DB and the 4E Game System License

Skarn Rapajya

First Post
Having just now DLed & read the new GSL, I was quite dismayed by the OGL Conversion clause.

Stefan, have you had a chance to read this yet, and if so, do you still intend to update DB for 4E?

For those who haven't yet read the new 4E GSL, Section 6 requires that any product converted from 3.x OGL to 4E GSL may no longer be offered under the OGL, nor may any other title in the same product line be released as OGL. Conversion is all-or-nothing by product line, and a company may not offer products under GSL that are similar to any of their other existing OGL offerings (GSL paragraph 6.2).

Considering this clause, I for one, as a satisfied DB customer, gladly release you from your earlier promise to update DB. Combine this with the fact that it looks much easier to adapt 4E for solo play (note the random dungeon generator in DMG Chapter 10), even a return to true single character solo play, I'd much rather see DB remain an OGL product line.


Besides, there's nothing to prevent me, as a consumer, from using DB with 4E characters, monsters, and treasure tables, leaving everything else as is. (Or maybe changing the room sizes from 4x6 & 6x8 to 6x8 & 8x10.) I haven't tried using it this way yet . . . and even though I haven't seen anything from DBWorld yet, I'd guess it'll be even easier to use for 4E without having to do anything but work up my own encounter tables & tie in the treasure tables from the DMG, which are much closer in structure to what DB already uses.

The only problem I see with this is that such 4E player-made conversions would probably not be allowed to be centralized on the TOGC website along with the existing house rules section. I do think, however, that user postings to the message boards with self-created conversions should fall under fair-use. (DISCLAIMER: I am NOT an attorney. These are just my own unfounded speculations.)

As for commercial concerns, I'm pretty sure that the way the OGL was worded will keep 3.x alive in the third-party market.


Addendum (07-15-2008):

I realize that most people around here are lurkers, and I have to admit that I usually am too. However, with the amount of . . . debate . . . regarding 4E in general and it's mixed reviews, I find it quite interesting that with the number of people who have read this message (83 so far) that nobody else has an opinion about DB (or any other TOGC product) and 4E.

Stefan originally stated, for example, that his various 'Complete . . . Card' products would be updated to 4E, but that the 3.5 OGL versions would still be available. Now that the 4E GSL has been released, anybody who reads it (and can make a modicum of sense out of the legalese) will realize that WotC has prevented him from making good on this promise.

This topic, therefore, will strike at the heart of Stefan's wallet. I'm trying to stir up some conversation from his customer base to give him an idea of where opinions lie, and thereby help him make a better informed decision on this issue. (In other words, I'm volunteering this forum to conduct a little bit of market research on his behalf.)
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Skarn Rapajya

First Post
Keeping the Thread Alive

I'm double-posting specifically because I feel that this thread needs to be kept alive, at least until Stefan reads it, and the only person with the ability to make it a sticky thread is AWOL.

I, for one, appreciate the level of effort that Stefan has put into his products. Enough so that I have been willing to make my opinions available despite being (usually) a die-hard lurker. Normally I would say that these opinions are worth exactly what you paid for them . . . .

Stefan, once again, where are you? Its been almost two months since you've logged in.

Everybody else, am I the only person with an opinion on this matter? Or should mine be the only voice that Stefan hears on the subject?


First Post
I admit, I too am a long time lurker... I was a bit more active when TOGC had the old forums... But when the boards switched to here, I didn't want to sign up for it... But, to show my support, I made me an account today!

Anyhoo... for me, I wasn't using 3.x rule set anyways. I never much liked the rule set... too many rules that just slowed the game down... I was always planning on using BECMI rules instead. I found DB to be relatively generic that any game system would work. I looked at a few systems to try out.

However, after reading many reviews of 4E, I decided to obtain a copy of the rules. I have not yet had a chance to read them, but the quickstart guide looks very promising. I am considering using 4E instead as the rules appear to be more miniature based rather than RP based as most reviews indicate.

Personally, I don't want to spend 10 hours of my Saturday every weekend playing D&D anymore... To me, I want DB to be a board game (with ongoing campaign style leveling like Hero Quest) and so far, it has lived up to that. If you ever played Everquest, the expansion, Lost Dungeons of Norrath, is the feel I am going for. And DB fits that role, regardless of rule set.

I would not mind if TOGC switched to 4E because I would only pick and choose what I needed anyways. What I liked most of DB was the Dungeon Generation table (which I have completely converted to cards) and the quests/missions. The Encounter tables I didn't use because I wanted to make 6 unique dungeon styles. Similar in fashion to TOGC's DB green skin expansion pack. Once I figure out my rule set, and choose my critter tables, i plan to convert them to cards too. Might also find a way to create a treasure table using cards that accounts for average party level... but that's later ;)

So right now, its a toss up... BECMI (with custom rules added) or 4E... Either way, TOGC can upgrade to 4E and I would be ok with it. In fact, if after I finish reading 4E and decide to make the switch, then TOGC would just make my job easier.

My 2 copper...



First Post
After a year or so of checking up for the new DB releases, I stopped checking back as frequently. I haven't dropped by that much here, probably should do so more often.

I don't like the 4E quote you mention Skarn. It seems wotc is really holding back the flow and spirit of the original game (house rules). I have not had a chance to read through the new rules yet.

As it stands I agree with Vokov. Even if DB goes 4E, I'll use it as I want to anyway, with modifications. Thinking back over my play sessions w/ DB and the new Microlite20/74 rule sets floating around, I'm thinking of using that to speed Up my dungeoneering sessions.

I've thought about switching to a card driven dungeon like Vokov, (Warhammer Quest style), as that seems much easier to flow with than chart lookups. Now that I hear you're having success with it, I'll probably do the same.

I'm thinking of ways to speed up DB, the way that DB sped up 3.x.

I'm really looking forward to the new DB product(s), and have been for some time.

Best, Elsairon


First Post
I have recently stumbled on Microlight 20 as well. I have put some thought into it, but find it might be a bit too generic. But i admit it was most definitely an interesting read.... Entire ruleset on a couple pages? wow... can't get much simpler than that! But I get the feeling that M20 was more for RP than mini based board game. Not enough difference between the classes...

If you try it with M20/74 I would like to here how it went...



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