On the 13th Age eBook release

We’ve had a few questions about the 13th Age ebook release. First the facts.

  • The ebook will be made available before the end of the month to anyone buying the Escalation Edition.
  • The ebook will also be included with any order after the release date.
  • For retail customers, the PDF will be available to customers of Bricks and Mortar stores free via the Bits and Mortar program.
  • The ebook will be released as a stand-alone product one to two months after the retail release.


We’ve tried lots of methods with different releases, and the one we are using for 13th Age has worked best in the past.

Each pre-order sale makes us about six times as much as a retail sale, but even so, mail order sales will still be a fraction of retail sales and we think that the buzz amongst alpha gamers builds retail sales in any case. So, the pre-order lets us print high quality books, much higher than we could risk otherwise, and doesn’t impact retailers, or even helps them.

The pre-order includes the PDF and any other ebook version we might ever do, which we hope satisfies the desire to play the game on an electronic device. The mail order release version will also include these elements.

When the retail version is out, retailers who have joined Bits and Mortar will be able to supply the ebook to their customers, too.

Then, when the retailers have had a good bite of the cherry, we release the eBook verison. Now, if we charged the price of the book minus the printing cost for ebooks, we could release now, but I prefer to price them a little lower than that – about half the retail price (though I can’t promise that).

This has the disadvantage of leaving the people who only want an ebook version out in the cold until the ebook is released, but it’s not much of a wait, and on balance it seems a reasonable choice.

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