This answer states that Margaret Weis "owns" Dragonlance, and that she "won the rights to Dragonlance in a court battle." Is this accurate? I could not find any details of such a court battle, or indeed anything corroborating the assertion that Weis owns Dragonlance, from searching the Internet. Or does Wizards of the Coast still own Dragonlance?

Note that a license to produce products using an IP, and the IP itself, are two different things.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Who owns rights to a significant piece of IP can quickly become enormously complicated and can change both quickly and without public notice. If you are just curious, RAJ's answer looks like a good summary. If the answer matters, you may wish to consult a qualified IP attorney to research the question. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 14, 2019 at 20:54

2 Answers 2


As to your first question, about who owns the Dragonlance intellectual property, that appears to have always been Wizards of the Coast. According to a Q&A on the website of Tracy Hickman, the co-author of the core trilogy:

We were not unique in this: everyone working at the company at the time was under similar constrictions. We were being paid to create and play games and it was a condition of that employment that we hand over our rights to our creations. Those rights were sold as part of the purchase of TSR, Inc. by Wizards of the Coast and then subsequently owned by Hasbro when they acquired the company as a subsidiary.

As to your second question, regarding a court battle between Weis and WotC, I was unable to find any mention of such a case. The closest I found was the following paragraph from this article on Dragonlance on WotC's D&D website:

Wizards continued to publish Dragonlance novels throughout the ‘00s, but they opted not to release additional gaming books. Instead, they licensed those rights out to Weis’s own company, Margaret Weis Productions (originally: Sovereign Press). The result was the most prolific period of Dragonlance publication since the early ‘90s.

According to this archived post by Jamie Chambers on Dragonlance.com from January 31, 2008, those licensing rights reverted to Wizards of the Coast in 2008.

Update: As V2Blast points out in a comment below, it does appear that Hickman and Weis sued Wizards of the Coast for breach of contract by denying to give contractually obligated feedback. The filing can be read on document cloud and scribd. In December of 2020, they dismissed their lawsuit. In January of 2021, a new trilogy of classic Dragonlance novels was announced.

Update 2: In April of 2022, WotC announced a new Dragonlance adventure book. Margaret Weis has said on social media that she was not involved.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Licensing is not in any way relinquishing \$\endgroup\$
    – Dale M
    Commented Mar 14, 2019 at 22:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ As far as I can tell they just licensed it to her for several years and then did not renew the license, which is very different than "relinquish[ing]" it. It may well be that the licensing deal was part of settling some sort of legal dispute with Weis over it (Hackmaster was given a D&D license to settle a legal dispute over Knights of the Dinner Table) but I know no actual evidence of this. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 15, 2019 at 3:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ Probably not worth adding to the answer until it's resolved in one way or another, but... Apparently Weis and Hickman are suing WotC for "breach of contract, breach of implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, and tortious interference with contract". (Apparently Weis/Hickman approached WotC to negotiate for the license to write a new Dragonlance trilogy, and came to an agreement in 2019. WotC approved the Book 1 manuscript in Jan. 2020. However, in August 2020, WotC allegedly said they "would not approve any further drafts of Book 1 or any subsequent works in the trilogy".) \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Commented Oct 20, 2020 at 4:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ @V2Blast that suggests to me that they already have people working on DL stuff (three new settings to be released this year) or are going to flush the DL property completely. I'll bet on the former. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 20, 2020 at 12:11
  • \$\begingroup\$ @KorvinStarmast The lawsuit alleges that it was probably because WOTC was dealing with controversies about racist hiring practices and misogynistic employees are the time. \$\endgroup\$
    – nick012000
    Commented Oct 21, 2020 at 0:27

WoTC owns the rights, as confirmed by Margaret Weis herself.

In a post on her personal profile on Facebook (reported also on the Dragonlance Nexus group) she says that neither she nor Tracy Hickman owned the rights: TSR once and now WoTC have always owned the rights to the Dragonlance.

To clarify, Tracy Hickman created Dragonlance while he was an employee for TSR. We wrote the novels while we were employees of TSR. TSR and, later, WoTC, have always owned the rights to the Dragonlance. Tracy and I did not give them away, sell them, or lose them in a poker game.

Here one can find the original post on Facebook or on Twitter .


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