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Abschalten
I stopped really caring about this place mostly because of SR5. Sorry, but it's true. This place only exists because of Shadowrun, and the health and quality of the game is going to have a bearing on this place. I found myself only making posts to take potshots at a sub-par edition of what used to be my favorite game. I realized eventually I have better things to do with my time.

I do load up the site occasionally and lurk to see if there's any new posts of interest, but that's maybe every week or two, whereas I was a multiple-times-per-day visitor.

The solution is to fix Shadowrun on the product end. Stop buying the books, let the license go to someone else, maybe they'll do a better job. Then this place might bounce back.
Bertramn
How does that licensing work?

Is FASA still holding the rights for the third edition basic rules?
Is the setting as a whole under copyright? And how does that work?

If something like Pathfinder were to be attempted for Shadowrun,
which is the way to do it?

binarywraith
IIRC, Topps (yes, the baseball card company) owns all of the Shadowrun intellectual property. They owned WizKids, who in turn bought the IP from FASA when it went under. Catalyst Game Labs has license from them to produce tabletop gaming products, supplements, and fiction. Possibly also other merch, although it's rare enough that I'm not certain.

The video game rights are completely separate, and are owned by Microsoft and licensed to Harebrained Schemes to produce Shadowrun Returns... although they also had to license the IP from Topps for it.

Confusing, I know, but it's the same situation where CCP (Eve Online) owns all the White Wolf catalog, and Hasbro owns D&D via owning WotC, who bought out TSR. The only way Pathfinder was able to happen was the OGL, which meant the basic mechanics of D&D 3.x were open source and free to build upon, so long as the worldbuilding and copyrighted IP were stripped out. That'll never happen again, as it led to D&D making a monster that has sold at least as well if not better than 4e D&D.
Bertramn
QUOTE (binarywraith @ Dec 17 2014, 10:17 PM) *
IIRC, Topps (yes, the baseball card company) owns all of the Shadowrun intellectual property. They owned WizKids, who in turn bought the IP from FASA when it went under. Catalyst Game Labs has license from them to produce tabletop gaming products, supplements, and fiction. Possibly also other merch, although it's rare enough that I'm not certain.

The video game rights are completely separate, and are owned by Microsoft and licensed to Harebrained Schemes to produce Shadowrun Returns... although they also had to license the IP from Topps for it.

Confusing, I know, but it's the same situation where CCP (Eve Online) owns all the White Wolf catalog, and Hasbro owns D&D via owning WotC, who bought out TSR. The only way Pathfinder was able to happen was the OGL, which meant the basic mechanics of D&D 3.x were open source and free to build upon, so long as the worldbuilding and copyrighted IP were stripped out. That'll never happen again, as it led to D&D making a monster that has sold at least as well if not better than 4e D&D.


Mh, so I guess doing something like Pathfinder is not possible then, at least commercially.
Is it legal to do something like that if it is not sold?
Smilingfaces
There is another way, rebellious but we would need this rebel group that supposedly is here on Dumpshock and off Dumpshock. If there is this rebel group here like its being implied and it is truly not just hot air but a real passionate desire to fix something. "Then draw the line in the sand." Paizo did and gave the new system of D&D the bird. If your truly disenfranchised with the current system, stand by your desire and quit talking about wanting or wishing about it to change. Let us channel this energy, creative desires and anthusasim to roll out, and up, the good ole black flag and take the system back, in a true shadowrunner way!

1. Put a petition up on dumpshock stating We the Dumpshockians, and all lovers of this beautiful fictional world called Shadowrun. Decree; That the current system is unjust, and milking the IP. We here by state our support for an overthrow of the system, that will give the IP back to Jordan Weisman and (or) the original creators. We the Dumpshockians seize this initiative and aim to open a crowd funded source to do just that and buy back the IP, for all gamers and readers of this beautiful world of Shadowrun everywhere.

2. Spread the petition around the net and other media outlets, to where ever and who ever lets you post it slap it on anything and everything. Let the creators see our plight, let them see this creation that they helped make, has now took a breath on its own. It's now knocking on their door, saying "Listen up chummer, we are not going away." "You created us and we want you to take responsibility of this creation" "This thing you created was head of its time, like all great writers from H.P Lovecraft, Nigel Findley, Iggy Pop, to the Ramones." It's time has come, and we want you to be at its helm guiding it across the sea of time."

3. Create the crowed funded donation by Dumpshock, the name is known by the originators.

I know this plight seems impossible my fellow Dumpshockians, but this war is winnable. It has happened once before on the grand stage of time. When people desire became so overwhelming that the creator had to accept responsibility of what they created. Sir Conan Doyle creator of Sherlock homes, killed Sherlock off, because he wanted to stop writing Sherlock Holmes. The Adventure of the Final Problem was published in December of 1893, in The Strand magazine. People were so upset that more than twenty thousand of them cancelled their subscription to The Strand magazine. The public's response was phenomenal damn near rioting. Doyle had to resurrect Holmes. The Hound of the Baskervilles was also first published in The Strand. The magazine's circulation rose by thirty thousand overnight. Later Holmes was truly brought back to life in The Adventure of the Empty House. At the start of the story Watson is alone. His wife is dead and he believes Holmes to be dead as well. However Watson learns that Holmes's death was a ruse to hide from Moriarty's associates.

Jordan has created Shadowrun Returns, when the time was gritty and good. He still has that special magic, the vision, the desire. So if you are with me and truly dream the same vision, say OI! and cross that line in the sand. Together to arms.. lets hoist up the black flag and sail our armada across the sea of cyberspace and spring our captain(s) so they can take the helm.
I'll be the first to donate $200 in US for this cause, I may go with out cigarettes and coffee but DAMN IT, the cause is good and who wants to stand idle and watch something that inspires all of us go to drek? We can all dream better when the cause succeeds.
Bertramn
QUOTE (Smilingfaces @ Dec 18 2014, 10:41 AM) *
3. Create the crowed funded donation by Dumpshock, the name is known by the originators.

I know this plight seems impossible my fellow Dumpshockians, but this war is winnable. It has happened once before on the grand stage of time. When people desire became so overwhelming that the creator had to accept responsibility of what they created. Sir Conan Doyle creator of Sherlock homes, killed Sherlock off, because he wanted to stop writing Sherlock Holmes. The Adventure of the Final Problem was published in December of 1893, in The Strand magazine. People were so upset that more than twenty thousand of them cancelled their subscription to The Strand magazine. The public's response was phenomenal damn near rioting. Doyle had to resurrect Holmes. The Hound of the Baskervilles was also first published in The Strand. The magazine's circulation rose by thirty thousand overnight. Later Holmes was truly brought back to life in The Adventure of the Empty House. At the start of the story Watson is alone. His wife is dead and he believes Holmes to be dead as well. However Watson learns that Holmes's death was a ruse to hide from Moriarty's associates.


I would prefer working on the rules first.
The Revolution may follow.

Going and making them public is still possible on a later date.

Also I do not think that the percentage of people who are so dissatisfied with fifth edition, that they would figuratively take to the streets, is that great.
That is why I am mainly interested in a clean rewrite of third edition.
Adam
QUOTE (Smilingfaces @ Dec 18 2014, 04:41 AM) *
1. Put a petition up on dumpshock stating We the Dumpshockians, and all lovers of this beautiful fictional world called Shadowrun. Decree; That the current system is unjust, and milking the IP. We here by state our support for an overthrow of the system, that will give the IP back to Jordan Weisman and (or) the original creators. We the Dumpshockians seize this initiative and aim to open a crowd funded source to do just that and buy back the IP, for all gamers and readers of this beautiful world of Shadowrun everywhere.


You know that Shadowrun is owned by Topps, right? This means two things that are salient right here:

1. They have a lot of money. You won't impress them.
2. They aren't the ones making Shadowrun products; they're just licensing it out.
Smilingfaces
Yes I am aware that Topps owns the IP (intellectual property) Had you read what you quoted you would of seen "buy back the IP". It's in the fourth sentence of what you quoted me for in case your confused.
In response to; "They have a lot of money. You won't impress them." You do realize I am talking about buying back the IP, right? Not talking about buying out Topps. Rich people and companies buy and sell things all the time its no different. People part with works of art, artists have bought their IP back from major labels they signed with, I could go on. So don't just say "oh they have money, they aren't going to be impressed" $0.00 isn't impressive. A crowd funded source raising that up will be. See the difference?
Sendaz
QUOTE (Smilingfaces @ Dec 18 2014, 04:41 AM) *
There is another way, rebellious but we would need this rebel group that supposedly is here on Dumpshock and off Dumpshock. If there is this rebel group here like its being implied and it is truly not just hot air but a real passionate desire to fix something. "Then draw the line in the sand." Paizo did and gave the new system of D&D the bird. If your truly disenfranchised with the current system, stand by your desire and quit talking about wanting or wishing about it to change. Let us channel this energy, creative desires and anthusasim to roll out, and up, the good ole black flag and take the system back, in a true shadowrunner way!

The concept does have its merits, and if anything crowdsourcing/kickstarter has shown it could raise significant funds.

You might even be able to obtain the IP back from Topps, as they are having a bit of a reshuffle on the sports side with the Panini/NFLPA contract so maybe a quick injection of money now vs the current payment over time through licence may appeal to them.

However, I think before we go down that route, we would need to line up ducks on this end first.

What happens to those already licensed? Will there be a grace period for changing over or are all things just going to go screeching to a halt? Remember these are peoples livelihood.

Would Weisman even be interested in going back down the full game route? Just because he loves doing SRR does not necessarily mean he wants to be dealing with the whole enchilada again.

If you are going to try and swing this, one would really need to have the people lined up to actually make the thing.

Not saying it can not happen, but first you need to look past the first goal of getting the IP and think, okay what then?
flowswithdrek
Does anyone even have a rough idea of how much such a transfer of IP would cost if it was even up for negotiation? I think it would be significant, or it would have happened before now. Having said that, raising the money through the community would probably be the easy part.
binarywraith
Not to mention the question of what the contract between CGL and Topps looks like. You could very well get the IP and then discover that you're stuck with CGL having it licensed for another few years.
nezumi
Buying the license isn't realistic. Something like Shadowrun, the cost is going to start in the six digits. For Topps, something like this is the goose laying the golden egg. Shadowrun will likely continue paying out in licensing fees for years, maybe decades, without Topps having to do anything. Plus you get things like video games and novels, which have to license it as well. With SR:R out and SR5 just released, the likelihood of selling the license (not leasing) is probably a non-starter, so you'll need a mountain of cash just to walk in the door. Plus, the license is currently under contract. Topps cannot legally break that until it's up for renewal.

And indeed, if you did get the license, what then? I don't expect Weisman is interested in SR any more. And that's even assuming that's where everyone agrees they want it to go. Are we just going to hand it over, no strings? All that money we raised just donated to Weisman/Mystery Line Manager's new RPG company? Or do we hold the license so we can revoke it if we decide we want to? And if we hold it, who is 'we'? Do we incorporate a holding company? Who manages that?

This plan is neat, but it's also pie-in-the-sky.

Shemhazai
Six digits? I was thinking on the order of eight.

That golden goose is usually referred to as a cash cow. I think that's the problem. As a fan, of course I want them to spend more money on making Shadowrun more attractive to a larger audience rather than sit back and collect profit from the existing fan base.

I don't see problems with the IP being transferred to a new owner, even if it's currently under license.

Doesn't Jordan Weisman head Harebrained Schemes, which is actively developing Shadowrun products? Why do you think he's not interested in Shadowrun?

I would hope for a new IP owner to invest in it (designers, writers, artists, etc) in hopes of turning a higher profit in the future with a larger fan base that will purchase games, spin-offs, novels, figures, comics, animations, TV, film, etc. That business strategy would benefit the Shadowrun community greatly.
Smilingfaces
If we crowd fund it, it will generate revenue to buy the IP its as simple as that. As far as who would own it how about the creators that have there name in print from 1st edition wasn't it their idea's? If they didn't pen it down then it wouldn't be here today right after all these decades it is still here. Its not hard to split something into equal shares 3 is 1/3rd for example. As long as it was handle properly I can see it in my mind working"hey you do Japan. I'll do NAN ready break." I can see then also having the know how to print novels they had a whole line back in the day. PS you do realize these guys worked with each other at one point to right? Does anyone remember them having a huge blow out with vows of "i'll never work with you again!"

As far as Topps and this is somehow there golden goose egg, lets all take a moment to wrap out heads around that statement.. I got nothing. Like Topps isn't a diversified company this is somehow one of the major contributors to increasing their revenue a niche rpg market. Some how I missed the memo when Shadowruns Card game striped magic the gathering from its lofty money generating position as THE CARD GAME. I must of been pass out drunk when Shadowrun rocketed to the #1 RPG in the world surpassing all challengers. Lets get serious for a moment. How many novels came out since catalyst took over? Catalyst as in actualy stamped name to. I don't want to include the germens I believe they somehow have there own IP, to shadowrun. If my memory serves me correctly. I don't speak germen so that's why I am not sure, I don't keep up with their products. But I can tell you Harebrain as put out 2 games already while catalyst still cant get their MMO off the ground plus put out a unfinished product, I might add that is just obvious.

Look if I seen support for this idea id help organize it, I would. I already offered to donate $200 in US, I would just throw money at it when ever I could as well, so it be more then 200 smile.gif All contracts have clauses when its outsourced that part I can tell you. I am sure if enough money was tossed at topps they would sell the IP.
Draco18s
QUOTE (Smilingfaces @ Dec 23 2014, 11:54 AM) *
If we crowd fund it, it will generate revenue to buy the IP its as simple as that.


Because that worked so well for the Homeworld IP. Even if they'd made their goal (which was a paltry $50,000) the owner would know exactly how money they have, how much interest there is, and say "no." If the amount isn't very large (cough, 50k) they'll just opt to holding onto it (not enough interest). If it's larger they can say "no" and then do something with it, making even more money (massive interest making the IP more valuable than the offer).
flowswithdrek
Well, like I said earlier, finding the money would be the easiest part. If I really thought the IP was up for grabs I would certainly contribute to a 'Fan Held IP'. What I would want to see is a small group of knowledgeable people put forward a plan in advance. Just handing it back to people that worked on it in the past won't cut it, even if it is nearly Christmas. Sure invite them to work on it, try and put a dream team together, but just don't hand something so hard won by the fans straight back out of their hands.

Sendaz
Well, this is where the fun begins as has anyone actually talked to either Mr. Weisman or L. Ross Babcock III, you know the two founders you were wanting to go back to? I am well aware that Weisman is Harebrained, but that does not necessarily means he wants to get back into pen and paper.

Remember FASA shut down before, not because of bankruptcy, but is said they got out of what they saw as a dwindling market and instead went to focus on particular niches, like Weisman went on to doing more computer games with Microsoft.

Mr. Babcock btw is back on the Board of Directors for the renewed FASA Games Inc., unless I missed a sacking somewhere wink.gif .

Plus if you have been following the reconstituted FASA's attempt to revive Earthdawn (which they Kickstarted and I donated toward by the way), you would see that this project is waaaaaaayyyyy behind schedule with no actual release of any of the promised goodies to date , which should have started appearing back in August.
Possible release dates remain elusive, but to be fair there has been a number of problems.
You can follow that item's progress here.

So problems with production are not limited to CGL alone. nyahnyah.gif

What we would need before doing anything else is a core of people who would actually be able to do something with it.
nezumi
One thing I think is clear, between the license discussions here and lamenting in other threads, is that many people feel like SR2/3 is a good game, but it needs some tweaking (not to mention, new material). Not only will that help us as players, but it will also get the forums moving again as we debate endlessly on all of the new rules, adventures, and background information that's coming out.

We did have that at one point, but it got moved off-forum, for fear of upsetting the relationship with CGL. But at this point, I'd like to think those bridges are pretty effectively torched. I'd really like to bring Shadowrun 3 Revised back to Dumpshock, where it will get the attention and traffic it needs. Kage did a great job with what he had, but his forum didn't have enough publicity (largely because he was respectful enough to DS to not push it). I've been running with the new ruleset for years and love it. More hands on deck could only improve things.

Is that feasible? Can the ban on SR3R be lifted?
Critias
QUOTE (Smilingfaces @ Dec 23 2014, 10:54 AM) *
If we crowd fund it, it will generate revenue to buy the IP its as simple as that. As far as who would own it how about the creators that have there name in print from 1st edition wasn't it their idea's? If they didn't pen it down then it wouldn't be here today right after all these decades it is still here. Its not hard to split something into equal shares 3 is 1/3rd for example. As long as it was handle properly I can see it in my mind working"hey you do Japan. I'll do NAN ready break." I can see then also having the know how to print novels they had a whole line back in the day. PS you do realize these guys worked with each other at one point to right? Does anyone remember them having a huge blow out with vows of "i'll never work with you again!"

As far as Topps and this is somehow there golden goose egg, lets all take a moment to wrap out heads around that statement.. I got nothing. Like Topps isn't a diversified company this is somehow one of the major contributors to increasing their revenue a niche rpg market. Some how I missed the memo when Shadowruns Card game striped magic the gathering from its lofty money generating position as THE CARD GAME. I must of been pass out drunk when Shadowrun rocketed to the #1 RPG in the world surpassing all challengers. Lets get serious for a moment. How many novels came out since catalyst took over? Catalyst as in actualy stamped name to. I don't want to include the germens I believe they somehow have there own IP, to shadowrun. If my memory serves me correctly. I don't speak germen so that's why I am not sure, I don't keep up with their products. But I can tell you Harebrain as put out 2 games already while catalyst still cant get their MMO off the ground plus put out a unfinished product, I might add that is just obvious.

Look if I seen support for this idea id help organize it, I would. I already offered to donate $200 in US, I would just throw money at it when ever I could as well, so it be more then 200 smile.gif All contracts have clauses when its outsourced that part I can tell you. I am sure if enough money was tossed at topps they would sell the IP.

I mean this in the nicest way possible, and only in hope of saving you some heartache (and maybe even some money, depending on your sincerity and enthusiasm level), but I feel it's important that someone being honest with you, here; you really, really, have no idea what you're talking about.
Smilingfaces
Thanks Critias for weighing in on all this, could you be a little more specific? You quoted my whole statement including the jokes bud.
Critias
Frankly, I think the idea of Dumpshock crowdfunding enough cash to buy the rights to Shadowrun and then doing they're-not-sure-what with it (but maybe give it to Jordan Weissman, I guess?) is just...ridiculous. Ill-thought out, showing no idea how much money would be required, or how to go about it, or if Jordan even wants the IP any more, or what you're going to do if he doesn't, or how it is you imagine books will be produced (and printed and shipped), and I'm sorry but the whole idea is just really absurd from start to finish.
Cain
Critias is right. It'd be a huge mess.

I'm no expert on IP, but I can see that Shadowrun is a very diverse property. Off the top of my head, it's not only spawned five and a half editions of a RPG, but four computer games, two card games, two tabletop/board games, dozens of novels, and at least one miniature game. The video game rights were split off a long time ago, but the rest are all jumbled together under one IP.

The likelihood of fans being able to crowdsource enough money to buy them all is not good, so we'd have to separate out the RPG. But then, you get into a big hassle as you try to figure out which is which. Would the novels fall under the RPG? Because the mini game, Shadowrun Duels, had a dedicated series of novels written for it. What about cards? Would the gear and spell cards infringe on the card game IP? Does a boxed set count as a board game, or a tabletop game? These sort of questions keep lawyers employed for years, and you could expect to spend a fortune trying to sort it all out.

And that's just one problem, an easily-forseen one. There's bound to be lots more that crop up.
Adam
QUOTE (Smilingfaces @ Dec 23 2014, 12:54 PM) *
How many novels came out since catalyst took over? Catalyst as in actualy stamped name to. I don't want to include the germens I believe they somehow have there own IP, to shadowrun.


Last I knew, the german license was sublicensed through IMR / Catalyst.

QUOTE
But I can tell you Harebrain as put out 2 games already while catalyst still cant get their MMO off the ground plus put out a unfinished product, I might add that is just obvious.


Catalyst isn't doing an MMO. Cliffhanger Productions is, licensed from Microsoft.

There are a ton of wrinkles with the Shadowrun IP. A magical grab-bag full of surprises!
Smilingfaces
1st off the whole thing to what I said I believe is on page 3. That's where all this spawned from. See that before you start chiming in trying to pick apart an idea that has splintered into other peoples comments rehashing from other peoples comments. I think you will see I wasn't just talking about dumpshock but other forums and media sources to get the word out. I just think it be cool if dumpshock did the petition, grabbing bragging rights "It started in the dumpshock forums first and then went from there" Yea that has bragging rights written all over it.
2nd of all I am talking about the IP as in the material, roleplaying and books again was basically specified.
3rd of all having this conversation with 4 writers whom I would think they would understand how IP works but apparently not. Atleast Cain said" I am no expert" and I can respect that.
4th of all considering ^ I am now convinced maybe this idea has some merit, we have had 2 writers from Posthuman Studios and two from Catalyst, in a couple of days since I first made the statement. Cain you have done some work for catalyst haven't you? Critias was just saying earlier in this thread how -"I just want to point out they've got that -- pretty much exactly that -- over on the Shadowrun Universe forums. I hate their layout so I don't post over there or keep up with it as often as I could/should, but even at a glance, the subforum activity numbers are pretty jarring; "previous Shadowrun editions" has about 600 total comments (with about a half-dozen threads that have seen any activity in all of 2014), "Shadowrun 4th Edition" has about 4,000 (with exactly two posts made any time this calendar year), and "Shadowrun 5th Edition" has going on 17,000."
Just some post count stuff to keep in mind, which might be relevant to the discussion. Maybe it says something about gamers in general, maybe it says something about Dumpshock's attention span for older editions compared to other forums (and what that implies about demographics, I guess"- Critias didn't waste time with that gem considering its on page 1,nothing like a friendly road sign to steer traffic, in a thread about getting more traffic here.
And finally 5th, I guess I'll do some more research into who has what IP, and a few other things. When I have it ill make a thread posting the findings perhaps a poll to see who's interested. I cant say for sure because I haven't got a chance to look into it as much as i'd like its the holidays after all. In the meantime why not comment on how to make dumpshock better.
Bertramn
I like the idea in general,
but what we are going to find the greatest consensus about,
in the comments that were made about the idea,
is that we should not start with crowdfunding,
but with the/a project.

If we crowdsource revised Shadowrun rules,
and mayhaps a good writeup for a core book,
we can start crowdfunding that stuff,
for example.

If someone interviews Weisman on the topic,
to get his actual opinion...

Starting with raising the money before we know what to exactly do with it,
and whether or not it will work,
reeks of a disaster in the making.
That is what I think most are trying to say here.
flowswithdrek
@Smilingfaces

Don't let the naysayers put your idea down. Run with it and see what you can come up with regarding the IP. Is it for sale and if so at what price. Only then should you start making plans as to how to raise money and what the future of IP holds. If the IP holders aren't willing to even talk about it then its dead in the water, but at least you can say you tried. I've been involved in several projects were people said things couldn't be done, some were proved right, some were proved wrong, but just being involved in those projects has taken me to places I could never imagined, even those that failed.
bannockburn
Just a thought here, for the uninitiated:
The "naysayers" are people intimately acquainted with running the line for a while, and / or freelancers.
Critias
I don't even know what this guy's trying to imply any more, so hell if I'm going to keep wasting time engaging with it. Have a good one, fella, enjoy the holidays, and good luck with whatever revolution it is you think you're launching, here.
flowswithdrek
QUOTE (bannockburn @ Dec 24 2014, 04:51 PM) *
Just a thought here, for the uninitiated:
The "naysayers" are people intimately acquainted with running the line for a while, and / or freelancers.


I don't think there are too may uninitiated around here and if there are then initiation is only a few posts away smile.gif

Why don't these great Initiated come out and say this can't happen because [insert reasonable statement of fact] rather than just putting other members of the board down. Maybe they do know stuff about the IP, maybe they cant talk about it due to NDA, but they could be a little less toxic or hostile. I'm a freelancer for several game lines, and for the most part I know nothing about the details of those IPs
Stahlseele
TOPPS owns the License.
And even after CGL basically stole 1 Million dollars (pinkie finger in corner of mouth), they STILL did not revoke their right to the IP from them.
Which should tell you a bit about why it's not likely to work. The people CGL more or less directly stole from did not take SR away from them.
For reasons unknown. Probably because of contracts signed and Lawyers and Bullshit like that. Nobody ever came out and talked about it yet.
And when questions get asked, they are either ignored or answered with:"NDA applies here, so nyaaah!"
As long as you can't contact and CONVINCE TOPPS to give somebody else the license, you are not even allowed to start funding for taking it.

And, seriously, it's either Weisman or simply giving the german people the say about what goes and does not go in SR and having CGL ask "mommy may i?" instead of the way it is now.
With CGL getting final say and the german people, who actually are better at this stuff than CGL at this point, having to ask for permission. Know why not much of the german stuff ever gets translated to engrish?
Because CGL would get money from it and the german people would not. That is one part of the in my eyes absurd IP copyright / licensing Trademark Bullshit surrounding Shadowrun.

And THEN we come to the next big problem.
Nobody knows if SR/BT are a package deal by. So you don't know wether or not you need to acquire not just one but both licenses together.
And BT is getting so much favourable treatment over SR that it actually still works, even with such stupid nonsense as Mechwarrior Online and Mechwarrior Tactics marring the Name.
Sendaz
QUOTE (Stahlseele @ Dec 24 2014, 04:24 PM) *
TOPPS owns the License.
And even after CGL basically stole 1 Million dollars (pinkie finger in corner of mouth), they STILL did not revoke their right to the IP from them.
Which should tell you a bit about why it's not likely to work. The people CGL more or less directly stole from did not take SR away from them.
For reasons unknown. Probably because of contracts signed and Lawyers and Bullshit like that. Nobody ever came out and talked about it yet.
And when questions get asked, they are either ignored or answered with:"NDA applies here, so nyaaah!"
As long as you can't contact and CONVINCE TOPPS to give somebody else the license, you are not even allowed to start funding for taking it.

I thought it was that certain parties had misappropriated those funds from CGL itself, so how would they have stolen from TOPPS?

Rather wasn't it was internal matter of CGL? So long as TOPPS got paid for their license usage would they really be concerned?

Embezzling/ misusage of funds can happen at all levels of industries, but you would not necessarily shut down all ties because of it.

I could be wrong as everything I have seen on this matter has been sketchy on all details.

I am not disagreeing that getting it from TOPPS would be difficult in th extreme as it would have to be enough to warrant them passing up what they have now, rather I am just trying to find clarity on the background of the event mentioned above.
bannockburn
QUOTE (flowswithdrek @ Dec 24 2014, 06:38 PM) *
Why don't these great Initiated come out and say this can't happen because [insert reasonable statement of fact] rather than just putting other members of the board down. Maybe they do know stuff about the IP, maybe they cant talk about it due to NDA, but they could be a little less toxic or hostile. I'm a freelancer for several game lines, and for the most part I know nothing about the details of those IPs

First of all, with 'uninitiated' I meant the people who obviously do not know who Adam Jury is.
As for your questions why they did not answer: There are a multitude of reasons, most of which are not fit to be discussed on an open board. You answer your question in part yourself by referring to NDAs, but there is business information involved that no one here is a) privy to and b) they simply aren't supposed to know. You don't just give out what a license for a well-known IP has cost you once upon a time, or what it earns you, and so on. The reasons that are fit to be discussed were shared.

Furthermore: not one of the people in the know here were toxic or even hostile. Adam pointed out a few facts, for which he was basically flamed; Critias went to great pains disclaiming any hostile intent, getting the same treatment. So yeah, the old adage about stones and glass houses applies.

Yes, your 'plan' (or lack thereof) is, in essence, something we here in Germany call a 'Schnapsidee'. Sounds nice when you're boozed up and enthusiastic, but less so in the morning with a giant hangover and a mountain of facts arrayed against you.
Make no mistake, though: your enthusiasm is worth a lot and shows your passion for the game, but when someone who was intimately involved with the product tells you that it's not going to happen, it isn't meant to put you down, or to uphold a privilege of some sorts. It's simply (as was stated very politely) to spare you some grief.
flowswithdrek
QUOTE (bannockburn @ Dec 24 2014, 10:31 PM) *
Yes, your 'plan' (or lack thereof) is, in essence, something we here in Germany call a 'Schnapsidee'. Sounds nice when you're boozed up and enthusiastic, but less so in the morning with a giant hangover and a mountain of facts arrayed against you.

Not my plan, I just like the concept. I just think people could be a little more supportive in general around here.

Ah well, no sense in derailing the thread furtherů
Redjack
The licensing conversation is now in its own thread.
binarywraith
QUOTE (flowswithdrek @ Dec 24 2014, 05:11 PM) *
Not my plan, I just like the concept. I just think people could be a little more supportive in general around here.

Ah well, no sense in derailing the thread furtherů


It's not really a matter of being supportive, as much as trying to save some heartache. You'd think that if there's one thing a bunch of Shadowrun fans would remember, it's that the megacorps usually win. biggrin.gif
Jaid
yeah, first things first: topps is a business. you want to talk to them, you need to talk their language, and explain how you're going to make them some money.

right now, CGL has a functioning system for taking books from idea to completion. you may argue that it doesn't function very well, but it nevertheless does function.

in contrast, the proposed dumpshock forums collective revolution has... nothing. we have no authors who've said they'll write for us. we have no professional editors, no professional line developers (whether you think CGL has a good one or not, at least they have one), nobody to do layout, no dedicated playtesters or proofreaders, no relationships with any printers or the various companies and distributors that sell the product, no artists, nothing.

and heck, that's just the stuff that i, a person with a passing interest in the industry as an industry, am aware of.

frankly, if i owned the shadowrun license, there's not a snowball's chance in hell i'd license it to us right now. before i would even *dream* of going to topps to make a pitch for the license, i would first want to have a plan. and not just "we're going to buy the license and make awesome stuff", but a detailed plan, where we show expenses, demonstrate that we have the team to do that (ideally with plenty of experience in the industry), and so forth.

as to buying the license, any amount of money we as fans can generate merely serves as proof that the license is worth more than what we can generate. if we have hundreds of people all willing to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on shadowrun, that means the market is at least that much, and most likely more (because there are almost assuredly other fans who aren't willing to shell out just to get the license with no product attached). and again, we don't have the resources to do anything with the license. if we got it, somehow, we would need to do all the work that i mentioned above, because otherwise we're just going to kill the IP dead, unless we sell it again.

making this idea work is going to take an insane amount of work just to get to the point where topps wouldn't be insane to even acknowledge our existence, and once we've reached that point there isn't even a hint of a suggestion that they'd be looking to let the license go.

it's a cool-sounding idea, and frankly i don't particularly like where CGL is going with the game either. but it's going to take more than just throwing a bit of money into a collective account to get the license. this is not a simple thing that is being proposed, it is an extremely difficult task that we as a community completely lack the tools to accomplish.
Redjack
QUOTE (Jaid @ Dec 24 2014, 07:59 PM) *
as to buying the license, any amount of money we as fans can generate merely serves as proof that the license is worth more than what we can generate.
As much as I hate to admit it, this is the soundest statement I've read in this entire thread.
KarmaInferno
Even if every Dumpshocker pooled all their life savings, I would be greatly surprised if it amounted to even 10 percent of the needed funds for such a buyout.


-k
Cain
QUOTE (Stahlseele @ Dec 24 2014, 01:24 PM) *
And THEN we come to the next big problem.
Nobody knows if SR/BT are a package deal by. So you don't know wether or not you need to acquire not just one but both licenses together.
And BT is getting so much favourable treatment over SR that it actually still works, even with such stupid nonsense as Mechwarrior Online and Mechwarrior Tactics marring the Name.

Actually, that one we do know.

When FanPro USA went away, the reason CGL was picked to take over the Shadowrun property was because they were doing a good job with BattleTech. And, to be fair, from what I've seen they are doing a good job with it. Battletech gets regular events, high-quality (and well-edited) books, tons of support, and so on. Why they're not doing the same with Shadowrun is anybody's guess, but it's not because they can't do a good job with the line.
Grinder
QUOTE (Sendaz @ Dec 24 2014, 10:38 PM) *
I thought it was that certain parties had misappropriated those funds from CGL itself, so how would they have stolen from TOPPS?

Rather wasn't it was internal matter of CGL? So long as TOPPS got paid for their license usage would they really be concerned?

Embezzling/ misusage of funds can happen at all levels of industries, but you would not necessarily shut down all ties because of it.


Correct. More details are only known to those involved.
binarywraith
QUOTE (Cain @ Dec 24 2014, 10:00 PM) *
Actually, that one we do know.

When FanPro USA went away, the reason CGL was picked to take over the Shadowrun property was because they were doing a good job with BattleTech. And, to be fair, from what I've seen they are doing a good job with it. Battletech gets regular events, high-quality (and well-edited) books, tons of support, and so on. Why they're not doing the same with Shadowrun is anybody's guess, but it's not because they can't do a good job with the line.


I'd suggest it has a lot to do with throwing away a lot of the core of dedicated writers who knew the setting inside out enough to write quickly and well for it. The fact that they've managed to keep a few good people on, like the folks who post here from time to time, is all that really gives me hope that the line can pull up out of this nosedive in quality.
Shemhazai
What I want to see is more money spent to develop Shadowrun, even at the risk of taking a loss. My idea is that the short term risk could be offset by larger future earning brought about by having a larger fan base, which would be the result of having more attractive products. If the fan base were large enough, it could bring about the possibility of other, far more profitable non-RPG Shadowrun products in the future.

I see the IP licensing model being applied to the RPG as a barrier to this. The IP holder should not accept a loss, and nor the company licensing it. What would motivate Catalyst to spend their own money to greatly improve Shadowrun when TOPPS is the company that would benefit from it by being able to license, for example, a comic?

An answer might be for the IP holder and the game developer to be the same entity. Their risk would be that they could lose money in the entire venture if they have overvalued the Shadowrun property. As a fan, I can accept that I may be vastly overestimating the monetary potential of Shadowrun.

Referring to a purchase as a misguided revolution, implying that people are out to get CGL, assuming that it will be crowdfunded, expecting the purchasers to just give it away, and other things in this thread just murky the waters.
nezumi
If you truly want to save Shadowrun, first you have to kill Shadowrun.

Shadowrun's mechanics aren't copyrighted. You can't copyright math. We are free to pull SR1, 2, 3, 4, or 5's dice rolling. We can use a cyberpunk setting. We can use Tolkien monsters and spells. We can use "Combat Pool" and "Matrix".

What we cannot use is "Shadowrun" or "Renraku" or "Mitsuhama" or "Ares Predator".

If you want to raise money to make Shadowrun, this is the method that takes the least work and the least capital (mind you, it still takes a lot of both). Raise $50,000-$100,000 for your freelancers, layout, artists, first prints, etc., you can scoop up some of that Shadowrun skill and build your perfect magical-cyberpunk d6 system. But it would not be "Shadowrun".
Smilingfaces
There are still some more comments that have to be moved over here cause this thread doesn't read right.

Anywho you have to be careful on what "monsters" some are copy righted as in the famous case of Gary Gygax and TSR. Anyways here is the deal I have already stated the idea which is now being contorted into a bunch of other things.

Ok since this is to hard for some people to figure out, its not that hard but what ever, ill be looking through who hold what IP its just the holidays I am busy in RL. If I am going to start digging around i'd rather do it right then poke at it. For the few who don't know what IP is its intellectual property. I wasn't talking about getting the license, I was talking about the IP.

What I was originally talking about, led to this thread being moved here instead of where it was originally. What I was saying originally was crowd funding the IP to go back to the creators of shadowrun like Jordan Weisman. It wasn't limited to dumpshock as in only dumpshock members were putting out a collection plate or was it limited to this forum, alright.
I don't think we need to kill shadowrun, to save it. Were you in NAM or something Kill the village to save the village mentality? I wouldn't throw money at the "new" writers for shadowrun hence the idea of giving it back to the creators.

Personally and I know iam not the only one looking at writing and lack there of (bad writing bad editing) from Catalyst that thinks they are just milking the IP. When I put up the thread what have you learned from shadowrun a lot of people spoke of shadowfiles that's from 2ed for example. So no, handing money to the "new" writers would be taking steps back instead of forward that's for damn sure.
nezumi
Suit yourself. I agree with your motivation. I'd love to see additions/revisions for SR1/2/3. I'd love to see the IP move to someone who would be doing that. But I don't think it's a realistic option. Please do prove me wrong, but understand the burden of proof lies with you.

If you find the IP isn't available for purchase, then you have two options. Either you drop the name "Shadowrun" and all of the copyrighted parts of the setting to create a derivative product. Or you drop the matter altogether as being untenable.

I'll continue playing and updating SR3R, writing my own adventures, and freelancing. IMO, this is the only way to get new Shadowrun material; by making it myself. People are welcome to pitch in, if they'd like.
KarmaInferno
You could have all the money in the world. If the current owner doesn't wanna deal, it won't matter.

Crowdfunding doesn't magically give you the ability to force someone to sell their property.

We know who owns the IP. As stated a few times now, it's Topps, the trading card company, who has not shown the slightest interest in selling the IP. They even let Catalyst keep the license despite that company going through a pretty serious embezzlement/misappropriation of funds scandal.

It is extremely unlikely anything you could possibly raise via crowdfunding would approach even a fraction of the money required to convince Topps to sell.


-k
Sendaz
QUOTE (Smilingfaces @ Dec 25 2014, 09:16 PM) *
I don't think we need to kill shadowrun, to save it. Were you in NAM or something Kill the village to save the village mentality?

Okay, as you may not be aware, but more than a fair few here are military/ex-military, myself included.

And while I was not in 'Nam myself my father and many relatives were, so you may want to rethink tossing comments like that out.


As for the rest, I am really having a difficult time trying to continue any sort of conversation on this as while we do agree in principle with some of your points, you don't be seeming to addressing other points that have been raised or you go on with a condescending tone toward those who didn't agree with your points by trying to pass it off as they somehow don't seem to understand what you are saying.

The truth is they do understand and are raising their own points in kind, which is sort of the point of having a discussion.

You may want to go back through the posts in both threads over the holiday because maybe you are just missing some of the posts and thus this may just be a miscommunication.
Method
QUOTE (Smilingfaces @ Dec 25 2014, 08:16 PM) *
Ok since this is to hard for some people to figure out, its not that hard but what ever, ill be looking through who hold what IP its just the holidays I am busy in RL.


Man, part of what you're failing to understand is people aren't just trying to be mean. We are trying to share some of our collective knowledge regarding the SR IP, since many of us were around during the many changes (some were even involved).

First, the IP is split into computer-based games and other games. Prior to ceasing operations (as Cain mentioned they never went out of business), FASA sold all rights to computer-based games based on SR to Microsoft. Those rights have since been licensed to Smith and Tinker (Jordan Wiesman) and then to HBS and Cliffhanger.

The rest of the IP is even more complicated. FASA sold SR and BT to Wizkids, which licensed the rights to Fanpro. Wizkids was then purchased by Topps, who currently holds the IP. Tops licenses the rights to SR and BT to Catalyst, which is the current state of affairs. As has been mentioned, Topps has stuck by Catalyst even through some significant "struggles", which I don't want to go into (you can read it for yourself). Nobody really knows what went down between Topps and Catalyst during that time, but the fact that Catalyst still holds the liscense speaks to their working relationship and the profitability of SR, both of which will make any attempt at acquiring the IP more difficult.

Keep in mind that the value of the SRs IP isn't just based on how well they sold their last book, or the last ten. SR has been making money for 25 years. It's not something that a company like Topps is going to part with for cheap.

And then there's that whole needing a plan part.

So, again, people aren't just naysaying. We are trying to give you a realistic idea of what you're actually talking about.
Redjack
QUOTE (Smilingfaces @ Dec 25 2014, 08:16 PM) *
Were you in NAM or something Kill the village to save the village mentality?
This crap is completely unacceptable. It either ends now or I'll lock this thread and send out warnings.

QUOTE (Terms of Service)
1. Personal attacks, flaming, trolling, and baiting are prohibited.
Jaid
first step before starting a crowdfunding project: make sure you have the ability to actually do the thing you're raising money for.

you want to revive the brand by turning it over to the original authors? well, we don't even know if they are willing to spend their time and effort (and ultimately money, since they'll be giving up their current source of income for a new and uncertain one) yet. like i said earlier, before you get the brand, you're going to need a business plan. there's plenty of things that sound like good ideas, but are doomed to failure because nobody properly accounted for all the steps involved in making the idea actually happen.

you want people to get together and shell out money for the IP. assuming that's even possible, you're going to need to show them that they aren't just throwing their money into a bottomless moneypit.

that's why when you look at a successful kickstarter, you'll see how they talk about the team they've put together, and show you concepts for what they're trying to do. they'll talk about other companies that are involved, and what their past accomplishments are.

right now we've got one person (you) who is willing to provide money (likely a small amount compared to the total required to accomplish the stated goal, even though it is likely a large amount to you), no business plan, no team capable of doing the job, no support from the people you want to take part, nothing. much as i'd like shadowrun to go in a different direction, right now there's no way i'd hand my money off to you to get the job done because you have not shown in any way that you are capable of getting the job done. there are dozens of hurdles that need to be jumped, and you're spending all your time being upset that we're pointing them out rather than actually doing anything to actually be able to jump them.
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