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Spelljammer What Would Your Ideal Spelljammer Book Be Like?

What I would ideally want it to be and what I would realistically expect it to be are two quite different things.

Ideally want would be another setting book in the Eberron/Ravenloft mold, with a similar format to those two.

Realistically expect would be a hybrid adventure/setting book, sort of like Saltmarsh on steroids. Granted, the adventure itself will likely have maps and descriptions of Realmspace (perhaps various chapters of the adventure takes place on each of the worlds of Realmspace, ending with the illithid and beholder dominated outer planets as the finale) and the Rock of Bral (which was supposedly left to the DM's discretion on where it was, but it was often placed in Realmspace, in the Tears of Selune, in various products; it would likely be the first stop off Toril for this hypothetical adventure), which would be doing some of the setting portion's heavy lifting. The setting part of the book would describe the basic set-up (hopefully the crystal sphere and phlogistion system, although I'm not opposed for some ships like the githyanki and illithid to also be able to travel to an otherwise definitively separated Astral); how travel works; a description of a few other crystal spheres (maybe some, perhaps including Greyspace, in some detail, most others with a quick description); important races and factions; a few charts and tables for DMs to create their own crystal spheres, planets, and systems; example ships with stats like in Saltmarsh; a quick space combat guide; and of course a bestiary. Let's say it's around a 300 page book, so roughly 150 pages could be given to each of the adventure and settings section. Honestly, because there's no reason for a lengthy gazetteer (there really aren't that many crystal spheres that have been detailed, or need to be more than briefly detailed), the setting section doesn't have to be excessively huge like for other setting guides.

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Small God of the Dozens
Ideally, I'd want to see all manner of relics, remnants and weird demi-planes suspended in an every widening gyre. I don't really care about the actual elemental planes as adventure locals I want useful Spelljamming rules, ship rules, and whatever else is necessary to play it like Firefly with longswords. Just a of bunch honest Spelljammers hauling cargo and trying to make a living. Surrounded by the weirdest and best fantasy ever, of course.


Okay, here's how I would do it. I would format it similarly to Eberron: Rising from the Last War. Let's call it "Minsc and Boo's Guide to Spelljammer".

Here's what I would do for the sections of the book.
  • Welcome to Spelljammer - Introduction into the world, explanation on the basic premise for those that aren't familiar, description of Crystal Spheres, the Phlogiston, Wildspace, and Spelljamming.
  • Chapter 1: Character Options - The races from the UA, reprinted Orcs (named Scro), possibly a few other reprinted races, some backgrounds (Pilot, Wildspace Marine, maybe reprints of the Far Traveler background from the SCAG). Maybe even a few subraces specific to space/spelljamming, like a Vehiculist Artificer, maybe a reprinted Graviturgy Wizard). New spells for creating air, finding portals on Crystal Spheres, finding your location in Wildspace/the Phlogiston, etc. Possibly even a section for Group Patrons that exist in Spelljammer, like the Elven Imperial Navy.
  • Chapter 2: The Rock of Bral Gazetteer - Map and gazetteer for the Rock of Bral, explanation on how to use it in your campaigns, listed NPCs that the party can interact with, plot hooks for adventures and side quests (like how Explorer's Guide to Wildemount does).
  • Chapter 3: Crystal Spheres and the Phlogiston - An explanation of how Crystal Spheres work, an example for inspiration/use (probably Realmspace), rules for creating your own solar systems, with tables to roll for creating planets and their moons, inhabitants, how to connect them with the different factions of the setting. and rules for how Wildspace and the Phlogiston work. Maybe a small section/sidebar about the First World.
  • Chapter 4: Adventures in Spelljammer - Guidelines for how to create adventures and campaigns in Spelljammer, how to develop villains and rivals out of the different monsters and factions, and multiple starting adventures (like Explorer's Guide to Wildemount has 4). Examples could be hijacking/stealing a Spelljamming ship (or rescuing one that was being held hostage by space pirates), an adventure where you try to save a space station of humanoids from an invasion/infestation of aberrations, go bounty hunting for a wanted space-criminal, or steal the secrets of creating Spelljamming Helms from the Arcane Giants that are the sole individuals with the knowledge of how to make them.
  • Chapter 5: Spelljamming Equipment - Stats for spelljamming ships of a variety of different types (Nautiloids, Squid Ships, Elven Plant Ships, Gnomish Clockwork Ships, Dwarven Forge-Strongholds, etc), magic items, space-siege weapons (Laser/Antimatter Cannons and similar concepts), Life Boats/Pods, etc.
  • Chapter 6: Monsters of Spelljammer - A bestiary with monsters and NPCs commonly found in Spelljammer, like Scro Warriors, Giant Space Hamsters, Astereaters, Cosmic Dragons, The Arcane, and Dohwar.
Yep, this is pretty much exactly what I would like to see. The only thing that seems to be missing is rules for ship-to-ship combat.

The one thing I emphatically don't want to see is some sort of Spelljammer/Planescape hybrid. Unfortunately, that's also the very thing I expect we will see. :(


Elder Thing
Yep, this is pretty much exactly what I would like to see. The only thing that seems to be missing is rules for ship-to-ship combat.

The one thing I emphatically don't want to see is some sort of Spelljammer/Planescape hybrid. Unfortunately, that's also the very thing I expect we will see. :(
I 100% share both your expectation and your sadness about it. Spelljammer and Planescape.were about two different ways to get from world to world. There's no reason or need to combine them.


Jedi Master
I think WoTC will take what they learned from Ravenloft when introducing Spelljammer, starting with an adventure to introduce new players to the setting. I imagine it will start players on the Sword Coast, and they either are hired or stow away on a ship, becoming crew members and getting introduced to the world, mechanics and possibilities of spell jamming. By the end of the adventure, the party may be in control of the ship. Then, if it proves popular, a follow up book will expand the setting.

A new name for the scros, it sounds horrible, at least ridiculous for Spanish-speakers.

I hope the return of the insectare as PC race, and the outer dragons (moon, solar, stellar..).


There is a great potential for the bionoids as hooks for new stories.



Pedantic Grognard
1) Spelljammers are not ships on the Astral. They are ships above the atmosphere. It is entirely possible to put ships on the Astral without trashing Spelljammer and stripping it for parts, and a publisher wanting to put ships on the Astral should just do that rather than gratuitously destroying Spelljammer. People who want to do their own mash-ups can, just as they can stick Waterdeep and the Free City of Greyhawk into their Eberron campaigns if they like.

2) Spelljammers either need to be largely kept away from the Forgotten Realms and other established settings, or nerfed. If you put enough spelljammers in Realmspace (for example) that Tier 2 characters can reasonably own one, they need to be bad enough at shipping things in point-to-point planetary travel that they don't completely dominate all forms of overland, water, and airship travel. Which, at published speeds, both 2e and Dungeon of the Mad Mage spelljammers utterly do.


A suffusion of yellow
I’d do something like use the Astromundi Cluster as a core setting for the game and replace races with Faction write ups. Then of course you need the Ship and World building rules,
I’d also add the Rock of Bral and a selection of Space Lairs

Book 1 Astrogators Guide
1 Campaigns in the Rainbow Sea
2 Spacefaring Life (Character Options)
3 Factions and Empires
  • Known Races (and how to tweak them)
  • New Races
5 Building a Ship
6 The Crew - Roles on a Ship
7 Ship Movement and Combat
8 Gravity, Air, Adrift in the Rainbow Sea <could be side bars>
9 Spells, Prayer and Patrons

Book 2 Celestial Mechanics
10 The Rock of Bral (Adventure Seeds)
11 Many Worlds
12 Building a Universe (Systems, Spheres, Planes)
13 Maps and Displays
14 Space Lairs (Adventure Seeds)

Book 3 The Astromundi Trade Almanac
The Astromundi Campaign - Planets, Factions and Trade
PCs as Merchants, Diplomats, Explorers and PiratesFreebooters
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