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Two Cities of Brass?

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Nightfall

Sage of the Scarred Lands
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Ceasar's Wife. . . .

rpace said:


I don't think you're comprehending any of this -- perhaps it's really just outside your ability to understand the ethical issues involved.

They're the bad guys because they aren't changing the name.

~R
I understand ethics quite well. I think YOU however don't. You cry foul because it seems like they "STOLE" something that didn't belong to them. BUT neither did the ORIGINAL city that Kuntz stole. Nor has Tolkiens heirs taken umbrage at D&D when they put out their "elves" "dwarves" and "halflings" which they have copyrighted. That's an ethical and legal issue but no one talks that much about this.
 

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Pale

First Post
I dunno, man. Necro is part of the White Wolf machine and WW is hardly "little."

You have a misconception. White Wolf prints and sells Necromancer Games products. Clark Peterson is the publisher of Necromancer Games, the buck stops with him.
 

Pale

First Post
And rpace, you are coming off as extremely condescending in this, perhaps if you left off your insulting one-liners your argument would be seen in a better light.
 

Nightfall

Sage of the Scarred Lands
Pale said:



You have a misconception. White Wolf prints and sells Necromancer Games products. Clark Peterson is the publisher of Necromancer Games, the buck stops with him.
Pale is correct. WW only controls, (to a small degree) the Scarred Lands, Ravenloft and now Everquest. Necromancer and Malhavoc are independent entities, merely working under the S&SS banner for distribution and printing purposes.
 

Nightfall

Sage of the Scarred Lands
Pale said:
And rpace, you are coming off as extremely condescending in this, perhaps if you left off your insulting one-liners your argument would be seen in a better light.
Don't worry about it Pale. He can be as condescending as he likes. Just proves to me that some people from the "old days" have a very large chip on their shoulders while others, (like Monte Cook, Clark Peterson, Bill Webb and Chris Pramas) are good DECENT people. Oh and so is Hal Greenberg! :)
 

rpace

First Post
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Ceasar's Wife. . . .

Nightfall said:


I understand ethics quite well. I think YOU however don't. You cry foul because it seems like they "STOLE" something that didn't belong to them. BUT neither did the ORIGINAL city that Kuntz stole. Nor has Tolkiens heirs taken umbrage at D&D when they put out their "elves" "dwarves" and "halflings" which they have copyrighted. That's an ethical and legal issue but no one talks that much about this.
I'll attempt to disabuse you of your belief that you understand ethics.
Please refer to:
http://www.dictionary.com/search?q=ethics

You seem stalled on the notion that if it isn't illegal it's ethical. You've made absolutely no attempt to debate any of my points. You merely keep restating that the City of Brass is public domain material -- and not even in those terms.

You're discussing ownership and IP rights without even using the proper language, while I'm discussing the right thing to do.

Honestly, it seems like you're having a discussion with someone other than me, even though you're responding to my messages.. I never claimed NG had stolen anything from RJK -- I have repeatedly pointed out they are acting unethically in this matter.

I'm not disputing that NG has pretty broad legal support to pursue publishing City of Brass -- I'm saying it's unethical.

How many more ways can I write this so that it finally sinks in?

The "good guys" don't shoot the bad guy in the back. So, even if RJK was a complete villain in their dealings, what they're doing with CoB is creatively and professionally shooting him in the back.

That's about as simplistic as I can make the argument for you: they're doing something good guys don't do.

. . . . .

And your youth, by the way, is telling in your ignorance of the real legal history between TSR and the Tolkien heirs. Of course, no one talks much about this since it occured way back in the 70s.

~R
 

baseballfury

First Post
Nightfall said:


Pale is correct. WW only controls, (to a small degree) the Scarred Lands, Ravenloft and now Everquest. Necromancer and Malhavoc are independent entities, merely working under the S&SS banner for distribution and printing purposes.
Necro and Malhavoc are part of Sword and Sorcery Studios, which is White Wolf. You guys make it sound like having the full weight of White Wolf behind the SSS companies is hardly worth mentioning. I'm sure there are plenty of other d20 companies who wouldn't mind "only" having their products printed, sold, and distributed by a company of WW's size!

I see SSS stuff in Barnes and Noble. Pied Piper, to my knowledge, hasn't released so much as a PDF yet. Saying that Pied Piper and Necro are somehow on the same level is a distortion of reality.
 

rpace

First Post
Pale said:
And rpace, you are coming off as extremely condescending in this, perhaps if you left off your insulting one-liners your argument would be seen in a better light.
It's hard not to be condescending to anyone whose response to "That's the wrong thing to do" is "Yeah, but they can get away with it".

~R
 

Nightfall

Sage of the Scarred Lands
The RIGHT thing to do, is also A LEGAL thing to do. Murder is both illegal AND immoral. And yes City of Brass IS public domain SINCE Alll Kuntz work WAS based on MYTH. You however don't seem to grasp such a concept.

"The right thing to do" is to MAKE products that people want, regardless of what you might consider a faux pau(sp)

The good guys DIDN"T shoot anyone in the back. Kuntz did. I, like everyone else, wanted to see SOME kind of version of City of Brass, a city filled with Efreeti that has existed in both D&D AND myths far longer than has been in print. So just because Kuntz feels wounded, and by default you do, because they "didn't do an ethical service" to one man that wrote a little piece of TSR history WHEN he's had the chance to do so many times...and failed. Just because of that, you want to damn Necromancer Games...I find even more petty and unethical than anything else you're written.

I think your problem is you believe too much in the value of ONE man's work over THAT which is the right of the consumer, which is WHAT this business is really about. Creating GOOD solid products for people to enjoy, NOT just yourself. The self-love of the 70s and 80s has to end, if this genre and business is to survive. However you, in your right and zeal to be "ethical" probably can't see much beyond protecting your own butt.

As for my youth, hey you can make as much of an issue as you want. I'm still pretty sure I'm on solid ground considered I did a senior thesis on Tolkien. There was never any mention of him being upset, much less Christopher, (who has been an opponent of many things of his father's works being in the public eye), about TSR using such ideas, or even "stealing them". So please, keep going. I got all night to care. If ever.
 

Nightfall

Sage of the Scarred Lands
baseballfury said:
Necro and Malhavoc are part of Sword and Sorcery Studios, which is White Wolf. You guys make it sound like having the full weight of White Wolf behind the SSS companies is hardly worth mentioning. I'm sure there are plenty of other d20 companies who wouldn't mind "only" having their products printed, sold, and distributed by a company of WW's size!



And yet Green Ronin, Mongoose, and others do quite well. I see them in stores as well, Waldenbooks along with my local gaming store.

baseballfury said:
I see SSS stuff in Barnes and Noble. Pied Piper, to my knowledge, hasn't released so much as a PDF yet. Saying that Pied Piper and Necro are somehow on the same level is a distortion of reality.
No, but then Pied Piper, to my knowledge, hasn't done many prints. I do know Green Ronin and the rest have. Should we say that's unfair because they came in late in the game? I don't think your reasoning is holding much water.
 

Nightfall

Sage of the Scarred Lands
rpace said:

It's hard not to be condescending to anyone whose response to "That's the wrong thing to do" is "Yeah, but they can get away with it".

~R
Well be as condescending as you like because it's not about them getting away with it. It's about them DOING right by the CONSUMER, instead of being at the mercy of one or two fat cats.
 

mythusmage

First Post
Just Because of this Thread...

...I'm going to do my own version. City of Brass: The Efreet of Dragon Earth.:p

Anybody else thinking of doing a City of Brass book? (I can see it now, 100 copies of City of Brass, each done by a different publisher.:))

Alan Kellogg, author of Title Theft d20. The RPG of intellectual non-piracy.
 

Darrin Drader

First Post
Again, I'll cry out to the moderators who seem to be on vacation this weekend. CLOSE THIS THREAD ALREADY. The two sides are not going to come to an agreement, and this thread was started to undermine the respect of a publisher. It's a PR thing that isn't good for either side or the community, and in the end all that will come of it is hurt feelings on both sides.

Now, having said that, I am a freelancer. I could list my past projects, but I'm not going to unless someone really wants me to do so. Now, as a freelancer, if I had been contracted by a publisher to do a project, and then we had a falling out, whether the issues that started the contention originated with me or not, I would fully expect that publisher to go on with the project with or without me... even if the project was my idea originally... even if I had been designing for thirty years and had a cult following of hero worshippers with chips on their shoulders... and especially if the title of the book was property of no one except for someone who has been dead for hundreds, if not thousands of years.

And as for WotC trying to claim the City of Brass as IP - aint going to happen unless they can also try to say that they own all of the Arabian Nights because they did a setting called Al-Qadim. It is patently ridiculous.

Now please, lets just agree to disagree on this, and have the moderators close this threat before Nightfall and rpace give each other virtual bloody noses.
 
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Dol Umroth

First Post
After reading this thread and most of the discussions on this topic on the NG and PPP boards I just want to voice my opinion on this. I'll not judge any comments of board members, although I am tempted to do so since some of the posts on this thread and on the other discussions surely seem clouded by high-running emotions. But this wouldn't help, it would just fan the flames.

IIRC the City of Brass has been announced by Necromancergames a long time ago and - as I understand it - it was a very important part of their Product Line from the very beginning. Since RJK and NG initially agreed (AFAIK) to first publish the "Maze" - series and (for whatever reason) their business relationship ended before even the last adventure of the series was published, it was clear that no RJK "City of Brass" would ever be published by NG. But since, as I understand it, it was Clark's and Bill's dream to publish a City of Brass at some time it is IMO totaly O.K. to do it now - with a different writer. It was NG to have the idea to publish "City of Brass" for 3e - as I understand it they contacted him if he wanted to do it, not the other way round. I'm sure that if he had initially declined to do it for NG, they had published it a lot earlier and with a different writer - and no one would object.
So it's not unethical to call it "City of Brass".
This name isn't copyrighted in any way, and since NG's dream was - in the first place - to publish an adventure/sourcebook called "City of Brass", why should they refrain from doing so? Just because RJK wants to publish it in his own right? I fail to understand what exactly is unethical about the whole matter. (As a matter of fact IMO the only thing coming close to "unethical" mode of conduct in the whole matter is that RJK disclosed personal e-mail correspondence between him and Clark. But I won't comment any further on this, since if Clark himself doesn't do that - who am I to do it.)

...just my 2 cents...
 

Horacio

LostInBrittany
Supporter
I also humbly ask the moderators to close this thread, things are getting way too personal for my tastes...

I think here we have two different ways of seeing life, moral and/or ethics. And noone of us is going to change it. My views align with Nightfall, Dragongirl and others, but I can also understand the other view. What I cannot understand or respect is the crossing of personal remarks, and everyone here will finish doing it if we let this continue...

So please, close it once forever...

No signature because it's not Iconic Jester speaking, is a tired Horacio
 

LcKedovan

First Post
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Ceasar's Wife. . . .

rpace said:


I don't think you're comprehending any of this -- perhaps it's really just outside your ability to understand the ethical issues involved.

They're the bad guys because they aren't changing the name.

~R
Well STOP PRESS! Maybe Rob should also change the name since it has already been used in Arabian Mythology. :rolleyes:

And in FACT! While we are at it, lets ask Jim from Bastion to change thier Norse Gods .pdf since the "Norse Gods" are a historical mythology.... maybe we can go one step further and not let any single publisher use a name that has historical roots. Oh my! Two publishers are releasing a product called "Yggdrasil" one of them should have to change the title from a "historical mythological name" to something else... gee how about "That Big Norse Tree"... puuuuhhhllease... morality and ethics play absolutely NO part in any of this debate when it comes to the name of "City of Brass". The name is public property. Period. End of sentance. Debate over the name "City of Brass ended. Case closed.

Hell... maybe Micheal Moorcock should be invited to this debate since he has a previously published book called "City of Brass".


-W.
 

Turlogh

Explorer
I fail to see how changing the name of the product changes the ethics, legalities, etc. of the matter. Would that just then make the arguments one of semantics?
If NG changed the name to "The Metropolis of Copper and Zinc" everybody would still know its really the City of Brass that they said they wanted to do years ago but with a different author.

I personally look forward to both but especially to NGs because it will be a printed book and will come out roughly the time they say it will.

If RJK is offended he should buckle down and write the best damn City of Brass he can to show us all why his vision can be the only one.
 

PatrickLawinger

First Post
Re: Ceasar's Wife. . . .

rpace said:
Bunch of <snips>

Every freelancer entering into a new relationship with NG will have to wonder if they will end up with the same result.

Clark Peterson pointed out he has no intention of using any of Rob Kuntz's material for NG's City of Brass -- apart from the title that used to be a part of the Rob Kuntz package.

It's been said that NG has every right to publish a D&D book with that title, but, if they are an ethical company and Clark Peterson is the stand-up guy most people say he is, then they should dump the title. A book about the City of Brass doesn't have to carry that title.

Right now, they appear to be stealing Rob's project -- by their mere intention to publish a CoB book, they undermine Kuntz's ability to find an alternate publisher or successfully publish it himself.

I'm sure NG would prefer to not appear to be stealing someone's project.

Richard Pace
I happen to be a freelancer working for Necromancer Games. I have found Clark and Bill to be two of the most ethical and easy to work with individuals in the business.

The idea that they should change the name on a project because their first choice author bailed on them is ludicrous. Clark wanted to do this project and his first choice as author was Rob. That didn't work out. If someone proposes a project to me, and I go on to something else, I am pretty confident they will find someone else for their project.

"The City of Brass" was around long before Rob did anything with it. Numerous role-playing games, card games, and computer games have a City of Brass of some sort. This is what happens when you have a mythological location that inspires the imagination of many different people.

Calling it anything other than the "City of Brass" is ludicrous. As for Rob's ability to sell his version, I doubt it would make much difference as both products are slated to be quite different and I am guessing Rob's timeline would put his product out long after Necro's is released.

Necro is not stealing someone's project, they proposed this project to Rob. Hard to steal something you proposed doing in the first place.
 

Nightfall

Sage of the Scarred Lands
Baraendur said:
Now please, lets just agree to disagree on this, and have the moderators close this threat before Nightfall and rpace give each other virtual bloody noses.
Thanks for considering my nose Darrin. Btw, you are a good man too. :)
 

Nightfall

Sage of the Scarred Lands
Re: Re: Ceasar's Wife. . . .

PatrickLawinger said:
Necro is not stealing someone's project, they proposed this project to Rob. Hard to steal something you proposed doing in the first place.
I know this. You know this. But some others don't. In any case, Darrin, Horatio and the rest are right, this is where we'll just have to agree to disagree. In any case, I'm alright with that. I just like to say I do NOT feel morally superior to the people I've been arguing with. But I DO feel lucky to have the support and camerire of everyone here.

Btw BBF, no hard feeling okay?
 

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