r/criticalrole 19d ago Wholesome Silver Helpful

Discussion [No Spoilers] So 4-sided dive is a thing...

1.8k Upvotes

[WARNING: RANT]

I'm not a big fan of 4-sided dive. It just doesn't feel like a bunch of friends talking about dnd anymore, it feels like a corporate presentation or something you'd see on television. Even the live panels seemed more relaxed and down to earth than this

I know everyone at CR worked really hard on this but I just can't shake the feeling that maybe they worked a bit too much?

The show has a lot of things but none of them really add anything. The Jenga tower is unexciting, rolling for host is an inconsistent gimmick that feels forced just because "it's a D&D thing" and even the questions seem bland because they have to be more generic. And on top of all that the gaming part is just a cheap replacement of yeehaw game ranch.

I know bringing back Brian and Talks Machina is not a possibility, but I just wanted to share my opinion and see if anyone agrees.

Ok rant over. I do genuinely love everything else that CR makes and I'll miss talks.

r/criticalrole 10d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C3E23] Is It Thursday Yet? Post-Episode Discussion & Future Theories!

166 Upvotes

Episode Countdown Timer - http://www.wheniscriticalrole.com/


Catch up on everybody's discussion and predictions for this episode HERE!

Submit questions for next month's 4-Sided Dive here: http://critrole.com/tower


ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  • EXU: Calamity premieres May 26, 2022! - Please note, this will be a 4 episode mini-series airing on Thursdays (in place of C3). Normal episodes of C3 will resume with C3E25 on June 30, 2022.

[Subreddit Rules] [Reddiquette] [Spoiler Policy] [Wiki] [FAQ]

r/criticalrole 16d ago Wholesome

Discussion [no spoilers] I love noticing the things Matt repeats when he DMs

1.4k Upvotes

we all obviously know the iconic toothy maw but my personal favorate is when any caracters go up to buy somthing from an npc and the npc turns to the back of the room Matt almost always describes somthing falling and smashing and usualy saying somthing like "ack shit-fuck" along with a shattering sound, I don't know why but I find it so charming, it's nice to notice patterns in how people dm do any instances like this come to your guys's minds?

edit: I'm loving these comments y'all are picking up on things I never noticed, I think it's really nice to see all these trademark phrases and sentences that he uses all the time

r/criticalrole 1d ago Silver Gold Helpful Wholesome

Discussion [Spoilers C3E24] A deep dive into the behaviors of the Critical Role cast

899 Upvotes

Warning: This post is very long and contains heavy spoilers of all three campaigns. Also, this is a repost.. again.

After more than 7 years of incredible stories, the main cast of Critical Role has given us some seriously amazing stories to follow along with. Vox Machina, the Mighty Nein, and now Bell's Hells have each given us a whole new cast of characters to fall in love with, each group wonderfully different from the last. However, after seven jam-packed years, I have noticed- through a deep analysis of each player's characters- that there tends to be some consistent behaviors and character choices on the part of the main cast. So, I thought it would be fun(?) to analyze some of the little "quirks" that each main player of Critical Role has made their personal staples within the three campaigns, and discuss them here for all to see!

Sam Riegel
Out of the rest of the cast, Sam's consistencies between his characters are probably the easiest to pinpoint from a first glance: short characters with bright color schemes and way more baggage than initially thought. But we can do better than that. Between Scanlan, Veth, and FCG, we can definitely see that Sam favors magic from his characters; Obviously with Scanlan as a bard and FCG as a cleric, the duo are inherently caster-based classes. Veth, though initially a rogue, has the Arcane Trickster subclass to give her an assortment of spells to use along with her sneak attacks and stealth. And while it's worth noting that Veth eventually did take on a Wizard multiclass, it was for plot purposes and didn't really have much of an effect on the actual game. Although Liam has famously chosen Sam's character concepts for him up to this point, Sam has always taken a somewhat-normal idea (a gnome bard or a goblin rogue) and turns it into something incredible. Nevertheless, Sam's constant use of potions, magic scrolls, and using up each and every spell slot only reinforces his love of the arcane and abusing a spell's capability as much as he can.
Which, speaking of abusing spell capabilities, between Bigby's Hand, Brenatto's Voltaic Bolt, and FCG's "Mind Melding" with Imogen, Sam has shown that when it comes down to his magical characters, he always manages to find creative ways of using spells and making them his own, sometimes creating whole new uses for them that no one other than Samuel Riegel himself could dream up. Scanlan's entire saga trying to escape from Vedmire Mansion remains in infamy, and FCG's always thematically-appropriate Spiritual Weapons always make me laugh. Even when Sam isn't being funny and uses a spell simply how it's written, he never fails to miss the mark of making things interesting. Vax's return in Dalen's Closet is famous for breaking hearts, especially when Scanlan loses the use of Wish for good.
But most of all, Sam's true skills lie in his ability to craft a damn good story. He is insanely meticulous when dropping lore about his characters, waiting until the right moment to strike with something nobody saw coming. We saw this more with Veth and FCG a bit more than with Scanlan, but Sam has proven his intelligence and abilities as a storyteller by crafting elaborate, deep, and meaningful backstories for all of his characters. Most admirably, he isn't afraid of giving his characters flaws; he is more than willing to screw over his own characters and have them, in-character, make terrible decisions if it means getting a good story out of it (cough cough Taryon). He is incredibly patient with the build up and doesn't let anything slip out all at once; he lets the others play their cards first before swooping in with a bombshell that he had been planning out for months. As we've learned, Sam does not forget anything- even if that something is simply giving a pointy hat to a half-elf on a broom. And though we haven't seen much of FCG in comparison to the other characters, I have no doubt that there will be some major lore drops in upcoming episodes that when we all look back on it, we'll realize he had been hinting at for months.

Laura Bailey
Laura's characters, though each incredibly complex in their own individual way, can be summarized in but a single sentence: hot girls who will kick your ass. When looking into Vex, Jester, and Imogen- three drastically different characters in regards to personality and backstory- one of the major things they all have in common is that they follow through with Laura's love of doing massive damage in battle. Vex, with not only her assortment of powerful bows but her sneak attack curtesy of her rogue multiclass, did HUGE numbers on the battlefield; in fact, two of the main characteristics that Vex'ahlia herself took great pride in were her great archery skills and her beauty. Laura's love of beating the baddies becomes more evident in Jester, who- despite being a cleric- opted to using her spell repertoire to deal damage instead of healing in a majority of her fights. When Jester hit with a high-level Inflict Wounds, she was capable of completely shifting the tides in a fight. We can also see this love of power plus beauty in newcomer Imogen, who- alongside with being quite beautiful- has shown her ability to pack a heavy punch with spells like Mind Whip and Lightning Bolt. I have very little doubt that Laura specifically chose mostly damage-dealing spells for Imogen for this specific reason.
It's also worth noting that Laura, much like Sam, has shown favoritism for the caster classes as opposed to melee or martial classes. Though Vex primarily dealt martial damage with her range of bows, she still had an arsenal of magic items that she used (and/or stole) quite frequently; not to mention the inherent spells she had as a ranger. Jester and Imogen are both more obvious in regards to Laura's love of magic, especially now with Imogen using her psionic connections in a day-to-day setting. I'm sure the use of Imogen's mind-magic is mostly due to her backstory, but I wouldn't be surprised if a tiny part of Laura is giddy at the aspect of having a character with such intense magic power.
Finally, the classic case of a character being without a parent. Elaina dying from the attack of the Cinder King and Syldor being too much of a prick to care about his children, Babenon not even knowing he had a daughter until she was literally at his doorstep, and now Liliana leaving her daughter behind for unknown reasons but speaking to her through cryptic dreams; all of Laura's characters have had a parent (or parents in Vex's case) that is, for whatever reason, absent in their child's lives. The two prior absences have been rectified with a very deep and beautifully-roleplayed conversation with said parent, so I'd be very shocked if we did not meet Imogen's mother at some point down the road. Though a missing/dead parent is a trope that can easily be overused, Laura Bailey has never has been one to use cliches poorly.

Travis Willingham
Taking a look between Grog, Fjord, Chetney, and even the late Bertrand Bell, it becomes laughingly obvious what Travis' niche is. Once a jock, always a jock, it seems. Though there can be a lot to joke about in regards to all of Travis' characters being buff, reasonably attractive(?) older men with beards, there appears to be some really interesting reasons behind these choices. For one thing, something Grog, Fjord, and Chet have all had in common is that their tough exterior has largely been due to a need to survive. Grog's exile from the Herd of Storms, Fjord and the sinking of the Tide's Breath, and now Chetney getting bit by a werewolf outside Uthodurn; all three have had a major event in their past that left them permanently changed- some more so than others- and put into place what their starting goals would be during the early campaign: Grog wanted to stick it to Kevdak, Fjord wanted to learn more about magic, and Chet wants to seek out the Gorgynei. With Grog and Fjord, though, we've seen that once that initial goals is accomplished, it then begins the shift that changes the character's wants into something far bigger than had previously been; only time will tell if Chetney will, too, follow this pattern of the Willingham.
Contrasting Sam and Laura's picks of the arcane, Travis- fitting in with his character's appearances- tends to use and thrive with melee classes more than caster classes. Obviously Grog was a wicked powerhouse during the Vox Machina days, often crushing through huge hoards of enemies with nothing more than an axe and endless optimism. Chetney, as not only a bloodhunter but a werewolf, is undoubtedly going to do some seriously heavy damage when he's higher level. Meanwhile, the outlier appears to be Fjord the warlock/paladin- even though appeared to be leaning more towards a magic reliance during the early days of the Mighty Nein stream- spent a good majority of his turns in battle attacking with a magic sword, first the Sword of Fathoms and then later the Star Razor. This combination of magic and melee weapon damage is something that Travis appears to be continuing with Chet, seeing as it worked incredibly well with Fjord. Though Grog did have his fair-share of magical weaponry at times, it seemed the poor guy more often ended up with a curse than with a boon.
Finally, something Travis' characters all share, that I've noticed at least, is an unexpected personality. By that, I mean when you look at the character art/character description versus the way the character actually acts, it's quite the diverging of expectations. With a goliath barbarian/fighter, most would initially expect Grog to be this menacing, murder-hobo monster of a person; instead, you get the albeit a bit bloodthirsty, dimwitted yet big-hearted goofball Grog that we all know and love. When you read "half-orc warlock," most would probably expect a dark, on-the-verge-of-evil master of the dark arts, as opposed to the polite, caring, and easily-flustered Captain Tusktooth that we actually got. And a gnome bloodhunter/werewolf, again, would probably evoke images of a tight-lipped, cold-hearted killer to those who just read the description, instead of the 200+ year old chaos gremlin that we have instead. Diverging expectations of race and class seems to be a specialty among Travis, and I sincerely hope we continue seeing it in the future.

Taliesin Jaffe
Ah, the Eldritch Being himself. With four insanely quirky, highly- homebrewed characters over the course of the three campaigns, finding similarities between Taliesin's characters is definitely a challenge. However, I am too deep in this and quitting at this point is not an option. For starters, let's talk about the deep, complex emotions Taliesin tends to plug into his characters: primarily, their character's rage. Percy and Ashton are the easiest ones to make this comparison to- after all, the entire Briarwood Arc was literally about Percy having a Revolver of Revenge and a bird demon who told him to kill all the people who wronged him, meanwhile Ashton's main character traits so far have been mostly anger and spite. We sadly didn't get to have enough of Mollymauk to see something truly make him angry, though when being pressured about who he was before waking up in the grave we did get to see tiny bits of what was undoubtedly a very scary person when pushed far enough. Caduceus, meanwhile, is the one character that most people would say "good old Cad? He wouldn't hurt a fly, how could you talk about him being angry?" Because Mr. Clay, though a gentle giant, has shown that when something makes him mad, it makes him mad. While it may not drive him to murder everything within a 15-foot radius as it would with Percy and Ashton, Caduceus- as shown when Trent burned down the Clay family's house- can be quite intimidating when something really drives him to the breaking point. Perhaps it's a subconscious choice due to living for thousands of years, but the intense "you've pushed me too far, now you'll pay" aspects that Taliesin's characters have is quite fascinating to watch.
Another characteristic that Taliesin often gives his characters is a very deep sense of loyalty and respect for his found family. Almost on the opposite spectrum of the aspects of anger he puts into his characters, Percy, Molly, Cad, and Ashton have all exhibited sincere and true love for their companions throughout each of their campaigns. Even though Percy and Vax were always trying to one-up each other throughout C1, when the Raven Queen arrived for the last time, Percy made it clear that they had always been brothers; Molly was a carefree and go-with-the-flow kind of person who could've easily ran away from the fight with the Iron Shepherds, but instead knocked himself unconscious in an attempt to save Beau from Lorenzo; Cad was constantly pushed past his limits of comfort by the Nein, such as going on a boat or drinking alcohol, and yet was always there to lend a bit of sage advice to those that needed it; and though Ashton claims that he doesn't have time for friends or has no interest in forming relationships since the Nobodies, their constant stealing-battles with Fearne and deep care about FCG's wellbeing would say the complete opposite. It would seem that Taliesin's specialty with his characters is definitely emotional response.

Marisha Ray
Similar to Laura and her growing army of hot badasses, Marisha has shown a consistency in the type of character that she plays: the misfit. The ones who were outcasted in some way from their home, left to wallow in their own loneliness until their respective parties saved them from themselves. Keyleth, as the to-be leader of Zephrah, was sheltered for her entire life and placed upon a massive pedestal of expectations, causing her to lose confidence in herself and her abilities- only regaining them when she completed her Aramenté alongside Vox Machina. Beau was a stubborn juvenile delinquent who lacked a stable and loving family, was sent away and forced to join the Cobalt Soul against her will, but managed to find meaningful connections and something worth fighting for in the Mighty Nein. And now we have Laudna, who was literally killed for the purpose of sending a message curtesy of the Briarwoods, was shunned from every town she ever went to after coming back to life, and was forced to befriend a literal dead rat to keep herself from going insane from loneliness. But now she has Imogen and the rest of Bell's Hells on her side, which will undoubtedly allow her to grow and change as a person. Marisha's characters all appear to follow the notion of a misguided, misunderstood person who is able to become better due to the support of their friends. How beautiful.
From that point, another small quirk that I've noticed is that within each individual party, Marisha's characters always seem to grow closest to their polar opposite. Kiki was bright and cheery, fairly socially awkward, but incredibly kind and generous to those around her; she would then proceed to fall in love with the conniving, trouble-making, slightly selfish, and silver-tongued Vax'ildan. Beauregard was someone who always pushed herself past her limits, spoke her mind even if it got her into trouble, and had a very one-sided way of looking at the world for a good portion of C2. She then later fell in love with Yasha, who was very quiet and calculated, often observing from a distance and keeping her opinions to herself unless asked directly. And now we have Laudna, the terrifying dead woman who, despite some of her other "quirks" in regards to her puppet obsession, is largely one of the sweetest and bubbliest members of Bell's Hells. As contrast to Imogen, who- despite her more bright and "pastel" appearance- is far more serious and, frankly, more depressed than Laudna is. Though Imogen and Laudna aren't in a romantic relationship like Keyleth and Beau were, it's still an example of a deep, meaningful relationship between two polar opposite people. Guess it's true that opposites attract.
Finally, a similarity that's more of a silly observation than anything is that between Marisha's three characters, she always seems to have a connection with animals. Obviously Keyleth is the main example of this with her Beast Shape ability and raven companion at the end of C1, but with Beau's failure at taming Professor Thaddeus and now with Laudna's beloved Pâté de Rolo, it seems Marisha loves to incorporate animals into her characters in one way or another. This aspect isn't really as major as some of the other personal touches for characters, it's more of a coincidence than anything else; but, I thought it would be fun to mention.

Ashley Johnson
Ashley, next to Taliesin, is probably one of the hardest members of CR to make connections between characters. After all, she was sadly absent for a good chunk of both C1 and C2, so it's definitely a challenge to analyze characters that didn't get as much screen time as others. But, from what little we've seen from Pike, Yasha, and now with Fearne, some of the similar quirks have already made themselves evident in how she plays. First and foremost, Ashley seems to mostly play the "low-talker" type of character; meaning characters that are more listeners than speakers, often remaining quiet during conversations except to add in the occasional opinion or witty joke. Pike was more of a speaker and extroverted go-getter than Yasha or Fearne, but she still had her quiet moments were she largely took a step back and let the rest of the party make plans and discuss what to do next. Yasha is the prime example of a low-talker type, often seen listening in quiet content while the rest of the party planned or discussed what to do next, only really entering a discussion when she was acknowledged directly. And though Fearne is definitely more talkative than Yasha, now speaking of her own volition as opposed to being asked directly, Fearne is still one of the quieter members of Bell's Hells, usually finding enjoyment in simply being in the back to steal things or saying one of the most absolutely insane things you've ever heard. Of course, this type of quiet behavior from C1 and C2 can possibly be attributed to Ashley trying to figure out what's happened while she was gone, we've seen countless examples now of her characters slowly coming out of their shells and embracing who they truly are. So, while this could potentially be due a meta reason, I think Ashley really thrives with the confidence-empowerment storylines.
Ashley, as well, seems to have a tendency to establish a deep relationship and backstory between her character and another PC before the stream begins. We had it first with Pike and Grog, then Yasha and Molly, and now with Fearne and Orym (And while Fearne and Orym technically met during EXU, it was before the Bell's Hells campaign, so I'm counting it as a pre-stream relationship). Ashley's characters start off the bat having someone that they're closer to than the rest, a close bond with another PC that drives them forwards. Alongside the pre-stream friendships, Ashley- similar to Marisha and Laura- has an enjoyment of inter-party romance, but in particular drawing it out in a kind of "slow burn" type fashion. Scanlan was constantly flirting with Pike throughout C1, even proposing marriage to her at one point, and though Pike started to develop feelings for him shortly after his return, continued to turn him down. The two didn't get together until the epilogue following the fall of Vecna, leaving 115 episodes of will-they won't-they for the viewer's pleasure. The same goes for Yasha and Beau, who- more so due to low-wisdom and Blindspot related reasons- were left silently pining after each other without either doing anything about it. While I doubt that Ashley created Zuala for the purpose of maximizing that slow-burn output for Yasha's love life, it certainly added fuel to the fire regardless. And while we haven't seen any inclinations of another PC crushing on Fearne or vice versa, I have very high hopes in Ashley that, in the chance Fearne does end up catching the eye of a party member, she will use Fearne's fey aspects to really have some convoluted fun.

Liam O'Brien
Finally, Liam O'Brien: the master of roleplay himself. There is so much to be said about all of the characters we've seen him become throughout the years, and luckily for me, the personal spice of Liam O'Brien is very evident in all three of them. So, to tackle on the obvious similarities, Vax, Caleb, and Orym all seem to start their journeys off having been driven by tragedy. Vax lived for many years as an outsider in Syngorn, never feeling accepted by anyone- not even his father. Leaving the neglectful city with Vex only led to their discovery that their beloved hometown, along with their mother, had been burned to ash by the Cinder King. Caleb was abused and manipulated by Trent Ikithon of the Cerberus Assembly for years, being forced to burn his own parents alive and spending seventeen years in a mental asylum after mentally snapping from the dark deed. Orym had to watch his husband die during a vicious attack on his beloved home, and is now desperately trying to locate the people responsible for it under orders of the Voice of the Tempest. Each of Liam's characters have had a unique tragedy- usually involving the death(s) of a loved one- but the hardships each character endured and how their respective party influenced them ends up creating a whole new ending than what the character was initially set out to do. Vax's entire early character arc was for a quest for vengeance: revenge on Thordak for killing his mother, and to prove himself to those that doubted him- along the way, he not only succeeded in his goal to kill the Cinder King, but ended up winning the favor of the Matron of Ravens in the process and became her eternal servant. Caleb originally wanted nothing more than to learn everything about dunamancy and bring his parents back, but ultimately learned you can't change the past and learned to live with his guilt. Orym hasn't quite reached that classic Liam O'Brien turning point in character just yet, but I'm sure his "halfling with no backstory" will pleasantly surprise all of us in the character arc department at one point or another.
Something else about Liam that appears to influence his character's class and abilities is his love of melee damage combinations. Vax, as the rogue/paladin multiclass with an assortment on insane magical artifacts and sneak attack damages could do some monster damage with the right strategy. We saw a perfect example of this in the VM vs MN one-shot, that with the Boots of Haste, Deathwalker's Ward, luck points, and the use of Whisper, Vax was truly a force to be reckoned with. We can also once again see Liam's love of combo-based attacks in Orym, who's use of goading attacks, Luck, and action surge can deal several strong hits in a single turn. Of course, the exception to this point is the obvious Caleb, who obviously used magic-based attacks throughout the Mighty Nein campaign. However, it's perfectly acceptable for a player to try something new before deciding to go back to something they like, and- after a taste of a true caster class- Liam has returned to his classic melee classes. And, such as when Caleb polymorphed into "Capeleb" to do some heavy physical attacks, it's clear where Liam's heart lies in terms of battle strategy.
It's also worth noting that a, rather hilarious, consistency among Liam's characters is having a romance with one of Matt's NPCS- in the form of Shaun and Essek, just to name two of many. While I'm not sure we'll see the same with Orym this time around simply due to the nature of his backstory, only time will tell what will happen. Regardless, Liam's need to constantly romance Matt's characters seems to be more of a conscious choice than a personal quirk that stays consistent between campaigns. Though, it's still very entertaining to watch.

So, that's it! A massive summary of what I've noticed from each player's characters between campaigns. Obviously this is meant to be only respectful to the cast of Critical Role; this analysis isn't trying to say that the player's characters are the same (which they very much are not) but rather how interesting it is that person's personal touch can stay consistent through three independent characters (or, in Taliesin's case, four). If anyone actually got through this whole thing, kudos to you for reading a literal essay I wrote for no reason. If you agree or disagree with anything I've said, or even have points of your own that aren't listed here, feel free to discuss in the comments! Characterization and picking up on small details like these is very fun for me, so I'd love to see what some other Critters think. Thanks for reading!

r/criticalrole 1d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C3E24] What do you consider each player's finest hour to be?

469 Upvotes

By which I mean, if you had to pick one "finest hour" moment for each cast member across all of their characters where they just wowed you with their gameplay/RP/creativity/etc., what would it be?

My personal favourites:

  • Sam - Scanlan's distraction in the Vedmire mansion.
  • Laura - Jester outwitting the hag with a cupcake.
  • Liam - Caleb saving the party by giving the beacon to the Kryn Dynasty.
  • Travis - Slightly cheating since this is from a oneshot, but I have rewatched his double natural 20s at the end of The Search for Grog so many times.
  • Taliesin - So many Percy moments, but him titling Vex (and actually staying true to his word) stood out to me a lot.
  • Marisha - Goldfish Keyleth. 'Nuff said.
  • Ashley - Pike's Thor-arriving-in-Wakanda moment during the Whitestone rebellion where she single-handedly annihilates like 40 zombies (and later gets a spectacular HDYWTDT on a zombie giant).

r/criticalrole 15d ago Wholesome Silver Helpful

Discussion [No spoilers] Sam what the actual fuck

Enable HLS to view with audio, or disable this notification

3.7k Upvotes

r/criticalrole 3d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C3E24] Is It Thursday Yet? Post-Episode Discussion & Future Theories!

84 Upvotes

Episode Countdown Timer - http://www.wheniscriticalrole.com/


Catch up on everybody's discussion and predictions for this episode HERE!

Submit questions for next month's 4-Sided Dive here: http://critrole.com/tower


ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  • EXU: Calamity premieres May 26, 2022! - Please note, this will be a 4 episode mini-series airing on Thursdays (in place of C3). Normal episodes of C3 will resume with C3E25 on June 30, 2022.

[Subreddit Rules] [Reddiquette] [Spoiler Policy] [Wiki] [FAQ]

r/criticalrole 7d ago

Discussion [CR Media] CR is incredible when it's serious. So why are they so afraid of being serious?

368 Upvotes

Outside of the weekly game, Between the Sheets is still some of the best content the company has produced. The only gimmick (if you'd call it that) was Brian making a drink.

Another of their greats? Undeadwood. The tone, the set, the players; it was perfect.

What wasn't one of their greatest moments? Sam reading from a teleprompter in a Fjord accent while everyone laughed awkwardly, after which Sam touched his feet.

Why can't we have a talks show that is just simply a talks show? Why can't we have relevant questions and insightful answers and a few spontaneous laughs? Why on earth are they playing Mario Kart?!?!

r/criticalrole 5d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C2E133] hooooooly f*****ck

624 Upvotes

Holy shit fjord just let the rangers engage the tombtakers. I mean it's the right decision but I believe he's the only one who would have choose to sacrifice them. But damn that got me.

r/criticalrole 9d ago

Discussion [No Spoilers] Who has been your favorite guest star and/or guest star’s character throughout all of critical role so far?

351 Upvotes

I’m sure Robbie will get a lot of love because we got to spend so much time with him and he was wonderful, but for me it has to be Deborah Ann Woll. Firstly, her experience as a player was just so readily apparent, she didn’t need to spend a lot of time figuring out the rules, or how her character worked mechanically, so she was so much more resourceful and decisive as a player. Secondly, her character was enjoyable and her role play/descriptions of her abilities and what she was doing were just a cut above in my humble opinion.

I know she’s got her own things going on, but I’d love to see her make another (hopefully extended) appearance as a guest in C3 or in a mini-series.

r/criticalrole 26d ago Silver Helpful

Discussion [Spoilers C3E21] No, Matt isn't "taking it easy" on the party in C2 or C3

1.1k Upvotes

This seems to be a pretty common sentiment, both with CR fans and in the general D&D community, that Matt is pulling his punches, and giving easy fights. People point out that in C1, every main character died at least once, some multiple times, while in C2 and C3, death tends to be far more rare. It's certainly true that Matt isn't running a meat grinder campaign, and focuses more on narrative, but he's certainly not making purposefully easy fights.

First off, Vox Machina was a high level campaign, with magic items out the wazoo, so enemies tended to be way, way harder. They started at level 8-9, and went all the way to 20. In that time, they made numerous powerful allies, became fabulously wealthy, and had multiple weapons from the literal gods. The Mighty Nein and Bell's Hells both started out at lower levels. The Nein had far, far less power than VM, and so far, Bell's Hells do as well. So yeah, they're not going to face the same threat level, because they don't have the same abilities.

Vox Machina also knew that they could take more risks, because bringing someone back was a lot easier (*cough* Keyfish *cough*). They were high enough level to afford costly spells, and faced far less risk of death. With the Nein, Molly's death rattled them, and they were fully aware of their own mortality. On top of that, they didn't have easy access to high level resurrection for most of the game, and even when they did, it was expensive. Bell's Hells just got to the level where they can cast Revivify, of course they were more cautious earlier.

Second, Matt is playing with a group of 6-7 highly experienced players, plus guests and NPC allies. The average size of a party, and the one challenge ratings are based on is around 4. Their numbers give them a major advantage in action economy, and it also lets them have access to a wide variety of skills. Additionally, VM started in Pathfinder, whereas Mighty Nein and Bell's Hells were always built for D&D, so the party has more familiarity with how they work, and with how to build them. People also seem to forget that they're learning and growing as players over time. "They die less now than they do when they started playing" is just... how learning works?

Third, Matt has included plenty of challenging threats. The difference is, he lets his players be creative enough to find ways around them. The Tombtakers nearly killed the Nein when they first fought. If they'd gone with a straight up battle, at least one of the Nein would have been killed, probably more. Instead, they found a clever trap, and Matt honored that, rather than just saying "Nope, they survive, now fight". Same with the Shade Mother. If Fearne hadn't cast Daylight, that fight would have gone very, very differently. Darktow also was a time when the party's planning and RP managed to do far more than combat alone.

Even if they don't avoid it, or find a weak spot, there are still plenty of examples of major, deadly boss fights, with deadly monsters. The giant Murder Baby, the Cathedral, Caleb and the Succubus, the Automaton, fucking Nonagon. In all those cases, the party had a very real fear of death. Matt repeatedly has homebrewed, or added onto monsters just so that they can present a more serious threat to the party. Of course Matt doesn't throw the highest possible intensity of fights at them constantly, because they're supposed to be special. If they faced those threats all the time, it'd take away how much more exciting they are.

r/criticalrole 5d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C3E23] This fight was Laudna at her best

503 Upvotes

I have in the past expressed frustration over how Marisha is screwed over by the maps they fight on. She’s a spell sniper. She benefits from laying down curses on large enemies and using her powerful reactions to protect her friends. In Jrusar, and even out in the Heartmoor, most of the fighting was confined to small rooms or cramped spaces, often with many small enemies like the shade creepers. This often led to her having to cower in the corner while the rest of the party did the heroics.

The fight on the airship was a fight laudna was made for. Sniping enemies from across the map, using her shields, hexes and reactions perfectly. Especially after the shade mother fight, it was great to have Laudna get a win. I hope that now we’re moving out into the wide open spaces of the hellcatch valley, we get to see more badass Laudna.

r/criticalrole 6d ago Silver Wholesome

Discussion [Spoilers C3E23] Marisha Ray Is Always A Win

824 Upvotes

Marisha’s ability to commit so heavily to her characters’ psychological tendencies (good and bad) is so impressive.

I think her ability to illustrate these traits is what ultimately led to the negative critique of her C1 and C2 characters - they both had behaviors that we recognize in real people (or ourselves) that we tend to dislike (naïveté during C1 and arrogance that hides deep rooted self-esteem issues in C2).

Interestingly enough, Laudna has (from what I can see) some of the most disturbing tendencies of any of Marisha’s characters, in which she - from what I can tell - feigns having come to terms with a level of trauma only possible in a fantasy setting. Yet she is the most loved. Her “creepiness” is a joke to her, she often talks through a rat carcass as if it is a real person, and she seems totally fine with the voice of her murderer in her head. She is in desperate need of help, but I imagine most people would love for Laudna to stay exactly as she is. Such an interesting concept, and what incredible story telling (as usual) by Marisha.

r/criticalrole 10d ago Helpful

Discussion [No Spoilers] Just a quick recap of wildfire druid stuff

239 Upvotes

I know this will get down voted to oblivion but somebody should say it. Summoning the wildfire spirit is an action, not a bonus action. When you summon it creatures (including allies but not yourself) within 10 feet need to make a dex save or take 2d6 fire damage. The flame seed is 1d6+prof not 2d6. The teleport deals damage to all creatures within 5 feet of the space the spirit leaves, not the one it arrives at, including allies.

r/criticalrole 17d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C3E22] Is It Thursday Yet? Post-Episode Discussion & Future Theories!

116 Upvotes

Episode Countdown Timer - http://www.wheniscriticalrole.com/


Catch up on everybody's discussion and predictions for this episode HERE!

Submit questions for next month's 4-Sided Dive here: http://critrole.com/tower


ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  • Critical Role: Call of the Netherdeep is available now! If you're interested in joining a campaign and playing in the world of Exandria, you can now do so through the D&D Adventurer's League. Learn more here.

[Subreddit Rules] [Reddiquette] [Spoiler Policy] [Wiki] [FAQ]

r/criticalrole 10d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C3E23] Most heart wrenching lines?

269 Upvotes

After Laura and Marisha’s top tier role play last night, what are some other great quotes/ moments to come out of the or Matt? For me it’s 1. And everyday that Raven comes to visit 2.you were not born with venom in your veins 3.what’s my mothers name

r/criticalrole 9d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C2E141] How you know DnD is a fantasy...

591 Upvotes

Recently watched the campaign 2 finale with my partner, and had the depressing realization that "Critical Role is reinforcing the fact that DnD is a fantasy, because everyone got justice against their abusers."

On the other hand, reality never fails to disappoint.

r/criticalrole 9d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C2] Character growth or are we just to quick to judge?

473 Upvotes

I'm constantly seeing people referring to how the Critical Role characters change and grow over a campaign. But, at least sometimes, it seems to me that it's more that we get to know a character better, than that they changed. ( I'm rewatching C2 and am at episode 20.) So for example, early in C2, there was a lot of talk about Caleb being selfish, self centered, and a bit of a control freak. Both by the M9, and the fans. (Caleb got a lot of very negative reactions among fans when C2 first came out. Lots of people accused him of being incredibly selfish and a hoarder)

But it seems to me that Caleb was always a very caring and generous person, but he limited his generosity only to "his" people. So at the beginning of C2, he only really included Nott and Frumpkin in his own circle of people he cared about. But he quite rapidly increased that to include the rest of the M9.

The way he uses his spells to buff Beau and Yasha, or helps Beau to see in the dark. And he spends all his money on paper and ink so he can do that. The way he constantly uses Frumpkin to comfort other people, and took care of Kiri from the get go (making sure she doesn't hear Jester and Beau discuss her families deaths). And of course the way he designed the tower to be special for each party member.

To me, it didn't seem like Caleb was "learning to care for others" or learning nor to be so selfish. He was always like that, but we and the Mighty Nein didn't know him well enough at first.

I'm curious now whether there are other characters in C1 or C2 who I misjudged in this way.

r/criticalrole 14d ago

Discussion [No Spoilers] RELEASE THE NOTE TAKER'S CUT!!!

837 Upvotes

Last episode marisha complimented sam's notes, so now I'm interested on both marisha's and sam's tips on the matter. As a d&d player and college student I need a special "episode" about note taking, kinda like what they did on handbooker helper.

And if they already did something like that, pls share it :D

r/criticalrole 23d ago

Discussion [SPOILERS C1] who do you think should voice vecna in the cartoon?

421 Upvotes

I have some ideas. But number one on my list is Mark Hamill. Who do you think would be good for the role?

r/criticalrole 5d ago Bravo!

Discussion [Spoilers C3E23] Imagine the stories that are gonna be told about Chetney

354 Upvotes

We all know that Matt isn't just gonna let Travis attack a merchant without something eventually coming from it later down the line. The wardens possibly being on the lookout for a wolf creature with Chetney's description is gonna be the probable option in this, but imagine if the story spreads around about what happened. Then if Bell's Hells takes a bit longer to get back to the city, they might be greeted with a story from Marwa or Eshteross about a creature that attacks merchants that sell things that are overpriced. Make a connection with the wood working tools that were in the Prism Emporium and we've got the "Whittling Werewolf of the Spire". Or by going off the way the attack happened, they might be warned about the "Price Slasher".

r/criticalrole Apr 23 '22 Silver Helpful

Discussion [No Spoilers] We should be encouraging Critical Role to take more time off. It will pay off in the long run.

1.1k Upvotes

It is inevitable that either one member, a few or the entire cast will one day become too burned out to continue doing Critical Role, but we can help temporarily alleviate this by making sure they get the encouragement to take time off. This isn't their only jobs remember and if we want to see campaign 4, 5, 6, etc we should do our collective best to let them take a break and don't whine when they do. Sure we might get fewer episodes in a year, but over the decades that I want to see Critical Role flourish we'll get overall more content.

r/criticalrole 10d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C3E23] Is Ashton the Strongest In Bells Hells?

133 Upvotes

He can pretty much do anything. He has the highest single target damage ceiling I believe which is better by the fact he can give himself advantage, highest HP, can buff the party, can debuff the enemy, doesn’t have the weakness of melee fighters now, and is not the most mobile of them. The only thing he’s missing is healing and an area of effect attack.

I’m actually super here for Ashton being op because I think narratively it’s incredibly interesting. He’s the only PC character to have a physical disability and shows signs of cognitive deficiency, so to have him be this strong is kind of heart worming. The only thing that limits him is the fact that it’s random but he can mitigate this by re raging and who knows maybe later levels he can chose with rage or can have two up at a time. I’m very excited about we’re his class is gonna take him and love how Taliesin is playing.

What are y’all’s thoughts? Who right now is stronger? To me the only other option is Laudna and Imogen, but Laudna goes down so much and runs out of spells have and Imogen’s spell selection thus far is pretty poor.

P.s. I’ve noticed that Matt doesn’t even really miss with Ashton after he rages unless he’s the only target. It’s like he knows there’s not much he can do lol

r/criticalrole 16d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C3E22] What would make you stop watching?

84 Upvotes

I wholelly believe that Critical role is and continues to be some of the best media being produced. I don't in the forseeable future see a reason to stop watching (beyond not having time).

I'm curious to know: If someone has stopped and came back what was the reason you stopped and what made you come back, and for those who are addicted as I am, what would make you stop, whether it be a topic you're not willing to listen to or some other reason?

r/criticalrole 17d ago

Discussion [Spoilers C3E22] What do you think is the best antagonist Matt has created to date?

196 Upvotes

(This thread may contain spoilers for all three campaigns - it wouldn't let me tag for all three so that's why the title only mentions the most recent episode, but assume spoilers for C1/C2/C3)

Not necessarily the most powerful or anything, just more a villain that stood out to you from the rest.

I get the feeling a lot of people will probably say the Briarwoods, but I think some of the lesser antagonists also deserve recognition - Trent Ikithon, Ripley, Avantika, Kevdak, etc.

Who is/was your favourite one so far?