Is Wizards of the Coast working on a Star Frontiers reboot?

A recent public playtest for Dungeons & Dragons Some wonder if another tabletop role-playing game is coming back in one form or another. Yesterday, Dungeons & Dragons released an Unearthed Arcana playtest for six new playable races, many of which have ties to the classic Spelljammer campaign setting. TSR Inc. (the original publisher of Dungeons & Dragons) first released Spelljammer material in 1989 to provide players with a space opera-style campaign setting where players traveled between planets on magical ships called spelljammers. Spelljammer was not TSR’s first foray into science fiction, however. Almost 7 years before the release of the first Spelljammer material, TSR released Star Borders, a tabletop role-playing game with a rule system completely separate from Dungeons & Dragons.

So what Star borders have to do with the Unearthed Arcana playtest released this week? Well, three of the races featured in the play test are “reworked” versions of the three playable alien races found in Borders of stars. The Plasmoids are equivalent to the Dralasites, the Hadozee are versions of the Yazirians, and the Thri-Kreen are roughly analogous to the Vrusk.

To be clear, TSR was the first to reuse the three Star borders races in Spelljammer – Plasmoids, Hadozee, and Thri-Kreen have all appeared in canonical D&D material in the past. However, it’s still quite interesting that Wizards of the Coast chose these races instead of races like the Dracon or the Grommam or the Xixchil.

Wizards of the Coast owns all IPs associated with Star Borders, although another company named TSR Inc. attempted to apply for the trademark at Star borders name earlier this year. The legality of this mark could be disputed, however, given that Wizards of the Coast owns the genuine Star borders IP.

More likely than the rating, this week’s playtest is just for Dungeons & Dragons and is not a secret introduction for a Star borders the comeback. However, it’s cool to see old chunks of role-playing history revitalized in a new format, and hope will always be eternal for those hoping to see their favorite fictional space lairs return for a new generation of gamers.

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About Johanna Gooding

Johanna Gooding

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