I really don't think it should be called the "ORC license"

I think it works very well as an acronym and invokes fantasy right away (which they are trying to do). It also movies away from anything like "Dungeons" and "Dragons" so they are able to really separate it out. One issue might be that this license is going to be pretty expansive it looks like and will probably involve a lot of games where Orcs aren't even a thing. But I like orcs. I think a lot of people like orcs, and it will likely lead to a pretty cool logo. I think all the baggage and controversies with the term, are not really relevant to what they are doing here (that stuff is more about how orcs are handled mechanically and in the setting). Those are debates we can have for another day IMO

log in or register to remove this ad


ORC is a bad name because the hobby needs to move away from its blinding association and allegiance to fantasy games and tropes.
I agree, but I suspect that most companies looking for a replacement for the OGL is in the fantasy game space and therefore the name ORC as a marketing tool makes sense.

If they're going to use the name ORC I'd prefer to see a clean-room replacement base SRD named ORC let loose under a Creative Commons Share-alike license of some kind personally.

But I'd also like companies to be less precious about their game rules in general. Too many companies are just way overprotective of their rules and other people building on them in general.


#1 Enworld Jerk™
But I'd also like companies to be less precious about their game rules in general. Too many companies are just way overprotective of their rules and other people building on them in general.
My fantasy heartbreaker rules engine's main resolution mechanic is putting cans of spray paint in the dryer and turning it on. The last guy to run out of the house wins D&D.

And then everyone stands around him in a circle claps and says "Now, you truly have become the Dungeons and Dragons".


Chaotic Looseleaf
In my opinion, nicknaming the new open licensing effort the "ORC" just demonstrates the esteem the community has for the concept, and performs necessary pushback against the idea that it is intended to be hateful toward anyone, real or imagined.

But then I'm also totally fine with the "hegemony of fantasy," so your mileage may vary. There are tons of RPGs in a ton of formats across a ton of genres. The most successful are fantasy games, to the extent that broad public perception of our hobby is of people running around in the forest with foam weapons and fake pointed ears (which has never been a part of D&D, incidentally). It's fine.

In fact, out of respect for Erik Mona's wishes, I think I'll stop calling Pathfinder D&D and just start referring to 'supporting the hegemony of fantasy.'

"Hey, want to support the hegemony of fantasy this weekend?"

"Sure, I'll bring the Mountain Dew!"


I love Paizos and Kobold Press' work.

But it was pretty dumb to call it ORC.
Wizards already knocked the ORC prone with a creative commons license cantrip.
They are waiting for the right moment to dismiss it as the "racist license".
They can do that after they remove orcs from all their official material. Otherwise they're calling themselves racist.


I can see the consideration that OGL doesn't have a non-abbreviation meaning, so is "neutral' to any given genre. Whereas ORC has a definitive genre definition, making it less 'neutral'.

Personally, for example, I've been veering away from pure fantasy in both the games I play and the games I develop, and why I went to Starfinder, but even my Starfinder game and supplements I publish for, is a bit harder sci-fi than the Starfinder venacular. I haven't used orcs in my games in quite a while, since none of my players choose orc or half orc has a player race.


I think fantasy is the most prominent genre in roleplaying games because roleplaying games are fantasies, regardless of genre. Fantasy isn't just the most popular RPG genre -- it's the most popular genre genre. Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Star Wars and the MCU are all fantasies of one stripe or another and they absolutely dominate popular culture genre entertainment.

Complaining that RPGs are dominated by fantasy is no different than lamenting that all the big summer movies are super hero movies.

There are lots of lesser known games that aren't fantasy. Go play one.

Remove ads