Critical Role—a mega-popular Dungeons & Dragons game that’s spawned its own official campaign settings and animated series—is doing another run of its “choose their adventure” charity one-shots. The Critical Role Foundation has partnered with Red Nose Day and Comic Relief US to run a one-shot with a twist: donate, and you’ll be able to vote on how the adventure’ll go.
Last year comedian, television host, and self-confessed nerd Stephen Colbert’s character was saddled with a bee companion, a pacifistic living weapon, and the burning need to recover his dignity—all at the whims of the public. This year, voters will also be able to choose the gang’s classes.
Critical Role’s core cast members Liam O’Brien, Laura Bailey, Taliesin Jaffe and DM Matthew Mercer will be joined by Sam Richardson (I Think You Should Leave, Veep, and Ted Lasso) and Tony Hale (Arrested Development, Veep, Toy Story 4). This isn’t even Hale’s first step into the world of Exandria (the group’s setting), as he voiced Sir Gregory Fince in The Legend of Vox Machina animated series.
The polls are open from now until November 3, while the one shot itself will be broadcast November 28. That gap’s likely to give Mercer some breathing room with all the wild curveballs he’s been thrown. Once the polls are closed, you’ll still be able to donate to the Critical Role Foundation’s fundraiser by visiting its donorbox.
At the time of writing the fundraiser’s already gathered over $11,000, with the most donations geared towards a neck-and-neck race to determine whether Laura Bailey will be playing a Barbarian or a Paladin.
That’s presumably out of a desire to get her into melee range for once—her past characters Vex’ahlia, Jester, and Imogen have been a Ranger, Cleric, and Sorcerer: focused on casting and peppering foes at range. I’m just happy to see Taliesin Jaffe, Critical Role’s resident goth, is likely to play a Rogue. It’s about time.
Red Nose Day (and its charity telethon Comic Relief) form part of an annual fundraising campaign to end child poverty. Originally UK-based, Red Nose Day began in the US in 2015, though there was a US Comic Relief charity inspired by its UK cousin that ran from 1986 to 2010. I’m from the UK, and I grew up with its fundraisers (and silly plastic red noses), so to see planets collide between the charity and one of my favourite livestreams is as heartwarming as it is strange.
Still, the Critical Role Foundation’s been doing some good work. In the past, it partnered with charities like OutRight Action International, 826LA, and the First Nations Development Institute to use Critical Role’s runaway popularity to “leave the world better than we found it.”
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