The following is an essay written by Darren Molitor, a former D&D
player. Darren was a very devout D&D player who sometimes played
marathon games that lasted for days.
The friends with whom this young man often played D&D, began
"horsing around" in a game of their own while preparing for a "Friday
the 13th party" on March 13, 1984. The "horsing around" went too far,
and a young girl named Mary Towey (18 yrs old) became the victim of a
"mind game." She was strangled to death by Darren Molitor.
Darren stated repeatedly in his trial that when he and another boy
tied Mary up, they were just "messing with her mind." By the physical
evidence in the case, a coroner testified that the death did appear
accidental; however, a jury found Darren guilty of murder in the first
The prosecution sought the death penalty, but Darren received a
life sentence instead. D&D was a major influence in Darren's behavior
at the time of the incident, but because of a lack of knowledge on the
part of the police regarding D&D, this area of influence was not
explored until it was too late to be considered "relevant."
Darren, in his own defense, never tried to excuse his actions. The
essay that he has written on D&D was done after his trial, and he
initially sent this essay to an elementary school in the hopes of
helping young children.
Prior to his involvement with D&D, this young man had never been
in any trouble.
Dungeons and Dragons - March 22, 1985 by Darren Molitor
I'm sure many, if not all, of you have heard about or played the very
popular game of "Dungeons and Dragons". Now I'm not speaking of the
board game of which there is one, I'm speaking of the game that is
played in your minds.
To give some backround of the game for those of you that heven't
had the so-called priviledgd of experiencing the game let me tell you
The game is called "Dungeons and Dragons" and it is a fantasy
role- playing game. As you can probably assume from the title it is
set in the medieval era of our time of history. Because it is a game
of "fantasy" anything is possible and being a "role-playing" game
means you act as a character of that time as if you were on stage. But
there is no physical action on the players part. Everything is played
or imagined in the mind. And you as a player, are the sole person
responsible for the actions of your character or characters. You
control him totally. His/her actions, words, feelings, thoughts.
Everything about this character you control.
To obtain a "character", a player must first roll three six-sided
dice. Add up the numbers rolled and write it down. A player does this
six times and then he must organize the numbers he has rolled to the
six characteristics of his character. The six characteristics are
strength, intelligence, wisdom, constitution, dexterity and charisma.
These six characteristics are the "heart" of your character. After
which the player may roll to obtain the height and weight or he/she
may choose it. The player assigns a race to the character, a class,
which is his/her occupation and the alignment. An alignment is the
character's attitude or outlook on life. The different classes are
many and each class has a sub-class. They are the following: cleric,
(druid); fighter, (paladin, ranger); magic-user, (illusionist); thief,
(assassin); monk and bard. The different alignments are: lawful good,
lawful neutral, lawful evil, netural, chaotic good, chaotic neutral
and chaotic evil. Now the player rolls a particular die or dice, of
which are many to obtain a character's hit points. The "hit points"
are the ammount of stamina or damage the character can sustain before
going into a coma or even dying. You then give him/her some money, by
rolling the dice, and equiping him with supplies, weapons and armor.
From here there is only two more steps. The first is to roll and
obtain the spells a character has if he/she is able to use them. Some
classes use spells and others don't. The final stage is picking a name
for your newborn character. He/she is now a true and real person in
the player's mind.
There is also a player called the dungeon master or DM, for
short. This player is usually more familiar and experienced in the
game. The DM is a VERY important part of the game. Also a very
powerful part. He/she plays the sole role of being "god" of the game.
The DM controls everything that happens within the game. The only part
of the game he does not control entirely is the actions of your
character. But he/she may constrict them if he/she chooses. He/she is
also in control of that player's character's life. The DM may decide
to destroy the character for some reason, but it should not be for any
personal reason and the DM should refrain from doing such actions
unless the player of that character has become uncontrollable and has
changed the fun of the game.
The DM has a lot of responsibility, as you can imagine. For
example, the DM must create an adventure or dungeon. There are many
books called modules with "dungeons" already prepared, but for the
most part the DM creates them himself/herself. He/she must create the
scenery (indoor, outdoor, underground, the various and numerable
characters a player may encounter, the temperature, the smell, the
monsters and the treasure. It is a very long and tedious process and
the average dungeon takes anywhere from 36-48 hours of work. There is
one case of the game being followed, that the DM, a lady, has quit her
job and does nothing except create and prepare a dungeon for her
players. She has created an entire country. The players of the group
support her living necessities. They pay for her home, her groceries,
her bills, etc.
The game is played with two or more people with the average
group consisting of 5, including the DM. The DM, as I have explained,
runs the show. He/she will describe, in detail, what is around you.
What action is taking place, what sounds you may hear, what smells you
may notice, etc., etc. From here it is the player's option of what to
do. The player must decide what his/her character is going to do. In
responce the DM tells the players of the result of their actions. As
I've said before, a character may do anything, I emphasize anything,
that a player wants him/her to do. For example; the DM has just told
you that you have come up a cave entrance. It is midday, warm, you
hear what appears as water running from inside, but you can't see
anything. The players now decide if they wish to enter the cave, throw
a stone in to try and locate the water, yell something in to try and
get a response or just ignore it completely.
Another example is; you are in a room or chamber underground
that you have discovered. There is a table, some chairs, a desk with
numerous jars on it. There is a lot of dust covering everything. And
in the corner a chest sits. As a player your first instinct is to
search the chest for some treasure. During the process of checking for
any traps and trying to unlock it a few orcs (a type of human-like
monster, resembling a pig) sneak up from behind. They are very angry
and have their weapons drawn and are about to attack. What do you do
now? If you are a spell user you attempt to cast a spell. You may try
and bargain with them. Or, amd most likely, you may fight them. You
draw your weapon and charge. Now the dice come in. The DM rolls a
six-sided, eight-sided, ten-sided or twelve-sided, depending on the
weapon and the result is the amount of damage to the orc. Now the orc
or orcs swing. The same process is used. And this continues until you
or they are dead.
Remember now, all of this is imagined in the mind. You can
actually see this. What they look like, how you're swinging, the
damage given and obtained. It all appears in the mind.
The reason for explaining so much is so you may understand how
the game is played. It may seem to be harmless and very entertaining
and it is entertaining, but far from harmless. I have had the experience
of the game for more than 3 years now and I know the effects of the
game. For the majority of those that play it becomes a way to escape
reality. It is a way of letting tension and anxieties loose. And that
is good. But subjecting the mind to the amounts of violence involved
isn't. It is far more bad than it is good. Especially to a young mind.
And an 18 or 20 year old still has a young mind. Its effects are both
mental and physical. It is in comparison to drugs, alcohol or tobacco.
It is very possessive, addictive and evil. Evil may sound wrong or
peculiar to explain a game, but there is no other way to describe it.
It is a device of Satan to lure us away from God. It is an occult.
An occult you say? What is an occult? Defined in American
Family and School Dictionary, a publication based on the American
College Dictionary, prepared by Random House, Inc., it is: beyond the
bounds of ordinary knowledge; magical; supernatural; mystical. Staying
on the same subject let's define occultism: the doctrine or study of
the supernatural, magical, imaginary, etc. Stated concisely it is the
participation or involvement in ANYWAY with fortune telling, magic
practices, spiritism, or false religions cults and teachings. Within
that category is using a ouija board, ESP, telepathy, horoscope, a
seance, yoga, remote influence of the subconscious mind of others,
self-hypnosis, following astrology and Dungeons and Dragons(R). They
are all connected with an occult or are considered occultism practice.
All such occults are condemned by God in the Scriptures, being an
abomination unto Him and are under His curse. To quote a passage from
an article written by Dr. Hobart E. Freeman, I write the following:
"The Scriptures condemn all forms of occultism as sorcery and
warn that.... they which do such things shall not inherit the
kingdom of God" (Gal. 5:19-21), but
".....are an abomination unto the Lord" (Deut. 18:12),
and ".... shall have their part in the lake which burneth with
fire and brimstone" (Rev. 21:8).
From earliest times God forbade occultism as spiritually defiling
(Lev. 19:31), and made participation in it punishable by death (Ex.
22:18; Lev. 20:27), and cause for rejection of that soul by God (Lev.
Dungeons and Dragons(R) is based on magic and the
supernatural. There is, in fact, a hard bound book entitled "Deities
and DemiGods" for the sole purpose of informing you of the "gods" that
are involved in the game. It gives complete details of the "gods" and
it expects you as a player character to pick a "god" to worship
him/her. To pray to, to sacrifice to, to obey. And to die for if
Not only is the game based on the supernatural and magic it
involves violence. Serious violence! The type of violence not allowed
on TV. There is hack and slash murder, rape, theivery, pillaging and
terrorism. And in the game it is natural and expected for a character
to do those things. A character must, at least, murder and rob in
order to survive. And it is the object of the game to survive. To do
whatever you must, to anybody or anything, in order to survive and
become more powerful and wealthy. The more you do those things the
longer you live. The longer you live the more powerful you become and
usually with power comes wealth.
You may be saying, "All of that may be true, but what does
that have to do with me (or my children)? It has everything to do with
you (or your children) if you (or they) are involved in the game. As I
have repeated several times the game is played or imagined entirely in
the mind. Totally and only in the mind. The conscious mind experiences
these visions as reality while playing. And if it is played, let's
say, 3-5 times a week, 4-8 hours each time, the conscious mind becomes
accustomed to such acts of violence. Then when the person is finished
playing for that day, it is all pushed back to the subconscious
supposedly. But it is known that the mind is very powerful and
unexplainable. It is very possible for the sub-conscious mind to
"overpower" the conscious mind. Suddenly you are no longer in total
control of your mind. The "fantasy game" becomes a "reality game". You
begin to live it for real. Everything you do, or say, involves or
associates to the game itself. You no longer play the game for
enjoyment, you play it because you feel you have to. You must have it
(play it) just like a person on drugs, achohol or tobacco must have
them. It is an addiction. And your mind is under the control of the
game. It is possessed by the game.
Now, you're probably saying that won't happen to me (or my
children) because I won't let it happen or I'm too smart for that to
happen. Believe me, it happens! And it happens to anyone. It has
happened to me. It has happened to many college students that have
committed suicide or have done some serious bodily harm to themselves
and or others. It has happened to many younger teenagers, 13 and 14.
The destruction it can cause to the mind and soul is incredible. It's
rather unexplainable. I and many others have had some very bad
experiences because of the game and I am writing too, on their behalf
to warn or make you aware of the game. It is dangerous and against
There are as I've said numerous recorded accounts of teenagers
13 to 19 and some older persons that have had some troublesome
experiences. Many have commited suicide due to the game. Another good
many have either caused serious harm to themselves or other
individuals. And some have coused the death of a friend or family
member by accident, but because of the "game", they took the "game"
one step too far. "Playing" it for real one time too many. For some it
was the last time they played it or any other game. Many were lucky,
but you may not be.
And the fact is, that you don't even have to be playing the
game at the time. The mind is continuously "playing" the game. You
could have played it 2 or 3 days prior, but your mind is still
So, please for your own safety and salvation and the safety of
others don't play the game anymore. If you don't play it now, don't
even start. It is more dangerous than I can fully explain. Don't play
with your physical life that way and don't condemn your soul to hell
by participating in the game.
A very concerned ex-player, Darren Molitor
If you would like to write to Darren Molitor or his parents
the mailing address is:
C/O Mr. & Mrs. Louis Molitor
St. Louis, MO 63110
Or you may decide to send a word of encouragement to Darren's parents.
There is another young man who is in a similiar situation and
he is 16 years old. He is guilty of murder in the first degree. He
never had a trial (plea bargaining was involved). His parents feel
that D & D was responsible for his bizarre behavior in the murder of a
next door neighbor.
C/O Mr. & Mrs. Robert Sargent
Kansas City, Kansas 66102
His parents certainly need a word of encouragement.
Reprinted with permission from:
P.O. Box 5513
Richmond, VA 23220
(B.A.D.D. stands for Bothered About Dungeons and Dragons - a national
organization concerned about the widespread playing of D & D and its effects.
They need your support. Please give generously if you can).
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