log in or register to remove this ad

 

D&D 5E Unearthed Arcana: Travelers of the Multiverse

New free content from WotC - the latest 4-page Unearthed Arcana introduces six new races: astral elf, autognome, giff, hadozee, plasmoid, and thri-kreen.


Screen Shot 2021-10-08 at 10.45.04 PM.png


Looks like Spelljammer and/or Planescape is back on the menu!
 
Last edited:

log in or register to remove this ad

Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey


log in or register to remove this ad

Actually... ignore the names a second and they line up pretty well.

Dralasites are Plasmoids
Vrusk are Thri-Kreen
Yazirian are Hazodeed
Mechanons are Autognomes

Then you have humans as humans. The only race that doesn't fit from this UA are the Astral Elves. And space elves are pretty easily added.
There's also the Syllix from Spelljammer who are basically the Sathar from Star Frontiers
 

Hatmatter

Laws of Mordenkainen, Elminster, & Fistandantilus
Hmmm. Spelljammer has some interesting ideas but this looks like this will be another setting that isn’t for me.

Thri-Kreen definitely scream Dark Sun though. I would be surprised if they aren’t folded into some kind of Darksun launch or not intentionally paving the way for a Dark Sun launch.

My issue with Spelljammer is that it seems to be transitive… the action happens somewhere else and the spelljammer element is what you do along the way. Planescape is the holiday destination, Spelljammer is the flight to get there. I don’t really see the point of Spelljammer unless it’s connected to something else.
As someone who has DMed a lot of Spelljammer, I would say it is precisely parallel to a nautically-themed game. In fact, I would not be surprised if Ghosts of Saltmarsh is a model for a Spelljammer anthology of adventures (but likely with an additional chapter or two of lore). The ocean is transitive, but there are destinations within and under it. The Spelljammer box set encourages people to make their own crystal spheres that are a destination and to have adventures set there, not to mention that the dwarves' most typical "ship" is actually a flying dungeon. So, executing a mission or adventure on such ship might be like Star Wars where the characters are trying to meet objectives while within the bowels of the Death Star.

But, a Spelljammer campaign can be like a series of Star Trek adventures or nautical adventures or anything one can imagine. Literally, the entire Material Plane is the playing field. And, of course, other multiplanar shenanigans can also occur, especially with ghost ships (or planets) that inhabit the Ethereal Plane or adventures that make use of the Feywild or Shadowfell. :)
 
Last edited:

TheSword

Legend
As someone who has DMed a lot of Spelljammer, I would say it is precisely parallel to a nautically-themed game. In fact, I would not be surprised if Ghosts of Saltmarsh is a model for a Spelljammer anthology of adventures (but likely with an additional chapter or two of lore). The ocean is transitive, but there are destinations within and under it. The Spelljammer box set encourages people to make their own crystal spheres that are a destination and to have adventures set there, not to mention that the dwarves' most typical "ship" is actually a flying dungeon. So, executing a mission or adventure on such ship might be like Star Wars where the characters are trying to meet objectives while within the bowels of the Death Star.

But, a Spelljammer campaign can be like a series of Star Trek adventures or nautical adventures or anything one can imagine. Literally, the entire Material Plane is the playing field. And, of course, other multiplanar shenanigans can also occur, especially with ghost ships (or planets) that inhabit the Ethereal Plane or adventures that make use of the Feywild or Shadowfell. :)
I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there.

It seems that Spelljammer isn’t a setting, it’s a way of joining multiple settings together. You could take the Spelljammer out and the adventure could look very similar.

Let’s be honest, how many encounters in Ghosts of Salmarsh actually take place on the ship on the way to somewhere… I’m early into the campaign but my guess is not many.

I also don’t buy a campaign setting to then have to go and make up a load of new worlds. Spelljammer suffers from the same problems as many other open ended settings. Tons of potential but with no way of harnessing is worse than no potential. I’m definitely prefer a tighter better detailed campaign setting. Probably why I’m a fan of the Sword Coast lol
 

Hmmm. Spelljammer has some interesting ideas but this looks like this will be another setting that isn’t for me.

Thri-Kreen definitely scream Dark Sun though. I would be surprised if they aren’t folded into some kind of Darksun launch or not intentionally paving the way for a Dark Sun launch.

Thri-kreen scream Spelljammer just as much as Dark Sun. They are just an integral part of one as the other.
 









TheSword

Legend
Thri-kreen scream Spelljammer just as much as Dark Sun. They are just an integral part of one as the other.
Are they really though? They both came out at about the same time but it seems to me they are far more integral to darksun being referenced in almost all Dark Sun products, I can’t think of a Dark Sun release that doesn’t include them. I’m not sure that’s the same for the other. Maybe I’m just not as familiar with Spelljammer.
 
Last edited:

We should remember most of DM aren't going to buy Spelljammer to play the official setting but their homebred space fantasy universe, maybe mixing things from lots of different titles. Spelljammer is perfect for the freakest crossovers, for example Mystic Force Power Ranger vs Zoids, or MoonDreamers (Hasbro's maho-shojo for little girls) with Bucky O'Hare, or those (forgtten) franchises by Galoob.

I remember the old TV-show "Sea Quest". (Oh my god! It was one of the first action-live productions to use CGI and now they are retro or vintage!), where most of the action was within the own submarine.

d50t2e2-dd3bf532-16a1-4b7f-86bc-61f3cb3c41ee.jpg


zOsf90c9gNS3aWyV2S4ooRUpJwrWQBr2oSquUfcoBlMxroHrFXTb8RLJQnWxb6RdlnmGpaiP7aa7=s0
 

TheSword

Legend
We should remember most of DM aren't going to buy Spelljammer to play the official setting but their homebred space fantasy universe, maybe mixing things from lots of different titles. Spelljammer is perfect for the freakest crossovers, for example Mystic Force Power Ranger vs Zoids, or MoonDreamers (Hasbro's maho-shojo for little girls) with Bucky O'Hare, or those (forgtten) franchises by Galoob.

I remember the old TV-show "Sea Quest". (Oh my god! It was one of the first action-live productions to use CGI and now they are retro or vintage!), where most of the action was within the own submarine.

d50t2e2-dd3bf532-16a1-4b7f-86bc-61f3cb3c41ee.jpg


zOsf90c9gNS3aWyV2S4ooRUpJwrWQBr2oSquUfcoBlMxroHrFXTb8RLJQnWxb6RdlnmGpaiP7aa7=s0
If they aren’t going to play the campaign setting, why do they need a campaign setting released.

Don’t get me wrong… I’m all for Last Exile homebrew. Just hope it doesn’t take priority over other treasured editions.

I’m still not convinced Spelljammer hasn’t been rendered obsolete by the 1994 onwards concepts of the multiverse. In particular portals.
 

If they aren’t going to play the campaign setting, why do they need a campaign setting released.
Magical airships.

Giving them any sort of depth is a lot of work and more homebrew than many new players will be willing to do, and not giving them depth means they can't really mean much in the narrative except as a home base.
 

Hatmatter

Laws of Mordenkainen, Elminster, & Fistandantilus
If they aren’t going to play the campaign setting, why do they need a campaign setting released.

Don’t get me wrong… I’m all for Last Exile homebrew. Just hope it doesn’t take priority over other treasured editions.

I’m still not convinced Spelljammer hasn’t been rendered obsolete by the 1994 onwards concepts of the multiverse. In particular portals.
Hi TheSword.

I understand that you are not into Spelljammer and that's fine. What, however, makes you say that the multiverse and the notion of portals were introduced with Planescape? I was around at the Gen Con when it was announced that they were going to be releasing Planescape and TSR hosted a panel of the designers to describe it. I can assure you that we had playing in a multiplaner multiverse for many, many years before Planescape. Manual of the Planes was released a few years before 2nd edition even came out. And before Manual of the Planes was released, there was information on all of the planes in PHB and DMG and in Deities and Demigods. Manual of the Planes was exciting because it provided more detailed information on the planes, not because it dramatically altered anything (apart from all the new Elemental Para-planes and other details that are a natural result of the extra attention of an entire volume dedicated to traveling the planes, of course).

The idea of a city with many portals, Sigil, seemed a little underwhelming at the time. It hardly seemed innovative. It simply seemed like a convenient idea for a faction-based setting of plane-hopping. The idea of the Lady of Pain I did like and that did seem creative. I was down with Planescape, but as someone who lived through these changes, I would say that there is nothing from Planescape that rendered Spelljammer obsolete, which is why many of us have longed to see it return.

Cheers!
 

TheSword

Legend
Hi TheSword.

I understand that you are not into Spelljammer and that's fine. What, however, makes you say that the multiverse and the notion of portals were introduced with Planescape? I was around at the Gen Con when it was announced that they were going to be releasing Planescape and TSR hosted a panel of the designers to describe it. I can assure you that we had playing in a multiplaner multiverse for many, many years before Planescape. Manual of the Planes was released a few years before 2nd edition even came out. And before Manual of the Planes was released, there was information on all of the planes in PHB and DMG and in Deities and Demigods. Manual of the Planes was exciting because it provided more detailed information on the planes, not because it dramatically altered anything (apart from all the new Elemental Para-planes and other details that are a natural result of the extra attention of an entire volume dedicated to traveling the planes, of course).

The idea of a city with many portals, Sigil, seemed a little underwhelming at the time. It hardly seemed innovative. It simply seemed like a convenient idea for a faction-based setting of plane-hopping. The idea of the Lady of Pain I did like and that did seem creative. I was down with Planescape, but as someone who lived through these changes, I would say that there is nothing from Planescape that rendered Spelljammer obsolete, which is why many of us have longed to see it return.

Cheers!
That’s cool. I amend my sentiment to say… the setting is superfluous not obsolete then. If that was from the outset because planar travel and portals already existed then so be it.

Don’t get me wrong. Magic airships are cool. Magic airships should be a thing. I just don’t get how the setting is anything more than an interlude 🤷🏻‍♂️ I’ve yet to see anything to change my mind on that.
 

That’s cool. I amend my sentiment to say… the setting is superfluous not obsolete then. If that was from the outset because planar travel and portals already existed then so be it.

Don’t get me wrong. Magic airships are cool. Magic airships should be a thing. I just don’t get how the setting is anything more than an interlude 🤷🏻‍♂️ I’ve yet to see anything to change my mind on that.
A follow-up curiosity: are there official published settings that you really liked and regularly play in? Or do you play in homebrew settings? If you use official settings, what do you like about them?

I ask because it's entirely possible it's just that Planescape doesn't appeal to you for taste reasons.

Also because I know a lot of homebrew setting dm's who only look at published settings as things to steal ideas from, which is fine, but it affects how the judge their interest in a setting. Planescapes steal-ables are pretty narrow and won't work with a lot of other settings.
 

Visit Our Sponsor

Level Up!

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top