So, as I said the other day, I snagged copies of the original pastel-covered 1978 editions of Gary Gygax's G-series modules. Since I personally had only ever owned the later compilation, reading these has been educational. The most obvious thing I've taken away so far is a realization of just how expensive these modules were.
I bought the bulk of my D&D modules back in 1980-81. As I recall -- and my memory may be faulty -- I paid about $6.00 each for these things, which were generally between 26 and 32 pages in length. That price works out to be around around $15 in today's money, taking into account inflation. The G-series, on the other hand, sold for about $4.50 each in 1978 (actually $4.49 for the first two and $4.98 for the third one). That also works out to about $15 a pop in today's money, so the relative price of modules remained pretty constant from 1978 to 1981, at least.
But here's the thing: the first two G-series modules were only 8 pages long. $15 for 8 pages! That's a lot of money, isn't it? G3 is a little better, coming in at 16 pages, but, even so, it's not a lot of module for the price, especially when compared to the modules published after I entered the hobby. The other realization from this? Gaming stuff nowadays (generally) isn't overpriced; in fact, a lot of it is probably underpriced, at least when compared to how much gaming products cost back in the late '70s and early '80s.
Now, I'm sure someone will no doubt come along and present all sorts of arguments that you have to take into account this or that or the other thing before you can really compare prices between two different years. Sure, I accept that. Even so, how many of us would be willing to shell out $15 for an 8-page adventure these days? Not many, I'd be willing to bet. The truth is we get a lot more game material for our buck nowadays than we likely did in our youths.