This will likely be the last post on this site… assuming you’re reading it at all, since it might be going down entirely in the immediate future. But, while I’m here, a few things to say at the far-earlier-than-expected end of this project.
When I announced the other day that Hasbro had requested I take the site and the cards down, I got a lot of feedback, here and elsewhere. A lot of people had some questions and suggestions and I hope I can respond to some of them before I go:
“I hate you Hasbro,” “Hasbro sucks” and any other similar statement: Okay, please don’t be mad at Hasbro about this. I’m the guy who made Shards of Equestria, and while I’m obviously upset the project is dying in its infancy I understand why this is happening. I considered SoE a piece of fan art, and at its best a parody of a legitimate MTG set. Hasbro thought differently and decided they had to defend their trademarks. This isn’t an act of malice on their part; it’s what trademark holders have to do. If anything, the legal people from Hasbro have been pretty nice about it, when they could have, you know, sued me for actual money or had my site deleted instantly.
“Get a license from Hasbro!” Well, yes. It would be nice if this could happen. It won’t. I wish I had a nicer way to respond to that, but it’s woefully unrealistic. Obviously Wizards of the Coast feels that the set is problematic to what they want to do with Magic: The Gathering so they don’t want it around.
“So why not make a different game? Or use original art?” I know that many people are making their own Pony-related games and projects with original characters. I support them and hope you support them too. But… that’s not the project I personally wanted to do. The reason I made SoE was because a bunch of my friends who played Magic and watched MLP thought a MLP Magic set would be fun. We think it is/was, so I made it. That was really the extent of the inspiration here. I wanted to have Pony Magic. Removing either the Pony or Magic part of that is kind of, well, pointless.
Finally, I want to address this one, because it’s the most common comment I got:
“Why would Hasbro do this? It made me want to buy their products!:” I am incredibly touched by the people who said things like this. You can see many comments on this Equestria Daily thread from people who have expressed similar sentiment–both saying that a Pony Magic set got them to try MTG for real, and just asking why Hasbro would be against a thing that promotes their own products.
Well as I mentioned before, that’s just not my call to make. I don’t have the right to tell Hasbro how they manage their product, even if I think they’re making the wrong decision. They get to make the rules about their property and I have to follow them. Look, I myself am fascinated at the idea that Hasbro was upset with me creating something that made more people want to buy their actual product. But that’s just how it works sometimes.
I hope Hasbro saw the feedback about the cards. I hope they’re reading this post. I say that only because I hope they know that I did this entirely out of love for both of their products and the hope that it could encourage people to get into either (or both) of them. And that hope still stands. This wasn’t about money or exploiting their property. It never was. I just wanted Shards of Equestria to be real. If Hasbro ever actually realized how popular a set like this would be, even as a joke, and that they could get something out of it, then they can have it. Seriously, open letter to Hasbro right here and now: I will mail you a DVD with every master file and the entire freaking website on it right now if you asked me.
But that all said, Shards of Equestria was, in fact, real. And for that, I just want to thank all of you. Thank you to my friends who helped me test it, to the random strangers all over the internet who sent comments and feedback, to the guys who said they brought it to Cons to show more people, to Sethisto and his team for the much-needed promotional support, and to every single one of you who gave a silly little Pony magic parody a chance and ended up having fun with it. Thank you.
Shards of Equestria