Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) -Maker Wizards of the Coast’s (WotC) latest attempt to update the decades-old Open Game License (OGL) still includes the controversial statement that “Open Game License 1.0a is no longer an authorized license.” The news comes after the company’s first attempt to craft an OGL update with similar language (and other controversial changes) was met with controversy. Fans were widely outraged And Alienation from the creative community.
WotC says this is a “revocation of license” proposal. OGL v1.0a It will not affect any original content published under that prior license since it first appeared in the early 2000s and that such content will not need to be updated or re-licensed for compatibility with any new OGL. But posting no content After, after According to Update as formulated.
in Explanatory post on the D&D Beyond blogWotC Executive Producer Kyle Brink said WotC understands that the planned de-devolution is a “major concern” for the community. But, he added, it is a necessary step to enforce OGL’s new restrictions on illegal and/or hateful content, including “harmful, discriminatory, illegal, obscene, or harassing conduct,” as defined by WotC.
“We cannot use the protection options in 1.2 if someone could choose to post content that is harmful, discriminatory, or illegal under 1.0a,” Brink wrote. He added that ensuring an “overall gaming experience” in this way was a “very important” goal that was not included in the original OGL.
Whether WotC actually had the legal authority to completely take down the previous OGL version remains an open question, though. This is because the original OGL contains a clause that clearly states that players may “use any authorized version of this license to copy, modify, and distribute any open game content originally distributed under any version of this license.”
The original OGL does not contain any specific language that says it is non-nullable. But in The FAQ was posted when the original OGL was publishedWotC directly stated that “Even if the wizards make a change [to the license] that you did not agree to, you may continue to use an accepted earlier version at your option” A recent interview with board game site En WorldOriginal OGL architect and former WotC vice president Ryan Dancey said the company “doesn’t have the power to revoke a license to a version of OGL. If that’s the power we wanted to keep for Hasbro, we’d enumerate it in the license.”
Coming to the House of Commons
Aside from revoking OGL v1.0a’s license, the new draft language scales back many of the more controversial parts of the original leaked update, including plans to require revenue reports, collect royalties for the biggest content creators, and force relicensing to WotC for original content. The new draft language also explicitly states that the new license is “perpetual, non-exclusive, and irrevocable,” with only a few technical sections eligible for future modification.
D&DCore mechanics will be licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0), which WotC says “places absolutely no restrictions on how you can use this content.” Although this is not entirely correct, this License grants a “world wide, royalty-free, non-sublicensable, non-exclusive, irrevocable license” to such Content which it governs on the condition that Licensor gives WotC appropriate credit for its creation.
for the essence D&D content” published by WotC (for example, classes, spells, monsters, and other creative content made by the company), the new license will allow use, modification, and distribution with some restrictions. In addition to the restrictions on illegal and/or hateful content, as discussed above, The draft language prohibits anything that violates a third party’s IP address or that has official approval from WotC.
WotC said a survey allowing members of the public to comment on this new draft of the OGL will be publicly available sometime on Friday, and will be available through February 3. And this kind of iteration on comments “will stretch as long as he needs to…until we get it right,” Brink wrote.