Hasbro Postponed Update Dungeons and Dragons Open Game License: Without even trying, Hasbro rolled a “natural one,” an unavoidable miss in trying to convince fans that the company’s decision to rewrite its open gaming license, which had been in place for two decades, was about anything other than increasing profits. The disclosure of revisions to Wizards of the Coast’s (WOC) open game license caused an outrage among the fan base for “Dungeons & Dragons,” the company’s offspring and a popular tabletop role-playing game.
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Hasbro Postponed Update Dungeons and Dragons Open Game License
OGL 1.0 was issued in 2000 by WOC, allowing other developers to use WOC IPS such as characters, rules, gaming systems, and merchandise. Due to this mutually beneficial relationship, a cottage industry has developed, with popular shows such as Critical Role, Dimension 20, Not Another D&D Podcast, and Dungeons and Daddies: Not a BDSM Podcast helping to bring more exposure to the game and WOC than they had had in decades.
Over the past week we have witnessed an incredible outpour of passion and dedication from our community working together to protect and cultivate the inclusive environment of Dungeons & Dragons.
Please read our update on the Open Game License: https://t.co/9y4Z5MZpiq
— Dungeons & Dragons (@Wizards_DnD) January 13, 2023
There has been a spectacular rise in D&D’s popularity over the past decade, leading some to term it a “renaissance.”
As of a week ago, however, a leaked version of OGL 1.1 had been revealed that largely dissolved this partnership by, among other things, mandating that certain significant third-party developers pay WOC royalties of up to 25% for using their gaming system and products.
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There has been a huge outcry from the fan base as a result of this, with 67,000 people signing an online petition and a resulting loss of monthly revenue of around $400,000. Hasbro issued a statement rescinding their new license after a week of public outcry.
“From their response, I can tell we rolled a 1. It is now abundantly evident that we cannot simultaneously realize all three objectives without compromising our values “a statement by the corporation said. In other words, “there will be no royalty structure included.”
“Some would tell you that by speaking up, you caused us to change our minds and they came out on top. That group will be partially correct. Indeed, they triumphed, and we shared in their victory.”
Protesters opposed to the company’s policies have given the news a lukewarm reception. While some have celebrated this as a victory, others have said that nothing has changed and that WOC still plans to alter the OGL anyway. Estimates of the number of canceled subscriptions due to the boycott range from the low thirties to the high forties. The fanbase’s anger further grew when the president of WOC made some controversial comments.
Wizards of the Coast president Cynthia Williams told investors in a UBS virtual fireside chat in December, “D&D has never been more popular, and we have really terrific fans and interaction.” The brand, however, is not being capitalized on to its full potential.
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With its recent appearance in Netflix‘s smash hit “Stranger Things,” Dungeons & Dragons has enjoyed a boom in popularity among independent video creators, and the release of “D&D: Honor Among Thieves” will undoubtedly give it a further boost. The official OGL 1.1 release date has been pushed back.
Against all odds, the party found a time when everyone was available. pic.twitter.com/1LA3PVhMWU
— Dungeons & Dragons (@Wizards_DnD) January 4, 2023
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Frequently asked questions
Does Pathfinder use the Ogl?
Pathfinder, published by Paizo, is one of the many games licensed by WoTC’s original OGL.
Who owns Wizards of the Coast?
In 1999, Hasbro purchased the company and since then it has operated as a wholly-owned subsidiary. A reorganization within Hasbro occurred in February 2021, and Wizards of the Coast was made the head of the new “Wizards & Digital” business.
Who owns D&D?
Developed by Ernest Gary Gygax and David Arneson, the fantasy RPG Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) was first published in 1974 by Gygax’s firm, Tactical Studies Rules, Inc. (TSR). Wizards of the Coast, a Hasbro, Inc. subsidiary, bought the game in 1997.