N. Robin Crossby

On July 23rd 2008, Robin succumbed to his cancer at a hospice in Coquitlam, BC.

Rest in peace Robin, we'll all miss you.

NOTE: Please direct any further comments on Robin's life and what he meant to you to this thread: http://www.kelestia.com/?q=node/291

Thank you.

Neil's picture

Ken So sorry to hear


So sorry to hear this.

Is there any way for me to pass on my condolences direct to Robin's family?


Ken's picture

I'll try to find out what

I'll try to find out what Sharon would like done and let you know.

talkitron's picture

Many condolences

I am very sad to see such a lion of the RPG movement pass away. Robin's contributions will be sorely missed.

Marduk23's picture


Add my voice to those wishing to pass condolences to family. I'd also ask that you thank them for sharing Robin with us all - it was (and is) greatly appreciated.

Brimstone's picture

Very sad news. I will

Very sad news.

I will remember Robin most from my single brief encounter with him at a gaming convention in San Jose California. He was very light hearted funny. I asked about book recommendations and he suggested Riddle Master of Hed by Patricia A. McKillip.

I will also always remember the look on his face when talking about the "Ignore" matrix on the HarnMaster combat charts. I think I stupidily suggested you can have the option to "Ignore" a weapon strike, but in exchange your next strike on the foe would be an "Ignore". He had a pretty baffled look on his face, but he still explained the rules in a warm and kind manner.

Thanks Robin for all the great works you created. My heart goes out to your family.

jeddak's picture

Sad news

The world has lost one of its brighter lights, and a true RPG innovator. Very sorry to hear the news.

horus's picture

So sad

The master has truly gone home, leaving work for the apprentices to continue.
I salute you.

Dan Bell
Dan Bell's picture

RIP Robin, my thoughts and

RIP Robin, my thoughts and prayers are with your family, your close friends and all us Harnics everywhere. May you find serenity beyond the pale of life.
-Dan Bell

Sigurd's picture

My thoughts are with his family and friends

I am grateful for his writing and imagination.

My thoughts are however, with his real family and close friends who have lost him from their lives. Think kindly on the dreamers that speak of him in the terms of their dream. We can not know his family's loss or the real suffering he went through with his illness. For your very personal sorrows I have compassion and sympathy. I do not know the 'right' thing to say but I would say it.

Outsiders all of us, he touched so many with his dreams.

My condolences.

Bo Vandenberg

GronkGroks's picture

A wish for Robin's family and friends....

...that you remember the good times and forget the bad, life is too short to carry sorrow longer than necessary.

Robin reached out to many people and filled their lives with joy and amazement. He will be long remembered for his intelligence and humor.

I shall lift a Flagon of Ale to his memory tonight and invite his many admirers to lift one as well.
Wish him God-Speed to his personal hereafter and hope it holds half the wonder of his fabled Harn.

John Danzer
The Ancient One...
...a Gronk who Groks

Marduk23's picture


/joins in flagon lifting

(pouring it right now)

To a life well spent.

So few affect so many, so well. I've been GM'ing and World-Creating for 25 years now (still a baby to some, I know), and for the past 12 I've been fortunate enough to have Robin as a role-model. My work, and gaming group(s) have benefited greatly from it.

Although it sounds pithy to say it, a very peculiar bard just appeared in my game-world. Gods help the players that may stumble across him. :-)

Stephen Schuh

cyrion's picture


Thank you, Robin
In 1987 I found Melderyn in a Düsseldorfer Shop. Since then I played in the worlds of Hârn. And I will play on.


Michael Kirschbaum

WarFlail's picture

Rest well in the Blessed Realm, Robin

Very saddened to learn that Robin passed away. Deep condolences to his family.

Robin's memory and gaming legacy will live on.

Bill Gant

LeifM's picture

A Great Man

My deepest sympathy goes out to Robin's family and those who were close to him. We are all fortunate to have stood in the shadow of this creative giant.

BrianSmaller's picture

A glass of wine and a toast.

To Robin!

Thanks for the countless hours of enjoyment Harn has given me and my friends. I first found Harn in the 1980s not long after it was published. I have never left it for long since. Thoughts are with Robin and his family and close friends.

New Zealand

hrafn's picture

A sad day for me

My condolences to Sharon and her family.

I will miss the conversations with Robin.

My Siém guide Robin to the Blessed Realm.

Münster, Germany

Gargun-nock's picture

so sorry to hear this news,

so sorry to hear this news, condolences to family and friends. A genius has left our midst, very sad

Scott Macgregor

Balesir's picture

Farewell, Robin.

Well, rats. I had hoped that my trip to HârnCon this August would allow me to have one more (though possibly final) of far too few face-to-face meetings with Robin, but it seems that the reaper caught up with him before I did :-(

Goodbye, Robin - thank you for a world that has inspired me for over twenty years and inspires me still. I will remember your humour, your imagination and your humanity. Rest in peace.

Rualin's picture


I was never privileged to meet Robin or to let him know what he & Harn have meant to me; I only knew him through his work.

For the last twenty+ years Robin & Harn have been part of my RPG life, ever since I picked up HarnMaster 1st ed as an impulse buy in my FLGS - my life has been brighter for having owned & played Harn, though it seems more than a little darker today. :-(

Please pass my condolences to Robin's family, friends & fellow fans.

Kindest Regards,

CBarbere (not verified)
CBarbere's picture

I was introduced to Harn in

I was introduced to Harn in 1989, and since then there's been very few days where the Misty Isle of Robin's imagination has not been in my mind. Harn has brought happiness to me and many friends for years.

Please pass my condolences to the family as well, Robin will be missed. Thankfully, he will live on across thousands of gaming tables around the world.

Godspeed Robin...


Peter the skald
Peter the skald's picture


I had the good fortune to interact with Robin briefly in 'the tavern'

The subject was maps. We disagreed on some things and agreed on others. To me he showed nothing but polite patience and understanding; with more than a dash of integrity.

I hope I will display such dignity if ever I face the challenges he did.

Peter the Skald.

fsbo's picture

Sad Day, Condolences to his

Sad Day, Condolences to his family.

Rest in peace.

Phil Lucky Cat
Phil Lucky Cat's picture

Great thanks and rest in peace

Thankyou Robin

I received a copy of his Ivinia world setting when in high school and was inspired to write my own homebrew system to adequately capture the quality and complexity of the amazing world he presented me with. I eventually received Harnmaster, which remains my favourite of all fantasy systems for its dedication, detail and verisimilitude.

That Robyn now travels in a universe of his own creation is without a doubt. We casual voyagers can only marvel at his creation, and wish his family every comfort in this time of parting.

Thank you


illiad's picture

Farewell, Robin.

I created an account just so I could post this.

I met Robin in the early- and mid-80s when I began writing for the Harn product line. Robin was very opinionated, but at the same time he was intelligent, very well read and a joy to debate with. I could also tell that there was nothing he loved more than creating his world and telling stories within.

When I learned of his passing I was struck by a profound sadness. Not just because I knew him personally, but because he offered everyone a ticket to his world. That's a pretty cool thing to do.

I offer my condolences to his family, and wish them solace.

J. Frazer

Dicetimo's picture

What a loss!

A great loss for the community. Farewell Robin, I'll miss the inspiration you gave me with your ideas. And strength to Robins family and dear ones.

lilsis's picture

Hi to all and our thanks for

Hi to all and our thanks for all your good wishes.
I was Robins "little" sister and one of his closest friends. The past few weeks Robin never lost his black sense of humour, he even woke me up (I had been staying with him)at 2 am and wanted me to take dictation for this blog. This I did. the following is what he wrote exactly as he wrote it.

"Well I'm sitting in a hospice with a curly up bunny on the edge of the Gaza Strip. That's a lot more unlikely than it sounds. For one thing my sister is holding the bunny"

For all who don't know this is not nonsense there was a wall hanging on the wall which if you screwed up your eyes kinda looked like two bunnies intertwined. Also Robin and Sharon owned 2 bunnies for a while. A fact which he knew I shook my head in disbelief at. Bunnies don't really do anything, except the obvious biological functions. They also don't smell really good while they do it. Needless to say I was not a fan of the bunnies.

He will be missed by all, who knew him.

Thank you all for your support and keep gaming.


blackhorde's picture

Until we meet again ...

I have been so busy this week I did not hear about this until the day after. I will admit to a bit of shock. My condolences to his family who supported a wonderfully creative man.

It is so strange. The MUD we run which is based on Harnworld stopped working the day before last. We kept starting up the server and it kept stopping. Then it wouldn't start anymore. We had to replace the power supply and it is up again this evening.

Your spark will be missed, Robin, but the memory of it cannot be extinguished and will live on.

Spartan's picture

My deepest condolences to

My deepest condolences to Robin's friends and family. Even though I never met him, his works left an indelible mark on my imagination that will never fade. Tonight I shall lift a drink in remembrance. To whichever far-flung reality your spirit voyages to Robin, I wish you well and Godspeed.

-Mark Winkelman

grantdalgliesh's picture

Rest in Peace, Robin

N. Robin Crossby, 1954-2008

Robin and I met in 1978 and collaborated over twenty-five years to create, expand, and publish the finest RPG world setting ever written. Over three million words and hundreds of quality maps and illustrations were published.

Towards the end of Robin’s life, a rift developed between us that originated with CGI’s desire to maintain the status quo and Robin’s desire to introduce new elements into Hârn. This rift grew too wide and deep to be bridged. In 2003 we went our separate ways, Robin publishing materials under the name Kelestia Publications. His new work reflected the direction he wished to go with Hârn.

The Crossby family and the RPG world have lost a giant and a genius.

Tom Dalgliesh
Columbia Games, Inc.

scottyboy27's picture

Rest In Peace

I am deeply saddened by this terrible news. I never met Robin but through his work i feel i have lost a close close friend.

May i pass on my deepest Condolence`s to Robins Family and Friends in this sad sad time.

Will be raising a glass tonight in memory.


dracopticon's picture

Always a great loss, but not an end!

I have a life view that says: this life is only one in string of lifetimes, and it's always sad to lose one's near and dear, but it isn't the end! People who say that haven't really thought life's meaning over, because why should we live through all this for naught? No, Robin and all other who has walked on is now destined for new adventures. Bad or good depends on the audience and the adventurer's own choices. Quest on!

My most heartfelt condolences,

Erik Brickman, Sweden.

Keith Mann
Keith Mann's picture


I knew Robin through many chats and e-mail exchanges, and despite having already prepared myself somewhat as it became clear that the cancer had gained the upper hand, I have been deeply saddened since I heard the news of his passing.

If the measure of a man is in his ability to bring joy and inspiration to others, then Robin was great indeed. Many came to love the world he created, and were moved by Robin's uncomprimising excellence in his work to aspire to make their own creations the best they could be. There is no greater proof of this than the community of Harn enthusiasts and the quality of the work that they create, the level of which puts to shame the vast majority of today's commercial publications.

Robin, thank you. I will miss you.

Daisho's picture

Alas, the bard is gone.

My group and I have explored Harn for 25 years.
To us, it's a place, a home.

Robin made it thus. With help, true, but still his was the creative spark.

Chatted with him through email many times, but never met him. Now, this side of heaven, we shall not see his like again.

To an author of worlds and a fellow dreamer:

I salute you. Rest in peace.

To the family of N. Robin Crossby:

It is small consolation, but the work of your loved one touched me and mine and inspired us to deeds of imagination. My sincerest condolencies.

Craig Black

stewart.bragg's picture


Stewart Bragg

It a sad day for everyone that loves anything to do with Harn. It is a testament to Robin's skill and imagination that of all the roleplaying items I have kept over the years and still use it is his vision of a fantasy world...Harn. May he rest in peace and comfort from all his earthly pains and converse with all the other greats that have gone before him.

Stewart Bragg

Maneus's picture

Rest in peace Robin

I first came across Harn many years ago in a gaming store in Brisbane Australia and soon after myself and others started a Harn campaign that lasted for many years.

Some years later I met Robin in Vancouver and then soon after Robin made the first of many visits to Australia to work on Harn material with myself and others at Auran.

Robin made his final visit to Australia late last year and we toured around the local area as he revisited the areas he had come to love.

For me Robin was an inspiration. Without doubt the most creative and brilliant mind I have come across and I always enjoyed every moment spent with him listening to him tell me all about 'his world'.

When I said goodbye to him last year I knew it would be the last time we would meet and yet he still smiled and said to me 'I will see you again'.

Goodbye my friend, I hope to see you again.

Greg Lane

Ken's picture

Please direct any further

Please direct any further comments on Robin's life and what he meant to you to this thread: http://www.kelestia.com/?q=node/291

Thank you.

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