I would like to RAGE!
Travis Willingham playing
Grog Strongjaw

Grog Strongjaw is a goliath barbarian/fighter and a member of Vox Machina. He was played by Travis Willingham.

Intro Edit

"Right, listen up. If you have ale, then you have a friend in Grog Strongjaw. A goliath of towering height and size, this barbarian has an appetite for the two great loves in his life: combat, women, and ale. Wait...

Easily the brains of the group, Grog is often consulted for his vast knowledge of shapes, colors, and shiny things. Also ale.

In his early years, armed with his two-handed great axe, Grog often enjoyed proving his might amongst the ranks of his family's wandering herd. But after coming upon an unsuspecting elderly gnome in the woods, he objected to the killing of such an innocent life. A creature of impulse, Grog felt only pity for this terrified little thing. His disobedience cost him dearly. Beaten bloody and banished by the herd leader, his uncle Kevdak, Grog was abandoned and left to die.

Exiled from his herd, it was then that the relative of the very gnome he fought to save, saved him. It was the kindness of a gnome cleric named Pike that healed Grog, bringing him back from death's edge. And they have remained close friends ever since.

Most nights, Grog can be found challenging entire taverns to wrestling matches! Or accompanying Scanlan to the nearest house where you pay for, er, lady favors. Also ale."[33]

Description Edit

Appearance Edit

Grog, being a goliath, is grey-skinned with tattoos all over his upper body and his bald head; he weighs upward of 645 pounds and stands at 8 feet, 7 inches tall. After having a phylactery removed from his body, a scar formed on his chest which remains a mark of the lingering darkness within him.

After donning the Belt of Dwarvenkind, Grog has grown a thick black beard, a feat thought to be impossible for him due to male goliaths having no body hair.

After joining the Slayer's Take, Grog has the brand of the guild on his right arm.

Dj Crumrine Grog one year break

Fan art of Grog getting the bear tattoo on his back, by DJ Crumrine.[art 1]

During Vox Machina's one-year break, Grog took the skin with the bear tattoo which he had flayed from Kevdak's chest and had it tanned. He then got an exact copy of it tattooed on his back, as a symbol that Kevdak and the events surrounding him are now behind him.

Personality Edit


Fan art of Grog Strongjaw, by Kerri Aitken.[art 2]

Jokes have been made occasionally about Grog being smarter than most barbarians when the group plays, as Travis does mathematical calculations faster than the other players. Travis sometimes jokingly calls his character "Professor Grog".

Grog's low intelligence score has proven problematic for the group in the past. On two separate occasions he has been completely incapacitated by creatures that made psychic or intelligence attacks, once when an intellect devourer's attack put Grog into a catatonic state, and the other time when a duergar, Queen Ulara, dominated his mind and kidnapped him (Travis was absent from that game).

Because of his low intelligence, Grog is illiterate and cannot read or write in any language. After being unable to read any of the runes written in Giant within the City of Brass, Grog expressed a desire to learn how to read, and asked for Pike to help him learn the Common alphabet.[34] Since then, Pike has managed to teach Grog how to read words in Common that are up to five letters long.[35]

Grog has shown himself to be rather impulsive, as seen often when he charges ahead of the group into an unknown area of a dungeon or map. He was also the only chaotic-neutral group member at the start of the campaign, and he is often more aggressive and less merciful than some of the other characters.

He does not like being bested in single combat, as seen in "Hubris" (1x17). He is willing to cheat to win, as seen when he drank a potion of Stone Giant Strength to defeat the half-orc Kern in "The Rematch" (1x23).

Biography Edit

Background Edit

Grog is a refugee barbarian, having been banished by his people. Grog is physically the strongest member of Vox Machina and often attempts to take the majority of damage due to his high armor class and constitution.

As of "The Sunken Tomb" (1x44), Grog officially puts Kashaw to shame when it comes to genital size.

Before the Stream Edit


Art of Grog being controlled by a lich along with the reanimated corpse of his father, Stonejaw, by Wendy Sullivan Green.[art 3]

Shortly after Vox Machina's adventures in Stilben, Grog left the group and traveled back to Westruun. After not hearing from him for several weeks, the rest of the party traveled there as well and met Pike Trickfoot for the first time. She told them that Grog had been acting strangely and had marched on his own through the Bramblewood Forest towards Gatshadow Mountain. Deep within the mountain, they discovered a mind-controlled Grog, the reanimated corpse of his father, Stonejaw Strongjaw, and a dying mage attempting to become a lich. The party slew the mage, but not before he embedded his phylactery into Grog's chest.[36]

While in the Frostweald, Grog entered a portal alone to retrieve an item. A nymph, named Nahla, was on the other side protecting it. Instead of attacking him, she liked what she saw. After a while, Grog returned looking quite satisfied with himself while holding the item the group needed.[37]

With the help of Eskil Ryndarien, the phylactery was successfully removed from Grog, although it left behind some lingering necromantic energy.[38]

At some point, Grog inadvertently almost killed Trinket when he hit the bear's backside with the flat side of his axe, causing Trinket to charge through a heavily trapped area of a dungeon. Vex was not amused.

Grog was the one who decided to keep one of the penises of the trolls, that his teammates shot off, as a souvenir.[39] It was later used as a distraction in an encounter.[citation needed]

Grog has previously been mentally dominated by another opponent, which caused him to turn against his group and almost kill a few of the party's members.

During a mission, Grog was fighting an umber hulk just like in "Into the Greyspine Mines" (1x02). He ended up getting confused and, in an attempt to bull rush the creature, he fell 170 feet to the cavern floor. He was knocked unconscious and almost killed by the impact.[40]

Grog and Scanlan managed to intimidate a group of hostile mages in a fighting pit when Scanlan summoned a pony, that Grog abruptly decapitated and smeared its gore on his body while screaming.

Grog was responsible for a blue dragon, Brimscythe, turning against Vox Machina when he found a treasure room and went into a "rage loot";[41] when the dragon emerged, Grog paused to acknowledge it before he continued looting the room. Grog's choice almost cost some members of Vox Machina their lives, but it also significantly increased their party funds.

Grog convinced the group that in order to find good security for their new keep, which they named Greyskull Keep, the potential guards would have to fight each other to the death.


Fan art of Grog Strongjaw, by Andrew Keller.[art 4]

On the road from Emon to Kraghammer, Grog successfully prevented a fight between a roving band of goliath barbarians, led by his uncle Kevdak's son, Zanror, and Vox Machina after he recognized his cousin. The truce was only temporary, though, and Grog left with the understanding that their next meeting would almost surely be their last—though this later turned out not to be the case.

Chapter 1 Edit

Chapter 2 Edit

Chapter 3 Edit

Chapter 4 Edit

Chapter 5 Edit

Chapter 6 Edit

Chapter 7 Edit

Relationships Edit

Keyleth Edit

Main article: Relationship between Grog and Keyleth.

Grog calls Keyleth's sabretooth tiger form "Minxie", after the two of them (Keyleth in her cat form) attempted to intimidate somebody and Keyleth pretended to be Grog's pet. Keyleth and Grog have worked together on other occasions as well, such as creating a special combo attack referred to as the "Fastball Special", where Keyleth turns into a brawny creature, like an earth elemental, in order to have enough strength to throw Grog at a large opponent.

Grog was present when Keyleth was on the brink of attacking Raishan when the dragon revealed herself in the guise of Seeker Assum and explained to her the value of patience.[42] When Keyleth, struggling with her anger at Raishan, asked Grog how he manages to keep his rage in check, he answered: "Family."[43]

Lady Kima of Vord Edit

Grog became infatuated with Lady Kima after the party freed her from a torture rack in Emberhold and she subsequently borrowed Pike's mace to bash the duergar who tortured her into "hamburger meat."

Pike Edit

Main article: Relationship between Grog and Pike.

Fan art of Grog and Pike, by Kit Buss.[art 5]

Grog and Pike are very close friends due to Grog protecting Pike's great-great-grandfather Wilhand Trickfoot, and Pike's having saved his life after his uncle Kevdak banished him from his tribe and ordered the other tribe members to beat him near to death. The two often joke when working together, and Pike will often defend Grog from jokes made by other team members. After her death and resurrection, she has become more violent and bloodthirsty, sometimes even impressing Grog.

Scanlan Edit

Main article: Relationship between Grog and Scanlan.

Grog and Scanlan Shorthalt were best friends, occasionally pursuing the same things. After he left Vox Machina though, relations between the two have been strained. Grog seems to feel that he has been replaced by the "Bardbarian".

Vax'ildan Edit

Main article: Relationship between Grog and Vax'ildan.

Grog and Vax'ildan have a rather antagonistic relationship, the two of them occasionally playing pranks on each other. Aside from that, they are close friends who have each others' backs.

Character Information Edit

Quests Edit

Grog's quest is not exactly known. However, it has been stated by Travis that he wants revenge on his uncle Kevdak for nearly killing him, which he managed to fulfill in "The Kill Box" (1x52).[44]

One of Grog's short term goals was to beat the half-orc Kern, also known as "The Hammer", who beat him in the Crucible—a quest he has since fulfilled.[45]

Notable Items Edit

Current Items Edit

Viktor Engholm - Craven Edge - Grog

Fan art of Grog with the Craven Edge, by Viktor Engholm.[art 6]

Former Items Edit

Abilities Edit

Grog has a few abilities that allow him to inflict more damage in combat and demoralize the enemy. The primal path of his rage is that of the berserker—his rage is a means to an end, in which his thrill is derived from the chaotic nature of battle. He later multiclassed into a Battle Master fighter similar to his uncle Kevdak, gaining use of Second Wind, the Great Weapon Fighting style, the ability to use Action Surge, and a variety of combat maneuvers.


Fan art of Grog Strongjaw, by David Rodrigues.[art 7]

Goliath Abilities Edit

  • Mountain Born
  • Natural Athlete
  • Powerful Build
  • Stone's Endurance

Additional Features Edit

  • Beard Growth (Belt of Dwarvenkind)
  • Darkvision (Belt of Dwarvenkind)
  • Dwarven Resilience (Belt of Dwarvenkind)
  • Elemental Resistance (Fire/Cold/Lightning) (Titanstone Knuckles)
  • Enlarge (Titanstone Knuckles)
  • Siege Damage (Titanstone Knuckles)

Feats Edit

  • Great Weapon Master (taken at level 12)[citation needed]
  • Tough[63]
  • Mobile[citation needed]
  • Mage Slayer[64]

Barbarian Abilities Edit

Class Features Edit
  • Brutal Critical (3 dice)
  • Danger Sense
  • Feral Instinct
  • Persistent Rage
  • Primal Path: Path of the Berserker
    • Frenzy
    • Intimidating Presence
    • Mindless Rage
    • Retaliation
  • Rage
  • Reckless Attack
  • Relentless Rage

Fighter Abilities Edit

Class Features Edit
  • Action Surge[65]
  • Fighting Style: Great Weapon Fighting [66]
  • Martial Archetype: Battle Master
    • Maneuvers: Trip Attack,[67] Parry,[68] and Disarming Strike[69]
    • Student of War: Smith's Tools - [70]
    • Superiority Dice (4d8)
  • Second Wind[71]

Trivia Edit

  • Grog has the highest strength score and highest constitution score of any player character thus far.
  • Grog formerly had the lowest intelligence score of any player character. However, Buddy the Ogre now possesses the lowest intelligence score with an intelligence of 5.
    • Travis often plays this aspect for comedic effect, thus giving birth to Grog's signature catchphrase: "I have an intelligence of 6, I think I know what I'm doing."
    • Occasionally Travis forgets himself and "Grog" says something clever, usually played off as a random moment of cleverness. However at least once it has resulted in Grog suffering pain and the DM assigning psychic damage for "attempting to think too hard."[72]
  • "Grog" is a term for any alcoholic beverage, originally referring to a drink made with water and rum.
    • Travis didn't have a name for his character when he arrived at their first home game, so when Matt asked him for one he made it up on the spot.[73] He cited his love of the game Monkey Island, where "Grog" is a popular pirate beverage that is 'one of the most caustic, volatile substances known to man'.
    • "Grog" itself originated from the nickname of Vice Admiral Edward Vernon (who first introduced the drink), Old Grog or Old Grogram, which itself stemmed from how Vernon wore a coat of grosgrain (also known as grogram) cloth.
  • In the Critical Role Major Arcana Tarot Card Set, he represents VIII - Strength.
  • In the 2017 video game "Mass Effect: Andromeda", there is a krogan warlord named "Strogjaw Grog". Strogjaw Grog is the leader of a refuge for exiled scavengers known as "The Flophouse" on the scorching desert moon of Elaaden.
  • In the Vox Machina Origins comics, Grog's title of "Grand Poobah de Doink of All of This and That" is erroneously written as "Grand Poobah of de Doink."
  • Interestingly, the final roll of the one-shot The Search For Grog (done by Travis as Grog) was a Natural 20; meaning that Travis ended Campaign 1 on a 'critical roll'. He would (previously) begin Campaign 2 with a Natural 20 roll.
  • Grog's design as a large, muscular man with pale skin, a bald head, facial and body tattoos, and thick black beard coincidentally gave him a resemblance to Kratos in the 2018 video game God of War. Additionally, Kratos also has the special ability to "Spartan Rage" in the game. Many Critters were quick to point out these resemblances across various social media such as Twitter and Reddit, with quite a few posts directed straight to Travis Willingham.

External Links Edit

References Edit

  1. See "Hubris" (1x17) at 42:28.
  2. See "The Rematch" (1x23) at 1:27:32.
  3. See "In the Belly of the Beast" (1x54) at 1:02:58.
  4. See "Return to Vasselheim" (1x43) at 1:27:58.
  5. See "Umbrasyl" (1x55) at 4:23:18.
  6. See "Heredity and Hats" (1x60) at 0:51:28.
  7. See "Trust" (1x70) at 2:04:25.
  8. See "A Traveler's Gamble" (1x66) at 2:39:38.
  9. See "Daring Days" (1x86).[citation needed]
  10. See "Voice of the Tempest" (1x90).[citation needed]
  11. See "Family Matters" (1x96).[citation needed]
  12. See "The Fate-Touched" (1x103) at 2:53:37.
  13. See "One Year Later..." (1x95) at 0:18:40.
  14. According to Grog himself.  See "Whispers" (1x29) at 2:10:07.
  15. Travis Willingham stated in a Q&A that Grog's alignment was chaotic neutral.  See "K'Varn Revealed" (1x10) at 3:29:42.
  16. 16.0 16.1 See D&D: Elemental Evil Player's Companion, 5th ed., p. 11.
  17. See "Skyward" (1x15) from 0:10:30 through 0:15:00.
  18. See "The Temple Showdown" (1x11) at 4:01:56.
  19. See "Best Laid Plans..." (1x50) from 0:29:50 through 0:43:16.
  20. See "Best Laid Plans..." (1x50) at 2:28:07.
  21. Grog's level 13 stats were shown on-screen.  See "In Ruins" (1x41) at 1:32:12.
  22. Grog's level 13 stats, including his increased strength, were shown on-screen.  See "Umbrasyl" (1x55) at 30:27.
  23. Grog's level 14 stats were shown on-screen.  See "A Cycle of Vengeance" (1x58) at 31:18.
  24. Grog's level 15 stats were shown on-screen.  See "Cloak and Dagger" (1x68) at 2:04:09.
  25. Grog's level 16 stats were shown on-screen.  See "Clash at Daxio" (1x77) at 33:51.
  26. Grog's level 17 stats were shown on-screen.  See "Deals in the Dark" (1x92) at 2:57:00.
  27. Grog's level 18 stats were shown onscreen.  See "Race to the Tower" (1x102) at 3:58:32.
  28. Grog's level 19 stats were shown onscreen, and Matt mentioned that his rage damage had increased.  See "Shadows of Thomara" (1x111).
  29. See "The Search for Grog" (Sx42) at 4:26:04.
  30. See "The Search For Bob" (Sx45) at 0:42:38.
  31. See "Arrival at Kraghammer" (1x01) at 0:41:22.
  32. See "Test of Pride" (1x51) at 2:13:00.
  33. See "Arrival at Kraghammer" (1x01) from 00:50 through 2:37.
  34. See "Where the Cards Fall" (1x75).[citation needed]
  35. See "One Year Later..." (1x95) at 24:57.
  36. See "The Story of Vox Machina" (Sx06) from 0:00:50 through 0:01:41.
  37. See "The Story of Vox Machina" (Sx06) at 0:03:16.
  38. See "The Story of Vox Machina" (Sx06) at 0:03:26.
  39. See "Attack on the Duergar Warcamp" (1x04) at 3:33:56.
  40. See "The Story of Vox Machina" (Sx06) from 8:53 through 9:07.
  41. See "The Story of Vox Machina" (Sx06) at 1:14:41.
  42. See "Trust" (1x70) at 0:51:25.
  43. See "The Coming Storm" (1x73).[citation needed]
  44. See "The Kill Box" (1x52) from 2:32:52 through 2:34:09.
  45. See "The Rematch" (1x23).[citation needed]
  46. See "Best Laid Plans..." (1x50) at 1:49:36.
  47. The Boots of Feral Leaping were taken from Vorugal's hoard.  See "The Elephant in the Room" (1x72) at 1:31:37.
  48. See "Vecna, the Ascended" (1x114).[citation needed]
  49. See "The Chapter Closes" (1x115) at 1:04:40.
  50. See "Umbrasyl" (1x55) at 4:01:33.
  51. See "Deadly Echoes" (1x82).[citation needed]
  52. The Firebrand Warhammer was acquired from the duergar general.  See "The Trick about Falling" (1x05) at 0:36:10.
  53. See "Best Laid Plans..." (1x50) at 1:04:11.
  54. See "What Lies Beneath the Surface" (1x81) at 2:28:25.
  55. See "Deadly Echoes" (1x82) at 0:18:50.
  56. Found in Thordak's lair.  See "What Lies Beneath the Surface" (1x81).[citation needed]
  57. See "The Chapter Closes" (1x115).[citation needed]
  58. Grog used the Gauntlets of Ogre Power until he acquired Craven Edge, which also requires attunement, later giving the gauntlets to Pike.  See "Into the Frostweald" (1x48) at 1:15:29.
  59. After the group banished Craven Edge to the Dread Emperor's realm, Pike returned the gauntlets to Grog in exchange for the Boots of Levitation.  See "Best Laid Plans..." (1x50) from 1:05:52 through 1:07:14.
  60. Grog again gave the gauntlets to Pike after he acquired the Titanstone Knuckles.  See "At Dawn, We Plan!" (1x53) at 2:44:20.
  61. The Javelin of Lightning was obtained from a pit in the Underdark.  See "The Temple Showdown" (1x11) at 1:14:24.
  62. Grog lost the Javelin of Lightning after throwing it at a cobalt golem in a tower above Ank'Harel.  See "A Traveler's Gamble" (1x66) at 0:35:31.
  63. According to Matthew Mercer, Grog took the Tough feat.  See "Critical Role Q&A and Battle Royale!" (Sx08) at 2:42:53.
  64. See "Vecna, the Ascended" (1x114) at 3:55:16.  Grog uses Mage Slayer to make an attack on Vecna
  65. See "Bats out of Hell" (1x93) at 1:10:13.  Grog uses his Action Surge for the first time, revealing a second level in the Fighter class.
  66. See "The Deceiver's Stand" (1x83).[citation needed]
  67. See "The Core Anvil" (1x108) at 0:47:30.  Grog uses the Trip Attack maneuver.
  68. See "The Core Anvil" (1x108) at 2:20:57.  Grog uses the Parry maneuver.
  69. See "The Core Anvil" (1x108) at 2:57:13.  Travis notes that Grog probably can't disarm the Forge Guardian, implying that his third maneuver is Disarming Strike.
  70. See "The Endless Atheneeum" (1x106).[citation needed]  Grog gains proficiency in Smith's Tools from Ioun.
  71. See "Thordak" (1x79).[citation needed]
  72. See "Deals in the Dark" (1x92) at 0:59:32.  takes 3 psychic damage for attempting to think too hard.
  73. See "Talks Machina #1: 'Where the Cards Fall'" (TMx01) at 38:19.


  1. Fan art of Grog getting the bear tattoo on his back, by DJ Crumrine (source).  Used with permission.
  2. Fan art of Grog Strongjaw, by Kerri Aitken (source).  Used with permission.
  3. Art of Grog being controlled by a lich, along with the reanimated corpse of his father, Stonejaw, by Wendy Sullivan Green.  See "The Story of Vox Machina" (Sx06) at 0:01:31.
  4. Fan art of Grog Strongjaw, by Andrew Keller (source).  Permission needed.
  5. Fan art of Grog and Pike, by Kit Buss (source).  Permission needed.
  6. Fan art of Grog with the Craven Edge, by Viktor Engholm (source).  Used with permission.
  7. Fan art of Grog Strongjaw, by David Rodrigues (source).  Used with permission.

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