Essential Links in January 2023

The last month saw a lot of drama around a product that a lot of people care about. Wizard of the Coast, the company behind Dungeons & Dragons, supposedly wanted to change the license, under which their product could be used by others - companies and fans.

Up to now it was easy to incorporate and extend the roleplaying world around the Open Gaming License that WotC defined in 2000, to make the content of their creations usable by the public. And this license surely was part of the raging success of Dungeons & Dragons in the last 2 decades, because there was a limitless community building their worlds and their creativity around the 20-sided die and the planes of a fantastic world.

Their plans leaked and showed a glimpse of a very restrictive, money- and revenue-driven spiderweb of legal obligations for any creator out there. The uproar was real.

Countless fans and other companies cancelled their collaboration with WotC, cancelled their subscriptions on, Wizards main community portal around D&D. Many organizations and companies put out press releases to announce their discontinuation of OGL usage and the creation of their own creator-friendly community-founded models. These organizations, communities and ventures have all contributed to the wild success of the D&D franchise (there's even a fan-budgeted/kickstarted animated series on Amazon Prime now).

Now, Wizards of the Coast has ever been quite restrictive with their creations. And they are - without doubt - implementing some of the better known worlds and fantasies of the RPG genre. But they are not the only ones. And as much as they now change plans, apologize, open up with Creative Commons (with a lot of sugar-talking and humbleness) the inflicted wounds do not seem to heal. The chasm between the company and the community has grown drastically. They did not make friends.

Why do I talk about that? It's all about product strategy and how I see my product. Some see their product by the value it may bring to others. Some see their product by the value it brings for them. That's a huge difference.


Product Development

UX & Design





I ran 158 km in January so I am only ~10 km behind my goal of 2023 km in this year. Yay!