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6 Things You Didn’t Know About the New Critical Role Opening

Critical Role is a live Dungeons & Dragons show featuring Dungeon Master Matthew Mercer and his troupe of fellow voice actors. Catch them every Thursday night at 7:00 PM PT on the Geek & Sundry Twitch channel and on Alpha.

Episode 44, “The Diver’s Grave,” gave Critters one of the best surprises of this Critical Role campaign with a brand new animated opening! The anime-inspired opening credits featured a brand new song, jaw-dropping character and background design, and more hidden details than you might expect. Kami Areopagita, whom you may remember us chatting with earlier this year about the unforgettable D&D Beyond animated ad, is graciously back again to share some of those details you may have missed even in your repeat viewings.

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The song is written and performed by your favorite nerdy-ass voice actors.

Sam Riegel wrote the lyrics (have you memorized them yet?), and you’ll hear Sam and Travis Willingham as background vocals in the first moments of the opening. Most Critters can likely recognize Laura Bailey and Ashley Johnson as the main vocals. The music is once again by Jason Charles Miller, talented composer of the original Critical Role theme, and he also co-wrote the song with Sam.

There’s also a violin performance by Critter Colm McGuinness soaring through the song, the fan composer who also wrote and performed the “Welcome to Wildemount” music you hear every week before the Critical Role livestream begins.

The song is called “Your Turn to Roll.”

And you can buy and download it right now from iTunes!

It also has over a million views on YouTube.

Yep.

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The entire opening was animated by hand, by a team of just three people.

Kami and Kevin, a sister and brother team, handled the main animation duties. Kami drew and animated the characters, and Kevin focused on colors, special effects, and creature design. Additional backgrounds were drawn by Corinne. Together they created an animation that Critical Role fans will be talking about for years to come.

It took five months of hard work to complete.

In fact, the original storyboards for the opening had Mollymauk sitting in the cart. And Travis and Sam kept it a secret from the rest of the cast during that time!

There are tons of hidden details and Easter eggs in the animation.

Although Kami and Kevin weren’t afraid to put a few in plain sight.

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See if you can also spot:

  • The Gentleman toasts Leonardo DiCaprio style.
  • Calianna, Nila, Keg, and Shakäste make quick appearances.

“Ha!” you might say. “Those are so obvious!” Well, Kami herself let us know a few more details you may have missed:

  • Every mushroom on the zombies cast by Caduceus’ spell are based on real mushrooms. (“We watched so many mushroom time lapse videos that we started dreaming of mushrooms,” Kami tells us.)
  • The artists’ initials are signed in one background.
  • Every unicorn in Jester’s army does something different, each with their own personality.
  • The minotaur drawn on Jester’s wall is Blude, Marion Lavorre’s bodyguard.
  • Watch Yasha when she rages. “Yasha’s eyes and hair turn black, and if you watch closely, the shadows on Yasha shift to help create her Necrotic Shroud,” says Kami.
  • There is a very well hidden reference to Vox Machina. (And one that’s obvious.) Did you see it?

Bonus: Marisha Ray sang a very… special version of the theme song.

WANT MORE CRITICAL ROLE?

  • Catch up from the very beginning of the first campaign or keep up with the second with the Critical Role Podcast.
  • Tune into the official aftershow, Talks Machina, live on Alpha and Twitch, Tuesdays at 7pm PT.
  • And don’t miss new episodes of Critical Role LIVE on Alpha and Twitch, Thursdays at 7pm PT.

All Images: Critical Role / Kamille and Kevin Areopagita

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