ICv2 has once again posted its list of role-playing game sales for the summer of 2013 and it should be no surprise that Pathfinder continues to dominate while 4th Edition Dungeons & Dragons slips further down the list. The chart reflects interviews with distributors, retailers and manufacturers (not actual sales data).
- Pathfinder (Paizo Publishing)
- Star Wars (Fantasy Flight Games)
- Dungeons & Dragons (Wizards of the Coast)
- Iron Kingdoms (Privateer Press)
- Fate Core System (Evil Hat Productions)
Because these interviews only happen in the traditional distribution chain of brick-and-mortar stores, it's difficult to tell the relative impact of massively successful Kickstarters like Numenera. The top four slots tend to be divided up by the largest companies still publishing print books -- Paizo, FFG, WOTC, and Privateer Press. It is interesting that Iron Kingdoms is once again on the rise as a RPG, but it might be that fewer role-playing games are being published so that it doesn't take much to enter the fourth spot. The fifth spot tends to reflect the popularity of gaming trends, with Fate on the rise.
Dungeons & Dragons will continue to slip until 5th Edition is released. Scott Thorne at ICv2 believes it will be in 2014, which coincides with the 40th anniversary of Dungeons & Dragons:
The recent announcement by Wizards of the Coast that the first release for Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition, or D&D Next as the company keeps calling it, Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle, would only be available for pre-order for sale at this year's Gen-Con, got me thinking about what to expect when D&D 5th Edition, or Next, finally releases, probably in 2014.
I'm inclined to agree, given the buildup by WOTC, the conclusion of the open playtest, and the curious behavior by former WOTC employees who seem to be gearing up to support the new edition of the game.
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