Years after Spelljammer: Confirmed became a meme, we’re getting an in-depth look at what Dungeons & Dragons has in store for the revitalized science-fantasy setting. At a recent press event, Chris Perkins (D&D’s principal story designer) and Greg Tito (D&D’s senior comms manager) introduced the updated setting and gave us a bunch of art to show off.
“Spelljammer has always been a bit of a weirdo,” Perkins said, while discussing the three books that are included in the revamped setting: an adventurer’s guide, a bestiary, an adventure, and a Dungeon Master’s screen alongside a massive map of the Rock of Bral. The Fifth Edition setting takes a lot of the lore from the 1989 setting, and translates it into modern stats and descriptions, but there are no really big departures from the space pirate aesthetic of the original. It has adjusted some of the world-building to suit the “cosmology” of Fifth Edition, and in doing so taken away some of the weirdness—and the uniqueness—of the original.
Still, the option to have a space-faring campaign in Fifth Edition is a fun addition, and while there are some gonzo elements (like space clowns and giant space hamsters) that feel just a little too bizarre for a book that is also attempting to balance out intergalactic political intrigue with the Light of Xaryxis adventure, the whole endeavor will appeal to people who were already interested in what Spelljammer has to offer.