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The Open Game License (or OGL) is a public copyright license that may be used by tabletop role-playing game developers to grant permission to modify, copy, and redistribute some of the content designed for their games, notably game mechanics. However, they must share-alike copies and derivative works.

Language of the license[]

The OGL describes two forms of content:

Open Game Content (or OGC)

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Product Identity (or PI)

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Product Identity is content covered by normal copyright.

Using the OGL[]

By attaching this license game developers allow the use of their OGC and any additional content they may have indicated to be OGC. This use is perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive as long as the use is accompanied by a copy of the OGL with all the Copyrights updated to credit the contributors of all OGC that was used. All used OGC is to be indicated with a notice.

Licensees are prevented from distributing, copying, or modifying PI, and may not use the contributor's name for the purposes of marketing or advertising, unless permission is acquired through a separate license or agreement with the holders of the PI.

Finally, the OGL requires attribution be maintained by the copying of all copyright notices from OGC a licensee is copying, modifying or distributing. This requires that the license notice itself must be altered by adding all copyright notices to the Section 15 part of the license.

Background[]

It was published by Wizards of the Coast in 2000 to license their Dungeons & Dragons game as the System Reference Document, or SRD, in a move spearheaded by Ryan Dancey.[1] It is commonly used with the d20 license to allow individuals, amateur and professional companies and groups to publish the SRD and derivative works under the d20 System trademark.[2] In June 2008, Wizards of the Coast transitioned to a new, more restrictive royalty-free license called the Game System License (GSL), which is available for third-party developers to publish products compatible with Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition.[3][4] The GSL is incompatible with the previous OGL, however the OGL is non-revokable, and remains in widespread use.[3]

Those individuals, groups and publishing companies that license their works under the OGL and similar documents are sometimes collectively referred to as the "open gaming movement".[5]

See also[]

References[]

External links[]

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