So how well is MRQ2 selling anyway?

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ThatGuy
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Postby ThatGuy » Sun May 15, 2011 8:52 am

I have to say I agree with the layout criticism. Maybe with the exception on the leather covers, which I think are classy and nice. If the book when opened had the same type of eye candy that Pathfinder or Exalted had- I think it would appeal to more folks that browse for books.

The rules and writing is top notch. The artwork and layout- not so much.

Almost as important to me with artwork is just consistency- 2, 3 artists tops to do all of the art work so that you get a feeling for the vibe being communicated.

And I know it's easier to say as a consumer than to gamble on as a publisher, but full color is nice too.
Let's say, just for argument's sake, you're right...
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Postby Cassius » Sun May 15, 2011 9:38 am

msprange wrote: The game has not quite met those goals. The Glorantha line, especially, is weak, selling no better than an own brew line such as Wraith Recon and Spellcom. There are plenty of Gloranthaphiles out there, of course, but I think they are sticking firmly with the 3rd Age. Given the choice between publishing a Glorantha book or developing our own IP (which may be used later in other areas), the choice is very difficult to justify the former.

The Abiding Book is a good example. If we had not produced a limited edition version that paid for the print run in itself, we might not have been able to produce the book at all... That makes us a little gunshy about Glorantha.

On the other side of the coin, Glorantha has always been seen as impenetrable by those who do not already know about it...
Iv been quite afraid of this for a while and can quite understand how you guys may now be shying away from publishing anything else.

So I have 2 questions for you.

Is it actually still likely that the 2 major books that where to be released, the EWF book and Races of Glorantha 2 are gonna be released at some point or should I start drawing up my own rules for Aldryami and Mostali?

Given that its obviously a lot more popular is it totally impossible that you could do a deal to publish 3rd age material? Reason I ask is whilst im capable of running the 3rd age without published from you guys as iv got a shelf full of stuff I can convert if this helped the line grow id like it to happen. MRQ2 is quite simply the best Glorantha ruleset out there imo and id hate for it to just fade away
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Postby Jujitsudave » Sun May 15, 2011 7:15 pm

I think this is further evidence that distance should be created between the Runequest system and Glorantha. Glorantha has a very devoted fanbase and it should be supported. It's not a bad series, but honestly people that are unfamiliar with it can easily be turned off by the Glorantha specific references in the core manual. The magic system and the relationships with "cults" being a prime example. Although it is good to support Glorantha, it ought to be cut back to support more generalized materials. I'd love to see:
-A book based on RuneQuest Magic. This could be completely devoted to developing magic systems and styles for multiple genres and setting. One section for further expanding Glorantha style magic, another for low magic/historical, another for oriental/far eastern magic, etc.
-More sourcebooks for running historical campaigns. Vikings could not have been done any better. Truly outstanding.
-Dragon Age. Steal that crap from Green Ronin. Nuff said.
-Premade adventure packs for Vikings and Deus Vult.
-Lone Wolf for MRQII.
-A combat sourcebook for more combat options, new equipment, professions, variant rules and of course, new CMs.

Just a thought.
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Postby DamonJynx » Mon May 16, 2011 3:21 am

I suppose from a publishing view point, if you have a budget for new RPG's and or supplements of say $100k, you're going to want sales (at wholesale prices) of $150k +. If your core line, based on market research, forum chatter and previous sales indicates the amount returned would be significantly less, then obviously you wouldn't be supporting the core line. You'd support lines that are selling well with your $100k.

I agree, the RQ rule set - removed of all setting specific material should be released in a manner similar to BRP. Sell it as THE premier Fantasy, Swords and Sorcery rule set, written for gamers by gamers. Perhaps, license it in a similar fashion to what D&D D20 did and allow 3rd Party Publishers to produce their own settings and adventures. Obviously, material for Mongoose's IP or licensed product (EC series for example) is another issue altogether - one that could be addressed in the SRD.

I don't know how to do it, but there must be a way of getting RQ to the masses. Goodman Games are releasing the DCC RPG based on the D&D 3.5 engine. Their aim is to create an old-school gaming feel with modern rules firmly based on the fiction recommended by G Gygax and his 2nd Ed Dm Guide, Appendix N. From what I've read of that fiction (and I admit, it's not a lot) RQ already meets those goals, so surely there is a market out there.
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master of reality
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Postby master of reality » Mon May 16, 2011 4:34 am

Mikko Leho wrote:
msprange wrote:The production values are sky high, with a leather cover that most companies would use for limited editions, and it looks great on a shelf!
I have to disagree you there, while the content of RQ2 is solid, the looks leave much to be desired at least when compared to other RPGs out there today. RQ2 looks like an ugly duckling compared to the likes of Pathfinder, Legend of the Five Rings, Eclipse Phase, Shadowrun etc. It does not really have to do with colors or the lack of thereof but more with consistent style. For instance Fantasy Craft featured only black and white illustrations, but they were mostly done in the same style and with class. With RQ2 you get the feeling of different illustrators pieced together with no direction.
I like the leather bound cover. Would it sell better if it had a snazzy color cover? Who knows. I like the color covers for the source books, but leather bound covers for core books are classy. A picture of my copy of the core book appears at http://rpggeek.com/rpgitem/65531/runequest-ii
Unfortunately, it looks a little dark on that page, but if you click on it to enlarge it, it looks pretty nice. In fact, most of the images of RuneQuest 2 books posted on rpggeek.com are mine. So I'm doing what I can to spread the word outside of this forum.
I'm overdue for some RuneQuest purchases. I was going to buy the Abiding Book, but was handed a notice to vacate my apartment recently. I've just now moved into a new (and better) apartment (with a gaming room!), but I'm still in the process of getting caught up financially. Security deposits where I live are fairly high, and my previous landlord is not being very cooperative about returning my deposit for the old place. After my next paycheck, however, I'll be in a better position to indulge in some new Mongoose stuff.
Last Christmas, I bought two core books for some friends. We've been too busy to play, but in the next month we should be able to make time.
They like the MRQ2 system, but so far seem a bit non-plussed by Glorantha. They have, however, expressed a willingness to try this setting if I'm the GM. One of those friends is a huge Elric fan, and has volunteered to be GM for that setting. I also bought the Second Age Glorantha source book for another long time gaming friend, but he still espouses a preference for Third Age Glorantha. Maybe as he reads more about the Second Age, he'll develop a taste for it. I used to be more inclined towards Third Age, but after reading several of the source books (Glorantha core book, Races Vol 1, Blood of Orlanth, Jrustela, etc.) I've come to embrace the Second Age as my default setting.
All four of us are in our early to mid-forties and finally make enough money to buy high quality role playing books with nice leather covers. Unfortunately, we now have less time to play than we did in our twenties, but we are trying to change that.
Last edited by master of reality on Mon May 16, 2011 5:50 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby DamonJynx » Mon May 16, 2011 5:00 am

master of reality wrote:All four of us are in our early to mid-forties and finally make enough money to buy high quality role playing books with nice leather covers. Unfortunately, we now have less time to play than we did in our twenties, but we are trying to change that.
I know what you mean. I'm in the same boat.

I don't buy rulebooks based on their appearance, I buy them to use what's inside. That being said, decent layout and art would sway me if I were fence sitting with regards to a purchase.

Take the Save Worlds Explorers edition: Soft Cover, A5 size, colour, nice art and the layout isn't bad 10 bucks. Now, who couldn't afford that? Just drop a Pizza or 2! True it has a "pulpy' feel, but that's the kind of game I like. I dislike the rules generally speaking as they don't allow for much variation, i.e. 1 dice roll to hit, no special moves or any real tactical stuff, well not that I saw at any rate. You can of course add as much description as you like and I believe as you progress you can get Edges and Taints to flavour things up, but I like RQ2.
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master of reality
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Postby master of reality » Mon May 16, 2011 7:12 am

Cassius wrote:
msprange wrote: The game has not quite met those goals. The Glorantha line, especially, is weak, selling no better than an own brew line such as Wraith Recon and Spellcom. There are plenty of Gloranthaphiles out there, of course, but I think they are sticking firmly with the 3rd Age. Given the choice between publishing a Glorantha book or developing our own IP (which may be used later in other areas), the choice is very difficult to justify the former.

The Abiding Book is a good example. If we had not produced a limited edition version that paid for the print run in itself, we might not have been able to produce the book at all... That makes us a little gunshy about Glorantha.

On the other side of the coin, Glorantha has always been seen as impenetrable by those who do not already know about it...
Iv been quite afraid of this for a while and can quite understand how you guys may now be shying away from publishing anything else.

So I have 2 questions for you.

Is it actually still likely that the 2 major books that where to be released, the EWF book and Races of Glorantha 2 are gonna be released at some point or should I start drawing up my own rules for Aldryami and Mostali?

Given that its obviously a lot more popular is it totally impossible that you could do a deal to publish 3rd age material? Reason I ask is whilst im capable of running the 3rd age without published from you guys as iv got a shelf full of stuff I can convert if this helped the line grow id like it to happen. MRQ2 is quite simply the best Glorantha ruleset out there imo and id hate for it to just fade away
Races of Glorantha Vol. 2 and the EWF book would definitely round out the the Second Age Glorantha setting, providing a bit of closure before Mongoose focuses on other settings. Matt, I will order a couple of copies of the Abiding Book by the end of the month.

I don't whether Third Age Glorantha books would sell that much better than Second Age books since a lot of Third Age material is already out there.
I wouldn't be surprised if the Elric setting is currently selling better than the Second Age setting.
A Conan setting might boost the popularity of MRQ2.
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Postby Cassius » Mon May 16, 2011 7:48 am

master of reality wrote: I don't whether Third Age Glorantha books would sell that much better than Second Age books since a lot of Third Age material is already out there.
I wouldn't be surprised if the Elric setting is currently selling better than the Second Age setting.
A Conan setting might boost the popularity of MRQ2.
Moon Design seem to be doing fine with it and it has traditionally sold well enough. And it would probably sell well if they brought out some books about parts of the 3rd age that have traditionally not been covered in much detail (How cool would a game set around the Kingdom of War or 3rd Age Pameltela be?)

I also think you have a fair amount of people who know the 3rd age and are sticking with it and would be willing to buy new books for it for the new ruleset but are unwilling to consider the 2nd age at all. Just like your friend who would probably not have needed your convincing if MRQ2 was a 3rd age game
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Some thoughts...

Postby drdentista » Mon May 16, 2011 8:14 am

I've loved RQ and Glorantha since I first got it in -83. Since then I've bought lots of stuff for the game. As it were, actual play time has been scarce, since my gaming buddies always preferred the D&D/AD&D gaming style. Also, I think that Glorantha is quite forbidding for newcomers, since it's so specific and so rich in history and myths. I agree that MRQ2 has to have a more "generic" fantasy alternative to be able to lure over the D&D/Pathfinder crew. Starting with MRQ1 (which was good, but that I had mixed feelings about) my interest in fantasy gaming came back (haven't played in that genre since the 80s), and currently I'm working on a campaign in 2nd age Ralios/Karia. Problem is TIME. I'm in my early 40s, single father with 2 kids, have a time consuming work (and so are my players). My "own time" is severely restricted, so what I need is pre-made adventures and scenarios that can be read through and played straight out of the box. The background and stuff are nice for reading, but for playing - "modules" that doesn't need x hours of prep time...
D&D and it's descendants may have done many things wrong, but think of it - what games have been really popular? D&D and CoC. And they had just that - pre-made adventures. I want to play the game, and with little time at hand, easy-to start adventures and scenarios are gold.
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Postby drdentista » Mon May 16, 2011 8:19 am

Cassius wrote:
master of reality wrote: I don't whether Third Age Glorantha books would sell that much better than Second Age books since a lot of Third Age material is already out there.
I wouldn't be surprised if the Elric setting is currently selling better than the Second Age setting.
A Conan setting might boost the popularity of MRQ2.
Moon Design seem to be doing fine with it and it has traditionally sold well enough. And it would probably sell well if they brought out some books about parts of the 3rd age that have traditionally not been covered in much detail (How cool would a game set around the Kingdom of War or 3rd Age Pameltela be?)

I also think you have a fair amount of people who know the 3rd age and are sticking with it and would be willing to buy new books for it for the new ruleset but are unwilling to consider the 2nd age at all. Just like your friend who would probably not have needed your convincing if MRQ2 was a 3rd age game
I would state the opposite - I really prefer the 2nd age. In the beginning, I admit it felt a little "weird" (What! - No Lunar Empire..."), but I think that the 2nd age gives a much richer and freer perspective. I miss Chaos though, so in my Glorantha chaos doesn't sleep. At all...;-)
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Postby duncan_disorderly » Mon May 16, 2011 8:49 am

Cassius wrote: Given that its obviously a lot more popular is it totally impossible that you could do a deal to publish 3rd age material?
master of reality wrote: I don't whether Third Age Glorantha books would sell that much better than Second Age books since a lot of Third Age material is already out there.
Moon Design seem to be doing fine with it and it has traditionally sold well enough. And it would probably sell well if they brought out some books about parts of the 3rd age that have traditionally not been covered in much detail (How cool would a game set around the Kingdom of War or 3rd Age Pameltela be?)
While it's not totally impossible that Mongoose could do a deal to publish 3rd age material, it is unlikely. Greg Stafford has given Moon Design the 3rd age licence and Mongoose the 2nd age. Giving any other company a share of those licences (including sharing the licences between Moon Design & Mongoose) would necessarily impact on those original licences.

From what has been said elsewhere, although there seems to be a lot of interest in the more unexplored areas of Glorantha, it is not necessarily reflected in the sales, which are always much stronger for Dragon Pass/Orlanthi material. The "danger" with, for instance, a 3rd age Pameltela book is that people who don't already follow Glorantha will see it as "Another Glorantha Book" and ignore it because they consider the setting to be "too complicated" or "requiring too many books already", while many of those who do play Gloranthan games will say "OK, but that books not relevant to my ongoing Dragon Pass/Pavis/etc campaign, so I'll pass..." This is why D101 Games is publishing "The Book of Glorious Joy" (material originally written for "Lords of the West")
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Postby Newtus » Mon May 16, 2011 9:54 am

Duncan what you say in your post that is speculative and just plain wrong with regards to the reality of Gloranthan publishing. I'm not going to speak for others here, but I am going set the record straight on regarding the following.
duncan_disorderly wrote:This is why D101 Games is publishing "The Book of Glorious Joy" (material originally written for "Lords of the West")
When Moon Design took over publishing HeroQuest from Issaries, there was the option to pick up books that were in development for HQ at the time of the transfer. Jamie's Lords of the West series was one of those books that Moon Designs, for reasons I'm not going to go into here, decided not to publish. Moon Design has very graciously allowed me (and another Gloranthan publisher, who has yet to announce their plans) to publish this immense body of work.

It was not because they are neglecting the West (or any other region of Glorantha). Yes there was an initial focus on Sartar and the next books up are Pavis & The Big Rubble, because MD had to focus on these areas to establish themselves as business and also because us fans expect these books to be first in the release schedule. The next release after Pavis & The Big Rubble books is the Guide to Glorantha which covers the whole of the world, in considerable detail, including the West.
Regards

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Postby PhilHibbs » Mon May 16, 2011 11:37 am

I think Duncan is probably right. Gloranthan publishers have struggled since they moved away from RuneQuest in Dragon Pass. HeroQuest is nowhere near as popular as RuneQuest was, and neither is MRQ. Around 2% of the roleplaying shelf space in my FLGS is MRQ, and less than 1% is HQ. Sonething went wrong, and I think Duncan is right. Be my guest and prove him wrong, I hope BoGJ is successful, but can you point to any other non-Dragon-Pass-and-Prax successes?
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Postby Newtus » Mon May 16, 2011 11:47 am

No he is categorically wrong. I've based what I've said upon discussions with Jeff Richard from Moon Designs who knows from sales both current and past how 'Glorantha is doing', not from idle speculation. I'm not going into any more detail, because that's for Jeff to say ;)
Regards

;O)Newt

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Postby danskmacabre » Mon May 16, 2011 12:17 pm

I was tentetively looking at getting GLorantha to use with my Son.
He loves MRQ2 and enjoyed playing the Elric game, but he also loves playing elves and dwarves etc etc...
So I ended up just running a sort of "stock FRP world" version of the yound kingdoms with Elves, dwarves etc, which works well for him.
When I get a regular adult group together I'll run Elric as written for the most part.

The reason I said all that is when I started looking at Glorantha, I got confused which book a starting GM should get. It just isn't very clear.
After I asked on here about it I was told there's a couple of different ages (correct me if I'm wrong).
was also told if I wanted to use additional races such as Ducks and stuff (which I thought were core races) I would need to buy another book.
At that point it was just all too much work and felt like I was going to have to buy lots of books to run Glorantha.
IMO opinion, speaking as someone who still knows little about Glorantha, if I can't buy one world book that offers the core races (and I consider Ducks to be core, I'm sure they were many years ago when I played RQ) and clearly lays out the basics then I just get scared off and get something else.

I need as a starting GM for a gameworld to have the basic information with a starting area laid out for me, preferably with a start scenario to help me get the mood right.
Glorantha just doesn't do that for me and I'm not new to RPGs, I've been playing and running RPGs since the early 80s.
I've run, Rolemaster, stormbringer, Spacemaster, Hawkmoon, PAthfinder, HARP, CoC many other games.
I've used various published fantasy gameworlds and the "boxed set" or main worldbooks have been written assuming the GM knows nothing about the world.
Now I haven't actually read any of the books for Glorantha, but I STILL don't know as a starting gm for Glorantha where to start.
Which book? Why do I get the feeling I have to buy multiple books if I wnat to just get a start running Glorantha?
It just turns me off using the setting.
I may have it all wrong, but these are my first impressions and if I feel that way and I want Mongoose to do well, you can be sure those who are more casual about it have a good chance of feeling the same way.
I just find Glorantha not approachable as a new GM to the setting.
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Postby RosenMcStern » Mon May 16, 2011 12:27 pm

Back in the days, the core book and Cults of Prax were enough to run a game. But things have changed.

For my first Glorantha game, I stuck to Trollpak and Haunted Ruins and everything went fine. Single culture (race), lots of available stuff, lots of possibilities. Later, with a deeper understanding of the setting, we expanded the game to encompass all the rest.
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Postby PhilHibbs » Mon May 16, 2011 12:34 pm

Newtus wrote:No he is categorically wrong. I've based what I've said upon discussions with Jeff Richard from Moon Designs who knows from sales both current and past how 'Glorantha is doing', not from idle speculation. I'm not going into any more detail, because that's for Jeff to say ;)
So is my FLGS a poor indicator? The other game store that I've been to recently had no MRQ2 or HeroQuest stuff.
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Postby Cassius » Mon May 16, 2011 12:35 pm

danskmacabre wrote:*snip*
Basically you need Glorantha the 2nd Age and Cults of Glorantha. And even then you can do without cults as the basic book contains some info on gods and there cults.

Though your right you wouldnt get races. But then I dont see that as a problem as the human cultures are so diverse they should provide most of what you need. The Gloranthan elder races tend to be hyper specialised and better suited to NPCs then PCs and so in general they are often not needed. So you keep in mind Glorantha puts the effort other games would have put into another race into diverse human cultures instead.
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Postby Da Boss » Mon May 16, 2011 12:43 pm

I have to agree that the whilst the leather cover is nicely done - you certainly pay highly for that priverlage when compared to other core rulebooks I have recently purchased Rogue Trader, BRP, Deathwatch,

I would certainly have prefered more content, the authors have previously stated they were constrained by space and as the core book is less than 200 pages - that is a shame.

Art work ranges from very nice to very basic and seems to lack a theme and again is jarring in that its all B/W - again look at CthulhuTech, Dark Heresy line etc.

The stat layout for creatures in all of the RQ books I have (Core, Elric, Vikings) is really bad - taking up much more room that it needs - especially in a book "short of space".

I have never got Glorantha myself in my decades of rpging - but the opposite is true of Elric. Vikings was amost impressive supplement at a appropriate cost.

IMO I think the difficulty is at present RQII is just not a generic fantasy book - there are too many assumptions on the style of play and the way the world will work and inteact for that - but its not a book totally based on the RQ core universe.

I thikn the former would have been better...................
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Postby DamonJynx » Mon May 16, 2011 1:03 pm

Apart from the MRQ2 core rule book and what I've gleaned from Monster Coliseum, and other 'core' releases I've not read anything about Glorantha. It seems to me a little bit like D&D's Forgotten Realms setting; a world with a long history, world shattering events and volumes written about it. Not to mention a very loyal and enthusiastic fan base, regardless of version. If Mongoose want the 2nd Age to sell, they need to to promote it more heavily and remove the 'elitist' type of tag it has.

Regarding the future for MRQ, Dr Dentista and a number of other posters, myself included, feel very strongly that Mongoose doesn't need another setting, but more support for its current settings/games in the way of scenarios. We have Glorantha, the Eternal Champion line whose flagship Elric, is freakin brilliant and Wraith Recon. Let's develop those before we start playing around with more settings with no damn adventures!

Goodman Games, not to mention D&D, Pathfinder, Chaosium (CoC) support their products with adventures! For crying out loud, Goodmans DCC line is such good business for them, they're developing their own freakin RPG for it! Try and convince me that line of product isn't selling!Tthey wouldn't be doing an RPG if it wasn't. I'd really like to have some inside info on the breakdown of sales x volume and sales x GP for Goodman, D&D and Pathfinder on adventure vs rules and supplements.

D&D are focusing mainly on FR and Eberron, Pathfinder - Golarion, Goodman games Aerth (think of Gygax's Oerth for the Greyhawk setting)
This is something that is not happening with MRQ. And IMNSHO, this may very well cause the downfall of this excellent game. Lets have support in the form of adventures for beginning adventurers, seasoned, veteran and so forth. If Mongoose pumped out softcover 30-40 page scenarios for their 3 lines, I'd buy the Elric ones without doubt and I'd probably buy the others for their maps and scenario ideas if not the settings themselves.
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