The Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game franchise says it will not allow artists to use artificial intelligence technology to draw its cast of sorcerers, druids, fantasy characters, or scenery.

D&D art is supposed to be fanciful. But at least one ax-wielding giant seemed too weird for some fans, leading them to take to social media to question if it was human-made.

Hasbro-owned D&D Beyond, which makes online tools and other companion content for the franchise, said it did not know until August 5 that an illustrator it has worked with for nearly a decade used AI to create commissioned artwork for an upcoming book.

The franchise, run by the Hasbro subsidiary Wizards of the Coast, said in a statement that it has talked to that artist and is clarifying its rules.

“He will not use AI for Wizards’ work moving forward,” said a post from D&D Beyond’s account on X, formerly Twitter. “We are revising our process and updating our artist guidelines to make clear that artists must refrain from using AI art generation as part of their art creation process for developing D&D.”

Today’s AI-generated art often shows telltale glitches, such as distorted limbs, which is what caught the eye of skeptical D&D fans.

Hasbro bought D&D Beyond for $146.3 million last year. The Rhode Island-based toy giant has owned Wizards of the Coast for more than two decades.

The art in question was in a hardcover book of monster descriptions and lore called “Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants.” The digital and physical versions of the package were selling for $59.95 on the D&D website before its August 15 release.

The use of AI tools to assist in creative work has raised copyright and labor concerns in a number of industries, helping to fuel the Hollywood strike, causing the music industry’s Recording Academy to revise its Grammy Awards protocols and leading some visual artists to sue AI companies for ingesting their work without their consent to build image-generators that anyone can use.

Hasbro rival Mattel used AI-generated images to help come up with ideas for new Hot Wheels toy cars, though it has not said if that was more than an experiment.

Matt O’Brien

Associated Press

United States

Jason A. Frizzelle (AP) and Firefly AI