Televangelist and media mogul Pat Robertson has criticized Dungeons & Dragons for having "destroyed people’s lives” on The 700 Club last week. He was responding to a question: “Is it safe for a Christian to enjoy video games that have magic in them if the person playing the games is not practicing the magic?"
Robertson’s response, in total was:
"The idea is not how close can I get to danger but how far away can I stay from it. I don’t know what game you’re talking about. I know there’s one called Dungeons and Dragons that literally destroyed people’s lives. They got into this thing and it was like demonic."
"I don’t know what game you’re talking about it. If it’s based on magic, or the occult, stay away from it. There are other games you can play. But don’t get into that. Is it wrong, or not wrong? I just think that we should flee from evil, period."
Robertson smoothly segued from the question about videogames to his reference to Wizards of the Coast’s Dungeons & Dragons, using it as an example of a game to avoid. Criticism and fear of D&D is not new, of course; it predates WotC’s acquisition of the property in 1997. If anything, it’s probably become less common as geek culture has become more mainstream. But Robertson’s comments are a reminder that such attitudes persist and affect perceptions of hobby gaming.