Critical Role is an American web series produced by Geek & Sundry in which a group of professional voice actors play Dungeons & Dragons. The series is broadcast live on Thursdays on the Geek & Sundry Twitch.tv, with episodes later made available on Geek & Sundry's official website and YouTube channel.
Each week, nearly half a million viewers tune into watch the Vox Machina play led by veteran voice actor and game master Matthew Mercer. The cast includes Travis Willingham, Marisha Ray, Taliesin Jaffe, Ashley Johnson (Blindspot), Sam Riegel, Liam O'Brien, and Laura Bailey. Additionally, the show has attracted quite a few celebrities who have joined the cast as special guests, including Chris Hardwick, Felicia Day, Wil Wheaton, and Phil Lamarr.
On July 22nd at San Diego Comic-Con, a comic book that tells the tales of the beginning of Vox Machina pre-stream and pre-game was announced. That it would be written by Matthew Colville, drawn by Olivia Samson (a long-time member of the Critical Role community) and colored and lettered by Chris Northrop.
And it has been digitally published today, with cover art by Deborah Hauber, on Dark Horse Digital, iBooks, ComiXology, Amazon (Kindle), Barnes & Noble (Nook), Google Play, and other digital platforms for $3.99. Each issue will feature cover art from a different artist within the Critical Role community.
Dark Horse already created a number of motion comics in 2012 when the channel first launched on YouTube.
Colville said of the project:
"We saw the comic as a chance to show folks what happened in Matt's home game, but I suggested rewinding the clock back even further — let's tell the story of how Vox Machina met. The first few issues show our heroes working alone, or as members of other adventuring groups, and not quite fitting in. As they meet each other, they slowly realize they'd all be better off working together. As is their destiny!"