Free League is Demiplane’s Latest Nexus

Following its recent Pathfinder 2E and World of Darkness announcements, new tabletop tools platform Demiplane has revealed that Free League’s array of games will be joining them.

78A063DA-FC0E-4D41-BC9D-6228422BD922.jpeg


Demiplane’s Adam Bradford (co-founder of D&D Begind) about the new endeavor and shows a trailer.


With D&D Beyond’s owner Fandom working hard on its acquisition Cortex Prime, along with various licensed properties for use with tabletop RPGs, such as Tales of Xadia, Demiplane looks to be setting itself up as a competitor by powering everything except D&D.


12E81524-4297-4CBE-B3C9-FE9E1D566902.jpeg


 
Last edited:

log in or register to remove this ad

Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

dirtypool

Explorer
Cool, thanks Adam. Really excited to see what you guys are going to unveil next, looking forward to the Pathfinder tools and keeping my fingers crossed for Chronicles of Darkness alongside the World of Darkness tools already announced.

Edited for clarity.
 
Last edited:

log in or register to remove this ad



dirtypool

Explorer
Music, movies, television, video games, ebooks, audiobooks. It's already happened in almost every avenue of media. Heck, it's happened in previous editions of D&D already.
The only thing that needs to happen is expanding some content to "digital only," then you're back to a DDI subscription that can get pulled at any time and when a company goes under or changes direction, you can't use your content anymore.
I can still walk into a store or order CD's, DVD's game disks, print books online. Hell vinyl came back from the dead. The inclusion of new options has not yet decreased what we have available to us.

Yeah 4e did have a digital subscription, but that didn't render the game unplayable if you weren't a subscriber. You could still go to your FLGS, buy a physical book, and play the game. D&D Beyond hasn't prevented play of 5e to date, I've used it for record keeping but my shelf is still full of 5e books.
 

Retreater

Legend
So what's the alternative you'd prefer? That everybody be denied these tools?
That everybody who purchases the content gets to keep it in perpetuity. That if you buy a book on DND Beyond that you get a PDF of the said book, which you can use even if the service goes under.
It's like if you subscribe to Netflix, have to pay the monthly subscription fee, and then are required to buy individual movies or series to watch piecemeal, then you don't get to watch those movies if Netflix loses the rights, or you stop paying the subscription fee, etc.
4E's lasting impact in the OSR community and current player base is certainly lessened because of the digital tools subscription that we can no longer access. It's largely a dead system because of the reliance on the subscription model.
As I stated before, I have no problem with people using DND Beyond, Demiplane, or other services. I'm sure it's helpful for some.
But I'll tell you I'm worried that when GW decides to be done with Cubicle 7 that I won't be able to play WFRP anymore on Foundry. Or the instant 6E comes out, DND Beyond will be shuttered and you can't look at your digital copies anymore and 5e is pulled from Roll20.
As more and more games transition to online play (especially due to the pandemic), we're quickly giving up the past idea "I can pull this old book from my shelf and play with my friends anytime I want."
I haven't played a physical RPG or rolled an actual die in nearly 2 years. I rely on online games. The hobby could end for me with a single piece of paper being signed in a corporate office.
 

schneeland

Adventurer
With D&D Beyond I agree that not having PDFs of the books is a big minus. However, if I get that right, with Demiplane - at least for the Paizo stuff - it's something that comes on top and you also get a discount if you have previously bought the PDFs from Paizo.
 

dirtypool

Explorer
Those are two diametrically opposed arguments you're making. Should digital services honor purchases you make in perpetuity? Of course. Are digital materials replacing physical media? No they aren't.

4e wasn't ONLY its digital tools subscription, and it isn't a dead system because of the subscription model. It's mostly a dead system because it was polarizing and divisive. If a bunch of OSR players want to start playing 4e they can gain access to 4e physical materials relatively cheaply.

The fear that services like Foundry will turn off support for vtt content of out of print editions is valid I guess, but the number of out of print editions that still get supported would tend to indicate otherwise.

The pandemic is not removing the EXISTENCE of physical RPG books and dice, while you rely on online games - those games still exist in physical forms. Your experience of not using a physical book or physical dice is not a universal experience, it's yours. For every group playing with digital tools on foundry, there's another playing on Zoom with books and dice.
 

Staffan

Legend
The fear that services like Foundry will turn off support for vtt content of out of print editions is valid I guess, but the number of out of print editions that still get supported would tend to indicate otherwise.
I very much doubt they'd remove access to stuff they've directly licensed. For instance, I don't see support for Pathfinder 1st ed going away from any of the VTTs any time soon. The problem could be when you're dealing with second-degree licensing. For example, Cubicle 7 is producing Warhammer 4e under license from GW. That license has an expiration date. Once Cubicle 7 loses the Warhammer license, so does Roll20, Foundry, and whatever other VTTs that have licensed it from them.

For Fria Ligan, that would be highly relevant for Aliens, and for the upcoming Blade Runner and The One Ring as well. I'm not sure what their licensing relationship with Simon Stålenhag (the artist whose art inspired Tales from the Loop) is, so it could be an issue there too, and maybe for Mutant Year Zero (I believe they were originally licensing it from Paradox, but they might have bought it outright now).
 

Retreater

Legend
4e wasn't ONLY its digital tools subscription
Correct. But there is a lot of official content you can't get anymore that was only available on the subscription. The system itself was designed to be "unwieldy" if not partnered with the digital tools.
If a bunch of OSR players want to start playing 4e they can gain access to 4e physical materials relatively cheaply.
Maybe (though the cost has been going up significantly). But they can't play it. Not effectively, anyway. It's not supported on any VTT. All of the tools have been shut down. Even the website was created with Silverlight, which can't be used on computers anymore.
The fear that services like Foundry will turn off support for vtt content of out of print editions is valid I guess, but the number of out of print editions that still get supported would tend to indicate otherwise.
I guess there could be a fan module of "something like" WFRP created in that event. But GW could take down all the modules I've purchased, and my campaign would cease to exist. The only thing that would remain would be a blank page that would allow me to use a dice bot.

If I have PDFs, they last as long as I have my computer. If the PDFs are ever pulled I cannot re-download them. That's been known to happen. But it's still more reliable than a subscription service where you have to sign into a paid account to read the game books you have purchased.
Maybe it will be here in a year, maybe not. Maybe you have to purchase everything again because your group is moving to a different service. Maybe your subscription to DND Beyond won't be needed because you've started playing PF2, but you lose access to your 5e collection.
It's not a good future ahead of us. It's something I've been very involved with in my day job as a librarian for a decade now.
 

dirtypool

Explorer
I very much doubt they'd remove access to stuff they've directly licensed. For instance, I don't see support for Pathfinder 1st ed going away from any of the VTTs any time soon. The problem could be when you're dealing with second-degree licensing. For example, Cubicle 7 is producing Warhammer 4e under license from GW. That license has an expiration date. Once Cubicle 7 loses the Warhammer license, so does Roll20, Foundry, and whatever other VTTs that have licensed it from them.
It doesn't seem likely that they would turn off support for the existing product that was purchased through the service. Yes, they won't sell new content, but the virtual tool assets created while Cubicle 7 has the license are likely to remain available for customers who have already purchased them.
 

dirtypool

Explorer
Correct. But there is a lot of official content you can't get anymore that was only available on the subscription. The system itself was designed to be "unwieldy" if not partnered with the digital tools.
I wouldn't know, my table and I played the game perfectly fine without ever once touching the digital tools.
Maybe (though the cost has been going up significantly). But they can't play it. Not effectively, anyway. It's not supported on any VTT.
This presupposes that all of the hypothetical players are exclusively online players. If you assume that all players play exclusively online using digital toolkits then yes it looks like doom and gloom for industry, but as in the previous statement you're failing to consider other peoples experiences.
I guess there could be a fan module of "something like" WFRP created in that event. But GW could take down all the modules I've purchased, and my campaign would cease to exist. The only thing that would remain would be a blank page that would allow me to use a dice bot.
Or, more likely Foundry would continue to support the modules you've purchased but would cease selling them to new players. See how there's always an alternative.
Maybe it will be here in a year, maybe not. Maybe you have to purchase everything again because your group is moving to a different service. Maybe your subscription to DND Beyond won't be needed because you've started playing PF2, but you lose access to your 5e collection.
Or I can rely on the physical materials that I keep pointing out are still in existence.

A lot of the examples you give aren't making a whole lot of sense, purchasing individual shows from Netflix or losing 5e content because you're playing Pathfinder are things that just don't happen.
It's not a good future ahead of us. It's something I've been very involved with in my day job as a librarian for a decade now.
I'm puzzled because somehow, every time I have this argument online the person arguing against democratization of content and doomsaying the death of the industry claims to be a librarian. I know no librarians in real life who argue this, I am married to a librarian and have worked in Higher Ed for 24 years.

You work in the place where the books still are, why do you argue as if they've gone away?
 

Dire Bare

Legend
I can still walk into a store or order CD's, DVD's game disks, print books online. Hell vinyl came back from the dead. The inclusion of new options has not yet decreased what we have available to us.

Yeah 4e did have a digital subscription, but that didn't render the game unplayable if you weren't a subscriber. You could still go to your FLGS, buy a physical book, and play the game. D&D Beyond hasn't prevented play of 5e to date, I've used it for record keeping but my shelf is still full of 5e books.
You didn't need a D&D Insider subscription to play 4E, true.

But once WotC decided to no longer support the service, your digital investment went "poof". However, it was a subscription based model, you didn't purchase individual titles like you do on D&D Beyond for 5E. In retrospect, as a D&D Insider subscriber, I'm not angry with WotC that I can no longer access the service. But I do think that it was the wrong model. I don't think I'll go for a subscription-for-content model again.

I much prefer purchasing individual titles on D&D Beyond, but . . . . if/when this service changes or dies, will I lose access to my library? Probably, and that will upset me. PDFs aren't really eternal either, but at least I can download them independently of the retailer and keep back-up copies.
 

Music, movies, television, video games, ebooks, audiobooks. It's already happened in almost every avenue of media. Heck, it's happened in previous editions of D&D already.
The only thing that needs to happen is expanding some content to "digital only," then you're back to a DDI subscription that can get pulled at any time and when a company goes under or changes direction, you can't use your content anymore.

Generally speaking, print books still dominate ebooks. And all you need to do is swing by nearly any RPG Kickstarter and look at the number of print backers vs. PDF-only backers. With very rare exceptions the latter are the minority, usually by a wide margin. Digital may have eaten physical's lunch in movies and music, but print is holding strong.

EDIT: Whoops. Forgot to include this link:

 


Retreater

Legend
It doesn't seem likely that they would turn off support for the existing product that was purchased through the service. Yes, they won't sell new content, but the virtual tool assets created while Cubicle 7 has the license are likely to remain available for customers who have already purchased them.
Are you unfamiliar with Games Workshop? They could get a random hair and decide to end all of it at the drop of a hat? They end licenses for breakfast.
There's a ton of compatibility issues. This is something I've run into with Fantasy Grounds, actually. So let's say Foundry updates to v9.2. The last officially supported version that Games Workshop allows of Warhammer Fantasy is Foundry v8.9. Poof, you can no longer access your Warhammer on Foundry. That's all it takes. Your campaign, all of the modules you've purchased - all of it instantly worthless.
This presupposes that all of the hypothetical players are exclusively online players. If you assume that all players play exclusively online using digital toolkits then yes it looks like doom and gloom for industry, but as in the previous statement you're failing to consider other peoples experiences.
This also presupposes that online play has seen unprecedented growth, and many publishers are thinking this is the way of the future. A game system that has no foot in that door is not setting itself up for success. The idea of their being a "post-COVID" massive boom in in-person RPG playing is unlikely to happen, whereas we will continue to see growth in online play.
If you're regularly playing in-person with friends at a game store, pub, convention, you are likely in the minority.
Or, more likely Foundry would continue to support the modules you've purchased but would cease selling them to new players. See how there's always an alternative.
They don't have that choice. The company can hit them with a C&D and end it immediately, like WotC did with their DND Beyond importer.
A lot of the examples you give aren't making a whole lot of sense, purchasing individual shows from Netflix or losing 5e content because you're playing Pathfinder are things that just don't happen.
They make perfect sense if you make an attempt to follow the examples.
D&D Beyond is a subscription service. You also have to purchase individual books from them. You don't pay the subscription (or if the site closes) you lose the individual books you've purchased. The same is true with Roll20.
So if I choose to stop playing Roll20 and migrate to Fantasy Grounds or Foundry, I've lost everything I've purchased (in addition to the subscription fee).
Is this hard to understand?
I'm puzzled because somehow, every time I have this argument online the person arguing against democratization of content and doomsaying the death of the industry claims to be a librarian. I know no librarians in real life who argue this, I am married to a librarian and have worked in Higher Ed for 24 years.
I assure you I am a real librarian, and have been employed as such since 1996. I have had extensive training in eBooks, digital downloads, and copyright. It's scary. Books can get pulled from digital holdings for any reason, by the whim of any publisher. They can charge whatever they want, charge libraries per circulation of the item, "expire" the books to force us to repurchase them annually (usually at a cost greater than a physical book), charge exorbitant platform fees to access the digital content (and if those aren't paid, the digital collection is lost), withhold content based on geographic location/local politics. It's not nearly as free or democratic as you might imagine.
 

dirtypool

Explorer
Are you unfamiliar with Games Workshop? They could get a random hair and decide to end all of it at the drop of a hat? They end licenses for breakfast.
Yes and that doesn’t in fact relate to my statement that I find it unlikely that Foundry would turn off access to content you paid for quite that easily. It’s not a subscription, you don’t repurchase the content each month. Stop conflating subscriptions and digital purchases
There's a ton of compatibility issues. This is something I've run into with Fantasy Grounds, actually. So let's say Foundry updates to v9.2. The last officially supported version that Games Workshop allows of Warhammer Fantasy is Foundry v8.9. Poof, you can no longer access your Warhammer on Foundry. That's all it takes. Your campaign, all of the modules you've purchased - all of it instantly worthless.
Sure it’s a possibility, I’ll stipulate. Will you acknowledge it is not the ONLY possibility
This also presupposes that online play has seen unprecedented growth, and many publishers are thinking this is the way of the future.
Unprecedented growth =/= dissolution of print media content. You’re skipping form A straight to
A game system that has no foot in that door is not setting itself up for success.
A “foot in that door” is not an abandonment of the traditional content pipeline
The idea of their being a "post-COVID" massive boom in in-person RPG playing is unlikely to happen, whereas we will continue to see growth in online play.
Again, growth in online play is not a decrease in physical media objects. I have no clue why that concept is not landing with you, because I’ve said it a lot
If you're regularly playing in-person with friends at a game store, pub, convention, you are likely in the minority.
No I’m playing with friends online without using digital tools.
They don't have that choice. The company can hit them with a C&D and end it immediately, like WotC did with their DND Beyond importer.
Don’t speak to the outcome of contracts you’ve not read, that’s entirely speculative
They make perfect sense if you make an attempt to follow the examples.
D&D Beyond is a subscription service. You also have to purchase individual books from them. You don't pay the subscription (or if the site closes) you lose the individual books you've purchased. The same is true with Roll20.
Yes you can also use Roll20 without purchasing their digital files and relying on physical books. Stop presenting these things as only working the way that supports your argument when it in fact works multiple ways
So if I choose to stop playing Roll20 and migrate to Fantasy Grounds or Foundry, I've lost everything I've purchased (in addition to the subscription fee).
Is this hard to understand?
Yeah, but that was your choice to platform shift. How hard it is to understand the you are at fault for that problem and not the games publisher.
I assure you I am a real librarian, and have been employed as such since 1996.
But you said 10 years before, funny how the duration got significantly longer.
In the role you describe you clearly understand the concept of a standard pdf file that you can do with as you will and a proprietary file format that is behind a login.

How many TTRPG publishers provide the former and how many the latter? The answer is almost all the latter and very few the former.
The sky is not falling
 
Last edited:

Retreater

Legend
Not trying to start a thread war, but wanted to address a few statements.

Yes and that doesn’t in fact relate to my statement that I find it unlikely that Foundry would turn off access to content you paid for quite that easily. It’s not a subscription, you don’t repurchase the content each month. Stop conflating subscriptions and digital purchases
Foundry could (and have) delete modules based around content they don't have a license to provide. GW could pull the modules for WFRP and forbid its sale, updating, etc on the site. The very next time there's a Foundry update, your existing modules you've downloaded could be incompatible. You could no longer play that game or use the purchased content on that service. This has happened with Foundry, Roll20, and Fantasy Grounds already.

Sure it’s a possibility, I’ll stipulate. Will you acknowledge it is not the ONLY possibility
It's not the only possiblity, and it's not necessarily going to happen tomorrow, but it WILL happen. Companies will move on from their present editions. Certain VTTs will fold (see Astral). When you purchase rights to use something online, you're not getting an evergreen product. You're getting a license to use it temporarily on the terms of the platform.

Unprecedented growth =/= dissolution of print media content. You’re skipping form A straight to
It's not dissolved, but it is growing less practical to play in person. If I'm the only person to think this way, please let me know.

Again, growth in online play is not a decrease in physical media objects. I have no clue why that concept is not landing with you, because I’ve said it a lot
Is every person purchasing online AND print? If not, then online must be effecting print to some extent.
I can guarantee there are people who purchase some stuff only on D&D Beyond who (if not given the choice) would've purchased a print copy.

Don’t speak to the outcome of contracts you’ve not read, that’s entirely speculative
The specific instance I cited with the D&D Beyond Importer on Foundry as a Patreon service was a fact, documented with a C&D.

Yes you can also use Roll20 without purchasing their digital files and relying on physical books. Stop presenting these things as only working the way that supports your argument when it in fact works multiple ways
Yes, but if you want to use your purchased content, you have to subscribe, putting a second paywall between you and your content.
Yeah, but that was your choice to platform shift. How hard it is to understand the you are at fault for that problem and not the games publisher.
That's true. So you do admit that you don't own your purchases, that they can be pulled from you even through no fault of your own? (Like if Fantasy Grounds changes to a new operating system, forces you to pay a new fee if you want to continue to use your content? Roll20 increases its fees for you to access previously purchased content? A game company decides to switch platforms to go from VTT A to VTT B?)

But you said 10 years before, funny how the duration got significantly longer.
Wait? I said what? Nope, I've always been a librarian since 9/96. I don't know if you're misreading something or confusing me with someone else, but trust me, this close to retirement I'm not forgetting how long I've been working there. ;)

How many TTRPG publishers provide the former and how many the latter? The answer is almost all the latter and very few the former.
Yes. Most publishers use PDFs - except, you know, WotC, which is kind of a big deal.
The main point is subscription to online tools, databases, articles, VTT content. That's stuff that can be yanked away at a moment's notice. And I can say that since I've purchased some stuff on Roll20, that's material that's as good as gone as soon as 1) I stop subscribing; or 2) WotC pulls their products [possibly to support their upcoming proprietary VTT]; or 3) Roll20 closes shop; or 4) Roll20 changes their programming to not run on my computer; or 5) their services go down because of peak traffic; or 6) I have a random Internet outage.
 

dirtypool

Explorer
Not trying to start a thread war, but wanted to address a few statements.
You kind of are, but okay.
GW could pull the modules for WFRP and forbid its sale, updating, etc on the site. The very next time there's a Foundry update, your existing modules you've downloaded could be incompatible. You could no longer play that game or use the purchased content on that service. This has happened with Foundry, Roll20, and Fantasy Grounds already.
Sure, you see that and see that it’s a problem that makes you leery of those services. It makes me leery of Games Workshop
It's not the only possiblity, and it's not necessarily going to happen tomorrow, but it WILL happen.
Yeah, a possibility and something that “WILL happen” are two separate things. You are at this point being a bit hyperbolic in your support of the digital tools are dooming the hobby argument.
Companies will move on from their present editions. Certain VTTs will fold (see Astral). When you purchase rights to use something online, you're not getting an evergreen product. You're getting a license to use it temporarily on the terms of the platform.
Yes, but those are specifically digital tool kits for play. I have been maintaining that the physical reality of this game still exists and will continue to. You’re arguing that Orange Juice is tart, I’m arguing apple butter is great on toast. We’re neither of us in danger of not being able to order breakfast.
It's not dissolved, but it is growing less practical to play in person. If I'm the only person to think this way, please let me know.
No it isn’t. The practicality of it has not changed. The point I keep stating and you keep running right past is that the makeup of the industries physical products has remained largely unchanged.
Is every person purchasing online AND print? If not, then online must be effecting print to some extent.
If you scroll up you will see another person referencing that kickstarters have more physical copies backed that digital only. DTRPG sells a large quantity of POD content.
I can guarantee there are people who purchase some stuff only on D&D Beyond who (if not given the choice) would've purchased a print copy.
I can guarantee you there are people who purchase exclusively print copies of D&D products. The one group does not invalidate the other.
The specific instance I cited with the D&D Beyond Importer on Foundry as a Patreon service was a fact, documented with a C&D.
Yes they did that to the Patreon service importing D&D content. But you claimed that because they did that, Games Workshop could do the same - and since you are in no way privy to the details of Foundry’s contract with Games Workshop you absolutely can’t say what is or is not possible.
Yes, but if you want to use your purchased content, you have to subscribe, putting a second paywall between you and your content.
No there would just be the one paywall, and this is in no way a logical response to my saying that it is possible to use D&D Beyond without buying a single book from them.
That's true. So you do admit that you don't own your purchases, that they can be pulled from you even through no fault of your own? (Like if Fantasy Grounds changes to a new operating system, forces you to pay a new fee if you want to continue to use your content? Roll20 increases its fees for you to access previously purchased content? A game company decides to switch platforms to go from VTT A to VTT B?)
That was not what I said. Your example was if you migrated from Foundry to Roll20 you would have to buy your content again, but guess what - the Foundry content would still be available. It isn’t that you don’t own your content it’s that you cannot take it with you from one service to another. You would still own both and it would be your decision that placed you in that situation.
Yes. Most publishers use PDFs - except, you know, WotC, which is kind of a big deal.
Which means most publishers product is available to you in a format that won’t perish. You can buy a physical copy or a pdf and play your game without ever touching a digital tool set if you don’t want.

There is no group of content ninjas that break into your house at night and steal your access to either of those two content options.
The main point is subscription to online tools, databases, articles, VTT content.
The main point is that those are optional items that do not make the game unplayable if they are not available.
 

It's going to be interesting to see if everything except D&D is a viable business plan. I wish them well. I have some reservations about D&D's VTT future when we get to their 2024 plans so I'm glad to see options.
 

BadEye

Chief Development Officer at Demiplane
It's going to be interesting to see if everything except D&D is a viable business plan. I wish them well. I have some reservations about D&D's VTT future when we get to their 2024 plans so I'm glad to see options.
"Viable" is a relative threshold, and it's always going to be lower for a small company. We don't have to see D&D numbers to be very happy with the results.

And personally, I would much rather be associated with an open playground than a walled garden, so we're making something we believe in regardless.
 

Related Articles

Visit Our Sponsor

Level Up!

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top