First off, I'm new to all this OGL / Roleplaying stuff, so please have a little patience.
I've been designing a commercial, hybrid Mech Tabletop Miniatures / Living Card Game for a year now. Originally it was a MechWarrior project but the current license holders (Catalyst Game Labs) aren't interested in doing anything more than classic Battletech, so I've retooled it. Some of that older work is here.
Long story short, I recently bought several Starfinder books and I've been falling in love with it. I'm thinking about setting my game in the Starfinder Universe. However, I'm not sure I 100% understand this OGL thing.
I read I can't use any of the races and planets and specific tech mentioned in the Core Rulebook / Armory / Alien Archive?
So the only thing I can use is just the actual rpg rules for creating new stuff?
Can I say my product is set in the Starfinder Universe but in a different region of space, or is that also not possible?
A second thing is, while I've been developing my game I've been working on freelance 3d stuff for other games, as well as doing 3rd party scenery and bits. I know Ninja Division is officially licensed and they are doing all the characters, so is there any miniatures scenery that the SF community would like to see done? Other games like D&D, Pathfinder, Necromunda, they have lots of scenery for people to make modular boards, does SF already have stuff like that?
Thanks for taking the time to read and reply to my questions.
Basically, the OGL allows you to use rules content for a game (which includes most races), but not "Product Identity", a broad term that basically means "things that are unique to us and that we haven't made open content". This usually includes characters, planets, deities, art, and so on, as defined in each product using the license. However, you can only use that content in ways the OGL itself sets out.
If you want your stuff to be set in the Starfinder universe (or at least a sufficiently generic version thereof), you'll probably need to follow the terms of the Starfinder Compatibility License (SCL). Note that this applies to content published under the OGL. If you're selling other things - like scenery or miniatures - you'll probably need a separate license to sell those with a Starfinder logo. The best way to contact Paizo about that is to email firstname.lastname@example.org. Depending on the terms you negotiate and the products you want to sell, Paizo might permit you to use their Product Identity in ways you normally couldn't under the OGL or SCL.