D20 Collecting
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Post Posted: Fri Aug 21, 2009 3:36 pm 
 

I'm glad you guys are snapping up those copies on Amazon.  8)


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

  

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Post Posted: Fri Aug 21, 2009 3:46 pm 
 

Problem with Amazon is there is no way the seller or the buyer can tell each other what condition the book is in. Used could mean written in or surface damage to the cover, water damaged or whatever.


This week I've been mostly eating . . . chicken and wild rice soup.

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Post Posted: Fri Aug 21, 2009 7:26 pm 
 

All four of the copies for under $15 are gone...so Acaeum guys must have moved in fast.   :D

There is still a copy for $29.95...which beats the copy at Powell's City of Books even with $3.99 shipping.

I would be interested in hearing if any of the other four copies arrive with problems.  I have not had a problem with an Amazon purchase yet.


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 1:55 pm 
 

mbassoc2003 wrote:There appears to be no decernable difference in value between a mint in shrink and a mint without shrink RAR. Provided they are stored well, there is no reason at present not to be able to shift RAR without shrink for $200+ and no reason to believe you'd do any better with the shrink on. So I'd suggest unwrapping and finding out what signatures are on the slip of paper inside.


Based on your suggestion I removed the SW, only to find Bill & Clark's signatures... I feel so violated.

  

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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 3:35 pm 
 

Ah well. Along with 994 of the rest of us.
Still, they remain to be found.
You're damn lucky to have found a copy. Where'd you get it? eBay?
I'm giving serious consideration to buying and stock piling RAR. It's a great product.


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 3:37 pm 
 

I know that I certainly like the box!  :D


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 4:14 pm 
 

I had a copy in shrink that I bought last summer.  I stared at it for a little while but wanted to know if it had the golden ticket as well so I cracked it open.

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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 5:51 pm 
 

mbassoc2003 wrote:Ah well. Along with 994 of the rest of us.
Still, they remain to be found.
You're damn lucky to have found a copy. Where'd you get it? eBay?
I'm giving serious consideration to buying and stock piling RAR. It's a great product.


I got it from my LGS a few weeks ago, where- no doubt- it had sat since it was ordered!  8O
... No, he didn't have any more!

If you do go to Game '09 in Manchester, maybe I'll sell you mine.

  

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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 6:38 pm 
 

Golden ticket....almost am I tempted.  :x


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 8:30 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:Golden ticket....almost am I tempted.  :x


Well, with every one that gets opened, your odds only get better, right :)


I draw the line at collecting... D&D Towels.

Did we need: Jade Magi Sewer Crawl

Shoulda been: ".. from Pangreenia to Floratopolis, from mystical Treeonia of spectral Forests to Schruborial dimensions."  - The Forests of Leng

  

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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 8:34 pm 
 

Right.
There was an NG thread when they first came out where people listed their number and a similar one discussing the golden tickets. A Google search should throw it up.
Surprised you found a UK LGS with a RAR mint in shrink. Shows how thick these people really are.
How much did it cost you?


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 8:40 pm 
 

Anyone try this Mongoose release Sheoloth the Drow City. Read some reviews of it (bad maps, editing problems). Any opinions on it? (Sadly it is not one of formcritics aquisitions so no detailed review from him).

  

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Post Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 9:19 pm 
 

I've never been near a Mongoose since the really early years. They used to employ people who couldn't read or speak English to proof read, and I don't think it's ever changed since. The level of crap they produce is the one major reason I was amazed that Trigee were considering them. Mind you, I don't expect Trigee to do anything but ruin a perfectly good product range and financial base, and on that basis, Mongoose are the perfect vehicle for it. The perfect partnership.

Aside, have Mongoose ever published anything worth reading at all?
I've always considered them to be in the same league as AEG? Fighting to be the worlds worst.


This week I've been mostly eating . . . chicken and wild rice soup.


Last edited by mbassoc2003 on Sun Aug 23, 2009 11:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Posted: Sun Aug 23, 2009 9:02 am 
 

mbassoc2003 wrote:I've never been neer a Mongoose since the really early years.

The Flaming Cobra imprint is related to Mongoose, so those books should not suffer any of the early Mongoose problems.  Game companies get to partner with Mongoose without any of their editing or proofreading problems.

However, the Dragon Warriors RPG has a supplement that has been struck by the Mongoose curse.  Italicized occurences of "fl" are invisible.   8O

. . . http://www.magnumopuspress.com/?p=213

  

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Post Posted: Sun Aug 23, 2009 11:39 am 
 

It is truely a sad state of affairs when a publisher becomes notorios for publishing poor quality product, and cannot be arsed doing anything about it. I can only place AEG as the world's worst RPG publisher, above Mongoose, because AEG went one step further and tried to shift incredible back catalog of crap on RPGNow/RPGDrivethru, by producing some of the worst PDF home scanned images available in the owrkd, then reducing their quality as far as they could manage and offering them for sale.

If you truely want to know what the worst PDFs available are (and I'm taking worse than the early JG stuff offered six years ago here), then go and buy any of the scanned AEG abortions at RPGNow.

Mongoose come a close second, on account that they only produce crap products and fail to carry out any form of quality control, and presumable rely on the chinese to do their proofreading for them. But they have not resorted to asking their neighbour's kids to scan copies for sale as PDFs yet. So, well done to Mongoose for getting that part of their publishing business right.

One day they'll employ someone who's learned English at school, and maybe even someone who can work a DTP package, and then who knows where the company can go. Until then, they will remain second only to AEG as the worst RPG publisher on the planet.


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Post Posted: Sun Aug 23, 2009 1:18 pm 
 

mbassoc2003 wrote:One day they'll employ someone who's learned English at school, and maybe even someone who can work a DTP package, and then who knows where the company can go. Until then, they will remain second only to AEG as the worst RPG publisher on the planet.

Tell us how you really feel.  :)

Sadly (or not so sadly), the days of humorous books like The Slayer's Guide to Rules Lawyers and The Slayer's Guide to Female Gamers are gone.  Mongoose's hardbacks no longer come apart upon opening.  Their proofreading could not have gotten any worse than it was.

Mongoose continues to churn out a lot of product, so they are a successful business.  Flaming Cobra is also going full steam ahead.  Together they publish Traveller, 2000 A.D., Paranoia XP, Earthdawn, Dragon Warriors, Moorcock-based RPGs, and some others, too.  Doing all of that is certainly a good thing for RPG players everywhere.

These are only my observations based upon their website, forums, and visible presence in Internet stores.

  

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Post Posted: Sun Aug 23, 2009 1:58 pm 
 

I tend to rate D20 products on two scales:  The quality of the adventure (game value) and the collectibilty of the publication (monetary and prestige value).  Production values are a secondary consideration.

Part of the reason I like the D20 Era is because the OGL gave power to the people.  Armed with technology beyond our dreams in the 70's, everyone with time to type and a little cash tried publishing their big module/campaign/magazine.   The ones with at least some business sense managed to publish a second product..and a third...

It was classic D&D type stuff....a shared creative explosion.

That's what D&D itself was in the early 70's...a basement project by gifted amateurs with guts.  The production values were terrible, the art was laughable, the writers were eccentrics and the proofreading was shaky....and it was brilliant.

Inarguably, TSR itself got more "professional" as time went on.  But, I don't think anyone would argue that TSR's publications got better as time went on.  If anything, the trend was down, down, down, to the professional standard we find in the 2nd Edition publications.  Dungeoneer's Survival Guide was "professional."  So was Wilderness Survival Guide.  They also sucked...hard.  (Yes, I know those are AD&D not 2nd Edition.  They're just examples of a trend.)

I believe the D20 publications will be looked back on the way we think of pulp fiction of the 1920's and 30's.  If you know fantasy/sci fi/horror at all you can list a large number of writers now considered classic masters who started in the pulp boom.  Also, think of the classic artists who surfaced in that era.

That's one of the reasons I am collecting D20 now, rather than after it has time to molder in garages and get rare.  I think collectors who spurn the D20 stuff now will regret it later.

Of course, the D20 Era set a new standard for proofreading gaffes.  

Part of the charm of the D20 boom was that a lot of it was from enthusiastic amateurs rather than from corporate machines.

Overall, I'd say the amateurs out-created the pros, and not just in volume.  They beat the pros because they had a lot less to lose.  It's like every creative guy got the chance to play literary air guitar on stage and some of them did it really well.

One might look on the D20 products as examples of what historians will call the "early" computer era.  (Hell, maybe even "primitive" or "archaic.")  Spellcheckers replaced people, allowing humorous errors to stay in the text.  Cut and paste technology contributed some goober paragraphs.  

Add to that the wide range of paper quality, print quality, artwork, graphic design, binding and computer-generated maps.....oh boy!

But remember that the term "pulp" had to do with paper quality and production values as well as the mass-market nature of the writing.  Pulps were lurid.  Pulps were naughty.  Pulps varied widely in the quality and subject matter from story to story.  It was all much fun.

The D20 boom has its own brand of charm to match the 70's technology home-brew products (Midkemia, for instance) that made it into print to support AD&D.  A lot of stuff from the golden era of AD&D is cool because it sucks.

I remember a whole table of bargain AD&D non-TSR stuff for 99 cents each at J.K. Gill in Milwaukie, Oregon c. 1980.  Back then 99 cents was a substantial sum for me and most of the items were laughably bad.  If I could go back in time and blow all my teenage cash on that one table I could clean up on Ebay to the tune of several thousand dollars.

This is the J.K. Gill moment for D20.


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Post Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 2:44 am 
 

JohnGaunt wrote:Mongoose's hardbacks no longer come apart upon opening.  Their proofreading could not have gotten any worse than it was.

There is no doubt that the physical quality of the products are fine. Just as Worlds' Largest Dungeon was a solid perfect bound brick of a hardback, an absolute fist class physical book. But any monkey can do that. Books also need to contain words and pictured, and you're right with your second statement. Proofreading could not have gotten any worse because they have no proofreading. They do not remove any errors in the text believing that manuscripts should be presented 'as is', in their original form.

Packard Bell is a successful company. So is Skoda. They are successful because they flood the market with cheap shit, and there are always idiots out there who do not know anything about computers or cars and who are willing to buy cheap shit.

So I guess there is always a position to be occupied at the CS end of the market, and AEG and Mongoose compete for absolute control down there.


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Post Posted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 10:45 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:All four of the copies for under $15 are gone...so Acaeum guys must have moved in fast.   :D

There is still a copy for $29.95...which beats the copy at Powell's City of Books even with $3.99 shipping.

I would be interested in hearing if any of the other four copies arrive with problems.  I have not had a problem with an Amazon purchase yet.


I got my copy of R3 that I purchased from Amazon at $15, it was in NM condition, thanks alot for the heads-up.

  

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Post Posted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 11:23 pm 
 

carrejo wrote:
I got my copy of R3 that I purchased from Amazon at $15, it was in NM condition, thanks alot for the heads-up.


Excellent! :D

It was a prize stash of modules.


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

  
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