View Full Version : 2nd Edition Battle Bible Adendum

16-04-2017, 15:16
Hi all, I am waiting with hopes for 8th edition. My hopes will be a game system that is clean and fun but with complexity and individualization potential. If that is not what we get then, my focus will be on 2nd edition.

The Battle Bible for 2nd edition 40k has been around and has seen many versions. Some I hear had all sort of crazy fan injected stuff.

The Latest is cleaned up pretty much with official Rules/Codexes and White Dwarf stuff. I think most if not all was tournament legal back in the late 90's

This does not apply to the weird entry of the Exocrine Rules from Armorcast. There are of course typos and quirky editorial errors but the content seems to be pretty much on as of the latest update.

In another thread I wondered if an Adendum could be made.

Included would be sections of alternative 2nd edition rules.

#1: Game Designer articles in the Citadel Journal / and White Dwarf (many of which became part of later codexes) and some of the tournament legal wargear published in those GW magazines.

#2: Game developer articles published in the citadel journal that were never tournament legal.

#3: Games workshop approved materials (datafaxes, etc) by Armorcast/Epicast for super heavies and titans

#4: Scenario based rules for things like Pillboxes, calvary and characters, wargear.

Since the original authors of the Battle Bible had legal issues with GW, I did not know what the legalities for compiling other GW published/related data would involve.

I would hate to invest a few months and then have it scrapped because we stepped on some toes.

Any suggestions or warnings?


16-04-2017, 15:49
Items to publish would be in sections of Game Designer(like Andy Chambers), Game Developer(like Ian Pickstock), Independent companies (like Armorcast), Fan Submitted/GW Published (like Eldar Scout Walkers)and Misc (Scenario rules from the GW Bunker Campaign) for rules/datafaxes.

Included would be the AUTHOR, the PUBLICATION and issue, was it a Game Designer, developer or a chosen fan submission, and the actual game rules.

I am leary of reprinting all the 'fluff' that was part of those articles so just the actual rules.
What about the description of the Conversion Pieces??? or is that getting into more gray legal area?
A quick list of items

Eldar Scout Walkers
Harlequin Dreadnought
NeuroDisruptor wargear
Shadow Seer Psychic powers
Benathai Familiars
Hawk Skimmer
Eldar Destroyer Knight
Revenant Titan
Old Style Falcon (s)
Old Style Wave Serpent Firestorm Warp Hunter, etc
Phantom Titan + weapons
Warlock Titan + weapons
Drop Pod(s)
Thunderhawk Gunship
Pegasus amphibious transport
Chimera variants
Land Raider Variants
Assault & Death from the skies articles
Fortification and Bunker and Wraith Tower Rules
Warhound + weapons
Reaver Titan + weapons
Imperial jet speeders
Rogue Traders
Navigators + Psychic Powers
Bounty Hunters + wargear
Penal Legions
Human Bombs
Adeptus Arbites codex
Squat Engineer Guild codex
Squat Guild codex
Squat Pirates
Ork Tinboyz
Ork Pirates
Goffik Rokkerz
Gretchin Rocket Boyz
Squig Bommerz
Ork Squigoth
Tyranid Exocrine
Tyranid Drop Pod
Chaos Warp Canon
Chaos Caldron of Blood
Chaos special characters
Daemon World/Daemon Factories rules
Space Wolf special characters
Space wolf vehicles
Space Marine Bolter fire drills
Space Marine Combat Squads
Alternate Sustained Fire gameplay
Recon Pack, CommLink, Spectral Shield, Falcon Jets and many more wargear upgrades
Phoenix Lance and Eldar Disruptor Fields
Exodite Carnosaur
Yrrthilien Mournsoung and the Screaming Gale

I am sure I am missing tons but that is a off top of my head of the stuff that is almost impossible for the new player and old to find if they don't have.

An Adendum of those gaming materials would be valuable to interested parties.

So how can you go about making an addendum without getting into trouble with copyrights?

Commissar von Toussaint
17-04-2017, 23:54
The first thing to do would be to consult a lawyer specializing in copyright/trademark law. A good lawyer will give you a short consultation free of charge and in this instance you'd explain in detail what you want to do so they can do the research and tell you how it will go. This would likely include them reviewing the existing cases involving GW.

Since I'm not a lawyer, I don't know the nuts and bolts and there is a very gray area here because you wouldn't necessarily be plagiarizing if you simply summarized the rules.

However, your summary might represent an economic loss because of the content. It gets complicated and that's why you'd have to get an actual lawyer.

Included would be the AUTHOR, the PUBLICATION and issue, was it a Game Designer, developer or a chosen fan submission, and the actual game rules.

If you left out the game rules you'd be on solid ground.

You might be able to get away with a summary of the rule if you leave out the mechanic. So instead of giving the vehicle rules, you would probably be fine saying "This vehicle is roughly equivalent to a Landraider and effectively immune to krak missile fire."

Basically you could tell people whether the rule is worth digging out. A GW 2nd ed. rules collectors' guide, basically.

That would be quite valuable, actually. You could probably sell it if it was big and comprehensive enough.

And then people would pirate it and send it to each other for free - and you'd learn a valuable lesson about intellectual property rights. :p

06-05-2017, 00:23
1. Do not reprint rules unless you are certain that you have a strong fair use reason for doing it (like substantial transformation of the work, academic purposes, parody, etc.). That's potentially a lot of liability.

2. Copyright covers the expression of an idea, rather than the idea itself. You may paraphrase rules, and even end up with a statement of the rule that is mechanically the same, without infringing copyright. To determine whether something is a "copy" one would need to compare the expressions in the new work against those in the original.

3. Practically speaking, if you try to paraphrase all the rules and end up with the same game described differently, you are still very likely to run afoul of copyright laws, unless you know exactly what you are looking to avoid. It would be incredibly difficult to paraphrase all the rules in a game book without infringing by accident somewhere along the lines.

4. One possible issue to look out for is the question of whether the game as a whole, as a creative arrangement of different game mechanics, could be considered a single work and whether you would infringe simply by arranging all the same mechanics in the same way, even if your literal expression of them is different. My gut says no problem, because patents are the things that cover functionality like this, and there wouldn't be any copyright overlap. But fair warning, I haven't researched this. A creative arrangement of game mechanics could indeed be deemed an expression in a fixed tangible medium, much like a song is an expression of un-copyrightable rhythm and harmonics which come together to form a sum greater than its parts.

5. Economic impact is not a factor in determining whether copyright infringement has occurred. It is possible to violate a copyright without any actual financial injury to the copyright holder. And if the copyright is registered with the United States copyright office, then copyright infringement carries a statutory liability of $100,000 plus attorney's fees for each instance of infringement. If you sampled from 15 different magazines each of which is registered with the copyright office, that's potential liability of +1.5 million.

6. Even though an economic impact is not directly relevant to the question of whether an infringement has occurred, it *can* become relevant in terms of fair use. Note, it's not dispositive. Fair use is a balancing of factors, and economic impact would need to be weighed together with the nature of the work, the substantiality of what was taken, and the purpose and character of the infringing work.

7. If you compiled a collection of datafaxes, game design articles, game developer articles, and any previously published scenarios, and you did nothing more than gather them into a single book, I am comfortable saying, in my professional opinion, that it would be copyright infringement. Even if you pulled any one of these things into a single compendium (e.g. big book of datafaxes), it would probably infringe. However, everything is fact sensitive and there are no certainties in law, so I can't say without seeing the completed work and comparing it to the original.

8. This is United States law. I know that in most western countries, things are similar. But nuances can greatly shift an analysis.

9. Legal disclaimer. If I'm wrong, you can't sue me for it. I'm a lawyer, but I'm not your lawyer, and you shouldn't rely on this without getting someone to look into your particular situation.

06-05-2017, 02:31
It's pretty easy to infring Copyrigths, if the extensive work the guys from T9A is any indication.
You should write everything from scratch (no copy-paste anywhere) and even things like using similar stats may be a liability.
Basically, you need to make your own new game.

And obviously no mention of anything relate to the background either. New names for everything.