‘So we’re all basically playing a worldwide DnD campaign?’: The knights vs gnomes battle is on, and people aren’t sure which side to take

‘So we’re all basically playing a worldwide DnD campaign?’: The knights vs gnomes battle is on, and people aren’t sure which side to take

There have been plenty of smackdowns in the Year of Our Lord, 2024. It seems impossible that anything could top the movie theater-based Great Popcorn Bucket Battle, or be more important than the contest for the White House, but perhaps the most ludicrously unbelievable war of our time has just finished ripping its way through the TikTok community.

The battle, which was originally slated as a single day event according to folks on TikTok, has raged for days. What started as a relatively simple battle between gnomes and knights spiraled into a massive battle – one that drew in participants from all over the community.

Who is Crawly The Gnome Wizard?

@crawly_possessed

Нашел укромное место от ГЛУПЫХ РЫЦАРЕЙ

♬ sonido original – smith_aske

The Gnome Vs Knight debate is officially deep TikTok lore. The whole schtick appears to have originated with the user @crawly_possessed. The Polish content creator built a following by dressing in a lime green cloak, cotton ball beard, and pointed hat while equipped with a pink net, the kind used for aquarium upkeep. The outlandish costume is more than enough, but to sell his Wizard-Gnome persona, he crouches down in an attempt to make himself as short as possible, and wreaks mischief around malls, Starbucks, and even while alone in the woods.

@pintoffosters

what do yall know about crawly ???

♬ sonido original – smith_aske

Crawly has dozens of videos of his gnome persona shaking his net/wand at shoppers, going behind clerk counters, and menacing customers by swinging his net or hopping viciously.

@crawly_possessed

Глупые рыцари Я вернусь со своими гномами!

♬ sonido original – smith_aske

The first video appeared on the 26th of June. By the 28th, Crawly had passed the 1 million subscriber mark. After a plea for fans to follow his Instagram paired with the declaration, “Poor Knights will pay for hitting and hurting gnomes,” hit his channel that same evening, it jumped to 2 million. Crawly’s numbers have continued to soar (he sits at just under 5 million at the time of writing) and with it, the number of participants in the gnome war.

What is the Gnome Vs Knight War?

Several of @Crawly_Possessed videos have been taken down – with even more muted due to copyright restrictions on the original sound – so we might never know how this whole feud started. Some theorize that the “poor knights” are actually the harassed employees simply trying to do their jobs. They point to a since-deleted video filmed outside of Zara, during the incident, Crawly was ejected from the store, and one commenter laid the seeds of war, saying, “Bro, you need to bring an army of gnomes.”

Either way, our only remaining proof of the feud’s beginning appeared on the June 30. A video of Crawly being attacked by a “Poor Knight” – a man wrapped in tin foil and duct tape, with what appears to be a colander on his head – split viewers down the middle. Some sided with the Poor Knight simply trying to stop the Wizard Gnome declaring, “Your days are numbered crawly the wizard.” Others sided with the Gnome, “Crawly is King we say in unison.”

Gnome activity exploded. Copy-cat videos flooded the app. People dressed as Gnomes, or filming from the Gnome’s point of view launched their attack. The battle officially began on July 4.

The production quality of some of the participants cannot be overstated. Battles dotted with explosions, Wilhelm screams, and murder galore flooded the app.

But for every Gnome, a Knight shared their own “experience.” According to one TikToker, it was the “Nerds with armor” who made up the knights without fully understanding what the war was about in the first place.

They jumped on the trend, happy to have an excuse to murder some Gnomes and look fly while doing it.

The feud gained enough traction to gain the attention of big brands like Lidi and Nivea, and with that, all of Fantasy-Tok was suddenly on call. As the high council summoned to Rivendell, would-be allies rushed to join the posting frenzy.

@wothius

The Wizards will find out who did this! @CRAWLY @Robert If either of your sides is involved in this, you will pay! #gnome #knight

♬ original sound – Nick

The Mermaids, Wizards, Fairies, Hill Giants,  River Sirens, and dozens of other TikTok “clans” joined the fight. Each one somehow creating better content than the last.

The Aftermath of the Gnome War.

@vainvirgos

After being asked if they’ll join the fight against the gnomes #knight #gnomes #fantasy #paladin

♬ original sound – Vain Virgo

In the aftermath of the gnome war, it’s hard to know which side emerged victorious, but at least one video has declared the pint-sized pests victorious.

@gnome.scout2

My fellow gnomes, we won!! TONIGHT… we celevrate!!!!!!!!@CRAWLY #gnomesoftiktok #gnomes #gnomevsknight #victory

♬ sonido original – smith_aske

There were far more “Returning Home” videos from the Gnome’s POV, but just like last time, the Knights might be a few days behind.

There’s no denying that more magical beings chose the side with the Gnomes, but more Knights caught the attention of big brands with their beautiful armor and masterful videos.

@wothius

Many lifes have been lost so far in the war between the Gnomes and the Knights. What is lost, can’t be returned, but we can ensure that no more is destroyed! @CRAWLY @Robert #gnome #knight

♬ original sound – Gnome vs knight

Though far more Knights seemed to be suffering more from the horrors of war. More than one video cropped up talking about the horrors of war.

The flood of content has slowed since the designated end of the battle, but plenty of fans disagree. Many of the videos declaring the war over have some variation of, “Until king crawley says war is over I’m not gonna stop fighting,” written in the comments.

There are still some stragglers holding onto the brief, fever-dream-like epic, but much of the fervor has died down. While many of us are over joyed to have even glimpsed the bitter end of the feud, it’s tinged with a bit of remorse. We’ll never know what it was like, to be there that day. All we have are the fragmented pieces of an epic we never got to see.

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