Episode 73: Uthodurn
Critical Role broadcast live from Gen Con for this episode! And what an episode it was. From start to finish, this session was an absolute rollercoaster ride. There’s so much to discuss this week, so let’s dive right in.
I think that the opening act and intro deserve their very own mention. The cast, and Brian W. Foster, are known for going all out for live show costumes, and Gen Con 2019 did not disappoint. From the second they dragged Foster onto the stage in a body bag and full Blindspot cosplay, it was clear they were in deep. Then the cast unleashed full sexy goth themed outfits culminating in the… glorious? Wonder that was Sam Riegel. The crowd was an absolute wall of noise and excitement, as usual, and even joined in a spontaneous sing along to the Critical Role theme song. It’s amazing how far our beloved nerdy ass voice actors have come since the first days of streaming on Twitch.
Now that the scene is set, let’s get to the wild story that took place this session. We were all eager to see how Fjord would handle his new, less than ideal, powerlessness. The situation was only made more humorous by the fact that the cast could not help but poke fun every single chance they got. It was hilarious. It was painful. It was DnD at its finest. The Nein finally set off towards Uthodurn, expecting a hard, but not particularly perilous journey (mistake #1).
The expedition started off all light-hearted and joking about poor, weak and vulnerable Fjord. The biggest concern was maybe some direwolves, or some more spooky specters. But no, Mercer had to roll the insane Remorhaz, centipede worm of death and horror encounter. The Nein have faced some serious encounters before, and even lost a member to permadeath. I haven’t been so nervous through a fight in quite a while…and we just experienced the catacombs of your worst nightmares! The first attack, from the baby worm no less, nearly took Jester out in one hit. And it only went downhill from there.
The Nein faced off against a baby and a mama Remorhaz in a fight that was filled with horrible, terrifying, near death moments. Fjord nearly gets both arms literallytorn off. Beau and Caduceus were both on death’s door, with Jester not far behind. There was Jester as a killer mammoth in there for a minute! It was wild. I thought Beau was a goner for sure after the mama Remorhaz ate her and then disappeared down a burrow hole. Worst moment of the night. Thankfully Fjord was having a rock star night and was able to wrangle the giant ice centipede back to the surface long enough for the rest of the team to blow its head off and drag her unconscious body out of its throat.
After the craziness settled down, the Nein found a safe place to rest for the night and made it through with no problems. The last half of the journey to Uthodurn went mostly uneventfully. Oh yeah, except for the moment when Nott shot Beau with a gun. Yeah, there was that. Gotta love it when a friendly tree climbing race turns violently competitive. Besides the friendly fire, the Nein arrive in Uthodurn safely and start to search for their mystery blacksmith.
We get a wonderfully rich description of the city of Uthodurn and some interesting world building history lessons about dwarves and elves coming together to build a secluded fortress city. The Nein find a relatively warm welcome in town and are quickly pointed to the right district. The townsfolk are familiar with the name Smeltborne and with their help the Nein find a young blacksmith with the same name. He informs them that the sword’s forger was his father, Dulgrim Smeltborne, who died four years ago. He does still have the directions on how to reforge the sword, but he requires a special material called iceflex that is only made by a white dragon’s icy breath transforming mithril. It’s super rare, super expensive, and super dangerous to try and obtain. Sounds like a job for the Nein!
This episode was absolutely amazing. I know in the past, I haven’t enjoyed the live shows too much because of the crowd noise, technical issues, and the cast learning to play in front of an enormous crowd. I do have to say that Gen Con 2019 was phenomenal. The camera work was fantastic, the mics were great the entire time, and the cast has finally hit that impressive line between playing it up to the crowd and staying true to their characters in the moment. There were so many humorous, terrifying, action packed moments that I couldn’t write about all of them in this article. This is definitely a live show to remember. Next week is going to be interesting, with new special guest star Mica Burton! She is a talented actor, cosplayer, voice actor, and DnD nerd. Thursday is almost here!
Don’t Miss It!
Doty take this down! Critical Role has announced a special Taryion Darrington, Adventures of the Darrington Brigade live one-shot in Austin Texas on November 23rd! Tickets go on sale August 12th. Words cannot express how ready I am for this.
Between the Sheets is back with a kickass episode featuring Amanda Palmer. New episodes will be released once a month, dates TBA. Travis Willingham’s Yee-Haw Game Ranch is back with a new theme and new deep lore drops. It’s weird, it’s puppets, I don’t get it, but I love it. Long live the chosen one.