Category Archives: Ashen Stars

Ashen Stars

Play the gritty reboot of your favorite science fiction TV series. Winner of the 2012 Silver ENnie award for Best Setting, designed by RPG legend Robin D. Laws and powered by the GUMSHOE investigative roleplaying system. Out here in the Bleed, you’re the closest thing there is to a higher authority. You’re Licensed Autonomous Zone Effectuators […]

Asteroid Pirates

When your Ashen Stars characters next seek a person, piece of information, or illicit technology, place the object of their search in the fleet of the Asteroid Pirates. These rough-edged survivors of the post-War Bleed seek their fortunes in ships whose hulls are part alloy, part hollowed-out microplanetoid. Arrayed together, aided by sophisticated wavelength spoofers, […]

Never Given

A Scenario Hook for Ashen Stars The lasers pick up a contract for what appears to be a simple rescue mission. The massive freighter Never Given has lost faster-than-light capability and has become lodged in a translight corridor. Characters with Astronomy or Forensic Engineering want to hear that last bit again. Lodged in a translight […]

Community Content Spotlight: Solo Laser

In the Community Content Spotlight, each month I write up a short review of a GUMSHOE community content title, all of which are available on DriveThruRPG. See this page if you’re interested in creating something for our Community Program! ————————————— Stick around after the review to hear the results of the GUMSHOE Community Contest! An […]

Community Content Spotlight: Rogues’ Galaxy

In the new Community Content Spotlight, each month I’ll be writing up a short review of a community content title, all of which are available on DriveThruRPG. See this page if you’re interested in creating something for our Community Program! —————————————— With Rogues’ Galaxy, Chris Sellers turns the standard Ashen Stars setup on its head. […]

GUMSHOE Community program

It’s official – the GUMSHOE Community program is live! We announced in our Swords, Spies and Shoggoths panel at Gen Con (which you can listen to here, thanks to our friends at the Plot Points podcast) that we were launching the GUMSHOE Community program, making Ashen Stars content available to creators. If you’re not familiar […]

Station Duty: Bitter Vigil

A previous article outlined an alternate campaign frame for Ashen Stars. Here’s a worked example. (The inspiration for this example, by the way, came from an episode of 99% Invisible about the Great Bitter Lake Association.) In the Ashen Stars setting, ships travel fast-than-light along translight corridors. The largest starships – massive industrial supercarriers, mobile refineries, and […]

(Space) Station Duty

The 2nd edition of the Esoterrorists includes the Station Duty campaign frame, in which a Esoterrorist team is placed on long-term assignment to a particular small town for an ongoing investigation instead of the usual mystery-of-the-week. That approach also works in Ashen Stars. (The obvious worked example: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine swapped out the […]

See P. XX: Bad Contracts of the Bleed

A column about roleplaying by Robin D. Laws In Ashen Stars, players portray freelance law enforcers working the spacelanes of the frontier sector known as the Bleed. Their ability to secure lucrative contracts depends on their reputation, which goes up when they solve cases well and honorably, and drops when they get caught cutting ethical […]

Rogue Paleontologist Rewrites Planetary Ecosystem

Replication A scenario seed for Ashen Stars The lasers pick up a contract from an independent scientific consortium to investigate the fate of one of their Sherlock-class survey vessels. It sent out a distress call several days ago and has not been heard from since. The Linnaeus was orbiting a supposedly barren planet in the […]

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