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Different distribution model?

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Graf Graf's picture
Different distribution model?
Wondering if you've given any thought to an alternative distribution model? Just looking at the publishing schedule it seems like you've adopted a traditional late 80s style model. Main book -> GMs screen -> "regional source books", maybe a [url=http://www.eclipsephase.com/what-would-you-see-hotfix]companion book[/url] for stuff that got left out. Informal message board polling to determine what you'll produce, etc. Doubtless you've thought about it but I figured it wouldn't hurt to ask... why? EP, probably more than any other game, is likely to have a base that is open to alternative methods of distribution. Since you're (you seem to be?) book focused and already have a release schedule planned you might consider the ransom method that Pagan uses for Delta Green. It's kinda similar/the same as book stuff but you get to see your fan bases actual interest expressed in $$ (as opposed to professed interest). People would get a "limited edition" shipped directly to them them when it's completed; if the book seemed popular you'd be able to do a second printing, with errata, etc. if something goes wrong you've covered your cost of capital up front. The holy grail for everyone would be a subscription model with smaller regular digital content updates. You can combine material into books for publication. You get a consistent cashfow, faster feedback, low-cost, a chance to do errata before something is published, a chance to identify a core fanbase you can tap to more easily get useful marketing info, and can potentially get away with pushing back some of the typesetting/graphics stuff. Fans get quicker access to material and potentially some input into what they want to see. Especially if you have a backlog of things (adventures, etc) that are produced (i.e written) but not available (i.e. in a cue to be published in China in 6 months, then shipped to the US, then shipped to the distributors, the shipped to retail) this would seem like a way to monetize that work. (There are significant issues you'd need to address... piracy mostly; but also the expectation on regular content delivery and matching expectations to your marketing) Of course there is more extreme stuff like Open Design style where you have people actually bidding on which project you'd do next and for the right to include stuff. Polling message boards and to try to fill a publishing hole for next year is challenging; just thought I'd mention the existing alternatives (which I'm sure you're familiar with, though I went over just to show my assumptions) and ask about why you've adopted such a traditional publishing model.
RobBoyle RobBoyle's picture
Re: Different distribution model?
Just a quick note -- this sort of thing is under discussion. I may poll folks here on the forums for feedback on it sometime soon.

Rob Boyle :: Posthuman Studios

NiallNai NiallNai's picture
Re: Different distribution model?
One of the interesting things is that CGL has done part of this with the new BT RPG. They sold the beta pdf (at a much reduced price in comparison to their other pdfs excepting EP) with a deal that anyone who bought it would get the final version of the pdf for free once it went to the printers. I was surprised when they did this considering their previous practices with pdfs, again excepting EP.