Artists Criticize WotC Using AI Art in New D&D Product

The world of Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) has always been enriched by the imaginative artwork that graces its rulebooks, novels, and merchandise. However, a recent incident involving the use of AI-generated art in Wizards of the Coast’s (WotC) new product, “Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants,” has sparked heated debates and criticism. This article explores the details of the controversy, the reactions from the D&D community, and the implications for the future of the game.

Table of Contents

What is Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants?

“Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants” is the latest supplement for Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition. It’s a product that has come under scrutiny for including AI-generated images, a decision that has led to widespread criticism from artists and fans alike.

What is WotC?

Wizards of the Coast (WotC) is the company behind some of the most popular and influential tabletop role-playing games, including Dungeons & Dragons and Magic: The Gathering. They have a rich history of collaborating with industry legends to create beautiful and imaginative artwork.

Key Features of Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants

  • Innovative Gameplay: Introducing new adventures and challenges for players.
  • Rich Artwork: A blend of traditional and AI-enhanced art that has become the center of controversy.
  • Collaboration with Renowned Artists: Including works from artists like Ilya Shkipin.
  • Availability: Available for preorder, with shipping starting on August 15, 2023.

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How to play Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants

  1. Preorder the Supplement: Available in both digital and physical bundles.
  2. Explore New Adventures: Dive into the new content designed for D&D Fifth Edition.
  3. Engage with the Art: Experience the blend of traditional and AI-generated art.
  4. Follow the Guidelines: Adhere to the rules and guidelines provided in the supplement.

D&D Artists React to the Incident

The revelation that AI-generated art was used in “Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants” has sent shockwaves through the Dungeons & Dragons community, particularly among artists. The reactions have been varied and intense:

  • Disappointment: Many artists expressed disappointment that a practice they consider to be inauthentic was used in a product associated with a brand known for its artistic integrity.
  • Concern for Transparency: The lack of disclosure about the use of AI in the creation process has raised concerns about transparency and honesty in artistic representation.
  • Ethical Questions: Some artists have questioned the ethics of using AI in a way that could be perceived as diminishing the value of human creativity and craftsmanship.
  • Fear of Precedent: There’s a fear that this incident might set a precedent where AI-generated art becomes more commonplace, potentially undermining the livelihoods of traditional artists.

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Why D&D Artists Criticize Using AI Art

The criticism of using AI art in “Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants” is rooted in several deep-seated concerns:

  • Artistic Authenticity: Many artists believe that the use of AI undermines the authenticity of the artwork. They argue that art is a deeply human expression, and the use of AI can dilute the personal touch and soul that comes with human creation.
  • Lack of Disclosure: The absence of clear disclosure that AI was used in the creation process has led to feelings of betrayal and mistrust. Transparency is considered essential in artistic creation, and the lack of it in this case has been a significant point of contention.
  • Economic Implications: Some artists worry that the acceptance of AI-generated art could lead to a devaluation of human-created art, impacting their livelihoods and the perceived value of their skills and creativity.
  • Ethical Considerations: The incident has raised ethical questions about the responsible use of technology in art. It has sparked a debate about where the line should be drawn and how technology should be integrated into creative processes without compromising artistic integrity.

The criticism is not merely a reaction to a single incident but a reflection of broader concerns about the intersection of technology and art. It speaks to fundamental questions about what art is, what it means to be an artist, and how technology is reshaping these definitions.

Where is the future of this game?

The incident has prompted WotC to revise their process and update their artist guidelines to prohibit the use of AI art generation. The future of D&D may see a more cautious approach to embracing new technologies in art creation, with a renewed focus on transparency and ethical considerations.


The WotC AI art controversy has opened a complex dialogue about the intersection of technology and art in the world of gaming. While AI offers new possibilities for creativity, it also brings challenges and ethical dilemmas that must be carefully navigated. The incident with “Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants” serves as a reminder that innovation must be balanced with respect for artistic integrity and community values. As the gaming industry continues to evolve, the lessons learned from this incident will likely shape future decisions and policies, ensuring that the magic and wonder of human creativity remain at the heart of the gaming experience.

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