Crime Scene Sunday: Sabotage

This World War II poster illustrates the military connotations of sabotage, but there are other meanings of the word which can also be applied to a D&D game.

One regular feature of this Web log is Crime Scene Sunday, in which the author examines some form of criminal activity, considers how a villain may use that particular crime in a Dungeons & Dragons game, and provides one or more examples of that particular misdeed in a D&D campaign setting. As the name implies, such entries are posted on Sunday.

This week’s crime is sabotage. Beyond he term’s typical usage to describe saboteurs acting on behalf of one side of a military conflict, the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary defines the term as “an act or process tending to hamper or hurt” with added connotations of “deliberate subversion.” Wikipedia’s definition focuses still more, calling sabotage “a deliberate action aimed at weakening another entity through subversion, obstruction, disruption, or destruction.”

Based upon these definitions, sabotage appears to be a very versatile crime. It can be committed by directly performing a subversive act, or even by failing to act. In some cases, sabotage can be committed without acting outside of one’s vocational responsibilities, simply by the perpetrator opposing an initiative that he knows needs to move forward. Continue reading