It’s official: The Legend of Vox Machina is coming to the small screen.
After the incredibly successful 2019 Kickstarter campaign pledged $11 million for an animated series based on Campaign 1 of the Dungeons & Dragons web series Critical Role, a 24-episode show is due out for Amazon Prime Video in 2022.
Hosted by a range of respected American voice actors, and with a thriving international fan base, Critical Role may be the most famous example of ‘real drama’ D&D, where a group of friends get together and roll their dice. -The rolling table streams the thrill. (You can check out our Best D&D Podcasts and Web Series guides for some more introductions.)
Whether you’re new to the world of Critical Role, or a seasoned fan looking forward to a new way to experience its lore, the imminent arrival of The Legend of Vox Machina brings some well-deserved little additions to this beloved universe. Should provide screen display.
Below, we’ll walk you through the show’s story, voice cast, streaming access, and more, as well as the possibility of a follow-up series based on Critical Role’s second and third campaigns.
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The Legend of Vox Machina release date
The Legend of Vox Machina is coming to Prime Video on January 28, 2022.
Like the film and TV industry throughout 2020, the show ran into production troubles in light of the ongoing pandemic. It was initially slated to begin dropping episodes in “Fall 2020” (September–December), although its release date was revised to 2022.
According to Amazon, the first season will consist of 12 episodes to be released over four weeks, with three episodes premiering each week. The already green-lighted second season is expected to arrive later in the year.
The Legend of Vox Machina: Where can you watch it?
The Legend of Vox Machina will stream exclusively on Amazon Prime Video, following the move to the streaming service for an additional 14 episodes on top of 10 episodes funded through Kickstarter.
Backers will still get the entire first season as part of their pledge, and early access to the first two episodes of the season, though the exact details and timing of this are unclear.
We are also told that “the series will be dubbed, subtitled, and otherwise localized for our much larger global audience”.
Legend of Vox Machina Story and Characters
For those of you looking forward to a re-read of Expedition 1, this will not happen at all.
The Kickstarter for the show reveals that the animated series will cover a “brand new story” and “in-canon adventure”, created by the cast and written by screenwriter Jennifer Murrow, who has also written other animated characters such as Star Wars. Having worked on the series: Forces of Destiny, Spider-Man, and Justice League: Action.
The first two episodes will serve as a prequel adventure, with the original members of Vox Machina at level 7 prior to the streamed episode – which begins with the party’s arrival in the dwarven town of Craghammer.
However, successful stretch goals will mean that the Briarwoods arc will also get its own batch of animated episodes from the streamed campaign.
The Legend of Vox Machina Trailers
You can get a sense of the show’s art style, humor and scope in its latest trailer, which we’ve covered below.
Prior to the release of the above trailer, however, we were treated to an animated introduction to the series, which features party members of Vox Machina: Kyleth the Druid, Percy the Gunslinger, Grog the Barbarian, Pike the Cleric, Scanlan the Druid, and Percy the Gunslinger. The Bard, Wax the Ranger, and Wax the Rogue.
The soundtrack here is the same one used for the introduction of the current actual play episode, which we expect will be used in some form for the final animated series.
In mid-2020, the Critical Role team also released a behind-the-scenes video of the ongoing animation work at Titmouse, including artist interviews and examples of the show’s environmental art.
The Legend of Vox Machina: Who’s Involved?
Naturally, the original cast for Campaign 1: Vox Machina will reprise their roles for the animated series.
It helps that the entire cast is quite experienced voice actors in their own right: Laura Bailey voices both Cat from Gears 5 and Abby from The Last of Us Part 2, Ashley Johnson voices Allie in The Last of Us games , Matt Mercer voiced Levi in the English dub of Attack on Titan and McCree in the PvP game Overwatch, and Sam Rigel voiced Phoenix Wright in the Ace Attorney games, but few had a huge list of cast credits.
No word yet on guest appearances, with critical roles often featuring players outside for one-sided games or short plot arcs, with both Wil Wheaton and Joe Manganiello appearing in Campaign 1. We would expect the guests to reprise their roles where relevant, however.
The Kickstarter page states that, “To round out the main cast, we’ll be voicing some additional special celebrity cameos, as well as industry stalwarts.”
At the heart of it all is the animation studio Titmouse, an American organization that produces many animated programming, including shows from Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, Disney XD, Fox, and Hulu. Some of the studio’s most notable output has been for Netflix, as with the Netflix shows Big Mouth (starring John Mulaney) and The Midnight Gospel.
Artists working on The Legend of Vox Machina will notably be “led by art director Arthur Loftis and supervising director Sung Jin Ah”.
Critical Role has announced that “the vast majority of our resources” (about 74%) will go “to the animation budget”.
The Mighty Nine Animated Series: Could It Be?
For now, the Critical Role team has taken on the animated series of its first campaign, Vox Machina, but the popularity of the later seasons could pave the way for Critical Role’s other campaigns and more spin-off shows based on the story. .
Campaign 2: The Mighty Nine ended in June 2021, while Campaign 3 debuted in October of the same year, so there’s no shortage of D&D adventures to translate to the small screen.
It’s possible we won’t hear anything about the Mighty Nein animated series for a while, but the overwhelming interest in Kickstarter for Vox Machina suggests that animated adaptations of the critical role’s ongoing hijinks have a lot to offer.
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