladium, Hackmaster, Rolemaster, a ton of D20 and White Wolf stuff too.  I went a bit crazy and ended up buying all of it.  Over 450 books at a $1 each.

 WWW  


** Banned **

Posts: 16
Joined: Jan 23, 2006
Last Visit: Jan 24, 2006

Post Posted: Tue Jan 24, 2006 7:16 pm 
 

I play HM and it is basically a addon for all the regular 1st and 2nd edition stuff you already own. all the stats mix perfectly and you have alot more stuff to use in your game if you wish. best things I ever bought except the players handbook of 1st AD&D

  

User avatar

Grandstanding Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 6720
Joined: Jul 16, 2005
Last Visit: Jul 24, 2020

Post Posted: Sat Mar 11, 2006 12:31 am 
 

MShipley88 wrote:I want a copy of City of Brass.  

Mark    8)


  OK...so now I have my copy of City of Brass, courtesy of Badmike...who is a fine fellow if I may say so.  Thank you, Mike.

   What I wonder about this publication is....where are the maps?

   This is a phenomenon I have encountered time and time again in my own little specialty of collecting fantasy cities.....the whole point of a city is the MAP, STUPID!  :evil:

    It does little good, for instance, to purchase a gazeteer of fifty or so New York City personalities and 30 or so New York City locations if you cannot even tell which part is Manhattan because there is NO MAP!   :x

    City of Brass does in fact have a map...it is in full color and reproduced in vivid miniature on the inside back cover....sort of like one of those tiny sailboats in a bottle...how did they ever get it in there?  :?

    From the look of this publication, the writers probably created really excellent maps...which were then shrunk down to miniature size by layout people and non-creative business types who always know so much about how to fix creative work that does not need fixing.   :x

    At least the maps are free of the wonderful blank spaces where the designers have not done their job so I can show my creativity by doing it FOR them.   :evil:   Why the HELL do I want a city where the details have NOT been provided?  Why wouldn't I just draw my OWN?

    Another thing that always puzzles me...and it is present in this publication...is the choice to leave out crucial maps while providing detailed maps of things that DO NOT MATTER.

  For instance, City of Brass includes a detailed "map" of a randomly squiggled cavern region that has nothing in it and no details provided.  Why?  :cry:  Couldn't I just draw my OWN random squiggles and call it a cavern?  

    Dude, I want a detailed map of the SULTAN'S PALACE so my players can SACK THE SUCKER!  I'll draw my own fracking squiggles!   :x   Again...SULTAN...PALACE...MAP...SACK AND PLUNDER.  God!

    Dude, It costs exactly the same in ink, paper and space to print a useless map as it does to print the most exquisite and detailed and useful map.  Why must I explain this?  The only difference is maybe one afternoon of work and possibly some later touchups.   :(   Get it right.

    Anyway, I have just begun to read this publication.  It looks like the text might overcome the interior art at some point.

    Geez...I'm flaming a publication I actually kinda like and I have only started to read.  Just file this under MShipley88 "MAP RANT" and save it for future reference.

    However, my advice to game designers...and to new DM's who want to succeed:  Spend your time on the MAP!  Everything else is secondary.  IF you have only one hour to prepare, and you are in a panic for what to do, DRAW THE FRIGGING MAP!

    Did I remember to mention the map part?

Mark   8)


"But I have watched the dragons come, fire-eyed, across the world."

  

User avatar

Long-Winded Collector
Subweb Admin
JG Valuation Board

Posts: 4475
Joined: Nov 08, 2002
Last Visit: Jan 25, 2021
Location: Land of 10,000 ponds

Post Posted: Sat Mar 11, 2006 3:12 am 
 

Necromancer Games is putting out the City of Brass as well:
http://www.necromancergames.com/upcoming.html
This product will have a city map and various buildings, more detail on it can be found in this thread:
EN World: RPG News & Reviews

ShaneG.

 WWW  

User avatar

Grandstanding Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 6720
Joined: Jul 16, 2005
Last Visit: Jul 24, 2020

Post Posted: Sat Mar 11, 2006 6:25 pm 
 

Thanks Shane.  I went over to the Necromancer designer's strand and ranted a tiny bit about maps.
 :?
Mark    8)


"But I have watched the dragons come, fire-eyed, across the world."

  


Grandstanding Collector

Posts: 5611
Joined: Nov 16, 2002
Last Visit: Jan 24, 2021
Location: Wichita, KS, USA

Post Posted: Sun Mar 12, 2006 12:12 am 
 

MShipley88 wrote:
grodog wrote:CoB is good, Mark, but Rob's original CoB ms. was much better than the final version published by Kenzer.


Ah...then I shall just acquire the manuscript!   :lol:

   I know that you know this topic pretty well, Alan.  What was the difference?   :?


Ah, sorry Mark I hadn't seen this back in January.  

Rob had written about 50% of the ms. back in 2002 or 2003 (I forget which now), and then had a really bad accident where he fell and broke his leg severely in five place; he went on medical disability, and basically fell off the face of the earth for five+ months.  

Kenzer, not having heard from him (which wasn't 100% true, since I was still sporadically in touch with him, the VP I was updating just wasn't passing the info along to David Kenzer), opted to have another freelancer complete the project.  This guy wrote the other half of what Rob didn't finish (from Kenzer's POV).  

The tragedy of it all is that Rob continued to write while he was offline, and his final mss. word count was ~98,000 IIRC.  I provided updates on his status to Brian Jelke (I'm pretty sure it was him, but I'd have to go back to my notes to confirm that), but they apparently fell on deaf ears, or weren't passed on, or Kenzer decided that it didn't matter and went ahead with the freelancer anyway.

That's the sad tale.


Allan Grohe ([email protected])
Greyhawk, grodog Style

Editor and Project Manager, Black Blade Publishing
https://www.facebook.com/BlackBladePublishing/

 WWW  

User avatar

Grandstanding Collector
Acaeum Donor

Posts: 6720
Joined: Jul 16, 2005
Last Visit: Jul 24, 2020

Post Posted: Sun Mar 12, 2006 10:30 pm 
 

Did Rob include a map?  Of all the places not to save money.  :x

Mark  8)


"But I have watched the dragons come, fire-eyed, across the world."

  
Previous
Post new topic Reply to topic Page 2 of 21, 2