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Friday, March 11, 2016

TableTopLibrary.com Goes Live - PDF and Print - Competition is Good!

I first heard about TableTopLibrary last month but had to keep my yap shut. I'm happy that OBS will finally have some competition and as publishers will retain 75% of the sale price of their PDF goods at TTL (at OBS, it's 65% or 70%), it will hopefully spur more quality self publishing - Your Humble Barkeep



PRESS RELEASE

Kobold Press, Frog God Games, Troll Lord Games, Green Ronin, Rite Publishing, Super Genius Games, Expeditious Retreat Games, Hero Games, Rogue Comet, Metallic Dice Games, Pacesetter Games and Simulations, Eldritch Enterprises, Far Future Enterprises and TableTopLibrary.com

March 10, 2016

Kobold Press, Frog God Games, Troll Lord Games, Green Ronin, Hero Games, Rogue Comet, Pacesetter Games and Simulations, Eldritch Enterprises, Far Future Enterprises and TableTopLibrary.com are jointly announcing that, effective immediately, our companies will all be offering our Fifth Edition, Pathfinder, Traveller, OSR, Hero System, Fate, and other products through a new RPG download store called TableTopLibrary, as a one-stop shop for OGL Fifth Edition products. TableTopLibrary, website https://tabletoplibrary.com/ is a newly-formed online store for RPG books and pdfs designed to offer both electronic versions and hard copy versions of books produced by your favorite publishers. TabletopLibrary will also offer a full slate of products and resources for other role-playing games, including Pathfinder and OSR-games. All of us will continue our own websites and stores, but TableTopLibrary offers a place to draw all these products together in one place for convenience.

At this time, by coming together as a consortium, we can offer the high-quality products we pride ourselves on; provide a one-stop shopping spot with outstanding customer service; and allow  a better experience for publishers, and more importantly, for customers . Centralized electronic book fulfillment, kickstarter fulfillment, and single-location warehousing will improve our delivery speed, accuracy, and customer service in the RPG download market.

Our reasons for setting up a consortium at this time include (1) each partner retains ownership and editorial control over the individual campaign worlds and other “intellectual property” that our fans have known and loved for years; (2) our desire to offer physically higher-quality printing, paper quality, and binding than print on demand outlets offer; and (3) the desire to continue drawing upon and increasing the vast resources of Open Game Content as opposed to other alternatives.

TableTopLibrary is committed to offering a deep and broad-based marketplace of Fifth Edition products, superior to any other online store, as well as many other game system products. We are joined in a partnership of many large publishers in this project, and expect many more to join us as time goes on. TableTopLibrary will be issuing its own press release soon, describing the advantages and the procedures involved in joining.

You can continue buying products directly from each of us, as always. But if you want to browse the whole library of Fifth Edition and other products produced under the Open Game License over the years, we’re letting you know that there’s a new online game store in town.

Check out TableTopLibrary at TableTopLibrary.com - The Leading Source for RPGs and watch us grow! We think you’ll be impressed.

27 comments:

  1. Not to be the naysayer, but will these guys offer any big advantage over OBS or the Paizo store, aside from price competetion? I tend to stick with RPGNow due to past satisfaction and the fact I trust them with my CC info, so I might wait a bit before actually buying from TTL to make sure it's all in order.

    The one bit from the press release you quote that caught my eye is that they are "committed to offering a deep and broad-based marketplace of Fifth Edition products, superior to any other online store." That just seems unlikely given the recent opening of the DMs Guild section at OBS, and the fact that actual DMs Guild product (the stuff with FR references allowed) is limited to the official site. Are they hoping to pick up some of the 5e OGL publishers with a better profit share model?

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    1. Actually, OBS has the CC problem, what was it? Early last year? I use Paypal at OBS (also an option at TTL) so I wasn't effected.

      From what I understand (having spoken to Bill Webb directly on the matter) the intention is to also sell physical product like dice and such, something you can't get at a POD store.

      As for the 5e angle? No idea.

      Maybe I DO need to do a series of interviews here at The Tavern. There are questions that could use answers ;)

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    2. The credit cards are handled through Shopify, a major e-commerce provider, not through TTL, so we've got professional security on the CC information. I'm not sure we even see the data.

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    3. As to what goes on in terms of the 5th Edition D&D market, that's a bit of a complicated answer, and I don't want to say anything negative about the DM Guild. In a nutshell, though, the DM Guild has zero interest for serious publishers due to the nature of the license to use it. That's why so many major publishers signed on to TTL immediately. It's not primarily about price, it's about intellectual property, although OBS taking a 50% slice of 5e D&D is a factor.

      TTL hopes to evolve the OGL equivalent of the DM Guild marketplace. As time goes on, I think that publishers who start building a reputation on DM Guild will start taking a look at the OGL as a better long-term alternative. Because reasons.

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    4. At first glance, I will commend TTL on a much cleaner and intuitive layout than OBS, much easier to browse specific systems. That's due in part, of course, to the sheer size of OBS's catalog, but I still consider it a plus for TTL.

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    5. @Tenkar, I hadn't heard about CC breaches at OBS, so I guess I wasn't affected :P I've had a positive experience with them over the last 8 years or so, no complaints beyond the sheer bulk of the catalog and the difficulty browsing system categories. Searching a specific product or publisher is fine, but a search for, say "swords & wizardy" always seems to end up both leaving out some relevant products and including stuff that isn't relevant.

      @Matt thanks for the info re: CC handling, definitely makes me more inclined to make a purchase.

      As far as DMs Guild, I neither play 5e or use FR to any real degree, so I have no plans to even browse their offerings on a regular basis.

      As I pointed out in the previous comment, I'm impressed by the clean, uncluttered layout and ease of browsing on TTL, so I'll definitely add it to my list of sites to check for new OSR stuff. I definitely agree that competition is a good thing. Hope the site grows and succeeds.

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    6. Any place can have the issues the OBS had. Just not sure I need yet another digital store in my life.

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  2. It would be nice to know if they'll have a European outlet for their physical goodies as international shipping s.

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  3. Well said Matt! Also, TTL will let publishers sell things like box sets, posters, 5.5x8.5" booklets, modules with detachable covers, etc.

    OBS is strictly digital or POD, whereas TTL will warehouse and distribute products vendors create through traditional print methods, giving you more options and (in some cases) higher quality due to using traditional, non-POD print methods.

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    1. In addition, as far as I could tell when I investigated DMs Guild and the 5e OGL stuff on OBS, there's no POD option for any of it. POD or physical fulfillment of products on TTL seems to be one of the 'big advantages' I originally asked about.

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    2. Posters, cards, 5.5x8.5" booklets, and screens are offered by OBS. They also have a few oddball physical items (like Hammerdog's WGGMS). Obviously Paizo has far more, and OBS is more focused on the virtual library and PoD side of things.

      That said, the more the merrier, and I wish the best for them. It all benefits everybody, and even a handful of places seems... limited.

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    3. (Also, a Public/Private key system to authenticate works everywhere so that you can get books you've bought one place everywhere else would be nice... but it would take somebody who understands that kind of system to implement and convince at least two big names to use it.)

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    4. OBS posters and booklet formats have limitations that won't work for me. I want to do 18x24" and 24x36" posters -- they can't do either of those sizes as best I can tell. I want to do 48+ page saddle stitched booklets like some of the Traveller formats -- they only do perfect binding for those page counts. So OBS definitely has it strengths but also has some limitations. :-)

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  4. If they also do print as well as pdf I'm in. The only thing I regret is the huge library of stuff I already have with OBS. Still if it's better with TTL for "you guys" the it's a bullet I can bear. It's not like I'll lose that stuff.

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    1. We can warehouse/sell/ship print products, and Troll Lords offers a discount to TTL members for softcovers, but we don't have an actual POD option. With the way we're currently set up, we don't have the ability to batch up order details into a format that LightningSource can use. That may come later, but it will require a fairly major change in the site's background structure.

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    2. If there's no PoD option, then what are you warehousing, selling, and shipping?

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    3. I'm curious like Venger. Matt, are you acquiring physical print runs of items from print runs and then acting as a distributor and on the Kickstarter fulfillment side of things?

      Are you working with people in and around the Washington state area, I think that's where TTL is from, to get print runs handled or are publishers having their print runs shipped to you? I'm curious about the back end process for Physical goods and how you're handling it?

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    4. I'm not acquiring anything. What are you on about?

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  5. I wish there was something new for me to buy!

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  6. My Curse of the White Mine Module can only be had here in PDF. Unless you were in on the Kickstarter, this is it. It won't be up at other sites.
    i might get to it on my website... eventually, but this is it.
    Also it's the only place I put any of my illustrations out for purchase as "Stock Art".

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  7. I had a look at this, researched a little, and was impressed enough that I put my new DCC adventure up there (I had put it up on OBS only yesterday). I like having more than one outlet. The more the merrier!

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  8. Cool beans. Neat to have another place for Tim to sell his Manors.

    Happy Weekend, Tenkar.

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  9. An increased number of options always results in better products and services for the consumer. That's Business 101, and the main reason I don't care what system or edition you play or what smartphone you use. :)

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  10. This sounds like a great resource, esp for new entries.

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  11. As a very new and very-very small publisher, the 5E-material exclusivity is something stopping me from selling my products on Tabletop Library. I would be willing to break my exclusivity with DriveThruRPG (I haven't used DM's Guild so far), but not just to sign an exclusive deal with another merchant. If they want to attract small publishers I'm not sure an exclusive deal is the way to go.

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