Wizards’ Mana Tapped Out

I discovered this gem of information thanks to mxyzplk on Geek Related, so be sure to pay him a visit if you are reading this post!

Monday, July 28th, Randy Buehler, VP of Digital Gaming at Wizards of the Coast announced in a Gleemax post that WotC has officially pulled the plug on the half-assed social network for gamers called Gleemax. Gleemax will close sometime in September (no solid date yet).

The reason behind scrapping Gleemax? Well besides it’s lukewarm reception and mediocre offerings, it is most likely because Dungeons & Dragons Insider (DDI) has fallen way behind the power curve. Nothing tangible beyond some fancy demos has arrived for this web service and e-zines Dragon and Dungeon (R.I.P. printed magazines) with a monthly subscription on par with MMOs, $14.95 a month.

Thats not all, according to this post Wizards will be refocusing their publishing arm as well. While the rest of the 2008 release schedule will continue, anything not dealing with Magic : the Gathering or Dungeons & Dragons will get the axe. This is related to novels, so the Discovery line is out in 2009 and as well as other series in the Mirrorstone imprint.

So, what exactly does Hasbro directing Wizards to focus on their cash cows imply? Hasbro is doing well financially according to this from EnWorld, an earning conference call. They only casually reference Wizards of the Coast in their meeting… making me think that perhaps D&D isn’t the shining example they’d hoped. Either that, or maybe D&D has never made enough money to mention. Only time will tell on how this development plays out.

It also begs the question on if gamers should create their own one-stop gaming site, with gaming tools…

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