Poking around social media and wow people legitimately think ONLY the CritRole comics are being delayed when it's, like, Dark Horse's entire stock. Like, how do I communicate to the fandom that it is not exclusive to Critical Role comics? This is, in fact, something happening to the entire print comics industry, the entire print industry really? Because, yanno, COVID-related supply chain issues that are still a thing?
It's just that Dark Horse has been MUCH more forthcoming about delays than the other publishing houses and generally most forthcoming about Critical Role delays.
Crit Role Miniature Rollout: C3E23 To the Skies
With Andrew Harshman
An archive and analysis of the minis used on CR.
Weregnome shenanigans, Great Orcish Bakeoff treats, skyships and skydiving, quite a variety of D&D activities going on in this Critical Role ep. And we got ourselves a new custom terrain set piece. @Minileed has done it again!
Fanfic authors, prepare to skyship your favorite characters, it’s time for Crit Role Miniature Rollout Campaign 3 Episode 23!
Chest and Trove 5E Condition Rings
Mats by Mars: Badlands Tabletop Wargaming Play Mat
@Minileed Custom Sky Ship
Icons of the Realms: The Falling Star Sailing wheel
Arcknight Spell Effects
Axe N Shield Single Flyer Risers - Clear Mithril
LITKO Flying Figure Stands
Campaign 3 Party Minis Wizkids Sculpts
Waterdeep Dragon Heist #06a Merchant
Lords of Madness #06 Cloaker Ambusher
Eberron: Rising from the Last War #26 Cloaker
Fangs & Talons #14 Goliath Fighter
Critical Role Dwendalian Farmer
Tyranny of Dragons #34 Ballista
Icewind Dale Rime of the Frostmaiden #39 Avarice
Assorted scatter terrain
Skirath Hunter Lords of Madness #06 Cloaker Ambusher
Mini images sourced from minisgallery.com
The texture sculpted into this model is impressive. All the scales and folds make this simple creature design a more interesting mini. I am quite curious about the monster this cloaker miniature represents, the skirath hunter. What’s their deal? Why are they attacking skyships? Were they maybe drawn to Bells Hells for some reason?
Skirath Hunter Eberron: Rising from the Last War #26 Cloaker
So I thought for sure this cloaker had cutesy lil’ trex arms holding lil’ daggers, but those are apparently mandibles are something. Furthermore, I’ve made another discovery, the name cloaker is very literal as these monsters have a false appearance ability to look like a literal cloak. What an incredibly specific ambush technique.
Next time you retrieve a jacket from your hallway closet, remember that a closet can be its own dungeon crawl. A one room, one combat 1x1 inch grid square dungeon crawl. No wait- the cloaker is a large creature, that wouldn’t even work. Since the cloaker is a 2x2 large creature, that means it measures approximately 10 by 10 feet in size! So like, they use their false appearance to look like a MASSIVE cloak? 10 by 10 feet, that’s not a cloak, that’s a circus tent. I gotta tell ya, I’m not so sure about this monster concept.
Moving onto the model itself. Not as much sculpt detail as the other cloaker, but the posing is quite good. The way the wings are arranged sells that billowy, floaty sort of vibe that I imagine a cloaker would have. The onscreen model looks a lot greener. Not sure if that’s the result of a repaint or of studio lighting.
The Nonplayer Characters
Xandis Icewind Dale Rime of the Frostmaiden #39 Avarice
This miniature paint job needs a few more colors. The character’s hair, head, and feather collar all just sorta blend together. I didn’t even realize this mini was of a tiefling at first. I thought they were a dragonborn or lizard folk. The color scheme is based directly on the NPC artwork from Rime of the Frost Maiden and I don’t think it translated well into Wizkids miniature form.
Gordi Fangs & Talons #14 Goliath Fighter
“Gordi the Goliath”, love the alliteration, don’t love the mini though. A bit of a wimpy looking goliath with a wimpy looking weapon. Aren’t goliaths supposed to be pretty hulking? This fella looks downright spindly by goliath standards. I dig the face markings though, that is very goliathy.
Terana Critical Role Dwendalian Farmer
Don’t be fooled by the pleasant exterior, this farmer mini is capable and ready to start the peasant revolt! A righteous model for certain. Super useful mini. Like how many villager prepainted minis are there? Not many. How many villager dwarf minis? Basically zero. And what’s even better, is that the farming implement looks vicious enough that this mini easily works as an adventurer mini. Solid paint and great sculpt to boot.
Khalil Benes Waterdeep Dragon Heist #006a Merchant
This model is back, having appeared last campaign as a denizen of Cognouza. Mighty fine merchant model. I like how this character is staring at the scroll in their hand as if to say, “What is this?” He needs a scroll of identify just to identify that scroll!
Ballista Tyranny of Dragons #34 Ballista
Mini image sourced from minisgallery.com
Not the most baller of ballistae, but it’s basically bearable. The sculpt and casting mold is kinda lazy. The trigger portion is extra wide for no reason that I can think of other than for ease of manufacturing. And the scaffolding on the bottom should have space between the pieces of wood, but they are just filled in with plastic. Overall, fine for a piece of terrain I suppose.
Closing Thoughts and Predictions
So with a custom vehicle this impressive, I can only assume we will see this skyship again. Not the wildest of predictions. That being said, if this is the only session to feature this ship, I would have such respect for Critical Role and for Matt Mercer. Wow, what a power move that would be. Such a mini flex.
See ya next sesh!
Ok a while ago I was asked to elaborate on my “Ashton has something similar to fey morality and that helps them relate to and get along with Fearne” post and I. Uh. Forgot to for do that. But now I’m going to! It’s a bit rambly, but here it is.
A principle of fey morality in almost every interpretation of fey you hear is contracts. Contracts and deals. Fey are notorious in most stories for making deals and strictly abiding by them, and expecting or forcing the other people in the deal to as well. The deal doesn’t have to be fair, it doesn’t even have to be fully understood by the other party in the deal, but it has to be followed to the word. This can be used to either side’s advantage.
And this is also absolutely a core tenet of Ashton’s morality. Maybe not them tricking other people as much, but following deals to the letter and honoring them fully? That is pretty much their key principle, at least that we’ve seen through the campaign so far. He wasn’t mad at Evon for almost killing them because he almost killed them, he’s mad because that wasn’t part of the deal. Evon specifically said it would be non lethal and then broke that part of the contract, which is what upset Ashton most. Ashton falls on deals and contracts to support most of their functionality in the world. He follows Rules like fey do. You don’t take copper from people who are poor enough to need it, for instance. They aren’t an especially moral person I’d say, but they keep their word, and they expect others to as well. He followed through on his deal with Jiana Hexum despite it being a clearly uncomfortable situation for him, because he follows through with all his deals. He has rigid personal laws that mimic how I see fey laws portrayed very often.
On the other hand, faeries don’t always want law, in fact they almost never do. They want their personal laws, but they don’t want to follow actual city laws or whatever, in fact, they often like chaos. Outside of their own personal rules it’s fuck everything else! And Ashton also represents that side of things. They obviously have absolutely no care for the law, in fact they actively dislike it and seek to break it. Constantly. Because those aren’t their personal laws.
Now, this is getting into things I’ve noticed specifically from our main exandrian fey (note I’m counting Fearne and Artagan as our only main exandrian fey, anyone else I just don’t think we know enough about or I can’t remember enough about them). So. Our exandrian fey both tend to display this wild joy from new experiences. They seek them out, good or bad, because they just want to try something new. Artagan, from choking Vax to death or straightening his hair, Fearne, doing… anything, both strive for new experiences. Ashton often does the same. That love of chaos and the unique, for instance the love of the hilarity of Marwa or Laudna, or somewhat enjoying the fight with Ratanish even though he got beat to shit, they want to try new things. And once they realize they don’t like something they don’t want to do it again, but they’ve tried it. The more general love of chaos also fits in here as well, Ashton’s love of mild chaos, like the stealing game with Fearne, is very much fey behavior.
Another exandrian fey behavior I’ve noticed in Fearne and Artagan and Ashton is taking care of your own. I wouldn’t even call it love or compassion or care, not always, but more… possession. Not in a creepy way, but in a “These Are My People So I Will Take Care Of Them. Because They’re Mine” way. Ashton piling gold on the krook house people and buying things for the party? Helping the party out and taking care of them? Those are his people now, so he’s gonna make sure His People and His Crew are ok. Fearne does this as well, especially with Orym and Dorian, and Artagan did the same with Jester and very occasionally the Mighty Nein (though that situation was a lot more complicated). What is theirs is theirs and they’re gonna keep and take care of what is theirs, including their people.
Now, not all of this is innate, I’m sure. Some of it might be a reaction to trauma and circumstances, some of it might even be faked. For instance, the brushing off of chaos and supposed love of new circumstances could be a coping mechanism for dealing with thing that actually did affect them, because pretending they didn’t makes it easier, you know? But overall, I think their behavior tends to fall into patterns that mimic fey patterns enough that their morality and functionality in the world is comparable and interesting.
Edited: for some clarity and grammar