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52 Pick Up: A New Game Each Week!

EPILOGUE: BITTER, BRUTAL FAILURE

Gareth-Michael Skarka
April 19, 2001
King  

Well, folks...I honestly hoped this was something that I wasn't going to have to write.   However, I am afraid that my experiment has failed.   I wasn't able to give you 52 different game ideas, one per week.    After 10 installments, I'm sorry to say that I'm throwing in the towel.

My reasons for doing so are two-fold.   First, the time factor.   As some of you are no doubt aware, the spring and summer are boom times for the RPG industry.  No surprise then, that my schedule is getting to be more and more demanding, and a weekly column, especially one that requires constant development work, is just too much of a drain on that schedule.   In the past month, 3 major freelance assignments have landed on my plate (to my good fortune), and on the Synister front, I have a game line (UnderWorld) and a magazine (Thrilling Tales) to oversee....both of which are going to be picking up in the next couple of months.  Plus, development has begun on our next game line (stay tuned to RPGnet for the Press Release).  So, I'm afraid something has to go, and that would have to be the non-paying gig.

The other reason is much less pleasant.

In the 10 weeks since this column began, I have had to contend with 5 different people wanting to use these concepts for commercial purposes.  A couple were pleasant to deal with....most were not.   Most seemed to take umbrage with the idea that, as owner of the Intellectual Property (IP) rights to these concepts, I would prefer contractual agreements and compensation, rather than just signing away those rights, or handing them over so that someone else could "do something with them."

I've dealt with 5 of these folks.   An average of 1 every other week.

That, in and of itself, is merely an annoyance.   However, it is one more thing for me to have to deal with, in a schedule that is already full.   Simply put, if I ignore the situation, I run the risk of someone taking that as tacit approval, and then next thing I know, I'm dealing with someone taking one of these ideas with what they think is my OK.   So, I have to spend time explaining my position and defending my IP rights -- something that apparently remains necessary for as long as I write this column.  Given that I really don't want to have to deal with that, the only remaining solution is to stop putting IP out via non-commercial means.

My lawyer has also spelled out some potential nightmare legal situations that could arise from these folks as well....which I'm not going to go into here, for fear of giving somebody ideas of how they might be able to take such an action.

It's a sad situation, but apparently it's part of the world we live in now.

So, given these reasons, I'm bringing the curtain down on 52 Pick Up.   I hope that you enjoyed the 10 installments presented, and I thank you for your readership.

See ya around,

Gareth-Michael Skarka
gms@synistercreative.com

Gareth-Michael Skarka is the Operations Manager for Synister Creative Systems.  He has written and edited for games including Star Trek, Deadlands Hell on Earth, and GURPS.  He is the designer of several RPG systems, including UnderWorld and Hong Kong Action Theatre!. TQo0~^DҒt< ek&Ǿ$\۵ZFȃuwݝIŃU QYir2HR2.u3MFoعq]4#A`pP5(b& )b)ⰾp7(i<[-2gL#5[f g?*rVGf8*)s'+20ϟ̑F}KB<7wSL\gbvm9WiRބYŜvd y0'p2I_Fc2>#o A )VL[Qk?3`)<У[(*W.JH ?tXCt谙 X:@ \0w ~LqĤE-rFkYœj4q 5AQ6[AxG [>w|?( fХθY䝛$c=_qNĦoǸ>O_|&/_Mi7"宥CЧk0dӷLh;TmuCGU-!Ul{ h<\bQX.~"O2*yPcz!ŠGg

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Reshuffled: 52 Pick Up, edited by Chris Czerniak

52 Pick Up original run, by Gareth-Michael Skarka

Other columns at RPGnet

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