Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein

"Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein"
One-shot episode
"Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) thumbnail featuring art by Anna Zee
Episode no.Episode 40
AirdateJune 18, 2021 19:00 PDT
Running time4:19:52
Game systemDungeons & Dragons
Starring
Laura Bailey as Jester Lavorre
Taliesin Jaffe as Percival de Rolo/Mollymauk Tealeaf
Ashley Johnson as Pike Trickfoot
Liam O'Brien as Vax'ildan
Marisha Ray as Beauregard Lionett
Sam Riegel as Scanlan Shorthalt
Travis Willingham as Fjord
and
Matthew Mercer as the Dungeon Master
Links and related articles
Episode chronology
Previous
"The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Part I: Death & Taxes" (OSx39)
Next
"The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Part II: A Faulty Foundation" (OSx41)
Airdate order
Previous
"Critical Role Campaign 2 Wrap-Up" (Mx10)
Next
"The Nameless Ones" (E1x01)
List of one-shots

"Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) is the fortieth one-shot episode of Critical Role. Legendary Exandrian heroes Vox Machina and the Mighty Nein face off in an epic TEAM DEATHMATCH! This one-shot was unlocked as part of the The Legend of Vox Machina Kickstarter campaign.

Synopsis[edit | edit source]

Announcements[edit | edit source]

  • This one-shot was unlocked as part of the Kickstarter for the Legend of Vox Machina animated series.
  • Huge thanks to Anna Zee for tonight's incredible art!

Part I[edit | edit source]

Before the start of the battle, Matt has each of the cast introduce themselves as which character they are playing tonight. On the Mighty Nein side are Fjord, Jester, and Beauregard, and on the Vox Machina side are Pike, Scanlan, and Vax'ildan. Since there are an odd number of players at the table, Taliesin receives the interesting role of playing both Percival and Mollymauk.

With a flash and a ringing sound, the three members of the Mighty Nein find themselves upon a field with various structures, including a tower not far from view. About a hundred feet away is another flash in which appear three members of Vox Machina. Upon hearing screeching, they look up in the sky to see hundreds of swarming shadows, as well as devilish creatures. All laughter from these creatures stops as attention shifts to a being at the top of the central tower, a ten-foot-tall devilish being of grey skin and white hair that goes down past his ankles. He welcomes both of the groups explaining that they've been brought here to settle a disagreement. He claims there are boons and treasures that can be sought to aid them in battle, as well as a final twist: a gem, half blue and half purple. The gem contains two souls, one from each of their groups. Touching the gem will gain that team an ally until the other steals it back. The gem is set in a metal box at the top of the tower. In a flash of lightning, both teams find themselves transported to opposite sides of the field, and the battle begins.

Everyone receives a round of preparation in which they are allowed to do an action or a bonus action:

  • Fjord sets a portal at the top of the tower.
  • Jester Invokes Duplicity.
  • Beau activates her lightning gloves.
  • Pike casts Beacon of Hope on Vax and Scanlan.
  • Vax casts Bless on Pike, Scanlan, and himself.
  • Scanlan sends Bigby's Hand to the top of the tower and blindly swings for the box.

At the top of the round, Beau enters one of the towers and opens a chest. She finds a Rope of Entanglement that can restrain something within 30 feet, and uses her bonus action to get as close as she can to the central tower. Vax activates the Boots of Haste and bamfs out his wings. He uses his movement to see what Bigby's Hand has grabbed and informs Scanlan that the box is in the hand. He then hides behind the tower. Fjord appears at the top of the tower and sees the hand with the box in it. He strikes twice at the hand with Star Razor and jumps onto it. Scanlan uses his bonus action to attempt to flick Fjord into a pool of lava. Seeing this, Fjord jumps off the hand, landing prone on the ground beside the lava. Scanlan stops the hand short of the lava and brings it five feet closer to him. He then uses his action to attempt to Dominate Person, from which Fjord just saves, and Scanlan loses Bigby's Hand as the box clatters to the floor. Jester casts Fire Storm towards the other side of the field, catching both Pike and Scanlan. Erupting in flame, Pike loses concentration on Beacon of Hope. Pike activates her Sprinter's Boots and touches the gem. The gem turns completely blue as Percy appears right by her. Pike casts Guiding Bolt at Jester, but to the frustration of Pike and her team, the spell passes right through the duplicate. Percy, watching Jester's duplicate "react to the pain", takes three shots at Fjord with Animus, also pumping in Cabal's Ruin. After repairing the gun from the last shot, Percy runs up the tower behind him.

The gem appears and floats into the chamber by Beau, and she cheerfully takes the opportunity to grab it. Seeing the gem vanish, she calls for Caduceus, before Molly appears at the top of the tower and falls. Beau then uses her bonus action to move towards Jester. The gem moves into a tower on the opposite side of the field. Vax sees Fjord on the floor and sinks Whisper into him. After Star Razor hits Vax, Fjord teleports ten feet toward Molly, still lying on the ground. Vax, seeing Fjord teleport, stabs him again with the Life-Stealing Dagger. With his bonus action, he stabs Fjord again. As Star Razor hits Vax for a third time, he loses concentration on Bless. Fjord takes an attack of opportunity as Vax flies back up to the tower. Fjord, heavily injured, gets up from prone and walks over to Pike and Scanlan, asking for a truce. He casts Thunderstep which Scanlan Counterspells. Seeing no other option, Fjord casts Marine Layer and backs away. Scanlan feels out for Pike then shoots Thunderwave out in front of him, hoping to catch Fjord and succeeding and he is pushed five feet away. Scanlan uses Bardic Inspiration on Pike then backs out around the tower. Molly activates one of his scimitars with a radiant light and takes two swings at Scanlan, branding him on the first hit. Jester, not being able to see anyone but Beau and Vax, successfully casts Dispel Magic on Vax's boots. She then runs into a tower while moving her duplicate 30 feet forward. Pike moves forward to see Fjord and strikes him with her Frostbrand Sword. She backs away into the tower as Fjord gets an attack of opportunity and casts Enervation on Pike.

Beau runs into the Marine Layer and spots Fjord, then moves out of the fog towards Molly and Scanlan. She takes two strikes at Scanlan, one of which misses. Vax flies down toward Beau and attempts to shove the Life-Stealing Dagger. Molly uses his reaction to do Curse of the Eyeless making Vax miss both attacks as he amplifies it. Fjord uses his bonus action to cast Hexblade's Curse on Vax, then casts Thunderstep toward Jester and drops Marine Layer. Scanlan, uncomfortable with Beau and Molly in his personal space, decides he wants to Dimension Door away, but not before inspiring Vax. When he tries to teleport, the brand on his chest glows and not only prevents the teleport, but also causes him damage. Scanlan also playfully uses Minor Illusion so he can ask if Beau would hit a guy with glasses. She, not so playfully, responds by putting on her Goggles of Night as though they were glasses. Molly moves to the other side of Scanlan in order to flank with Beau and then swipes at Scanlan. Scanlan uses Cutting Words to make Molly miss the attack. Jester casts Dimension Door to get to the tower with the gem in it, but sees only a little imp sitting there. Jester tries to make conversation with it, but senses that the imp has eaten the gem. She casts Inflict Wounds on the imp, but even looking rough, it still flies out the window. Pike casts Heal on herself, regaining 70 hitpoints.

Break[edit | edit source]

Part II[edit | edit source]

While Scanlan attempts to persuade her not to hit him, Beau aims her lightning gloves up towards Vax, but it goes free. The next attack goes free as well. Using Flurry of Blows, she is able to land a hit, despite Vax spending a Luck point. She uses her second hit on Scanlan, and stuns him. Beau also gets an Extract Aspects on both Vax and Scanlan, learning that Scanlan is resistant to acid damage and Vax is resistant to cold damage. Vax sees that the imp has eaten the gem and sends Whisper towards it, and kills it. The gem hits the ground, Vax activates it, then flies into the air once more. Percy appears where Molly was with Beau and Scanlan, and the gem reappears at the top of the central tower. Fjord spots a chest in the cage he's next to, and frustrated with the fact that there is no door, Polymorphs into a T-Rex. Fjord moves 50 feet of movement toward the tower, knocking over the cage with the chest inside. Scanlan is stunned, but angrily speaks falteringly towards Beau. Jester casts Flame Strike at Vax, Scanlan, and Percy. Vax and Percy save, however Scanlan auto-fails and he falls unconscious. Jester then says, "Oh shit," and runs back into the tower she was previously in. Pike clicks the boots together, runs to Scanlan, and casts Cure Wounds on him.

Percy sees Beau and decides she looks like fun and takes three shots with Animus. Beau deflects the first two shots, but gets hit on the third. Percy uses Action Surge to take three more. One misses, one hits, and the last shot jams the gun. Frustrated, he backs up toward the tower that Jester is in and goes up as far as he can. Beau hits Pike and stuns her. Then, with her second strike, she hits Scanlan who also becomes stunned. Using Flurry of Blows, she hits Scanlan, knocking him unconscious, once again. Vax, landing down in between Beau and Scanlan, uses Lay on Hands to heal his ally then throws a dagger towards Beau's throat. She negates more than half the damage. Vax flies back into the air. Fjord walks toward Scanlan and Pike in his T-Rex form. He takes a tail attack on Scanlan, knocking him unconscious, once again. He then takes a bite attack at Pike, and grapples her in his mouth. Scanlan instantly fails two death saves, rolling a natural 1. Jester attempts to Dominate Person on Vax, but with Scanlan's inspiration, he succeeds. She then backs up into the tower again. Pike is stunned and in Fjord's mouth.

With Animus jammed, Percy pulls out Bad News and fires at Fjord. He reloads then fires at Beau, but it misses, so he hexes her. He then moves further up the tower. On Beau's turn, as she is about to kill Scanlan, she watches a note to his daughter fall out of his pocket. Though she briefly reads the letter about father-daughter love, Beau grabs Scanlan's throat and rips it out. She runs up Fjord's back, up towards Pike and takes a strike, but misses. She slips off of Fjord and lands on the ground. Using the rest of her movement, Beau makes her way toward the central tower, also using Patient Defense. Vax flies to the top of the central tower and shoves the gem in his pocket. Fjord makes another bite attack against Pike, who comes back to 1 hitpoint with Plate of the Dawnmarytr. Fjord, with Pike still in his mouth, walks over to the nearest lava pool, dangling her above it. On Scanlan's spiritual turn, he takes off his pants and "shakes it". Jester steps out of the tower once more to look for Percy. She casts Harm on him, which he saves from. She uses her bonus action to move her duplicate out above the pit of lava, promising to catch Pike if she were to fall. Then the real Jester steps back into the hut. Pike, with one hitpoint, successfully casts Command on Fjord, saying, "Protect".

Percy uses Second Wind to regain 25 hitpoints, then fires at Beau, which she deflects. He states that he likes Beau and then walks around to the other side of the roof. Not having seen Vax take the gem, Beau runs up the side of the tower to find no gem. She uses Patient Defense again. Vax uses his bonus action to hide then privately holds an action. Fjord, seeing as the lava looks dangerous decides to move away from it. Jester's duplicate attempts to persuade him to toss Pike down to her, but with no avail. He sets Pike down, out of his mouth and moves into a protective stance in front of her. Vax, seeing that Pike is safe, throws a dagger toward Fjord. Fjord looses concentration on Polymorph and the T-Rex form drops. Jester runs out of the hut and fires Guiding Bolt at Pike, but misses. She uses her bonus action to move her duplicate closer to Pike and Fjord. Pike attempts to cast Inflict Wounds, but doesn't hit. With his attack of opportunity, Fjord strikes toward Pike, knocking her unconscious.

Percy moves back toward the front of the tower in order to take a shot at Fjord. It backfires however as the gun jams and he burns his bonus action to fix it. He fires again and then reloads. Percy goes back to other side of the tower. Beau jumps down off the tower towards Vax. Taking two swings with her staff at him, she is able to stun him. Vax is stunned. Fjord walks up to Jester's duplicate and asks for a heal. He fires two Eldritch Blasts at Pike, one hitting, causing her to fail a death save. After the duplicate casts Cure Wounds on Fjord, Jester moves it closer to Pike. The real Jester moves toward the central tower and jumps the wall. Pike fails another death saving throw on her turn. Percy takes another two shots at Fjord, then begins to head down the tower. Beau takes two strikes at Vax, stunning him once more. Fjord salutes Pike's body before sinking Star Razor into her. Fjord has a brief existential crisis before Pike's spirit rips off her clothes and she and Scanlan go dancing in the lava. Fjord moves behind the tower and casts Shield of Faith on himself. Jester moves ahead to see what Beau is doing, and casts Guiding Bolt from her duplicate at Vax.

Percy gets up on a gargoyle and tries to fix Animus, but fails with a natural 1, in which the gun breaks. He then takes Bad News out and shoots it at Jester. He then steps behind the gargoyle for cover. With no ki points left, Beau uses the Rope of Entanglement to apologetically restrain Vax. Not knowing what to do, some of the cast suggests she mock him, and so she takes out a Celebone and lights it up. Vax gets out of the rope, but can't go anywhere with Beau's Sentinel attack. Vax uses his bonus action to attempt to stab Beau, but it doesn't hit. Fjord moves around the tower in order to send three Eldritch Blasts toward Vax, two of which hit. On Scanlan's spiritual turn, he attempts to inspire Jester from beyond the grave with a poem about the Mighty Nein's upcoming victory. Jester uses her movement to get as close as she can to Vax. She attempts to cast Guiding Bolt again, but misses once more. Percy moves around the tower and shoots at Jester. The second shot misses her. Beau hits Vax once more and he goes down. She drags him over to the lava and throws him in. Fjord heals 17 hitpoints due to his Hexblade's Curse on Vax. Once Fjord can see Percy, he sends three Eldritch Blasts towards him, and all three hit. Jester moves to Vax and searches for the crystal, which she can't find. As a bonus action, she casts Mass Healing Word.

Percy takes another shot at Jester, but the gun jams again. He continues to run into the tower and runs down the hatch. Beau looks for the crystal and even with a high roll, she is unable to find it, revealing that Vax hid the gem. Beau goes toward a pocket near the tower. Vax's spirit watches as Pike and Scanlan "go at it". Fjord casts Fly with the Star Razor, and begins to fly to the top of the tower. He holds Eldritch Blast until he sees Percy. Jester casts Locate Object to find the gem, and notifies Beau that it is buried in rubble by a cage. Percy repairs his gun and continues running into the lower chamber. He hides behind the stairs for when someone comes down. Beau heads toward where Jester was going and searches for the gem, and finds it easily. Fjord angrily casts Expeditious Retreat to get to the top of the tower. He, in a rage, throws open the door and continues to fly down the stairs. Upon seeing Percy behind the stairs, he takes two swings at him. Jester walks over to the crystal and activates it. She holds it up, and Molly appears by Fjord, both equally surprised. As devils cheer and cackle, Molly opens the chest and receives a Circlet of Blasting. The Devil Host appears again, congratulating the Mighty Nein on their victory, and restoring Pike, Scanlan, and Vax to their bodies. When Beau and Jester inquire about a prize, the Host replies that maybe one day they would meet the other halves. Then each of the teams found themselves back on their timelines.

Featured characters[edit | edit source]

Vox Machina[edit | edit source]

The Mighty Nein[edit | edit source]

New[edit | edit source]

  • The Devil Host

Mentioned[edit | edit source]

Quotations[edit | edit source]

  • Fjord: We accept your challenge... of mortal combat.[1]
  • Fjord: And let it be known, we do have a Vestige among us. I don't know if you know what that is, but it's quite powerful. If you wanted to quit now, we might understand.
    Pike: I don't know what a vestige is.
    Scanlan: Nice one, Pike.
    Pike: What does that do?
    Fjord: I feel like--
    Jester: I feel like she's lying?[2]
  • Pike: (pointing at Beauregard) This one's hot!
    Beauregard: Look at that.
    Pike: Weirdly attracted for some reason.
    Beauregard: This is great.
    Scanlan: Pike!
    Pike: What?
    Scanlan: You're on our team.
    Pike: Yeah, I know. I'm just trying to, like, boost them up so that, you know, they--
    Scanlan: Reverse psychology?
    Pike: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
    Vax'ildan: Wind up the sexual tension until it snaps.
    Pike: Yes!
    Scanlan: We promise, if we win-- when we win, we won't defile your bodies.
    Beauregard: Oh?
    Scanlan: Unless you're into that sort of thing.
    Jester: Ditto, I promise I won't make it look like you guys totally were having an orgy over there.
    Scanlan: (chuckling, pointing at Jester) I like that one.
    Vax'ildan: We could just do that instead, I'm going to throw that out there.
    Fjord: You're saying Thunderdome orgy instead?
    Beauregard: Maybe we give it 60 seconds and see how this goes.
    The Devil Host: That was not the arrangement!
    Travis Willingham: (narrating) All the devils are like, "Boo!"
    Liam O'Brien: (narrating) Wait, wait, crack open that gem, let's see what we get.
    The Devil Host: Silence![3]
  • Vax'ildan: It's in the hand, Scan-man!
    Scanlan: (like Nott) That rhymes!
    Sam: Wait, why am I Nott?[4]
  • Fjord: I'm really here for your outfit right now. Maybe after this we just take the tower?
    Jester: Thanks, Fjord, I like your ass!
    Fjord: Okay.[5]
  • Laura: Oh my gosh, my husband's attacking my boyfriend, this is weird![6]
  • Beau: Oh, you one of those rich boys?
    Percy: Oh yes.[7]
  • Sam: (narrating) As I'm lying there, by the way, you see a letter to his daughter fall out of his pocket. You briefly read it.
    Travis: (laughing) You briefly read it.
    Sam: (narrating) It says-
    Travis: Four of your six seconds...
    Sam: (narrating) "I-I know I was a bad father figure to you, but- but I hope I've made amends. And I hope that all- all daughters who have... felt that same shame and pain find only joy in their life, because there's nothing- there's nothing more precious... than a daughter that needs more love."
    Marisha: (narrating) I pick up the letter, and I go: "Cool. I needed something to blot this wound."[8]
  • Fjord: You son of a bitch! Don't you run from me!
    Travis: I will use my bonus action to cast Expeditious Retreat. I'll continue to fly to the top of the tower.
    Matt: All right, so that puts you at full movement of what?
    Travis: Of 120!
    Matt: Oh yeah! You head to the hatch. The hatch isn't locked; it's closed.
    Travis: I throw open the door!
    Matt: You head down the stairs. You need to fly down, down the stairs this way. You get down to the bottom floor and turn, and Percival's right there, gun back against the stairs.
    Fjord: Oh no.
    Matt: You can close the distance.
    Marisha: (laughing) Oh no.
    Travis: Oh, I do have my action because that was just my bonus action.
    Matt: Yep.
    Travis: I will close the distance! I will swing!
    Matt: Go for it.
    Fjord: You shot me so many times!
    Travis: NATURAL 20![9]

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • The cast is dressed as Mad Max versions of their character.
  • All characters were scaled to level 15 for this battle royale.[10]
    • Because the Nein's hit point totals do not match the in-campaign totals at level 15, the Nein were likely scaled up from level 14 rather than using their in-campaign level 15 stats.
    • This suggests that the episode was filmed before they reached level 15 at the end of "Hell or High Water" (2x136). Additionally, Jester's Constitution score of 18 suggests this was filmed after "The Neverending Day" (2x125), when she received the Ioun Stone of Fortitude.
    • Generally, given that Travis still takes a 12th level in warlock, takes the Tough feat, and his 6th Eldritch Invocation is not proven to be something other than Sculptor of Flesh in-campaign, he appears to have made the same leveling choices both times. (Beau and Jester do not have leveling decisions to make between level 14 and 15.)
    • Fjord's and Jester's hit point totals, 176 and 144 respectively, are impossible leveling from level 14. Fjord's hit points should be a minimum of 178: 142 + 30 (Tough) + 4 (Constitution modifier) + 2 (minimum roll for hit points on a 1d8). Jester's hit points should be a minimum of 146: 140 + 4 (Constitution modifier) + 2 (minimum roll for hit points on a 1d8). Given the difference between the used totals and the minimum possible is 2 points, it seems likely that their hit points unintentionally calculated without rolling a hit die.
  • Both Liam and Taliesin go into this battle as previously dead characters.
    • In reference to this, Liam starts with the fact that Vax "died once but it wasn't enough" and has "come to do it again".[11]
  • Travis states that he doesn't think that Fjord has ever been hit higher with a 31 to hit from Vax.[12] He is mistaken; he was hit with a 32 by a fire giant in "The Endless Burrows" (2x50).[13]
  • The Vox Machina side debated who they thought would be the most dangerous and decided it was Jester, later changing it to Laura herself.
  • Molly claims that when he or Percy are not on the field, there is a nice little lounge with coffee waiting for them.
  • This is the tenth episode in which one player plays multiple characters (with Taliesin playing both Percy and Mollymauk), following "A Bard's Lament" (1x85), "Masquerade" (1x99), "Unfinished Business" (1x100), and "Thar Amphala" (1x101) with Sam playing Scanlan and Taryon in the first campaign; "The Search For Grog" (OSx28) and "The Search For Bob" (OSx31) with Travis playing both Grog and Bertrand Bell; and "Dalen's Closet" (OSx33), with Liam playing both Derrig and Vax'ildan, and Sam again playing both Scanlan and Taryon; and "Long May He Reign" (2x140) and "Fond Farewells" (2x141), with Taliesin playing both Caduceus and Kingsley in the second campaign.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 10:58.
  2. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 11:14.
  3. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 11:51.
  4. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 24:02.
  5. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 33:26.
  6. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 40:44.
  7. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 2:23:47.
  8. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 2:47:05.
  9. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 4:11:39.
  10. See Update #41 on the Kickstarter project page.
  11. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 3:23.
  12. "Vox Machina vs. Mighty Nein" (OSx40) at 49:19.
  13. "The Endless Burrows" (2x50) at 3:24:58.

Art: