Critical Role will temporarily stop all live broadcasts due to COVID-19 concerns, starting today. The Critical Role team announced that it would end live broadcasts of its flagship Dungeons & Dragons webseries, as well as other regular weekly programming, as of Tuesday, March 17th. This means that no new episodes of Critical Role or Talks Machina, the companion talk show that airs every Tuesday. However, Critical Role will air a new episode of All Work No Play, featuring Liam O'Brien and Sam Riegel, this evening at 4 PM PT, and will air the All Work No Play season finale on March 31st at 7 PM PT. All Work No Play is a pre-recorded show that was filmed prior to social distancing and other guidelines going into effect.
"The health, safety, and well-being of our company and employees is the highest priority for us," Critical Role said in a statement. "We asked our staff to begin working from home to practice social distancing last week." Critical Role also shared a link to a COVID-19 response fund for those looking to help with relief efforts.
Critical Role did not provide a timeframe for how long they planned to stay shut down, although they recommended keeping an eye on their social media and website for the latest news.
The announcement comes the same day as the release of Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, a new campaign setting book exploring the Critical Role world of Exandria. The book provides tons of lore on the continent of Wildemount, along with new monsters, several new subclasses, and an entirely new school of magic called dunamancy. So - while Critical Role fans won't be able to watch new episodes, they can start their own adventures in Wildemount using the new sourcebook. Critical Role also has hundreds of hours of content available on YouTube and Twitch VOD. Fans can use the hiatus to catch up on either of the show's two campaigns.
Dozens of other TV shows and movies, both "live" and scripted, have shut down production due to the coronavirus. In order to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and prevent possible overloads of hospitals and medical facilities, the CDC has recommended that all gatherings of more than 10 people should be avoided.