Every hardcore gamer knows that every role-playing game’s humble beginnings start with the classic play of Dungeons & Dragons. Role-playing games are essentially the birth child of this incredible game. Moreover, every D&D fan is also aware of Critical Role’s famous streaming campaign show. More good news for fans, as Amazon’s Prime Video has acquired the highly anticipated animated series “The Legend of Vox Machina” on their platform.
The team behind Vox Machina is Critical Role. The team consists of professional voice actors who have been known to play numerous Dungeons & Dragons campaigns since 2014. The troupe mainly streams their gameplay through Twitch and has been the most popular “actual play” experience of playing D&D during real-time.
The animated show’s first season draws from the events during Critical Role’s first campaign of D&D, which makes a perfect plot for fans, new and old, who have been curious or would just love to have a replay of the fun-filled, never-before-seen adventure. We’ve listed down a few things that new fans are bound to get excited about watching Vox Machina.
Where is the Series Set?
The series is set during Critical Role’s first Dungeons & Dragons campaign. The adventure takes place in Exandria, specifically in Tal’Dorei, where it is home to powerful gods, terrifying monsters, and challenging puzzles.
The Legend of Vox Machina is focused on a group of adventurers called Vox Machina, where they meet in the city of Emon. Emon is an industrial hub with all sorts of technological innovations. Skyships powered by magic and advanced technology allow overseas travel to other Exandrian continents.
D&D veterans may feel a sense of familiarity with the elements that surround the plot of Exandria, especially dungeon masters who have hosted campaigns set in the Forgotten Realms. If you’re feeling a bit bombarded, no need to worry. It’s totally okay for newcomers to experience confusion at the start. Thankfully, the communities formed by Dungeons & Dragons are built to help ease in newcomers to this exciting, lore-filled game.
In fact, Critical Role’s very own DM, Matthew Mercer, prepared a detailed historical guide about Exandria’s origin on Critical Role’s Youtube channel. You can check out the channel to help you know more about the lore involved in this wonderful tale of adventures and mysteries.
Who Are Its Characters?
The heart and soul of Critical Role begin with its characters and the bonds they have made along the way. Critical Core consists of seven professional, famous voice actors who are more than just talented vocal artists. Since they have a deep understanding of the game and their roles, they live up to their game and show us a wonderful performance in terms of their character’s fit for the game.
Each character has a different race, affliction, and moral compass, which makes how the team strategically works together despite their differences fun and intriguing. Here are some of the members of Vox Machina:
Hailing from the faraway, peaceful, farming town of Byroden, Vex is a half-elf ranger/rogue and a key member of Vox Machina. Together with her twin brother Vax’ildan or Vax, they were raised by their mother Elaina. After a fateful twist of events, the twins are taken to Syngorn by orders from their very own father, Syldor Vessar.
Vex wields an incredibly powerful bow named Fenthras. She gains the blessing of Pelor, becoming its champion to face Vecna. Along their travels, Vex befriends a bear cub and names him Trinket. Vex is played by Laura Bailey.
Vax is the twin brother of Vex. He is a half-elf rogue/paladin/druid and a valuable member of Vox Machina. After feeling unhappy from leaving Byroden, Vax and her sister left to see the world on their own.
Vax gains possession of Deathwalker’s Ward, a legendary set of studded leather armor once owned by a champion of the Raven Queen. He also wields Whisper, a legendary ceremonial dagger made from metal gathered from the Far Realm. After offering his life to save his sister, he dies and is eventually brought back by the Raven Queen to become her champion. Vax is played by Liam O’Brien.
Raised in the city of Westruun, Pike is a gnome cleric of Sarenrae. She joins Vox Machina in search of her friend Grog, who goes missing after venturing towards Gatshadow Mountain. During a fight, Pike is cut in half and dies. However, she is resurrected now with her hair turning white.
Pike acquires the Plate of Dawnmartyr, a legendary set of armor that provides its user with several resistances and immunities. The armor also damages melee attackers and provides a healing aura if the user is knocked unconscious. Pike is voiced by Ashley Johnson.
Grog is a goliath barbarian/fighter who was exiled by his own uncle, Kevdak from Herd of the Storms. Wilhand Trickfoot takes in Grog who becomes friends with his great, great, granddaughter, Pike Trickfoot.
During his journey with Vox Machina, Grog comes to possess the Titanstone Knuckles. Grog defeats his uncle to own these pair of legendary weapons. The Titanstone Knuckles are made from corpses of its owners. It provides the wielder immense strength and deals double damage to buildings and other objects. Grog is played by Travis Willingham.
As a member of the Air Ashari Tribe, Keyleth is a half-elf druid who goes on Aramenté. Aramenté is a journey a member of the Ashari tribe undertakes. Keyleth can shapeshift into many kinds of creatures for different purposes such as transportation, stealth, and scouting.
Keyleth eventually wields the Spire of Conflux, a staff made by Melora’s breath. The staff allows its user to cast powerful spells such as Ice Storm, Conjure Elemental, Chain Lightning, and Fire Storm. Aside from the spells it possesses, the staff provides its user with bonuses stats. Marisha Ray voices Keyleth.
Percival de Rolo/Percy – A human gunslinger who’s family once ruled the city of Whitestone. When he was young, his family was othertrown and murdered by the Briarwoods. Percy fled, his hair turning white from the traume. He wandered aimlessly for several years before making plans to enact his revenge. During his travels with Vox Machina, acquires Cabal’s Ruin, a magical cape that can absorb magic. He is voiced by Taliesin Jaffe.
Scanlan Shorthalt – A musically talented and promiscuous gnome bard who gets to wield a legendary sword, the Mythcarver scales and responds to music. Scanlan is played by Sam Riegel.
Taryon Darrington (Former member) – A human artificer and founder of the Darrington Brigade. Sam Riegel also voices Taryon.
Tiberius Stormwind (Deceased) – A dragonborn sorcerer who was a key member of Vox Machina. He sets up his own Teleportation Circle in order for the group to travel great distances easily. His body is frozen and found by Percy. Further inspection sees that Tiberius is forever locked in time in a dream. Vox Machina formerly gives a burial service to their ally. Tiberius Stormwind is voiced by Orion Acaba.
Updates on Season 2
There have been no announcements for the exact release date for the animated roleplaying game’s second season, but it has been confirmed that the show is indeed getting a follow-up season. As for production, the rise of the COVID19 pandemic has put a hold on the original release date of Vox Machina, from 2020 to 2022.
It has been predicted by numerous fans waiting for the new season that its release could be around late 2022 or early 2023. While waiting, fans and newcomers of Critical Role can always binge on the old gameplays of the team on their Youtube channel or podcast on Spotify.
Veterans and newcomers of D&D are sure to have heard of Critical Role, and if not—then it’s high time you do! The troupe of professional voice actors led by Matthew Mercer has produced an animated series of their campaigns with “The Legend of Vox Machina,” and Amazon Prime Video. While waiting for season two, fans can continue bingeing to old campaigns on Critical Role’s Spotify and Youtube channel.