Wizards of the Coast
Traveling the space lanes is risky and mysterious, and danger comes in many forms. The rescue of a tiny ship from pirate attackers leads to the discovery of a monumental, supernatural evil. Nothing is ever routine in space.
Crystal Spheres takes player characters through four unique crystal spheres to battle a powerful force of darkness. Player Characters will find themselves fighting not just for their lives, but the fate of an entire solar system and its millions of inhabitants.
“Crystal Spheres” is an adventure for the AD&D Spelljammer campaign setting. The Spelljammer boxed set is required to play. This 64-page adventure will easily adapt to any campaign world.
SJA3: “Crystal Spheres” (1990), by J. Paul LaFountain, is the third Spelljammer adventure. It was released in October 1990.
Continuing the “SJA” Series. “Crystal Spheres” continues the Spelljammer adventures. It’s an epic adventure, as was found in SJA1: “Wildspace” (1990): a sphere’s sun is on the verge of being snuffed out, and the players must save it.
Adventuring Tropes. “Crystal Spheres” lies on the line between the adventuring tropes of the ’80s and ’90s. It contains lots of random encounters and mapped locations. However, it also features events that drive players along a path to confront the problems of the underlying storyline.
Expanding Wildspace. True to its name, “Crystal Spheres” does a great job of providing good reasons to adventure across Wildspace from one sphere to another. Along the way it details four new crystal spheres: Herospace (which is for heroic adventures only, with 9 planets divided by alignment); Faeriespace (which is one gigantic community); Greatspace (which is an elder sphere focused on nobility and honor); and Darkspace (which is a sunless, shadowy void).
Unfortunately, one of the problems with Spelljammer was that it never brought together its many spheres into a coherent setting. The Spelljammerboxed set (1989) focused on the Radiant Triangle of Greyhawk, Krynn, and the Realms, but then the six Spelljammer adventures barely touched on those areas. Similarly, the worlds of Darkspace, Faeriespace, Greatspace, and Herospace would never be heard from again.
(Though TSR never created a larger Spelljammer setting, some fans have taken the next step, compiling all the spheres of Wildspace into a cohesive whole.)
“Crystal Spheres” also includes a beautiful chart comparing the sizes of the many spelljamming vessels revealed to date — including the Hummingbird from this very adventure.
About the Creators. LaFountain did a scattering of TSR work in the early ’90s. This was his premiere freelance work; he’d later contribute to MC8: “Monstrous Compendium Outer Planes Appendix” (1991), SJR3: “Dungeon Master’s Screen” (1991), and some supplements for the Buck Rogers XXVC RPG.
About the Product Historian
The history of this product was researched and written by Shannon Appelcline, the editor-in-chief of RPGnet and the author of Designers & Dragons – a history of the roleplaying industry told one company at a time. Please feel free to mail corrections, comments, and additions to email@example.com.