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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.


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Looks like Spelljammer and/or Planescape is back on the menu!
 
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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

darjr

I crit!
Which is exactly why the United states still sees a large trade in horse-drawn carriages, because market pressures don't push for speed and safety over whatever we did first.

Oh, wait... well, we still see a lot of people arriving by boat from Europe right?

Oh wait...
No, but there are quite a lot of people driving places when they could fly or take a train. Same with trucks and cargo and that a lot of “delivery” is done via trucks and not planes. So several modes of travel all in use at the same time.
 

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Remathilis

Legend
People want D&D in space. That’s it. That’s the niche spelljammer could have filled and IMO fails completely to fill.

Spelljammer IMHO failed because the writers themselves couldn't take it seriously. It wasn't taken as planetary romance like John. Carter, or space opera like Star Wars or even exploratory or speculative work like War of the Worlds or the Time Machine. It was puns, jokes like giant space hamsters, and a lot of "Let's Park our giant flying ship in the middle of Waterdeep."

Polyhedron released a version of spelljammer for 3e called "Shadows of the Spider Moon" that was a far more serious take. It worked fine. It felt like D&D in space without the wacky jokey stuff. I really hope and future SJ material looks at that before deciding it's all giffs and scro and flying from Krynn to Oerth and back.

Make it a setting, not a meme.
 

darjr

I crit!
I don’t know about profitability (actually I do a tiny bit and it wasn’t good) but it’s my understanding that both planescape and spelljammer sold well. Planescaoe selling more.

also both existed at the same time just fine in the past and probably will in the future.

I’d like a bit more mixing of the two, for instance spelljammer ships “warping” and Sigil having a port.

but that my have to be just in my games.

life finds a way and if there are places people can go they will go. It may take some time or more money but they’ll get there. And they’ll find a way to use it for profit or safety or convenience or just because they want to.
 



Almost forgot!

Another big reason I want a spelljammer is I want to see what people do with it in DMsGuild and using the OGL and just plain third party. A common D&D in space framework I can use to pull that stuff into my game.

Oh and I want a couple few spelljammer convention Adventurers League epics too!
Yeah, I have little faith in WotC's interest in updating their settings to my satisfaction, but putting them on the DM's Guild would inspire others to do work I'd prefer. It definitely worked for Ravenloft. There are dozens of products out there I like a heck of a lot better than VRGtR.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
I'm really talking about science - i.e. an evidence based approach. You can have lots of different ideas, but without evidence "holes is a dome" is just as valid as anything else. Until you have some way to determine to determine the distance to the stars (which requires technology - i.e. telescope) "floating in an infinite void" is just as much a fantasy as the dome. Determining that stars are like the Sun also requires technology - diffraction grating.

Okay, but there was no "evidence based approach" to give them holes in the dome either. The point isn't that people had evidence, the point is what people believed and why they believed it.

The believed in free floating objects, because the stars moved. That was solid reasoning. And it was fairly correct. I don't see the point in discounting that and holding up a different non-evidence based model just because other people believed it far later in human history.

Yes, I think the point is, like Ravenloft, WotC shouldn't be afraid to make changes to the original, the original wasn't perfect.

In this case, it needs to feature the space of the popular imagination, not the space of hard science, and not the esoteric* space of the original.


*synonym for weird.

This I 100% agree with. It would be a bit... odd. To have a less scientific approach to space, but it would also allow some ridiculous things. Imagine if the sky went on forever, and powerful beings like dragons could just... fly to other planets. It would be whimsical and kind of cool.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
No, but there are quite a lot of people driving places when they could fly or take a train. Same with trucks and cargo and that a lot of “delivery” is done via trucks and not planes. So several modes of travel all in use at the same time.

True, but for different purposes. You can't take a plane down the street

I was talking about spelljammers as moving from one setting to another, and portals as moving from one setting to another.

However, it seems that wasn't the point of... either setting. So I don't see value in reigniting the discussion
 

Scribe

Hero
You know I had a thought while walking the dog.

The planets are Planes, earth is your Prime, Space is Space, and you have a nice little solar system which your Space Jets fly around in.

Create* (autocorrect is some kinda evil) your own cosmology and you are good to go.
 
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Parmandur

Book-Friend
Okay, but there was no "evidence based approach" to give them holes in the dome either. The point isn't that people had evidence, the point is what people believed and why they believed it.

The believed in free floating objects, because the stars moved. That was solid reasoning. And it was fairly correct. I don't see the point in discounting that and holding up a different non-evidence based model just because other people believed it far later in human history.



This I 100% agree with. It would be a bit... odd. To have a less scientific approach to space, but it would also allow some ridiculous things. Imagine if the sky went on forever, and powerful beings like dragons could just... fly to other planets. It would be whimsical and kind of cool.
I, for one, do not think that WotC shouldn't make changes as needed to improve a potential Spelljammer. But wildly un-scientific views of space and physics in general (leaving particular elements to the side) seem to be a feature, not a bug: D&D in Space has no more need to be scientifically accurate than D&D Underground does.

Though, humorously enough, a more scientific view of outer space does have a longer D&D pedigree. But the whimsical fantasy approach of Spelljammer seems to fit the modern brand more than Temple of the Frog or Expedition to the Barrier Peaks...
 

I, for one, do not think that WotC shouldn't make changes as needed to improve a potential Spelljammer. But wildly un-scientific views of space and physics in general (leaving particular elements to the side) seem to be a feature, not a bug: D&D in Space has no more need to be scientifically accurate than D&D Underground does.

Though, humorously enough, a more scientific view of outer space does have a longer D&D pedigree. But the whimsical fantasy approach of Spelljammer seems to fit the modern brand more than Temple of the Frog or Expedition to the Barrier Peaks...

I mean, in a game where people can throw fireballs, raise the dead, and wish things into existence, as well has have obviously un-aerodynamic dragons being able to fly with ease, it does seem a bit much to complain that the astrophysics of the game system need to be more scientifically accurate...
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
What if?

The setting of "Travelers of the Multiverse" is a Star Frontiers, Spelljammer, Planescape mash-up.

The idea is:

It is a Star Frontiers space-travel setting, flying from planet to planet, star to star, galaxy to galaxy. However, its Faster-Than-Light "warp speed" or "wormhole" takes place via the Astral Sea. Thus its destination can be any plane of being in the multiverse.

The Astral Plane is a realm of pure thought without matter. Perhaps the "Sea" is the border between the Astral Plane and the Ethereal Plane. The ether of the Ethereal Plane is energetic force (physical but lacking mass) and relates to gravity, wormholes, and the FTL speeds.

Thus the Star Frontiers space ships are Spelljammer-like gliding across the Astral Sea to any plane and world in the multiverse.

Essentially, the Astral Sea updates or replaces the Spelljammer concept of "phlogiston".
 

Maybe some elements from Star Frontiers and Star*Drive will be added to "Planejammer", at least because Star Frontiers had got very old for the current standards.

And I suspect there is a reason Hasbro doesn't want to create their own space-opera IP and it is because Star Wars to sell toys is too important and valious. Disney broke with Mattel when this launched "Ever After High", a doll line and potential rival for Disney princess. Hasbro doesn't want to launch a rival for Star Wars, at lest not yet.
 

The believed in free floating objects, because the stars moved. That was solid reasoning.
The stars did not move, that's the point. The only available evidence indicated that the position stars relative to each other was fixed. It was not possible to observe proper motion of stars until the invention of the telescope, and even then it was shockingly difficult, as they where much further away than anyone could have imagined. Given that the relative positions of stars was observably fixed, the dome hypothesis was actually a better hypothesis than a free floating hypothesis.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
I, for one, do not think that WotC shouldn't make changes as needed to improve a potential Spelljammer. But wildly un-scientific views of space and physics in general (leaving particular elements to the side) seem to be a feature, not a bug: D&D in Space has no more need to be scientifically accurate than D&D Underground does.

Though, humorously enough, a more scientific view of outer space does have a longer D&D pedigree. But the whimsical fantasy approach of Spelljammer seems to fit the modern brand more than Temple of the Frog or Expedition to the Barrier Peaks...

Perhaps, but I also just... the more scientific view of space works too. I don't think the main issue with the Phlogiston is that it was non-scientific as much as it was that it was completely outside of people's imaginations. None of us generally imagine something like that existing, so it becomes a bit too bizarre.

That's my gut feeling on it anyways.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
The stars did not move, that's the point. The only available evidence indicated that the position stars relative to each other was fixed. It was not possible to observe proper motion of stars until the invention of the telescope, and even then it was shockingly difficult, as they where much further away than anyone could have imagined. Given that the relative positions of stars was observably fixed, the dome hypothesis was actually a better hypothesis than a free floating hypothesis.

Except for the "stars" we did see moving, like mars and venus. And shooting stars.

Also, drop two paper ships into a current and their "relative position" to each other won't really change as they move along the current. They are floating in a pattern.

But honestly... why do you care so much? The "holes in the dome" theory was also possible, I'm not saying it wasn't. But it was not the dominant view across the globe. Other cultures had other, equally well supported and incidentally more accurate ideas. There isn't shame in that. I just take objection to denying that these other competing ideas existed, had existed for longer, and were quite solid theories based on very robust systems of astronomy.
 



Let's remember there are at least two crashed alien ships in official D&D modules. I bet Hasbro wants to bet for possible crossovers and even with sci-fi franchises. Then the D&D cosmology needs a right explanation about how (high-tech) interestelar space ships are possible. And this could demand a reboot of Spelljammer.

When I try to think about the future return of Spelljammer crazy ideas appear in my mind, for example a Kaladesh version of Zoids or Zords (Power rangers). I suspect Hasbro is tempted to use Spelljammer as a platatorm to promote other IPs, or different type of products.

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This is a bionoid, a Spelljammer creature. Why are you talking about that McGyver, Guyver or what his name?

d8kdstx-a9285e26-0a54-46dd-8263-3edbeddb5891.jpg

I have the strange feeling I have seen this guy in the past.

figurines-of-adorable-power-dungeons-dragons-giff.jpg
 


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