REVIEW: Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II,’ Issue #3 (of 6)

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Published by Dark Horse Comics, Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II #3 follows the members of Vox Machina before the Critical Role dungeons and dragons group began their successful weekly streamed campaign. The primary story is from the mind of Matthew Mercer, while characters and their development are from the players themselves. Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II #3 is written by Jody Houser, features art from Oliva Samson, colors by Msassyk, letters by Ariana Maher while Fiona Staples provides the cover art.

Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II #2 closed with the members of Vox Machina helping their goilath companion Grog bury his father. The barbarian had left suddenly in the middle of the night after being called on by a spectral vision of his father. With a little directional help from Wilhand Trickfoot, the adventures set out to the aptly named Cursed Mountain. There they found a dark skeletal entity performing some kind of ritual on Grog. After a battle with the shade, skeletons, and a possessed Grog, the heroes emerged triumphant. Grog, now free from the darkness’s grasp, escaped the conflict with nothing more than a scratch across his chest. Or so it would seem.

Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II #3 finds Vox Machina back in the inn in Westruun. Despite saving Grog and added Pike Tricklefoot to their band, the mood is dire. The injury that Grog in his time at the Cursed Mountain has not healed. Even Pike, with all of her divine cleric healing, cannot fully heal the wound. Grog believes that is nothing, but that does not stop the group from seeking a second opinion on the matter. After a quick conversation with Noja. the owner Beyond the Veil, the group finds out that Grog is not rid of nightmare situation just yet. The scar is cursed.

After failed attempts to gain more information about the curse from reoccurring NPCs from Critical Role campaign 1 Lady Kima and Realmseer Eskil Ryndarien, the group returned to the Westruun inn defeated. When Grog’s faint seems all but written, Vox Machina is approached by an elf named Drez Vina. He offers the desperate band a chance to gain entrance into the Greystone Tower where Realmseer Eskil Ryndarien resides. They were previously turned away and told to come back in several weeks for an appointment; weeks that Grog does not have. Against their better judgement, the adventures agree to Drez Vina’s terms.

Drez Vina’s request is very straightforward. Access the Greystone Tower through a secret entrance using a red gem. Sneak up to Realmseer Eskil Ryndarien study and bring their terms directly to him. Hope he is not upset with their intrusion. Finally, steal a box for Vina’s employer on the way out as repayment for his help. All seemingly simple for the group who just defeated an evil shade. However, Vina does make it know that the Realmseer is very powerful and Vox Machina would stand no chance in a fight. Now, the group must carry out this plan while avoiding all manner of traps and possible detection in the Greystone Tower.

The rest of the issue follows Vox Machina attempting to traverse the tower without being noticed. Realmseer Eskil Ryndarien is one of the most powerful arcane users in Tal’Dorei and stand still little chance if they are seen as unwelcome guests. The second half of the story is where Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II #3 really shines. As Vox Machina runs into obstacles, they do not overcome them easily. In very much dungeons and dragons fashion, the group finds creative ways to maneuver through even if their first idea does not work. It furthers the immersion of this having a connection to the famed campaign by which the series is based.

Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II is half through its six issue run and the pace has certainly picked up. Readers are gaining more insight into Vox Machina’s origins and they are becoming more of a family with each issue. Further, readers will also begin to see the groups transition away from just a band of hired hands to their chaotic/neutral good nature. With the story getting deeper and the temptations for gold growing greater, they are having to decide what they deem important. With more members to join later and they way that Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II #3 ends, I am excited to see what the last half of the series has to offer.

Is it Wednesday yet?

Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II #3 is available now.

Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II
5

TL;DR

Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins II is half through its six issue run and the pace has certainly picked up. Readers are gaining more insight into Vox Machina’s origins and they are becoming more of a family with each issue