Social, Mental, and Trade Skills

There are additional skills that are not currently described here in full, such as Willpower.  You can find the full text of these skills on the skills page here.


Age of Ashes has several skills and powers that require the creation of items, whether that is Gathering, Crafting, Engineering, Alchemy, Quest Items, or Ritual Items. The making of these items is handled by one of two devices – our Gathering Machine or our Creation Device. The Gathering Machine handles all gathering nodes, including Scavenging, while the Creation Device handles the rest of the development. In the case of Quest items and substitutions to Ritual Items, a player must ask a staff member in the field for their verbal approval for the item, and during use of the Creation Device, the form will ask for the name of the staff member who approved the material.

Staff will announce the location of these devices during announcements. 


Finesse is the Skill tree that encompasses skills involving deftness of hands, subtle control of your body, and stealth.

One skill branch that falls under the Finesse skill tree is Legerdemain, which allows characters to steal items from other characters.  Staff has a thief log where they keep track of everything that is taken from another player. In the event that you steal an item, you must steal both the phys rep and attached tag. For example, when looting armor off of the battlefield, you will need to remove the armor from the character rather than simply taking a tag from their body. Please bring the phys rep prop and the tag to staff, where we will keep the prop for safe-keeping and return to the owner, and will issue you a tag for the item for you to attach to your own phys rep at your next opportunity.  The player who has been stolen from can require that the thief use the original prop for the tag.

Another skill branch that falls under the Finesse skill tree is Stealth, which allows characters to be hidden from sight, indicated by covering ones face with a splayed hand, as long as conditions are met. Generally this requires shadows or at least 50% partial cover, although there are abilities that mitigate this. You remain hidden until you choose to leave it or if the conditions that allowed you enter the Stealth condition are removed.  One can rest in stealth, which must be signaled by one hand on a thigh, since the other is on your face. Abilities such as Swoop which allow 3 steps in stealth can only be used once before the character must rest to refresh the Swoop. 


There are three different Skill trees within Age of Ashes’ social skills.  These are Ethos, Logos, and Pathos.  

Social skills generally refresh after a Conversation, which means when you end the conversation, disengage, and leave the immediate area. Scenes are defined as scenarios involving more than one person in a particular location roleplaying on a particular topic. If a social skill lands successfully on a target that target does not feel as if anything is amiss, instead it is as if is a natural reaction.

When utilizing social powers please use both the assigned hand symbol and the verbal call. This is to ensure that people who might not be sure of which power you are using, or if you’re using a power at all, are certain, and they know which defense they can use. When using group social powers you may add a verbal call “Group” in addition to the Group hand sign to clarify to those that do not see your sign. 

Ethos is the use of an overwhelming presence, a perceived authority, and innate ability to command people into doing what you want. It is the most direct form of social engagement, and at times, the most aggressive. The hand symbol for the Ethos tree is a closed fist presented to the recipient. This is used to signify that Ethos skills are being used. The Disregard symbol for Ethos is the same, a closed fist, but shaken away.


Ethos Disregard

Logos is for the chess player, the subtle and lengthy act of persuasion, changing minds and thoughts via reasoned argument. The hand symbol for the Logos tree is a thumbs up gesture presented to the recipient. This is used to signify that Logos skills are being used. The Disregard symbol for Logos is the same, a thumbs up gesture, but shaken away.


Logos Disregard

Pathos is for the empath, focused on tugging at sentiments and emotions, and reading between the lines. It allows the conversationalist to see below the surface of those they engage with, and see the motivations in others’ hearts. The hand symbol for the Pathos tree is two fingers tapping twice on the body, typically on the heart. This is used to signify that Pathos skills are being used. The Disregard symbol for Pathos is the same, two fingers, but shaken away.


Pathos Disregard


Characters in Age of Ashes do not require Gathering skills or tools to see and gather at Gathering nodes in game, however- a skilled Gatherer is able to find useable and valuable items where others will find only ordinary or less useful plants. All Gathering Nodes in game are viewable and scannable by any character in game through the use of our QR code scanning system, but increased ranks in the relevant skill increases your ability to find usable and valuable items- as well as interact with modules  or Folkwise quests that involve specific Gathering skills and gather materials in the Downtimes between games.  In addition, unskilled Gatherers can only carry 1 unscanned node at a time, while skilled Gatherers can carry multiple items. 

The person who picks up a Gathering node is the person whose skills are used to calculate success on the Gathering action.  While others may point out a Gathering node to another player, they may not hand it to another player to turn in or scan. 

Gathering is the lifeblood of individuals and communities. These skills are what provide food and resources to build all of the needed tools, weapons, and items of daily life one might need. While most everyone is adept enough at surviving in this world to spot things that might potentially be useful, it takes more specialized gatherers to pinpoint more valuable and higher quality resources. Without Gatherers, an economy or township can grind to a halt as the materials needed for production are not in supply. Skilled gatherers are thus an essential part of any community.


See a full list of Gathering Skills here.

Crafting and Schematics

The Crafting Skill Tree includes the skills for woodworking, tailoring, and metalsmithing. The first level of Crafting allows for the creation of all simple schematics one has the professional tools for. When a player buys a set of professional tools they receive access to the set of Simple schematics that correspond to their type of professional tools. In order to craft items of a different crafting skill they would need to acquire a different set of professional tools and schematics.   When a player buys the level 3 Crafting ability in their specific branch, they then have access to all of the Intermediate schematics for their branch listed on the schematics page.

Masterwork items can be done by any crafter with the requisite skills, materials,  and schematics for the item, but require a downtime.

We expect you to physically represent crafting an item in character, and while crafting an item at the crafting station you cannot undertake any other major activities- such as combat or social calls, although you do not need to remain at the station for the entirety of the crafting time. The use of a crafting table reduces your crafting time by half, but requires that you remain physically present at the crafting table for the entirety of the time you are crafting an item.

Crafting requires the use of specialized professional tools for one’s particular trade, such as an apothecary kit or a set of blacksmith tools. All item cards should be accompanied by a phys rep.  If you do not have phys reps attached to an item card you cannot have more than ten item cards in a small box or tagged container, fifteen in a medium box, or twenty in a large box.


Schematics are detailed plans for the construction of items within the world of Age of Ashes. Most people are more concerned with survival rather than innovation, and many blueprints, instructions, and diagrams are from times past.

Occasionally, schematics are discovered that hint at how advanced the world must have been in the days of the late Throne Empire. But whether commonplace or extremely rare, these valuable slips of paper are all that remain of how to build the tools everyone relies on.

When you receive a schematic in game, it may have many fields that tell you how to use them.  You can find most Simple and Intermediate Crafting Schematics here:

For reference, the fields you may encounter and what they mean are listed here:

Schematic Name

The name at the top of the schematic is the name of the schematic itself.


This is the subtitle listed under the schematic name and will often say something like “Simple”, “Intermediate”, “Complex”, “Masterwork”, “Wyrd”, or “Expendable.”

This complexity is used in conjunction with crafting skills to determine what level of crafting skill is required to make it.

If a schematic is Expendable the schematic will be destroyed once used.

Item Section

This is a section that describes what the print will produce when used to craft.

Item Section – Name

Describes the name of the item the schematic will produce, if different from the Schematic Name.

Item Section – Quantity

Determines the number of items that will be produced when the schematic is used to produce an item. If this isn’t listed, the number of items produced is 1.

Item Section – Durability

Determines the durability of the item produced. Item durability is notated as a number that describes the expiration date an item will survive from the item it’s produced before it breaks or rots away from age, if applicable.

Item Section – Mechanics

Describes the mechanics (if any) of the item produced. 

Crafting Section

The crafting section notates information on what it takes to craft an item. This includes a specific callout for the specific materials, skills, and the time it will take to craft the item.

Staff Signature

All schematics at the bottom of their page will have a staff signature or item code that denotes it a valid in game item, as well as the game # that it was created.

See a full list of Crafting Skills here.



Traps (Basics)

Traps are WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get). If you see a trap, your character also sees the trap.  However, reading what a trap does on the trap tag is only allowed if you have triggered the trap or you have Engineering 1.  

Once a trap is set off, the card is read aloud to declare what happens. 

Anyone with the Disarming skill may manipulate traps by cutting strings or fishing line, it is never okay to cut electrical wires which are considered to be out of game or to physically break a trap prop. Every trap a player intends to set up must be approved by staff before game, or before the scene by a staff member if spontaneously made.


All traps must be inspected by a staff member before setup. If ANY staff member deems the trap or its use unsafe for play, that ruling will be universal for that game. You will need to make it safer and have it evaluated by staff at the next event before it can be used again.

The various parts of the trap include the following:

Trap- The portion of the device that generates the noise, and or the portion of the device that is armed/disarmed. Many traps will consist of a mouse trap on a base that brings the trap up to the required size. The base must be firmly attached to the trap.

Base- Anything firmly/permanently affixed to the ‘trap’. (this excludes trigger(s) component(s) and fastener(s).

Trigger- The portion of the device that activates the trap. Describes both the physrep and the action that will cause the trap to go off (usually a pressure or negative pressure trigger). All ‘trip line’ style traps must have a low-test strength (the weight required to snap it) of 2-5lbs, and when in use must never be more than 3 feet off the ground. Triggering mechanism must be physical and the trap itself accessible.

Component- Items that work in conjunction with the device to produce the effect. Most traps will include components such as a mouse trap that will create a sound or activate a light or buzzer or popcap to indicate that a trap has gone off. It could also be things that symbolize falling rocks or other dangers such as soft pillows or larp rocks, as well as larp daggers and so on. Components will be specified by the schematic or tag. (Please note that a tagged physical representation will be required to ‘set’ certain traps.)

Fastener- Items used to hold fast any parts of the device.

Schematic- The design that the builder/crafter used to create the device.

Tag- The portion of the device that tells players what the device does or did. Trap tags are specially prepared 3×5 notecards that are laminated and marked with dry erase markers or tyvek tags. When a trap is set up, the Delivery Effects, Trigger, and Range are written on the trap tag per the Schematics used to create them. The tag must be affixed to the trap itself and not the trigger. If your trap is found without a tag, it has no effect.  

Traps take a minimum of 10 full uninterrupted breaths (even conversation counts as an interruption) to set, even if you can physically set them up faster than that in real life. 


Trap and/or base- Must measure 36 square inches minimum, unless otherwise mentioned by the schematics/tag.


Traps have the following items outlined in the schematic:

  • Delivery: The type of trap. The delivery can be of these types: Alchemical, Snare, Physical Damage
    • Alchemical: Alchemical delivery traps typically have a delayed, continuous, or poisonous effect
    • Snare: Snare traps are meant to inhibit escape or mobility or cause an alarm or warning to go off. These are traps that do not cause damage. 
    • Physical: Deadly traps meant to harm in some way.
  • Trigger: What sets off the trap as defined by the schematic (pressure, negative pressure, etc.). 
    • Wire: Physrepped with a yarn or fishing line, when the line is broken the trap is sprung. The wire will be attached to the trap card. 2-5 lb test fishing line or taped yarn are considered safe. They cannot be a trip hazard. 
    • Other items that are sometimes used in conjunction with triggers are mousetraps and glowsticks, poppers, pressure plates, etc. 
  • Range: Determines who is affected when a trap is set off. 
    • As default, Only the person who tripped the trap card will be affected.
    • All other ranges will be specified by aoe descriptors such as “arms reach of the activator” “10-15’”, etc.
  • Reset: The trap card will indicate if the trap is a one-time use or a resettable trap
  • Snared: This means the person or people caught in the trap are unable to move. You may sit down for comfort. Another can free someone snared by taking 5 full breaths of time spent roleplaying that they are freeing their snared limb.  

Disarming Notes

Armed traps cannot be moved more than 5 ft unless it is contained within a hard chest or box and it’s a trap that goes off when said box or chest is opened.  But if at any time during moving the box the trap is triggered, it is assumed to have gone off.  Any trap with the tag on the outside of the box, if moved more than 5 feet, goes off. You should never throw a trap unless it is specifically allowed in the schematic design.

You should never throw a trap unless it is specifically allowed in the schematic design.

If you disarm a trap you may keep the trap item card, but not the prop. Please return those to staff.

The ONLY skill that can be used to counter a trap is dodge. And that will only work on non- area of effect traps without a speciality ability.

See a full list of Engineering Skills here.


Natural Philosopher


Perception allows you to see things that are not visible to most people. Perception tags may be taken and picked up unless the tag specifically says you cannot. If you wish to engage with the tag, we recommend picking it up and bringing it with you.

Barber Surgeon

Skilled in treatment of the physical body: from amputations to hair cuts, you know how to quickly deal with injuries with your sharp tools, instruments, and field dressings.

Plague Doctor

Plague Doctors are well versed in the treatment of maladies, imbalanced humors, and pestilence. They are familiar with many forms of disease and their treatment.


Extinction is the rule, and survival the exception. It’s a harsh world, and each day is a struggle, but some know better than others how to gain the edge needed to be the exception.


Alchemists study change – the transformation of one material into another. They can distill plants and minerals into cures or toxins and create chemical reactions for good or ill. Many consider it to be the philosophy of identifying a material’s spiritual essence and using it for its true purpose. The use of these skills requires Alchemist Professional Tools.

To read more on alchemy and its effects, read an excerpt from  “The Promise of the Earth, an Alchemical Treatise” by Olivia Prima Harela felia Livia – Seedkeeper.




The streetwise individual has applied their talents in observation and philosophy to a very different bent – that of human behavior. All people follow patterns, and the astute spy notices them quicker than most.


See a full list of Natural Philosopher skills here.



Age of Ashes have several skills, powers, and rituals that can preserve items that would normally break or rot away from age- such as vegetables, essences, or parts of a corpse. In the event that an item is preserved using one of these abilities, simply write the date preserved and Preserved upon the card itself.