Kill the commoners with your own blade or the effects of your actions. Wage war against populations willy-nilly, blame a third party for the aggression. Increase the price of health care, then belittle people for getting sick or hurt in the first place. The mind reels at such cartoon villainy, but #GOPDnD can help you come to terms with it.
The hashtag, which appears to have originated from the Twitter account of One Shot podcast co-host James D’Amato, has been steadily gaining steam since it appeared last Friday. It usually takes the form of a Dungeons and Dragons campaign leader or dungeon master arguing for (or against) common decency in the face of a rogue player—either the GOP or POTUS himself. Many use spells or in-game terms that just don’t translate to normie speech well. However, some transcend the form.
Grab your bag of holding, we’re going in.
DM: The villagers made you their leader, believing that you'll fight the oppressive overlords.— Alie Caldwell (@alie_astrocyte) March 17, 2017
GOP: I give the overlords tax breaks. #gopdnd
DM: The orc says all elves should die— Sarah Miles (@SarahJoSmiley) March 18, 2017
Elf: I punch him
GOP: He's just expressing his beliefs. Punching him makes you worse than him#GOPDnD
"I cast Detect Evil."— IainNC (@IainNC72) March 20, 2017
"There's no evil here. Only alt-good." #GOPDnd
Most #GOPDnDers make use of their limited tweetspace to grapple with a single GOP-affected issue, framed in a way that would make Wizards of the Coast proud.
On “draining the swamp” and building the wall:
GOP:While the party is asleep, I pickpocket all of them to pay for the moat I haphazardly promised we'd build with the enemy's gold.#GOPDnD— Nick Driver (@NickDriver89) March 18, 2017
DM: The dragon has the princess in a cage— Keeper of Stories (@Tredain) March 20, 2017
Player: If she didn't want to be captured, she shouldn't be so suggestive to it. #GOPDnD
On health care:
GOP: You were hit for 45 points of damage— Kevin Boyd (@Kevin_Boyd_) March 21, 2017
Player: I use my potion of healing
GOP: It doesn't work, this is a preexisting condition #GOPdnd
DM: This scroll, while imperfect, will protect the lives of most villagers.— Alie Caldwell (@alie_astrocyte) March 17, 2017
GOP: I don't like the guy who wrote it so I destroy it #gopdnd
GOP: The healing potion is 5,000 gold pieces.— Political Hax (@SClayton891) March 20, 2017
PC: But we don't have that much gold.
GOP: No, but you have ACCESS to health potions.#GOPDnD
Assigning politicians or pundits D&D alignments like Lawful Good/True Neutral/Chaotic Evil, or comparing them to easily identifiable fictional characters, has been played out again and again and again. (And again—it might be time to read a new book, guys.) But the fact that the actions of the Republican Party, or the day-to-day doings of President Donald Trump himself, are so easily paralleled by textbook bad-guy behavior isn’t just hilarious—it is also concerning.
But the parallels only go so far. It’s one thing when a single bad or unfair player in a D&D campaign gets huffy, picks up his or her dice, and storms out of a session. But if the GOP storms out? If the president storms out? How does this end? Will they tear up the Constitution, hold the budget hostage, get countless people killed either by illness or military action? Does our future hinge on a roll of the 20-sided dice? Could that even matter if the leadership is weighting the dice, then disregarding whatever it says anyway? Will we be left sending a bunch of low-level adventurers, played by children, up against the Demogorgon?
Maybe it’s time to look forward to the next campaign. America Second Edition will probably have worked out the bugs in the system by then.