[IC] KAT Napoleonic - Now with Latin American, Eurkey, JIS, and ANSI-JP support | GB Nov 2020

KAT Napoleonic

Inspired by early 19th century history.
Optimized for affordable language compatibility.

Home Page: https://katnapoleonic.com/kat-napoleonic/
Survey: https://forms.gle/REnoicL2PNNU1VJE6

Group Buy November 9th, 2020

Other Links

US English on KBD19X by KBDfans. Renders by Manzel.



On the Ninth of November, 1799 (18 Brumaire in the Revolutionary calendar), a coup d’etat overthrew the French Directorate and replaced it with a new government: a Consulate to be led by General Napoleon Bonaparte. Just a few short years later, he would be crowned Emperor.

To say his rise to power ruffled a few feathers across Europe would be a gross understatement. While he is credited with bringing about positive reforms to the legal and governmental systems of France, his legacy is one tainted by costly, bloody wars across the continent.

Those early decades of the nineteenth century, from Napoleon’s rise to his death, roughly mark the Napoleonic Period, an era that left indelible marks upon the face of Europe and the world.

KAT Napoleonic is a keycap set in the KAT profile that explores the history and artistic depictions of the Napoleonic Period.

US International on Mech27-TKL by Mech27. Render by Manzel.

Neoclassical Typeface

KAT Napoleonic utilizes a modified form of Playfair Display for most of its alpha keys and legend text. It is a serif-based typeface (uncommon in keycaps), and it is inspired by the Transitional and Neoclassical typefaces of the nineteenth century: Baskerville, Bodoni, and Didot.

Wide Affordable Localization

Because of the global nature of Napoleon’s impact on history, a primary goal for KAT Napoleonic has always been wide localization support. While it may not always be practical for manufacturers to support a wider array of languages and layouts in a cost-effective manner, the KAT profile does provide that flexibility.

While this keyset cannot feasibly provide support for every language worldwide, KAT Napoleonic supports more than twenty-one locales in base alpha kits. Kits available include many that are rarely (if ever) seen in the Mechanical Keyboard hobby: Swiss, BÉPO, South Slavic, Tamil, Cherokee, and Canadian French.

Colors & Uniforms

KAT Napoleonic’s primary alpha legends present dark indigo text upon a warm, ivory-like white background. A lower-contrast yellow-gold color is used for alpha key sublegends.

KAT Napoleonic’s modifier keys come in three “uniforms” of color, each inspired by the military uniforms of the era, with particular attention to the Battle of Austerlitz (1805). Austerlitz was a clash of three empires: France, Russia, and Austria. For KAT Napoleonic, you are likewise given a choice of three uniforms: French Indigo, Russian Green, and Austrian White.

Read more about the Colors & Uniforms on Wordpress.


Only a subset of renders are shown here (to keep the page from taking forever to load).
Please visit the Wordpress site to view all renders in full resolution. Alternatively, check out the Renders album on imgur.

S7-Elephant by jacky. Metternich alphas with TKL mods in Austrian White & Novelties. Render by manzel.

Mech27-TKL by Mech27. Waterloo alphas with TKL mods in French Indigo. Render by manzel.

Boardrun CNC by Shensmobile. Uhlan alphas with Ergo mods in Russian Green & Novelties. Render by manzel.

Neuron by walletburner. Pondicherry alphas with Forties mods in French Indigo. Render by manzel.

Abacus by SomeGreekGuy (unreleased). Austrian White numpad kit. Render by manzel.


As is typical for KAT, customers will need to choose a selection of “kits” that together will cover their chosen keyboard(s). For KAT Napoleonic, kits are broken into three major categories:

  • Alpha Kits
  • Core Mod Kits
  • Miscellaneous Kits

Kit Details

Imgur Albums

Alpha Kits

There are 21 different base Alpha kits currently planned. This list is not final, and some locales may be removed, updated, or added based on the results of the Interest Check survey.

Alpha Kits Table

Alpha kits that provide standard US QWERTY characters either in legends or sublegends are noted in bold in the rightmost column.

Except where noted, all Alpha kits use Windows 10 as the basis for all legends. Not all characters produced by AltGr or Shift+AltGr are provided in sublegends, with some omitted to keep kit sizes and prices from ballooning while maintaining compatibility.

The latest images are currently provided in this album:
KAT Napoleonic Alpha Kits

Alpha Kit Subcategory Languages / Locales
Act of Mediation QWERTZ Swiss French & Swiss German
Agustina QWERTY Spanish (European & Latin American)
Alexander Non-Latin Russian, Belarusian, & Ukrainian (US sublegends)
Bernadotte QWERTY Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, Faroese, & Estonian
Bépoleon Nonaparte Alternative French BÉPO
BlĂĽcher QWERTY Eurkey v1.2 & v1.3 (US primary legends)
Chateauguay QWERTY Combined Canadian Multilingual & Canadian French
Doppelkaiser QWERTZ Combined South Slavic Latin & Hungarian
Jefferson QWERTY US English
Jonathan Strange Alternative Colemak, Asset, Norman, & Workman
Joséphine AZERTY French (Windows)
Karađorđe Non-Latin South Slavic Cyrillic (Latin QWERTZ sublegends)
Marie Louise AZERTY French (Apple) & Belgian French
Metternich QWERTZ German & Austrian
Mr Norrell Alternative Dvorak (US & UK English)
Nagasaki Non-Latin Japanese JIS & ANSI-JP with Katakana (US primary legends included)
Pondicherry Non-Latin Indian Tamil (Tamil 99)
Sequoyah Non-Latin Cherokee Nation (US English sublegends)
Uhlan QWERTY Combined Polish & Lithuanian (US English primary legends)
Waterloo QWERTY US International (Netherlands)
Wellington QWERTY UK English & Irish

Core Modifier Kits

There are five core modifier kits for KAT Napoleonic, each provided with two-or-three colored “uniform” options: French Indigo, Russian Green, or Austrian White. Each core modifier kit also comes with a custom set of military-themed novelty keys: Retreat, Attack, Support, and Hold.

Core Mod Kits on Wordpress

Some boards require one of the additional Miscellaneous Kits (e.g. Spacebars) for complete coverage. See the shopping list for examples.

Core Mod Kits Table

Miscellaneous Kits

Miscellaneous Kits on Wordpress

Further Information

As has been noted several times, complete information about this keyset can be found on the KAT Napoleonic Home Page on Wordpress: (https://tinyurl.com/kat-napoleonic).

Physical Color Standards

KAT-Nap colors: RAL 5011, RAL 9010, Pantone 7403 U, RAL 6005, & RAL 3031

Colors shown in keyboard renders and diagrams should not be treated as accurate representations of final keycap colors. Manufacturer samples will be checked against physical color decks of the RAL and Pantone standards above. Be aware that some variation is always possible, and these colors are not guaranteed to be exact.

Existing Set Comparison

Early concept diagrams for KAT Napoleonic drew comparisons to GMK Rudy by Warrenified. Because the keycap designer community tends to frown on overly-similar colorways, Warrenified was consulted so as to double-check that we were in fact using different colors.

GMK Rudy (left) comparison to KAT Napoleonic French Indigo mods (right). Render by Ulliam.

Deskpads & Peripherals (WIP)

Visit the Wordpress site for more details.

Minard Deskpad

Tolstoy Deskpad

Copyright & Citations

Creative Commons Derivative Works

The following component designs and icons are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3 (full license text):

  • Austrian Shield Outline. Derivative work based on “Imperial Coat of Arms of the Empire of Austria.svg” by Sodacan @ Wikimedia Commons (https://tinyurl.com/omvdoy9).
  • Bee Monogram. Derivative work based on “Imperial Coat of Arms of France (1804-1815).svg” by Katepanomegas @ Wikimedia Commons (https://tinyurl.com/yd8ezb7p).
  • French Shield Outline. Derivative work based on “Imperial Coat of Arms of France (1804-1815).svg” by Katepanomegas @ Wikimedia Commons (https://tinyurl.com/yd8ezb7p).
  • Minard Chart. Derivative work based on “Minard’s Map (vectorized).svg” by Martin Grandjean @ Wikimedia Commons (https://tinyurl.com/yacwdyvt).
  • Russian Shield Outline. Derivative work based on “Imperial Standard of the Emperor of Russia (1858–1917).svg” by TRAJAN 117 @ Wikimedia Commons (https://tinyurl.com/y7fryjn4).

Public Domain Works Cited

Further Notes

All historical blurbs appearing in kit diagrams are paraphrased from various Wikipedia articles, except for a few selected quotes from:

No intellectual property from the above was used in the design of the actual keycaps or deskmats. Quotes and names used from Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell in kit diagrams are intended as an homage. No endorsement of KAT Napoleonic by Susanna Clarke or Bloomsbury has been given nor should be implied.

All other designs are copyright 2020 by W. Alex Ronke (a.k.a. NoPunIn10Did). All Rights Reserved.


  • Thanks to my wife, the love of my life, who has been very patient and supportive of all my creative endeavors.
  • Thanks to my daughter, who is an absolutely adorable four-year-old and brings so much joy to my life.
  • Thanks to Erik (a.k.a. MK Ultra), who believed in this project while it was still a germ of an idea.
  • Huge thanks to manzel for his amazing and punctual render work.
  • Thanks to Konstantin for all the advice on the particulars of punctuation positioning in legends as well as for drawing the correct Cyrillic J for the KaraÄ‘orÄ‘e alpha kit.
  • Thanks to myKeyboard.eu and HID Technologies for committing to be vendors for this set, and for helping considerably with French conjugation & translation.
  • Thanks to onecreativemind for early advice on the modifier icons.
  • Thanks to Alex Lin at zFrontier for answering my KAT questions and committing to a Group Buy date early in this process.
  • Thanks to Ulliam for providing renders for the J02, the Prime_E, and the GMK Rudy comparison.
  • Thanks to shensmobile for sharing the Boardrun CNC file and for being a good creative sounding-board.
  • Thanks to walletburner for giving us permission to render the Neuron keyboard.
  • Thanks to SomeGreekGuy for sharing the Abacus CNC file and giving permission to render it.
  • Thanks to the members and moderators of the many Discord servers where I’ve solicited feedback for this and other projects, with particular thanks to:
    • 40% Keyboards
    • Keycap Designers
    • Carolina Keyboards
    • Keyboard Atelier

Lovely. I’m looking forward to this. :wink:

1 Like

My interest in obscure keyboard minutiae has already made me a pretty hot commodity on the dating scene.

Now you’re telling me I can combine that with talking about the intricacies of early nineteenth century European political history? I don’t think anyone’s ready for that level of seduction.

Jokes aside, the amount of thought behind this set is unbelievable…keycaps with a citation section!! Also, I love that your interest in historical accuracy still allows for a couple shout-outs to the return of English magic.


There are many who serve the Raven King.

1 Like

wow thats a lot of kits… there are def some fire ones in there

1 Like

KAT Napoleonic: Updated Renders & New Alphas

We are less than eight weeks from the KAT Napoleonic Group Buy, which starts November 9th. I have new renders and alphas to share, including support for JIS, ANSI-JP, Eurkey, and Latin American Spanish.

Render Updates

The post has been updated with new and revised render images. You can also see these on imgur or on the official KAT Napoleonic site.

  • New : the Abacus numpad by SomeGreekGuy ( unreleased ). Shown with the Austrian White numpad kit and the Minard deskmat.
  • Updated : the Boardrun by Shensmobile (IC on Reddit). These renders now show the most up-to-date version of the Uhlan alpha kit, with the Lithuanian legends now shown in red.

Alpha Kit Revisions

Based on survey responses and other feedback, three new kits have been added.

  • Nagasaki
    • Japanese JIS & ANSI-JP layouts
    • Katakana sublegends in gold
    • Compatible with the standard US layout.
    • 3u spacebar included for JIS.
    • Fullwidth / Half-width key included for JIS in all three colorways.
  • BlĂĽcher
  • Agustina
    • Spanish (European & Latin American)
    • Replaces the Murat kit

The Austerlitz and JoĂŁo VI alpha kits have been sidelined at this time due to lack of interest.

24 September Updates

This week, I have a few short updates to share.


I am happy to announce a collaboration with Divine Studios (Discord link). They’re a newer face in the custom artisan scene, and they specialize in aluminum and titanium keycaps. They will be producing a mould to match KAT R4, and I should have a sample to photograph some time before the GB starts.

Deskmats & Mousepads

I have been in contact with a mat manufacturer that can produce the standard 900x400x4 mm mats with stitched edges. Additionally, they can offer other sizes as well as aluminum mousepads.

The following two designs are planned for the 900x400x4mm deskpads. At least one of them will be made in a smaller size as well (probably 600x300x4 mm).

  • Minard - This is an adaptation of a famous map by Charles Joseph Minard. It shows the drastic change in the size of Napoleon’s forces during his invasion of and retreat from Russia in 1812. It is one of the most famous data visualizations in history.
  • Tolstoy - This contains an excerpt from the first chapter of the Russian text of Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace. In it, characters from the Russian aristocracy switch between French and Russian as they discuss Napoleon, Austria, and politics of the early 19th century.

Clothing & More

I am partnering with Keeb Nerd to design official Napoleonic merchandise, including three button-down shirts based on the three colorways: French Indigo, Russian Green, and Austrian White. Samples are en route to my house, and I should be able to get some photos sooner than later! I am also pursuing other types of merchandise like coffee mugs based on the deskmat designs.

Some of these items will become permanent fixtures in Keeb Nerd’s shop, but I’ll be able to share discount codes that are valid during the GB. Those will be announced in my Discord server.

KAT Napoleonic: British Navy Renders and Kit Updates

As announced in the NoPunIn10Key Discord last week, as well as on Reddit, I have added what should be the fortieth and and final kit to the KAT Napoleonic product line: British Navy TKL Mods.

Conone by kindakeyboards. Renders by Manzel.

The British Navy kit was added as a response to popular demand for Indigo-colored mods using either English or icon-only legends. The British Navy uniform will only be available as a single alternative mods kit. Its contents are pared down as compared to the standard TKL kits and do not offer quite the same compatibility; the price will be lower to reflect this.

The British Navy Alternative TKL Mods Kit is fully compatible with the French Indigo Numpad kit for full-size keyboards.

Other Kit Updates

Also per popular demand, the Ortho Mods kit in the French Indigo colorway has been updated to use icon-only legends. Additionally, the Doppelkaiser alpha kit (Hungarian & South Slavic Latin) received a minor correction to account for a mislabeled character.