D&D General No, Hasbro Is Not Selling D&D

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I wasn't going to comment on this rumour in article form--despite a 20-page-and-counting thread about it--but it seems some clarification is needed as it's all over social media and the usual click-bait YouTube channels.

First off, Dungeons & Dragons is not being sold. That's the short version.

WotC, including D&D, is Hasbro's most profitable division and, as many put it, it's 'golden goose'. Despite an article on Pandaily being entitled "Hasbro Seeks to Sell IP “DND” and Has Had Preliminary Contact with Tencent"--and much of which is a close copy of a recent YouTube video rumour--buried halfway down the article is the important paragraph:

A Tencent IEG (Interactive Entertainment Group) insider revealed that Tencent, represented by its overseas business department IEG Global, is in negotiations with the aim of acquiring a series of rights including the adaptation rights for electronic games such as DND.

That means they wish to license the D&D IP to make video games. WotC licenses the D&D IP all the time--that's why you see all those D&D lunchboxes and plushies and t-shirts and miniatures and foam dragon heads and, indeed, movies and video games. Licensing an IP is not buying an IP. Modiphius is licensing the Star Trek IP for their TTRPG; Modiphius hasn't bought Star Trek. I published the Judge Dredd TTRPG for a couple of years, but I didn't own the Judge Dredd IP.

Tencent, incidentally, owns 30% of Larian Studios, who made the recent Baldur's Gate 3 video game--under license, of course (Larian didn't buy D&D either). Tencent is a massive Chinese company known for venture capital, social media, mobile games, internet services, and more, and is one of the world's largest companies. Tencent Games is a division of the company. It has stakes in a lot of companies.

So what does WotC have to say? "We are not looking to sell our D&D IP". The following statement was sent to outlets who reached out for clarification:

We regularly talk to Tencent and enjoy multiple partnerships with them across a number of our IPs. We don't make a habit of commenting on internet rumors, but to be clear: we are not looking to sell our D&D IP. We will keep talking to partners about how we bring the best digital experiences to our fans. We won't comment any further on speculation or rumors about potential M&A or licensing deals."

So, to be clear, Hasbro is not selling D&D to a Chinese company. They are in--as always--talks to license their IP to various companies for various purposes, including electronic games, movies, and lunchboxes.
 

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payn

He'll flip ya...Flip ya for real...
@Whizbang Dustyboots @Hussar @CleverNickName Like I said, too much outside the scope of these forums. Just let's say that I'm not talking about randos who use the web to skirt the truth, but rather of people who are actively staking their lives on telling the truth, and some have actually given their lives because of it.
So, no other news organization will listen to them? Government agencies wont even consider them whistleblowers? Their only option is to go on youtube and follow common algorithm practices to get the word out?
 

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Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
IIRC, the story was originally picked up by a company called "Snow Leopard" which has very low journalistic standards and likely utilizes AI to scour the Internet for stories. It created an aggregate story and put it into a somewhat readable format. PanDaily got ahold of it, and the story ballooned to its current state.

Unfortunately, this is how things work now.

Rando makes up stuff.

At a certain point, an aggregator picks it up.

When one aggregator picks it up, a few others follow.

Later, a low-quality journamalism-like site then sees the aggregation, and it becomes a story.

And then the Rando can say, "Look, it's a story!"

Rinse, repeat.


I always like to employ a quote, which, roughly paraphrased, is as follows-

I never said he was taking ibogaine, I said there was a rumor in Milwaukee that he was. Which was true, and I started the rumor in Milwaukee. If you read that carefully, I’m a very accurate journalist.
-Hunter S. Thompson

As in many things, HST was ahead of his time.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Supporter
I jest but the same was true with TSR & WotC, and WotC and Hasbro.

No, it wasn't. WotC bought TSR for $25 million in 1997, which a basic inflation calculator tells me is about $45 million today.

Meanwhile, today, WotC represents an operating profit - not revenue, but profit - of about $203 million each year today.

So no, not the same at all. Back in 1997, TSR was cheap, because the company was failing, and WotC bought while the value of the company was low. Today, WotC is making a lot of cash, and the value of the company would be high.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Supporter
@Whizbang Dustyboots @Hussar @CleverNickName Like I said, too much outside the scope of these forums. Just let's say that I'm not talking about randos who use the web to skirt the truth, but rather of people who are actively staking their lives on telling the truth, and some have actually given their lives because of it.

So, no other news organization will listen to them? Government agencies wont even consider them whistleblowers? Their only option is to go on youtube and follow common algorithm practices to get the word out?

Nobody is staking their lives on D&D news folks. Let's move on...
 



I watch almost no general news. But I’m very curious about space and other science news. In that field we’ve got a guy named Anton Petrov, a Russian who used to be a teacher in Japan before making Youtubr his full time gig. He check arxiv and other places people post research not yet formally published and reads a bunch of journals, and does well-regarded daily videos with engaging but not clickbait titles and contents. (His signature opening, “Hello, wonderful person!”, is also great.)
Anton Petrov is a good example of the dangers of youtube. He purports to be a science reporter, but most of the stuff he posts is pseudoscience at best. He demonstrates how someone who is charming, well spoken and flattering can easily fill our heads with nonsense.
 

jayoungr

Legend
Supporter
A little late to the party, but where does all this YouTube salivating over the potential sale of D&D come from? I've seen it crop up in my feed every few months over about the last 3-4 years, and it always seems to come from channels that are most critical of the current direction of D&D. Is it pure wishful thinking? I get the feeling that they feel they will somehow have "stuck it to WotC" if D&D get sold--and I mean WotC specifically, not Hasbro.
 

Oofta

Legend
A little late to the party, but where does all this YouTube salivating over the potential sale of D&D come from? I've seen it crop up in my feed every few months over about the last 3-4 years, and it always seems to come from channels that are most critical of the current direction of D&D. Is it pure wishful thinking? I get the feeling that they feel they will somehow have "stuck it to WotC" if D&D get sold--and I mean WotC specifically, not Hasbro.

Negativity and shocking claims sell. 🤷‍♂️
 


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