Entertainment

Critical Role return date & new format officially announced

by Theo Salaun
Critical Role

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The world’s most popular Dungeons & Dragons series, Critical Role, is finally set to resume with some modifications after a hiatus.

Acted by a variety of proudly nerdy voice actors and helmed by Dungeon Master Matthew Mercer, the last episode of Critical Role’s second campaign, episode 99: High Stakes, High Seas, aired on March 16, 2020. Now, it’s officially coming back—with numerous safety precautions.

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As explained by Creative Director Marisha Ray in an update video, Critical Role will be returning for the 100th episode of its second campaign on July 2nd. With advice from the CDC, WHO, and various entertainment unions, the production team has created a new “social distancing set” that ensures maximum safety of the cast and crew. 

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The new set will feature everything from individual tables for cast members, split seven to even 21 feet apart, a skeleton crew, and weekly to bi-weekly testing for all on-hand personnel depending on recording schedule. In addition, Critical Role will now be pre-taping their content and monitoring conditions with the possibility that they put production on hold again if things are deemed unsatisfactory or should local governance mandates change.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KmLNSQwQQXQ

After months of down time, fans of the popular series will be thrilled to hear that their favorite gang, the Mighty Nein, is heading back to sea—where their ship was last seen being trailed by a...dragon turtle.

Critical Role blends entertainment with the fantasy adventure of the Dungeons & Dragons tabletop role-playing game. While the game has existed since 1974, the series has been around since 2015, existing across podcast platforms, YouTube, and live-streamed on Twitch before getting turned into a variety of accompanying media like books and comics.

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The series has also played a strong role in charity fundraising. While offering a ton of merchandise to their eager fans, including customized flasks and a collection with Hot Topic, the show’s cast is constantly involved in social work—both using their platforms for advocacy and funneling all show donations toward charities.

It’s an obvious cultural sensation, not just for its entertainment value but for the warmth of its community. The cast doesn’t just care about killing bad guys in a fantasy world, they care about their fans and helping out in the real world too.

The 100th episode will air on Thursday, July 2nd. The team is excited, the fans are excited, but Ray summed it up best: “This game is such a huge part of our hearts and souls … We’ve missed you, we love you, and...is it Thursday yet?”

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