Abraham Lincoln

Episode 534: Manimal Utopia

February 10th, 2023 | Robin

Beloved Patreon backer Michael Gemar requests that The Business of Gaming tackle Wizards of the Coast’s latest adventures in managing the Dungeons and Dragons Open License.

We thought that would be one segment. Hear it, in real time, turn into three!

That leaves room for the Cinema Hut’s Science Fiction Film Essentials series to reach the sound era, and the 1930s, when the laboratory becomes a wellspring of gothic terror.

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Our Patreon-backed Letterboxd list of all films mentioned on the show is now up and running.

Also check out the Goodreads list of books mentioned on the show.

Snag Ken and Robin merchandise at TeePublic.

Rejoice, fans of Atlas Games and Ken and Robin. Atlas Games is running its most Ken and Robiny promotion ever. Atlas publishes books from both of us and for a limited time only you can get 20% off those books with the promo code KENANDROBIN23 at the Atlas Games store:

Track down foul sorcerers in a corrupt city, clamber through underground ruins and investigate the intrigues of your decadent rivals in Swords of the Serpentine, the GUMSHOE game of swords, sorcery and mystery, now available from Pelgrane Press.

The treasures of Askfageln can be found at DriveThruRPG. Get all issues of FENIX since 2013 available in special English editions. Score metric oodles of Ken Hite gaming goodness, along with equally stellar pieces by Graeme Davis and Pete Nash. Warning: in English, not in Swedish. In English, not Swedish. While you’re at it, grab DICE and Freeway Warrior!

Put on your flannels, grab your duffel bag of hardware and assemble your fake passports. Alert your retailer to the contents of their favorite unmarked warehouse. Delta Green: The Conspiracy, the revised, updated and declassified edition of the iconic 1990s sourcebook has escaped from Arc Dream Publishing.

4 Responses to “Episode 534: Manimal Utopia”

  1. chaz Elliott says:

    The best summation I’ve heard as yet –

  2. Doug Sundseth says:

    So, to go back to the origin of OGL 1.0, WotC offered not to enter into lawsuits over things that they probably couldn’t control (since mechanics require patent, not copyright and that’s almost all that they released) and allowed people to use a specific trademark and compatibility statement (that would almost certainly have been purely nominative trademark use). In return, they got a promise not to try to use things that might have also been covered by fair use (their trade identity items) and the right to similarly use their competitors unprotectable mechanics.

    When Darwin and Peter Bromley were involved in their long-running … kerfuffle … with TSR over this exact issue, TSR ended up by buying a warehouse full of game products to end the lawsuit that TSR started.

    The salient part of this whole thing is that there were plenty of people willing to go all Mayfair on Hasbro and probably establish all those fair use and unpatented rights firmly in law. And at the same time, Hasbro was very efficiently alienating their D&D customer base. (Much more efficiently than they had just alienated their M:tG base with those silly unplayable 30th anniversary booster packs.)

    None of the above should be taken as legal advice; talk to an overpriced IP lawyer if you want or need that, because (regrettably) am not one of those.

  3. Tom Vallejos says:

    I like “Things to Come”. It’s slow. I love the montages. The cast is pretty good. The book mentioned Nazis and Fascists but not the movie. Great production design. I saw an interview with Raymond Massey about this film. As I recall, Massey said the post-war scenes where Everytown was in ruins, the temperature was warm. But, when they shot the 2036 scenes wearing those light costumes it was freezing!

    Dr. X is interesting to me because it’s a pre-Code film.

  4. Bill Higgins says:

    As a lover of hard science fiction and of special effects, I was hoping that a Thirties SF roundup might include Vasilli Zhuravlev’s 1936 flight to the Moon, COSMIC VOYAGE (Kosmicheskii Reis). Alas, it did not.

    This film ought to get more love. A technically-competent woman, an elderly male genius, and a space-obsessed boy stowaway, all loyal to the Party, undertake the first flight to the Moon as part of a massive Soviet spaceflight program.

    Fine miniature effects. Plausible space suits. Silent, because not many theaters in the Soviet Union were equipped to show talkies in 1936. That just makes the film easier to follow! –unless you can’t read the Russian title cards. But some kind soul has blessed us with English translations here:

    Full film can be seen a few places on Youtube and elsewhere. Here’s one.

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