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Hasbro, the Parent Company of Wizards of the Coast, Is Woke, Broke, and Gutting the Games Division

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By Nelson Schneider - 12/17/23 at 03:38 PM CT

2023 has been quite possibly the worst year for Wizards of the Coast since the company’s founding in 1990. While Wizards began life as an independent tabletop games publisher whose new-fangled concept of Collectible Card Games ate TSR’s lunch and hastened the latter company’s downfall (and eventual acquisition), everything changed when Wizards lost its independence and was purchased by toy-and-game giant, Hasbro, in 1999. While the influx of massive corporate revenue streams and marketing apparati allowed Wizards to flourish initially, things haven’t been so rosy since the Grate Awokening.

It’s actually somewhat astounding how good a run Wizards of the Coast had under the Hasbro banner, between 1999 and 2019. Yes, there were missteps along the way, but none so disastrous as the 2023 debacle that was set in motion by diversity pledges made in the fateful Plague Year of 2020.

We’ve seen a year-long death spiral from Wizards of the Coast, first with their attempted changes to the OGL, then with their overzealous Woke censorship and retconning of massive swaths of D&D canonical lore. That’s not even mentioning the disastrous blows to their trading card games caused by a combination of overproducing, paying licensing fees for other media tie-ins, then going the extra mile to alienate long-time fans by Wokewashing everything with as many race, gender, and identity swaps as possible.

What’s more astounding than Wizards of the Coast’s self-immolation this year is the newly-come-to-light fact that Wizards of the Coast has apparently been the main revenue source at Hasbro for some time, with activist investor, Alta Fox Capital, going so far as to suggest that Hasbro spin Wizards off into its own separate business again. Hasbro itself, along with competitor, Mattel, has seen interest in traditional toys, action figures, and licensed IP tie-ins drop off precipitously. It seems that more recent generations of children have far more options when it comes to playing and learning, and as a result, they are rejecting traditional toy-play across the board. Things have gotten so bad in the toy industry that Hasbro gave its employees an end-of-year holiday bonus… by cutting 20% of its workforce and eliminating roughly 1,100 jobs. But those cuts don’t just include the flagging toy business, but actually cut broadly and deeply into the entrails of Wizards of the Coast, gutting the division in the process.

This kind of self-sabotage of the one division within the company that was acting like a proverbial Golden Goose, keeping the rest afloat, is incredibly suspicious on Hasbro’s part. There is some speculation that including Wizards of the Coast in the company’s drastic cuts is a way to trim the fat and smooth over any rough edges in order to make the subsidiary a more appealing product for some other massive corporation to purchase. YIKES! As much as I dislike Hasbro’s corporate management of Wizards of the Coast and the subsidiary’s stewardship of some of the most important IPs in roleplaying and strategy tabletop games, the possibility of Hasbro selling them to an unknown entity – maybe even a globalist abomination like Tencent – is chilling. Yes, it’s always possible that someone who really cares about D&D, Magic, and the rest will take Wizards off Hasbro’s hands… but smaller, independent businesses like that don’t have the kind of money Hasbro will likely expect to be paid. The companies that do have that kind of cash, though, are the ones we definitely don’t want taking over for Hasbro.

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