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thedungeondelver

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I always liked the cover on the right: this thing rolls into your village, defenders get grenaded and ray-gunned to death, this hot blonde walks into your shelter and says "Shh...shh, it's going to be okay. We're here to feed you."

"Oh, thank the Gods!"

"...to that." (points to lizard overlord on gravity sled)

"Noooooooooo...!"
 

Bunch

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Especially this week, with the Toys R' Us liquidation taking a huge toll on the Hasbro stock.
I wonder if that will boost WotCs position in the company. The sell almost completely outside the normal toy distribution channels and to a set of customers much more likely to seek out their products rather than stumble on them.

I saw a report saying this will really hurt smaller toy distribution because Toys R Us was one of the few large retailers willing to take a chance on new things and had large enough shelf space to give it a fighting chance to be discovered.
 

Ladybird

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I wonder if that will boost WotCs position in the company. The sell almost completely outside the normal toy distribution channels and to a set of customers much more likely to seek out their products rather than stumble on them.

I saw a report saying this will really hurt smaller toy distribution because Toys R Us was one of the few large retailers willing to take a chance on new things and had large enough shelf space to give it a fighting chance to be discovered.
I guess relatively speaking it won't hit WotC as hard as other Hasbro divisions, but TRU did still sell their stuff so it'll have some effect. A receding tide is going to lower everyone, and if other stores pick up some of the smaller brand slack, that'll leave less space for everyone.

Over here TRU even sold GW stuff for a while; I got my first D&D boxed set from there, although it was the lame "levels 1 - 5, small adventure" one, not the "giant box full of map, adventure book, tokens" ones that my friend had.
 

Dumarest

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I'm just hoping for some good clearance sales...though my luck will be everybody showing up during the workday and clearing out the good stuff and only the junk nobody wanted being left on the shelves.

Funny thing about Toys R Us: I go there fairly often, maybe once a month, and every time I'm there it's an utter pain in the neck to locate an employee, then when you find one they're chatting with another, when you finally get their attention they have no knowledge of their products...I've asked a question only to have the employee start reading whatever the box says. I'm like, "Yeah, I can read the box, too, it doesn't answer the question or I wouldn't have had to ask you." Then when you actually want to buy something, there are about a dozen registers up front but only one or two cashiers maximum, and it takes forever to check out. It's not a good sign when nobody working at your stores seem at all interested in steering you toward your products, knows a whit about what you sell, or has any interest in taking your money. I actually got so tired of the hassle one time I just left nearly $200 in merchandise in the line and just walked out and said I'll see if Target or Amazon have it (luckily my kids weren't there since it was Christmas stuff, or else I'd probably have waited for the privilege to buy from TRU). I fill out their surveys all the time and have told them what it's like shopping there and have even had managers contact me for more input, but they never changed a thing at the store I've been visiting for about 8 years now. So I'm not surprised they're failing. They essentially made themselves a place I'd rather avoid whenever possible. They also do this annoying thing where, for example, say there's a product with six items you need to complete the set...they seem to deliberately only have 4 or 5 of them at any given store and expect you to buy those and then drive around to the other TRUs and hope they have the other one you needed. What a pain. I generally would just buy none then, or wait until I could find all six at Amazon or somewhere rather than hope to find them. Or they'll have 5 of the 6, but 20 each of the first 4 and 1 of the 5th and none of the 6th...incredibly frustrating especially if you have 2 kids who both want the same thing! So...screw 'em!
 

Bunch

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I'm just hoping for some good clearance sales...though my luck will be everybody showing up during the workday and clearing out the good stuff and only the junk nobody wanted being left on the shelves.

Funny thing about Toys R Us: I go there fairly often, maybe once a month, and every time I'm there it's an utter pain in the neck to locate an employee, then when you find one they're chatting with another, when you finally get their attention they have no knowledge of their products...I've asked a question only to have the employee start reading whatever the box says. I'm like, "Yeah, I can read the box, too, it doesn't answer the question or I wouldn't have had to ask you." Then when you actually want to buy something, there are about a dozen registers up front but only one or two cashiers maximum, and it takes forever to check out. It's not a good sign when nobody working at your stores seem at all interested in steering you toward your products, knows a whit about what you sell, or has any interest in taking your money. I actually got so tired of the hassle one time I just left nearly $200 in merchandise in the line and just walked out and said I'll see if Target or Amazon have it (luckily my kids weren't there since it was Christmas stuff, or else I'd probably have waited for the privilege to buy from TRU). I fill out their surveys all the time and have told them what it's like shopping there and have even had managers contact me for more input, but they never changed a thing at the store I've been visiting for about 8 years now. So I'm not surprised they're failing. They essentially made themselves a place I'd rather avoid whenever possible. They also do this annoying thing where, for example, say there's a product with six items you need to complete the set...they seem to deliberately only have 4 or 5 of them at any given store and expect you to buy those and then drive around to the other TRUs and hope they have the other one you needed. What a pain. I generally would just buy none then, or wait until I could find all six at Amazon or somewhere rather than hope to find them. Or they'll have 5 of the 6, but 20 each of the first 4 and 1 of the 5th and none of the 6th...incredibly frustrating especially if you have 2 kids who both want the same thing! So...screw 'em!
yeah this. Toys R Us is poorly run and was asking to fail.
 

Apparition

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Barnes & Noble is next, for the same reason.
 

Ulairi

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My local Barns and Noble is going huge into geek crap that is really expensive like statues and other things. I have moved back to physical books and it’s so hard for physical retail to compete
 

Ronin

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My ex wife is planning to relocate my son to Kalamazoo at the end of July, so I'll be within 3 hours of Kevin himself. They should open up a position for teachin them how to get back on the production schedules that they post instead of this 'we said 20 books this year but we meant 3' thing they've been doing for as long as we can remember. :tongue:

Much as Kalamazoo sounds like the last place on earth I'd want to live, I'd love to crack a little whip in person.
Kalamazoo is only about an hour at most from Detroit. A quick trip right down 94. Kalamazoo is alright. If nothing else at least it's got Bell's Brewery.
 

Ronin

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Being able to have positive cash flow and not run his business at a NOL is success. I’ve thought about this a lot after reading this thread and I’m wondering if Kevin is happy with the size of his business the way it is right now. It could be possible that some of his customers are more ambitious than Kevin is right now. He’s got to be in his early 60’s now and he may be over trying to conquer the world or really grow anymore.

I wonder if we will see the Savage Worlds partnership expand into other IPs that Palladium Books owns. This may be away for him to wind down his own operations while still draw revenue from the IP. The industry really doesn’t have any experience with “What happens when the creator wants to retire?” Because the games are either owned by a larger corporation (see D&D), licensed product that have their own expiration date, or the companies have gone out of business. What happens when somebody runs their company for 40 years and just wants to be done?

I am going to ask at the Q&A at this years open house about what his plans for transition are. He’s getting up there in years.
While I kind of see Kev making books as long as he is able. I would be curious to learn what he has to say about that.
 

Vincent Takeda

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Which beast is easiest to feed... the revenue hungry horde of investors or the content hungry horde of palladium fans?

In this comparison Kevin has perhaps made the wisest choice.
 

Ladybird

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I'm just hoping for some good clearance sales...though my luck will be everybody showing up during the workday and clearing out the good stuff and only the junk nobody wanted being left on the shelves.

Funny thing about Toys R Us: I go there fairly often, maybe once a month, and every time I'm there it's an utter pain in the neck to locate an employee, then when you find one they're chatting with another, when you finally get their attention they have no knowledge of their products...I've asked a question only to have the employee start reading whatever the box says. I'm like, "Yeah, I can read the box, too, it doesn't answer the question or I wouldn't have had to ask you."
I get what you mean, but with the amount of products they stocked, even just knowing where everything is would be a struggle, let alone knowing about even a fraction of the products. The staff weren't being paid enough for that.

I went to the local ones a couple of weekends ago, to go vulturing; one didn't have anything discounted enough for my tastes yet, the other one had been basically gutted; there were only a few cabinets of cheap kids stuff, a few transformers toys, and some kneepads and assorted safety gear that wasn't discounted. I got my daughter a cuddly Luna Girl at a very steep discount. The UK stores still have a few weeks to go, though.

I'll be surprised if Game, our big videogames retailer, makes it through the year. They've already been in administration a few times recently.
 

Ulairi

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My toys r us has a ton of lame Star Wars toys from the new movies that nobody wanted to buy. Had some good board games (the old fashioned classic type) and some good toys for girls which is what most of the store was for
 

Spinachcat

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Toy's R'Us falling is bad news, but they were run stupidly for a long time.

I wonder who is going to fill the physical toy store space.

Amazon isn't great for browsing and useless for holding/feeling/demo before purchase.
 

Ronin

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Toy's R'Us falling is bad news, but they were run stupidly for a long time.

I wonder who is going to fill the physical toy store space.

Amazon isn't great for browsing and useless for holding/feeling/demo before purchase.
Unfortunately I think the next biggest toy seller is Walmart.:thumbsdown:
 

Dumarest

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Toy's R'Us falling is bad news, but they were run stupidly for a long time.

I wonder who is going to fill the physical toy store space.

Amazon isn't great for browsing and useless for holding/feeling/demo before purchase.

That's a large part of why I still like real bookstores and toystores. However, I often use them as a showroom for Amazon. I've been known to snap photos of items on the shelves to remind myself to compare to Amazon prices.
 

Spinachcat

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I forgot about Walmart. I imagine they must the main toy seller offline, and compete online strongly with Amazon.
 

Bunch

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Toy's R'Us falling is bad news, but they were run stupidly for a long time.

I wonder who is going to fill the physical toy store space.

Amazon isn't great for browsing and useless for holding/feeling/demo before purchase.
You should check out Amazon's new physical stores. Built just to address this desire. Same online price but you get to see what you are buying ahead of time.
 

TristramEvans

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News is Toys R Us Canada was still profitable, didnt have the management problems of south of the border, and right now a conglomerate of toy manufacturers are looking to buy it out. So we may keep Toys R Us up here in the North.

OTOH, the heydey of ToysRUs is long since over, everytime I go in there these days I'm a mix of disappointed at the selection of action figures, and shocked at the prices for the "exclusive" sets. $80 for two action figures? I dont care how exclusive they are, that's stupid money.
 

Bunch

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What's saddest to me is the business wasn't really failing. A while back some corporate raiders arranged a leveraged buyout of the company, paid themselves off and saddled the company with a crap ton of debt. They couldn't service the debt which drove them under.
 

Malleustein

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Found this fun review of Transdimensional Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which is right up there with the similarly gonzo and inspired Mutants in Avalon as my favourite Palladium supplements.

View attachment 9401

View attachment 9402

Two of my absolute favourite books. Transdimensional TMNT is the source book my players always want when we play. The Dinosaurs were updated to After the Bomb 2nd Edition in a couple of issues of The Rifter, but they still call it "The Transdimensional stuff".

Mutants in Avalon annoys me in only one way. The rehashed Arthurian crap. Kev' can't seem to help himself whenever he turns his attention to England. I'm honestly surprised King Arther hasn't come back in Dead Reign...

...Actually, that'd be awesome.

Back to the point. If you strip out the Arthuriana, the Avalon setting is fantastic. Again, some of it saw updates for After the Bomb 2nd Edition in The Rifter, mostly the Highlands.
 

Voros

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Two of my absolute favourite books. Transdimensional TMNT is the source book my players always want when we play. The Dinosaurs were updated to After the Bomb 2nd Edition in a couple of issues of The Rifter, but they still call it "The Transdimensional stuff".

Mutants in Avalon annoys me in only one way. The rehashed Arthurian crap. Kev' can't seem to help himself whenever he turns his attention to England. I'm honestly surprised King Arther hasn't come back in Dead Reign...

...Actually, that'd be awesome.

Back to the point. If you strip out the Arthuriana, the Avalon setting is fantastic. Again, some of it saw updates for After the Bomb 2nd Edition in The Rifter, mostly the Highlands.

I dig the Arthurian nuttiness although I wish they went full anthropomorphic instead of keeping them looking so human. I didn’t realize that was a Kevin S. thing I assumed it was what drew Wallis to write it for Palladium.
 

Spinachcat

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After the Bomb is an under rated game and I agree the Arthurian aspects should be all furry knights! In fact, I prefer AtB as a full anthropomorphic setting and just toss the humans...except maybe as undead.
 

Malleustein

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I dig the Arthurian nuttiness although I wish they went full anthropomorphic instead of keeping them looking so human. I didn’t realize that was a Kevin S. thing I assumed it was what drew Wallis to write it for Palladium.

Regardless of writer, Arthurian tropes are Palladium Books' default for England. I think Mutants in Avalon is far more interesting without them, having plenty of feuding barons, courtly intrigue and class/race struggles to build a campaign around.

Not forgetting those silly Frenchmen who are too much fun to beat up and throw back into the sea! That never gets old.
 

Chris Brady

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I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE TMNT, Ninjas and Superspies and Mystic China books, personally, although the last two were factually incorrect in some places, all three were full of flavour and had Wujcik's passion for the martial arts which also inspired my love of them. I still own the books, although man, are they in BAD shape...
 

Moonglum

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First edition forever! Seriously, I love 1E Palladium fantasy and can't stand 2nd edition.

I will say, this game line has consistently excellent cover art. Almost worth it for that sake alone.
 

Ulairi

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First edition forever! Seriously, I love 1E Palladium fantasy and can't stand 2nd edition.

I will say, this game line has consistently excellent cover art. Almost worth it for that sake alone.

I like 1E Revised more than 2E Palladium Fantasy but I understand why they wanted to align the game more with the Megaversal system. I'm hoping that if the revision happens they take the entire line of games back closer to 1E Revised.


The Palladium House Artists are the best in the business. Except for that awful CG art they've used in the Rifters. That shit is tragic.
 

Gabriel

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I like the late 80s/first couple of years of the 90s era of Palladium Books. I call it the 1e Revised Era.

I like it because you can tell that Kevin Siembieda is still hungry, and there's much more care put into the products than what would come later. There's a tangible sense of interest in the material, and refining that material.

I think it would be interesting if Palladium Books made Palladium Fantasy 1e Revised, Heroes Unlimited 1e Revised, Rifts 1e, and Beyond the Supernatural 1e all available as POD. I think there's at least some possibility that POD versions of the original Rifts and BTS would sell better than the currently available editions.
 

Black Leaf

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In an ideal world I'd see someone other than Kevin take on the business side of things and leave Kevin as head writer (although not editor) of the line. Because as an ideas man, he's brilliant.

Sadly, I can't see this ever happening. Especially as for this to work you'd need someone with the authority to overrule Kevin when he's on one of his flights of fancy and he'd never agree to that.
 

Voros

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Kevib Siembieda is in The Toys that Made Us Netflix documentary series for a very brief clip. They don’t even discuss the rpg. It is a good documentary on TMNT though, especially on the comic creators who get their due.

 

The Butcher

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Kevib Siembieda is in The Toys that Made Us Netflix documentary series for a very brief clip. They don’t even discuss the rpg. It is a good documentary on TMNT though, especially on the comic creators who get their due.


Oh man, I gotta catch that.


I am still dying to run a game of TMNT that incorporates elements from Fantasy, Heroes Unlimited, and Ninjas & Superspies.

Can we get Nightbane in there? TMNT/Nightbane is just begging to happen.
 

Bunch

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Barnes & Noble is next, for the same reason.
Is Barnes and Noble heavily leveraged with debt? Because this is a photo from their RPG games section
IMG_20191211_103547-01.jpeg

It's not the haydays of RPG selection but it's not that far off. They seem to have a better pulse than a lot of the game stores I go to.
 

Baulderstone

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Is Barnes and Noble heavily leveraged with debt? Because this is a photo from their RPG games section
View attachment 13990

It's not the haydays of RPG selection but it's not that far off. They seem to have a better pulse than a lot of the game stores I go to.
After declining sales six years in a row and continuously rotating CEOs, it almost went under this summer, but it was bought by a hedge fund. I guess we'll see if they can turn it around.
 

Edgewise

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After declining sales six years in a row and continuously rotating CEOs, it almost went under this summer, but it was bought by a hedge fund. I guess we'll see if they can turn it around.
I’m sure those hedge fund managers will crack the code for selling books in the digital age. At least it wasn’t a private equity firm.
 

Bunch

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I’m sure those hedge fund managers will crack the code for selling books in the digital age. At least it wasn’t a private equity firm.
Their model isn't too far off from what I see at successful game stores. Cafe? Check. Inventory? Check. Alcohol? Nope. Game space? Nope.

I see some potential changes coming.
 

Gabriel

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Hey, remember when Unca Kev said that Robotech 2e had to be manga sized because that would get it into Barnes & Noble stores? (That and allegedly Robotech fans were spontaneously walking up to him at conventions and begging for manga sized RPG books)

I never saw any Palladium products in my local B&N. Did anyone else?
 

Dumarest

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Hey, remember when Unca Kev said that Robotech 2e had to be manga sized because that would get it into Barnes & Noble stores? (That and allegedly Robotech fans were spontaneously walking up to him at conventions and begging for manga sized RPG books)

I never saw any Palladium products in my local B&N. Did anyone else?
Not "manga-sized," whatever that means, but Palladium games are available from B&N:
 
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