Monday, January 9, 2023

The OGL, SRD, and a Few Days of Distractions - Why You Should Care About the Revocation of OGL 1.0

We have one more day of OSR Christmas and still need to wrap up with Day 12 Gifting, but I've been sleeping light and sitting at my desk the past few days, answering phone calls, text messages, PM on Facebook and Discord, and active on Facebook and Discord. 

This is what the OGL 1.1 fiasco has caused. Want to read OGL 1.1 yourself? Here's the link: http://ogl.battlezoo.com/ Be prepared, it ain't pretty.

Why is that? 

Well, 1.1 cancels 1.0 and 1.0a of the OGL. Like your OSR games? Expect many of them to be pulled from the market by the 13th of this month, the day we expect 1.1 to release and REVOKE the older OGLs. Perpetual no longer means what it means.

Oh, that applies to Pathfinder 1 and 2, Starfinder, Cepheus Engine (what? it's not based on a D&D SRD - but it does use the WotC 1.0 OGL), and others.

Lines of battle are being drawn. Companies big and small, dozens of employees and one-man shops, full-timers and those that supplement their income - all stand together in the face of WotC's likely unlawful action - but as many already know, the civil court system in the US isn't about who is right as much as who can outspend who.

As Alexander Macris (ACKS) put it so well earlier today: "In real-life courtroom dramas, the good guys don’t win. The rich guys win."

All publishers affected by the revocation of the 22-year-old OGL need to stand together. Gamers need to support these publishers. To paraphrase Bill Webb of Frog God Games: "Support your OGL publishers. We don't want your donations, simply spend your money and get value in return."

Some resources: 

Defend the OGL Discord Server https://discord.gg/MMq9GkNS  Go to the #what-to-do channel

Wizards/Hasbro - Do NOT Change the OGL License - Petition https://www.change.org/p/wizards-hasbro-do-not-change-the-ogl-license

The best resource is YOU. Comment on Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter. Get your voice into the discussion. Support your favorite game publishers and creators.


  1. The meme I saw with the unmasked villain as Lorraine was the best so far.

  2. Maybe someone could make a list of non-OGL roleplaying games that are still OSR? My own contributions to the hobby, Crimson Dragon Slayer D20 and Encounter Critical III, are compatible with D&D, but never used any kind of SRD or OGL.

  3. This is even more disastrous for a brick and mortar store. In one swoop, 50 percent or more inventory could be rendered illegal. This one move to kill publishers will kill the heart and soul of the hobby.
    Even if some publishers get past the OGL, ANY hard copy product will be illegal until new product can be made.
    That means serious revenue loss while new games are made. And with no revenue, how can a store order the new stuff?
    If you want Hasbro to stop this madness, get your local game store involved. They can effectively tell WoTC that this move will put them out of business.

  4. Any news on what Goodman Games will do?

  5. I am not a lawyer, just an interested party who has been listening to the lawyers. Cepheus Engine probably won't be affected, since WotC is not a party to the contract there, which is only between Mongoose, FFE, and the publisher of the item in question. There is possibly some merit to the idea that WotC holds copyright over the text of the OGL 1.0/1.0a, but I'm not sure that applies in the matter of modeling contractual language, and since WotC has never tried to enforce it on non-WotC-involved uses of the OGL language before despite being plainly aware of those uses, they would seem likely to lose it due to abandonment.


Tenkar's Tavern is supported by various affiliate programs, including Amazon, RPGNow,
and Humble Bundle as well as Patreon. Your patronage is appreciated and helps keep the
lights on and the taps flowing. Your Humble Bartender, Tenkar

Blogs of Inspiration & Erudition