REVIEW: ‘Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet,’ – Non-Playable Characters

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Main promotion picture for mythic quest

Boot up your PC and grab your shovel because Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet is coming to give viewers a comedy that we haven’t quite seen before. At PAX South 2020, Apple+ gave fans present in San Antonio a chance to view the shows pilot. Following the screening, three of the shows stars, Rob McElhenney (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia ), Charlotee Nicdao (The Strange Chores, Content), and Ashly Burch (Critical Role,  Attack on Titan) stuck around for a Q&A (featured at the bottom of this article).

First announced at E3 2019 by star and co-creator McElhenney, Mythic Quest is a comedy set in video game studio. He is joined by his longtime co-star Charlie Day who both worked on the hit comedy It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia to create a different take on the workplace comedy. Couple the duos proven track record with comedy and a diverse cast of very funny people, and the series looks to be one of the funniest of 2020.

Mythic Quest is focused on a gaming studio that is putting out the world’s most popular massively multiplayer online role playing game, of the same name, that is on the verge of releasing their first expansion, Raven’s Banquet. While the vanilla version of the game had over 11 million players, the studio is hoping for the expansion to shatter all expectations. Behind the scenes, creative director Ian Grimm (pronounced eye-an), played by McElhenney, is looking for more than just a successful game launch. He is looking for something to cement his legacy.

Creative Director of Mythic Quest: Raven's Quest Ian (Rob McElhenney)

Episode one, “Non-Playable Characters,” takes place just days before the launch of Raven’s Banquet. Despite the game being perfect according to Mythic Quest’s lead programmer Poppy, played by Nicdao. However, Ian is not fond of the addition of a shovel that allows players to change the terrain in the game. He wants the shovel altered to fit his own vision which comes at much to the chagrin of Poppy. Ian wants the game to be delayed to account for his changes which leads to a split in the studio. The rest of the episode follows the rift between Ian and Poppy as the two try to persuade other members of the studio to side with them.

The studio is filled with a diverse cast that lend to the balance of the ensemble and shows the different roles in a gaming studio. Another Always in Sunny in Philadelphia alum, David Hornsby, joins the cast the studio’s less than assertive producer, while the primary writer for the Mythic Quest is played by Academy Award winning F. Murray Abraham (Amadeus).  Danny Pudi (Community) plays a largely disinterested head of community outreach. Even quality assurance testers get there due with Burch and Imani Hakim (The Gabby Douglas Story) who look to give their own input on the game’s development.

Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet is hilarious. The jokes are well timed and easy to understand even if you aren’t versed in the gaming industry. Despite the cast size and length of the episode, each of the cast members gets their time to shine to better understand their placement in Mythic Quest.  After the first episode, I immediately was ready for the next one.

The 150 viewers in attendance must have felt the same way, since they laughed throughout and cheered loudly when credits rolled. Luckily, fans of the show will get the chance as all nine episodes will stream on Apple TV+ on February 7th.  With episodes at a maximum of 38 minutes long, the show will definitely be bingeable. Further, the show has already been renewed for a second season speaking to Apple TV+’s confidence in the success of the show.

If you are worried if Mythic Quest will not take the gaming industry, don’t be. McElhenney expressed in the Q&A that he visited gaming studios, primarily Ubisoft, to better understand the dynamics of gaming studios. Burch is well versed in the industry as she worked on a variety of games including Life is StrangeHero Zero Dawn, and The Outer Worlds. The commitment to authenticity even extends to the game shown in Mythic Quest. By building their own sandbox, they are able to show quality animations of game mechanics. Further, fans will see light Easter eggs with shots of For Honor, Red Dead Redemption 2, Assassins Creed, and other games sprinkled throughout as well.

Be ready to enter the world of Mythic Quest on February 7th on Apple TV+. If you want to hear more from the Q&A after the screening, check out the event in its entirety below.