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Dungeons & Dragons: Adventure or Abomination?
The 700 Club's Anti-RPG Pamphlet

During the 1980s, Dungeons & Dragons and other roleplaying games grabbed the attention of many religious groups who saw it as a dangerous influence on young people (or, most likely, a way to get donations from worried parents). One of those groups was Pat Robertson's Christian Broadcasting Network, who published a pamphlet entitled Dungeons & Dragons: Adventure or Abomination?, and offered it to anyone who requested it.

This section of the website presents this pamphlet in its entirety, along with comments and corrections on the claims that are made within. Please bear with the poor image quality - this is a photocopy of the pamphlet that I acquired from the CAR-PGa's archives. I contacted CBN while preparing this page, and confirmed that this pamphlet is no longer available from them.

The copyright on page 8 says 1992, but a statement made within suggests that it was written sometime in 1986 (page 2, first paragraph), during the height of anti-RPG paranoia.

While this pamphlet may be a bit dated, CBN's attitude towards role-playing games hasn't changed at all. In a March, 2010 story celebrating Pat Robertson's 80th birthday and over 30 years of reporting, CBN News referred to their warnings on the imagined dangers of Dungeons & Dragons as "landmark work."

"The news department also did landmark work on such stories as the dangers of the artificial sweetener Aspartame and the game Dungeons and Dragons." [article]

Funny thing is, since the release of this pamphlet and CBN's reporting on this "danger" back in the 80s, Dungeons & Dragons has been going strong: it has seen three new editions, attracted millions of players, been translated into several languages, and made appearances in films, books, and television shows. Numerous celebrities, including Stephen Colbert, Vin Diesel, James Franco, Matthew Lillard, Wil Wheaton, and members of Weezer (to name a few) have told their stories of growing up playing this "dangerous" game. It has become firmly embedded in our popular culture, and inspired a whole new genre of entertainment.

That's quite an accomplishment for such an "abomination."