Artist Dave Rapoza has quit working for Wizards of the Coast following claims recent promotional material used for Magic: The Gathering was generated using AI tools.
Although Wizards of the Coast refuted accusations that a recent image was generated via AI, fans and artists alike were quick to point out inconsistencies with the image.
The charge is particularly emotive given Wizards of the Coast confirmed last month that it “require[s] artists, writers, and creatives contributing to the Magic TCG to refrain from using AI generative tools to create final Magic products”.
“We understand confusion by fans given the style being different than card art, but we stand by our previous statement,” the company tweeted on Friday, before adding: “This art was created by humans and not AI.”
Noted artist Dave Rapoza was not convinced, however.
“Don’t play stupid, if you can’t admit this is obviously AI, then I’m definitely done working with you all – don’t insult our intelligence,” they said.
“And just like that, poof, I’m done working for Wizards of the Coast,” Rapoza tweeted over the weekend. “You can’t say you stand against this then blatantly use AI to promote your products, emails sent, goodbye you all!
“If you’re gonna stand for something, you better make sure you’re actually paying attention, don’t be lazy, don’t lie.
“Don’t be hard on other artists if they don’t quit,” Rapoza added later. “I can and can afford to because I work for many other game studios and whatnot – some people only have [Wizards of the Coast] and cannot afford to quit having families and others to take care of – don’t follow my lead if you can’t, no pressure.”
Rapoza later said that “there’s still money to be made in art, even at wotc”, but said their issue was that WotC took the “high road” and advertised that it expected its artists to refrain from using AI tools, “to gain favour from artists”.
“I work for other companies that use AI and use my work as well, but at least they’re honest,” Rapoza said.
When challenged if it was “too soon” to levy these charges against WotC, Rapoza replied: “I mean, if all you did was look at the Edison bulbs, you’d know it’s not real, but you can wait and see if you like.”