WotC Responds to OneD&D Warlock Design Complaints: “It’s This Or Pinkertons”
SEATTLE–In an official response from Wizards of the Coast, the company’s OneD&D team said that the proposed changes to the Warlock class will remain in place until people stop protesting the company’s employment of Pinkerton agents to retrieve as-yet unreleased Magic: the Gathering cards from YouTuber Dan Cannon, who allegedly received the cards by mistake.
“We understand that there is a lot of emotional investment in the design of OneD&D from our committed fans,” said the company in an unsigned statement. “However, Wizards of the Coast is a company that is also committed to developing their intellectual property in a manner that allows them to ensure the quality of the game’s play and story for all of their properties. And if fans have problems with the use of Pinkerton’s to retrieve highly valuable company assets that ended up in the hands of someone who was not authorized to have them, whether or not the fault for such a mistake is ours, then the fans will be reminded that our game development is subject to our authorization at all times–one way or another.”
Changes to the warlock class included making them into half-casters, preventing them from obtaining high-level spells unless multiple feat slots were spent to obtain access to a single spell. Fans felt that this weakened the play and appeal of the class overall. They also complained that feedback forms were made more difficult to navigate, requiring demographic information first, such as the respondent’s age, income, current relationship status, employment status, street address, license plate number, top three phobias, and whether or not they have a lawyer on retainer or a living will. Responding to our questions, a Wizards representative explained that the new forms would be saved so respondents wouldn’t need to fill them out repeatedly, adding that they would be secured with a picture of “their most beloved item or person that, if threatened, would cause them to immediately do whatever the other party wanted.”
Wizards said that revisions to the class “will be made after considering input from playtesters, feedback from the community, and whether people are going to keep whining about how we manage our brand releases.” They continued by saying that further changes could be made to other classes, and that plans were already in place to do such should the incident with Cannon not drop off social media trends soon.
“For example, astute fans have noted that, as written, the wizard class could lose its ability to cast spells during play, should their spellbook get destroyed and they don’t have access to a spell to copy its contents,” the letter said. “Now, you might think from language in the rest of the text that this was a mistake on our part, but maybe it wasn’t. Maybe the wizard can lose their ability to cast spells. Maybe warlocks will, too. Maybe we make critical fumbles happen on an natural attack roll of 1. Maybe we bring back THAC0. There are a lot of things that could happen between now and publication, and fans should remember that we are considering all of their feedback, across multiple media, and there’s an inverse correlation between ‘community concern’ and ‘community input.’”
“So when you’re thinking about how ‘unjust’ we are with regards to how we handle our brand–a brand that isn’t even the game you want to play–,” the memo concluded, “maybe you should ask yourself how cool your warlock could be, or what they might become if you keep running your mouths. It’s this or Pinkertons. Your call.” Wizards also added an emoji of what appeared to be one person extinguishing a lit cigarette on another person’s face.
Third-party publishers have also been vocal about condemning the incident. Paizo Publishing responded to WotC’s statement by saying “(the company) would never hire armed thugs to strong arm fans into complying with what the company might want,” noting that many of their Organized Play volunteers would already happily badger and denigrate fans of other systems for free. Pinkerton’s said they would be pleased to respond to our questions in a sit-down meeting at their branch office, unaccompanied and without any recording devices.