Critical Role: 2020 “turned everything on its head” for the D&D phenomenon

Critical Role: 2020
Critical Role: 2020 "turned everything on its head" for the D&D phenomenon

The epic role-playing game Dungeons and Dragons were originally designed by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson in 1974 has winned the test of time and has stayed relevant for all these years without any major changes in the game itself. The game has been around for almost five decades now and has shaped the course of many lives. 

And no one’s life has it affected more drastically than the life of a group of voice actors, Willingham, O’Brien, Marisha Ray, Laura Bailey, Ashley Johnson, Sam Riegel, Taliesin Jaffe, and their Dungeon Master, Matthew Mercer, who decided to stream a D&D game they were playing on Twitch five years ago.

How did the Critical Role start?

Since their debut, the crew went on to amass a small fandom for itself. Once they got a reasonable following, they decided to meet the fans and arranged a panel at the New York Comic-Con.

They expected only a few people to show up so set up a small stage. But when they found that there was a line around the block waiting for them, they realized that D&D would soon take up most of their being.

Over the years, they acquired a huge fandom, who called themselves “Critters”. Their YouTube channel has over a million subscribers and their page has over 440K followers.

What happened this year?

“2020 is a bit of a chrysalis for us,” O’Brien told Inverse. “We went inside of it, disappeared, and now we’re working on stuff we’re excited about. As far as this hell year, the most important thing was to see each other around the table.”

The group was supposed to air the 100th episode of their campaign this march and it was a big milestone for both them and the Critters. But they were unable to do so due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

They could have zoomed the whole episode but they claimed that it would not have been very justifiable since that particular episode was special to everyone involved. So they waited until they could meet each other in real life.

“It was insanely hard to wait, but it was definitely worth it,” Willingham stated. “There’s an intangible difference being there in person and being online. I’m glad we did.”

The video was finally uploaded on the 7th of July, 2020 and it went on to get over a million views. You can watch the video here-

And they told us that this marked the end of one phase of their lives and they were ready to move on to the next level. They excitedly shared that they have planned a lot of new projects for their fans and are releasing some new books as well.

So stay tuned with us for the latest updates!



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