"Dungeons and Dragons Fantasy Adventure Game ("D&D Game" for

short) is a role-playing game for persons 10 years and older. In

the D&D rules, individuals play the role of characters in a

fantasy world where magic is real and heroes venture out on

dangerous quests in search of fame and fortune. Characters gain

experience by overcoming perils and recovering treasures. As

characters gain experience, they grow in power and ability." TSR,

D&D Basic Rulebook, p. B3.

TSR (Tactical Studies Rules), producer of D&D, was founded

in 1974. Estimates of its sales have been as high as: $23 million

gross in 1979, $45 million gross in 1980, $60-90 million gross in

1981 with net income of $28 million. In 1980, children age 10-14

bought 46% of the D&D games, those 15-17 bought another 26% of

the games. TSR has 140 employees, is producing academic area

games, translating D&D into other languages, producing a major

film, producing electronic versions, etc, They are one of many

companies producing similar FRP games.

Children and adults find the games exciting and challenging.

But the games include some aspects that need a closer look by

Christian children and parents. Some of these are suggested here:

1. There is a danger in becoming over-involved in D&D, spending

a large amount of time, money, and interest in it.

a. Gary Gygax, originator of the game, said that "the most

extensive requirement of the game is time." (D&D Basic

Manual, p. 3)

b. Articles in newspapers and magazines have told of many

people who spent many hours a day or week playing,

sometimes investing hundreds to thousands of dollars in

materials and conventions.

c. Again Gary Gygax has said: "You have to pursue D&D with

your entire soul if you're going to do well at it."

(Rolling Stone, Oct. 1980)

d. People tell of talking about nothing else, having no

friends who do not play, experiencing peer pressure to

play and rejection of those who do not.

e. Ephesians 5:15-17 tells us to make the most of our time,

and to watch carefully how we walk.

f. Philippians 4:8 says: "...fill your minds with those

things that are good and that deserve praise: things

that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and

honorable." Does D&D measure up to these standards?

2. There is a danger in players becoming too involved with their

imaginary characters.

a. People have said: "I've seen people have fits, yell for

fifteen minutes, hurl dice...when their character dies."

"It's when you take the game home with you, when

Johnny's mad for a week because you killed his

character, that it's an addiction." Gary Gygax said:

"when you start playing out a fantasy, it can really eat

up time and capture you totally. Most people can handle

it, but there are probably exceptions." A Dr. Douglas

Brown said: "If a person isn't too well put together to

begin with, it's not going to be good for him."

b. Many find D&D to be an escape from the real world and

find it more exciting. But some have found it hard to

separate the real from the imaginary and carry the game

into real life.

c. Matthew 16:24 and the verses following talk about

Christians "taking up a cross", not trying to escape

from the world, but giving up their lives for Jesus and

serving Him.

d. See Philippians 4:8 again.

3. D&D contains a lot of violence.

a. The whole concept of the game is to do battle with

monsters. Characters are equipped with various types of

armor, weaponry, potions and spells. It is necessary to

kill, not just the monsters but even humans, in order to

succeed in the game.

b. A central Washington police department asks as a

standard question of those arrested: "Are you a

participant of Fantasy Role Games?" Another source

stated that 60 suicides were directly attributed to D&D

in 1981.

c. Galatians 5:19-26 describes our human natures and the

fruit of the Spirit. What is it saying?

4. D&D is an effective "teacher". Do you know what it is


a. D&D makes use of several effective teaching/learning

techniques including involving the feelings of the

participants, role-playing, fantasy, and memorization.

The roles (classes, professions) include religious-type

roles (although not Christian by any means) such as

cleric, Druid, and monk. Other roles are that of

fighter, thief, illusionist, assassin, etc. The

fantasies include doing battle with devils and demons

using various types of weaponry, spells and potions.

Magic-users, elves, and clerics use spells, which must

be memorized before a game begins after consultation

with the proper book of spells. The spell must then be

spoken or read aloud in order to have any effect.

b. One of the book's author says that in D&D good is given

far more attention than evil, but a 40-hour-per-week

player claims that it is better to be evil because you

can do evil things and get away with them. An FRP games

representative stated in The Milwaukee Journal, 11/5/81,

that "these games are teaching the difference between

right and wrong." In D&D even lawful good characters

kill many other human characters in the name of duty to

eradicate evil.

c. Leviticus 19:26 says not to practice any kind of magic.

d. I Thessalonians says to avoid every kind of evil ("even

the appearance of evil" in some translations).

5. D&D claims to involve the players in the worship/service of

other gods.

a. Deities and Demigods, page 5 says: "Serving a deity is a

significant part of D&D, and all player characters

should have a patron god. Alignment assumes its full

importance when tied to the worship of a deity." The

Dungeon Masters Guide, page 25 says this: "Whether or

not the character actively professes some deity, he or

she will have an alignment and serve one or more deities

of his general alignment indirectly and inbeknownst to

the character. Another D&D book says that the Gods and

their Cohorts will occasionally assist their devotees

with aid, or harm them.

b. In Deities and Demigods, a total of over 200 foreign

gods are mentioned.

c. Exodus 23:13 tells us not to even mention the names of

other gods.

d. Deuteronomy 7:25 and Ezekiel 6 talk more about idols and

false gods.

e. See Galatians 5:19-21 again.

6. D&D contains much information and encourages activity that

deals with the occult world.

a. Dr. Gary North, a Christian economist, author of the

book None Dare Call It Witchcraft, and editor of the

Remnant Review, said this: "Without any doubt in my own

mind, after years of study of the history of occultism,

after having researched historical research, I can say

with confidence: These games are the most effective,

most magnificently packaged, most profitably marked,

most thoroughly researched introduction to the occult in

man's recorded history, period. This is NO game."

(Remnant Review, 12/5/80)

b. D&D uses hundreds of traditional Christian terms, but

not with traditional meanings. It also deals with the

casting of spells, magic, sorcery, witchcraft, voodoo,

demon and devil worship, ESP, levitation, etc.

c. The words demon, devil and hell appear a total of 225

times in eight pages of Deities and Demigods (pages

16-23), and encourages the worship of them as lesser

gods (page 105).

d. The words Devil, devils, and Satan also appear in the

Bible (over 150 times), but the Bible teaches something

entirely different about them.

e. Deuterononmy 18:9 and following tells us to have nothing

to do with people who do things in this area. 1 Peter

5:8 talks about the devil as a lion, looking for people

to eat! John 8-44 calls him a murderer and the father

of lies (a deceiver). Check other Bible passages for

more information here.

f. Ephesians 6-:11 instructs us to put on the armor of God

to do real battle with wicked spiritual forces, the

rulers, authorities, and cosmic powers of this dark age.

g. Philippians 4:8 again directs us to focus our attention

on something better.

All of the above information is available in a D&D handbook

from Educational Research Analysts, The Mel Gablers, Po Box 7518,

Longview, Texas 75607 for a $5 donation.


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