Sora Miyuki COO of WoTC
What would happen if I would become WoTC COO
I understand my tendency to express negativity towards Wizard of the Coast, but it stems from my profound love for Dungeons and Dragons. I genuinely care about the game, including its 5th edition, and it pains me to see what I perceive as mismanagement of the brand by WoTC. It appears they are catering to specific groups while neglecting others, a trend I've observed in many modern corporations. However, what puzzles me is the overarching goal behind these decisions. In my simple understanding, the primary objective should be straightforward: making money. Yet, it seems WoTC struggles to grasp that without the support of its fans, financial success is unattainable.
Today, I'd like to indulge in an imaginative exercise wherein I envision how I would steer the Dungeons and Dragons brand if, hypothetically, Elon Musk were to acquire it and appoint me as the COO and Ultimate Supreme Commander of WoTC. Let's embark on a journey to "Make D&D Great Again."
Step 1: Embrace the Past
Given the monumental legacy, neglecting Dungeons and Dragons would be unforgivable. As the Ultimate Supreme Commander of WoTC, I would ensure that AD&D, AD&D 2nd Edition, D&D 3.5, and D&D 4 Edition receive widely available reprints of their Trinity Books. This includes the Player Handbook, Monster Manual, and Dungeon Master Guide, all featuring updated artwork to circumvent licensing issues. However, the ruleset would remain true to the originals. Additionally, I propose the creation of "Collector's Editions" books containing original art, pending legal considerations.
Supplemental books would also be released, with the most famous adventures and expansions re-released based on customer demand and sales performance. No system settings would be tied exclusively to any edition.
Step 2: Build the Audience
Worlds like Forgotten Realms, Dragonlance, Eberron, Ravenloft, Dark Sun, and every single system setting would have World Setting Books—books that are system-agnostic and not connected to any specific system. You could buy one Forgotten Realms book and use it in AD&D, D&D 3.5, D&D 5e, or any other system, including Pathfinder and Castle & Crusade. Our goal is to make those worlds accessible to everyone. Books in those worlds would be commissioned from experienced writers, but new writers could also try their hand, with approval from "Lore Curators" at WoTC. Animation would be a goal, inspired by the success of productions like Critical Role and Riot Games' Arcane. We know there is a huge market for adult cartoons that serve as introductions to our worlds. Games licenses would be lowered to allow more studios to create games that promote our worlds, rather than titles that may inadvertently paint D&D as antiquated. The idea is simple: by reducing earnings from games, cartoons, and books, we expand our audience by exposing our product to a wider audience. It's a form of advertisement that won't cost the company much and will provide additional income. Hey, how about Anime in Forgotten Realms or Planescape?
Step 3: Future of D&D with 7th Edition
When developing the 7th Edition of D&D (I skipped 6th Edition, as I consider it to be One D&D), we would focus on two products. We would have System Agnostic World Settings, so our focus would be on acquiring a new audience with Dungeons and Dragons. The Player Manual would focus on Basic D&D—explaining basics to new players. In fact, it would come in a box with character sheets and a set of dice. The Dungeon Master Guide would focus on some advanced settings, like additional ways to roll stats, how to run a game, how to adjust monsters for encounters, and how to create NPCs. Dungeons & Dragons would be the basic version of the game, an entry-level for new players. You may be thinking, "Wait, why?" The answer is simple. There will be other versions for experienced players—Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. Yes, we're bringing that back. AD&D 7th Edition would have expanded rules and more elaborate systems. While Basic D&D would be entry-level, AD&D would focus on expanding the D&D version for things like army management, castle management, naval combat, airship combat, and more. Where D&D would teach players how combat works, AD&D would allow DMs to experiment with the environment during combat. D&D would teach players about inventory weight management, while AD&D would add a focus on supplies management. This duality of D&D would allow us to create a system that is easy to play but hard to master. But throughout the entire 7th edition, we will never forget about older systems.
Step 4: The Future of D&D is Digital and Print
D&D Beyond will become a hub and market for digital D&D material. Every homebrew creator will be able to join and, after evaluation, create its own storefront and earn money from digital sales. It will become a VTT tool for online games that will compete with Roll 20 and other VTTs. But the word I am focusing on is "compete," not monopolize the market. I do not believe 3D VTT will be easy enough to expand, so I would not focus on it that much. D&D Beyond will become a tool to manage character sheets, create worlds, create maps, create campaigns, and everything else online TTRPGs need. It will allow Dungeon Masters to create their businesses and earn money by being "Paid DMs." It will offer a tool to search for players nearby to create local groups. D&D Beyond will become a tool every DM and player will want, focusing on what is important for both online and local games.
DriveThruRPG will become even more accessible than it is now, but this time it will be actively promoted as a shop where you can buy all the books. So not only hardcore TTRPG fans will know it, but everyone will hear about it. You will no longer be able to buy books on WoTC/D&D's page or D&D Beyond. You will need to do it through DriveThruRPG for both print, PDF versions, or D&D Beyond versions. DriveThruRPG will become our "front face shop."
There it is—my vision as Ultimate Supreme Commander. Do you think you would be able to believe in WoTC again? Would you try new systems? How would you see the brand if you were in charge? Share your thoughts on X (x.com/elvenmaidinn).