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D&D 5E Boo Book: Spelljammer, Space, and Speculation!

Ath-kethin

Elder Thing
Slightly off-topic, but who came up with the concept of giant hamster as a space-fantasy themed creature in the first place?

Did someone’s real hamster escaped during a game, started to chew one the player’s miniature while they weren’t looking and went « ahhh! Giant hamster! » or something?

granted, D&D has plenty of giant « something », but mostly because they would look menacing at 10-foot tall. Silly has been in the game pretty much from inception too but still; giant hamster appears like an oddly specific choice of critter…

[edit] oh and yeah, to me this spells « spelljammer confirmed! »
According to the About This Product page of MC7 - Monstrous Compendium Spelljammer Appendix, the Giant Space Hamster was contributed by Roger Moore.

Which isn't a surprise, exactly, though there are a handful of other TSR staffers who would also have fit the bill.
 

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The WotC book I want most of all for 5e is Spelljammer full setting. But I could settle for a 1/3 setting, 2/3 adventure kind of book too with a focus on Realmspace - just to get it out of my system and not get disappointed after every book reveal.
 

Vaalingrade

Legend
I know it won't happen, but I'd love to see a Spelljammer more focused on the Giff and Gith vs the PC species and less Aberrations playing at Mad Max.

Weird Steampunk Space Age of Sailing adventures without these jerks showing up screaming 'REMEMBER LOVECRAFT? HE HAS TO BE EVERYWHERE!' every twenty minutes.
 

Echohawk

Shirokinukatsukami fan
According to the About This Product page of MC7 - Monstrous Compendium Spelljammer Appendix, the Giant Space Hamster was contributed by Roger Moore.
While that's true, the hamsters weren't actually Moore's idea. In Dragon #171, he writes:

"I also like hamsters and guinea pigs, from which sprang my entry for giant space hamsters in the first Spelljammer appendix for the Monstrous Compendium. Unfortunately, I’ve had a hard time finding people who like giant space hamsters as much as I do (well, Jeff Grubb likes them, but he had the original idea for them, so he doesn’t count)."

So we can blame Grubb for the idea, and Moore for turning the idea into a D&D monster.
 

embee

Lawyer by day. Rules lawyer by night.
Slightly off-topic, but who came up with the concept of giant hamster as a space-fantasy themed creature in the first place?

Did someone’s real hamster escaped during a game, started to chew one the player’s miniature while they weren’t looking and went « ahhh! Giant hamster! » or something?

granted, D&D has plenty of giant « something », but mostly because they would look menacing at 10-foot tall. Silly has been in the game pretty much from inception too but still; giant hamster appears like an oddly specific choice of critter…

[edit] oh and yeah, to me this spells « spelljammer confirmed! »

6wQ9goVZyp690X0yAa1WajzLB_S1fUcAWCLjFp2J-bs.jpg

Let me tell you about the time that Han Solo got into a fist fight with a giant lady space otter....
 



Echohawk

Shirokinukatsukami fan
I found a bit more on the origin of the giant space hamsters in the 30 Years of Adventure coffee table book:


The other iconic creature to emerge from Spelljammer was the dreaded giant space hamster. These beasts were written up in AD&D terms by Dragon magazine editor Roger Moore. For years, Jeff publicly denied any responsibility for their existence. The true story, however, is that Roger got his inspiration directly from Jeff.

"I had nothing to do with giant space hamsters. Well, very little. Okay, I started it. Jim [Holloway] came up with the Gnomish Sidewheeler ship which had these two, huge paddlewheels on the sides. There was nothing in space for the wheels to churn, so I said (a little too loudly), 'They must be giant hamster wheels.' Roger Moore heard that, inferred the giant space hamster, and things went downhill from there."
 


The fun fact is now the giant hamsters have become one of the most remembered and known elements from the line, a true icon.

Have I said anytime in the last 48 hours giant hamsters from the Wildspace are perfect to sell fluffy toys? Stranger things have been showed in Star Wars.

I admit I would like some PC races from d20 Future (Star*Drive+ Star Frontiers) to be recycled for Spelljammer.

Other point is the spelljammer/skyships are more expensive than building a palace or a stronghold. How to explain these in the hands of 1st level characters? It would be like Mad Max driving a Ferrari.
 

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
I had a sudden realization looking at the special cover of TWBtW - the displacer kitten that appears on the cover makes only a single, minor appearance. So there's no guarantee that Boo will play a significant role even if he's in the cover...

That is true, however the displacer beast with wings does provide a big hint as to the overall theme of the adventure (being in the Feywild) as opposed to the displacer beast's importance. So I could very much see this cover hinting strongly at Spelljammer, while the importance of Boo himself is fairly small.
 


Ath-kethin

Elder Thing
While that's true, the hamsters weren't actually Moore's idea. In Dragon #171, he writes:

"I also like hamsters and guinea pigs, from which sprang my entry for giant space hamsters in the first Spelljammer appendix for the Monstrous Compendium. Unfortunately, I’ve had a hard time finding people who like giant space hamsters as much as I do (well, Jeff Grubb likes them, but he had the original idea for them, so he doesn’t count)."

So we can blame Grubb for the idea, and Moore for turning the idea into a D&D monster.
I was surprised to learn the Grubb didn't write the entry in the About This Book section of MC7. Finding out it was all his idea justifies my hunch.
 


[
The fun fact is now the giant hamsters have become one of the most remembered and known elements from the line, a true icon.

Have I said anytime in the last 48 hours giant hamsters from the Wildspace are perfect to sell fluffy toys? Stranger things have been showed in Star Wars.

I admit I would like some PC races from d20 Future (Star*Drive+ Star Frontiers) to be recycled for Spelljammer.

Other point is the spelljammer/skyships are more expensive than building a palace or a stronghold. How to explain these in the hands of 1st level characters? It would be like Mad Max driving a Ferrari.


If you start in Lantan (or somewhere near Lantan and then visit Lantan later) and wait to Spelljam till your higher level, this isn't an issue.

Alternately it's not the players Spelljammer, they hire on as crew for someone else.
 

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