The Gates of Zadash

"The Gates of Zadash"
Campaign 2 episode

Original thumbnail for "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08), featuring Laura Bailey.

Current thumbnail for "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08), featuring Laura Bailey.

Episode no.Episode 8
AirdateMarch 1, 2018 19:00 PST
Running time3:47:09
Links and related articles
Talks Machina
"Talks Machina #56: The Gates of Zadash" (TM2x08)
Episode chronology
"Hush" (2x07)
"Steam and Conversation" (2x09)
Airdate order
"Talks Machina #55: Hush" (TM2x07)
"Talks Machina #56: The Gates of Zadash" (TM2x08)
List of Campaign 2 episodes

"The Gates of Zadash" (2x08) is the eighth episode of the second campaign of Critical Role. The group decides upon a name and leaves Alfield, heading back on the open road to Zadash... though not without having to deal with the dangers of the road.

Synopsis[edit | edit source]

Pre-Show[edit | edit source]

Announcements[edit | edit source]

  • D&D Beyond returns as a sponsor! Sam reads stories from critters...all of which somehow revolve around Sam covering himself in mayo.
  • Amazon Prime users can get a free Twitch subscription every month with Twitch Prime.
  • Brian W. Foster hosts Talks Machina every Tuesday! Matt promises to foist this announcement onto Marisha in the future.
  • Podcast for Hush is up on the G&S website.
  • Emerald City Comic Con is this weekend! Dark Horse will be selling the limited print run of Vox Machina Origins there. Travis and Laura will get there around "noon-thirty" on Friday, March 2.
  • Issue #5 of Vox Machina comes out digitally on March 7.
  • The cast recommends you check out, support, and/or volunteer for 826 LA or local branches near you.
  • Matt will be at Lexington Comic and Toy Convention next weekend.
  • We're Alive: Frontier just began on Project Alpha, hosted by Ivan Van Norman. Marisha's new show with Matt Key, Key Questions, begins next Tuesday (March 6).
  • Laura and Travis are having a baby! Sam suggests having a naming contest (Laura shoots him down).

Part I[edit | edit source]

The Gratefulness of Alfield[edit | edit source]

The party notes the disappearance of Shakäste and expresses concerns for Caleb's withdrawn state and wellbeing before Mollymauk suggests the best way to prove that Caleb is okay is to get really really drunk on some really expensive liquor. On the way Beau learns that her new goggles give her darkvision and make her look like a nerd, according to Caleb. They proceed to drink and party at the Feed and Mead for several hours. During this time, Caleb Identifies several of the items that the party has acquired, including a Wand of Smiles, some nonmagical manacles, the gnoll pack leader's glaive Fleshrender, a Ring of Water Walking, and Glove of Blasting.

The party ends up renting additional rooms for the night. In Nott and Caleb's room, Caleb resummons Frumpkin and immediately calls him over, then wears him as a scarf, which Frumpkin purrs at. Jester writes in her journal to The Traveler, noting that she misses him and wonders if he can still be with her this far from Nicodranas. The Traveler comforts Jester psychically, and Beau comforts her with hugs and tissues. Beau opens the stolen Baumbauch packages, finding two inventory updates, one complaint, and a coded letter about a future shipment of bloodroot to Demedan Baumbauch from "The Gentleman" at the Evening Nip. Caleb investigates the pouch Nott stole from Shakäste and shares the gold inside with her. Nott stays up late, crafting acid with the supplies she bought earlier. Molly passes out early, and Fjord stays downstairs to people-watch.

The next day, before leaving town, the party collects payment for their gnoll ears from Bryce. When asked again for their party name, they settle on The Mighty Nein.

Caleb:  Ja. 'Mighty' in Common is spelled M-I-G-H-T-Y.
Bryce:  Yes.
Caleb:  Now we come to the next word. N-E-I-N. We are The Mighty Nein.

— Caleb gives Bryce the party's group name[1]

Bryce presents them with a thank-you gift from the town of Alfield: a new, clean cart. Jester asks to see Starosta Kosh and blackmails him into writing a letter of recommendation for Fjord to attend the Soltryce Academy.[2] While they are waiting for the letter, Jester tells the party about her mother, the Ruby of the Sea; which prompted her to sing an impromptu song,[3] then she spoke of her exile from Nicodranas; and her quest to find her father.

All of their business in Alfield now concluded, the Mighty Nein set off north toward Zadash.

Break[edit | edit source]

  • Journal promo for "We're Alive: Frontier."
  • Dry erase marker promo for Key Question
  • How to Play: Grimm Forest

Part II[edit | edit source]

Bandits in the Night[edit | edit source]

The first day's travel on the Amber Road is uneventful, and the party spends a night camping on the side of the road. On the second day, they pass a cart with three well-dressed individuals who do not respond to their hail.

On the second night, a group of bandits sneaks past Mollymauk's watch and triggers Caleb's Alarm spell, prompting Caleb to wake up the camp. The bandits are led by a man named Trevor, whom Caleb charms using Friends. They convince the bandits (with some added help from Nott) that they're all infected with a terrible form of syphilis and that they should just leave. The spell ends before Caleb can convince the bandits to take the offer, and so Caleb fires three bolts of flame at the leader while the bandits begin to fire crossbows at him. Beau moves by Caleb to try and catch them. Jester summons her spiritual weapon (a huge pink/purple lollipop) and whacks Trevor into the sky where he is burned to ash in midair. As Trevor falls, Caleb is hit by three arrows and - despite Beau catching one of them - he falls unconscious immediately. The rest of the party damage two more of the bandits and prepare for a fight, but the bandits have seen enough and call a truce. Jester then intimidates them into giving her all of their stuff, including their clothes, and they comply. The party finds that all of the bandits appear to be thin and poor townspeople, not professional or impressive thieves of the night.

Would you agree that the previous leadership of this group has probably failed you on some level?

— Molly to the defeated bandits[4]

Molly uses Charm Person to convince the bandits to keep their clothes but leave their weapons and strive for a more honest way of life. He also forces two of the bandits to play Parchment, Boulder, Shears to decide the new leader, which turns out to be a young man called Zenny. Then he gives them each a gold piece, and, with some prompting from Beau to spread the word about the Mighty Nein, the reformed bandits leave for Felderwin. Caleb regains consciousness and immediately begins to pull out the arrows, much to everyone's opposition. The resulting holes are covered by Jester; two with her hands, and after failing to convince Caleb to not pull out the third, the last with her knee. She heals him and he passes back out from pain and blood loss. Meanwhile, Nott has stolen four of the bandits' horses, which she names Loo, John, Crapper, and Toilet. Jester takes Toilet, Beau takes Crapper, Fjord takes John and Molly takes Loo. Caleb and Nott use WC and the horse from Alfield, which are pulling the cart. Caleb rests in the back while Nott drives the wagon. Later on, Caleb wakes up with a sudden shout and heavy breathing, then responds to everyone's concerns about it with unconvincing statements that he is fine. This prompts Beau to say that they will need to have a long talk about all of Caleb's problems.

Entering Zadash[edit | edit source]

The next morning brings a cold rain. The party passes an old graveyard dating back to the Julous Dominion along the Amber Road and arrives in the afternoon at the outer wall of Zadash. Passing through the gates, they are hailed by a stranger who offers to show them around the city. They hire the man, Ulysses Stanneras, and he tells them where to find all of the shops and inns they are looking for.

Once Ulysses has left at dusk, Beau guides the party to the Pentamarket. She and Molly go to look for mulled wine while the rest visit The Invulnerable Vagrant. Inside, they meet the proprietor, Enchanter Pumat Sol, and his three magical duplicates. The party purchases several healing potions, fine inks and paper for Caleb, and a Fantastic Haversack, relinquishing the gnoll's magical glaive for trade-in value. As Spark Hammer Smithing is closed for the evening, the party then goes directly to The Leaky Tap.

Featured characters[edit | edit source]

Main player characters[edit | edit source]

Companions[edit | edit source]

These characters are familiars or other companions of the player characters.

Returning[edit | edit source]

These characters previously appeared in Campaign 2 or any other Critical Role work.

New[edit | edit source]

These characters have not previously appeared in Campaign 2 or any other Critical Role work, though they may have been previously mentioned.

Mentioned[edit | edit source]

Quotations[edit | edit source]

  • Molly: Would you agree that the previous leadership of this group has probably failed you on some level?
    Zenny: Erm... Ya know... I would say so, yeah.
    Molly: Look where you are right now.
    Zenny: I know, Trevor's turned to ashes.
    Molly: It was a bad decision!
    Zenny: It was very bad (almost crying) he was a very bad man.
    Molly: Perhaps you should rethink your line of work.
    Zenny: Yeah... Yeah, you're right.
    Molly: Put your clothes back on, this is embarrassing. All of you!
  • Molly: This means that your terrible bandit days are behind you, cos you're really not good at this. I mean, we were barely paying attention, this is pathetic...
    Beau: Well, you were barely paying attention.
    Molly: Well, let's not, let's not... cast aspersions on new management, it's only been two days.

Inventory[edit | edit source]

Adjustment Count Item Source Destination Notes
Transferred 1 pearl ring Nott Caleb as a spell component
Expended 3 gold Molly various villagers payment for drinks
Transferred 1 Glove of Blasting party Fjord
Transferred 1 Ring of Water Walking Fjord Nott
Transferred 1 Wand of Smiles
Expended 6 silver Beau Crute payment for 2 additional rooms
Acquired 113 gold Shakäste's pouch Caleb discovered in pouch
Transferred 60 gold Caleb Nott Caleb shared the contents of Shakäste's pouch with Nott
Crafted 1 vial of acid alchemy supplies Nott
Converted 1 pearl brass ring with pearl Caleb brass ring discarded
Relinquished 1 jar of gnoll and hyena ears Jester Bryce contained 14 sets of gnoll ears, 5 sets of hyena ears; exchanged for 570 gold
Acquired 570 gold Bryce party payment for 19 sets of gnoll ears
Acquired 35 gold payment for bringing back 7 villagers' bodies
Acquired 300 gold payment for saving 12 villagers
Transferred 150 gold party Beau the 905 gold from Bryce was split into 150 gold apiece with the remaining 5 gold unspecified
Transferred Caleb
Transferred Fjord
Transferred Jester
Transferred Molly
Transferred Nott
Acquired 1 horse-drawn cart town of Alfield party as a thank-you gift, to replace their current cart
Acquired 1 letter of recommendation Starosta Kosh Fjord for application to the Soltryce Academy
Relinquished 8 gold Molly bandits as incentive to reform their ways
Acquired 4 horses bandits party
Acquired 2 heavy crossbows
Acquired 2 light crossbows
Acquired 2 hand crossbows
Acquired 43 crossbow bolts
Acquired 6 short swords
Acquired 2 daggers
Acquired 1 rusted helmet Molly graveyard a relic from the Julous Dominion
Relinquished 1 silver Beau boy outside Zadash
Relinquished 2 Gold Caleb Ulysses Stanneras telling Caleb about the bookstore
Relinquished 1 Gold Molly Ulysses Stanneras telling Molly about the bath house
Relinquished 2 gold ? Ulysses Stanneras for his services
Acquired ? paper and inks The Invulnerable Vagrant Caleb 150 gold worth
Acquired 2 potion of healing Fjord for 50 gold apiece
Acquired 2 potions of healing Nott for 50 gold apiece
Acquired 1 Fantastic Haversack Jester exchanged for Fleshrender and 200 gold
Expended 150 gold Caleb The Invulnerable Vagrant for paper and inks
Expended 50 gold Fjord for 1 potion of healing
Expended 100 gold Nott for 2 potions of healing
Relinquished 1 Fleshrender Jester exchanged for Fantastic Haversack
Expended 200 gold
Acquired 12 pastries vendor Jester and Nott 2 for Nott, 6 for Jester, the rest eaten
Expended 6 silver Molly vendor for pastries and mulled wine

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • In this episode, the Campaign 2 adventuring party adopted a group name: Mighty Nein.[1]
  • Matt stated that the date in part of this episode was the 12th of Fessuran.[7] This however was later retconned in "A Favor in Kind" (2x16), which stated that Harvest Close, on the 3rd of Fessuran, was five days away.[8] This date was consistently used for the rest of the campaign.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08) at 1:04:18.
  2. "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08) from 1:11:29 through 1:14:44.
  3. "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08) at 1:17:27.
  4. "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08) at 2:19:09.
  5. "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08) at 2:11:55.
  6. "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08) at 2:18:30.
  7. "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08) at 1:29:08.
  8. "A Favor in Kind" (2x16) at 3:02:32.