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Critical Role Wiki
Critical Role Wiki
This page is about the actor. For the character from a one-shot campaign, see Matthew Mercer (character).

Matthew Mercer's catchphrase when the players defeat a challenge

Matthew Miller, known by stage name Matthew Mercer, is a voice actor, a member of the main cast of Critical Role, and the chief creative officer at Critical Role Productions LLC. He is the Dungeon Master of the main Critical Role campaigns.

He is also a member of the board of directors for the Critical Role Foundation and the creative advisor at Darrington Press LLC. He has also been the Dungeon Master for several special episodes. He also voices Sylas Briarwood and Umbrasyl in The Legend of Vox Machina as well as additional voices.

Critical Role Productions[]


In 2012, Liam O'Brien asked Matthew Mercer to run a D&D one-shot for his birthday. At the time, Matthew kept telling Liam about the D&D game he was running and often invited Liam to join. The game then became an ongoing Pathfinder campaign.

When Matt created the campaign that eventually became Critical Role, he made up his own world, Exandria, and restructured some of the game system rules to allow for more flexibility in the storyline. He has been the Dungeon Master since the beginning of the campaign in 2012.


Matt creating a battlemap

In preparation for the streamed series, Matt converted the game over from Pathfinder to Dungeons & Dragons, because Pathfinder combat is slower due to an abundance of various modifiers. D&D also has more name recognition. When converting their game, Matt had to create a custom fighter's Martial Archetype for Taliesin Jaffe's character, Percy, as the Gunslinger subclass didn't exist in 5th Edition D&D. The two of them took a full day to switch over the character and all of his stats and abilities.

Main campaigns[]

At the beginning of the series, Matt created custom battlemaps by drawing grids on paper. He eventually upgraded to three-dimensional maps, and spends time every week assembling battlemaps from the hundreds of pieces he has collected over the years. He hand-crafted some of the map elements, and has painted some minis by hand.[2]

During the show, Matt is responsible for the music, and with the new Campaign Three set, the ambient lighting.

In an open letter published a few days before the Campaign Three premiere, Matthew Mercer confirmed that he was working with cultural and sensitivity consultants "throughout the worldbuilding and presentation of Marquet" to ensure that aspects of the continent of Marquet, the main setting for the campaign, would be "lending a familiarity and celebrating aspects of those same languages and cultures without appropriating them".[3]

Player characters[]

See also: Player characters played by Matthew Mercer
Although Matt is the Dungeon Master for the main campaigns of Critical Role, he occasionally gets to be a player for one-shots and miniseries.

Games played as Game Master[]


Matthew Mercer as the Dungeon Master[art 9]

Matt's NPCs - Aviv Or

Fan art of some of Matt's NPCs, by Aviv Or.[art 10]

Tribute characters in Exandria[]

In the world of Exandria a few characters were actually named or designed by others as a direct tribute to Matt as a real person:

  • Mercer, a merchant in the Age of Arcanum that produced spell ink for the Market of Wonders. Loquatius Seelie mentioned him in his last broadcast in Avalir[4]
  • Matilda Merceria, the author of Tusk Love, a surprisingly popular smut novel[5]
  • Mercer, one of the three thugs from Deastok that helped a Kryn soldier attack Castle Lorelei. After summoning undead skeletons to fight the children of Lord Lorelei, the undead turned on their summoners, and though wounded, Mercer managed to flee, while his companions Jaffe and Ray were killed[6]
  • In The Legend of Vox Machina several background characters are designed to look very similar to Matt, usually with some distinctive element like pointy ears, a beard or an eye patch. Whenever any of them speaks or makes any sound, Matt is the one that voices him

The Legend of Vox Machina[]

While most of Matt's NPC's are voiced by other voice actors, he reprised a few of his old characters for the animated adaptation:

Other works[]

Custom D&D materials[]


Fan art of Matthew Mercer as a bard in the College of the Maestro, by NLN4.[art 22]

Matt created several custom supplementals for Dungeons & Dragons, 5th edition, some of which are available on the Dungeon Masters Guild or have been included in official Dungeons & Dragons sourcebooks:

D&D sourcebooks[]

Matt has worked as a writer and game designer on several official D&D materials.

Other actual play series[]

In addition to Critical Role, Matt served as the dungeon master for Geek & Sundry's CelebriD&D miniseries in 2017. He appeared as a player on twice on CollegeHumor's show Dimension 20: the first time as Leiland in Escape from the Bloodkeep, and the second time as Jack in Pirates of Leviathan. Brennan Lee Mulligan served as Dungeon Master for both games.

Matt also appeared as a DM or player on several other series, such as Force Grey, RealmSmith ,The Adventure Zone, and for Dimension 20's: The Ravening War.

Voice acting[]

Matt began his voice acting career with video games in the mid-2000s. He worked on several anime dubbing projects, and has lent his voice to dozens of characters in western animation. Some of Matt's well-known roles are Jotaro Kujo from Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, Levi Ackerman from Attack on Titan, Cole Cassidy in Overwatch, and Minsc the ranger in Baldur's Gate 3 (interestingly, Matt had played Minsc's hamnster companion, Boo, in a live play before).[22]

Personal life[]

ExandriaUnlimited MatthewMercer ByHeirlumePhotography

Photograph of Matthew Mercer, by Heirlume Photography.[art 23]

At a young age, Matt suffered from a stutter. His father, who also stuttered, got him a speech therapist who reduced the effects to the point that only certain words trigger it.[23] He has revealed in multiple interviews that he suffers from body dysmorphic disorder and has always struggled with his physical appearance.[24][25]

As a freshman at high school, approximately 14 years old,[26] Matt joined popular arts club, where he started playing Dungeons & Dragons.[27][28][29] Although he promptly fell in love with the game, most players at the table preferred mechanical aspects of DnD, which did not catch Matt's immediate interest. Seeing the potential and the instruments DnD provided for storytellers, he began DMing his own campaign with narrative incline.[30][31]

Before his aspiration for acting, in middle school Matthew wanted to be a chemist, and during high school, an illustrator.[32]

When Matt began pursuing acting, he discovered that there were many Matt Millers in the industry. To make his name more memorable, he decided to change it from Miller to Mercer, a family name dated three generations back.[33]

Starting with "Strangers with Candy" era in the late 90s, Matthew Mercer is a long time fan of Stephen Colbert[34] and had him on his dream DnD guest star list since July 2015.[35]

Marisha and Matt first met in a meeting for an internet sketch comedy show that never went further.[36] On October 21, 2017,[37] in between campaigns One and Two, Marisha and Matt married. They live together with their dog Omar and previously had a bird Dagon. For their third anniversary, Matt shared some video highlights from his engagement to Marisha. He created a fake escape room with the help of friends, where she had to solve puzzles and fight a monster before he proposed to her.[38]

Matt has done cosplay as a hobby for years. He even cosplayed as Pumat Sol during a convention, and again for a Twitch ad that sometimes plays during episode breaks.



Official Matt Mercer mini by WizKids

Matt by Monica M

Fan art of Matt, by Monica M. Magaña.[art 24]

  • He shares his middle name, Christopher, with Liam O'Brien.
  • In the Critical Role Major Arcana Tarot Card Set, he (as the Dungeon Master) represents XXI - The World.
  • Matt is the third known member of his family to play Dungeons & Dragons. His mother played with Darin De Paul (and he would play a continuation of his own character as a guest player in Critical Role years later).[39][40] Matt's paternal grandmother also played the game in its first edition.[41]
  • Matt's NPCs are sometimes borrowed from or inspired by his player characters from other games. Two of these characters are Grimthorne and Eskil Ryndarien. It is possible that Trent Ikithon was also at least partially inspired by Matt's first D&D Character, a Militant Wizard named Emeritus Trent.[42]
  • When asked if he could be any player character in the game, Matt has repeatedly chosen Scanlan.
  • For Matt, Allura Vysoren was the first NPC he spent a lot of time creating, and has become his avatar in Exandria, a line that goes through every campaign. The players also feel like whenever she appears, everything is going to be alright.[43] On the other hand, Artagan is the closest thing Matt has to a god self-insert.[44]
  • A miniature figure of Matt was released by WizKids in 2021 as part of the Characters of Exandria set.
  • Matt's chosen drink for his Between the Sheets interview was a Dark & Stormy.
  • Every Halloween, the cast of Critical Role dresses up in costume for one episode. Matthew has dressed up as Geralt of Rivia (2015), Victor (2016), Dante from Devil May Cry (2018), Cole Cassidy (2019), Artagan (2020), Laura Bailey (2021), Gambit (2022), and Gandalf (2023).
  • In August 2013, Matthew Mercer was running two campaigns at once. One was the group that would become Critical Role; the other one involved Taliesin Jaffe, Marisha Ray, Luis Carazo, Chloe Dykstra, Sean Manzano and Brian. Matthew and Zack Hanks co-DMed this group for two and a half years, under Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition rules, from 2010/2011 to 2013/2014.[presumed][45][46][47][48]
  • One of Matt's favorite aspects of worldbuilding is creating ruins and weird historical relics. Often he himself does not know why certain places he has created are the way they are, and he discovers and designs them in more detail over time.[49]
  • Matt has admitted that occasionally he incorporates elements into his sessions that he knows would scare or overwhelm him, to see how the players deal with them.[50]
  • Matt confirmed that Exandria was the world he had worked on and developed the most, and that he didn't expect it to grow this much. He has also stated that he would like to make his worldbuilding more collaborative.[51]
  • According to Taliesin Jaffe Matt normally takes control over the player characters once their corresponding campaign ends, since "once the campaign is over they're mine", in his own words.[52] However, it has also been stated that since the cast has known each other for so many years and they are friends, Matt never does anything that would go against the character's personality or morals, and still asks the original players for feedback or advice whenever he needs to define details about their current situation in Exandria.
  • When the Critical Role cast were asked if they would like to have anyone from Baldur's Gate 3 as a guest player, Matt initially did not want to choose one himself (since he had worked on the same project as them and was at the same event when he was asked that question). However, Amelia Tyler (the narrator's voice actor) ended up being mentioned, since she was also a critter (who later admitted to being thrilled at the possibility of playing with Critical Role in the future).[53][54]
  • Matt would also like to play with Neil Gaiman some day.[55]
  • On Talks Machina, the host Brian Wayne Foster liked to "#ThankMyGuests" with names that were either mispronounced or wordplay that sounded close to their names. Here are the names for Matthew Mercer:
  • Mike Mercer
  • Michael Mercy
  • Mike Murker
  • Mad He Cursed Her
  • Math Precursor
  • Path Traverser
  • Splat Nurser
  • Bathroom Nurser
  • Make You Cry Mercy
  • Merciless Murder
  • Back Few Nerves Hurt
  • Cast and Crew Hurt-er
  • Thank You Turnt Sir
  • Blast You Zauber
  • Ogres Smell the Worst Sir
  • Stabby Crow Voicer

External links[]


  1. Between the Sheets: Matthew Mercer
  2. The challenge of Critical Role is staying on top of the fantastical details; Polygon, Nov 18, 2020.
  3. See A Warm Welcome to Marquet and Campaign 3! on
  4. See "Fire and Ruin" (E3x04) at 3:45:05.
  5. See "Clay and Dust" (2x72) at 1:00:23.
  6. See "Liam's One Shot: The Song of the Lorelei" (Sx36) from 1:28:13 through 1:54:34.
  7. See "Blood Hunter Class" (source).
  8. See "Blood Hunter Class Details" on D&D Beyond
  9. See "Lingering Soul Class" (source).
  10. See "College of the Maestro - Bard College Option" (source).
  11. See "Gunslinger Martial Archetype for Fighters" (source).
  12. See Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 101.
  13. See Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn, p. 178.
  14. "Critical Role's Sam Riegel Spills on New Campaign, Reveals Inspiration and Subclass for New Character" (November 4, 2021) by Christian Hoffer at
  15. See "The Draw of Destiny" (3x01) at 2:00:34.
  16. CritRoleStats stated that Matt was referring to the name of Ashton's subclass in "Quick Answers 88".
  17. See Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 102.
  18. See Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 103.
  19. See Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 104.
  20. DDB Paladin Oath of the Open Sea on D&D Beyond
  21. See "Corruption rules" (source).
  23. Between the Sheets: Matthew Mercer
  24. Conversation with Matt Mercer
  25. Between the Sheets: Matthew Mercer
  26. See "Stephen Colbert's D&D Adventure with Matthew Mercer" (Sx43) at 3:50.
  27. Conversation with Matt Mercer at 40:38.
  28. In "[19]96 or [19]97" according to him. See "Critical Role Cast Answers The Web's Most Searched Questions" at 0:16:34.
  29. For a subsequent Christmas, he would eventually receive the revised AD&D 2nd Edition Dungeon Master's Guide and Monster Manual. Twitter logo Matt Mercer (@matthewmercer) on Twitter: "(...) let me share this clip my brother recently found from maaaaany years ago." (2021-12-25).
  30. Conversation with Matt Mercer at 42:02
  31. Building Your Own Campaign Setting (with Matthew Mercer) │ Adventuring Academy.
  32. Conversation with Matt Mercer at 30:38
  33. More on: Twitter and Conversation with Matt Mercer at 25:43
  34. Conversation with Matt Mercer at 53:35
  35. See "Attack on the Duergar Warcamp" (1x04) at 3:47:24.
  36. See "Critical Role Cast Answers The Web's Most Searched Questions" at 0:04:57.
  37. See Marisha's tweet a few days later.
  38. Twitter logo Matt Mercer (@matthewmercer) on Twitter: "As I celebrate my 3 years married to the perpetually inspiring @Marisha_Ray, I remember the cosmic-horror-themed fake-escape room proposal my friends helped me build so we could engineer her chance to solve puzzles, stop a cult, and murder a monstrosity." (2020-10-22).
  39. See Katsucon 2017 - Darin De Paul Q&A Panel, and Darin's tweet.
  40. See "Talks Machina #32: 'The Fear of Isolation'" (TMx32).
  41. See "Critical Role Cast Answers The Web's Most Searched Questions" at 0:16:44.
  42. See Matt's tweet.
  43. See "4-Sided Dive: Anxiety Game Gauntlet" (4SDx18) at 1:04:06.
  44. See Chatting with Matthew Mercer at 34:14.
  45. See "Ayacon 2013 - Geek Pride: The Return of Mercer" from 0:35:24 through 45:34.
  46. See also the Twitter conversation held by the players a few years later about this campaign: Twitter logo Sean Manzano (@questioner86) on Twitter: "Two rounds into an encounter with ghouls and I'm already having flashbacks." (2017-11-21).
  47. See also Luis' interview by B. Dave Walters: "One on One Shots with Luis Carazo" on
  48. The Re-Slayers (Bonus) Take w/Matthew Mercer
  49. See the Emerald City Comic Con Panel at 59:38.
  50. See "4-Sided Dive: Anxiety Game Gauntlet" (4SDx18) at 0:38:53.
  51. See Chatting with Matthew Mercer at 6:05.
  52. See "4-Sided Dive: Feat Fetishes" (4SDx21) at 1:22:00.
  53. See the Critical Role panel from London's MCM Comic Con at 1:06:30.
  54. See Amelia's tweet.
  55. See Chatting with Matthew Mercer at 41:44.


  1. Photograph of Matthew Mercer for Variety, by Robyn Von Swank (source). This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.
  2. Official portrait by Kendra Wells
  3. Official portrait by Kendra Wells
  4. Official portrait by Joana Carvalho
  5. Official portrait by Hugo Cardenas
  6. Official portrait by Hugo Cardenas
  7. Official portrait by Kent Davis
  8. Official portrait by Minttu Hynninen
  9. From Hype: Fall Programming Schedule on
  10. Fan art of some of Matt's NPCs, by Aviv Or (source). Used with permission.
  11. Official portrait by Kit Buss
  12. Official design by Titmouse. This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as use of the material under United States copyright law.
  13. Fan art by David Rodrigues
  14. Fan art by Stephen Oakley
  15. Screenshot from "The Darkness Within" (LVM1x12) by Titmouse. This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as use of the material under United States copyright law.
  16. Screenshot of "Pass Through Fire" (LVM2x05) by Titmouse. This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as use of the material under United States copyright law.
  17. Fan art by Viktor Engholm
  18. Fan art by Nikki Dawes
  19. Screenshot of Purvan Suul in "Those Who Walk Away (LoVM)" (LVM2x04) by Titmouse. This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as use of the material under United States law.
  20. Fan art by LornArt
  21. Official art by Dan Bittencourt. This page contains unofficial Fan Content permitted under the Wizards of the Coast Fan Content Policy. Not approved/endorsed by Wizards. Portions of the materials used are property of Wizards of the Coast. ©Wizards of the Coast LLC.
  22. Fan art of Matthew Mercer as a bard in the College of the Maestro, by NLN4 (source). Used with permission.
  23. Photograph of Matthew Mercer, by Heirlume Photography (source). This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.
  24. Fan art of Matt, by Monica M. Magaña (source). Used with permission.