Critical Role has released a first look at their upcoming collaboration with Dungeons & Dragons. Earlier today, Critical Role and Dungeons & Dragons announced Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, a new campaign setting book featuring the characters and factions seen on Critical Role. The new book will not only feature tons of lore about the continent of Wildemount, but also new subclasses, player options, and spells seen in the show. As part of their announcement of the book on their website, Critical Role showed off six pieces of artwork from Explorer's Guide to Wildemount that serve as both an early look at the book and a showcase of the many art styles that will appear in the book. Critical Role also confirmed that Deven Rue's fantastic maps of Wildemount will appear in Explorer's Guide to Wildemount. Keep scrolling down for a first look at some of the secrets and artwork from Explorer's Guide to Wildemount.
This is the official cover art for Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, illustrated by well-known comics artist Karl Kerschl. The cover features the Bright Queen and King Bertrand Dwendal standing between a Luxon Beacon, the fragment of an ancient god with the power to influence possibility. The Kryn Dynasty (ruled by the Bright Queen) and the Dwendalian Empire are currently at war over the Luxon Beacons, which are sacred to the Kryn Dynasty.
A dark elf mage using dunamancy, a kind of magic that affects possibility and gravity. Thanks to the Luxon Beacons, mages have discovered a type of energy called dunnamis, which seems to affect both physics and the bending of fate. We've seen several types of dunamantic spells in Critical Role, which affect everything from gravity to density. Some dunamancy spells allow for players to re-roll poor dice rolls, while others give players the ability to create an echo that can cast a single spell before vanishing.
An unknown tiefling adventurer stands in front of an undead knight, who appears to be offering up a sword. We don't know much about the context of this image, but there are several possibilities at play. Is the knight a servant of one of the Betrayer Gods who eventually were forced out of the Material Plane during the Divergence? And what of the tiefling with semi-translucent horns? Will will see more tiefling variants in the upcoming book? Also - what about the magic sword held by the Undead Knight? There's lots of cool secrets for Explorer's Guide to Wildemount to uncover, and we can't wait to get our hands on them.
This artwork is labelled as a "Stahlmast" and appears to show a gnome in a mechanical suit of armor tormenting a group of adventurers. Most likely, this weaponry comes from Hupperdook, an industrial city in the Dwendalian Empire. Hupperdook has created many advanced pieces of weaponry for the war effort, although how this machine got into the hands of a villain remains to be seen. For the record, Stahlmast is German for "Iron Tower" and could refer to either the armor itself or possibly the location of this confrontation.
The Savalir Wood is the home of Caduceus Clay and is a strange forest corrupted by an unknown entity. While the Savalir Wood was once home to a civilization of elves, they abandoned the woods due to its strange corruption. Within the woods is the ancient Blooming Grove, a burial place that was the home to Clay and his family. Clay left the Savalir Wood with the Mighty Nein to find a way to stop the wood's corruption, which has slowly eaten away at his ancestral home.
The final piece of art from Explorer's Guide to Wildemount is of the volcano Kravaraad. The mountain is home to the Underforge, an ancient forge kept by the Dust family, and was the site of one of Critical Role's most iconic moments - when Fjord rejected the influence of his kraken patron and tossed his Hexblade into the molten lava of the volcano. The mountain is surrounded by undead spirits and is part of the Flotket Alps.