Novus
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Rules
rules
Warning System
Our warning system has four tiers to it. Throughout the Guidebook, everything that must be adhered to will have a number after it; any unusual situations that aren't outlined here will be up to staff discretion. All tiers, with the exception of Tier (0) Verbals, will stack against each other. We typically operate on a three-strike policy, but staff reserve the right to make exceptions depending on the severity of the issue at hand.

The only people that will be made aware of these warnings are staff and other members that were directly involved.

  • Verbal (0): If this rule or guideline is broken, you will receive a verbal warning. Verbals do not stack up unless you receive 2+ verbals for the exact same offense. For example: you receive a verbal for retconning then receive a verbal for an oversized image, they will be two separate verbals. However, if you receive two verbals for retconning, it will stack into a Tier (1) offense.

  • Tier (1): Verbal warning, similar to Verbal (0). The only difference is that a Tier (1) verbal is a mark against your record with Novus.

  • Tier (2): Verbal warning, temporary ban from Discord channel, OOC general boards, and temporary loss of the ability to earn site currency.

  • Tier (3): Ban from Novus. We are also free to discuss your transgressions with other site owners if they question us about you.



General
Regardless of how mature our community may be, ground rules are still required. Hopefully the majority of them come as second-nature to you already!

  • Rating: Novus is for intermediate to advanced writers, or those who are willing to learn. We are rated 3L/1S/2V; we strive to keep our site appropriate for those 16 or older. Mature language is permitted, sexual content is not permitted, and violence is permitted. (1)

  • OOC Age restriction: Novus is restricted to those 18 or older (3). Mature 16 and 17 year-olds, reach out to Inkbone (DeviantArt / Discord: inkbone #9064)

  • Respecting others: Always follow the golden rule and treat others the way you'd like to be treated. We want Novus to be a close-knit community; a place to go to de-stress and write. This means we have a zero tolerance policy for bullying, favoritism, harassment, excluding others, all harmful/hateful language, slurs, misgendering/misnaming, or threats. (0-3, depending on severity)

  • Mature topics, both IC and OOC: Threads where sexual activity is insinuated must fade to black. Pornographic material is not permitted. We do not allow the act or implication/allusion of rape/forcebreeding, grooming of minors, pedophilia, incest, or other no-consent fetishes. (2)

  • Trigger warnings: If you're going to write about an allowed but possibly triggering topic (drugs, violence, etc) always consult with whoever you are writing with first. Thread mus be tagged with the [TW] "Trigger Warning" prefix. (1)

  • No cheating: Don't intentionally cheat any of the systems on Novus, such as the milestone rewards, earning Signos or Experience, attempting to manipulate any contests, etc. (2)

  • Universal RP rules: Please follow the four universal role-play rules, as seen in this handy image. No: powerplaying, godmoding, metagaming, or retconning. (1)

  • OOC Account + One account per character: Each member should have their one OOC account plus one account per character, which can be linked to your OOC account via the Account Switcher. Characters must be posted on their respective individual accounts, and sharing accounts between members is forbidden. (0)

  • Minimum word count: We do not have a minimum word count requirement for general IC posts! We prefer quality over quantity, and many of us believe in the "mirror" policy - try to match what your writing partner is putting into their posts. (0)

  • Graphic and Coding regulations: All images, coding, and other resources must have visible artist credits, the member must be authorized to use them, AND they must adhere to Novus' image size restrictions where applicable. Plagiarism and art/design theft is prohibited. (1)

    • Concerning CSS: Internal CSS, such as <*style> tags, overload sites very easily. Thus, they have been disabled on Novus. We do, however, allow you to reference external stylesheets (so long as they don't affect the rest of the coding on Novus)! Need help? Head to the Graphics forum!

    • Strictly no human imagery should be used to represent characters. We want to keep all images strictly equine or nature-themed.

      • Includes face claims, attribributes, body parts (lips, arms, legs), etc. Applies to all aspects of IC accounts: visual references, postbits, signatures, posting tables, etc.
      • You may post human imagery in character moodboards and OOC Accounts, however!
      • Voice claims may be utilized, although they are not exclusive to your character.

    • Avatars: 250 x 250 pixels.
      Profile Banners (the banner image at the very top of your profile): 1200 pixels wide or larger.
      ProfileBit images (the banner image at the bottom of your profile): 1200 x 142 pixels.
      PostBit images (the banner image behind your board post titles): 1200 x 142 pixels.
      All signature images (cumulative size): 750 x 100 pixels or smaller.
      Posting tables: Any height, but no wider than 750 pixels.
      Profile reference images: Any height, but no wider than 1024 pixels.
      Hover Tables: Posting tables that are "hover to view the text" are not allowed on Novus.
      All other images can be any height (as long as it isn't overwhelmingly tall), but shouldn't be wider than 750 pixels.



Activity
Most of our members lead extremely busy lives - college, work, social life, families, and other hobbies are all major components that take up a lot of our time. The great thing is that we understand! Novus is meant to be a reprieve from a busy and stressful life, a second home where you can relax and have fun doing one of the things you're passionate about: writing stories. So our activity checks are few and far between (and not at all post-based) and we do not have any other general activity requirements!

  • Official Activity Checks will happen at the end of every Year Winter, and will run for 1 full IC Season (2 months). There are no IC posting requirements for our activity checks - you must simply 'check in!'

    • Once it begins, it will be announced in the Discord and a PM will be sent out linking to the Official Activity Check thread.

    • Pending accounts are subject to deletion AT ANY POINT (official activity check or not) if they have not been logged into for 3+ months.

    • Staff will not be checking attached accounts to look for activity. We suggest you log into each of your accounts when you visit Novus.

    • If you need an exception made for you during the activity check, please contact staff and explain the situation. We understand!

  • Sovereign Activity: The Sovereign position will not require much additional activity, but it will be easier to keep the position the more active the character is. For more information on how challenges work and what criteria the character will need to meet, see the Fighting section.

    • All Sovereigns are required to make at least one IC event every other season, to promote activity.

    • If the Sovereign makes 11 or more IC posts per month, all challenges will be screened by staff members first to ensure the person challenging has a similar activity level.

    • If the Sovereign makes 10 or less IC posts per month, they will be deemed "vulnerable." This means that it's known throughout the IC world that their position is weak; any challengers will be given bonus points in the resulting battle.

  • Absences: We do not require you to let us know if you'll be gone. However, you will receive exemption from all stealth attempts and up to two weeks of battles and challenges if you post an official absence in the Player Updates forum or Discord #absences channel! Low Activity notices do not qualify you for stealth, battle, or challenge exemptions

  • Character Limits: There is no limit on how many characters you may have, but you must wait 2 real-life weeks in between submitting character applications for acceptance.



Characters
As of April 2021, Novus has officially changed and lifted the majority of our design restrictions, as well as now allowing both equus and cervidae species. Please remember that ANY/ALL afflications characters have must be thoroughly researched, realistic, and represented respectfully!

  • ALLOWED SPECIES

    • Allowed species includes all those that fall under the genus Equus and family Cervidae, as well as fantasy variants of each.

      • Equus species: Horse (ALL species, both domestic and wild), Przewalski's horse, African Wild Ass, Asiatic Wild Ass, Kiang, Grevy's Zebra, Plains Zebra, Mountain Zebra, donkey, mule, hinny, and any variations of such.

      • Cervidae species: Capreolinae New World Deer (Moose, Marsh deer, all Roe deer, South Andean deer, Taruca, all Brocket, Mule deer, White-tailed deer, Pampas deer, all Pudú, Reindeer), Cervinae Old World Deer (Chital, Elk, Red deer, Sika deer, Thorold's deer, Fallow deer, Tufted deer, Père David's deer, Bawean deer, Calamian deer, all Hog deer, all Muntjac, Barsingha, Eld's deer, Schomburgk's deer, Javan Rusa, Philippine deer, Sambar deer, Visayan spotted deer) and Hydropotinae Water Deer.

      • Fantasy species: We also allow kirins, unicorns, pegasus, alicorns, as well as water and land forms for hippocampus and kelpies - all with no items needed. This can apply as fantasy variants of any of the above listed real-life species!

  • CHARACTER DESIGNS

    • Profile appearance descriptions should be at least 100 words in length, reference image or not.

    • All recognizably-equus or cervidae fantasy designs with aesthetic, non-harmful designs aspects can be joined without items. Design aspects do not need items so long as long as they are not harmful or replace species-typical face, leg, hoof, or whole body anatomy.

      • Examples of acceptable design aspects, NO items needed: Unnatural coat colors, flaming mane that cannot burn/does not give off heat, glowing eyes, iridescent or glittery skin, shifting markings, multiple horns, patches of scales and/or feathers, extra long manes or tails, flower/mushroom/etc growths across their body, horn protrusions across their body, gems embedded into skin, oddly placed wings, stone skin, unnaturally colored blood, missing vital organs/hollowed out body, multiple extra appendages (such as 5+ wings, 7+ legs, 3+ tails, 5+ eyes, 5+ ears), dog ears, dragon tail, undead in appearance (undying would still need immortality), omivorous or carnivorous diet, sharp non-venomous teeth, etc.

      • To replace species-typical face, leg, or hoof anatomy, a Minor Mutation item needs to be purchased for each or a Character Pass if you have many. They still must have some overall resemblence to allowed species (e.g. you cannot use a character pass to join a full-on lion). Examples: Paws in place of hooves, unnatural maw anatomy, etc.

      • Design aspects that are harmful to other characters will require a Passive Magic item. Examples: Flaming mane that can burn, venomous fangs, etc.

    • Character ages can be from 2 to 18 years old. Characters can only join as 1 or younger if they are a result from an on-site breeding.

    • Character heights must be between 3 hands (12in/1ft/30cm) and 23 hands (92in/7 ft 8in/234cm).

    • Three free small accessories are allowed upon joining, without needing to purchase an Outfit, Armor, or Accessory item. These include hairties, vines in hair, earrings, bangles, and more as long as they are 16 inches or smaller. Multiples of these items will still be considered one accessory.

      • Weapons must be bought separately. No saddles, bridles, or other functional tack since humans don't exist on Novus.


  • CHARACER PERSONALITIES

    • Profile personality descriptions should be at least 200 words (excluding any list of their positive/negative traits).

    • Personalities should be well-rounded and developed, and we also want them to go hand-in-hand with your character's history.

    • At least 6 positive and 4 negative traits should be easily identifiable. You can satisfy this requirement by simply listing the traits above the description of the personality itself.


  • CHARACTER HISTORIES

    • Profile history descriptions should be at least 300 words.

    • Histories should also be well-rounded and developed. Tell us about their foalhood, their angsty teenage years, their travels, their experiences, and even their feelings. Histories are a mirror into your character's soul, and we want to know all about them!

    • Characters can have been a human in a past life, but must be restricted to equine form on Novus!

    • Both native and non-native characters are allowed! Your character can come from anywhere, including being born on Novus. Make sure you check out the Lore forum to see if other members have created worlds that your character can come from.

      • If you wish for your character to have been a previous Novus Sovereign in their history, confer with staff first.

    • When creating a profile for a character born from an on-site breeding, no history is needed other than who their parents and siblings (if any) are, as well as what year, season and court they were born in. You can add to their history as they age.