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are Kobolds public domain?
Posted: 24 September 2012 11:49 AM   [ Ignore ]
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it’s hard to know what’s safe to use and what in the RPG genre is proprietary to wizards coast.

i figure, orcs and high elves are safe since they were in the LOTR books before forgotten realms existed.

but, making high elves look like Hugo Weaving would be infringement LOL


and hair-do’s.  the sailor moon is distinctive.

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Posted: 24 September 2012 11:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Well, WotC converted Kobolds to Star Wars, but I guess that’s still WotC….

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Posted: 24 September 2012 11:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Kobolds are creatures from Germanic folklore, the equivalent (apparently) to the English Boggart.  Wizards of the Coast just nabbed them from folklore for their games, so as long as you’re not making them look exactly like versions from the books then you’re alright.  They existed (arguably LOL ) way before WotC ever did.

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Posted: 24 September 2012 12:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I hate to nit-pick, but Tolkien iss till in copyright so having something in the LotR doesn’t make it public domain - far from it. As Kachi says, the name is fine but the D&D Kobold is a unique creature and I doubt you could copy it legitimately.

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Posted: 24 September 2012 12:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Richard Haseltine - 24 September 2012 12:19 PM

I doubt you could copy it legitimately.

I doubt the OP was intending to steal artwork smile You can certainly make Kobolds inspired by your favorite entertainment though.

People do it all the time. Unless you steal particular imagery its all good. Kobolds are fairly generic these days and so many iterations of them have been made that WOTC doesn’t really have anything to protect.

EDIT: Same for that Tolkien guy, pretty much anything in LOTR has been redone a billion times. Just stay away from the character/location names!

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Posted: 24 September 2012 12:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Misty Whisky - 24 September 2012 11:49 AM

it’s hard to know what’s safe to use and what in the RPG genre is proprietary to wizards coast.

i figure, orcs and high elves are safe since they were in the LOTR books before forgotten realms existed.

but, making high elves look like Hugo Weaving would be infringement LOL


and hair-do’s.  the sailor moon is distinctive.

Don’t get me started on T$R’s attempts to copyright terms and concepts that were far older than Gary Gygax.  (one of the many things that turned me off of D&D, way back before 3rd ed even existed.)  While the exact expressions of many of the creatures are copyright WotC, the terms and creatures themselves are generally open, so long as you don’t copy WotC too closely (and even then, there is a lot of wiggle room.)

“Orc” as word meaning monster appears in Beowulf.

“Elf”  (or more specifically Aelf) is also from Old English.

Kobold is, as said, a Germanic sprite.

A quick type of whatever critter you’re looking at into wikipedia should give enough information to head off in your own direction for any of them.

(And Sailor Moon’s hair isn’t that distinctive, (well, the buns and ponytails), as I’m fairly certain I’ve seen it in other anime.  (Don’t ask me which one.  Anime makes nice background noise when trying to write at 1 in the morning.))

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Posted: 24 September 2012 12:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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DaWaterRat - 24 September 2012 12:44 PM

(And Sailor Moon’s hair isn’t that distinctive, (well, the buns and ponytails), as I’m fairly certain I’ve seen it in other anime.

Seen one seen em all smile But seriously the culture of anime is to heavily borrow from each other so it’s rare to find something truly exclusive. The combination of elements or events is what makes each anime have it’s own personality.

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Posted: 24 September 2012 01:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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larsmidnatt - 24 September 2012 12:27 PM
Richard Haseltine - 24 September 2012 12:19 PM

I doubt you could copy it legitimately.

I doubt the OP was intending to steal artwork smile You can certainly make Kobolds inspired by your favorite entertainment though.

People do it all the time. Unless you steal particular imagery its all good. Kobolds are fairly generic these days and so many iterations of them have been made that WOTC doesn’t really have anything to protect.

EDIT: Same for that Tolkien guy, pretty much anything in LOTR has been redone a billion times. Just stay away from the character/location names!

 

Tolkien totally used ‘The Ring of the Nibelung’ by Richard Wagner.


i’m toying with the monsters from the cupboard and was thinking of calling them Kobolds for my illustrations, a version of kobolds to be cuter. 


all the kewl myth beings are taken. whine, lol. 


i’ve been calling creatures in my books spirits or demons or gods.  but, to start a new line in the RPG genre, i feel like i need to establish recognizable races - without stepping on the toes of woc or tokyopop.

 

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Posted: 24 September 2012 01:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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I always wanted to write a heroic fantasy novel with an intelligent kobald as a main character.

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Posted: 24 September 2012 01:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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DaWaterRat - 24 September 2012 12:44 PM

snip ...  Anime makes nice background noise when trying to write at 1 in the morning.))

yep!  LOL 

Trinity Blood at the moment.

 

 

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Posted: 24 September 2012 01:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Misty Whisky - 24 September 2012 01:09 PM
larsmidnatt - 24 September 2012 12:27 PM
Richard Haseltine - 24 September 2012 12:19 PM

I doubt you could copy it legitimately.

I doubt the OP was intending to steal artwork smile You can certainly make Kobolds inspired by your favorite entertainment though.

People do it all the time. Unless you steal particular imagery its all good. Kobolds are fairly generic these days and so many iterations of them have been made that WOTC doesn’t really have anything to protect.

EDIT: Same for that Tolkien guy, pretty much anything in LOTR has been redone a billion times. Just stay away from the character/location names!

 

Tolkien totally used ‘The Ring of the Nibelung’ by Richard Wagner.


i’m toying with the monsters from the cupboard and was thinking of calling them Kobolds for my illustrations, a version of kobolds to be cuter. 


all the kewl myth beings are taken. whine, lol. 


i’ve been calling creatures in my books spirits or demons or gods.  but, to start a new line in the RPG genre, i feel like i need to establish recognizable races - without stepping on the toes of woc or tokyopop.

At times like this, I take a deep breath and repeat Ecclesiastes 1:9

“What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done; there is nothing new under the sun.”

Then I go ahead and do whatever the heck I want without worrying if it’s “Been done”

As a long time gamer (25+ years), I don’t think you need to establish “new” races.  You just need to make them suitable to your game world.  (See TV Tropes “Call a Rabbit a Smerp” and the various “Our x are Different”... note the lack of links, for everyone’s safety.)

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Posted: 24 September 2012 01:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Kobolds existed prior to wotc. I’d just do some research, find out how the original fairy ones were supposed to appear and go for the classic look. Sometimes WOTC bugs me… They think they own everyhting under the sun… But truth is they borrow a lot too. =-)

You can’t copywrite a kobold. You can copyrwrite the ‘expression’ of the idea. So, make up a new idea, and go fot it. The d&d ones were kind of annoying anyway.

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Posted: 24 September 2012 01:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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The only Kobolds I’ve seen were in the Suikoden series of video games. They were short bipedal dogs who were sentient with a bravado and gusto for fighting with swords and a fierce loyalty to their own kind and friends they made along the way. Are there other kinds of Kobolds?

Edit: Never mind, I googled it. I think I like the doggie Kobolds better, lol.

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Posted: 24 September 2012 06:12 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Misty Whisky - 24 September 2012 01:09 PM
larsmidnatt - 24 September 2012 12:27 PM
Richard Haseltine - 24 September 2012 12:19 PM

I doubt you could copy it legitimately.

I doubt the OP was intending to steal artwork smile You can certainly make Kobolds inspired by your favorite entertainment though.

People do it all the time. Unless you steal particular imagery its all good. Kobolds are fairly generic these days and so many iterations of them have been made that WOTC doesn’t really have anything to protect.

EDIT: Same for that Tolkien guy, pretty much anything in LOTR has been redone a billion times. Just stay away from the character/location names!

 

Tolkien totally used ‘The Ring of the Nibelung’ by Richard Wagner.


i’m toying with the monsters from the cupboard and was thinking of calling them Kobolds for my illustrations, a version of kobolds to be cuter. 


all the kewl myth beings are taken. whine, lol. 


i’ve been calling creatures in my books spirits or demons or gods.  but, to start a new line in the RPG genre, i feel like i need to establish recognizable races - without stepping on the toes of woc or tokyopop.

Nope. Tolkien hated Wagner. But they did draw on some of the same sources: the Nibelungenlied and the older Volsungasaga upon which the Nibelungenlied was “based” (well, significantly cleaned up, since apparently incest, cannibalism, wyrd, warrior women, suicide, and child murder are not favored topics of court romances raspberry).

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Posted: 24 September 2012 06:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Zaarin - 24 September 2012 06:12 PM
Misty Whisky - 24 September 2012 01:09 PM
larsmidnatt - 24 September 2012 12:27 PM
Richard Haseltine - 24 September 2012 12:19 PM

I doubt you could copy it legitimately.

I doubt the OP was intending to steal artwork smile You can certainly make Kobolds inspired by your favorite entertainment though.

People do it all the time. Unless you steal particular imagery its all good. Kobolds are fairly generic these days and so many iterations of them have been made that WOTC doesn’t really have anything to protect.

EDIT: Same for that Tolkien guy, pretty much anything in LOTR has been redone a billion times. Just stay away from the character/location names!

 

Tolkien totally used ‘The Ring of the Nibelung’ by Richard Wagner.


i’m toying with the monsters from the cupboard and was thinking of calling them Kobolds for my illustrations, a version of kobolds to be cuter. 


all the kewl myth beings are taken. whine, lol. 


i’ve been calling creatures in my books spirits or demons or gods.  but, to start a new line in the RPG genre, i feel like i need to establish recognizable races - without stepping on the toes of woc or tokyopop.

Nope. Tolkien hated Wagner. But they did draw on some of the same sources: the Nibelungenlied and the older Volsungasaga upon which the Nibelungenlied was “based” (well, significantly cleaned up, since apparently incest, cannibalism, wyrd, warrior women, suicide, and child murder are not favored topics of court romances raspberry).


i remember the incest thing in Nibelung translation.  Brynnehilde and Sigurd.
and a goblin with a ring.

there’s an earlier source?  it would be interesting to find a translation to read!

English sure changed a lot between Beowulf and Shakespeare.

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Posted: 24 September 2012 06:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Brynhild and Sigurd weren’t related…No, this incest is between Sigurd’s grandfather and Sigurd’s grandfather’s twin sister (conscious on her part but not on his). Look up the Volsungasaga; there are public domain translations available if you can stomach the Victorian purple prose. raspberry The original is from 14th century Norway and written in Old Norse, though it itself draws on even older sources, some of which are in the Prose Edda and Poetic Edda of Iceland.

Tolkien did a transliteration of the Sigurd and the Dragon portion of the Volsungasaga called “Sigurd and Gudrun” in the traditional Old Norse verse style. It’s very good, though it’s not the entire story. For the whole Volsungasaga, try William Morris—it’s in very flowery poetry which is rather antithetical to the Norse style, but it’s otherwise fairly accurate and free. There are probably newer translations, but you’ll have to pay for them. raspberry

EDIT: Oh, and Wagner’s Nibelung is based more heavily on the Volsungasaga than the Nibelungenlied.

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