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Gaming

Wizards Of The Coast ‘Sorry’ After Dungeons & Dragons OGL Drama

As reported last week, Wizards had plans for a new OGL that “significantly limits the type of content allowed and requires anyone making money under the license to report their products directly to Wizards of the Coast”. The reactions to this leaked proposal were so negative that, as Dice breaker assign“an onslaught of bad press including competitors such as Paizo and Kobold Press creating an independently audited open license to develop their own table games.”

Now that they’ve had time to view the wreckage, the wizards have admitted they were wrong. Very wrong. In a blog post published earlier today Kyle Brink, executive producer on D&D, said, “Let me start with an apology. We’re sorry. We’re wrong”.

Brink says Wizards will be “more open and transparent” in the future, and future changes to the OGL will be made in consultation with fans. You can read his full statement below:

Hi. I’m Kyle Brink, the executive producer of D&D. It’s my team that makes the game we all play.

D&D has been a big part of my life long before I worked at Wizards and will continue to be so long after I’m done. My mission, and that of the entire D&D team, is to bring everyone the creative joy and lifelong friendships that D&D has given us.

The past few days and weeks have been extremely difficult for everyone. As players, fans and stewards of the game, we cannot and will not let things continue like this.

I’m here today to talk about a path forward.

However, let me start with an apology first. We’re sorry. We’re wrong.

Our language and requirements in the draft OGL were disruptive to creators and did not support our core goals of protecting and cultivating an inclusive gaming environment and limiting the OGL to TTRPGs. Then we made things even more complicated by being quiet for too long. We hurt fans and creators when more frequent and clear communication could have prevented so much of this.

From now on, we’re going to do this in a better way: more openly and transparently, with our entire community of creators. With time to iterate, to get feedback, to improve.

If this sounds familiar, it’s because that’s how we do it for the game itself. So let’s do the same for the OGL.

We’ll listen to you and then we’ll share with you what we’ve heard, just like we do in our Unearthed Arcana and One D&D playtests. This will be a solid conversation before we release a future version of the OGL.

Here’s what to expect.

– On or before Friday, January 20, we will be sharing new proposed OGL documentation for your review and feedback, just as we do with playtest material.

– After reviewing the suggested OGL you can complete a short survey just like Unearthed Arcana playtest feedback surveys. It asks you specific questions about the document and includes open form fields to share any other feedback you have.

– The survey will remain open for at least two weeks and we will give you advance notice before it closes so that anyone who wants to participate can complete the survey. We then collect, analyze, respond and present what we have heard from you.

Finally, you deserve some stability and clarity. We’re committed to giving creators both input and space to prepare for each update to the OGL. There are also tons of things that won’t be affected by an OGL update. So today, now, we’re going to map out all the areas that this conversation won’t touch.

Any changes to the OGL will not affect at least these creative endeavors:

– Your video content. Whether you’re a commentator, streamer, podcaster, liveplay cast member or other creator on platforms like YouTube and Twitch and TikTok, you’re always covered by the Wizards Fan Content Policy. The OGL does (and will) do nothing about this.

– Your accessories for your own content. There are no changes to the OGL that affect your ability to sell minis, novels, clothes, dice, and other items related to your creations, characters, and worlds.

– Unpublished works, for example outsourced services. You use the OGL if you want to publish your works that reference fifth edition content through the SRD. That means commissioned work, paid DM services, consulting, and so on are not affected by the OGL.

– VTT content. Any update to the OGL will still allow any creator to publish content on VTTs and will still allow VTT publishers to use OGL content on their platform.

– DM’s Guild content. The content you release on DMs Guild is published under a Community Content Agreement with Dungeon Masters Guild. This does not change.

– Your OGL 1.0a content. Nothing will affect content you’ve published under OGL 1.0a. That will always be licensed under OGL 1.0a.

– Your earnings. There are no royalty or financial reporting requirements.

– Your ownership of your content. You retain ownership of your content with no license back requirements.

That’s all mine for now. You will hear from us again on or before Friday as described above, and we look forward to the conversation.

Kyle Brink

Executive Producer, Dungeons & Dragons

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