I’m going to give Wizards’ a lot of love here, just to counter-balance the (valid) criticisms around the blogosphere about their p-poor forays into software and online initiatives (they should stop. Just…. stop). Here it comes: D&D is one of THE BEST VALUE hobbies around. Thank you, Wizards of the Coast.
I can prove it too, using the Magic of Numbers.
Y’see, if we divide the number of hours we spend doing a thing by the amount we’ve spent, we get a Number. The higher the Number, the higher it’s Value. If I spend a dollar on a comic and spend an hour reading it, it’s value is 1. Spend twenty dollars on a DVD that I only watch a few times (5 hours, say) and it’s value is 0.25.
(Incidentally, this is Why Movie Piracy Happens – the Value Ratio is far too low, so people set their own price point. Economics 101, something ignored by movie studios in much the same way that tobacco companies ignored health issues for decades).
Good computer games can be pretty good Value – if that £30 game keeps me playing for 100 hours that’s a Value of 3 and a third. If it’s a poor game I play once (2 hours, say) then it spends the rest of it’s days on the shelf then it’s Value is only 0.06: very bad Value!
(That’s one reason Game Piracy happens – the Value depends too much on how often you play. Casual gamers play less, and are therefore more likely to copy games to get a decent Value Ratio (though they don’t know that’s what they’re doing). Hardcore gamers are more likely to buy, because they’ll get Value anyhow).
On to D&D. £60 for the three 4e D&D Core Books gets me….. uhhhh……. let’s say 10 hours per week for 4 years – that’s 2,080 hours’ enjoyment, and a Value of 34.6! The more I play D&D, think about D&D, blog about D&D or prep games, the higher the Value too. Add in the excellent free (so far) content that Wizards’ is chucking out and the Value of this game just keeps getting higher and higher. Way to go, guys!
(‘course, replace D&D with Warhammer, GURPS, M&M or whatever – it’s all good Value!) :D.
Good computer game: 3.33
D&D: 34.6 and rising
And that’s just me – the multiply the Value of D&D by the number of players ’round your table, and you’ll see that role-playing games are one of THE BEST VALUE hobbies there is!
We’ve got the Numbers to prove it.