Yes, plenty of D&D events via Baldman Games, but no official presence...
i don't really get WotC's approach anymore.
Wow, they really don't understand the game market at all. I understand that they want to hit new venues, but they really don't understand that you need to reinforce and interact with your main customer base. The people who attend Gen Con tend to be the leaders and/or organizers of their game groups. If D&D is pushed to them, they spread it to the others in their groups.
What a bad dission on thier part. Iwas thinking of going for the first time since 94 now I may have to rethink things.
All they are anymore is a project team that outsources product, they do not have the staff for Gen Con. The problem to me is Hasbro, a game company that also does not promote their products at such an event.
With the OGL just being released for 5E, it is the 3rd parties that will be supporting 5E, bet we will see a number of non-gaming events discussing their plans and product lines.
This strategy is in line with how they've approached Gen Con for several years, which is to say that they've ceded leadership there to Paizo. They don't want to be the #2, and I'm sure they've done the math to show that the price of attending Gen Con doesn't turn into sales like it does at PAX.
At PAX and Origins, D&D gets to be the Big Game. A good number of the hardcore DMs I know are more interested in the intimacy of Gary Con than the carnival of Gen Con. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.
It is nice that they announced their plans ahead of time, letting people who want direct contact with WOTC plan appropriately.
While not surprising, since they were missing last year, this is very disappointing. The third parties they put into place last year did a good job, but it's not the same. It feels like being discarded.
I'm surprised, too. There has to be a cost/benefit comparison going on inside Hasbro, and for some reason, GenCon doesn't make the cut.
Hmm. You guys dont think this will affect the turnout as a whole this year do you? I don't play D&D personally but my Wife does so this is definately dissapointing news.
It didn't seem to impact last year.
I don't think it was that widely known before GenCon last year. I heard a lot of people ask where WotC was, and a lot of people were surprised that they weren't there.
Might be more of an impact this year, because last year everyone just assumed that they would be there but they weren't. This year, they are letting people know way in advance. Also, with them being at Origin this year and bringing back the D&D Open there, I've heard some people talking about skipping Gen Con and doing Origin instead. Personally, I'm going to try to do both, but it's easier for me since I live in the midwest. Others might have to choose one. I still don't think it will be a huge impact, but I'd bet that Gen Con won't break the attendance record again this year.
I'll take that bet. :)
I'm with mrshiny on this one. I think we'll see record breaking attendance year after year until 2018, the year after the anniversary, and then I think it will subside a bit, but not much until people start seeing a significantly smaller return of fun on their growing investment. Then I think some will start looking at other cons, and some will be so disillusioned with the whole con experience that they will look at Disneyland/Disneyworld, all-inclusive cruises as viable options, especially since I see the potential for the "Old Guard" (like me) to be making way for the next generation. I hear it every year from people who have gone since it moved to Milwaukee - it's just not the same. I can understand that since attendance is nearly 18 times what it was back in 1985. And none of us are getting any younger, so yeah... there's that, too.
D&D will be just fine at Gen Con. We will have tons of cool events like every year. New events are being worked on this year. Programs are being revamped and space needs addressed with Gen Con (to reduce noise during play to give a better experience for the players). We're doing the same thing at Origins. Both will kick butt and you should try to hit on or the other (or both).
Yes, keep in mind we the loyal Gen Con goers are probably only about 10-20% of the attendance. Even if all the downtown rooms have 4 people, that's only 24,000 out of what, 80k? I guarantee you the "average" Gen Con attendee neither noticed nor cared that WotC was not there.
Am I mis-remembering?
WOTC will not be there but they will have several employees, artists, and authors there in an offical capacity.
Gen Con 2015 All Access Program
Gen Con 2015 All Access Update
I would have also linked to various forum threads, but the ones I had links to have all been deleted: here they deleted most of the previous forums, Wizards deleted all of their forums, and Baldman Games doesn't appear to have event-specific forums anymore. The Wizards thread is on the Wayback Machine, though, and I'm sure you can find threads on other sites if you poke around.