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Sat May 25, 2019, 07:18 PM

The US-China trade war, the cost of paper, and the economics behind roleplaying games

Since early 2018, the United States has been in the grips of a trade war with China. A series of escalating tariff increases on imports between the two countries has hit both hard, along with the global economy. After a short truce, negotiations appear to have failed, and President Donald J. Trump has announced plans to increase tariffs on new categories of products to 25%.

Those categories include books, dice, cards, and miniatures: the core components of roleplaying games.

I spoke to a few of the people behind some of our favourite games to get their views on what impact the tariff increase might have on the RPG industry. What I got was a glimpse at the economics behind the games we play, and why the price of roleplaying games may be rising ó for more complicated reasons.

The complexities of the USís trade relations with China are beyond the scope of this article, so itís not something Iím going to go into in any detail here. In short, the Trump administration is presently engaged in a trade war with China.


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