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Subject: My Cost To Create A Professional RPG Game (is it too expensive)? rss

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A L
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Anderson
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I'm a beginner in board game design. I wouldn't say I'm that bad either. I've designed a print and play game with a pretty cool mechanic, I just have to play test it, but I'm sure it'll be good. I'm very excited about it.

Anyways on to my question. I'm interested in designing an RPG board game but the cost it will take me to create it will be high and I was wondering how much you board game RPG fanatics would pay for such a game that you knew you liked?

My idea will take 1-2 books that have at least 400 color pages each with lots of pictures and different color text and maybe around 500-1000 playing cards. All this sort of stuff will cost me about 200-250 and if I'm successful in making a good fun game that's still a lot of dough to produce! I'd have to re-sell it for a minimum of like $350!

That seems astronomical to me! and I was just wondering if there were people out there that would even consider paying that kinda money for an RPG game???

I heard that to get all the rule books for D&D it can get kinda costly, up to a few hundred so I know there are expensive games out there but I'm just wondering, because my retail price seems steep, super duper steep lol

Let me know your thoughts.

Thanks



Oh yeah. One last question. How complex do you think an RPG is allowed to go? Just give me ur thoughts.
 
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EnderWizard
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If you just need to have it playtested, people don't necessarily need hard copies of the books - PDFs would work just fine. However, if you want a printed version of it, can you use a self publishing site like lulu.com? And then have the cards printed at artscow? I've never tried to make a Print and Play game, but I imagine going those routes would be a lot cheaper for you and anyone else than the prices you've suggested.

I'm no designer, so maybe someone else has a better idea.
 
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Well the print and play I mentioned is actually a separate game from the rpg that I'm thinking of designing. And yes lulu is actually the publisher I planned on using to get the book/books printed for the game.
 
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Eric Etkin
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My suggestion? Find ways to vastly streamline and edit your game. At a minimum 1 book at 400 pages plus 500 cards, and a maximum of twice that, IMO you have way too much going on here for an entry product.

Best case scnario, even if your game was wildly successful by indie standards, your sheer volume of starting material will significantly restrict even that starting audience. Don't fall into the trap of thinking that more detail = superior. The RPG graveyard is filled with bloated corpses that collpased under their own weight.

Can you distill this into a small package and still keep your core concepts?
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James Boardgame
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Even on any other day of the year I would asume this to be an hilarious gag; however, I am intrigued by your description and would definitely order 3 copies (one to play, one to keep in shrink for eBay, I am afraid I cannot divulge my reasons for buying the third copy). If I could make one suggestion it would be for 1200 playing cards and full colour text. Please gmail me when my copies are ready for delivery (but not before).
 
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Very funny! Your post actually did make me laugh! laugh
 
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Well I've narrowed it down to one book and no playing cards. The map of the game will be in the book, so will all the rules and other components. Players will keep track of their players progress and xp using printed play-sheets. But the cost to get that book printed in full color is still gonna run me about 100-150$ But I mean we're talking like a 500 page book with full color images on every single page lol
 
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Eric Etkin
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LandriBoardGames wrote:
Well I've narrowed it down to one book and no playing cards. The map of the game will be in the book, so will all the rules and other components. Players will keep track of their players progress and xp using printed play-sheets. But the cost to get that book printed in full color is still gonna run me about 100-150$ But I mean we're talking like a 500 page book with full color images on every single page lol
Seriously... redesign your layout. If you're hellbent on a 500 color pages, offer that as a PDF only. Even the most professional indie books out there probably only have one color page per 20 or so. Possibly less. And if you don't have amazing illustrations and graphic design, the color isn't going to do much for you anyway.

Focus on making the nuts and bolts of your content 110%.

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Red Devil
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MOTHDevil wrote:
Focus on making the nuts and bolts of your content 110%.
This is key advise. Once your product is on the market you can then decide to release premium editions. Try to break up your product into much smaller editions. It much easier to buy 12 $25 booklets each month for a year than dropping $300 on a new product.
 
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Eric Etkin
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Red Devil wrote:
MOTHDevil wrote:
Focus on making the nuts and bolts of your content 110%.
This is key advise. Once your product is on the market you can then decide to release premium editions. Try to break up your product into much smaller editions. It much easier to buy 12 $25 booklets each month for a year than dropping $300 on a new product.

Right-o. And even the D&D model in the OP follows a similar tack. Sure, a gamer might eventually spend hundreds on books, but that gamer was originally fished in with an easily-digestable $30 rule book.

I can't think of a successful RPG that's effectively a "one book" solution (the new Warhammer RPG maybe?) with a supremely high price tag and page count. And in Warhammer's case, it has the advantage of a well-known license.

I don't know many gamers willing to invest a large amount of cash and learning time into an RPG they know nothing about.

You might want to even consider releasing your core game for free, just to try and build a userbase.
 
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EnderWizard
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And going back to the lulu.com example, I have purchased a couple of the old school D&D renaissance game books (Labyrinth Lord, Swords and Wizardry, etc) in black and white editions because they were more affordable than the deluxe, colored editions. Lulu offers a bunch of styles from hardcover to softcover, color to black and white. No, I don't make a commission off their site but I've ordered enough from them without a single bad experience. I highly recommend scaling back a bit to test the waters, so to speak. If the interest is there, people will buy deluxe/color versions. But you've got to gain that interest first.
 
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