55 thoughts on “So what is your guys take on people selling DW classes for 1-2 bucks online?”

  1. I think that when someone puts their effort into making something, it’s totally cool with me if they want to charge money for it. If they want to give it away for free, that’s great too. If it seems really cool, I’ll totally pay a buck or two for something I think I’ll use.

  2. Mixed. I’ve actually paid for most of them, and the average quality is lower than the average quality of some of the playbooks being released for free.

    I think people should be able to charge for their own hard work. I feel its wrong when people charge for unfinished rubbish.

  3. I think it’s also a bit to early to know how a real good Playbook has to look, what works and what doesn’t work. There is some experience to be gained from Apocalypse World but the Playbook are much much tighter. 

    The most things i see right now seem to be “Like X but with Y” with X beeing a Core Class. Or have mechanics/concepts that are so out there, that they wouldn’t really work in (longer) play. 

  4. I have no problem with people charging a buck or two for classes, but I think we’re starting to hit  saturation point with them. I’d like to see more non-class content.

  5. Yeah, Tim, I felt the same way for a while. The share and trade mentality of AW never really caught on with the DW crowd, and it was weird to me. But, it doesn’t really bother me.

    Everything DW related that I’ve bought has been pretty good stuff. I have no idea if Ill ever use some of it, though. I think that’s the big “weakness” is that a compendium class or a base class is only as good as the setting it’s being used in. No harm no foul though — I can dissect the supplements and use their moving parts in new ways for my game.

    So, yeah. The cost was weird at first? But it doesn’t bother me. It’s a different thing, and people are working hard on their goodies. I don’t mind supporting artists.

    Besides, the cool DW stuff has inspired me to put a DW adventure up on DriveThru soon.

  6. I think the key maybe is to not pay money for stuff if you’re not sure about the quality. Support people with a track record of producing solid work (free or commercial), and that will promote higher quality work overall. And then encourage folks to release a lot of their work for free, especially if they are just learning and starting to play DW, so they can get feedback and improve before jumping into selling stuff. You can even sell final drafts of stuff you initially released for free, assuming people like it enough to pay for a more polished version. 

  7. Classes are ironic because they’re the first thing people try to create and the hardest to do right.

    As far as charging for it, I think it’s fair to charge for something you’ve done hard work on.  It’s the ethical responsibility of the author to make sure that the price is fair for them and for the audience.  If it’s properly playtested, etc, well, it’s probably worth the cash.

    A good thing, given away, will get you more money than a crappy thing you’re charging for, in the long run.

  8. All of Funhaver’s DW stuff is CC BY SA and hosted for free online. The DTRPG stuff is there for people who want to tip.

    Incidentally, I’m overhauling the Shaman starting moves after some feedback I got last week.

    (Feedback being that the moves weren’t clear enough, something which I never picked up on in testing since I was there to explain.)

    Also, disclaimer: I’m just a freelancer and don’t represent Brandon Schmelz 

  9. Alex Norris that’s a good way to do it, for sure.  It’s interesting, for Sage LaTorra and I, to see these little companies and designers popping up to create stuff for DW.

    Coincidentally, if anyone is going to PAX East, we’re holding a panel on creating content for Dungeon World.  If anyone will be there / is interested in joining the party.

  10. Adam Koebel To be fair, Funhaver is still primarily there for Last Stand, but Brandon Schmelz liked DW so much that he decided to publish a bunch of DW material!

  11. I usually just grab one of tony dowler’s microdungeons and just make up some random ideas and let the players help me fill in the rest, but it’s easy to be that flip about it after logging about seventeen billion hours of play.

  12. Adam Koebel I’ll be at PAX East and attending the panel.

    As long as we’re on the subject; what DW non-class content would people like to see or pay for? I’ve been toying with the idea of releasing “mini-settings”, and I’m still working on a  module that uses the Villager playbook as a base, so I’m wondering what people would consider a fair price for stuff like that.

  13. Someone released a full “setting” reskin not too long ago.  The classes had slightly adjusted moves (vancian magic replaced with a mana-point thing) and all the races were replaced with Great Houses of Humanity (so like, you were a Fighter of House Wolf, House Stag, House Hawk, etc).  There were some custom monsters and a few compendium classes.

    It was all a really rough sketch, but that’s the perfect supplement, to me – adjustment of the base framework to adapt to a particular campaign structure without breaking any of the core complement of mechanisms.  It was really cool, and totally the way I’d adapt something like Dark Sun or Eberron to DW.

  14. A problem with Class Design right now is, that there are basically two people that really got it. Adam and Sage. You still have problems with the Barbarian and you are busy with tons of stuff right now i guess. So these two people can’t help. People have experience with Playbooks and Skins but not DW classes (who are also the most complex of the bunch). So there is not that much help infrasturcture and it’s not really clear right now what makes a good Class. 

    This why i think designing Classes right now is hard. 

    Any different opinions? 

  15. I would really like to see/help with/create a setting hack for DW that attempts something Ravenloft-esque (frex: “An Ill-Fated Excursion to Blackrock Rookery”). In general, I find setting hacks more interesting than new classes, but that’s because I mostly approach things from the GM side, rather than the player side. And there’s so many cool types of fantasy adventures that you could do in DW with just a few custom moves and cool setting/adventure hooks.

  16. Yeah, I think it’s interesting that so much of the third-party DW support right now is classes and “core” content, not typical add-ons like monsters and spells.

    Some things I’d like to see:

    -More stuff like Dark Heart

    -A monster book that includes alternate monster creation rules and a bunch of monsters made with those rules.

    -Setting-ish stuff that’s still easy to digest (like Dark Heart)

  17. That is also what i would be interested in doing to hack DSA/TDE (Das Schwarze Auge / The Dark Eye) into dungeon world. I just don’t have teh time you know… 

  18. Also, I’m waiting for someone to completely rethink how to present an adventure. I mean, we’ve seen things-that-are-not-typical-adventures becoming more adventure-like, and some rethinking of adventures, but I feel like there’s space for a complete rethinking.

  19. Yeah Joseph especially because a lot of the things right now i think would be better as compendium classes because they don’t stretch really well over 10 Levels. Comp. classes are also much easier to make. 

    Maybe people think that a comp. class doesn’t really count because it’s not so easy to get into them? 

  20. Sage LaTorra Amen. Adventure design has been largely stagnant for years. There have to be some new, exciting ways to present adventures that connect strongly with the sandbox+dungeon approach of DW.

  21. I think that if I were going to charge for stuff, I’d be more likely to do collaborative projects on a ransom model and set the bar just high enough to pay for good art/layout. 

    A big part of the fun of DW is making stuff for the game so I tend to view anything that gets published for the game a an example or proof of concept.

  22. Sean Dunstan Some solid horror moves out there already in Murderous Ghosts (pretty much all of it), Monsterhearts (Hold Steady), and Ghost Lines (Steel).

  23. Couldn’t you make the Steel test from burning wheel more or less directly into a move? Roll+Wis/Cha/Con (?) 10+ everything is okay soldier on. 7-9 you can either take -1 ongoing or choose 1

    * Stand and drool

    * Run screaming

    * Drop prone and beg for mercy

    * Swoon 

    On a 6- you choose one of those

    Edit: This can probarbly be done better but the BW steel choices seem like solid things to use for a move. 

  24. Tim Franzke Yeah, there could be a bunch of different approaches. I really like the creepy part in Murderous Ghosts where the player says what they hope the ghost won’t do and then, on a failure, the ghost does just that. It incorperates player/PC dread directly into resolution.

  25. Jonathan Walton I do have MG and Monsterhearts, but I haven’t looked at either as close as I probably should.

    Tim Franzke That’s good, but I was thinking more along the lines of a sanity-style mechanic where it’s about the slow slide. But I guess that’d depend on the tone you’re going for; action-horror vs. otherworldly-horror.

  26. Sean Dunstan Have a new stat called Sanity, roll +San to resist madness, insanity damage is done to your Sanity score resulting in the mod becoming steadily worse.

  27. People making content and selling it is a pretty interesting data point. It’s a sign that some people, at least, feel like there’s enough room under Dungeon World’s wings for a little ecosystem to thrive. Ecosystems are potentially very good things from both a commercial and creative point of view.

  28. Speaking as one of the people who has put out a class and thinks there’s enough of those for now (the Namer if that’s familiar at all), I’m working right now on making a Mount supplement for DW complete with CCs and a couple of new general moves for those of us who think mounts have been criminally badly done or underrepresented in pretty much every game ever. These will range from the general horse you buy just to have a horse because horses are cool, to CCs covering things like mystic bonds with mounts, multi-rider howdahs for dinosaurs and even some vehicles.

    Also Corgis are a viable mount if you’re a fairy.

  29. tony dowler part of me just wants to throw up my hands and say “CAPITALISM!” and let the good stuff survive and the not-as-good-stuff (though personally I haven’t really seen any) just wither away.  Either way, I think that it’s really really cool that DW has the chance to be a “platform” and not just a game.

    Andri Erlingsson that is so awesome and can I please get one giant riding corgi for my halfling fighter, please?

  30. And I do feel quite okay with having my class up for sale, even if I offer it free. I mostly just want people to enjoy it! As much as the old idea of money sullying art rears its head, contributing to people in even small optional 1-2 dollar ways is not just encouraging for the authors to do more good things but also healthy for the business end of the hobby without being a burden on anyone.


    Yes, I’m really that impressionable.

    But actually that brings up the topic that mounts have a Size in this system which will allow you do to things a normal-sized person might not. So if you ride a Huge dragon, you can – while riding the Dragon – pick up a house by using the mount’s Huge Size. They become extensions of the character that way, extending your capability instead of necessarily being treated as independent entities. A Huge mount, conversely, won’t fit in a house or a dungeon because it is Huge.

    The fiction first philosophy of AW/DW is a great help here, because I also get an excuse for having mounts disappear in the middle of a fight as you become unhorsed and it just sort of trots off camera.

  32. When I get excited about a game, I enjoy making my own content for it. I’m currently working on what I hope will turn into a booklet of monsters for DW. But when I’ve contemplated new classes, two things come to mind. 

    One is that DW pretty much has the iconic fantasy RPG archetypes covered, with the exception of the monk. Anything else I can think of would be more of a variant class rather than something “new.” 

    Two–and most important–is my sense that creating a class is hard. Using the monster creation rules results in something that you can feel pretty confident will work with the game, but I’d think that it would be very difficult to come up with a set of 20+ moves that neither overshadow nor duplicate the existing class moves.

  33. David Thiel I’ve found the issue with creating classbooks is that it is the players interface to the game. Magic items and monsters are one step removed.

    If the playbook sucks or doesn’t do it right, then that spoils the players interaction with the game. Whereas, I can bring a nerf bat to monsters and magic items, nerfing playbook powers is “too much” power for me.

  34. Which is why I made the distinction “fantasy RPG archetypes.” (My presumption is that DW is specifically riffing on old-school D&D. Which is not to say that it can’t do other things, just that that’s the default.) There are always your archers and assassins and thief-acrobats, but even those seem to be covered by the existing playbooks.

    Also, I wrote that I couldn’t come up with anything new. I’m sure that there’s plenty of design space available for those who are more clever than I.

  35. I notice that when people share stuff, they’re all excited and it rubs off. High fives all around and people drawing others’ attention to it. With the exception of Josh Mannon, I haven’t seen creators talking up their materials for purchase so much and haven’t really been excited to pay to check them out.

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