Hey everyone.Given that I have zero interest in 4e, this isn't a big blow to me, but I do find it interesting that Peterson, who's long been one of the biggest WotC boosters among third party publishers -- and still is -- is sufficiently unhappy with the GSL that he doesn't think his company would be able to support 4e. It's a pity he's not interested in any of the retro-clones, because Necromancer Games produced a number of truly awesome products in the 3e era, the most impressive no doubt being the Wilderlands of High Fantasy boxed set. I'd love to see products of similar quality and creativity published in support of games like Swords & Wizardry or Labyrinth Lord.
I know its been a long time between updates for a lot of reasons and that can be frustrating. Sorry for that.
I'm still hopeful to do Pathfinder print products and perhaps a key 4E print product or two (a Tome 4E perhaps), but abiliity to product the 4E print stuff is proving to be difficult. Retailers are less than excited about 4E supplemental material. Distributors even less so. Print partners still less excited.
All you know my desire to support 4E and my many plans, some of which are even under way. Right now, the 4E PRINT plans dont look like they are going to happen.
I dont want this to turn into a "yeah Pathfinder, boo 4E" thread. Any such posts will be deleted. This is an update thread, not an edition wars thread.
Other than a key 4E product, such as a Tome 4E, I dont see Necro doing much in the way of print 4E products. That leaves us with the possibility of pdf products. That is not necessarily bad, but it would reflect a shift in our traditional product strategies and will require different analysis on how to go forward.
In large part this situation is due to the delay of an acceptable GSL. Not having one at launch created a huge slowdown of momentum as well as a retailer and distributor gap where distributors didnt have 3Ps plugged in to the product array for 4E. Now, having no 3P track record for 4E they are wary (and probably happy to have some of it go away). Had there been a GSL at launch I think we would have hit a few big products and gotten distributors on board for 3P products for 4E. But that didnt happen. Now I think we have a chasm we just cant cross with anything but a tiny selection of key 4E products, such as a Tome 4E. But that said, even the idea of a Tome 4E has been floated by those who matter and even for a product like that there is less than total enthusiasm.
All that said, we are exploring pdf and print on demand options.
It would be fair to say that I am frustrated by the path 4E and 3P support for 4E has taken and that we, essentially, had the ability taken from us to support 4E by the mishandling of the GSL. I say that while at the same time applauding Scott Rouse's tireless fight to get the GSL revised--which he did and did well. I just wish there were more people at Wizards who "got it" like Scott did and were on board. Its really too bad. 3E was truly a golden age of D&D, a revival of all that was great from the early years of the game. Its too bad that same feeling and fervor couldnt happen for 4E. Maybe I was naive to ever think it could, but I did think that.
All this means is likely no big 4E print products (maybe one or two at most) and perhaps only a few Pathfinder print products. We are still in contact with Paizo and have a good relationship there. We still have great connections for online and print on demand products and are working with OBS to achieve those things. Its just that our hoped for print lineup will likely not happen.
I know this means more waiting for all of you and I am sorry for that.
I hesitated to post this because some will say "Necro is folding." Thats not the case at all. We are just being forced by external factors to shift our product plans. I felt all of you were owed an update and an explanation about that.
Friday, June 19, 2009
Clark Peterson of Necromancer Games has posted an update to his company's forums, where he discusses the current state of the company and its plans, which do not include much, if any, print support for 4e, owing to various issues relating to the GSL: