One thing he frequently said with regards to this competition was, "A rising tide lifts all boats."
Now we're all loosely associated with another industry that seemingly has a lot of competition, but I like to think, "Does it really?" Sure, if you're at a game convention wandering the dealer hall and you only have $X to spend, there is going to be competition for said dollars.
Overall though, I think as gamers we tend to prefer one system (or three), but most of us buy a lot of stuff outside of our norm and it isn't uncommon to pick up new stuff to check it out and maybe beg, borrow, or steal it for our home game. Maybe I'm wrong, or this is more a behavior for us OSR types........but I think I'm closer to the truth than not.
Now I do not play the current edition of D&D and generally don't care about it. I mean I have actually purchased it, but IIRC I gave it away to a buddy's kid so they could game at school with their friends. I recall having to get it at the FLGS, which I'm generally happy to support. The thing is, as I also see things, the current edition of D&D is pretty much a gateway RPG drug, which is an inside joke.....
.....so imagine my surprise when I was walking through my local Walmart and I saw this gem:
OK, big freaking deal...I saw a lame-assed cookbook...actually is it lame? I have no *actual* clue as I haven't picked it up and looked at it. Honestly I already have too many cookbooks as it is, so one more...yeah, not something I need to have, and if I don't pick it up, I can't decide it is another cookbook I *have* to have collecting dust next to the others....
.....ok, I might have a problem, but whatever....don't judge me.
Seriously? Of course this Monster Manual was upside down, but still......what else can I find? I'm pretty sure the MM was in the wrong spot, especially since I doubt it was $10.
It really didn't take me long to find the PHB and DMG, but then I stumbled across what looked like a hardbound adventure campaign book. Really not something I'm interested in, especially at that price point.
The cool thing is that I found these on the shelves pretty much in the middle of nowhere. I'd have killed to be able to get these books at the local store back in my day! Of course I remember getting the Magenta Box at pretty much any Waldenbooks cheaply enough we bought them just to take the dice out, ditching the rest. Sounds great, but the nearest Waldenbooks was a couple counties away so not as cool & convenient as it sounds.