I just wonder if it is legal (according to the OGL) to summarize/translate the key rules of the 5e SRD in another language (say German or French) using the OGL?



As long as you satisfy the requirements of the license, the OGL specifically grants permission to translate open game content.

From section 1, definitions part "g":

"Use", "Used" or "Using" means to use, Distribute, copy, edit, format, modify, translate and otherwise create Derivative Material of Open Game Content.

And section 4:

Grant and Consideration: In consideration for agreeing to use this License, the Contributors grant You a perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free, non-exclusive license with the exact terms of this License to Use, the Open Game Content.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Interesting. Ulisses Spiele (they are responsible for the official german translation of 5e) have explicitly stated that they are not allowed to provide a translated SRD. Or would this be a case of "translating it is allowed, but publishing it is not"? \$\endgroup\$ – Patta Apr 22 '17 at 18:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ That's strange. The OGL certainly does not prevent them from doing so. Both "Distribution" and "Translation" are explicitly permitted under the OGL, as you can see from the sections I quoted. That said they may feel a financial incentive not to produce a translation of the SRD. \$\endgroup\$ – Seamus Apr 22 '17 at 19:39
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    \$\begingroup\$ Or there may be other legal contractual obligations in play besides the SRD that prevent it. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk says reinstate Monica Apr 22 '17 at 21:23

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