Palladium embezzlement fire sale is go

For goodness’ sake. Some bastard allegedly embezzled and stole a bunch of money from Palladium, and now Kevin Siembieda has made an appeal to Rifts fans to save the company by buying limited edition prints. The saddest thing here, to my eye, is the testimony on Siembieda’s part that he’s done right by the fans by keeping prices low – if those fans were willing to pay what small-print-run specialty books cost, maybe he wouldn’t be in such dire straits. Anyway, if you’ve a mind to, go help out one of the only game companies (according to friends of the Cave) who ever paid their freelancers on time.


  1. [if those fans were willing to pay what small-print-run specialty books cost, maybe he wouldn’t be in such dire straits.]

    I think having someone embezzle $850K – $1.3M would put any RPG publisher in dire straits.

  2. AT least two distributors are discounting all Palladium books to retailers right now to help generate more cash for them. Another option y’all may wanna consider is running down to your FLGS and pick up that book you have been thinking about…

  3. This is such crap…I think I will start a RPG company and start whining to get money from fans…it seems to be the trend.

  4. Yeah, I totally agree. These RPG companies think if they have something wrong happen to them that they can just start whining to consumers to get money from them. I wish I could pay my mortgage that way…

  5. Yeah, I totally agree. These RPG companies think if they have something wrong happen to them that they can just start whining to consumers to get money from them. I wish I could pay my mortgage that way…

  6. Don’t go there with the “tens of thousands of fans”…TSR had hundreds of thousands of fans and went out of business because of bad decisions. Things go wrong with business…that is the risk…if there was no risk of theft or the economy, everyone would run their own business. If they go out of business, then someone else will take over their products or it will make room for someone else.

  7. Before you can say “don’t go there,” you have to know where I’m trying to go. No one has disputed that poor decisions helped get Palladium where they are; what you seem not to have noticed is that the current situation is that Palladium is selling a product, for money, to people who want it, in order to get out of their current situation. The situation has been made part of the marketing that influences that buying decision on the part of fans, and that’s regrettable from a certain viewpoint. But the fans are there; Palladium delivered a lot to them over the years that they considered of value. It isn’t great to have to rely on an appeal like this, but it is great to have created enough value to have the option. I’m not thrilled about the epidemic of bad business calls in the industry either, but comments like yours make me want to say, “What value have you delivered to gamers lately?”

  8. When does suffering $850k-1.3million from embezzlement amount to a “poor business decision”. Apparently something criminal occurred, at least according to the press release. We don’t have much because according to Siembieda(never could spell his name) there are pending legal proceedings.

    No all the folks with the “these games companies and their whining” I suppose could say that the allegations are b.s. to cover poor business decisions. However, I’m going to put my credence with the the release rather than the anti-fanboys playing Monday morning quarterback about “bad business decisions” without citing any real information beyond “I agree with the last guy in the thread”. And of course, I’m also trolling for gossip for anyone who knows what might have _really_ gone done at Palladium.

  9. Man, that was really unclear. I mean that Palladium’s financial troubles are the situation they’re trying to get out of.

    And really my point is that, as much as the business side of things needs to get a lot more hard-nosed in analysis of the gaming world, we can’t lose sight of the fact that gamers love what they love and deserve a shot at keeping it if they want to keep it.

  10. There are rumors on the internets which suggest that the $850k-$1.3m figure may be inflated, since it refers to “damages,” which can be a spongy term.

  11. I’m more with you misuba, I was speaking more of Ron and “Blah”‘s posts. Of course I got a lot of typos so didn’t really transmit well myself.

    I think there’s a problem with the “games are just business” as opposed to a “craft industry” (which may not always make economic sense) view that a lot of would be pundits who’ve taken intro to Econ or what have you seem to have. If dismal economics is all the matters the entire game industry should just become a wholely owned subsidiary of Hasbro.

    Personally, I never cared for Palladium. My experience was entirely through Robotech, but I was so disappointed with the product, I never went with anything else. However, if Palladium’s distress is the result of a crime, “that’s business” is not the right call. On the other hand, since the embezzlement allegation are under an alleged legal shroud and the litany of other stresses are all ‘deals that didn’t pan out’, well, that is business.

    “Damages” hmmm. Yeah, that would seem to imply that $850k-$1.3m wasn’t actually taken. Rather, money lost could’ve led to $850-$1.3k. The mystery’s a little fishy though. Is Palladium really that big a company, and the industry that in the dark about its workings and staffings, that no one on the outside has any clue as to what really went down?

  12. First off, I truly feel sorry for Kevin Sembieda and hope the criminal will be caught and stringed by his or her genitalia.

    Having said that, I’m not a big RIFTS fan, and though I have played with ROBOTECH a long time ago — like I have played with d6 STAR WARS … with reluctance but no enjoyment — I’m not going to buy Palladium Book products out of charity.

    So, if you are indeed an enthusiastic RIFT fan with no grudge toward Palladium Books (and Kevin) and in need of replacing your worn collection, then now is good time as any.

    Although my guts can be often wrong, I don’t think it is an elaborate marketing ruse schemed by Kevin.

  13. I would love to see what you would do if someone stole/embezzled 850$k to over 1million $$ from your company that you started from the ground up. Alledgedly? I think not. Check with the Wayne County Prosecutors (Michigan), the police report is on file.

    Have a nice day.

  14. I bid you good day to in BonJovian fashion as well,

    Ahem, “alledged” I think so. Legally speaking, charges are allegations until trial and conviction. Check with the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office and tell me what they actually tell you. There’s a case #, but if there were anything like an indictment or momentum on this, that’d be publically available. So what we have is an “investigation.” We don’t even know if there are charges, nor do we know how much of a case the investigators have, or if there’s even a suspect (grand jury anyone?). All we have is Kevin’s letter and a lot of people wondering whether Palladium even had $850-1million in anything other than “projections,” projections which according to Kevin S.’s narrative’s fell through or failed to bare fruit as a result of the theft/embezzlement.

    This could as easily be read as Kevin S. seeing loads of business woes and thinking “it all goes back to that guy or girl who stole my _personal_ art collection and screwed my company backstock a few years back”.

  15. Palladium has been on the rocks for years, with the combined weights of poor editting, slow publication, and poor material dragging it back. Thier steadfast refusal to update thier system or at least streamline it was by itself irritating; but thier constant threats of legal action against home-brewers were the last straw for many of us. Its unfortunate that Palladium is sinking, I have many fond memories of thier games, but much like dinosaurs, they couldn’t or wouldn’t evolve to match changing times.

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