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Forging our Future
Jan 17, 2023

These past few weeks have been tumultuous for the TTRPG industry, to say the least. We at Ghostfire Gaming owe our success to our fans and supporters throughout the years, and so we want to communicate our thoughts on recent events to the community.

We’ve been listening closely to the broader conversation as it unfolds, ensuring we have all the information to pave the road ahead for our team and our community.

To our legion of backers: we’re committed to our customers, protecting what we’ve created and delivering on what we’ve promised. We can assure all our backers the projects below currently in production will remain 5e products (under the OGL v1.0a), unless circumstances beyond our control say they can’t be. 

These include:

  • Arora: Age of Desolation – Ghostfire Gaming
  • Sebastian Crowe’s Guide to Drakkenheim – The Dungeon Dudes  
  • Fables Season 3: Agents of the Empire – Ghostfire Gaming  
  • Sunken Isles – Eldermancy


Our next Kickstarter, Grim Hollow: Valikan Clans, is planned for release under v1.0a as the content is 90% complete. We await further clarification on the OGL before committing to this, but that is our intention.

5th Edition has been at the core of our products to date, for which we will always be grateful. However, until we hear more definitive answers about what the future of the OGL will hold, we can’t agree to a new license that would negatively impact us or our supporters.

Going forward we believe, like so many of our friends have stated, that open gaming makes the TTRPG publishing space stronger, resilient, and agile for creators of all levels. The principles of the open gaming license have helped expand the fanbase, foster amazing work and talent, and are central to the long-term survival of TTRPG’s. 

Because of the chaos surrounding the exact terms of a new OGL, we have no choice but to make alternate plans for our future products. We’d love to continue making 5e-compatible products, but within the chaos is born new opportunities and innovations. We will be talking to those in the Ghostfire family and other third-party friends to find the best way forward with our remarkable community and the hobby we love. Whether that is finding a different Path, or sailing under a new Flag – it’s still being discussed, but it will likely involve the Open RPG Creative License (ORC). This new system-agnostic license is a work in progress. However, the direction is clear and a strategy is in place with a huge network of talented individuals participating.

The wellbeing and fulfilment of our team, freelance community, partnerships, backers and broader community are of the utmost importance to us, and we will continue to prioritize this in all that we do. As we journey on, we shall provide updates as we know more. But for now, we extend our sincerest thanks to each and every one of you for your steadfast support of Third Party Publishers.

Finally and with love, many in our team have worked for and with WOTC–especially members of their design team. We’d ask our supporters to please respect those working at Wizards of the Coast, as they are part of our community and we do not condone abuse of any kind.

As we journey on, we shall be providing more updates. For now we extend our sincerest thanks to each and every one of you for your support and we can’t wait to keep adventuring with you in all that comes next.

13 Comments

  1. Brendan Raichel

    I’m still saddened by the corporate greed that has divided this community. I’m appreciative of all the 3rd party creators out there, and there is no reason for WotC to have done what they have done. I hope this blows over, because I want to continue to see more content released for my favorite system, but I totally support and understand your position until we hear more. Hoping that you all don’t completely abandon D&D, assuming that WotC pulls their heads out of their asses.

    Reply
  2. Dennis Lemckert

    Congratulations on your strategic choice.
    Though I think we (my group and me) will keep playing 5e for quite a while, as we’re running a pretty long campaign, I’d be more than happy to aid Ghostfire in converting the Grim Hollow setting to another system when you guys switch to ORC.
    Just start a Kickstarter and I’m in. As I have done with the entire GH setting.

    Reply
  3. David

    Thanks for communicating with us. We’ll support you through whatever happens.

    Reply
  4. Kai Solace

    Thank you for keeping us updated, while also making sure you took time to gather enough information to be accurate. Y’all were one of the first groups I thought of when all this started going down, hoping you’d be okay. My group started Pirates of the Aetherial Expanse literally last week, and the Expanse is genuinely one of my favorite settings. I love your creativity and boundless imagination – wherever you go next, I’ll stay along for the ride!

    Reply
  5. Patrick C

    Man, this situation sucks and I hate that you and every other 3rd Party 5e creator have to deal with it. The good news is that at least the TTRPG community will survive. Too many people love it too much to let corporate greed kill it off. It’s obviously going to have to change, even if Hasbro and WOTC walk back their changes. But we’re a tough community that managed to thrive in the midst of a global pandemic. We can weather this. Here’s hoping that whatever comes next brings joy to even more people. Godspeed.

    Reply
  6. Ian Taylor

    Path. Flag. Heh, I see what you did there. 😉 I stand with you regardless of which path you take.

    Reply
  7. Domingo Silva

    The draft of the new OGL just came out. I am unsure how I feel about it. I’m wondering if you guys will have another response to this new draft and if you will be able to share it with us? Love the Dark Hollow setting!! Keep up the great work!!

    Reply
  8. Yan Duranceau

    I’m in full support of whatever path you choose to tread, your products are of an amazing quality and your customer support is stellar. Long life to Ghostfire Gaming!

    Reply
  9. Gabe Gustafson

    Bless you guys and good luck on all of your endeavors Truly we are all adventurers defending ourselves from the greedy dragon

    Reply
  10. Brendon C

    I’ve been playing D&D consistently since 1990, but honestly I had been looking for an excuse to ditch D&D for a while now. There are just so many better systems out there than D&D in every single way. “One D&D” gave me all the reason I needed to move on and never look back, long before this OGL mess. WotC will never see another dime from me.

    However, I still support my favorite 3rd party publishers and content creators regardless of what system they choose. It is very easy for me to adapt content to new systems (I make games for a living). So you do what you need to do to keep going, and regardless of what route you take myself and those like me will continue to show our support.

    Reply
  11. Gerald Arnold

    In truth, I wish WTC good luck with their efforts to further monetize Dungeons and Dragons. I also embrace the need for an OPEN license allowing creative talent to broaden the content. And; I do not intend to become the means of enriching their stockholders.

    Having said that, I am exploring other options. For me, the reward is in the story we create, not the frame work we use.

    Reply
  12. Jack

    Why so taciturn? Considering the assault on the community, this is an underwhelming (corporate friendly) response

    Reply
  13. Jonathan

    Any chance you’ll venture into other systems, like the Cypher System? MCG has stated that their license is open and irrevocable.

    Reply

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Grim Hollow: The Monster Grimoire offers over 400 new monsters, tailor-made for a dark fantasy campaign.