PDA

View Full Version : DM Help Would you donate for a high quality D&D module? (5e)



Pinjata
2015-11-09, 08:04 AM
Question, playground,

A friend of mine and me, both long time players and DMs of 3.5, 4e and now 5e have decided to make something that will in the end hopefully be a high-quality, branching-story, rich-lore and exceptionally illustrated one-shot module for D&D 5e. Over the years playing official and free modules and campaigns, we figured there are very few we deemed intriguing or well fleshed out.

Now, we intend to offer the thing online for free. Anyone will be able to download a PDF and play the module, but I wonder if anyone at all would be willing to donate anything if they deemed our module to be of respectable quality and would offer quality fun for the group? Do you know of any similar undertakings by people over the world? Do you think web is already flooded with similar modules of decent quality and that our idea is laughable?

And finally, is it ok for us to post a thread with a link to our module, when it will be done? It is not marketing, since the thing will be free, but I'd appreciate if mods tell us this in advance.

thanks

Comet
2015-11-10, 04:00 AM
Yes, pay-what-you-want PDFs have been a well received thing for some time now. You're not likely to get rich, but throwing your creation out there for no charge is pretty sure to win you good will.

I'm just a consumer, so I don't know the specifics of the process, but people in the old school sphere of gaming and other indie niches have been putting up very good products for PWYW prices up on DriveThruRPG and other marketplaces. It's a great time to be a roleplayer, when creating and sharing content is made so easy.

Khedrac
2015-11-10, 07:29 AM
From what I hear it may be a great time to be a role-player, but it is a terrible time to be a RPG-creator - the RPG market has a rep as one of the worst for people distributing free copies. This applies to stuff being sold for a token fee (e.g. $5) as well as stuff priced commercially.

Sad really.

One thing to try might be a Kickstarter (or equivalent). If you can find out what a reasonable price is first then create a Kickstarter where that donation gets the basic module, larger donations get extra player handouts or similar then your initial production run is paid for.
If you set the target low enough (because you are going to write it anyway) you should get enough confirmed sign-ups for it to run.

Comet
2015-11-10, 08:36 AM
From what I hear it may be a great time to be a role-player, but it is a terrible time to be a RPG-creator - the RPG market has a rep as one of the worst for people distributing free copies. This applies to stuff being sold for a token fee (e.g. $5) as well as stuff priced commercially.


Could you elaborate on this? I'm not sure I understand what specific problem you're referring to.

Kickstarter is a noteworthy alternative, especially for a physical product. For a PDF that is going to be written and illustrated whatever the case, though, I'm not sure. Depends on the OP's ambitions, I suppose.

Khedrac
2015-11-10, 02:57 PM
Could you elaborate on this? I'm not sure I understand what specific problem you're referring to.
If I understood a friend of mine correctly who is much more tapped into online game publishing etc:
RPG games have a very high rate of illegal free copies being made available of published material, even if the original copy is only charging a few pounds/dollars to cover costs.
The rate being much higher than books (where inexpensive legal downloads have really cut back the illegal copy market) and other games.

Comet
2015-11-11, 05:17 AM
If I understood a friend of mine correctly who is much more tapped into online game publishing etc:
RPG games have a very high rate of illegal free copies being made available of published material, even if the original copy is only charging a few pounds/dollars to cover costs.
The rate being much higher than books (where inexpensive legal downloads have really cut back the illegal copy market) and other games.

Wow, that really sucks.

I think a lot of RPG publishing these days is all about good will between the audience and the creator. You need to find a core audience that really likes what you're doing and how you're doing it. They'll stick around and donate or buy your products just because what you're doing is unique and they want to preserve that.

That doesn't guarantee profit, of course, but if you just want to create content and see other people use it that shouldn't matter. Who knows, maybe you'll be good enough and lucky enough to turn it into something more profitable but until then you'll be much happier with just sharing your stuff and maybe having a few dollars in the tip jar every now and then.

Pinjata
2015-11-14, 12:30 PM
Allrighty lads and lasses!

We are a step ahead!

To summarize:

A friend and I are writing a short adventure for Dungeons & Dragons Fifth edition. We have brainstormed a few ideas and have selected five we both like. The goal is to write an interesting and well illustrated adventure that is short enough to play in one night. We are both experienced dungeon masters, one of us is a published writer, the other a professional illustrator.

Can you tell us which of these sound most interesting to you?

A) The heroes must stop a mad pyromancer before she drowns small town in lava. Pyat Pyree, an ambitious pyromancer is performing experiments on an inactive volcano above Port Town. Her goal is to open a city-sized portal to the Plane of Fire. Will the adventurers connect the dots between a stolen Artifact of Fire and Pyrees' plans?

B) An archfey got decieved and is stuck on the material plane. His mere presence is rapidly driving citizens of Lucky Port to insanity. Will the adventurers be able to help the trapped archfey, or will his powers consume the town?

C) A dying black dragon Orihmetes had his adopted daughter stolen. Will the adventurers return the girl to the dragonsí lair, or will they grant her wish to be free? Meanwhile her thief has plans of his own.

D)After the coronation the new King's castle has been overrun by the undead from the crypts below. When the heroes try to save the young king they discover that he killed his brother to gain the throne, and the spirits of his ancestors want to avenge his murder. Will the heroes help the murderous noble or will they avenge his brother?

E)The heroes are investigating the disappearance of a friend, who vanished in a remote mountain village. When they arrive they discover the village is secretly run by cultists who want them gone. After fighting their way into the cultist's lair they discover that their friend is the leader. Will they spare his life or will they punish him for his crimes?

Comet
2015-11-14, 01:15 PM
I like the fey idea. Lots of fun situations and dangers to be had with a town full of the insane.

All of them sound like they could work. Those pitches are a bit thin on details, which is probably understandable.

Regitnui
2015-11-14, 02:25 PM
If you end up going with the archfey, do remember that there are various flavours of insane. Don't just try to run with deadpool or gibbering maniac insanity. The worst-afflicted could be the town mayor, who's helpful and cogent and kind; until you try and take him outside the town hall, and he screams and runs away from the giant killer space octopus spider he knows lives out there, but can't come into the town hall.

The pyromancer and the kidnapping could flow easily into each other; the pyromancer needs the adopted daughter for the ritual, and was going to mount a massive heist mission until she ran off on her own. That way the dragon, kidnapped girl, village in danger or other ritual items can hook the players in.

Mr. Bitter
2015-11-14, 03:30 PM
If I understood a friend of mine correctly who is much more tapped into online game publishing etc:
RPG games have a very high rate of illegal free copies being made available of published material, even if the original copy is only charging a few pounds/dollars to cover costs.
The rate being much higher than books (where inexpensive legal downloads have really cut back the illegal copy market) and other games.

I think part of it is just how clunky RPG books are, and their tendency to become obsolete. A copy of Cloud Atlas isn't useless after 5 years, so it's fine to own it and keep it on your shelf. Compare that to a copy of the Complete Scoundrel two editions old that you only bought for the two pages of feats. Why would you want that on your book shelf? If you want it at all, you'd probably rather have a PDF.

Faily
2015-11-17, 11:08 AM
War of the Burning Sky (http://wotbsadventurepath.com/) is a 1-20 level adventure path. Which costs 10$ for a PDF, and they also have printed versions. Campaign PDFs cost around this level, and it shouldn't be impossible to find a publisher and also to arrange a print-on-demand if the material is good enough. I believe it's DriveThruRPG that does print-on-demand?

Thing is, a module/campaign/adventure path has to be really good before people want to spend money on it.