Let’s Roll: Spelljammer

Part 2 of Let's Roll's look at the greatest Dungeons & Dragons settings has Siskoid and special guest Fred Melanson talk about Spelljammer, AD&D's Adventures in Space! How does THAT work? And ultimately, what made the game line fail? Plus, how to create your own genre mash-ups, in the GameMaster Advice column.

Relevant images and credits in the Let's Roll Supplemental.

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8 responses to “Let’s Roll: Spelljammer

  1. The one time I played Spelljammer was for a 24 hour Role-Play session while I was at the University of Sheffield. We were playing evil characters and I, being Lawful, ended up as the Captain. Eventually we ended up with a huge ship (similar to this: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/78742693459360326/) with a large pirate crew and an entire deck that was part of a forest. We managed to get the forest by making a deal with a druid, who we told could come with and tend the woodland deck and, since we would be autonomous, would result in him become an Arch-Druid.

    We might have been a bit loopy at the end. 😉

    Overall, being the Star Trek guy that I am, I always liked the idea of Spelljammer, but the execution left something to be desired. Now that it’s being updated, I might take a look at it again.

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  2. You’ve done it again! This time you didn’t just coordinate your episode with a relevant RPG sale, but with a major announcement from Wizards of the Coast. It looks like Spelljammer will be coming to 5th Edition Dungeons and Dragons later this year. I’m curious to see how they (hopefully) address some of the shortcomings of the 2nd Edition product.

    I also enjoyed your GM tips on creating genre mash-ups. I was a fan of Wild Wild West as a kid, and could see enjoying a good western/super spy mash-up.

    Thanks for another incredible episode.

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  3. Absolutely fascinating! Thank you so much for covering this. I had no idea this concept even existed, as I only played D&D in the most basic sense. It seems like there was a lot of fun to be had out there in “Wild Space”. Hope you cover Ravencroft soon.

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  4. Another great episode, everyone! This was fascinating because I only knew of Spelljammer from the DC comics house ads. In fact, I never knew that they made them as rulebooks. Do you know what came first, the rulebooks or the comics? Or was it a combined media “blitz”? I see the Wiki just says 1989……

    And, as always, I love your Gamemaster’s tips. It really hits home that, as the GM, I can do almost anything with the setting. Even though the games are infrequent, I’ve been trying to really see what my players respond to with these tips and try to incorporate more of that into our games.

    Keep up the great work!

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    1. The game was first, the comics were a tie-in, but put into production pretty quickly. Spelljammer #1 has a cover date of September 1990, which would probably mean it was on the stands early summer of that year. The game itself landed in stores at the end of November ’89.

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  5. Always a good time on Let’s Roll!! This was no exception. I’ve been trying to get my DM to do a Spelljammer campaign, but we just finished a seafaring one where we were pirates. So, it might be a little while before we get back on a boat. Thanks for the excellent work you do on the show!

  6. The concept of genre mash-up is what hooked me into role playing for good.

    For anyone reading this: what would be your dream mash-up to play?

    Mine, I think, would be some kind of historical Supers. Feudal Japan Supers maybe?

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