Rumours: WotC Announcement Today; Insider Email Reveals Plans

There's a couple of rumours going round today. I cannot verify either, but I'm reporting them as most of the recent OGL rumours have proven true.

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First -- it is rumoured that today at 3pm ET Wizards of the Coast will make some kind of video statement about the current Open Game License situation. This rumour came from the folks at Roll For Combat who were the first to break the draft OGL scoop.

[[UPDATE -- This didn't happen!]]

Second -- an email has been circulating from an anonymous WotC insider. Again, I must reiterate I cannot myself verify this, so read this with that in mind, but the email says:


I'm an employee at WotC currently working on D&Dbeyond (DDB) and with D&D business leaders on the health of the product line. If you want I can provide proof of this.

I'm sending this message because I fear for the health of a community I love, and I know what the leaders at WOTC are looking at:

-They are briefly delaying rollout of OGL changes due to the backlash.
-Their decision making is based entirely on the provable impact to their bottom line.
-Specifically they are looking at DDB subscriptions and cancellations as it is the quickest financial data they currently have.
-They are still hoping the community forgets, moves on, and they can still push this through.

I have decided to reach out because at my time in WotC I have never once heard management refer to customers in a positive manner, their communication gives me the impression they see customers as obstacles between them and their money, the DDB team was first told to prepare to support the new OGL changes and online portal when they got back from the holidays, and leadership doesn't take any responsibility for the pain and stress they cause others. Leadership's first communication to the rank and file on the OGL was 30 minutes on 1/11/23, This was the first time they even tried to communicate their intentions about the OGL to employees, and even in this meeting they blamed the community for over-reacting.

I will repeat, the main thing this leadership is looking at is DDB subscription cancellations.

Hope your day goes well,

P.S. I will be copying and pasting this message to other community leaders.

If both rumours are true, I guess at 3pm ET today we'll find that out.
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I hope we're advancing, but I'm more cautious. I worry that the delays are simply time for refinements of the message of "we're not going to change anything" to try and minimize the damage they intend to do. I would really like to be wrong. Really, really, would like it.

I'm with you. If I could immediately cost WotC money, I would -- I'm boycotting their products, media, and the D&D brand until the OGL1.0(a) is irrevocable, but that doesn't send a message now.


The answer is no.

The OGL 1.1 tries to "de-authorize" the 3e SRDs, including Modern.

It only allows the 5.1 SRD, but in a way that can terminate at any moment.


It FORBIDS access to ALL FUTURE content after 5.1.

The purpose of the OGL 1.1 and the goal of Hasbro-WotC is to destroy EVERYTHING beyond DnDBeyond.
I think you misunderstood the question, which was whether there would continue to be printed books as opposed to making D&D online-only.


Well, lookie.... Paizo Announces System-Neutral Open RPG License

The ORC has pie!

Great to see this. Just wondering how many other publishers will jump on board. What we probably don't need is a dozen different OGL replacements.

The one I'm still waiting to hear from is Goodman Games. I'm going to really miss the OAR's...and want to know what their plans are for the Dark Tower Kickstarter.

"Paizo does not believe that the OGL 1.0a can be “deauthorized,” ever. While we are prepared to argue that point in a court of law if need be"

Oh boy shots fired.

That clears some things up. Go Paizo (that's not something I say myself saying... a horrifying 14 years ago how the hell is it 14 years since 4E came out? Goddamn).


Limit Break Dancing
Well, lookie.... Paizo Announces System-Neutral Open RPG License

Well well, would you look at that.
What a wild and wacky coincidence.

It's 2008 all over again! Immerse yourself in the experience by listening to Taylor Swift's self-titled album, checking out WALL-E on Disney+, and rewatching videos of the Beijing Summer Olympics on YouTube!
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You could just post it to the D&D Beyond Forums which WotC owns, all those get seen by mods who then tell the community manager and from there likely up the food chain. Or you could use their customer service number, politely.

Don't have D&DB now would I visit or join it now. And I don't tweet.

I did email Hasbro the following:

Dear Hasbro:

I’ve been following with increasing concern the actions of your subsidiary, Wizards of the Coast, as regards their main hobby gaming products. Not only have they been driving their bread and butter product, Magic the Gathering, into the ground, but now they are taking action to destroy two decades of brand goodwill for their other brand, Dungeons and Dragons, by attempting to revoke the Open Gaming License that has been so key to the growth of the D&D brand and role playing game industry.

I’ve been a D&D player, and more importantly, consumer and Dungeon Master, since the early 1980s. I’ve played every edition of D&D except 4th (which was itself a consumer travesty). I rejoiced with the publication of the Open Gaming License for what it did to grow the hobby, and though I have more D&D products than I can ever use, I have continued to buy WotC-produced D&D game product, to include every published book and supplement for 3rd, 3.5, and 5th edition, as well as video games, novels, and other D&D branded media and merchandise.

But the proposed OGL 1.1 goes to far. If implemented – if WotC attempts to kill the OGL1.0(a), which should be made irrevocable – I’m out. I have plenty of D&D for the rest of my life. I’ll never purchase another D&D game product, a D&D branded product, or D&D media again.

And I’m taking my entire 8-person gaming group with me.

Please convey to your leadership and board of directors that WotC’s direction with the OGL is killing the Golden Goose that has gown and supported the D&D brand, and that they should not only reverse course but confirm the irrevocability of the OGL1.0(a)


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