Yesterday, we detailed some of Vox Machina’s main weaknesses, both individually and as a group. That felt defeatist, so in the interests of balance, here’s some of the things they’re really good at! Again, this list isn’t in any particular order and isn’t intended to be exhaustive.
- Critical Hits: In the words of Matt Mercer: “When barbarians crit, things die.” Brutal critical adds two extra weapon dice to the usual doubled damage on a crit.
- Hit Points: Grog is a tank. He has well over 200 hit points, and can halve bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage when he’s raging.
- Damage: Grog gets three attacks when frenzied, and Reckless Attack combined with the Great Weapon Master feat and his strength of 24 from the Titanstone Knuckles means he almost always hits. The Knuckles also guarantee he does does a huge amount of damage even when he doesn’t crit.
- Mobility: Grog has a high base speed of 50 feet, and his boots of feral leaping now let him move around a battlefield easier than before.
- Crowd Control: Keyleth has a ton of area-of-effect spells, and therefore has the capability to take out large numbers of enemies at once, especially now that she has the Spire of Conflux.
- Hit Points: Keyleth’s base hit points are nothing to brag about, but Wild Shape turns her into a just as much of a tank as Grog. Her elemental forms grant between 90 to 126 additional hit points on top of her usual 110, and all have resistance to non-magical bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage.
- Healing: When Pike’s not around, Keyleth is the only member of Vox Machina with access to the high-level spells Heal and Mass Cure Wounds.
- Range: To quote Taliesin, the range on Bad News is a “disgusting” 1200 feet at maximum, and the Sharpshooter feat means he doesn’t have to take attacks outside of 300 feet (Bad News’ first range increment) at disadvantage.
- Damage: As has been documented before, Percy’s max damage is obscene, even if it comes at considerable risk. He gets a minimum three attacks, and can get as many as six when he uses his action surge. With his high dexterity, he usually hits, and can easily deal just as much damage as Grog.
- Initiative Bonus: Percy can’t roll less than a 9 for initiative.
- Self-healing: If he gets into trouble, he can use Second Wind once to buy himself some extra health to get out of it.
- Healing: ALL THE HEALING. Pike has access to the most powerful healing spells in the game, like Heal and Mass Cure Wounds. At higher levels, she’ll be the only one who can cast Mass Heal.
- Resurrections: She’s only member of Vox Machina who can bring someone back from the dead guaranteed in original form.
- Goodness: Pike is a cinnamon roll: too good, too pure for this world.
- Spell Variety: Scanlan pretty much always has something for any given situation.
- Charisma: Scanlan is quite frankly terrifying in how well he lies, performs, and persuades, especially after reading his book.
- Cutting Words and Bardic Inspiration: Both of these abilities have led to some clutch saves by the gnome bard, for both himself and his party members. Cutting Words has become particularly useful after the introduction of Mythcarver, granting disadvantage on the target’s next save in addition to the usual effect.
- Surprise Rounds: The Assassin archetype means he gets an auto-crit when he hits any surprised target. That doubles all his dice, sneak attack included. Now that he’s a paladin, when he uses Divine Strike on the hit, that gets doubled, too. This leads to things like 86 points of damage with a single dagger against an ancient white dragon, or nearly killing two names on The List before Percy could get off a shot.
- Stealth: Vax has a minimum stealth roll of 25 (outside of natural 1s), thanks to Reliable Talent and Expertise. Very few creatures are going to be able to spot him if they’re not really looking.
- Mobility: Rogues in general are designed to be speedy, with Dash available as a bonus action, but Vax can additionally choose to be hasted once per day (when he hasn’t lent his boots to Vex), and has wings with a fly speed of 60 feet a round. Whisper adds to this even more, allowing him to essentially teleport across a battlefield if he so chooses.
- Armor Class: Vax’s base AC is 20 (10+Dex+Armor+Paladin Defense). When hasted, it jumps to 22, and when wielding daggers in both hands on top of that, it maxes out at 23, making him very difficult to hit. Note: He lent the Boots of Haste to Vex before they went after Throdak, so without some help from spells, his AC maxes out at 21 for this fight.
- Accuracy: Vex almost never misses. She’s hit more shots than the rest of Vox Machina by a fair margin.
- First Rounds: Vex can now also Assassinate! Combined with her +7 initiative bonus, her first attack has a good chance at being at advantage, hidden or no.
- Beastmaster: If ranged attacks are really impossible, she can release Trinket to deal damage in melee range.
- Passive Perception: She took expertise in perception when she multiclassed into rogue, which, combined with the Observant feat, puts her passive perception at 28. That’s higher than any MM-standard dragon. Vex sees all.
- Mobility: Like her brother, Vex can Dash as a bonus action, and her broom grants her a fly speed of 50 feet per round. Now that Vax has lent her the Boots of Haste, she’s just as quick as he is.
- Versatility: This is fairly well-balanced group of adventurers, as detailed above. They usually have something for any given situation, even if the situation would be really bad for someone individually.
- Magical Items: They carry far more magical items than most of their enemies, making them incredibly powerful individuals on top of all their class and racial abilities.
- Heroes’ Feast: Prior to leaving for Emon, Vox Machina dined on a Heroes’ Feast. For the next several hours, they are immune to poison and being frightened, make all Wisdom Saves at advantage, and have 17 extra hit points (not temporary-their HP maximum totals also increased).