RPG License Update Leaked Dungeons & Dragons caused a storm in the gaming industry. Prospects for taking part of earnings from partners Wizards of the Coast led to the fact that some companies decided to switch to their own licenses, in particular, Paizo announced an open license Pathfindera Kobold Press announced the work on the system Project Black Flag. Ryan Dancy, former vice president of Wizards of the Coast, caused a loud resonance, who launched a petition calling for a revision of the rules. And now the company decided to clarify its goals and tactics.
According to Wizards of the Coast, the Dungeons & Dragons open license had three main goals from the beginning:
give creators the ability to prevent D&D content from being used in discriminatory products and for hate purposes; prevent the use of D&D in Web3, blockchain games, and NFTs by limiting content to tabletop campaigns, modules, and add-ons; make sure the license is being used by content creators, custom modders, emerging game designers and gamer communities, and not large corporations for commercial and promotional purposes. A test version of the updated license was presented to individual members of the community in order to receive feedback and finalize the provisions. However, the reaction showed that the creators failed to convey their ideas (“we threw out 1”), and now the document will be finalized.
The new version will include provisions to protect and develop the Dungeons & Dragons inclusive environment, which should only apply to tabletop RPG content. This means that any license updates will not affect educational and charity campaigns, live broadcasts, cosplay, virtual campaigns, and the like.
The license will remove references to royalties, which, according to the company, were made only for the knowledge of large corporations trying to make money on an open license. Wizards of the Coast promises to be clear and unambiguous: Content will be owned by its creators, not the company. The license return provisions are intended to protect authors and their partners from accusations of theft, and this will be taken into account in the new edition.
Wizards of the Coast assures that all decisions are submitted to the judgment of the players and are always ready to accept feedback. Therefore, even the scandal that broke out is considered useful: it showed that this time the company did something wrong. But in the end, both sides should win, because now it is clear what the players need and what scares them.
The company promises not to let us down. But we will not see the new text of the license in the coming days: Wizards of the Coast will seriously refine its provisions.
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