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Arbie's Unoriginally Titled Book Blog

It's a blog! Mainly of book reviews.

Currently reading

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Paola Ivanov, Julien Chapuis, Jonathan Fine
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J├╝rgen Scheunemann
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Ray Bradbury
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Michael Kidner
Francis Pratt, Michael Kidner, Irving Sandler
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Complete Poems, 1904-1962
E.E. Cummings
Progress: 488/1102 pages

Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins, Mercer & Colville

Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins - Matthew V. Mercer, Matthew Colville

Imagine, if you will, "...a bunch of...nerdy-ass voice actors sit around and play Dungeons & Dragons." Live. On the internet. Every Thursday night. They call the show Critical Role and their group of disparate and sometimes desperate adventurers, Vox Machina because they like bad puns. But those adventures took place in private for over a year before they were persuaded to go public by Queen of the Nerds, Felica Day herself. Implausibly, their ridiculously niche netcast becomes so popular that they can fill actual theatres for episodes with a paying public audience, sell mountains of merchandise and drown in unsolicited fan art contributions, the best of which end up in a printed book. But that's not all - a synopsis of the early, unbroadcast adventures of the crazy Machine Voice adventuring party (did they really mean Vox Ex Machina?) isn't enough for the rabid fans. A six issue e-comic series is produced and eventually gets two print omnibus editions - one is a limited edition hardback in a slip-case, bound in faux leather, with some bonus material at the back. It cost a fortune but it seems to have sold out. And this is it.

Vox Machina: Origins has artwork that captures the characters well and some neat graphic techniques that evoke tabletop fantasy roleplaying really well and the story itself tackles how this group of more or less crazy future savers of the world met whilst trying to get paid for figuring out how a swamp ended up cursed. Unfortunately, it's too short. Whilst the actual adventure of the cursed swamp is brought to a satisfactory conclusion, two of the legendary group don't appear in the story at all. They must have joined later. Hopefully there will be more Origins to come in the future.

Look, seriously, this is all true:
I've listened to the entire first campaign. All several hundred hours of it. Some of it more than once. Keyleth is the best. The cows were awesome. "We're basically gods," was the most hilariously, serendipitously ironic statement I've ever heard. Zara was fabulous. So was Gilmore. The black-powder salesman was stupendous. I am super-nerdy. Get over it.