Adventure Games Publishing is Closed
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Post Posted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 11:20 am 
 

It is with great regret that I announce the closure of Adventure Games Publishing. Print product sales end immediately. PDF products remain available on the AGP DriveThruRPG site through the end of March, then migrate to either the Judges Guild or Troll Lord Games sites on DriveThruRPG (those of you who already purchased them will continue to be able to download them). After that date, Judges Guild and/or Troll Lord Games might continue to make print versions of these products available or not; that is their call, not mine. As all the details about the transfer of properties are still being worked out, please do not inquire after them about these items for several weeks after the transfer.

Subscribers will, over time, first have their final Campaign Installment shipped (100 Street Vendors of the City State, etc.), then as money becomes available, have the remainder of their subscription funds refunded. Subscriptions will be refunded in numerical order by subscriber number.

The decision to close AGP was neither easy nor quick; it has been brewing in my mind for a long time. It is the end result of far more mistakes being made than successess being earned. At one point a good friend, who knew of my work on Comics & Games Retailer, asked me point blank why I did not take the very good advice I dished out in that magazine. I still do not know why myself.

The closure is, essentially, the final result of ever fewer sales on each new product, both print and PDF, such that at this point, I'll end up paying people to take my next product. 100 Street Vendors of the City State, barring a handful of sales of Noble Knight Games, sold a grand total of three print copies. Yes, you read that right, three copies. The PDF sales were not much better, a grand total of 13 copies sold as compared to 15 copies being taken free by reviewers (and many, many thanks to the two of you who have actually posted reviews!)

As though the dreadful sales on what I considered to be my best, most tied-in work of the Wilderlands was not enough, this is also tax time, and looking over the results of the prior year was most educational. The end result, even after pinching every penny and keeping all expenses down to the bare minimum, was a grand total net income such that I earned a total of less than $2 per hour for all my work on AGP in 2009. Were this simply a sideline to a full-time job, that would truly be a nice result. As this is supposed to be my "day job," that result is, as we call it, a "reason to quit."

And so we are done. A few things:

If you wonder why I don't keep print sales open for the remainder of the month, it is due to the simple fact that at this point, even if I get good sales, all my profits from said sales could all too easily be wiped out on the purchase of the ink to print that last book (as ink for my printer runs $100 per cartridge). So any final sales of print products could be counterproductive rather than profitable, and there is no way to know until the final book is printed.

I still have a box and a half or so filled with copies of XXXI and 2008 Wilderlands Jam, as well as two HUGE boxes of Campaign Map 18: Southern Reaches. Rather than simply destroy them, one of these days I'll eventually get those to Bob Bledsaw at Judges Guild; he will sell them as he sees fit. As all other booklets are either sold out or were only printed on order, that is the last remaining stocks from AGP (no wondrous warehouse finds to be hand a decade or three down the road).

Adventure Games Publishing is unlikely to return; I plan to altogether put it in my past, and put my past behind me. Eventually, six months, a year, or two years (or more) down the road, depending on how long it takes the burns and wounds to heal and be forgotten, I will return to writing, likely as a hobby (writing for Fight On! perhaps), then later, maybe, for other publishing... But first I need to return my hobby where it belongs, to that place in my heart where it is a hobby.

This blog, Adventures in Gaming, is also going to close. It is too tied in with AGP in my heart for me to continue forward with it. A month or three from now, I will return to blogging, but elsewhere. For those interested in following whatever shall follow, I will certainly post here to let them know where they can find me.

Adventures in Gaming and the Adventure Games Publishing Catablog will remain up; I have no plans to take them down. Let them remain as historical artifacts.

I could get into the whole "what's going on with the Adventure Game Industry and how it applies to AGP," but frankly... I really don't care anymore. It seems the Adventure Game Industry has had enough of me, and I have finally had enough of it... and so it is time to move on.

Finally, many thanks go out to:

My wife, for being unbelievably, incredibly supportive;
My mother, for being there when we needed her;
Bob Bledsaw (may he rest in peace) and Bob Bledsaw Jr, for so very much I cannot say;
Steve Chenault, Peter Bradley, and the other good folks at Troll Lord Games;
Noble Knight Games and Chimera Hobbies, for taking a chance on my products;
My subscribers, for putting so much (sadly, misplaced) faith in me;
All who purchased by products;
Reviewers who understood;
My fans, many of whom are also good friends.

To all, good gaming!

Fin


James

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Post Posted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 12:19 pm 
 

Very sad to read this James.

I hope this is not a final thing.
I hope that one day (soon) you will be able and willing to reopen your publishing doors.

I am, and always have been a big fan of your work.


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Post Posted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 12:50 pm 
 

Aw shucks.
Now everyone goes to NKG to buy up AGP stock because sure as eggs is eggs, some of them are gonna be worth money sooner or later.
That said, there's nothing really over there to buy now anyhow.


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Last edited by mbassoc2003 on Mon Mar 08, 2010 3:26 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Post Posted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 1:38 pm 
 

Very sorry to hear this James.  I have always enjoyed the stuff you have written, whether it be Wilderlands oriented, Kalamar, etc.  Heck if it werent for you and guys like Al and Shane I would have little or no knowledge of or interest in Judges Guild products.

Thanks for what you have been able to share with us and I hope that you are back behind the writing desk sooner rather than later.


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Post Posted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 8:56 pm 
 

James, I'm very sorry to have read this.. I picked up a couple of your Wilderlands books a couple months ago and enjoyed them very much... good luck with what comes Next... Thanks!

  

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Post Posted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 9:15 pm 
 

Good luck, James.  I hope that gaming becomes fun for you again and that writing follows thereafter.

  

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Post Posted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 4:01 am 
 

So sorry to hear this, James.  I know things have been tough, but you fought the good fight and created books you can be proud of.  Yeah, it  doesn't seem like the market appreciated it, but AGP is leaving the world -- and the Wilderlands -- a better place.


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Post Posted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 5:44 am 
 

I don't think my faith was misplaced, James.  You did a great job keeping us informed, and obviously did your best to make it work.  I hope I can look forward to more from you in the future.


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Post Posted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 7:44 am 
 

Sorry to hear that James. I truly wish that I had been in a better position to purchase more of the material you produced but my own finances has been very shaky over the last few years.

I think that the economic downturn over the last few years have made a lot of people more conservative in their discretionary purchasing. In an environment like that money for hobby purchases tend to be more restricted.

I wish you well on any of your future endeavors.


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Post Posted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 9:21 am 
 

:(

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Post Posted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 9:40 am 
 

Sorry to hear about your decision. I'm just starting to get into the JG items and I'll be looking out for whatever you still have available I guess.

Good luck with what the future holds for you,


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Post Posted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 9:56 am 
 

James

having met you personally etc, i am very saddened to hear these turn of events. while being a subscriber, i am perhaps a little annoyed at the turn of events from that perspective, i am still deflated at the turn of events on a personal perspective. your works are excellent quality and thats all you can ask of a writer. i think they are usable and of a decent quality, but maybe just aimed at a market now, where the demand for such an item, is not there to the same degree anymore? i dunno.

still sucks to see things like this either way.

i hope that fortunes ahead of you have a more positive impact on your life and things turn a corner for the better my friend.

best, Alan



  

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Post Posted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 10:03 am 
 

So are you gonna put the remainder of your stock on eBay? Or has it all gone?
And is there a definitive list of all products by AGP for us completists?
I suppose the Byrny Royal Herald is the rarity.


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Post Posted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 7:41 pm 
 

Oh.. Luckly I bought a heap of items not too long ago.. and they arrived perfectly BTW (I don't know if I said or not)

Thanks.. sorry to hear the news...

Brette:(


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Post Posted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 7:42 pm 
 

mbassoc2003 wrote:And is there a definitive list of all products by AGP for us completists?


That would be nice...

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Post Posted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 10:46 am 
 

mbassoc2003 wrote:And is there a definitive list of all products by AGP for us completists?
I suppose the Byrny Royal Herald is the rarity.


I really should work on this, missing only the booklet sized items and extras due to not having my scanner connected (could see if my girlfriend's works well enough.)

I'd say could also include this for rarity: Imperial Town of Tell Qa 1st Printing (2007):  Limited Pre-Production Edition handed out at GAMA Trade Show.  Hand drawn map found in the center of the book.  Print run for this was 21.

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Post Posted: Thu Mar 18, 2010 11:06 am 
 

mbassoc2003 wrote:So are you gonna put the remainder of your stock on eBay? Or has it all gone?
And is there a definitive list of all products by AGP for us completists?
I suppose the Byrny Royal Herald is the rarity.


Byrny Royal Herald remains the rarest of the rare of my Wilderlands products.

Down the line I'll tally together all the various sales and publishings of the booklets and whatnot, so that Plaag will have a complete (or at least, relatively complete) list of how many of each booklet exist.

As 100 Street Vendors is the second and final Campaign Installment, and WILL (eventually) be shipped to all subscribers, the last AGP booklet will be the best-selling, so to speak, as there are 56 subscribers. All the other booklets sold between 30 and 40 copies or thereabouts, as did Monsters & Treasure; of course, the other full-size books were printed and sold greater numbers. I printed 310 copies of XXXI and something like 150 copies of 2008 Wilderlands Jam, while the print run of AGJ #1 numbered somewhere between 150 and 200... I'm at the library, so I don't have exact numbers. The biggest run, of course, was the Free RPG Tell Qa, which had a run of 1,000 units.

Note that Judges Guild is getting all the Wilderlands PDFs and Troll Lord Games is getting all the generic Castles & Crusades PDFs; they will also get the base manuscripts, and have the right to publish any or all of the products that they get from me. Whether they will is questionable, as I'm sure they have bigger fish to fry... and that is all up to them, so I don't know what they will do, in the end.

As to what is left, there are no remaining booklets, as those were printed to order. I have a box and a half filled with remaining copies of XXXI and the 2008 Wilderlands Jam, plus two BIG boxes full of the Southern Reaches Map (1,300 copies I would guess, as I printed 1,500). All these are going to be given to Bob Bledsaw II; I'll actually be giving them to him at GaryCon II this weekend.

And then, other than printing and shipping the subscriber copies of 100 Street Vendors and eventually, refunding subscribers their remaining subscription balances, AGP will be done.


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Post Posted: Thu Mar 18, 2010 12:17 pm 
 

Aw, shucks. You're leaving the industry completely? Hanging up your mouse?


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Post Posted: Thu Mar 18, 2010 4:50 pm 
 

Industry? What industry?  :?

  

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Post Posted: Mon Apr 12, 2010 8:51 am 
 

Missing anything?



100 Street Vendors of the City State, AGP06201
100 Encounter and Treasues Level 1, AGP00676
2008 Wilderlands Jam ,  AGP00106
Adventure Games Journal #1, AGP00501
Aendryth's Eldritch Compendium, AGP00253  
Barbarians of the Wilderlands #1, AGP00251
Campaign Map 18 - Southern Reaches, AGP01251
Curses and More Curses, AGP00653
Faiths of the City State - Forn Sidthr, The Old Custom, AGP00303
Guide to the World of the Wilderlands, AGP00107
Imperial Town of Tell Qa, AGP00108
Monsters & Treasure of the Wilderlands #1, AGP00201
Monstrous Menaces Compendium 1-5, AGP06101
Player's Guide #1 - Tharbrian Horse-Lords,  AGP05501
Rhadamanthia Continental Map, AGP00104
Skills, Feats, & Languages of the Wilderlands,  AGP05004
Sorcerers of the Wilderlands, AGP00301
Warrior-Mages of the Wilderlands, AGP00302
Wilderlands of High Adventure XXXI, AGP00102

Byrny Royal Herald

Adventure Games Journal Monthly Chronicle 1-4 (More?)

PDF Items only:
100 More Calamitous Curses, AGP00652
Map 9: Western Karak, AGP03251
Martial Artist Class, AGP00254
Monstrous Menaces #1, AGP06001
Monstrous Menaces #2, AGP06002
Monstrous Menaces #3, AGP06003
Monstrous Menaces #4, AGP06004
Monstrous Menaces #5 , AGP06005

Brette:)


Last edited by beasterbrook on Mon Apr 12, 2010 5:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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