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Author Topic: Are GM books done now except for D&D?  (Read 204 times)

Lynn

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Are GM books done now except for D&D?
« on: October 30, 2021, 06:43:11 PM »
I have been working on a game system for a while now and it makes sense to me to have separate player's and GM's guides. Given it is horror focused, it makes sense to me that a lot of the horrific stuff shouldn't be for the player's eyes. But it seems to me like almost all games except for D&D no longer have separate guides for GMs but just pack it all in to the one same book (or box).

That's making me wonder just why this is. Could it be that the GM portion helps sell players on the game itself? Why else?
Lynn Fredricks
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Kyle Aaron

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Re: Are GM books done now except for D&D?
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2021, 08:33:44 PM »
It'll be sales. If you separate the books, you'll sell player books, and not as many GM books. And not as many of either, since:

"Should I cut the pizza into four pieces, or six?"
"Oh cut it into four, I couldn't possibly eat six pieces."

Two books are more daunting to read than one, even if the two's total page count is lower.

But don't worry about that. In the US in 2019 there were 4 million books published, and they had 693 million sales. That's fewer than 200 copies each. So you don't write because you expect to be read, you write because you have something to say. You say and write what you want to, pour your heart into it, and put it out there.

Lynn

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Re: Are GM books done now except for D&D?
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2021, 03:01:55 AM »
But don't worry about that. In the US in 2019 there were 4 million books published, and they had 693 million sales. That's fewer than 200 copies each. So you don't write because you expect to be read, you write because you have something to say. You say and write what you want to, pour your heart into it, and put it out there.

I think in this niche market, that's right. Of course I want the end product to be good, but realistically, there are other things I can (and do) write that should be better money makers with far less effort.

One thing that sort of struck me as well with D&D 5e is that as a DM, the Dungeon Master's Guide doesn't seem to hold the same level of importance that it once did (at least thinking back to 1e).
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Svenhelgrim

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Re: Are GM books done now except for D&D?
« Reply #3 on: November 17, 2021, 07:09:45 PM »
One thing that sort of struck me as well with D&D 5e is that as a DM, the Dungeon Master's Guide doesn't seem to hold the same level of importance that it once did (at least thinking back to 1e).
Gygax played the dirty trick of not including attack matrices and saving throws in the Player’s Handbook.  This in itself wasn’t terrible since you could buy the DM’s Screen, or just go by the Basic/Expert set.  But you also needed the DMG for magic items and treasure charts that the Modules and Monster Manual referenced.  And if that wasn’t bad enough the book didn’t hit the shelves until 1981, three years after PHB, and MM were released.

Also, nowadays we have the internet to reference, so if you needed to know what Boots of Striding And Springing were, you could just look it up on the official, or any 3rd party website. 

Still, a GM guide would be nice.  Even if it is published in the back section of the standard rulebook that players would get.

The only GM books outside of D&D that I can think of are the  Castle Keeper’s Guide (Troll Lord Games), and the Referee’s Guide (Lame tatikns of the Flame Princess).  Both games are based on D&D, but the books are great for new Game Masters.  Castle Keeper’s Guide is comparable to the original DMG in its quality and usefulness.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2021, 07:12:10 PM by Svenhelgrim »

Lynn

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Re: Are GM books done now except for D&D?
« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2021, 11:27:39 AM »
Gygax played the dirty trick of not including attack matrices and saving throws in the Player’s Handbook.  This in itself wasn’t terrible since you could buy the DM’s Screen, or just go by the Basic/Expert set.  But you also needed the DMG for magic items and treasure charts that the Modules and Monster Manual referenced.  And if that wasn’t bad enough the book didn’t hit the shelves until 1981, three years after PHB, and MM were released.

I'd forgotten about that. I honestly don't  remember what I did. Id started my group out in the Blue box, and then the PHB came out not much later. I do recall having the DM's screen before we switched over to AD&D.

Didn't The Dragon also run important DM rules that later came out in the DMG?

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