Deven Rue

Deven Rue
Deven Rue
Full nameDeven Rue
Also known asMistress of Maps
Internet presence

Deven Rue is the official Critical Role cartographer who creates maps by hand and digitally.

Biography and Critical Role Productions works[edit | edit source]

Deven Rue has been drawing Dungeons & Dragons maps since she was a teenager and the first map made by her was to help settle an argument during a D&D session where players were debating their current disposition in the world. She drew a "very crude map of circles for towns, lines for roads, dashes for when they went off the road, and x's for encounters", which the players used until the end of the campaign. Only "much later" when she shared her hand-drawn map of Skyrim, Deven took a suggestion to create maps for a living.[1]

Deven became a fan of Critical Role since "about eight months" since the start of Campaign 1. During the course of the campaign, she wanted to to illustrate a map of Tal'Dorei for "a long time", but decided to wait until the continent was fleshed out enough to make the details on the map as close to the DM's vision as possible, eventually drawing her interpretation of the Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting's map.[1]

Deven Rue created the prop maps for Campaign 2 and Campaign 3 of Critical Role, as well as the Explorer's Guide to Wildemount. Some of her maps were featured on Wyrmwood products used in Critical Role giveaways, and sold in the Critical Role online store as prints or blankets.

Some of her maps featured in the show to date include:

When Deven Rue developed maps for Exandria, Matt usually gave her a general draft of a map and they discussed the biomes, as well as a feelling he wanted to capture in the finished map and geographical changes or explanations needed for unusual landscape features. Deven created a draft, Matt gave his feedback, then Deven layed out the ink.[2]

When working on the maps for Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, Deven Rue chose to color every building on her maps a different color and, upon a suggestion from Matthew Mercer, colored each city's districts in its own tone to give them a distinct feeling.[3] The map of Port Damali has "the largest palette library of any map Deven has ever made". The initial design for this city changed from three hills to a three tiered cascading hill, which allowed canals throughout the city and gave the Tumbledowns name an additional meaning.[4]

See also[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Artist Deven Rue puts Critical Role on the map (January 2018) on
  2. Deven Rue (@DevenRue) on Twitter: "Matt gives me a general draft of a map that we discuss the biomes, overall “feel” he wants for the finished map, any geographical changes or explanations needed for unusual landscape features, & the like. I draw up a draft, make changes to fit his vision of the area, then ink" (January 7, 2022). (backup link)
  3. Deven Rue (@DevenRue) on Twitter: "Thank you! However, I cannot take all the credit for the district coloring. This was something @matthewmercer wanted in the other city maps we made and I continued it in Port Damali because I love the idea & how well it helped separate the districts." (December 12, 2021) — in reply to @kittleimp: "You've made some of my all-time favorite maps! The Port Damali map specifically is beautiful, I love the use of color to give the districts a different feeling." (backup link)
  4. Deven Rue (@DevenRue) on Twitter: "Fun facts about the Port Damali map: There are over 100 market stalls in The Gilded Esplanade. It has the largest palette library of any map I've ever made. We changed the design from 3 hills to a 3 tiered cascading hill to create it's current layout. This gave the Tumbledowns name even more meaning. It also allowed for the cool water feature of the canals throughout the city. Blown up you can see the streets are cobblestone & individual garden patches. (yes, I am that obsessed with details)" (December 12, 2021). (backup link)