Roleplayer #16, October 1989

At Last . . . Books and Bookstores!

by Steve Jackson

One of our November releases will be a little item that garners have been anticipating for a long time . . . in spite of the fact that it doesn't contain a single new rule. At long last, we're publishing a hardback edition of the GURPS Basic Set.

This is a milestone, not just for the system, but for the company. We've never had a hardback product before. But that certainly seems to be the way the hobby is moving. And a hardback book certainly lasts longer, and looks and feels more "real," too.

And, speaking of milestones . . . As of October, the Basic Set and a couple of worldbooks – probably GURPS Conan and GURPS Wild Cards – will be in Waldenbooks on a test basis. If they go well, Waldenbooks will pick up a large part of the line! This could be very important to SJ Games; if we're in Waldenbooks, we can significantly increase our press runs. Maybe.

If the only result is that our existing customers buy the games at bookstores instead of game stores, our sales don't increase . . . and we're hurt, because anything that injures independent game retailers is bad for the hobby.

But if, as we hope, the book trade brings in new customers, it will help everybody – even the game retailers – because no bookstore can carry a full line of games, and the new garners will soon become game-store customers. So everybody wins.

Anyway, check your local Waldenbooks for our games next month, and wish us luck. If the test products sell out, it could be very good news for SJ Games. Which will let us do more GURPS (and other) material . . . which I hope is good news for you.

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