This is part of my RPG series of entries here at SOB. See the inaugural entry in the series for more details.
I got an email today from Paizo about the impending release of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game that talks about how one can make sure one gets a copy of the game when it comes out. I’ve already signed up for a Pathfinder RPG Ongoing Subscription, which ensures that I get all the core game products as they are published, so the SigO and I will get one core gamebook this August already. We want two of them, though, so we’re planning to buy a book elsewhere as well.
We took the advice in Paizo’s email; I called a local store called Gryphon’s Games and Comics to ask whether the people who manage the store were ordering any Pathfinder RPG core books for this August. As the Paizo email says, telling a local retailer before 13 July that you want the book gives them time to order it so they’ll have it right away when the new book is released. I get the distinct impression that Paizo’s basically saying “Tell your local retailers what you want in time for them to order from us so we know how many to print.”
When I called Gryphon, the answers I got gave me the impression the people who run the store weren’t planning on ordering any copies for the store. I was told they’d order one to hold for me, and they would give me a call when it came in so I could go pick it up, though. I sent an email to the mailing list I maintain for my local gaming group telling them all about this, forwarding the content of the Paizo email as well, so they can call Gryphon to reserve copies as well if they want to. Maybe, if enough people call the store to request copies, they’ll decide they should order a few copies to put on the shelves too. How many is enough in a case like this — three? Four? Maybe the smart thing for them to do would be to order 1.5 times as many as people request. That’d be my guess.
I hope they get enough interest to decide to just start stocking Paizo/PRPG stuff in general. Wizards of the Coast could use the competition, especially considering that many people regard D&D 4E with profound disappointment.
Anyway . . . the following is the content of the email I got from Paizo:
With the August 13 release date for the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook approaching, I’m reaching out to ask for your help. While there’s a little over a month until the book is released, we’re just a few short weeks away from shipping the books to our distributors. Why is this important to you?
With today’s difficult economy, retailers and distributors have generally cut back on the amount of inventory that they are carrying. So if you plan to buy your copy of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook from any place other than from Paizo, we ask that you inform your preferred retailer of your intention to buy from them before Monday, July 13, and encourage them to place an order with their distributor by that date. This will help ensure that their distributor will place an order with us, and that you’ll have a book waiting for you on August 13. Nobody wants to see the distribution channel understocked on the Core Rulebook on the release date; restocks can take as long as two weeks to make their way through the distribution channel–and even longer internationally–so a retailer who sells out might not get more copies until September!
So if you’re planning on buying from your favorite local game store, please talk to the owner before July 13 and let him know you intend to buy your copy of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook from him. If you’re ordering online from a place other than paizo.com, please place your preorder by July 13 so they know how many copies to order. If we all work together, we can get the right number of books out there so that you can get a copy of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook from the retailer of your choice.
Those of you who are planning to subscribe to the Pathfinder RPG line or preorder the book directly from paizo.com have a bit longer: you should place your order or start your subscription with us before August 3 to ensure that your book will arrive as close to the release date as possible. (We’re also planning to bring plenty of copies to Gen Con in Indianapolis.)
So please take the time to let the retail venue of your choice know about your desire to purchase the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook from them as soon as you can.
We also wanted to let you know that the PDF of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook will be available at paizo.com on August 13. We’ve priced it at just $9.99, which we hope allows those who want the book in both print and electronic form to feel that you can still support your favorite retailer and purchase the PDF without breaking your budget. (Of course, those who subscribe to the Pathfinder RPG line will get the PDF for free with your Core Rulebook.)
Finally, we’d like to let you know that Paizo is celebrating our 7th anniversary today, and we appreciate all the help that more than 52,000 of you provided by playtesting the Pathfinder RPG, and that even more of you have provided by supporting Paizo as a company with your purchases and friendship on our messageboards over the last seven years. Thanks!
I really like this game, this company, and the relationship the company maintains with its customer base. The production quality of Paizo books is amazing — even the “cheap” stuff is slick and fancy and feels high-quality in my hands, a welcome change from smearing-ink problems of some WotC publications and other cheap production quality from many other game publishers (don’t even get me started on the crappy bindings on Steve Jackson Games books). The prices aren’t exactly bargain-basement, but so far, the books are worth every penny — and then some. I want to support the company and the product lines I like; hopefully you’ll do the same.
If you want to see the kind of stuff you can expect from the upcoming Pathfinder RPG, you can still download the free Beta test PDF of PRPG from the Paizo Website.