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Thread: An OGL for FA

  1. #1
    Keeper of Secrets Otog's Avatar
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    An OGL for FA

    After listening to the Tome Shows coverage of the Green Ronin seminar at GenCon, I was a little disappointed that no one asked if we will see an OGL or similar license in the future for Fantasy Age.

    Has anyone maybe heard anything or is this but a pipe dream?

  2. #2
    Defender of the Word
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    Re: An OGL for FA

    Honestly, it'd probably be a poor move on GR's part right now, as described in another thread about this topic. GR isn't as big as WotC or Paizo, so I don't believe they have the output speed to get enough things out before the market got flooded with other people's stuff. There's only one book out right now. Let's wait for them to figure out where they want to go with it and let them protect their financial interests too.

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    Keeper of Secrets Yora's Avatar
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    Re: An OGL for FA

    Mutants and Masterminds has some kind of limited license that I think would work pretty well.
    “Hither came Conan the Cimmerian, black-haired, sullen-eyed, sword in hand, a thief, a reaver, a slayer, with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandaled feet.”


    Working on the Ancient Lands campaign setting for Fantasy Age.
    Spriggans Den - RPGs and Sword & Sorcery

  4. #4
    Inceptor
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    Re: An OGL for FA

    Submitting something to Green Ronin for publishing would be just as easy. AGE system is never going to be as big as d20, sorry to say. I asked a few months back in one of my gaming groups if they played the Dragon Age system and most of the people there were suprised that Dragon Age had a tabletop game.

  5. #5
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    Re: An OGL for FA

    Quote Originally Posted by silverthorne View Post
    Submitting something to Green Ronin for publishing would be just as easy. AGE system is never going to be as big as d20, sorry to say. I asked a few months back in one of my gaming groups if they played the Dragon Age system and most of the people there were suprised that Dragon Age had a tabletop game.
    I mentioned this game to a gaming buddy of mine and he also had never heard of the Dragon Age RPG.

  6. #6
    Keeper of Secrets Yora's Avatar
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    Re: An OGL for FA

    Which is part of why I think some kind of semi-open license might actually benefit the company quite a lot. Fantasy Age is my favorite rules system with rules that are much better than anything else I've found so far. But the basic rulebook does not strike me as a product that has a huge market. I think the people who are most interested are like me and already have an idea for something they want to run and only need a rules system to run it with. I don't think anyone will see the book and think "Oh boy, I want to run this!" and you wouldn't pitch a campaign to your players by telling them "We're going to play Fantasy Age!" (and then they go all "Yay, I always wanted to do this!")
    The real money makers for Green Ronin are probably going to be much more focused games like Dragon Age, Blue Rose, and the Freeport setting. To get a generic system with a generic monster book to a large customer base, I think you need to appeal to the Homebrewers and Do It Yourselfers. And from my experience with d20 games, the popularity of such a system is tied directly to a few dedicated fans creating a small number of well made products with very small print runs or even just digital distribution only. To keep an RPG that is not D&D in the public conscious, you need either a constant stream of new products or some very active fans. Otherwise you quickly become forgotten.

    The d20 OGL didn't really become a problem for WotC until they discontinued that edition and did not offer a similar option for their next one. It was the inability to switch from small scale third party support for 3rd edition to 4th edition that led to the creation of Pathfinder.
    The license for Numenera is quite interesting in that it allows you to create your own content with official blessings, but only for profits limited to $2,000. Once you go above that you have to negotiate an individual licensing agreement. Which would be wonderful for people creating free content, if there wasn't a $100 registering fee.

    The other thing with the d20 OGL is that it might perhaps have been a bit too open in regard to what content can be reproduced and altered. The System Reference Document is so extensive that you can make entire games completely independent from D&D 3rd edition. The only thing they excluded was XP calculation, but that turned out to not stop anyone. Being more limited in that regard could still ensure that all customers have to get through the primary company by buying at least the Basic Rulebook.

    What they are going to do with it and how is entirely up to them, but I think there is a very wide range of options that probably would benefit them in the long run.
    “Hither came Conan the Cimmerian, black-haired, sullen-eyed, sword in hand, a thief, a reaver, a slayer, with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandaled feet.”


    Working on the Ancient Lands campaign setting for Fantasy Age.
    Spriggans Den - RPGs and Sword & Sorcery

  7. #7
    Keeper of Secrets Kythkyn's Avatar
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    Re: An OGL for FA

    Quote Originally Posted by silverthorne View Post
    Submitting something to Green Ronin for publishing would be just as easy.
    That's not a bad idea, really.

  8. #8
    Defender of the Word
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    Re: An OGL for FA

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    The d20 OGL didn't really become a problem for WotC until they discontinued that edition and did not offer a similar option for their next one.
    There was a reason for that lack of option (and for some of the push to make 4e radically different) ... because the OGL had already become a problem. The original hope was to that 3rd party companies would thrive on a thin margin of the one product type, adventures, that a big company like WotC/Hasbro had no interest in doing.

    But savvy 3rd party companies (i.e. Green Ronin and others) saw where the real profit was along with WotC, which was class and setting books. So as WotC tried to put out 4e, they basically said "You can't do both editions, chose one and abide by that version of the OGL," hoping that people would jump onto the latest edition and then everyone else would fade away.

    Well that didn't happen.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    It was the inability to switch from small scale third party support for 3rd edition to 4th edition that led to the creation of Pathfinder.
    Probably even more devastating was the full on development of the retro-clones. Games like Castle & Crusades, Labyrinth Lord and DCC went from cute side companies to a whole movement. While Pathfinder went 3.75, retro-clones had a DIY and nostalgia thing going for it.

    WotC was stuck in vise.

    Sure Pathfinder gets the glory out as a single financial success that continued the mechanics of 3.5 and gave WotC a black eye, but the distributed efforts (and profits) of the retro-clones that might have made WotC bleed.

    You can see that 5e's design goals were for simplification and more backwards compatibility with 2e and before instead of trying to out Pathfinder Patherfinder.

    So far, it seems that embracing those retro-clone design ideas -- and retro clone audience -- put D&D back in the running.

    None of this is a bash on any of these games. People have fun playing them and all the designers had passion in making these games. I'm just saying there was just a bigger picture than Pathfinder's deserved success.

  9. #9
    Inceptor Freeport Pirate's Avatar
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    Re: An OGL for FA

    We won't be using the OGL, but will be doing something similar to the Savage Worlds program. We still need to figure out the details, so this is something that will happen next year.

    Chris Pramas
    Green Ronin

  10. #10
    Keeper of Secrets Yora's Avatar
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    Re: An OGL for FA

    That sounds great. Just what I was hoping for.
    “Hither came Conan the Cimmerian, black-haired, sullen-eyed, sword in hand, a thief, a reaver, a slayer, with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandaled feet.”


    Working on the Ancient Lands campaign setting for Fantasy Age.
    Spriggans Den - RPGs and Sword & Sorcery

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