Player Character Species

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Player Character Species


Term Name: Species

Description: One of the many types of beings who inhabit the world of Novitas.

Rule Type: Character

Playing characters from various fantastic species is a staple of the genre and Novitas is no exception.


While most of the population of Novitas is human, other species also exist in significant numbers. Four of the nations of Novitas are dominantly non-human. Players may create characters from any of these species as long as they are willing to meet the costuming requirements. Costuming requirements range from relatively easy (such as for elves) to quite complex (for drakes and snow goblins).

A common question from new players is, 'Are there characters that are half one species and half another?'. The answer is that, with one single exception, there are not. There are a couple of reasons for this, but most notably is that we want every species in Novitas to have distinct costuming, and it would be nearly impossible to meaningfully separate a half-elf from an elf (for example).

While there is a small mechanical benefit to playing a different species in the form of an additional free starting language (in addition to common) there are no other mechanical benefits to playing a character from another species.

It is highly recommended (but not required) that your first PC be a human to ease your way into the world. Elves, and Terrans have minimal make-up requirements and have only slightly more complex cultures than humans, making them the next best starting choices.Faekin are fairly easy to do the costuming for, but they also tend to be expensive. Snow Goblins, Drakes and Verdurans are all both difficult and expensive.

For details about any of these species see the world book.


The most populous species in all of Novitas are humans. Humans have no special costuming requirements and gain no mechanical benefits.

Humans in Novitas are most commonly citizens of the Empire of Civen, barbarians from the Dellin Tribelands, and subjects of the Theocracy of Vlean.


There are no dwarves in Novitas. Though dwarves are a staple of the fantasy genre, players can't meaningfully alter their height without getting into caricature. So, instead there are earthkin. The earthkin have a strong affinity for the underground and crafting, the cultural elements commonly associated with dwarven themes.

All earthkin gain the Terran language for free at character creation.

All earthkin have stones growing out of their skin. For simplicity sake the stones molt periodically and grow in different locations, allowing earthkin characters to avoid needing to memorize exactly where their stones are (and to account for when they accidentally fall of during play).

Earthkin should have at least 5 gemstones total, each roughly coin sized, on clearly visible areas of the character's body. This is the face for most characters. All gemstones should be the same color. The color of an earthkin's gemstones can change from game to game but should always be shades of the same base color.


A classic of the fantasy genre, elves are an important part of Novitas. They generally come from either Fionn A'ilean (The Great Forest) or Evenandra. The elves of the Great Forest, sometimes called wood elves, are more wild and nature oriented in their personalities and attitudes. Elves from Evenandra, sometimes called high elves, are more civilized, hierarchical and formal.

All elves gain the Elven language for free.

All elves must wear ear tip prosthetics. These must be affixed with prosthetic adhesive and blended with the surrounding skin using make-up.


Faekin are the desflatendants (either directly or through multiple generations) of Fae and mortal parentage. This means that all faekin are also a second species as well. Frequently this is human, but it can also include elves and earthkin. There are no faekin who are drakes, snow goblins, or verdurans.

Faekin gain one free language at character creation. If their lineage comes from Light Fae they may learn the Sylvan language. Those with Dark Fae lineage may learn the Diabolic language. Should the character be an earthkin or an elf they may take terran or elvish instead. In total they will gain one single extra starting language regardless of which they choose.

Faekin characters must wear colored contact lens and have a matching wig or colored hair. Any facial hair must also be colored to match the contacts. Natural hair colors are not acceptable for this, nor is being bald, hair needs to be present and look 'unnatural'. Once chosen Faekin characters cannot change their in-game hair color through dye or other means, but they can cover their hair up with hoods, cowls or other methods.

If the character is elvish or an earthkin they must ALSO meet the requirements for the respective species.

Snow Goblins

Might makes right to a snow goblin, and the strong are destined to rule the weak. Failing that, the devious will rule the trusting and stupid. Snow goblins possess a fierce sense of honor and personal reputation, and insults or slights are often settled by elaborate duels. Most snow goblins follow their laws precisely, technically. Lawbreakers are punished severely.

All snow goblins learn the Gershan language for free.

Snow goblins all share two distinct traits. They have bright white skin and stark white hair reminiscent of snow.

To play a snow goblin, all exposed real hair must be covered in some manner. This could be directly with a wig, or with a bald cap and then a wig on top of that. Facial hair should be covered with a fake white beard. Any exposed skin must be covered in white make-up. Covering skin can be a desirable alternative to avoid needing to paint it.

Finally snow goblins all have some kind of mutation or unusual trait that is different from character to character. These irregularities don't grant the snow goblin special abilities or penalties. They also are a permanent part of the character's costume and may not be discarded later for convenience. Unique additions and irregularities are highly encouraged and will help a character stand out.

Some sample traits could be: Pointed ears, over-sized noses, fangs, extra limbs, tail, extra eyes, deformities (hunchbacked, etc.), horns, large claws, extra fingers, costume contacts, or severe ritual scarring.

Difficulty and cost depends greatly on the physical irregularities, deformities and mutations chosen. A player who chooses simple deformities such as fangs and horns will find their costume much easier to create than a player who chooses deformities involving prosthetics such as noses, extra eyes, scarring, etc. New players desiring to play snow goblins are encouraged to seek guidance and advice from players who have previously done so.

In order to bring a snow goblin character into play your costuming must be approved by the props and atmosphere marshal (Christina Mevec) first.


Drakes are the offspring of ancient, long missing dragons. While Draconus has been gone for millennia, the once-powerful dragons have suffered, and have atrophied into their present state: that of the humanoid bipedal drakes. Lacking fearsome claws, fangs, or wings, the drakes have turned to magical pursuits to offset their loss of physical power. They are now the foremost practitioners of magic in Novitas. Drakes have no homeland, but live together in monasteries and enclaves throughout Novitas.

All drakes learn the Draconic language for free at character creation.

The single most expensive and complicated species to play is also the rarest.

To play a drake requires a full reptilian or amphibian facial prosthetic which must be worn and blended with exposed skin. All exposed skin must be covered or made-up to match the facial prosthetic. Drake clothing tends toward ornamented and rich fabrics such as velvets or brocades. There are drakes from every background, drakes have enclaves and monasteries in every land.

Due to the great difficulty and expense that goes into building a complete costume for this species, new players desiring to play drakes are encouraged to seek guidance and advice from players who have previously done so.

Bringing a drake character into play requires that your costuming must be approved by the Props and Atmosphere Marshal (Christina Mevec) first.


The newest playable species of Novitas is also a complex one to costume. Verdurans are a plant people native to Novitas and Vargainen. They draw nutrients and moisture from the soil, and do not require nourishment like others.

Verduran's from Novitas begin play knowing the Apian language.

All verduran characters must have all exposed skin painted green or covered at all times. They have natural colored hair, which should have vines woven into it.

Characters from Vargainen

The continent of Vargainen was long thought to be destroyed, but very recently (2022 in real time) it was found to have survived the sundering. Player characters can now come from the continent of Vargainen. To play a character from Vargainen you'll need to learn about a culture that is very different from the cultures of Novitas. Also, your garb will have to meet specific standards as we attempt to define exactly how the people of Vargainen look and appear. You can find more information about Vargainen garb standards here.

Characters from Vargainen can be Human, Elven, Earthkin or Verduran. Snow Goblins, Drakes and Faekin cannot come from Vargainen.

Regardless of the species, characters from Vargainen gain the Andaranian language as a free starting language. This includes humans. These characters gain no other free language skills.

One of the cultural differences is that characters from Vargainen have only very recently learned common. While these characters still gain the common language for free (for simplicity sake), it is advised that they attempt to role-play inexperience and learning it while at the same time avoiding a "foreigner speaking English badly" stereotype.


Character Creation

Creating a player character is relatively simple. First the character needs a name. A background can be submitted for approval, but backgrounds are not required. Players may simply bring a character into play with no background (and optionally writing one later). Characters must select one of the game's playable species to be. Finally each character begins at level 0 assuming they haven't been assigned any experience points yet. This gives 10 skill points to spend. If you use the online character portal it will confirm you are spending those skill points according to the rules. You can print the character sheet generated by the portal and you're all set. Using a pen and paper character sheet is also allowed, but the portal is preferred by logistics. At your next event show the sheet when you check-in and it will get approved at that time.


All languages in Novitas are categorized as common, uncommon, rare, or extremely rare. Common languages are those that are actively spoken by large portions of the population. Each common language has at least one nation on Novitas that currently speaks it. Uncommon languages are those languages either actively spoken but only by cultures that are marginalized in some way or they are no longer actively spoken. Rare languages are only spoken by cultures that do not want others to know their languages or who would be dangerous to learn from. Finally, extremely rare languages have mystical components that make learning them incredibly complex. These languages require more than standard tutelage to master.

All characters in Novitas begin play knowing the most basic of all languages, Common, the general trade tongue of all Novitas. This is at least in part a matter of convenience. Characters who come from the lost continent of Vargainen are not native speakers of Common, and have likely never had any exposure to it. However, as a consideration for allowing player characters to be fun, they are given Common for free anyway. These characters are encouraged to roleplay taking the steps of still learning Common, but each player is free to handle this as they wish. Other characters can at the player's choosing also not know Common if they desire.

Non-human characters begin play knowing an extra language, determined by what species they are. This represents the cultural heritage that character comes from.

Beyond that, any character can learn new common languages by using skill points. Uncommon languages are learned through role-playing skills, most commonly Scholar. Rare languages can be learned with skill points and plot marshal or second (Ryan Green and Donald Tyson) permission after having sufficient opportunity to learn the language through roleplaying. High level scholars also get the opportunity to learn rare languages through that skill without requiring further permission (beyond earning the ability to take the high level role-playing skill).

Many players love adding accents to their characters. As a game we allow accents, but we do generally discourage them. Different regions of the world might logically have different accents. This is a very reasonable assumption. However as an accessibility choice we do not have any interest in forcing all players who wish to make a character from one nation to be able to speak an accent in order to be from that location. This would result in players unable to make a character with the origin they desire, would result in players speaking with terrible forced accents constantly, or players would be stuck making accents that quickly devolve into silliness.

For these reasons we have, as a game, made a conscious choice that we don't have any official accents from any regions of the world. Characters may still add a local accent from their small, not officially supported heritage if they wish, but they should never try to say their accent is how any larger group of people talk.

Garb Influences

KoN is a fantasy game, and not set in a specific historical period so the variety of acceptable garb is wide. Players portraying non-human characters are encouraged to flavor their garb with fantasy elements. The game takes place in the city of Maplewood in the Freelands. Characters don't have to wear garb based on where they are from, they could wear anything appropriate for any number of different reasons. These guidelines are so that if you want to represent being from a particular culture you know how to.

Garb guidelines:

  • The real world time period Novitas samples for historical garb ends roughly around 1500 AD.
  • Civen characters should draw influence from the Roman Empire between 27 BCE – 610 CE.
  • Vleanoan and Evenandran characters should draw influence from medieval western Europe between 1066 – 1500
  • Great Forest and Dellin Tribelands characters should draw influence from central and northern Europe between the prehistoric era – 106 CE
  • Freelands characters wear anything found in any other kingdom.
  • Gershan characters draw influence from China between 1500 BCE – 1644 CE or Japan between 250 BCE – 186 CE
  • Terran characters should draw influence between 610 CE – 1066 CE the "dark ages" of European history.
  • This guide covers the look for characters from Vargainen.

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