D&D General Monsters of Spelljammer (part 1)

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Monsters of Spelljammer (part 1)

Monsters of Spelljammer is a three part series intended to provide an overview of the many strange and unusual creatures found in the Spelljammer setting. Each entry has a picture (if the monster has one), a short description, and an indication of where to look for more details. The goal is to inspire those who may not be too familiar with the setting and provide some idea of the types of beings that might be encountered while spacefaring. This document does not provide detailed stats for any of these monsters; for those please refer back to the original source material or search for a 5th Edition conversion. Part one covers aartuk to gonnlingdaah. A list of primary sources is provided at the end of this article.​


Religious fanatics that roam space solely for the purpose of waging war, aartuk are plant creatures. They are star-shaped with a head attached to their centre point by a flexible stalk. Aartuk have thick yet flexible bark and limbs ending in suction cups. They are capable of firing pellets, or grappling opponents with their gooey tongues. They reproduce by injecting unconscious victims with a virus that turns them to jelly. Each tribe is led by a wise elder. Aartuk have a particular hatred of beholders, who destroyed their original home world. Aartuk can be found in MC7, on 1992#492, and one was featured in the adventure Wildspawn in Du71.​

Air Dragon
This form of dragon is unique to the air world of Coliar in the Realmspace system (SJR2). When the body of a dragon who has passed through the oldest stages of its life becomes too weak and decrepit to function, it has the option of transforming into a mental projection. This so-called air dragon looks like a shimmerless diamond in the shape of the beast’s former body with eyes the colour of its corpse’s scales. A newly formed air dragon can choose to sustain the husk of its old body and is effectively immortal while the body survives. It reforms if its air manifestation is destroyed, but cannot travel more than 15,000 miles from its body. Once it allows the body to wither away, the air dragon no longer has limitations on where it can go, but can be destroyed. The air dragon keeps the fear aura and all of the spell-like abilities and immunities of its previous form, but cannot make physical attacks. It can control air to move masses around at high speeds as a form of buffeting attack if it needs to.


These exceptionally intelligent, bird-like creatures are small in size, but have wingspans of up to nine feet. Solitary creatures, albari exist only to add chaos to the lives of others. They are armed with a variety of magical powers, mostly types of illusions with dream being a favourite. The motivations of an albari are fickle, but it will stick to one inscrutable goal at a time. Most intelligent races hate albari, and they don’t even taste good. Their feathers are too oily for most uses, but albari-feather pillows are a status symbol for some. Albari can be found in MC7.​


Alchemy Plant
An alchemy plant is a bush one to three feet high. If two objects touch an alchemy plant, it will randomly change one of them into the same substance as the other, but it can do this only once per day and for no more than three pounds of matter. Alchemy plants do not photosynthesize, instead converting nearby material into food. This means they grow wild almost anywhere. If attacked, or if sensing damage to other nearby plants, this bush can transform itself into a nearby substance, such as rock. The alchemy plant can be found in MC9.​


These creatures are emotional vampires, feeding on tension, excitement and fear. Allura are reptilian, but they can shape change to disguise themselves as attractive members of their victims’ race, only reverting to reptilian form if they are unable to feed for an extended period. Allura have an innate ability to detect nearby life, and can cast a variety of spells to manipulate their targets to feel the emotions they feed on. Groups of allura work together to capture entire ships’ crews. After two weeks, the crew becomes entirely drained of emotions. The allura incapacitate and abandon them, and begin looking for new targets. They are detailed in MC9.​


Humanoid predators, anadjiin are found primarily on the earth body Anadia in Realmspace (detailed in SJR2). Although they are reptilians, they have large insectoid eyes and jaws as well as a number of physiological adaptations for survival at extreme hot and cold temperatures. Armed with razor sharp claws, Anadjiin are capable hunters, but they respect ecological balance and never hunt rare or endangered species. On Anadia, they generally prey on halflings and umber hulks. They are caring mates and parents, and families will cooperate to find food.​


Ancient Mariner
These undead beings (from MC7) haunt the phlogiston, all that is left of a now long-forgotten humanoid race. Compared to humans, ancient mariners have compressed torsos and extended necks. They appear as they were when they died, usually wearing pirate garb, but are partially transparent. The chilling touch of an ancient mariner drains levels and will eventually turn a victim into a shadow under its control. Ancient mariners are also able to make inanimate objects insubstantial, although large objects, such as ships, take up to a day to convert.​


Anadian Halfling
Two groups of halflings occupy the lush, green poles of Anadia, the innermost planet in the Realmspace system (SJR2). The halflings living at the northern pole view themselves as the superior of the humanoid races, and have subjugated other humanoids into reservations bordering the planet’s equatorial wastelands. By contrast, the southern pole is occupied by constantly feuding halfling families with no central government and a low life expectancy. Anadian halflings have smaller ears and eyes than usual. They lack infravision, but are resilient to poisons and magic.​


An andeloid spore is a shimmering, fist-sized crystalline sphere often mistaken for a gem. If activated by heat or the presence of a potential host it becomes a flat, disc-shaped ooze capable of infecting a target by touch. It bonds with a host’s psyche and covers its body with a thick translucent slime. This substance then adheres to new targets which are eventually merged inextricably with the rest of the andeloid. The composite has a group personality based on its component parts. There is an upper limit on the size of an andeloid, but it can choose to digest component parts in order to replace them. The andeloid can be found in Dr159.​


The aperusa (from MC9 and CGR1) are a community of Wildspace humans with unclear origins and a penchant for trickery that leads many other races to distrust them. They are known for their brightly painted spelljamming craft and love of colourful clothing and jewellery. Aperusa are resistant to detection spells and immune to mind reading. Their bodies retain air, allowing them to survive for days in Wildspace without a fresh air supply. They are not an aggressive people but most clans have some skilled warriors (known as Blades) as well as spies (the Umbra).​


Although they are very rare, some liches are good. Archliches are created when a powerful good spellcaster takes steps to transform into an undead lich, while deliberately retaining their good alignment. Archliches usually serve a cause or protect a beloved place or person. They resemble ordinary liches, but are immune to turning and can instead repel other undead. Archliches are able to raise skeletons and zombies to serve them. They retain their living spell casting abilities, and may choose nine known spells which will automatically regenerate in their mind once cast. Archliches are described in SJR1 and later mentioned in MoF.​


Although they are intelligent beings, these massive amoeboids are driven by a ravenous hunger to consume any prey they can grasp and digest. Argos have one dominant central eye and hundreds of additional eyes and toothed mouths. The eyes of an argos manifest a variety of spell effects, much like a beholder. It is probably no coincidence that the two species are found in the same regions of space. An argos can wield up to three weapons or magic items, and can also engulf victims whole. First detailed in MC7, argos are also found on 1992#493 and in MM 2e.​


A distant relative of the beholder, astereaters are huge spherical creatures with a central eye and mouth. They hide in asteroid fields and eat anything that passes by. Astereaters prefer sentient species but will consume anything living. They do not have any magical powers, but can swallow most creatures whole. Although they are typically solitary, rare astereaters will have a platoon of giff servants. They are hunted by other beholders (who view them as errors of creation) and by treasure hunters interested in their stomach contents. The astereater appears in MC7 and 1992 #611.​


Asteroid Spider
The ten-legged asteroid spider received a significant size upgrade between its first appearance as a medium-sized predator in MC7 and the gargantuan ship-eating version in MCV1. The spider either hides on an asteroid, or pretends to be an asteroid and uses strands of its web to snare or grab and reel in its prey. The smaller version has a mild paralytic poison and can go into suspended animation between meals. A gargantuan asteroid spider can weave a magical web capable of suppressing a spelljamming helm and can travel through Wildspace without a ship, using its own brain as its helm.​


This malevolent sphinx stands twice as tall as a human and has a goat’s head with pale skin so tightly stretched that it resembles a skull. It has brass-coloured dragon scales, a tail, huge black bat wings and large clawed human front limbs. As well as physical attacks, the astrosphinx can also breath a cone of sleep gas. These creatures are insane, and challenge all living things they encounter with nonsensical riddles such as “What is the speed of blue?” Shunned by all intelligent species, astrosphinxes are usually the only inhabitant on the barren chunks of rock on which they dwell. The astrosphinx can be found in MC9 and in the Deadly Riddles lair in SJR8.​


First detailed in MC9, autognomes are part mechanical, part magical creations of gnomes. They are advanced automatons, capable of carrying out an array of complex orders. Many autognomes have retractable metal scoops to collect mining samples. Less common is an embedded wand of lightning to boost their combat capabilities. Autognomes can converse, usually speaking Gnomish and Common, but their thought processes tend to be inflexible and rely on narrow logic. Rogue autognomes are individuals who are no longer associated with their creators. They lead independent existences. In 5th Edition (UA:TotM) these rogue autognomes are a playable race. The adventure Gnome Droppings (Du63) features autognomes as the ejected cargo of an orbiting spelljammer craft in distress.​


Azers have appeared in the Monster Manual since 3rd Edition, so it is easy to think of them as core creatures. However, their first appearance in 2nd Edition was in SJR4 where they were introduced as residents of the immense fire world Garrash. Their civilisation on Garrash mirrors their regimented society on the Elemental Plane of Fire, where they originate. Azers resemble dwarves with brass-coloured skin and flames for hair. They are master artisans, capable of making great treasures out of gems and precious metals. Azers can also be found in MM2 1e, ALQ4, MCA1 and SS.​

Revular’s Island is a huge spelljamming asteroid operated by the syllix (Du71). When it is encountered in the adventure Wildspawn, it is pretending to be a lush, attractive island on a planet. Bassnips did not originate on Revular’s Island but are now the dominant fish in the island’s fresh water lake, providing sustenance to the syllix. Pink fish, resembling trout, bassnips have scissor-like jaws capable of snipping off small body parts and damaging armour. They eat algae and other lake plants, and are poisonous to most humanoids when eaten.​


The beholders of the Spelljammer setting are engaged in a xenophobic purity war. Each subspecies believes itself to be superior and views the elimination of all genetic variations as paramount. Since beholders are already a prominent spelljamming race, other races can be thankful that it is only the distraction of their perpetual civil war that stops the beholders from being an overwhelming presence in Wildspace. Beholders can be found in the Monster Manuals of all editions as well as in SAiS 2e and IT.​


Beholder Mage
Most beholders are unable to cast spells, because their central eyes interfere with their ability to manipulate magic. Rare beholders who are born with blind central eyes, or those who deliberately put out their own eyes, can study magic and become magi. Such beholders channel spells through their eyestalks, gradually converting them to spellstalks. Instead of memorising a spell, a beholder stores it in a spellstalk and can then use it as often as it desires. Beholders are more limited in their mastery of magic than most other races, and may learn spells from only a single school of magic. Beholder magi are detailed in SJA1 and in IT.​


Beholder Mount (Hopper, Crawler and Crusher)
The beholder variants known as directors breed at least three different types of rideable creatures (MC7). All three mounts are derived from insects and have chitinous bodies with multiple limbs. Hoppers have slashing forelimbs and two giant cricket legs capable of 30-foot hops. Crawlers have ten sets of centipede legs and a pair of spider fangs for combat. Crushers have eight legs, scorpion pincers and dangerous stings.​


Beholder Zombie
The beholder zombie in SJA1 lacks any of a normal beholder’s special attacks. It has a single chilling touch attack which inflicts damage on contact. However, it is not inherently aggressive and merely seeks assistance in repairing its cracked shell. The version presented in Du155 also lacks any of a beholder’s eye rays. In fact, it lacks eyes altogether having lost them while it was still alive. This beholder zombie is limited to a bite attack or a simple smash attack. It is also harder to kill, able to rise from the dead at least once after being reduced to 0 hit points.​


Originally bioengineered from volunteer elves during the Unhuman Wars, bionoids were ostracised by the elves after the Wars and now make their own way through the multiverse. They have two forms: a tall, thin, well-muscled humanoid form, and an insectoid, armoured form with protruding blades, which they take on when in combat. They can generate a powerful fireball as a defensive measure of last resort. Despite their appearance, bionoids are good creatures, given to peaceful contemplation. They are capable of reproduction but their offspring require host bodies. There are rare cases of large families of hundreds of bionoids living in communities. Bionoids are detailed in MC9.​


Blazozoids look like small comets with tails of blue fire. All blazozoids are the offspring of a huge, living star that refers to itself only as “I”. It believes that it is the only sentient being in the multiverse, and creates blazozoids as its emissaries to look for other sentient stars. Blazozoids do not consider material beings to be intelligent life, and generally ignore them unless they need to feed, in which case they will ram their targets and try to consume them using their intense body heat to convert matter into energy.. Blazozoids can be found in MC7 and on 1992#494.​


Bloodsac (also known as a Haagathga or a Star Vampire)
Drifting silently through space, these black-blue blobs (from MC9) are nearly invisible against the sky. They are parasitic predators travelling in packs, each one some 4’ in diameter. The smell of blood is often the only clue to their presence. Bloodsacs can sense warm blooded creatures. Once they locate a suitable spelljamming craft they try to take the inhabitants by surprise, boring numerous tiny suckers into the flesh to drain their prey’s blood and eventually also brain fluids. They reproduce by laying eggs inside drained victims. Illithids occasionally keep trained bloodsacs.​


Bosk Giant
Found on the earth planet Chislev in the Krynnspace system (SJR7), bosk giants are aggressive, territorial creatures of relatively low intelligence. They have green hair and skin, to better blend into the wet, green environments in which they prefer to dwell. They attack with clubs in melee or by spitting a stream of swamp water and gastric juices which burns and dazes a target. Despite their bellicose natures, bosk giants are vegetarians. They can sometimes be bribed with nuts, of which they are particularly fond. They dwell in villages, and sometime raid nearby human tribes for slaves.​


Buzzjewel (also known as a Gembane or a Baublebiter)
These tiny insects are native to Wildspace. They are detailed in MC9 and can be found in Clusterspace (AC). An approaching swarm of buzzjewels emits a loud droning sound and looks like a cloud of multicoloured lights. They eat gemstones or minerals; when buzzjewels die, they leave behind small ornamental gems. If a swarm is provoked, the buzzjewels will eventually attack with venomous bites. They are capable of reflecting back some spell attacks against the caster. Most mining races dislike buzzjewels, while the dohwar use caged buzzjewels as currency.​

During the Unhuman Wars, chakchaks were created when the unborn children of female hobgoblins were magically altered by shamans and witch doctors. Chakchaks are taller and more muscular than their kin. They have forearms that have been strengthened and reshaped to end in bony axe heads, grey skin flecked with black freckles and typically wear banded mail armour. Raised by soldiers to become fearsome but emotionally unstable warriors, chakchaks are as likely to turn on other hobgoblins as on enemies, and often had to be pressed into battle under the influence of a charm person. They were deemed a failed experiment because their lack of hands made them too dependent on other hobgoblins. Treated poorly by hobgoblin society, surviving chakchaks are now found in abandoned citadels and deep space locations, trapped by magic such as temporal stasis or imprisonment. Chakchaks are detailed in P55.​


Chandos Fish
These yellow to white fish are native to the water planet Chandos in Realmspace (SJR2). They are long (2 to 5 feet) and thin with a thick spiny ridge. They generate their own light using photoluminescence. Although they are omnivorous, Chandos fish prefer fresh meat, specifically flesh torn from prey that isn’t yet dead! The scent or taste of blood drives these fish into a frantic feeding frenzy during which a steadily increasing number of fish swarm and attack the target’s open wounds and sometimes even each other. Chandos fish seem to be perpetually hungry, constantly searching for new prey.​


Chattur (also known as a Space Bandit)
Small mammals with both primate and rodent characteristics, chattur are often discovered living on space faring vessels. Their presence is supposed to bring good luck, and since they are not aggressive creatures, stowaway chattur are tolerated by most crews. They eat a variety of foods and create comfortable homes using scavenged materials, usually in small family groups. Chattur have their own tongue and are intelligent enough to learn to speak other languages over time. They can be trained to use weapons and other tools. Chattur first appeared in MC7 and on 1992#612.​


Clockwork Horror
Clockwork horrors are small, insectoid automatons that roam Wildspace gathering materials to make more clockwork horrors. They exist solely to replicate. Clockwork horrors communicate using clicks and whirs or with a blinking light code that they can emit from their single crystal eye. In 2nd Edition (MC7, 1993#222, MCA4) and 3rd Edition (MM2 3e, Dr350) the horrors had slightly different abilities depending on their base metal, while in 4th Edition (Dem) and 5th Edition (MCV1) stats are provided for one standard type. The most recent version has a bite, a rotating saw attack and a lightning jolt. It can also attune itself instantly to any spelljamming helm, making it easy for a horde to take over a ship. When they die, the magic that animates horrors causes them to disintegrate.​


Although not directly related to giants, colossi are nonetheless gigantic humanoids, sixty feet tall and weighing seventy tons. They have relatively small heads and short legs, sloped back foreheads, thick bulbous features, jagged teeth and stubby fingers. Colossi are large enough to function as their own ships in Wildspace. They are usually encountered as lonely wanderers on an endless quest to find their mythical lost home of Arhoad. Good colossi are friendly and helpful to travellers, while evil ones are marauders and killers. Colossi appeared in MC7 and on 1992#495.​


Comet Steed
Detailed in SJA3, comet steeds look like pure white warhorses. They are surrounded by gleaming clouds of stardust which provide them with magic resistance and can be used defensively to blind attackers. This dust is also a component of potions of magic resistance. Comet steeds can fly at spelljamming speeds, so they are highly prized as mounts. However, they must be tamed from foals, and young comet steeds are exceptionally rare. An alternative way to obtain one is using a ring of the comet, which summons a comet steed for use as a temporary mount. They are herbivores so can sometimes be found grazing on planets.​


There are gargantuan monsters and then there are gargantuan monsters. Constellates (MC9) are living constellations, 1 to 100 million square miles in size. At full size they have a crush attack that does thousands of points of damage and a sunbolt attack that is a 1,000 mile diameter cone with a range of 500,000 miles! Fortunately, constellates generally avoid battle, an exception being if an Aperusa leader summons one to protect their clan, which they can do once per year. Constellates can shrink and move if they wish.​


These tall, solitary humanoids spend their lives pondering the questions of the multiverse. According to legend, when a contemplator discovers answers to all of the questions, the multiverse will end. Usually found on barren asteroids, their drive for knowledge makes them hostile to intelligent creatures. They can cause stone to envelop a target and will then gradually drain intelligence from the victim before eventually throwing the resulting simpleton into space. Contemplators are described in MC9. A group of them looks after the constellations in AC.​


Death Shade
These strange creatures (from SJA2) are parasites that feed off the energy released by dying creatures. In their natural form they resemble wisps of smoke with vague outlines of hooked eyes, but they are almost always encountered inside a host. When hungry, a death shade causes its host creature to go berserk, killing nearby targets so that it can absorb their energy. A death shade that absorbs sufficient energy reproduces by splitting into two. Death shades can infect any carbon-based lifeforms, and only amulets of life protection provide a defence against infestation.​


Death Tyrant (also called an Undead Beholder)
Different sorts of undead beholders have been described as “death tyrants” in D&D lore, including the floating skull version in the MM 5e, which dreams itself into undeath. The original death tyrants, found in SJR1, are mindless, rotting creatures created by evil magic. They usually serve living beholders but can also be controlled by others using magic. They are still able to use their eye powers, except those that charm, but most death tyrants have lost one or more eyestalks to injuries and the decay of death. Death tyrants are not to be confused with beholder zombies, which don’t retain any of their special abilities.​


Delphinids are the dolphins of the phlogiston. They are similar in appearance, but have trilateral symmetry with three eyes, three dorsal fins, three tail fins, and three hinged jaws. Much like dolphins, they play with ships travelling the currents of the phlogiston and have even been known to rescue sailors who have fallen overboard. They avoid monstrous and aggressive races. Delphinids somehow gain nourishment from the phlogiston, but also enjoy food thrown to them by sailors, especially fruit. Neogi consider delphinid meat to be a delicacy. They can be found in MC7.


As SAiS 2e points out, most extraplanar beings have an aversion to Wildspace and avoid it. There are exceptions to this, however, and a plan to use Clusterspace as a beachhead into the Material Plane means that demons play a significant role in The Astromundi Cluster. They plan to achieve their objective using the Darkgate, which is being assembled for the tanar’ri by a familiar race of tall, blue-skinned humanoids. AC reprints the babau, chasme and nabassu.​


Directors are the warrior caste of beholders. They specialise in mounted combat, using three clawed sensory tendrils to grip their mounts and mindlink with them. Once linked, a director and its mount act as a single creature, but the director will abandon the mount if it has to. The director’s central eye, which is smaller than that of an ordinary beholder, has the power of deflection, making it harder to target the director with physical and magical attacks. A director has only six eye stalks, but they all possess offensive powers. In a push, a director can bite with its fang-filled mouth. Directors first appeared in MC7, and later in MM 2e, IT, and LoM.​


Dizantar wear suits of heavy, spiked plate armour. Indeed, they may well be suits of heavy, spiked plate armour as any effort to open the armour reveals only smoking black ashes. A dizantar always wields an ornate magical halberd. This can mark a foe with a glowing arcane line, enabling a dizantar to pursue that foe until it leaves a crystal sphere or moves to another plane. Dizantar spend almost all of their time hunting and killing the blue-skinned mercane. They are solitary creatures, engaging with weaker beings only if they must. They are detailed in MC7.​


A race of shameless merchants from MC9, the dohwar resemble penguins who like to dress in garish, clashing clothes. Dohwar communicate with each other telepathically and a pair in mental rapport will finish each other’s sentences. They also have ESP, but must rest after using it. Dohwar organise themselves in cartels with managers and a president. Senior members of a cartel are usually accomplished spellcasters. Dohwar rely mostly on paid muscle (often giff) to fight their battles, but some dohwar are trained protectors with space swine-riding cavalry units.​


The dracons have only recently arrived in the Known Spheres, perhaps having recently made the leap into space from their home world. They are a lawful good race of dragon centaurs, with a human upper torso and arms, but the head and tail of a dragon. Dracons are civilised vegetarians who have a duelling code for resolving disputes. They are almost always encountered in family units. Dracons get on well with lizardfolk and centaurs but have trouble distinguishing between human, mind flayers and other humanoids. They can be found in SAiS 2e, CGR1 and on 1992#17.​


In its natural form, a dreamslayer (from MC9) is a winged, bipedal lizard with a featureless glowing oval for a face. Dreamslayers roam the Astral Plane looking for sleeping beings who are in Wildspace. They enter the sleeper’s dream, where they resemble a shrouded humanoid or take the form of the dreamer’s greatest fear. Dreamslayers force their victims to witness the deaths of loved ones, draining intelligence in the process. If completely drained, the dreamslayer takes control of the body and then tries to experience as many extreme emotions and physical sensations as possible until, after a few days, it is hurled back to the Astral, leaving only a corpse.​


Most spelljamming ships produce an invisible magical energy exhaust. Occasionally this energy spontaneously forms into a sentient creature called a dweomerborn. It looks like a vaguely humanoid cloud of fog, a little larger than a human. Dweomerborn feed off magic. They hunt for a spelljamming craft, lock on to the exhaust trail and use this to pull themselves aboard. There, they drain magic from spellcasters and magic items until they are sated. They can use their claws to make physical attacks if they need to. Dweomerborn are detailed in MC9.​


Eldritch Lich (also known as a Master Lich)
The eldritch lich (from MCV1) is a lich created when a Great Old One implants a Far Realm parasite inside it. The parasite causes strange tentacles to sprout from the lich’s body, and an alien mouth is visible in its torso. A powerful opponent, an eldritch lich has parasitic tentacles that can dissolve someone into a gibbering mouther, a psychic whisper and a range of spells. The eldritch lich was likely based on or inspired by the master lich from LoS, which also has its origins in “promises made to dark, extradimensional powers” and a similar desiccated appearance. Unlike its eldritch kin, a master lich has a paralysing touch, regeneration, and can animate zombies and skeletons.​


Usually encountered in the vicinity of fire-based celestial bodies, elmarin are small creatures made of fire. They range in colour from red to violet, and are about as intelligent as animals. Elmarin are not aggressive unless they are cornered, but they are curious and may accidentally ignite flammable equipment while investigating passing spelljamming ships. When an elmarin dies, there is a small chance that it will leave an ioun stone behind. Elmarin appear in SAiS. SJR2 details a type of cannon ball that summons an elmarin when it strikes.​


These undead spirits are all that remains of individuals who have died in the phlogiston. Ephemerals hunt in packs, with their touch draining health and intelligence. A humanoid killed by an ephemeral becomes one. If they are instead completely drained of intelligence, they become possessed. Ephemerals seek to possess humanoid hosts so that they can return to a crystal sphere and from there move on to the afterlife, at which point they abandon their host as a mindless husk. Ephemerals may be the remains of a race who managed to crack open their crystal sphere, allowing the phlogiston inside it. They appear in SAiS 2e.​

Although they are alive, esthetics are as much vehicles as they are monsters. Each one is created by the reigar it carries and its appearance is as unique as its symbiotic host. Esthetics hunt by driving a hollow boarding spike into animal victims to absorb nutrients. This spike can also be used to disgorge boarding parties into enemy ships they have immobilised using their jammerscream attack. Esthetics cannot travel in the phlogiston, but there are rumours of even larger reiger craft capable of transporting esthetics. Esthetics are detailed in MC7 and on 1992#613.


Examiner (also known as a Four-Eye)
These strange beholder variants appeared first in MC7 and then in MM 2e and IT. They are four-foot-diameter spheres with no central eye and a mouth on the underside of their bodies. They have four small eyes at the end of antennas and four limbs capable of gripping and using implements. Examiners are the tool wielder caste of beholder kind, but they are not very brave and usually serve other beholders as scholars and clerks. Their eyestalks have utilitarian powers, including a type of defensive spell reflection.​

Falmadaraatha (also known as a Fal)
The Fal are a race of long-lived, gigantic, hermaphroditic slugs (from MC9) who thrive on study and learning. They are peaceful, but are perfectly capable of defending themselves using a form of telekinesis or with their ferocious bites. Usually solitary, they occasionally gather in small numbers to discuss topics such as philosophy and metaphysics. Most Fal are willing to answer the questions of visitors in exchange for gifts, but they view visits more frequent than annual as impolite. Fal eat leafy green plants and are fond of wine. They can live for more than 2000 years​


Feesu are large, space-going moths that travel in swarms and glow green with a phosphorescence generated by their bodily fluids. They are considered bad luck by space travellers for two reasons: First, like all moths, they are attracted to light, which they use to recharge their phosphorescence. A cloud of brightly glowing feesu often draws unwanted attention from pirates and hostile ships. Second, feesu store air in their wings, so when a cloud of visiting feesu departs from a ship, it takes a significant amount of the ship’s air envelope with it. Feesu can be found in MC9 and on 1993#223.​


Like their terrestrial relatives, the giant eagles, firebirds have keen eyesight, and can attack with large claws and sharp hooked beaks. They also have an extreme body temperature, which gives them a body wreathed in flames and bright, blue-white eyes. These scorching flames add fire damage to any attack and ignite flammable parts of a ship. Firebirds use their fiery energy to travel through Wildspace and pick off crew from ships they encounter. They can produce a lance of flame capable of burning through hulls to get to passengers hiding inside. Firebirds are sometimes hunted for their feathers, which are ingredients for elixirs of life. They can be found in MC9.​


A firelich is created when a high-level evil mage preparing to ascend to lichdom accidentally explodes in the phlogiston. A firelich looks like a flaming comet, some eighteen feet long, with the face of the deceased mage forming the body of the comet. It screams (literally) through Wildspace, looking for things to collide with, in a desperate and futile attempt to extinguish itself. A firelich will slam into a ship and explode into a fireball, but its life-force promptly reforms into a comet. The firelich is detailed in MC9 and one can be found in a pocket prison floating through Wildspace in A Lair of Flame in SJR8.​

Flame Swallow
Found on the fire bodies of Ignia and Garrash (SJR4), flame swallows are larger, red-coloured versions of terrestrial swallows. They are surrounded by a nimbus of orange fire which extends several feet from their bodies. This ignites flammable objects on contact. Flame swallows find great joy in playing in fires, and will start them for their own amusement, making them a danger to any spelljamming craft they encounter. They likely originated on the Elemental Plane of Fire, but are now rare there, finding fiery worlds on the Material Plan more amicable. They die if forced into environments colder than boiling water. Flame swallows are not aggressive but will hunt other fire-dwelling creatures for food given a chance to do so.​


Flow Barnacle
These barnacles are the size of a human head, and are found mostly in the phlogiston. They drift in space until they find something to attach to. Once attached, flow barnacles use their parrot-like beaks to consume organic and mineral matter alike. They are nearly impossible to dislodge while still alive. Flow barnacles dislike excessive heat, light and air. They are edible in a push, and occasionally form valuable blue-white pearls. Flow barnacle shells can be used as shields and their essence is used to make sovereign glue. They are detailed in SJR1.​


Deep in the phlogiston is a rocky island built out of thousands of calcified victims of the flow. A mysterious entity known as the “Great Father” appears here from time to time to create new flowfiends from captives brought to the island by other flowfiends. The transformed beings grow up to a third taller than their original size and gain two extra arms. They can attack with each of their four clawed fists, or with their razor-sharp bites. Flowfiends have exaggerated, rippling muscles under a sickly yellow skin. When they attack spelljamming craft, which they do as often as possible, only evil beings are carried away to be transformed by the Great Father. Other travellers are beaten and bitten into a bloody pulp. Flowfiends can be found in MC9 and on 1993#278.​


Focoids are large, transparent gelatinous creatures that lurk near bright celestial bodies. Their bodies consist of three joined spheres, which they use as lenses to focus beams of energy at passing ships. Focoids are carnivorous, eating the remains of the inhabitants of ships they have destroyed. Since they are transparent, focoids are usually only visible while they are digesting their last meal. They are considered a navigational hazard and many ports offer a bounty on focoid carcasses. Focoids are solitary, but three will occasionally meet to reproduce. They can be found in MC7 and on 1992#496.​


Fractines fly through Wildspace and the Astral Sea, constantly folding and unfolding like origami. During encounters, a fractine flattens into a two-dimensional, mirrored surface about 11 feet tall. A fractine feeds off magical energy and light it syphons from its surroundings without causing harm. If it needs to, a fractine attacks by falling on a target, or by imprisoning someone inside itself. A smashed fractine breaks into two smaller fractines. If destroyed or starved of energy for more than ten days a fractine loudly shatters into nothing. The 5e fractine is in MCV1. The earlier MC7 version did a variety of different things when it fell on someone, including possibly duplicating them.​


Furnace Golem
A furnace golem is what you get if you cross a spelljamming helm with an iron golem. Found in MC7 and 1993#60, a furnace golem can consume magical items and turn them into spelljamming energy. Furnace golems are intelligent and capable of logical but slow conversation. They are versatile in battle, using improvised weapons, thrown objects, or just their powerful crushing fists. Furnace golems are warm to the touch and have glowing red eyes. They are heavy enough to shake buildings when they walk. A destroyed furnace golem releases a pool of its inner molten iron.​


Plants with butterfly wings and grasping branches, gadabouts are grown by spacefaring elves to be used as personal conveyances. In return for sunlight and water, a gadabout allows its wearer to fly through space with a supply of air and nutrition for up to sixty days. Gadabouts can live up to 25 years, and one commands a fair price on the open market (at least 2,500 gp). They can be used by humanoids as small as gnomes or as large as ogres. Gadabouts are the modified fruits of the elves’ living ships. When a gadabout is destroyed, it rapidly decomposes into a foul-smelling mess. Originally found in MC9, the gadabout was updated to 5e in MCV1.​


A gammaroid (from MC9) is an immense (2500’ diameter) snapping turtle that is easily mistaken for an asteroid. Its primary diet is gossamer nobles, but a gammeroiud will attack a spelljamming craft if it is hungry enough. It can retract its head and limbs, and spin on its central axis while moving at spelljamming speeds and sometimes uses this as an attack. Gammaroids live for millenia. Eggs are laid in the magma layers of a planet, and the hatching young cause great destruction. The shell of a dead gammaroid can fetch a fortune when sold as a spelljamming hull.​


Gargantuan Praying Mantis
These giant insects are common in the equatorial regions of the water body Karpri in Realmspace (SJR2). As big as an adult human, a praying mantis uses its camouflage to hunt prey, attacking an unsuspecting target with its two spiny front legs and a bite. It has a tough exoskeleton, and fights fearlessly until it is seriously hurt. Mantises are solitary, territorial creatures who aggressively defend their turf from others of their kind. Giant versions of the praying mantis can also be found in MM2 1e and MM 3e, but those versions are about twice as large as the one native to Realmspace.​


Giant Space Hamster
Spelljammer has a diverse cast of strange and unusual monsters, but the creature most often associated with the setting is probably the giant space hamster. Originally bred by Krynnish gnomes, it is now a staple herd animal of spacefaring communities. Giant space hamsters can consume significant amounts of food and water, and breed rapidly and frequently if left unchecked. They mutate easily, leading to many variants, including the infamous miniature giant space hamster. The giant space hamster originally appeared in MC7 and a “Rather Wild” version on 1992#716. Thanks to the Dungeon Masters Guild, fans can now buy whole books about these space rodents.​


Hippopotamus people who have a civilization based entirely on military service, the giff are ubiquitous in Wildspace. They hire themselves out as mercenaries and are experts on many weapons, particularly firearms and explosives. They are less fond of magic, viewing it with suspicion. Within giff society, every member has a military rank and subrank and faithfully follows orders from those of higher rank. Giff will never fight others of their own kind. Some giff have colourful tattoos which serves as a record of their service. Giff are detailed in many places, including SAiS 2e, 1991#281, CGR1. Du34, PO:SP, Dr339 and most recently MotM.​


Gonnlingdaah (also known as a Gonn)
Not every monster is hostile. The Gonnlingdaah are a race of singing spheres, ranging in size from 25’ to 1,000’ in diameter. They travel through Wildspace making extraordinarily beautiful music and doing what they can to preserve life. The Gonn use their music as others use magic, and they can harm or heal others with their sounds. Gonn don’t like to be disturbed too often, but they love to answer questions, tending to spend several days singing before finally getting to the answer. Gonn are detailed in MC9.​

Monsters of Spelljammer (part 2) will continue with Gossamer

1991 Trading Cards​
1992 Trading Cards​
1993 Trading Cards​
Astromundi Cluster, The​
Secrets of the Lamp​
Complete Spacefarer’s Handbook, The​
Dragon #159​
Dragon #339​
Dragon #350​
Dungeon #34​
Dungeon #63​
Dungeon #71​
Dungeon #155​
Epic Level Handbook​
I, Tyrant​
Lords of Madness: The Book of Aberrations​
Legend of Spelljammer, The​
Monstrous Compendium Spelljammer Appendix​
Monstrous Compendium Spelljammer Appendix II​
Monstrous Compendium Annual Volume One​
Monstrous Compendium Annual Volume Four​
Monstrous Compendium Volume One: Spelljammer Creatures​
MM 1e​
Monster Manual (1st Edition)​
MM 2e​
Monstrous Manual​
MM 3e​
Monster Manual (3rd or 3.5 Edition)​
MM 4e​
Monster Manual (4th Edition)​
MM 5e​
Monster Manual (5th Edition)​
MM2 1e​
Monster Manual II (1st Edition)​
MM2 3e​
Monster Manual II (3rd Edition)​
Monsters of Faerûn​
Mordenkainen Presents: Monsters of the Multiverse​
MotP 3e​
Manual of the Planes (3rd Edition)​
Polyhedron #55​
Planescape Monstrous Compendium Appendix II​
Player’s Option: Skills and Powers​
SAiS 2e​
Spelljammer: AD&D Adventures in Space​
SAiS 5e​
Spelljammer: Adventures in Space​
Skull & Crossbow​
Crystal Spheres​
Under the Dark Fist​
Heart of the Enemy​
Lost Ships​
Practical Planetology​
Space Lairs​
Goblin's Return​
Savage Species​
Unearthed Arcana: Travelers of the Multiverse​


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Is there a scheduled date for part 2? I'm a little surprised it's been more than a week.

Or is the plan to stretch these out until the 5e SJ release? That hadn't occurred to me.


Neogi are not really similar at all. When they get old, the other neogi begin biting the elderly and injecting enough venom to turn the elder into a mindless bloated host to the next generation of neogi. Other races are only food or slaves. They are a race that makes the illithid look neutral, brain-eating and all. When spacers see a neogi Deathspider they have two options, run or destroy it. They are more like skeksis from the Dark Crystal than xenomorphs.
When I first saw the Lost in Space in 1998, the transformed Dr. Smith seemed very Neogi to me...

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