15 February 2012

Novus RPG Version 0.7

The ‘Open Beta Version 0.7’ of the Novus fantasy role-playing game (from Firehawk Games) is available at RPGNow.

The author of Novus is Tim Dugger, who was one of the main designers of ICE’s well-regarded HARP game (‘High Adventure Role-Playing’), as well as the superb Rolemaster Express book. I’m especially fond of the latter work, as it condensed the core elements of Rolemaster Classic (i.e., 2nd edition) into a succinct 88-page book. Not only was Rolemaster Express a great introduction to the Rolemaster system (certainly the best since the days of MERP), it also helped to debunk the widespread myth that Rolemaster is an overly complicated RPG. (Alas, it no longer seems to be available from the ‘new ICE’.)

Anyone who liked the RPGs of classic ICE should check out Novus. It is a new system – not simply a reworking of old ideas – but its ‘feel’ is very much in keeping with Rolemaster Classic and HARP. (For instance, Novus’s ‘exploding dice’ evokes RM’s ‘open-ended rolls’.)

The ‘text-only’ version is free for the near future, so really, there is no reason not to check it out!


  1. And if anybody has any questions, feel free to ask them here (I will try to check regularly over the next couple of days), or as the Firehawk Games Forums.

    The free version of the rules will disappear around March 1st, as that is the official end of the Open Beta (as before, those who have it will be able redownload a new, non-Beta version of the PDF once the Beta is over).

    -Tim Dugger

  2. I thought that I would mention that version 0.8 is now available for download.

  3. At this point, it is basically version 0.9 (the final Open Beta version), with the actual release version due out next Wednesday (April 12th) if things go well..

    -Tim Dugger

  4. As of Wednesday, April 11th, 2012, Novus is no longer in Open Beta. The final version has been released and is now available.

    Novus is also being prepared for print versions. First, a POD print version to be released via RPGNow, and secondly through Chronicle City (new company formed by Angus Abransom, one of the original founders of Cubicle 7), who will be releasing Novus through standard RPG distribution channels (as well as selling the book from their website), so that it and other FHG products, will be available in your local store...


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I'm a Canadian political philosopher who lives primarily in Toronto but teaches in Milwaukee (sometimes in person, sometimes online).