Ashes: Afterglow


Ashes: Afterglow
Title screen
Authors Vostyok and ReformedJoe
Port GZDoom
Year 2021
Link ZDoom forums thread
Cacoward-2018.png This mod received one of the 2021 Cacowards on Doomworld!

Ashes: Afterglow is a total conversion for the GZDoom engine developed by Vostyok and ReformedJoe, first released on October 22, 2021. It is the sequel to 2018's Ashes 2063, picking up the story where the former left off, and featuring 20 new levels, most of which are split across two hubs while a few others are standalone, interlude levels. Ashes: Afterglow once again features new music by John Weekley (PRIMEVAL).

While the theme and gameplay elements in Ashes: Afterglow closely resemble those of its predecessor, it is much expanded, with levels that are now far larger, non-linear by virtue of the hub system, and with many new enemy types and weapons. It even features a brand new upgrade system for all of the game's weapons in order to increase their power and give each gun unique abilities. The returning motorcycle from the first mod also sees an upgrade in a similar fashion. Additionally, the mod places a heavier emphasis on narrative and exploration, and features multiple endings depending on the player's choices and actions during the game.

Ashes: Afterglow received one of the Cacowards in 2021.


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Vulture Thug
Human enemy wielding a 9mm autoloader and a small health pool. There is a 1/3 chance on entering a new map that he will instead spawn as a revolver user with a different appearance. Although initially aggressive, taking too much damage will cause him to retreat. Replaces the zombieman enemy, and will sometimes be neutral in some areas unless attacked.
Vulture Bandit
Human enemy wielding a pump-action shotgun. Although slower, he is just as aggressive and has better armor. He is also less likely to retreat during a fight unless severely low on health. Replaces the shotgun guy.
Vulture Marauder
Blue-haired raider girl who brings a machine-pistol and metal armor to the fight. She is much more aggressive and never runs from a fight. Replaces the chaingunner.
Goonz Boss
A unique mini-boss exclusive to the motorcycle factory in Westside. He is much tougher and dual-wields a pair of .45 revolvers, but is otherwise identical to the regular thugs.
Also known as bug-dogs, they have a slow moving acid projectile attack as well as a more damage melee claw attack. Their glowing eyes make them easy to spot but their speed and reduced hit box can make hitting them tricky. They take less damage from radioactive or acid based attacks, should they be involved in infighting. Replaces the imp.
Cannibal Savage
Standard foot-soldiers of the cannibal hordes. A higher health pool and a zig-zagging movement pattern means they can close distance with you very quickly. Fortunately, apart from a short-ranged lunge attack, they have no ranged abilities to speak of. Unlike humans, mutants never run from a fight. Replaces the demon.
Cannibal Overseer
More intelligent and tougher than the regular cannibals, they are often found leading smaller packs of savages or pit-fiends. His cleaver is easy to avoid but he usually prefers to pelt enemies at range with his explosive crossbow. Replaces the Hell knight.
Cannibal Manslayer
Similar to a cannibal savage in terms of toughness, but wields an enormous riot shield to protect himself. The shield has its own hit box, so accurate shooting can hit him where he isn't protected, but the shield can also be broken outright with enough firepower. He also wields a scattergun and can smack the player for heavy damage. He drops shotgun shells on death and the shield, when broken, produces an armor fragment. Replaces the mancubus.
Cannibal Master
Largest of the common mutant types. They carry full-sized master-blasters, but fortunately never use the flamethrower alt-fire. Their melee attacks can throw the player a decent distance across a room, so it is still best to avoid getting too close. They have a lot of health but are fortunately slow and do not react as quickly during combat as other mutant types. They drop gas cylinder ammo on death. Replaces the baron of Hell.
Cannibal Destroyer
The elite of the mutant hordes. Although not as tough as a master, they move much quicker and are much more aggressive, able to switch between a barrage of master blaster shots or even the flamethrower mode. If their prey takes cover, they will attempt to flush them out with a cluster of rad-grenades, which can put your radiation meter into the red in moments. They drop gas cylinder ammo on death and are highly resistant to fire attacks. Replaces the arch-vile.
Disguised as piles of scrap and rubble, trash hags will often lay ambushes using junk or other items as bait. They can jump a fair distance as well, allowing them to clear obstacles or platforms to reach or disorientate their prey. Their melee attacks are also extremely deadly, but they are easier to bring down than a cannibal. Replaces the spectre.
Floating organic landmines, gasbags can do heavy damage if they can get close to an enemy and explode. Keep your distance if you plan on taking one out. Fortunately, they are slow unless charging, and have a very limited range within which they can detect a threat unless attacked, meaning that they can be avoided entirely. They do not react to sound at all. Replaces the lost soul.
Gasbag Nursery
A more advanced gasbag form, nurseries are more aggressive and will use seeking spore projectiles to chase down a target. They also explode on death with more potency than a regular gasbag. However, they are very slow and hard to miss. Replaces the pain elemental.
Plant-based mutants which move fast and can take a serious beating. Their acid projectiles are hard to avoid and if they get close, they will unleash a swarm of lashing tentacles and chase down their prey. Their only weakness is their extreme vulnerability to fire based weaponry. Replaces the arachnotron.
Laughing Tom
Corrupted scavengers who still retain a degree of intelligence. They are extremely proficient with the junker muskets they still carry, and will also lash out with a melee strike if they get close enough. Although not particularly durable, they have an ability that allows them to "hide" if the player loses sight of them, sometimes allowing them to appear directly behind a target. They drop a pack of musket slugs on death. Replaces the revenant.
Floating, ghostly enemies which announce their presence with a distorted wail. They take a lot of firepower to bring down and can damage and thrust back enemies who attempt to close into melee range. Their projectiles also do heavy damage and can temporarily slow a target for a short duration. Although they aren't particularly difficult to hit when stationary, they tend to phase about during a fight, meaning that a shot can miss entirely if poorly timed. Replaces the cacodemon.
New-Guard Soldier
Human enemies who wear body armor and use military rifles. Similar to vulture enemies in behavior, but they are a lot more accurate with their shots and do not retreat if injured. They drop a military rifle on death. Replaces the Wolfenstein SS.
Also known as the Gemini, this gruesome-twosome can lay down an impressive amount of firepower, whether through machine gun fire, flames or thrown pipe bombs. Has two stages of abilities depending on health remaining, becoming much faster and aggressive but losing the ability to thrown bombs if damaged enough. Replaces the cyberdemon.
Unique to the Biodome, these plant-like growths will launch seeking spore bombs in an arc at any prey that comes within range. Fortunately, they will not react to attacks, even if taking damage, and can be safely destroyed from afar. They take more damage from fire based weaponry, but any weapon can destroy them relatively quickly.
The leader of the mutant horde heading north, she has an array of powerful abilities and strong defenses, even able to summon ghostly clones if pressed. Only concentrated, heavy firepower will be able to bring her down. Replaces the spider mastermind.


Crowbar (slot 1)
The default melee weapon. Has a longer range and more damaging attack than Doom's fist, though it cannot be modified. A secret "golden crowbar" can be obtained later in a secret, but confers no practical advantage.
Jackhammer (slot 1)
Replaces the chainsaw, doing more damage and with the addition of knock-back. Can be modified at a workbench with a spiked tip for more damage, or a remapped and improved engine, giving much better fuel efficiency. Uses jackhammer fuel as ammo which cannot be found normally, but modifying the weapon automatically refills the fuel tank.
.45 revolver (slot 2)
The starting pistol, though it is no slouch at all as a backup weapon. Has a 6-round capacity and better accuracy than most other weapons. It can given an extended barrel at a workbench, boosting average damage by 30%, as well as a modified firing mechanism, allowing the player to fire several shots rapidly by "fanning" the hammer. Uses heavy bullets.
9mm autoloader (slot 2)
Dropped by some of the human enemies, the autoloader is faster than the revolver and has a 15 round capacity, but is much less precise and does less damage overall. Modifying the weapon at a workbench adds a laser pointer which reduces the spread considerably, while the second upgrade adds a three-round burst secondary fire which does bonus damage per hit. Uses Light Bullets, and reloading before the magazine is empty allows one shot to be "chambered", setting the capacity to 16.
Pump-action shotgun (slot 3)
Replaces the regular Doom shotgun. Has a tight circular spread pattern but only a six shell capacity and reloads slowly. Secondary fire is a "butt-stroke" melee attack. It can be modified at a workbench with a bayonet stab secondary fire, and later a magazine adaptor that decreases reload time considerably. Uses shotgun shells as ammo and reloading when empty adds an additional delay to the reload cycle.
Sawed-off shotgun (slot 3)
Replaces the combat shotgun. Has a wider spread than the pump-action but can fire both barrels at once with secondary fire. When upgraded at a workbench it can be given a third barrel, while later it can ironically be fitted with a stock, reducing recoil and spread. Uses shotgun shells as ammo.
Machine-pistol (slot 4)
Replaces the chaingun. Has an extremely high rate of fire (especially when fired "gangster-style" with the secondary fire) but suffers from high recoil and spread compared to the autoloader. It has a 32 round capacity as standard. Upgrading the weapon at a workbench adds a suppressor, which reduces the recoil and reduces the distance at which monsters are awoken to a small radius around the user. The second upgrade improves capacity, accuracy, damage and reload speed all by a small amount. Uses 9mm ammo.
Master-blaster (slot 5)
Replaces the rocket launcher. Shots arc and have a smaller radius than a rocket's, but do fire damage which can be more effective against certain enemies. Secondary fire is a flamethrower which has a much higher damage/ammo ratio, but a short range. The first upgrade at a workbench raises the capacity from the default 6 to 9. The second upgrade increases the range and speed of the weapon's projectiles, as well as giving them a blueish hue. Uses Gas Cylinders as ammo.
Pipebomb (slot 6)
Replaces the normal rocketammo ammo pickup. Pipebombs are thrown like grenades after a short "lighting the fuse" animation, with a longer thrown range being achieved by holding down the fire key. This also reduces the bounce time and life of the projectile, with predictably fatal results if the player forgets to throw before the fuse runs out. Secondary fire places the weapon as a tripwire trap which activates when attacked or a monster contacts it. The player can carry 10 pipe bombs by default and they cannot be modified.
Junker musket (slot 7)
Replaces the plasma rifle. A single-shot sniper rifle with a scope secondary fire. Modifying the weapon at a workbench converts the weapon into a lever action repeater with a 3-shot capacity, while the second upgrade adds an electromagnetic coil-gun mechanism which does more damage the longer the player holds the fire button. Using the boot-knife cancels the shot without wasting any ammo. Uses slug ammo.
Military rifle (slot 7)
Dropped only by the New Guard Soldier enemy, but can be placed in a map with an appropriate spawn number. Has a 30-shot capacity and fires three-shot bursts by default, but single shots can be fired by tapping the fire button. The first upgrade makes the weapon fully-automatic, while the second upgrade adds a "pipe bomb launcher" secondary fire, using pipe bombs as ammo and with an additional section of the HUD unlocked to show the weapon is loaded. Uses 5.56mm (sometimes referred to as .223) ammo.
Killer pig (slot 8)
Replaces the BFG9000, but can only be obtained in Afterglow by finding all three components and then constructing the weapon at a workbench. One of the few weapons which does not require reloading. The first upgrade adds a 3-shot cluster shot secondary fire with a small area-of-effect explosion on image. The second upgrade improves the refire rate of both fire modes. Uses slug ammo, although not as efficiently as the musket.
Lazer gun (slot 9)
A joke weapon, found only within a secret in the second hub of Afterglow. Although it has no ammo usage, it does no damage at all and is completely useless as a weapon. Can be modified at a workbench to fire a green laser instead of a red one, with no additional properties. The second upgrade however turns the laser greenish cyan, allows it to be visible as a trail, does fire damage, and caused the weapon to consume Laser Battery ammo, which cannot be found or otherwise replenished. Note that even the harmless laser shots will wake some enemies and NPCs up, even if it does no damage, causing them to attack the player.



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