I so much enjoyed writing my first “for sale” RPG supplement Take On Magic Items that I decided to write another one – Take On Establishments [purchase at DriveThruRPG].
I've been pleasantly surprised by the support I've received on my first offering. I had a 3 month sales goal of 20 copies and have sold 25 copies, all before you could purchase Dungeon World.
I recognize some of the people – thank you all – may well have purchased Take On Magic Items out of a sense of “obligation” that may not continue beyond my freshman offering and that is quite alright.
Take On Establishments came about as a brainstorm with my family. We were coming up with names of buildings, and what might be found there. I decided there was something in it, and began work.
Organizationally each Establishment/Location has the following elements:
- Sight, Sound, and Smell - a quickly scannable section to set the tone for the establishment.
- Person - a person, with a quick description, instinct, and some moves.
- Location Move - A “when you do X, Roll+STAT…” move to help a GM kickstart something from that location.
There isn't any explicit read aloud text, instead opting for scan-ability. I also wasn't looking to create a specific village, but instead wanted to provide modular locations, drop them in the village where you characters are at.
I have also found the entire process of publication and pricing fascinating.
I'm using iBooks Author to generate the PDFs. Its available on my computer and is free. I had originally thought about publishing to iTunes, but my initial foray suggested that I would need an ISBN to sell the book.
So I opted to sell via DriveThruRPG. They take a cut of the proceeds and I don't have to roll my own shopping cart and payment processor.
At one point, I thought about writing my own web application, but frankly, I do that for my day job, and I'd rather let Hobby Jeremy come out and play.
I spent a lot of time hashing out the appropriate price, considering $0.99, $1.49, $1.99, and $2.49. Eventually I settled on the highest price, in part because I was expecting to sell about 20 regardless of price – after all how many Dungeon World players are there? I based my assumption on Kickstarter's 2455 backers .
Of course I wonder how many sales I might have if I were to reduce the price to $0.99. Would the volume make-up for it? I guess I could run a sale and find out.
I really anguished about pricing Take On Establishments, as I don't think it is “as exciting” as Take On Magic Items. In fact, on the first day, I kept making updates to the price – I didn't know that the item had become published while I was doing these updates.