1. #1

    Module Legal Question

    I'm apparently incapable of understanding the legality's related to copyright, so I have a question: I'm making a simple FG module which is a 5e conversion of the Free "We Be Goblins" from pathfinder, can I share it here on the forums? If so what steps or rules need to be followed to do it?
    Last edited by not_so_there; September 29th, 2017 at 15:06. Reason: info that module is free

  2. #2
    Zacchaeus's Avatar
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    No, you can't unless you have permission from the copyright holder of that module. The basic rule is you can't distribute anything which is copyright.
    If there is something that you would like to see in Fantasy Grounds that isn't currently part of the software or if there is something you think would improve a ruleset then add your idea to the wish list http://fg2app.idea.informer.com/

  3. #3
    So if I were to make a request to paizo asking for permission, what is the likelihood of a yes? I don't know how hardcore each group is about a yes or no on those sort of things.

  4. #4

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    The answer is no. Aside from being competing game systems, and no one authorized a conversion to 5E, on the credits page of "We Be Goblins" is the OGL text; specifically the Product Identification where all the names, locations, deities, and so on do not fall under Open Game Content. So you'd have to go through the entire thing and change everything's name.

    Why bother? Just enjoy it for your group. It's not legal to be shared.

    Generally speaking, if you're in a situation where you have to ask yourself "I wonder if this is legal?" the answer is almost certainly "no."

  5. #5
    Trenloe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Talyn View Post
    Generally speaking, if you're in a situation where you have to ask yourself "I wonder if this is legal?" the answer is almost certainly "no."
    I'd change "almost certainly" into "probably". Yes, there are many people who don't fully understand copyright and licenses, so start from a point of "I won't distribute this until I know what I'm doing is legal" is a good idea. But there are also many games that are released under Creative Commons, OGL or other such licenses. So, for RPGS, the answer is "probably no, but check the copyright statement and licensing for the product in question and if still in doubt check with the copyright holder." Although don't be surprised if you never receive an answer from the copyright holder - no answer means no (they haven't given permission to use their material).

    So, for "We Be Goblins" mentioned by the OP, the product is released under the Open Gaming License (OGL), so some of it can be redistributed under the OGL. However, this is only game stats (NPC statblocks, feats, spells, etc.) without reference to names, place, story, etc. - and the artwork, story, names, etc. are product identity which are excluded from the OGL.

    What you can distribute under the OGL means that it really limits distributing a 5E module to the converted 5E stats. You could reference the free We Be Goblins PDF, but can't include any of the story, descriptive text, maps, artwork, etc.. Having the 5E stats would help someone who wants to run We Be Goblins using 5E in Fantasy Grunds, but they'd still have to do work to setup the artwork, maps, boxed text, etc. for their game themselves.


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