James Desborough had a post about kickstarting a TTRPG Market research. I think its a great Idea, but its one that needs some more consensus and brainstorming if you want to get as many people on board. Ideally it would cover multiple countries, not just the USA and Canada. It would be nice to have the research go into EU, Australia and New Zealand, Japan, S.Korea, Brazil, Mexico, as well as China and India... I know i'm hitting unlikely territory with "wishing" for South East Asia (Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, and Hong Kong) even if I scale down my survey expectations.
It would be nice to look gaming demographics, just to know what is out there, and see where the hobby is trending. Such information would be helpful in making adjustments in how one spends resources for the future. I'm also open to the answer being pessimistic.
Knowing the total market for RPGs in the globe would be awesome. While I'm studying mandarin I was able to learn about the amount of people learning english in China is far greater than 200M. India speaks english and the BPO community requires a high cultural familiarity with Australia, UK, Canada and America. if you would take the people who can read and understand the RPG material, the inroads look quite promising. of course someone was to be the one to break through to those untapped markets, for the others to get in, but the first one in is the standard by which all others are measured.
It gets me thinking ala-Traveller about market penetration: like what if X got big in Indoneasia with its 240M, how big can be the niche community be? especially with game materials prices going down with ebooks; or Y was in chinese and sold to Taiwan, Hongkong and Singapore, and became big there. Big enough to sustain a Friendly Local Gaming Store? or that game get popular enough it reaches the economic zones like Macau and Guangzhou, also in Shanghai and Beijing? I bet there would be knock-offs but these all serve to develop the market in the long run.