Why we do it this way

We have been trying to get our games on a new site, but the owner had some issues with the cost of our product (He thought they were to cheep, and the sheer volume of what we offer), and so asked me to explain it all to him. In the end my reply got a bit long, but I think it sort of answered his questions and offered at the same time my views on e-publishing and selling games. So here you go, have a look and see what you think, am I right, or a nut case.

Thanks for the prompt reply,

I understand your concerns in regards to price and sheer number of products, and could see how that could be a problem for you, and yes, we tend to swamp a small site and explode their board game section with such large offerings of print to play games.

Generally after ten years as an e-publisher (Myself and William my partner both have been doing this for awhile), we have found that the best price brake for a PDF product is at about $5.00. Anything more and the sales numbers begin to drop. While we could produce the products as print ready and or solely as print products, and thus our price brake would have to increase dramatically, we are solely an e-publisher and thus don’t have to worry about overhead, storage, print cost, etc. As we do almost all of our work in house, and thus have little out going costs, we can keep our products very cheep and thus hit that $5.00 price point almost all the time.

We have though begun to move into even smaller priced products, with many now being offered at $1.00 price point. Again, with almost no outlay in cost to get the product out there, sheer volume makes up for the low price. Many customers will buy a $1.00 product just on a whim, and then once we have them hooked, they will go back and buy more. Yes we might sell only a few of any given product in a month, but we also have several hundred downloads each month because we offer so many different products and cover so many different areas of interest.

While primarily a print to play board game maker, Avalon has made it a point to move into RPGs and clip art, and plan to make a large offering of inexpensive RPG materials this year. (Pathfinder products for the most part)

Ultimately our goal is Branding, and providing a good product for a great price. Make them small, make them good and sell lots of them is our goal.

In terms of a release schedule, we put out a good ten products or more a month, and will continue that high level for a year or more (We tend to work a good year ahead of release time, and thus have a lot of products stock piled, just waiting to go)

While Avalon is a new venture for me and my partner William (I operated the former e-publishing house Bad Baby, while William owns and runs Comstar), we plan to make a large splash in the field and to grow. Already Avalon has done well in its first month and looks to continue to do well in the months to come. Even with a soft economy, we are pulling several hundred downloads a month of our products. With our various game lines offered on One Book, e23, WGD, and YGN, and with us currently working to offer our games on both your site and Pazio, we have hit just about all the sites worth being on.

In the end it’s less about making a lot of money (No one is getting rich on e-publishing that I know of, save for One Book, and I think they blow more smoke then anything else), but the love of making good games and offering them to folks who love to play games. If at the same time we all can make some money while we are at it, then all the better.

Well, I don’t know if this helps with your concerns, and I would fully understand if you decline to carry our games. As I said, it can be a lot of work getting Avalon up and running on a site, and I have found that what sells well on one site doesn’t mean it will do well on another, customers go to different sites for different types of games and products, and while Avalon might do well on your site, who knows until we offer the product to your customers.

Thanks for the time and consideration,

Robert Hemminger
Avalon Games

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