A series of manga that mostly take place just behind, and a little to the left, of ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamSEED''.

Lowe Gear is a member of the Junk Guild, an organization of [[AlmightyJanitor mechanics and salvage experts]] that usually retrieve and recycle space debris, and resell it for (hopefully) a profit. Or keep them for personal use if they're [[RuleOfCool cool enough]]. Lowe and his friends show up at the space colony Heliopolis (Kira Yamato's DoomedHometown) shortly after the ''Archangel's'' escape. Searching through the ruins for survivors or anything of value, they come across a pair of [[SuperPrototype Gundams]], one red, and the other blue, that were somehow missed in all the commotion before. But before they can capitalize on their find, they are attacked by the Serpent Tail, a group of mercenaries hired to keep the Astray Project a secret. Lowe faces off against Gai Murakumo, the leader of the Serpent Tail, until the mercs themselves are double-crossed by their employers, who count them among the witnesses they don't want. Gai takes the Blue Frame and uses it to take care of their erstwhile employers, before Lowe shows up with the Red Frame to make sure he doesn't try the same to his friends. The two groups depart with their new respective mobile suits.

The story continues with the various adventures of Lowe and his friends, fleshing out the Gundam SEED universe, often preceding or following up on events in the series, and fixing a few plot holes along the way [[spoiler: For example, it's Lowe who saves Kira after he's nearly killed by the self-destructing Aegis Gundam]]. They often meet or clash with the Serpent Tail from time to time, and seem to run into a lot of people with an unhealthy interest in the Astrays, such as Rondo Ghina Sahaku, who had them built in the first place, and still owns the ''third'' Astray, Gold Frame.

''Manga/MobileSuitGundamSEEDAstray R'' is the sister series to Astray by a different author, and more or less runs concurrently with the original. Both comics reference each other regularly. A photonovel, ''Astray B'', was also written. Astray R focuses specifically on Lowe's adventures, while Astray B focuses on Gai; the letters refer to their respective Astray Gundams, Red Frame and Blue Frame.

Another similar series, ''Gundam [=SEED=] X Astray'', takes place roughly during a short TimeSkip in episode 47 of ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamSEED'', and features Canard Pars, a "failed" experiment [[spoiler: in the same "Ultimate Coordinator" program that spawned [=SEED=] protagonist Kira Yamato]]. He wishes to prove that he's not a failure by defeating Kira and the Strike Gundam, but first runs into our Junk Guild and Serpent Tail heroes, and promptly attacks them, seeing as they have Gundams in their possession. During this, both teams come across Prayer Revierie, a young boy with a Mobile Suit that contains both a nuclear reactor, and a device known as a Neutron Jammer Canceller, which would allow said reactor to work. When Canard finds out about Prayer's N-Jammer Canceller, he naturally wants it to give his Hyperion Gundam the power to face Kira head on (as by this point Kira has upgraded to the nuclear-powered Freedom Gundam).

The next in the Astray series is ''[=Gundam SEED DESTINY Astray=]'', which features the reporter Jess Rabble, who is assigned to check out reports of a ZAFT Superweapon. It turns out to be none other than Lowe and crew, who are using the spoils of a battle in ''R'' to head out to Mars. Unfortunately, Jess' Mobile Suit is wrecked before things are straightened out, so before he leaves, Lowe gives him the Astray Out Frame, a mech he found in the base and fixed up. As the Junk Guild crew heads out to space, the story follows Jess as he views the events in and around the Second Bloody Valentine War through very large camera lenses. It also introduces the mercenary Kaite Madigan, who sometimes acts as a bodyguard to Jess. After going through a succession of customized mobile suits, Kaite eventually acquires Out Frame's nuclear-powered sister unit, the Testament Gundam.

''DESTINY Astray'' also has its own side story, a one-shot chapter following Rondo Mina Sahaku (Rondo Ghina's not-so-evil twin sister), which mainly serves to show off Gold Frame's latest upgrade (which may or may not have [[http://www.mahq.net/mecha/gundam/destiny-msv/mbf-p01-re2.htm the longest name in Gundam history]]).

This is followed up by ''[=DELTA Astray=]'', a story of Martian colonists chased by the protagonist of [=STARGAZER=] (before the events of [=STARGAZER=]). Then ''FRAME Astray,'' which focuses on Gai and the Serpent Tail during the events of the ''[=SEED=]'' TV series, between their appearances in earlier Astray series.

After that came ''VS Astray'', centering on a new antagonistic faction called Librarian that makes use of "Carbon Humans", pseudo-clones made by injecting people with genetic material from others, and having them pilot copies of past mobile suits. Because the series received a huge marketing blitz mostly centered around [[PaletteSwap recolored and only barely changed versions of existing model kits]], fans are decrying this one as MerchandiseDriven (even moreso than the norm for Gundam) drivel.

Finally, ''Destiny Astray R'' and ''Destiny Astray B'' are coming along as the newest entries, covering short stories from the ''Destiny'' part of the series.

Both ''Astray'' and ''X Astray'' made it into ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWarsW'' alongside ''SEED''. In fact, Astray's storyline makes up the greater content of SEED material in the story.

Character page under construction [[Characters/MobileSuitGundamSeedAstray here.]]

!This series contains examples of:

* AbortedArc: When ''Astray'' began it was strongly implied that Lowe's intelligent computer 8 was the learning computer from [[Anime/MobileSuitGundam Amuro Ray's Gundam]]; Lowe found it in an "abandoned space capsule" that looked exactly like the Gundam's Core Fighter, and the name 8 comes from [[LineOfSightName the only writing visible on the casing]] (which was positioned as if it were the last number in a sequence, as in "RX-78"). However, if this was the plan ''Astray''[='s=] writers never followed up on it, and ''Manga/MobileSuitCrossboneGundam'' showed a very different fate for the Core Fighter and learning computer.
* AceCustom: The Red, Blue, and Gold Astray Frames are all extremely heavily modified by their pilots, repeatedly, over the course of the series. This is best shown when the fourth Frame, Green Frame, showed up in ''FRAME Astray'' against Serpent Tail and got demolished, since it was still just a vanilla Astray unit except for its green coloration.
** The last chapter of the original Astray manga showed that both Gai and Miguel Aiman from SEED both had custom [=GINNs=] that were lost in battle against each other, [[ForWantOfANail right before the battle on Heliopolis]].
* ArmedLegs: Blue Frame Second mounts knife blades in its toes and heels.
* ArtisticLicensePhysics: The Delta Astray uses rocket engines for standard maneuvering and the Voiture Lumiere solar sail system for rapid acceleration and extreme maneuverability. Solar sails can push a spacecraft to higher velocities than rockets...eventually. In terms of SuperMode style acceleration, however, they're the ''last'' thing you want to go to.
** Also, the Powered Red represents a particularly suspension of disbelief-obliterating example. It's supposed to be able to swing a 150 meter katana, far larger and denser than itself. It is said to be designed to have enough strength to do this, [[SpaceDoesNotWorkThatWay when the real problem is not strength but thrust]]. Trying to swing such a massive weapon in space would only result in the Powered Red swinging itself because it has nothing to push off of and its thrust capacity wasn't upgraded. Never mind the mockery it makes of the square-cube law. Even scaling a katana up to mobile suit size was supposed to be difficult. Making one 20 times longer should be impossible if the tech had any internal consistency.
** Speaking of Powered Red, its Red Flame attack is capable of damaging even mobile suits protected by Phase Shift Armor with its sheer force... Despite the fact that Powered Red itself is still made of foaming metal, ''the'' most brittle mobile suit armor material. Logically speaking, an attack that powerful would shatter its hand, and possibly its arm too.
* AttackDrone: Gunbarrels and [=DRAGOONs=] again.
* {{BFS}}: In ascending order: Gerbera Straight, and its partner Tiger Pierce, Sword Calamity Gundam, the many Tactical Arms' Sword Modes, and the Gerbera Straight II. That last one is [[BiggerIsBetter 150 meter long]](!) and is on one occasion used to [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome skewer a battleship]]..
* BlindWithoutEm: Riika Sheder in ''DESTINY Astray'' is ''literally'' blind without her cybernetic "glasses". With them she's an ace pilot.
* BrainUploading: [[spoiler: George Glenn]]
* BrickJoke: In the animated Red Frame short, Lowe purchases a salvaged [=BuCUE=] head but has to leave it behind when ZAFT attacks, and the short ends with Lowe lamenting that he has to abandon such an expensive treasure. Nine real-world years later in ''Destiny Astray R'', Lowe finds the head again and is so happy that he cries ManlyTears, but ends up having to win it off of a bandit leader who's claimed it as his good luck charm.
* BrokenPedestal: To a point. [[spoiler:When George Glenn is revived via hologram, the crew (especially fangirl Kisato) is surprised to find that rather than the larger-than-life [[OurFounder figure]] Coordinators made him out to be, he's actually pretty light-hearted and jovial. This is equally surprising to the readers, since all that had previously been seen of him was in formal occasions, and the prepared speech he gave while leaving for Jupiter that revealed the existence of Coordinators. He even lampshades this trope. George does eventually convince Kisato to give him a fair chance.]]
* CanonImmigrant: ZigZaggingTrope. ''Astray'' was apparently intended to tie directly into the ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamSEED'' TV series (Red Frame even appears briefly in the first opening), but those plans fell through and reduced it to a sidestory. However, Sunrise still seems to consider it official, as the Re-H.O.M.E. cameos in Episode 47, and of course a pair of promotional anime shorts were produced.
* CloningBlues: Prayer is said to be a clone of a pilot from the Moebius Zero corps; [[spoiler:''Vs Astray'''s enemy faction Library is full of "Carbon Humans", people injected with DNA from others making them pseudo-clones. An aged-up Prayer appears (even though he's supposed to already be dead by that point), looking like a poofier-haired Mu La Flaga, ending the mystery of his genetic source material.]]
** ''VS Astray'' centers around the concept of Carbon Humans, people who are almost-but-not-quite clones ("carbon" as in "carbon copy"). However, there are two more direct examples: [[spoiler:Lily Thevalley, pilot of the Nero Blitz, is actually several clones piloting identical Gundams, using their cloaking systems to make enemies think it's one machine that can teleport. ND-HE (No Data High Error), pilot of the Gale Strike, was implied to be a clone of Kira Yamato, only for a late chapter to reveal he's in fact a clone of ''Astray'''s own Gai Murakumo.]]
* ColorMotif: [[RedOniBlueOni Lowe is emotional and passionate; Gai is calm and logical]]. Guess what colors their respective Gundams are?
* CommonplaceRare: The Strike Gundam from the original ''SEED'' was originally a SuperPrototype; ''Astray'' introduces its successor model, the Strike Enhanced (Strike E), which is used as an uncommon elite unit by the EA. The Strike Noir from ''Gundam SEED CE73 Stargazer'' is also of this type (Strike E + Noir Striker Pack).
* DudeLooksLikeALady: Canard Pars. [[BareYourMidriff His outfit doesn't help.]]
** Rondo Ghina Sahaku, so much that the Tokyopop translation of the manga has erroneously referred to him as a lady.
* {{Expy}}: As soon as Lily Thevalley was revealed in ''VS Astray'', fans started declaring her an Expy of [[Anime/MobileSuitGundamZZ Elpe Puru]]. [[spoiler:Turns out they were spot-on, since there are a double handful of Lily clones running around, and one ends up being taken in by the Junk Guild, just as Puru was by Judau and the Shangrila kids.]]
* FragileSpeedster: Astray Gundams use a foam metal composite for armor material which is nowhere as durable as SEED PS armor but much lighter.
* GadgeteerGenius: Lowe
* HomemadeInventions: Quite a few.
* HumansAreBastards: Kaite Madigan was abandoned by his parents because his genetic modifications didn't come out as they intended. What's his "defect", you ask? His hair is two-toned (blond and black). There's an entire mercenary organization, Circus, dedicated to taking in such abandoned Coordinators.
* IllGirl: Prayer, a rare male example. [[spoiler: Speculated to be another Al Da Flaga clone or even a, however unlikely, ''Mu La Flaga'' clone]]
* InsistentTerminology: In ''Destiny Astray R'', Lowe invents the Caletvwlch, which he insists is a multi-purpose cutting and welding tool and '''not''' a weapon...despite the fact that it looks like a GunBlade and is named after a legendary sword. When asked, he explains that there are limiters in place to keep it from being used as a weapon; if someone disables those limiters, they're taking responsibility for its use after that point. Note that he does this because the Junk Guild has very strict rules against the creation and sale of weapons.
* ItWasAGift: Elijah Kiel hangs onto his custom GINN long past the point of obsolescence because it uses parts from his dead friend Goud Veir's custom GINN, given to Elijah just before [[MercyKill he had to be put down]]. This also serves to explain its unusual half-blue-and-red paint job. Eventually Kaite Maddigan destroys the GINN in a LetsYouAndHimFight situation and gives Elijah a custom ZAKU as an apology.
* JerkAss: Agnes Brahe from ''DELTA Astray'': very HotBlooded, looks down on Earthlings and has little tolerance for those who don't share his points of view.
* KatanasAreJustBetter: Arguably [[JustifiedTrope justified]]; the Gerbera Straight has no power requirements, which is especially important since a vast majority of Cosmic Era MS use batteries rather than fusion reactors.
** It's a double-edged sword (no pun intended). The katana is the power saver, while the beam saber is better for penetrating armor.
** In addition to the Gerbera Straight, there's the Tiger Pierce (its ''wakizashi'' partner, used by Un'no's GINN until Lowe reclaims it), the Gerbera Straight Vol.2 (the [[{{BFS}} 150-meter version]]), the Vertical Edges (the katana wielded by Mars Jacket), and the Ame-no-Habakiri (a copy of the GS wielded by Mirage Frame).
** A downright [[JustForFun/{{Egregious}} ridiculous]] example happens in ''Astray R'', wherein swordmaster Un No pulls a super-fine CleanCut through the barrel of a mobile suit's beam rifle ''with his hand held katana.'' A normal, human-wielded katana cutting through a HumongousMecha-wielded rifle, with no justification other than the implication that yes, katanas really are just that sharp...and he does it ''twice.''
* KnifeNut: Gai's preferred melee weapon is the Armor Schneider combat knife first introduced on the Strike Gundam; he eventually installs such blades in Blue Frame's legs and feet. Canard's Hyperion uses beam knives as its melee weapon, and has a grand total of five so it can [[ThrowingYourSwordAlwaysWorks throw them if need be]].
* KnowledgeBroker: Kenaf Luchini.
* LighterAndSofter: At least the stories revolving on Lowe's team, and comparing it to the [[Anime/MobileSuitGundamSEED main series]]. There are still the sad fatalities of war, but the major lowering of the kill-rate (particularly thanks to Lowe and Co.'s aversion to killing) along with Lowe and his group's hijinks and eccentricities keep their stories from brooding so much. Some of the mangas even have comic strips at the end of each issue focusing and exaggerating on these lighter aspects of the stories. Gai and his group practically carry the major bulk of the seriousness of the conflicts.
** Brought back in force in ''Destiny Astray R'', where Lowe's main antagonist is a [[TheDandy Dandy]] UnknownRival; quite a change after having him deal with people like the psychopathic Ash Grey.
* MechaExpansionPack: Quite a few, including one that's basically a HumongousMecha in and of itself, which is ''piloted by the smaller mecha''.
** Astray Out Frame is probably the universal champion of {{Mecha Expansion Pack}}s. Originally designed with mounting points for the Alliance's Striker Packs (employed by the Strike Gundam and its descendants), Lowe later builds a "Multi-Striker" that allows it to equip the ZAFT's Silhouettes (for the Impulse Gundam) and Wizards (for the ZAKU and DOM). That's about two dozen options if you include the anime, sidestories, and [=MSVs=].
* MetaMecha: In order to handle the 150-meter Gerbera Straight II, Lowe builds a Power Loader reminiscent of ''Film/{{Aliens}}'', which Red Frame itself docks with. [[spoiler:Regenerate Gundam one-shots the Power Loader, which leads Lowe to create the Powered Red.]]
* PaletteSwap: ''Frame Astrays'' and ''VS Astray'' got flak for discontinuing the ''Astray'' tradition of awesome new mobile suits in favor of taking stuff from the ''SEED'' anime and slapping on a new color scheme (and, in the case of ''VS'', giving it Striker Pack capability).
** The original Astrays started out as palette swaps of each other (Red, Blue and Gold Frames were externally distinguishable only by color), but soon got customized in radically different directions.
* PrivateMilitaryContractors: Serpent Tail, and later [[spoiler:Canard's Mercenary Unit X]].
* PsychicPowers: People said in-series to have heightened spacial awareness actually have these. While the ''SEED'' anime keeps this it somewhat ambiguous, by the end of ''X Astray'' it's obvious that Prayer Reverie and those like him are Newtypes by another name.
* PsychoForHire: Ash Gray.
* PunnyName: Lowe Gear.
** SpellMyNameWithAnS: The official romanization is "Lowe Guele", which sadly destroys the pun.
* RedOniBlueOni: Lowe (Red Frame) and Gai (Blue Frame)
* RuleOfCool: ''Destiny Astray R'' outright says that Junkers prefer the machines they make to be functional ''and'' cool. At one point Lowe elects to use his new Draig Head to illuminate a dark area because it's cooler, and his intelligent computer 8 concedes the point.
* ShoutOut: The Martian Guardshell mobile suits can transform into a [[Literature/TheWarOfTheWorlds tripod form]].
* SpacePirates
* SplitPersonality: Goud Vair from ''Astray'', ''R'', and ''B'', a gentle man who goes psychotic when he hears loud noises (and thus tends to listen to relaxing music all the time to prevent this). ''VS Astray'' introduces [[spoiler:Lily Thevalley]], a Carbon Human made with genetic material from several {{Ace Pilot}}s; this is best illustrated by a title page showing all [[spoiler:her]] clones, each with a different emotion showing on its face.
* SuperPrototype: Red Frame to the M1 Astrays seen in SEED.
* SuperSpeed: Astray Mirage Frame 2nd Issue is extremely fast in brute mode, even coordinator's super human reflex can't keep up with it and the pilot need special modification.
* SupportingProtagonist: Jess Rabble. He barely does anything of any importance throughout the whole of Destiny Astray (aside from serving as a spotter for Kaite Madigan in a battle where all sensors other than the human eye have been rendered useless; [[ThisLooksLikeAJobForAquaman good thing the Out Frame has a secondary observer's cockpit in the head with an actual window instead of cameras]]) and is one of the most boring people on the screen, yet is supposed to be [[InformedAbility special due to his quest for the truth.]]
* SwissArmyWeapon: The Tactical Arms backpacks, seen with Blue Frame Second L and later Red Frame Kai. Blue's changes between Flight, Sword, and Gatling Forms (with the later Tactical Arms II gaining the ability to pull the Gatling and the sword blades off the backpack and use them independently). Red Frame Kai's Tatical Arms II L has Flight, Delta, V, Sword, Arrow, and Work Forms.
* TechnicalPacifist: Lowe; to quote the man himself, "Don't worry, I'm a Junk Tech; I don't kill."
* ThrowingYourSwordAlwaysWorks: Hyperion's Beam Knife/Bayonets. It's actually given five of them specifically so this can be a viable tactic. Lowe does it with the 150-meter Gerbera Straight.
* TokenEvilTeammate: Rondo Mina Sehaku in later stories, most notably Destiny Astray. She obviously hates Lowe and wants revenge for the death of her brother, but frequently works with him if only because of similar objectives. She seems to get less evil over the course of the series, and never was as crazy as her brother, though. After X Astray, Canard Pars plays a similar, if toned-down, role.
* TheUnfavorite: Canard Pars is a product of the same Ultimate Coordinator project as Kira Yamato, but is considered a "failed specimen". His primary motivation in ''X Astray'' is getting an MS powerful enough to challenge the Freedom, then defeating Kira to prove that he's the superior one. Eventually Canard gets over it and mellows out.
* VillainousBreakdown: Rondo Ghina Sahaku does not take losing well...
* WartsAndAll: A less negative example than usual: [[spoiler:Kisato is a huge George Glenn fangirl; thanks to the BrainUploading, she gets to meet the man himself, and is greatly upset that he's light-hearted and goofy rather than the larger-than-life figure she came to admire. George asks her to give him another chance, saying that other people were the ones who built him up as an idol when he's only human. She agrees, but is still put off by his silliness.]]