A downloadable Pen and Paper RPG

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Earth was abandoned ages ago during the red giant expansion. Now, dimly lit by the ghost light of a dead white dwarf, it lies layered with eons of forgotten civilizations. From the warmth of Martian reactor cities, scavengers hire illegal transportation to earth to delve into its depths, looking for ancient treasures. There they must deal with ghosts, machines and the strange life that has evolved on humankind’s abandoned home planet.

In The Light Of A Ghost Star is a rules-lite system and setting for sci-fi roleplaying. It comes with a hex crawl and random tables that can also be used with other RPG systems.

Files include the main pdf, the main pdf in spread format for easier tablet viewing, a character sheet pdf that includes the game rules on the back, and an 11x17 pdf of the sample adventure hex map.

RPG Booklet


Buy Now$15.00 USD or more

In order to download this Pen and Paper RPG you must purchase it at or above the minimum price of $15 USD. You will get access to the following files:

In The Light Of A Ghost Star 1.1.pdf 5 MB
In The Light Of A Ghost Star 1.1 Spreads.pdf 5 MB
Character Sheet.pdf 101 kB
Earth Expedition 1 Map.pdf 2 MB
Character sheets 2 up Letter size.pdf 132 kB

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Community Copies

Due to tips from kind comrades, there are a limited number of free community copies available. Please do not claim a community copy if you can afford to purchase the product. These are intended for those who cannot.

Development log


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Hey, not directly related to the game, but do you know what brand the dice are from, by any chance? Especially the real/yellow and the speckled yellow one.

Feel free to delete this comment if its inappropriate.

Cheers, and keeo up the good work!

They are random dice from the big bin of dice at my local comic book shop. probably chessex but I'm not sure.

Those dice look to me just like the ones you can get from the Chessex Pound-O-Dice.


Hi there. Do you have plans for a reprint of this fine game?

In case somebody else is wondering the same, there is the Haunted Almanach that contains this game and a bunch of other works from Nate in a very nice hard cover package:


sold out :(

ghost star reprint can be preordered here 


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I was referring to the Haunted Almanac. Any plans to do a reprint of that, or something similar?


Thank you for a great game - Map of Our Adventure-The Dream of a Star Princess




I'll be running a session of Ghost Star this Friday. I think it'll be my second time running this little gem of a game.


In The Light Of A Ghost star is a 16 page gothic sci-fi adventure, somewhere between Flash Gordon and A Roadside Picnic in tone. It's got extremely clean, easy to read layout, a super evocative cover, and also some neat interior art. And it's fun.

The gameplay is similar to Into The Odd, but a bit more crunchy. HP and damage values are low, TNs are always 4, and everything works mostly in small numbers, and is weighted towards success.

Gear is important, and inventory space is rationed, giving the game a bit of a survival feel. At the same time, a fully geared character feels powerful, and this is definitely a game that tends towards the players feeling desperate but capable.

The pdf includes a small hex crawl and moderate-sized dungeon dive, and an accompanying host of tables to random-generate content as needed, but the system isn't hard to write for, and while you will want to sketch out general information for your scenarios in advance, you can very nearly seat-of-your-pants the GMing with minimal complications.

I would heartily recommend Ghost Star to anyone who likes adventure rpgs and old sci-fi serials, and especially to anyone who likes both crunch *and* games that are easy to run.

Minor Issues:

-In Earth Expedition One, due to the travel time between hexes, and the dungeon hex just looking like a forest, and none of the other hexes having pointers to it, and the seven day time limit, unless the GM prods the players in that direction, there's a very real chance they miss the dungeon entirely.

-Page 6, Hologram Kiosk, "player characters questions" characters'


thanks for the excellent write up!


Thanks for writing Ghost Star! It was a super fun read.

I can't seem to download this. I bought it through the recent BLM-bundle, but it tells me I can buy it, and not download it. Can anyone help?


Use the download link from the bundle entry for the game, not this “store page” where you otherwise would buy it.

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Is there plans for a second or third issue of the zine?


I'm planning a small risograph print run in the next month.

Sorry I mean are you going to continue zine with another book or two in future? New adventures and ideas. 


I am currently working on Kozmik Objects & Entities that was kickstarted earlier this year. It will have 10 locations to use with Ghost Star or any space-faring rpg.


Is there a way to be updated when more prints are available?

Follow the author on itch.io, by the button in the top right.

I will post here when more are available and will be posting on twitter at @natetrem

preorders are open here https://highlandparanormalsociety.com/preorder.html


(Barring current events) Are there plans for another print run of the game?


Yes, very soon hopefully. I had one planned for this month but will have to wait for the printer to reopen.


is there a mailing list i could join to notify me of the restock?

Preorders for the reprint are open here https://highlandparanormalsociety.com/preorder.html

Anyone interested in playing this online? My regular 5e group is not ready to embark on the world of indies!

Deleted 3 years ago

I might be willing to give it a shot as well. I feel like my normal gaming friends might not yet ready for indies either.

I would also like to give it a try. Haven't really got rpg experience but i've got to start somewhere

I'd be interested in hosting it on my discord if there was enough interest


I picked this game up because I'm really interested in running it but I have a little problem that you might be able to help me with. I want to print it out to have a physical version but I can't figure out how I would do that. The spreads don't seem to be made to print or is there just something I'm missing.


The spreads are for digital viewing and not set up for print. I print using the non spread version and Adobe Acrobat. Acrobat has a booklet option for printing. There is other software that does this as well. I will try to make a print ready booklet file when I get a chance.


Excellent RPG and adventure! Weird and evocative!


thank you John!

Question about Nergal, the Astro-Lich. Might be my poor english, but I need to ask why you sometimes use plural form to describe this NPC? 

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Sometimes in english the third person plural pronoun "they" is used as a non-gendered pronoun to indicate a single person of unknown or indeterminate gender. For example, if you have just come back from answering the doorbell, I might ask you "what did they want?" because I do not know the gender of the person who is at the door. This has been a feature of colloquial english since about the 14th century.

More recently, it can also be a personal preference for some people to be referred to as "they" if they do not feel like the masculine or feminine forms describe their experience of gender. It is generally considered polite to respect this.

In this case, I would suspect that Nergal, the Astro-Lich, is not gendered because can an Astro-Lich be said to have a gender? Who knows! They're an ancient and unknowable being, bored with this reality, who can shoot lightning from their hands!


Sorry Lukasz I did not get a notification of your comment or I would have answered!

Junebug answered wonderfully though (thanks!).


Thanks for clarification! It all makes sense :


Just a question about the fight procedure.

The character must do a fighter statistics test.

Does this test follow the overall rule of 4 or more to succeed, as explained in the Gameplay paragraph, and then determine the damage resulting from the weapon used? If the test fails, does the character take direct damage from the opponent?

Or is the fight managed with a test in opposition, stat of Fighter of the character against stat of Fighter of the opponent? So, if that's the case, there are no Fighter stat for any opponent in the rules .. :-(

Thanks for the explanation


It follows the same 4 or more rule, roll damage on success. Thanks JeePee!

And on fail, roll the opponent's damage to decrease the health of the player's character ? True?

I usually have the player make a separate fighter roll when defending against an attack but I like this idea of doing attack and defense in one roll, more streamlined!

Thanks for your advice.


I really like the use of professions/classes as stats. Very clear and flexible.


Just ran the sample dungeon. My first time DMing something and I was shocked how simple it is to run! Even improvised NPCs and created some characters I want to keep. Fungal Star Goblin twins Mooki and Rooki are going to have to come back.


Awesome! Please keep me updated on Mooki and Rooki. I love to hear how other people use the star goblins. Thanks for playing!

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Decided to differentiate Mooki and Rooki from the Goblins by making their race a cousin of the Goblins called Imps. They will run a shop on the Mars station (Player home) while their porpoise parents are away, causing mischief and aggravating my scientist party members.  


Amazing! Do you mind me sharing this on my blog? and do you have a website or way you'd like to be credited?


Sure, share away. My name can just be credited as Viscole. Thats the name I use on most other sites. And no website, sorry, I'm just a little college student trying new things.