Spelljammer has finally been confirmed for modern Dungeons and Dragons, and three new star-trekking D&D books that allow players to explore the space between worlds are set to arrive later this year.
Unveiled during the first D&D Direct stream, these Spelljammer books are collectively labelled ‘Spelljammer: Adventures in Space’ and will join the best tabletop RPGs on shelves this August 16 (you can pre-order it for $69.99 from Amazon (opens in new tab)). This mimics the setting’s original title from 1989.
Unlike most modern Dungeons and Dragons books, this new take on Spelljammer has been split into multiple volumes: a setting overview called Astral Adventurer’s Guide, a tome of monsters (dubbed ‘Boo’s Astral Menagerie, in reference to the famous miniature giant space hamster from the Baldur’s Gate video game), and Light of Xaryxis, a prewritten adventure with 12 episodes to play through. These books are all 64 pages long and delivered inside a slipcase that arrives alongside a Dungeon Master’s screen and double-sided poster map. As usual, alternate covers for Spelljammer: Adventures in Space will be available too.
Besides adding a science fantasy spin to the series, Spelljammer introduced the idea of ‘crystal spheres’ that contain individual solar systems to D&D. Using galleon-like ships equipped with a ‘spelljammer helm’, players can travel between these spheres and thereby hop from one setting to another. That includes Dragonlance (which is also getting a revival this year), the Forgotten Realms, and your own homebrew worlds.
No matter where you set your games, there are six new races to explore within Spelljammer: Adventures in Space. This includes the space-faring astral elves, auto gnomes (steampunk robots, essentially), the flying monkey hadozee, slime-like plasmoids, insectile thri-kreen, and giff hippo-folk. Some of these featured in the original version of Spelljammer, but all been revised for the new D&D rules.
Before Spelljammer: Adventures in Space launches on August 16, 2022, players can check out a free Monstrous Compendium with 10 Spelljammer monsters on the official D&D website (opens in new tab). It includes the asteroid spider (a creature big enough to engulf ships), an eldritch lich that’s powered by Great Old Ones from the dark reaches of space, and a gadabout, a winged plant that allows players to fly though the void. You’ll need to access this book is a free D&D account, but it won’t cost you anything.
This is due to be followed by a free prequel adventure in July. Although we don’t know much about it just yet, its name – ‘Spelljammer Academy’ – suggests it will show us the ropes for this space-faring world.
Of course, Spelljammer wasn’t the only D&D Direct announcement. Besides a fresh batch of tie-in WizKids models (you can watch the reveal trailer for them here (opens in new tab)), Dungeons and Dragons: Onslaught was officially shown off. Similarly, the new D&D Starter Set was finally unveiled after being accidentally revealed back in Febraury.
If you want models to go with your adventures, you can check out the best WizKids miniatures. As for other tabletop shenanigans, be sure to look into the best board games and these board games for adults.