Last night's episode of Critical Role seemingly confirmed the identity of an artifact collected by that show's protagonists during its first episode. Exandria Unlimited is a new 8-episode Dungeons & Dragons series set in the world of Critical Role. The series takes place after Critical Role's first two campaigns and was initially set in Emon, the home of Vox Machina when Critical Role began airing back in 2015. Last night's episode of Exandria Unlimited not only featured several callbacks to the first campaign, it also provided some valuable clues about a discovery made during the first episode. Obviously, spoilers for Exandria Unlimited follow.
During the first episode of Exandria Unlimited, the party collected a strange onyx circlet from a ship in the Port of Emon. The circlet was described as a thorny crown and seemed to radiate evil, to the point where some characters actually puked ichor when they came too close. Last night's episode provided more clues as to the circlet's nature, with Opal (played by Aimee Carrero) having a vision of spiders when she touched the box the circlet was placed inside. Dorian (played by Robbie Daymond) identified the circlet as a Vestige of Divergence, a powerful artifact created by the gods that actually grows in power as its awakened. This particular artifact seems tied to Lolth, who is known as the Spider Queen in Critical Role lore.
Based on the description of the artifact, the circlet is almost certainly the Circlet of Barbed Vision, the Vestige of Divergence created by Lolth. Although the Circlet has not appeared in a Critical Role campaign before, it was described in the Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Guide released by Green Ronin Publishing back in 2017. When a character wears the Circlet, their Charisma score decreases by 2 points, but they have advantage on initiative rolls and can use their reaction to add a +5 bonus to an attack roll once per long rest. Like other Vestiges, the Circlet gains abilities as its powers are awakened. During its second state, the wearer can use their attack roll bonus reaction twice per long rest and gain resistance to poison damage. When it reaches its exalted form, the wearer gains immunity to poison damage, can see invisible creatures, and gains an additional use of their attack roll bonus reaction.
So far, it doesn't seem that Lolth herself will play a major role in Exandria Unlimited, although there are still six episodes remaining in the show. The circlet seems to be affecting several members of Exandria Unlimited's party, so it will be interesting to see which character decides to eventually put it on and fall into the Spider Queen's web.
Exandria Unlimited airs every Thursday on Critical Role's Twitch and YouTube channels. The episodes are also posted every Monday both as VOD on YouTube and as audio podcasts.