Critical Role DM Matt Mercer has provided some early details about the Echo Knight, one of the new subclasses appearing in Explorer's Guide to Wildemount. The Echo Knight is one of at least three subclasses that will appear in Dungeons & Dragons' next publication, which is a campaign setting book for the Tal'Dorei continent of Wildemount seen in Critical Role. In a video interview posted on YouTube yesterday, Mercer spoke to D&D Beyond's Todd Kenrick about the Echo Knight. "The Echo Knight is a martial class who has come to manipulate Dunamis in a martial way," Mercer explained. Dunamis is a kind of magical energy that allows for the manipulation of time, possibility, and gravity, and is at the heart of Dunamancy, a new kind of magic that will be explored in the new book.
Although the Kryn Dynasty of Wildemount have many mages who practice Dunamancy magic, the Echo Knights are elite warriors that use that magic on the battlefield. Mercer explains in the video that Echo Knights tap into divergent timelines that wither away and die whenever a person makes a choice. While those timelines represent the paths not chosen, an Echo Knight can pull a copy of themselves from that dying timeline and use it to fight alongside them. This "echo" isn't actually the Knight, but rather a shell of what they could have been.
"Echo Knights have the ability to allocate their action between themselves or their echo," Mercer said. "They can swap spaces with it. They can use it to defend their allies. They even have the ability to send it long distances, focusing on its senses and letting it be an extending avatar of themselves. It's kind of like have a pseudo-shadow clone to go into battle alongside them."
Critical Role fans may be familiar with Echo Knights, as several have appeared fighting for the Kryn Dynasty during the current campaign. The players encountered an Echo Knight named Theron, an encounter that led to the party coming into possession of one of the Beacons that led to the discovery of dunamis. Fan art of Theron (made by Jinjidraws) can be seen below:
Explorer's Guide to Wildemount will be released on March 17, 2020.