Spelljammer My Five Favorite Things From Spelljammer: Adventures In Space

1660246790833.png
The latest Dungeons & Dragons setting is upon us. Review copies of Spelljammer: Adventures In Space hit my front door, giving me something to page through during the dog days of August. I wanted to discuss some of the things I really enjoyed in the book(s) while trying to stay spoiler free as possible. If you want to see some things before the general release on August 16th, here are five things that I really loved from this slipcase set.

The Format​

I know some folks are upset at the three book slipcase and claim that it’s a price increase without being officially called a price increase. I’ll leave that discussion for the comments, but I really like the split between player material, monsters and the adventure. It’s the first time in years I’ve felt that sense of discovery of opening up a Dungeons & Dragons boxed set and deciding what parts I want to digest first. I think there’s still space for the one book setup that’s carried this edition through the past few years, but I wouldn’t mind this approach for future settings.

I Am Immortal, I Have Inside Me Blood Of Stars​

There are a lot of player options in this set, from autognomes to the firearm-centric giff, but my favorite one is a background. The astral drifter background makes your character effectively immortal, having spent centuries on the Astral Sea which slows aging to a crawl. There’s a lot of fun to be had playing a character like this, from surprising enemies and allies to having trouble adjusting to “modern” technologies. Both backgrounds also continue a trend that might show one of the revisions in the upcoming core set: they each give out a free feat tied to the background.

The Ships​

The best part of the original boxed set were the cards that detailed the various ships that cruised Wildspace. The Astral Adventurer's Guide details 16 ships of various sizes, giving each a big two-page spread. The first page includes art depicting the ship, its stats and a little bit about any special feature or what crews prefer to sail it. The second page offers the layout in the ship and where the gravity planes are. I know there are going to be a ton of ships out once Spelljammer comes to Dungeon Master’s Guild, but I wouldn’t mind a card collection featuring the art on one side and the deck on the other.

Sail ho!​

Boo’s Astral Menagerie contains a lot of weird creatures, from murder comets to space clowns. You can see those previewed elsewhere but what caught my eye was the entry in the Astral encounters for ships. Each small crew feels like a story waiting to be told by encountering your players. Why does that ship of vampirates have a priest on board? How did that human captain get a cambion daughter? What is a renegade mind flayer arcanist doing with a ship? All of these are tight little story hooks that might get overlooked otherwise.

A Death Star​

This is technically a spoiler for Light of Xaryxis so if you want to stay fresh for your read through, stop reading now.

Last chance…

I mean, technically, it’s a vampire star, but it’s a plot device right out of the Flash Gordon serials that inspired this setting. Not to mention, the players are helping a princess battle an evil empire run by a relative. The adventure wears its inspirations on its sleeve but that’s okay. It makes for a solid selection of movies to watch the night everybody makes characters.

Spelljammer: Adventures In Space released on August 16th in regular and limited edition versions. I highly recommend the limited editions if you can afford them. Hydro74’s art style is the perfect fit for Spelljammer.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

Rob Wieland

Rob Wieland


Von Ether

Legend
Thanks for the positive input. I see a lot of negative comments about this release on these forums, but I am happy with it. Of course I never played spelljammer back in the day (to scifi I thought at the time), but I am enjoying it now!

Projects like Spelljammer are interesting to me in seeing how people start to draw the lines between genres of what's too much of this or too much of that. e.g., (IMHO) that Spelljammer is sci-fi at all vs those who consider Star Wars to be fantasy.

#nobadwrongfun and it's all subjective, but it's still interesting to see the lines drawn and the assumptions used to draw those lines.
 

dave2008

Legend
Projects like Spelljammer are interesting to me in seeing how people start to draw the lines between genres of what's too much of this or too much of that. e.g., (IMHO) that Spelljammer is sci-fi at all vs those who consider Star Wars to be fantasy.

#nobadwrongfun and it's all subjective, but it's still interesting to see the lines drawn and the assumptions used to draw those lines.
It is also interesting how we change. Like I said, I thought it was to scifi 30 years ago, not so much now.
 

Ghal Maraz

Explorer
I deeply despise the format, if just for the insane amount of useless paper and thick cardboard necessary for it. The increased cost for less (in this case, useful) pages is just the negative icing on the cake.

I love that they're revisiting old, weirder, whimsical settings, but wasted paper and higher costs are not secondary concerns at all.
 


Stormonu

Legend
The main reason I sprang for the B&G version is that I knew I would get cards with the ships on it, like the ol' 1E boxed set.

I too enjoy that they openly acknowledge Flash Gordon as an inspiration. If I run Lights, the Giff NPC will very much sound and act like Prince Vultan of the Hawkmen.

Spelljammer is one of those campaigns where you CAN choose to embrace the weird and it works, or you can run it as straight as you want - or mix the two for some light-hearted camp amidst an otherwise straight-laced game. Considering many gamer's love of Monty Python and the like, I think that is quite appropriate overall.
 


As a fan of the old spell jammer, I am happy for the revival. I have bought one alt cover and one standard box and I will not say that I am unhappy, but I am not too pleased either. The page count could have been doubled without any trouble at all. The quite is there, but the page count is clearly deficient. But the approach is nice enough for a revival. We'll have to wait for 3pp to see if the revival was worth it.
 
Last edited:

Xohar17

Explorer
Thanks for the positive input. I see a lot of negative comments about this release on these forums, but I am happy with it. Of course I never played spelljammer back in the day (to scifi I thought at the time), but I am enjoying it now!
Personally, I liked most of what is included, (except the adventure, seems very railroady and some parts of the adventure straight up dont matter to the overall conclusion), but i just wicj there was more of it, it feels very bad bones, specially the setting info.
 

jolt

Adventurer
I like the three book format fine, but I agree that 64 pages doesn't justify an hard cover; especially in this era of paper shortages. I would have been happy with softcover if it's going to sit in a slipcase most of the time anyway.

I've never liked the 'time doesn't flow in the Astral' bit. Why would anyone travel from one world to another if you can just stay in the Astral and never age (though apparently kids still grow up somehow)? It seems to me that any wizard worth his salt would go to the Astral at first chance and never leave. Why become a lich when you can just go to the Astral? I realize there's more to being a lich than just not aging but it sets up time shenanigans that I just don't care for (though I admit that's just personal taste).

Not enough content. It feels like a notch above a Starter Set, but two notches below what I expect from a "setting" book or box.
 









Hamsters on shoulders and hippos on 'jammers
Bright shiny crystals and thri-kreen with hammers
Nasty githyanki with magical rings
These are a few of my Spelljammer things

Astral helm visions and Hadozee in oodles
Firearms and spell bombs and plasmoids like noodles
Spell ships that fly with the moon on their wings
These are a few of my Spelljammer things

Giff in white jackets with blue satin sashes
Gunpowder stains on my nose and eyelashes
Astral grey clouds that appear in the spring
These are a few of my Spelljammer things

When the spell smites
When the dart stings
When I'm feeling sad
I simply remember my Spelljammer things
And then I don't feel so bad
 

Visit Our Sponsor

Latest threads

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top