Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

General feedback and discussion of the game.

Moderators: Forum Moderators, Developers

Post Reply
User avatar
iceiceice
Developer
Posts: 1056
Joined: August 23rd, 2013, 2:10 am

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by iceiceice »

This is a pretty interesting development.

Dave, can you expand on what this means?
Dave wrote: - Importantly, we want to clarify that while wesnoth2 is committed to being a community-driven open source effort we see the benefit of being able to have monetized distribution in some markets. The App Store, for instance, has been highly beneficial for Wesnoth.

To allow for this, we will ask contributors of core code and content to license their code and content to Wesnoth, Inc in a way that ensures we can do this.
One thing which was discussed (I think by Vultraz) on irc at some points is that Wesnoth Inc. wants everyone to start assigning copyright to their code to Wesnoth Inc.

This concerns me, and I'm generally opposed to it. Wesnoth has survived for years just fine with GPL licensing and each author retaining copyright. And afaik our distributions on the apple App store were legal. It's somewhat unusual to ask people to assign copyright for work that they do for free -- that's usually only done when someone is a paid programmer or artist, afaik.

If we assign copyrights to Wesnoth Inc., that enables Wesnoth Inc. to potentially perform a "clawback" in words of doofus-01 in the other thread, and relicense all the code and content under non-free licenses. Maybe that's not something we should be afraid of, but why create the possibility?

More importantly to me, it means that we don't even legally own the stuff that we made.

One of the things that I liked about Wesnoth was that it is a "communism" (in the words of aldarisvet). Basically everyone who contributes owns it equally. Actually even the people who didn't contribute own it, it's all free software. If the content becomes owned by a corporation then that's no longer true, it means that Wesnoth Inc. owns it.

I can understand why you would want to trademark the words Battle for Wesnoth, that makes sense to me. (It would be nice if other developers got informed of stuff like that earlier, but it sounds like communication might improve anyways after your suggestions in this post.) If Wesnoth Inc. is basically going to become the official distribution agent for Battle for Wesnoth, trademark is what you use for that, and to prevent unrelated people from posing as the official project, as you explained before.

But I'm pretty leary of assigning copyright of code that I made to some third party. I'd personally be much more comfortable with just licensing my code under GPL or some other open source license.

When you say "license their code and content to Wesnoth Inc. in a way that ensures that we can do this", is assigning copyrights to Wesnoth Inc. what you had in mind here?

Edit: Also, I asked a question maybe tangentially related to GPL vs App Store on Open Source Stack Exchange recently, and got an interesting answer: http://opensource.stackexchange.com/que ... h-cc-by-nd
User avatar
Eagle_11
Posts: 759
Joined: November 20th, 2013, 12:20 pm

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Eagle_11 »

Ive taken a look to that design doc and:
Attack an adjacent unit with one of their attacks.
ffs, atleast implement truely ranged attacks so the upgrade is worth a damn.

Something about interacting with villages beyond the point of occupying them, why not give player ability to raze and rebuild, or even found new ones, or any spell that does something with them, such as plague that depopulates one for x turns.

There can be done additional things with villages population being of certain race,if not of player's same race alignment will face income penalty, which then can get migrated to player's race to eliminate the malus.

Speaking of spells, are there going to be an forest fires spell for orcs ? or artificial midnight for undead ?

Buildings i assume are going to be things such as healing fountain(heals adjacent), marketplace(+extra income),guard tower(fires arrows on enemies), palisade(gives extra defense).
However doc mentions those are going to be akin to units, occupying space on the village tile, instead being incorporated into them, why not do that instead ?

Villages shouldnt give +mana too, there should be an scarcer placed, seperate resource node for it, otherwise you will see it may be very difficult for the underhanded side to turn a game, as he will face to winning opponent's units + spellcasting.

Having to equip units as spells in limited slots will turn the game even worser as currently the default mp factions lack many an unit already and if it gets even further narrowed down then everyone will play the same most easily efficient set 95% of times.

Still you havent thought of anything to combat mono-recruitment, continious recruitment of an single unit type that is.
see. Undead DA spam, knalgan dwarf fighter spam...

100% hit chance is exaggerated, no one does that. about 80% as base should feel natural, if you implement 'quality of blow' that is.
An strike can crit, deal full, deal half, or miss entirely, then miss chance would get reduced to give room for half-dmg.

Does absorb named armor and resistance co-exist ?

Under guardian it mentions ZoC will only be present during Guarding, this changes the game fundamentally as half the match is spent to open a dent in the enemy defensive line to pour through to encircle them. Im not sure if would like every unit to be skirmisher :/
Every single unit cannot retaliate unless in guardian, this would shift the balance too much in favor of damage first.

I can suggest different approach for thrown weapons, gaze attacks, and breath attacks. Those would get used during melee, but before the melee attack begins as an pseudo-ranged attack.
ex. Dwarf Fighter attacks Drake Fighter, lets assume fighter has 6-1 throwing axe and the drake fighter has 5-2 fire-breath attack. Before the dwarf strikes the drake in melee he throws his axe once, then the drake breathes fire twice, then finally the melee combat commences with the dwarf attacking the drake with his melee weapon.
User avatar
Pentarctagon
Project Manager
Posts: 4496
Joined: March 22nd, 2009, 10:50 pm
Location: Earth (occasionally)

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Pentarctagon »

Eagle_11 wrote:Ive taken a look to that design doc and:
Attack an adjacent unit with one of their attacks.
ffs, atleast implement truely ranged attacks so the upgrade is worth a damn.

Something about interacting with villages beyond the point of occupying them, why not give player ability to raze and rebuild, or even found new ones, or any spell that does something with them, such as plague that depopulates one for x turns.

There can be done additional things with villages population being of certain race,if not of player's same race alignment will face income penalty, which then can get migrated to player's race to eliminate the malus.

Speaking of spells, are there going to be an forest fires spell for orcs ? or artificial midnight for undead ?

Buildings i assume are going to be things such as healing fountain(heals adjacent), marketplace(+extra income),guard tower(fires arrows on enemies), palisade(gives extra defense).
However doc mentions those are going to be akin to units, occupying space on the village tile, instead being incorporated into them, why not do that instead ?

Villages shouldnt give +mana too, there should be an scarcer placed, seperate resource node for it, otherwise you will see it may be very difficult for the underhanded side to turn a game, as he will face to winning opponent's units + spellcasting.

Having to equip units as spells in limited slots will turn the game even worser as currently the default mp factions lack many an unit already and if it gets even further narrowed down then everyone will play the same most easily efficient set 95% of times.

Still you havent thought of anything to combat mono-recruitment, continious recruitment of an single unit type that is.
see. Undead DA spam, knalgan dwarf fighter spam...

100% hit chance is exaggerated, no one does that. about 80% as base should feel natural when.

Does absorb named armor and resistance co-exist ?

Under guardian it mentions ZoC will only be present during Guarding, this changes the game fundamentally as half the match is spent to open a dent in the enemy defensive line to pour through to encircle them. Im not sure if would like every unit to be skirmisher :/
Every single unit cannot retaliate unless in guardian, this would shift the balance too much in favor of damage first.

I can suggest different approach for thrown weapons, gaze attacks, and breath attacks. Those would get used during melee, but before the melee attack begins as an pseudo-ranged attack.
ex. Dwarf Fighter attacks Drake Fighter, lets assume fighter has 6-1 throwing axe and the drake fighter has 5-2 fire-breath attack. Before the dwarf strikes the drake in melee he throws his axe once, then the drake breathes fire twice, then finally the melee combat commences with the dwarf attacking the drake with his melee weapon.
This is experimental to the point that there's no firm timeline and may end up not even happening, so I think you're getting into the details a bit too much at this stage ;)
99 little bugs in the code, 99 little bugs
take one down, patch it around
-2,147,483,648 little bugs in the code
User avatar
Eagle_11
Posts: 759
Joined: November 20th, 2013, 12:20 pm

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Eagle_11 »

ah dont you worry, i know damn well how nobody will ever listen to me, anyways.
Andrettin
Posts: 187
Joined: September 2nd, 2013, 5:40 pm
Location: Vienna, Austria

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Andrettin »

iceiceice wrote:This is a pretty interesting development.

Dave, can you expand on what this means?
Dave wrote: - Importantly, we want to clarify that while wesnoth2 is committed to being a community-driven open source effort we see the benefit of being able to have monetized distribution in some markets. The App Store, for instance, has been highly beneficial for Wesnoth.

To allow for this, we will ask contributors of core code and content to license their code and content to Wesnoth, Inc in a way that ensures we can do this.
One thing which was discussed (I think by Vultraz) on irc at some points is that Wesnoth Inc. wants everyone to start assigning copyright to their code to Wesnoth Inc.

This concerns me, and I'm generally opposed to it. Wesnoth has survived for years just fine with GPL licensing and each author retaining copyright. And afaik our distributions on the apple App store were legal. It's somewhat unusual to ask people to assign copyright for work that they do for free -- that's usually only done when someone is a paid programmer or artist, afaik.

If we assign copyrights to Wesnoth Inc., that enables Wesnoth Inc. to potentially perform a "clawback" in words of doofus-01 in the other thread, and relicense all the code and content under non-free licenses. Maybe that's not something we should be afraid of, but why create the possibility?

More importantly to me, it means that we don't even legally own the stuff that we made.

One of the things that I liked about Wesnoth was that it is a "communism" (in the words of aldarisvet). Basically everyone who contributes owns it equally. Actually even the people who didn't contribute own it, it's all free software. If the content becomes owned by a corporation then that's no longer true, it means that Wesnoth Inc. owns it.

I can understand why you would want to trademark the words Battle for Wesnoth, that makes sense to me. (It would be nice if other developers got informed of stuff like that earlier, but it sounds like communication might improve anyways after your suggestions in this post.) If Wesnoth Inc. is basically going to become the official distribution agent for Battle for Wesnoth, trademark is what you use for that, and to prevent unrelated people from posing as the official project, as you explained before.

But I'm pretty leary of assigning copyright of code that I made to some third party. I'd personally be much more comfortable with just licensing my code under GPL or some other open source license.

When you say "license their code and content to Wesnoth Inc. in a way that ensures that we can do this", is assigning copyrights to Wesnoth Inc. what you had in mind here?
When I contributed to Argentum Age, licensing what I did under the CC0 was fine; probably it would be the same for Wesnoth 2?
User avatar
iceiceice
Developer
Posts: 1056
Joined: August 23rd, 2013, 2:10 am

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by iceiceice »

Andrettin, it was also mentioned:
Dave wrote: The actual gameplay code for wesnoth2 will most likely be made available under the GPL though we haven't made a final decision on this.
Usually GPL projects don't have or require a contributor license or anything else, everyone's rights are equivalent.

Also Argentum Age is totally different from Wesnoth and from the policies that Dave outlined above. In AA, Wesnoth Inc. basically owns everything and there's no copyleft aspect.

I mean actually, none of their games, Frogatto or AA, used copyleft licenses, afaik this is the first Wesnoth inc. project that is going to use GPL / CC-BY-SA, so I'm trying to understand what exactly it means.
User avatar
doofus-01
Art Director
Posts: 3923
Joined: January 6th, 2008, 9:27 pm
Location: USA

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by doofus-01 »

iceiceice wrote:Dave, can you expand on what this means?

Dave wrote:
- Importantly, we want to clarify that while wesnoth2 is committed to being a community-driven open source effort we see the benefit of being able to have monetized distribution in some markets. The App Store, for instance, has been highly beneficial for Wesnoth.

To allow for this, we will ask contributors of core code and content to license their code and content to Wesnoth, Inc in a way that ensures we can do this.


One thing which was discussed (I think by Vultraz) on irc at some points is that Wesnoth Inc. wants everyone to start assigning copyright to their code to Wesnoth Inc.
Another possible (and possibly incorrect) way of reading that is he doesn't want something like CC-NC material getting in there. :hmm:
BfW 1.12 supported, but active development only for BfW 1.13/1.14: Bad Moon Rising | Trinity | Archaic Era |
| Abandoned: Tales of the Setting Sun
GitHub link for these projects
Dave
Founding Developer
Posts: 7071
Joined: August 17th, 2003, 5:07 am
Location: Seattle
Contact:

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Dave »

iceiceice wrote:Wesnoth has survived for years just fine with GPL licensing and each author retaining copyright. And afaik our distributions on the apple App store were legal. It's somewhat unusual to ask people to assign copyright for work that they do for free -- that's usually only done when someone is a paid programmer or artist, afaik.
So to begin with, it's not that unusual for open source projects to ask for copyright assignment. The Free Software Foundation does this, as do other organizations. ( https://www.gnu.org/licenses/why-assign.en.html )

However, I don't think we need to require copyright assignment from contributors.

I'm going to outline some problems with the approach Wesnoth has used so far, and then I'm going to outline the proposed approach in Wesnoth2 and any future projects.

Wesnoth was started in 2003, before the App Store, Play Store, Steam, or digital distribution on consoles were widely used or even available at all. It was intended as an Open Source game project which people could collaborate on and reuse parts of in other Open Source projects. We used the GPL on all contributions to facilitate this -- it seemed like the license that supported the ideals we were striving for at the time. It has achieved this goal well.

Along the way, the App Store, Play Store, Steam, and other forms of distribution through marketplaces has become available. We launched Wesnoth on the App Store and Play Store, and this gave us a revenue stream which has financed a good amount of art for us as well as better servers. I think that being able to distribute Wesnoth on the App Store, Play Store, etc is desirable. It lets us bring our project to more users as well as giving us a way to generate a revenue stream which can be used to finance parts of the game that might be difficult to complete otherwise.

However, there are some problems with use of the GPL. Firstly, it is an incoherent license with regard to content such as art and music. Would it be legal to take the art from Wesnoth and put it in another closed-source game and then sell that game? Maybe. It's really hard to say because the GPL is more or less meaningless when it comes to content.

That is the first problem.

Secondly, we want to be able to distribute on the app store etc. Whether the agreements made when distributing on the app store, play store, etc are GPL compatible is very dubious. We are pretty much relying on our contributors goodwill in being okay with distribution on the app store. Thankfully everyone seems to be happy enough with it. But if a major contributor decided they didn't want Wesnoth distributed on any of these digital marketplaces I think that they would have very good grounds for having it removed.

Yet another issue is that artists and musicians often have different perspective as to the scope in which their work may be reused. Many artists are quite unhappy and think it tacky if their work is taken and re-used in some cheap commercial product (which is arguably quite possible and legal under our current licensing model).

For these reasons I don't think just having a blanket GPL license like Wesnoth had is ideal. I don't think it reflects our intent to possibly distribute our games on these marketplaces.

So, this is the proposed licensing model for Wesnoth2:

- Anura, the base engine is distributed under the zlib license. This is a GPL-compatible (in that it allows more than the GPL does) lice.se
- Other code written for Wesnoth2 is also available under the zlib license
- Authors of images, music, and other content would have a choice as to how to license it:
(1) The default: their work would be available under a CC-BY-SA license. This would enable others to use the work freely as long as they provide attribution and don't take away rights when they redistribute it. (Note: it would allow others to use the work in their own products, commercial or non-commercial).
(2) They could choose to make their work available under a CC-BY-SA-NC license. However, Wesnoth Inc would be given a license to use the work for commercial purposes. This would allow distributing the work on the App Store/Play Store/etc. This option would be especially encouraged for pieces that are highly game specific (for instance, a game logo or other very distinctive symbol or a distinctive major character in the game).
(3) They could choose to assign copyright to Wesnoth, Inc. In this case, Wesnoth, Inc will license it as CC-By-SA-NC.

I think this licensing model achieves our major goals:

(1) It serves the Open Source community very well. All of the source code is completely Free Software.
(2) It serves the independent gaming and Open Source gaming communities very well. We make all our assets available for reuse non-commercially and many or most of them available even commercially.
(3) It allows us to distribute on all the markets we want to, while not allowing someone to rip off all our hard work and sell it themselves easily.

Hope that clears things up. I welcome any feedback on this.

David
“At Gambling, the deadly sin is to mistake bad play for bad luck.” -- Ian Fleming
Andrettin
Posts: 187
Joined: September 2nd, 2013, 5:40 pm
Location: Vienna, Austria

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Andrettin »

Dave wrote:
iceiceice wrote:Wesnoth has survived for years just fine with GPL licensing and each author retaining copyright. And afaik our distributions on the apple App store were legal. It's somewhat unusual to ask people to assign copyright for work that they do for free -- that's usually only done when someone is a paid programmer or artist, afaik.
So to begin with, it's not that unusual for open source projects to ask for copyright assignment. The Free Software Foundation does this, as do other organizations. ( https://www.gnu.org/licenses/why-assign.en.html )

However, I don't think we need to require copyright assignment from contributors.

I'm going to outline some problems with the approach Wesnoth has used so far, and then I'm going to outline the proposed approach in Wesnoth2 and any future projects.

Wesnoth was started in 2003, before the App Store, Play Store, Steam, or digital distribution on consoles were widely used or even available at all. It was intended as an Open Source game project which people could collaborate on and reuse parts of in other Open Source projects. We used the GPL on all contributions to facilitate this -- it seemed like the license that supported the ideals we were striving for at the time. It has achieved this goal well.

Along the way, the App Store, Play Store, Steam, and other forms of distribution through marketplaces has become available. We launched Wesnoth on the App Store and Play Store, and this gave us a revenue stream which has financed a good amount of art for us as well as better servers. I think that being able to distribute Wesnoth on the App Store, Play Store, etc is desirable. It lets us bring our project to more users as well as giving us a way to generate a revenue stream which can be used to finance parts of the game that might be difficult to complete otherwise.

However, there are some problems with use of the GPL. Firstly, it is an incoherent license with regard to content such as art and music. Would it be legal to take the art from Wesnoth and put it in another closed-source game and then sell that game? Maybe. It's really hard to say because the GPL is more or less meaningless when it comes to content.

That is the first problem.

Secondly, we want to be able to distribute on the app store etc. Whether the agreements made when distributing on the app store, play store, etc are GPL compatible is very dubious. We are pretty much relying on our contributors goodwill in being okay with distribution on the app store. Thankfully everyone seems to be happy enough with it. But if a major contributor decided they didn't want Wesnoth distributed on any of these digital marketplaces I think that they would have very good grounds for having it removed.

Yet another issue is that artists and musicians often have different perspective as to the scope in which their work may be reused. Many artists are quite unhappy and think it tacky if their work is taken and re-used in some cheap commercial product (which is arguably quite possible and legal under our current licensing model).

For these reasons I don't think just having a blanket GPL license like Wesnoth had is ideal. I don't think it reflects our intent to possibly distribute our games on these marketplaces.

So, this is the proposed licensing model for Wesnoth2:

- Anura, the base engine is distributed under the zlib license. This is a GPL-compatible (in that it allows more than the GPL does) lice.se
- Other code written for Wesnoth2 is also available under the zlib license
- Authors of images, music, and other content would have a choice as to how to license it:
(1) The default: their work would be available under a CC-BY-SA license. This would enable others to use the work freely as long as they provide attribution and don't take away rights when they redistribute it. (Note: it would allow others to use the work in their own products, commercial or non-commercial).
(2) They could choose to make their work available under a CC-BY-SA-NC license. However, Wesnoth Inc would be given a license to use the work for commercial purposes. This would allow distributing the work on the App Store/Play Store/etc. This option would be especially encouraged for pieces that are highly game specific (for instance, a game logo or other very distinctive symbol or a distinctive major character in the game).
(3) They could choose to assign copyright to Wesnoth, Inc. In this case, Wesnoth, Inc will license it as CC-By-SA-NC.

I think this licensing model achieves our major goals:

(1) It serves the Open Source community very well. All of the source code is completely Free Software.
(2) It serves the independent gaming and Open Source gaming communities very well. We make all our assets available for reuse non-commercially and many or most of them available even commercially.
(3) It allows us to distribute on all the markets we want to, while not allowing someone to rip off all our hard work and sell it themselves easily.

Hope that clears things up. I welcome any feedback on this.

David
I think your reasoning is in general quite sound, though I don't see why art should be considered differently from code. Most importantly though I think using "-NC" licenses is not a good idea, as it has been ruled in Germany to mean that only personal use is possible, so at least in some countries it won't be safe to share -NC content. -NC would also make it non-free under most definitions (making a game using content licensed under it not be considered free software).
Dave
Founding Developer
Posts: 7071
Joined: August 17th, 2003, 5:07 am
Location: Seattle
Contact:

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Dave »

Andrettin wrote: I think your reasoning is in general quite sound, though I don't see why art should be considered differently from code. Most importantly though I think using "-NC" licenses is not a good idea, as it has been ruled in Germany to mean that only personal use is possible, so at least in some countries it won't be safe to share -NC content. -NC would also make it non-free under most definitions (making a game using content licensed under it not be considered free software).
Okay. What license do you suggest images, sounds, and so forth be licensed under?
“At Gambling, the deadly sin is to mistake bad play for bad luck.” -- Ian Fleming
User avatar
iceiceice
Developer
Posts: 1056
Joined: August 23rd, 2013, 2:10 am

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by iceiceice »

Here's an example.

In another post, a user posted a "Simple HTML5 Wesnoth Implementation": viewtopic.php?f=13&t=44416
My long-term goal for the project is to make a persistent, large world map, which player can fight over by playing games of Wesnoth. (Think of the board game Risk, but instead of rolling dice, you play complete games of Wesnoth.) As it stands right now, though, the game is just a simple implementation of Wesnoth-like gameplay in the browser.
Some people already had ideas like this. For instance in Bad Moon Rising, the large world map vs. small skirmishes is basically simulated using campaign mechanics -- each time you change from one to the other it is a new scenario.

Suppose I wanted to make something more like, a Wesnoth-themed version of Heroes of Might and Magic but with a better AI than either. (Not saying I'm actually going to do that :-p)

Under the current Wesnoth licensing setup, I'm pretty sure that I can make a game like that and distribute it for free without an issue. All distribution is under terms of GPL, so there aren't special rights that I need to have to do it.
Now, the words "Battle for Wesnoth" have been trademarked. So probably, I can't use those words in the title of the game. I'd have to call it something else, and try to find some way to clarify that it is intentionally wesnoth-themed and not just a cheap ripoff. But this might not be too hard.

There was a guy who made a free game called "Heroes of Wesnoth": https://launchpad.net/heroesofwesnoth
I guess that there was no trademark at that time. (Also it was mentioned here: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=26343)

If the assets are CC-BY-SA-NC, then at least as I understand from the license, there must be "no transfer of money associated to the exchange". https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by ... /legalcode

A lot of hobby game projects are free, but the creator still wants to have a donate button so that people can donate money if they like the project. Maybe they do this via Patreon or something. If I had a Patreon donation associated to the project, is that a violation of the NC license? Since with Patreon it's arranged like, the contributors are formally compensating you for releases of your work. (Edit: Assuming I understand correctly. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patreon)

Is "Wesnoth spin-off" still going to be allowed / encouraged after these changes to the project structure? Or would you consider a game titled "Heroes of Wesnoth" to be a trademark violation?

-------------

From my point of view, as a programmer, the arrangement you describe seems unattractive in that, I'm spending free time to help create a game / game engine technology, but at the end, basically you own the assets and I have only a limited right to them myself.

I guess I can understand that artists don't want to see their work "cheapened" but at the same time, that's sort of how sharing works. If someone uses my code in a poorly engineered project that's not supposed to bother me. Sometimes it happens that a free software library becomes associated with "crappy projects" because for whatever reasons, a lot of mediocre programmers with a common need find this library, find that they can understand it, and select it over the alternatives. Even if the library itself is good, I've never heard of someone try to prevent those uses because they affect the reputation of the library or something -- they just want as many people to use it as possible.

Has anyone actually ever attempted to make a "cheap commercial knock-off" of Wesnoth? If they call themselves "Battle for Wesnoth" and pose as the original developers, then you can fight it with trademarks I guess. But if they don't call themselves "Battle for Wesnoth" and just make some crappy look-alike, I mean who cares? Is it worth it to spend our time fighting such people, given that this is supposed to be free software anyways?

-------------

The other question that I have is like this:

In this post: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=44185#p597531

you described that Wesnoth Inc. was created to receive profits from sales of Wesnoth on iPhone, so that they can be received and spent without being considered personal income. So, it would be like just a piggy bank for the project, and you use it to commission art. Also, you mention there that it could be used to buy hardware for developers, pay for servers, and other things.

In the model you described in this post, it will be different in that Wesnoth Inc. does more than just hold money temporarily -- it becomes the copyright holder for many of the assets, and holds some exclusive rights to them.

If I understand right, Wesnoth Inc. actually has a pretty large portfolio of commercial art now, after all the Argentum Age commissions.

And I know that you didn't like it when I described you as the "owner" of Wesnoth Inc., because you don't take any personal compensation. But at the same time, it appears that you are free to use these assets as you please, you can hire people to do things for you using this money, you can buy things for people, and so on, and no one in particular needs to know about it if you do. And in this relaunch of Wesnoth Inc., you are going to select the board members from a pool of nominations, if I understood correctly. So even if you don't own all of the Wesnoth Inc. assets, you have a lot of control over them. (Edit: I write this based only on limited information I have about how it has worked so far -- maybe the charter you mentioned or other aspects of this will change in some way.)

A different way of arranging things would be, if there were something like a "Wesnoth Art Fund", which was strictly limited to, paying artists to create Wesnothian Art and release it under a CC-BY-SA license or similar. (Maybe both GPL and CC-BY-SA? Whatever.) Even if all Wesnoth activities at large wouldn't qualify as charitable, I think something like that might qualify as charitable anyways, and then people can donate to it. It also has a pretty limited scope and it's easy to understand what it is supposed to do.

Something like that also wouldn't be mutually exclusive with Wesnoth Inc. or other arrangements you want to make, so far as I can see, or even necessarily specific to Wesnoth 1 vs Wesnoth 2.

What would you think about something like that?
Andrettin
Posts: 187
Joined: September 2nd, 2013, 5:40 pm
Location: Vienna, Austria

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Andrettin »

Dave wrote:Okay. What license do you suggest images, sounds, and so forth be licensed under?
Well, it mainly depends on what your goals with the art are. I personally prefer to allow as much freedom as possible and thus license it under the CC0 or CC-BY, but you should use whatever you are comfortable with. I think it's just important to be aware that using -NC might have unintended consequences, so maybe in your case using CC-BY-SA instead of CC-BY-SA-NC would be better? (dual licensing it under the GPL as well would be a definite plus!)

The issues with NC were discussed in the FreeGameDev forums:
Julius wrote: http://www.heise.de/newsticker/meldung/ ... 51308.html
(German only)

But this case makes the "Non-commercial" option even worse than we always said :(

To quickly summarize:
A government owned radio channel (no advertisements, runs at a loss and is meant for public good) used a CC-by-NC picture with full attribution and everything on their freely accessible website and was sued by the photographer because of "commercial use". In the 1st instance this was ruled as correct as according to the judge "NC" means purely "private" use!

So especially if you are in Germany avoid the "NC" option like the bubonic plague!

However it seems like this is going in the next "legal round" and this ruling might be overturned later on.
http://forum.freegamedev.net/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=5377
Andrettin
Posts: 187
Joined: September 2nd, 2013, 5:40 pm
Location: Vienna, Austria

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Andrettin »

iceiceice wrote: I guess I can understand that artists don't want to see their work "cheapened" but at the same time, that's sort of how sharing works. If someone uses my code in a poorly engineered project that's not supposed to bother me.
I definitely agree. My thoughts on the matter of licensing for art being more restrictive than that for code are pretty much in line with what Dave said to TimothyP, in a post I had read some time ago (found it again now):
Dave wrote:
TimothyP wrote:Okay. Well, if I'm not allowed to pull my pieces out, I guess I'll just cut my losses, hope no one does anything with my music, and stop composing for Wesnoth. It's a bummer really, I like this team, and I really like composing for the game. We made some great tunes for Wesnoth. But I don't want people messing with my music. It just isn't right, at least not without permission or copyright expiration. Music is designed to be what the composer intends it to be.
I could say the same thing about my code. Why for music, and not for code?

We have consistently had this policy for ALL kinds of contents from the very beginning of Wesnoth.

David
Dave
Founding Developer
Posts: 7071
Joined: August 17th, 2003, 5:07 am
Location: Seattle
Contact:

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by Dave »

iceiceice wrote: Suppose I wanted to make something more like, a Wesnoth-themed version of Heroes of Might and Magic but with a better AI than either. (Not saying I'm actually going to do that :-p)

Under the current Wesnoth licensing setup, I'm pretty sure that I can make a game like that and distribute it for free without an issue. All distribution is under terms of GPL, so there aren't special rights that I need to have to do it.
Yes, we would absolutely want to support usages like this.

Under my proposed licensing model I don't see how this would be a problem. The only problem you could possibly come up against is if you wanted to sell the game and wanted to include some of the NC assets. In this case, well, you could probably take the effort to re-do the NC assets. Or you could probably arrange a simple deal where you give Wesnoth, Inc a small share of your revenue from sales in exchange for licensing of those assets. This would enable us to funnel more art back for better commissions etc.
iceiceice wrote: Now, the words "Battle for Wesnoth" have been trademarked. So probably, I can't use those words in the title of the game.
We will license any reasonable use of the word "Wesnoth" without problem. We would love to expand the Wesnoth universe with more games. We specifically won't allow someone to start profiting by selling a substantially unchanged version of the game on a store such as the app store or Steam.
iceiceice wrote: There was a guy who made a free game called "Heroes of Wesnoth": https://launchpad.net/heroesofwesnoth
I guess that there was no trademark at that time. (Also it was mentioned here: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=26343)
I think that's great. No problem with it.
iceiceice wrote: Is "Wesnoth spin-off" still going to be allowed / encouraged after these changes to the project structure? Or would you consider a game titled "Heroes of Wesnoth" to be a trademark violation?
It will absolutely be allowed and encouraged.
iceiceice wrote: From my point of view, as a programmer, the arrangement you describe seems unattractive in that, I'm spending free time to help create a game / game engine technology, but at the end, basically you own the assets and I have only a limited right to them myself.
Okay. So what licensing model do you think would work best?

Do you think we should have a licensing model where we can distribute our work on Steam/App Store/etc? (even for sale to generate a revenue stream). Or do you think this is a goal we should abandon and rely on direct download to PC's? What goals do you think we should have for our licensing and how should we achieve them?
iceiceice wrote: Has anyone actually ever attempted to make a "cheap commercial knock-off" of Wesnoth? If they call themselves "Battle for Wesnoth" and pose as the original developers, then you can fight it with trademarks I guess. But if they don't call themselves "Battle for Wesnoth" and just make some crappy look-alike, I mean who cares? Is it worth it to spend our time fighting such people, given that this is supposed to be free software anyways?
Yes, one fellow was trying to greenlight Wesnoth on Steam and sell it for himself. The trademark helps against this but is hardly a complete solution for a number of reasons.

And I'm fairly confident that the same would have happened on the app store except that a GPL project can be pretty easily forced off the app store by any contributor to that project.

iceiceice wrote: A different way of arranging things would be, if there were something like a "Wesnoth Art Fund", which was strictly limited to, paying artists to create Wesnothian Art and release it under a CC-BY-SA license or similar. (Maybe both GPL and CC-BY-SA? Whatever.) Even if all Wesnoth activities at large wouldn't qualify as charitable, I think something like that might qualify as charitable anyways, and then people can donate to it. It also has a pretty limited scope and it's easy to understand what it is supposed to do.

Something like that also wouldn't be mutually exclusive with Wesnoth Inc. or other arrangements you want to make, so far as I can see, or even necessarily specific to Wesnoth 1 vs Wesnoth 2.

What would you think about something like that?
So, the major issue here is that for there to be a Wesnoth Art Fund in the first place we would need a revenue stream. The only realistic way I know of to have a chance at a revenue stream large enough for this would be to sell the games on the App Store or other marketplaces.

How would we have a mechanism to sell the game and generate revenue for the fund under this proposal?
“At Gambling, the deadly sin is to mistake bad play for bad luck.” -- Ian Fleming
TC01
Posts: 2
Joined: August 7th, 2016, 4:58 pm

Re: Wesnoth2, Wesnoth, Inc, and other things

Post by TC01 »

Just for the record, and this may not be something you care about, but (mainline) art assets under CC-BY-SA-NC or with any other sort of non-commercial clause will also effectively prevent distribution by a bunch of Linux distributions (definitely Fedora), as non-commercial clauses are considered by {the FSF, the OSI, Fedora Legal, Debian Legal (I'm pretty sure anyway), etc.} to make a license nonfree.

As someone who enjoys getting Wesnoth from his system package manager, I would find this to be an unfortunate decision.
Post Reply