D&D General Is Spelljammer really that bad?

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Okay, boiled down, people aren't going to pay for a substandard product.

They paid for Spelljammer 5e. Therefore, it is not a substandard product. As long as we are boiling things down.
I made the mistake of paying for it, too. People aren't going to continue to pay for 10 pages of setting material for $70.
Either you have one of your bizarro definitions of locations (very possible from your earlier posts) or you are doing far too much work. This is an almost obscene level of "content" if you think 305 isn't nearly enough.

Yeah, this is leaning on the obscene amount of content. YOU may need every inn and every tavern and every shop and every jail for every town and every city and every place in-between... but most of us don't. Not even close.
First, I don't accept your claim that most don't. I will accept that YOU don't. Second, it shows during game play when a DM isn't prepared.
It is literally half the setting. You are either in Wildspace (the area around various planets and such) or you are in the Astral Sea. That's it. You may visit locations in either Wildspace or the Astral Sea, but those are the two places you are. This is like claiming that while Khorvaire is IN the setting of Eberron it isn't THE setting of Eberron.... yes it is! That's where all the stuff is. Heck, wildspace is quite literally just "not the astral sea"
What are you to do when Planescape comes out? The astral, is it Planescape or is it Spelljammer or is it a default plane?
I'm really getting the sense you just don't understand what 5e Spelljammer even is.
This is probably true. I'm going by actual Spelljammer, so I clearly don't know what 5e "Spelljammer" is. 10 pages of setting material isn't nearly enough to tell me or to actually be a setting.
So you are judging the book as only providing 0.01 of what you need... but you only expect ANY setting book to give you .25 to .3 of what you need? When you don't expect a setting book to provide 75% of the content you need, it is really disingenuous to present things as though it is part of a 100% package by itself.
I've never claimed settings had to provide everything. What fun is it to DM a setting like that?
My assumptions aren't bad, your presentation is meant to confuse and obfuscate.
There you go being incredibly wrong again because you're assuming hidden meanings and intent. Stop it.
Assuming they capture anyone. Assuming that you actually kept track of which identical sailor was which (because otherwise, quantum ogre it). Assuming, assuming, assuming.
No assumption at all. I don't assume anything, but I have to be prepared just in case they do any of that.
They are a spellcaster and a navigator. So spell materials, likely arcane, and star charts to start with. Incidentally, since the ship isn't racially specific (some are, but most aren't) then the spelljammer could be anything, and I think a Plasmoid Spelljammer is going to have a different room than a Centaur Spelljammer. Oh! And the Spelljamming Helm I do believe.
What about art? Collections? A pet? Statues? And on and on and on. I don't do cookie cutter spellcasters and navigators.
So, if you want something more detailed than this... you essentially want WoTC to build 20 to 30 specialized encounters that you can just plug and play... into the section where they are giving generic information.
No. I just want more detail than, "It's a bar with a happy and knowledgeable behold running it."
And under the assumption of an allied ship, breaking into a crew mates cabin is going to end poorly more often than not. So most player's won't do it.
How long have you been playing this game? Players do all kinds of odd things like that. Maybe not all the time, but often enough that I have to be prepared.
So.. none of this is even relevant.
Riiiiiight, locations, setting history and setting lore aren't relevant to a setting. :rolleyes:
Who says they are going to go to him at all? He's no more major than any other sage in any other setting. Unless you are directing them to him, and then you are MAKING him a major recurring piece of the game.
This is false. Players ask around for people in the know all the time. Extremely often in fact. I get the feeling that your players don't engage with the settings very much, which explains a lot about why you are okay with such sparse settings.
One thing every six seconds. And since range isn't an issue, that is plenty.
Clearly you don't understand everything that has to be done in a bar setting with a crowd like that.
So, tell me, how many Star Wars Settings exist? If I buy the rights to the Star Wars Setting, which one do I get?
Which game setting did you go out and buy? Did you create your own and attach the ruleset of another game to it? Whatever you do, it's going to become your individual Star Wars setting as soon as you start to play.
Not the rights to the products, the rights to the setting.
IP rights are irrelevant to what I'm saying.
You think that every single person running Star Wars is getting a different setting.
I know for a fact that every one of their settings is different from every other by virtue of people being different and game play developing differently.
There is one Star Wars setting. Just like there is one Middle-Earth.
Apparently you don't understand RPG gameplay. That and you're confusing the IP with setting. They aren't the same. There is one Lord of the Rings written by Tolkien. That's not an RPG setting. There are thousands of Lord of the Rings settings(for RPGs) created by fans.
 

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So, why is implicit lore insufficient?
Compare the Creature Collection (2000), Relics and Rituals (2001), and Scarred Lands Gazetteer: Ghelspad (2001), by Sword and Sorcery Studios. There were scattered details of the setting through the previous books. Indications of the influence of titans and gods, their rivalry, had on the impact on the face of the land. How some specific spells were granted by specific gods because it fit their portfolio. The details to tie it together in a cohesive and comprehensive whole came with the Gazetteer. It was fabulous marketing! But, by necessity leaving an incomplete picture of the setting until the setting itself was published.

And, by their very nature, they would be somewhat random.
Only as random as the details of the Kingdoms of Thrane, Zilargo, Theocracy of the Pale, Sword Coast, &c.

What needs more detail in a real world encyclopedia? The Oceans or the Continents?
The part I'm going to visit.

Size isn't the contributing factor here.
You are making it a foundational point of your argument.

Additionally, which would you expect to have more detail on? An infinite hotel with infinite rooms and an infinite variety of guests? Or a single hotel with ten guests, twelve rooms, and a murder-mystery plot? The infinite hotel is larger, and has infinite plots in it... but you aren't going to have as much detail as you would get from the murder-mystery hotel with only 10 specific people. Because more detail isn't really needed. A few sparks to give an idea? Sure, but I've been arguing we HAVE the sparks.
If all I want is sparks of ideas, I have 6,000 books on my shelves for sparks.
If I'm buying a setting instead of building my own I expect a certain amount of work to be done for me. I'm interested in saving time and discovering inspiration. Just giving me some inspiration is insufficient- I can find that with a good book, a rainy afternoon, and a cup of hot tea.

Less is not more. It is simply less.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
For those Americans.
IMG_20221210_094540.jpg
$115 NZD. PHB is $65 iirc.

That's about 3-4 steak meals, 11 McDonald's combos, 4 dozen beers plus change, weeks groceries for a single person.

No cheap Amazon options. You can buy from Amazon but international postage rates which essentially negates Amazon's prices.

Lotta money for interior product. I could buy SJ or almost 2 normal D&D books.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
I made the mistake of paying for it, too. People aren't going to continue to pay for 10 pages of setting material for $70.

So, if a lot of people bought it. And then another set like it is released, and a lot of people buy it... then you'd be wrong. All you would be correct about is that YOU won't buy it again.

First, I don't accept your claim that most don't. I will accept that YOU don't. Second, it shows during game play when a DM isn't prepared.

Well, let's see here.

You do. I don't. My friend doesn't. My other friend doesn't. Neither does their friend. The person I game with online doesn't. The people I used to play with online didn't. The other group I used to play with had multiple DMs, and they didn't.

So, I'm currently looking at 1 vs 10, in my favor.


And, who says I'm not prepared? I am plenty prepared, I just don't need to prepare hundreds of locations. Also, so what if the players ask something and they realize they asked something I wasn't prepared for?

What are you to do when Planescape comes out? The astral, is it Planescape or is it Spelljammer or is it a default plane?

Well, first I'm going to need to see if Planescape counteracts anything in Spelljammer. Because it is entirely likely they are combining the two concepts. and in which case I'm not going to need to do anything.

This is probably true. I'm going by actual Spelljammer, so I clearly don't know what 5e "Spelljammer" is. 10 pages of setting material isn't nearly enough to tell me or to actually be a setting.

"I'm ignorant of the current version of the setting, because I'm using the REAL version of the setting from decades ago"

Really makes you wonder why you might be having a disconnect between how useful the material is, if you think of the version that hasn't been supported for three editions is the "real" version.

I've never claimed settings had to provide everything. What fun is it to DM a setting like that?

Of course you didn't. You just made a claim that it is a poor setting book, claiming it only provided 0.01 of what you need.... while hiding the fact that 0.75 of what you "need" is never in a setting book to begin with. So, you aren't accurately discussing what you need from a setting book, to make the situation look far worse than it is.

I'm so glad you just say what you mean. Because 1% out of 100% is clearly the same as 1% out of 25%.

No assumption at all. I don't assume anything, but I have to be prepared just in case they do any of that.


What about art? Collections? A pet? Statues? And on and on and on. I don't do cookie cutter spellcasters and navigators.

And yet you want the book to fill in those spaces for you. You want the book to fill in the cabins of every navigator for every ship, in an infinite multiverse. Or, maybe not all of them, maybe just 20 or 30 of them? Eberron is a great setting book right? Do they provide the details of the High Priestess's private chambers in the Church of the Silver Flame? No. No they do not.

No. I just want more detail than, "It's a bar with a happy and knowledgeable behold running it."

You may want more, but that doesn't mean it is a bad setting for not providing more.


Riiiiiight, locations, setting history and setting lore aren't relevant to a setting. :rolleyes:

You always say what you mean. That's why when I said none of the ship's crew, quarters details or captains are relevant you declared that I am saying that locations, setting history and setting lore are not relevant.

Such blinding honesty from you.

This is false. Players ask around for people in the know all the time. Extremely often in fact. I get the feeling that your players don't engage with the settings very much, which explains a lot about why you are okay with such sparse settings.

People in the know =/= this one person.

You realize if they ask about something like a location, I'm not going to recomend the beholder, but I'd recommend the guy famous for Star Charts, right? You have a question about religion, I'm not going to send you to the bar, but to the Temple District. Maybe you want to know about the ships in the docks, then I'm going to send you to the docks. If you are directing them to Luigi for all of those things, then YOU are the one making him vital, not the setting.

Clearly you don't understand everything that has to be done in a bar setting with a crowd like that.

Yes I do.

Which game setting did you go out and buy? Did you create your own and attach the ruleset of another game to it? Whatever you do, it's going to become your individual Star Wars setting as soon as you start to play.

IP rights are irrelevant to what I'm saying.

I know for a fact that every one of their settings is different from every other by virtue of people being different and game play developing differently.

Apparently you don't understand RPG gameplay. That and you're confusing the IP with setting. They aren't the same. There is one Lord of the Rings written by Tolkien. That's not an RPG setting. There are thousands of Lord of the Rings settings(for RPGs) created by fans.

And you clearly don't understand what a setting is. Which might explain why this has been such a useless conversation. And I'm not in the mood to try and educate you on the matter.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
Compare the Creature Collection (2000), Relics and Rituals (2001), and Scarred Lands Gazetteer: Ghelspad (2001), by Sword and Sorcery Studios. There were scattered details of the setting through the previous books. Indications of the influence of titans and gods, their rivalry, had on the impact on the face of the land. How some specific spells were granted by specific gods because it fit their portfolio. The details to tie it together in a cohesive and comprehensive whole came with the Gazetteer. It was fabulous marketing! But, by necessity leaving an incomplete picture of the setting until the setting itself was published.

Never seen or owned any of these. But how did you have books set in a setting without having the setting?

Only as random as the details of the Kingdoms of Thrane, Zilargo, Theocracy of the Pale, Sword Coast, &c.

Actually, no.

See, the Kingdom of Thrane effects all the other countries in Khorvaire. Same with Zilargo. You can be in Breland and feel the effects of these countries and their policies, because everything is tied together.

However, if you are on the Planet of Hadir, are you affected at all by the stuff going on on the planet of Toril? Do these two places even have contact with each other? THIS is the thing I don't think people are realizing about the Spelljammer setting in comparison. All of these locations are disparate. All of them are disconnected. Even if they are connected by spelljammers, they don't have shipping lanes or the like.

And if they do... then that is something you are adding and building. If you want to build a collection of "island nations" that are affecting each other, that's fine, but that isn't how this Spelljammer is organized.

The part I'm going to visit.

And you are going to visit the continents.

If all I want is sparks of ideas, I have 6,000 books on my shelves for sparks.
If I'm buying a setting instead of building my own I expect a certain amount of work to be done for me. I'm interested in saving time and discovering inspiration. Just giving me some inspiration is insufficient- I can find that with a good book, a rainy afternoon, and a cup of hot tea.

Less is not more. It is simply less.

Sure, less is less and more is more.

I can give you 2,000 lbs of food, and that is less than 10,000 lbs, but that doesn't mean it is an insufficient amount of food to make dinner with.

They made specific decisions with how they made this setting. All I am trying to do is point out that the setting book seems to me to be working as intended, and most of the responses telling me I am wrong start from the premise that we should have the same or very similar amounts of content as 2e had. Which seems to me to be a bad assumption. I can make a setting in less than a paragraph that would be plenty for people to run a game in that setting. They would need to come up with NPCs and such, but it would still work as a setting. And these books seem to provide plenty for the setting to work.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
For those Americans.
View attachment 269273
$115 NZD. PHB is $65 iirc.

That's about 3-4 steak meals, 11 McDonald's combos, 4 dozen beers plus change, weeks groceries for a single person.

No cheap Amazon options. You can buy from Amazon but international postage rates which essentially negates Amazon's prices.

Lotta money for interior product. I could buy SJ or almost 2 normal D&D books.

And?

I could provide you a link that would give you a setting that is completely free. And I can show you a setting worth millions of dollars. Why are we judging the quality of a setting based on how much money people spent?
 

Zardnaar

Legend
And?

I could provide you a link that would give you a setting that is completely free. And I can show you a setting worth millions of dollars. Why are we judging the quality of a setting based on how much money people spent?

Comparatively it costs more for inferior product.

Why pay more money for a watered down echo?
 

So, if a lot of people bought it. And then another set like it is released, and a lot of people buy it... then you'd be wrong. All you would be correct about is that YOU won't buy it again.

We'll see, I guess. I'm only one data point, but I pre-ordered Spelljammer and got it on release day. Given planescape is going to also use the three-book format, I've learnt from my experience with Spelljammer and I'm definitely not going to be buying that one before the reviews (and page counts...) come through.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
We'll see, I guess. I'm only one data point, but I pre-ordered Spelljammer and got it on release day. Given planescape is going to also use the three-book format, I've learnt from my experience with Spelljammer and I'm definitely not going to be buying that one before the reviews (and page counts...) come through.

Ordered mine and managed to cancel it based on what everyones saying.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
So, if a lot of people bought it. And then another set like it is released, and a lot of people buy it... then you'd be wrong. All you would be correct about is that YOU won't buy it again.
Well, no. It takes a while for production style to shift. They'll likely release one or two more crappy settings before they shift gears.
You do. I don't. My friend doesn't. My other friend doesn't. Neither does their friend. The person I game with online doesn't. The people I used to play with online didn't. The other group I used to play with had multiple DMs, and they didn't.

So, I'm currently looking at 1 vs 10, in my favor.
I just talked to 1000 guys at the beach and they all agree with me. Now it's 1001 vs. 10. Where does that leave us now? Making up numbers I imagine. Just admit that it's something you don't need that much and leave others to speak for themselves. They don't need you to be putting words in their mouths.
Really makes you wonder why you might be having a disconnect between how useful the material is, if you think of the version that hasn't been supported for three editions is the "real" version.
It's the only version. What they gave us in 5e is 10 pages of setting stuff. That's not enough to be a Spelljammer setting.
I'm so glad you just say what you mean. Because 1% out of 100% is clearly the same as 1% out of 25%.
You assumed that I wanted 100% to be included in a released setting. I said it provided .01% of what I need and that's all I said and meant. I'm not responsible for your assumptions.
You want the book to fill in the cabins of every navigator for every ship, in an infinite multiverse. Or, maybe not all of them, maybe just 20 or 30 of them? Eberron is a great setting book right? Do they provide the details of the High Priestess's private chambers in the Church of the Silver Flame? No. No they do not.
Never said or implied that. Go back and re-read.
You always say what you mean. That's why when I said none of the ship's crew, quarters details or captains are relevant you declared that I am saying that locations, setting history and setting lore are not relevant.
What?
People in the know =/= this one person.
Sure. They're going to ignore the guy who knows just about everything and go ask some other barkeep. :rolleyes:
You realize if they ask about something like a location, I'm not going to recomend the beholder, but I'd recommend the guy famous for Star Charts, right? You have a question about religion, I'm not going to send you to the bar, but to the Temple District. Maybe you want to know about the ships in the docks, then I'm going to send you to the docks. If you are directing them to Luigi for all of those things, then YOU are the one making him vital, not the setting.
Sure. Send them to a temple that knows less about their religion than the beholder. Makes me wonder, though, why you're sending them anywhere at all. It's their job to tell you where they go, not for you to send them places.
Yes I do.
Not according to the response you gave, because that response is wrong. If you truly did understand, then you'd have known that one Beholder with one eye ray couldn't possibly do it alone.
 

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