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Author Topic: Big Developments in the ORC License  (Read 7852 times)

GeekyBugle

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #30 on: January 18, 2023, 12:46:24 PM »
So you say that magic comes from demons or from nature (as the "Native Americans" and others seemed to believe), while miracles come from the gods.

It's not something WotC can claim, just their fluff.

THEIR specific schools of magic, that is correct, create your own.

Vancian magic, that's correct, create your own system. Create your own spell list with new names where needed, different fluff and mechanics.

Others have done it and WotC has done shit, BECAUSE they know they can't do shit. I'm speaking of games not under the OGL like WWN/SWN, what has wizards done? NOTHING.
So, you’re agreeing with me in the most belligerent way possible? Alright. You do you.

You just agreed to my entire point though… a lot of the OGL products do have all those things stacked atop each other… Paizo especially despite some mechanical changes has races (sorry, ancestries) and classes and spells in specific schools at specific levels that basically amount to “Gary Porter and the Immortality Elixir” (including a magical scar on his ankle that aches whenever Lord Mortis who killed his parents is near) when taken a combined whole.

Stripping that out to a degree that is actually free and clear is going to take more than just rewriting some fluff text in your own words… it means for more specific concepts deciding which particular elements of the “concept stack” are most important to retain and which you will need to change to avoid too similar a stack and what you want to change those elements to.

Care to explain this? First time I read about it and Google ins't helping, is this from some law or legal precedent?
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Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

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GeekyBugle

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #31 on: January 18, 2023, 12:47:50 PM »
As to my point about the arcane/divine magic divide… angels and demons are of a kind in most religions and the distinction is whether you are relying upon good or evil powers of basically the same type (God could drop a pillar of fire and the Devil could cure your illness… neither happened often, but that was due to a difference in the grantor’s intent not “this magic is fundamentally different and can’t do that”).
Rolemaster has always divided magic that way arcane/divine or essence/channeling.
Also their dragons are different colors.  Red green, white, orange, black, metallic, etc.

Those two things are concepts/ideas not expression, thus not protected.

BEFORE D&D used them? Or they didn't bother to sue them?
Quote from: Rhedyn

Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

GeekyBugle

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #32 on: January 18, 2023, 12:51:18 PM »
THEIR specific schools of magic, that is correct, create your own.

Can they?

Serious question?

D&D didn't introduce schools until 2nd edition, but C&S had schools, most with the same names, a decade earlier in the 70s.

Again, Hasbro lawyers could snow yours, but would they? At some point, trying to claim things with clear prior art could be a pyrrhic victory. You might bankrupt the person you're suing but establish the prior art enough that you can't win in the future.

Yeah, but in the end I'm still broke, unless someone is willing to sign a binding contract and create a fund to pay for any such legal case with a clause included they'll keep paying until the case is resolved in my favor (meaning going to the supreme court if needed) and pay for my lost sales until I can manage to get Hasbro to do so I'm not risking it.
Quote from: Rhedyn

Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

GeekyBugle

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #33 on: January 18, 2023, 12:53:10 PM »
The lich and phylactery were invented by D&D, so you'll need to rename that too. J.K. Rowling helpfully coined "horcrux," and the monster could be renamed to "koschie," "greater dead adept," "Kostagian mage," or whatever. Maybe "dwimmerlich" if you really need to retain that particular syllable, and you can argue that this is a play on Tolkien's dwimmerlaik.

While I'm not up to fighting Hasbro lawyers, neither originates with D&D. Both are older terms from core D&D sources used in D&D in a specific way. Lich for an animated corpse with intelligence is from Clark Ashton Smith and phylatctery is a religious item in Judaism and Christianity as well as a name used for some amulets from animist traditions.

More importantly, trying to claim things like those invites scrutiny that Hasbro lawyers might not like on what they are claiming copyright or trademark on.

The names are safe to use, their combination and the changing the phylactery to something else isn't.
Quote from: Rhedyn

Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

Steven Mitchell

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #34 on: January 18, 2023, 12:57:26 PM »
Exactly, because I don't have the kind of money needed to fight them, the safest thing to do is to scrub EVERY single D&Dism from your work.


Not exactly.  Because the whole problem is that they will claim something as a D&Dism that isn't.  So, sure, all the obvious D&Disms, the ones that really are, those need to be avoided entirely.  Keeping those in is just asking for trouble.

At the other extreme, there are things like having "gambeson" or "brigandine" as an armor type.  Far as I know, D&D has never had those embedded in the rules, and with the possible exception of historical source books, may not have ever used the terms.  But it doesn't matter, as those can't be restricted anymore than "claymore" or "human" could be.

For the vast stuff in the middle, it's more about the individual author's comfort with risk.  The closer you get to the first category, the more risk you run.  Me, I'm renaming "Fighter" and keeping "Wizard".   Because my "wizard" bears only a vague resemblance to theirs as an academically-minded spell caster, but I don't have similar spell mechanics or leveling scheme, my wizards fight differently than theirs, my wizards aren't tied to "arcane" magic or even a stand-in for it, yada, yada, yada.  My very martially-oriented class is much more capable than a D&D fighter, is built using very different mechanics, etc., but that label just screams D&D to me in a way I don't care to tempt--and it's kind of bad terms anyway.

Moreover, I was in the process of doing a revision to my rules anyway, as another round of playtest feedback gets resolved.  There were bits and pieces left as a nod to D&D, as a homage to a game that has given me so many years of enjoyment.  Between the normal revision, removing the nods, and continuing to try to streamline and name things what they are, a few terms are getting swapped.  It's making my game better.  Changing "wizard" to something else wouldn't make it better. 
« Last Edit: January 18, 2023, 12:59:45 PM by Steven Mitchell »

DocJones

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #35 on: January 18, 2023, 12:58:34 PM »
As to my point about the arcane/divine magic divide… angels and demons are of a kind in most religions and the distinction is whether you are relying upon good or evil powers of basically the same type (God could drop a pillar of fire and the Devil could cure your illness… neither happened often, but that was due to a difference in the grantor’s intent not “this magic is fundamentally different and can’t do that”).
Rolemaster has always divided magic that way arcane/divine or essence/channeling.
Also their dragons are different colors.  Red green, white, orange, black, metallic, etc.

Those two things are concepts/ideas not expression, thus not protected.

BEFORE D&D used them? Or they didn't bother to sue them?
It doesn't matter before or after.   
You can't copyright words or short phrases. 
You can't copyright concepts or ideas.

You can trademark names. 
For example Beholder, Gauth, Carrion Crawler,  Displacer Beast, Githyanki, Githzerai, Mind Flayer (Illithid), Umber Hulk, Slaad, Yuan-Ti are trademarks.



BoxCrayonTales

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #36 on: January 18, 2023, 01:01:02 PM »
The lich and phylactery were invented by D&D, so you'll need to rename that too. J.K. Rowling helpfully coined "horcrux," and the monster could be renamed to "koschie," "greater dead adept," "Kostagian mage," or whatever. Maybe "dwimmerlich" if you really need to retain that particular syllable, and you can argue that this is a play on Tolkien's dwimmerlaik.

While I'm not up to fighting Hasbro lawyers, neither originates with D&D. Both are older terms from core D&D sources used in D&D in a specific way. Lich for an animated corpse with intelligence is from Clark Ashton Smith and phylatctery is a religious item in Judaism and Christianity as well as a name used for some amulets from animist traditions.

More importantly, trying to claim things like those invites scrutiny that Hasbro lawyers might not like on what they are claiming copyright or trademark on.

The names are safe to use, their combination and the changing the phylactery to something else isn't.
Exactly. Using them in their original dictionary contexts is safe because those are public domain, but using lich only for an undead wizard king and phylactery for his horcrux is the sort of thing that Hasbro might try to sue you for. Numerous fantasy books influenced by D&D have used it and I wouldn't put it past Hasbro to sue them for it no matter how frivolous. If you want to be safe, then you'd have to use lich for any corpse whether animated or not and something like soul jar or horcrux for the soul jar.

J.K. Rowling hasn't sued anyone for using the word "horcrux" for soul jars in their works. I've seen it used in Supernatural and NOS4A2. And quite frankly Rowling isn't the sort of person to engage in a frivolous lawsuit like that anyway.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2023, 01:02:38 PM by BoxCrayonTales »

GeekyBugle

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #37 on: January 18, 2023, 01:05:41 PM »
Exactly, because I don't have the kind of money needed to fight them, the safest thing to do is to scrub EVERY single D&Dism from your work.


Not exactly.  Because the whole problem is that they will claim something as a D&Dism that isn't.  So, sure, all the obvious D&Disms, the ones that really are, those need to be avoided entirely.  Keeping those in is just asking for trouble.

At the other extreme, there are things like having "gambeson" or "brigandine" as an armor type.  Far as I know, D&D has never had those embedded in the rules, and with the possible exception of historical source books, may not have ever used the terms.  But it doesn't matter, as those can't be restricted anymore than "claymore" or "human" could be.

For the vast stuff in the middle, it's more about the individual author's comfort with risk.  The closer you get to the first category, the more risk you run.  Me, I'm renaming "Fighter" and keeping "Wizard".   Because my "wizard" bears only a vague resemblance to theirs as an academically-minded spell caster, but I don't have similar spell mechanics or leveling scheme, my wizard's fight differently than theirs, my wizard's aren't tied to "arcane" magic or even a stand-in for it, yada, yada, yada.  My very martially-oriented class is much more capable than a D&D fighter, is built using very different mechanics, etc., but that label just screams D&D.

Moreover, I was in the process of doing a revision to my rules anyway, as another round of playtest feedback gets resolved.  There were bits and pieces left as a nod to D&D, as a homage to a game that has given me so many years of enjoyment.  Between the normal revision, removing the nods, and continuing to try to streamline and name things what they are, a few terms are getting swapped.  It's making my game better.  Changing "wizard" to something else wouldn't make it better.

Your examples are obvious stuff that no judge would ever agree (except maybe in the third world if you bought him) are copyrighted.

We're talking more about the magic system, spell lists and stuff like that.

Agreed, I changed the Fighter to Warrior, Wizard is still a wizard, Cleric is a Templar (and fuck whoever claims it's "offensive"), BECAUSE I wanted to do so way before all this happened, but my first game out has nothing to do with any of that, zero magic and my "Psionics" aren't called that nor do they work like in D&D, there's also no Miracles.

For me this is more of an academic discusion and for future games/products.

But I guess we'll see what Hasbro does when the Black Flag project comes out, about PF and other bigger fish who could at least try and fight them, because if they do nothing we can safely use whatever terms that are there since they have renounced the right to deffend it.
Quote from: Rhedyn

Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

GeekyBugle

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #38 on: January 18, 2023, 01:09:11 PM »
As to my point about the arcane/divine magic divide… angels and demons are of a kind in most religions and the distinction is whether you are relying upon good or evil powers of basically the same type (God could drop a pillar of fire and the Devil could cure your illness… neither happened often, but that was due to a difference in the grantor’s intent not “this magic is fundamentally different and can’t do that”).
Rolemaster has always divided magic that way arcane/divine or essence/channeling.
Also their dragons are different colors.  Red green, white, orange, black, metallic, etc.

Those two things are concepts/ideas not expression, thus not protected.

BEFORE D&D used them? Or they didn't bother to sue them?
It doesn't matter before or after.   
You can't copyright words or short phrases. 
You can't copyright concepts or ideas.

You can trademark names. 
For example Beholder, Gauth, Carrion Crawler,  Displacer Beast, Githyanki, Githzerai, Mind Flayer (Illithid), Umber Hulk, Slaad, Yuan-Ti are trademarks.

Since we agree that hasbro can use lawfare. It does matter in two different ways:

Before, means it didn't originate with them.
After means TSR recognised it wasn't something they could copyright.

So it is a possible deffense.
Quote from: Rhedyn

Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

DocJones

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #39 on: January 18, 2023, 01:45:11 PM »
Since we agree that hasbro can use lawfare. It does matter in two different ways:

Before, means it didn't originate with them.
After means TSR recognised it wasn't something they could copyright.

So it is a possible deffense.
Anyone can file a motion to dismiss and then motion to sanction and fine those attorneys stupid enough to file such a frivolous law suit over things which simply cannot be copyrighted.
Or of course you could release nothing or cower like a pussy without clearing everything with the scary cartel known as Hasbro.


GeekyBugle

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #40 on: January 18, 2023, 01:56:07 PM »
Since we agree that hasbro can use lawfare. It does matter in two different ways:

Before, means it didn't originate with them.
After means TSR recognised it wasn't something they could copyright.

So it is a possible deffense.
Anyone can file a motion to dismiss and then motion to sanction and fine those attorneys stupid enough to file such a frivolous law suit over things which simply cannot be copyrighted.
Or of course you could release nothing or cower like a pussy without clearing everything with the scary cartel known as Hasbro.

Yeah, fuck you too.
Quote from: Rhedyn

Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

BoxCrayonTales

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #41 on: January 18, 2023, 02:12:28 PM »
Somebody seriously tried to argue that D&D never invented anything original that spread into the wider fantasy genre. I wouldn't believe it if I didn't see it with my own eyes.

PulpHerb

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #42 on: January 18, 2023, 02:22:05 PM »
Yeah, but in the end I'm still broke, unless someone is willing to sign a binding contract and create a fund to pay for any such legal case with a clause included they'll keep paying until the case is resolved in my favor (meaning going to the supreme court if needed) and pay for my lost sales until I can manage to get Hasbro to do so I'm not risking it.

This is why we need a fund and backers (I think you suggest OSF or EFF in a different thread).

Hasbro is relying on "you can't afford to defend so we can't lose these lawsuits that have no merit". A standing fund means they have two choices:

1. Go for and risk losing a lot more than most people are willing to defer on before OGL 2.0
2. Stand off in an RPG version of MAD.

DocJones

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #43 on: January 18, 2023, 02:22:30 PM »
Anyone can file a motion to dismiss and then motion to sanction and fine those attorneys stupid enough to file such a frivolous law suit over things which simply cannot be copyrighted.
Or of course you could release nothing or cower like a pussy without clearing everything with the scary cartel known as Hasbro.

Yeah, fuck you too.
Come on and man up.  Don't fear the wotzi.  :-)
Start using words like arcane, kobold, lich, abjuration, illusion, conjuration, enchantment, red dragon, black dragon, ad infinitum in all your works.
Steal all the concepts and ideas from D&D for yourself.
I find it both sad and hilarious that some here use the word "fluff" to refer to what is actually protected creative expression and are hand wringing over what is not protected.

Ghostmaker

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Re: Big Developments in the ORC License
« Reply #44 on: January 18, 2023, 02:26:35 PM »
Anyone can file a motion to dismiss and then motion to sanction and fine those attorneys stupid enough to file such a frivolous law suit over things which simply cannot be copyrighted.
Or of course you could release nothing or cower like a pussy without clearing everything with the scary cartel known as Hasbro.

Yeah, fuck you too.
Come on and man up.  Don't fear the wotzi.  :-)
Start using words like arcane, kobold, lich, abjuration, illusion, conjuration, enchantment, red dragon, black dragon, ad infinitum in all your works.
Steal all the concepts and ideas from D&D for yourself.
I find it both sad and hilarious that some here use the word "fluff" to refer to what is actually protected creative expression and are hand wringing over what is not protected.
Stop being a fucking retard.

It's real easy to talk big on a message board. How fucking tough will you be when some Hasbro process server drops a big steaming lawsuit on your doorstep? You'll need a lawyer -- which costs. And the point Geeky is making here is that Hasbro knows they won't be able to prove ownership easily (if at all). So they'll drag it out, as long as possible, to drain your funds and maybe force bankruptcy.

While it's not quite the same, I strongly recommend you review 'SLAPP' lawsuits, and why some states actually passed laws against that bullshit.