Games descended from Apocalypse World are amazingly good at emulating and/or interrogating genre. Apocalypse World covers post-apocalyptic fiction, Monsterhearts covers teenage supernatural romance, and Hearts of Wulin focuses on wuxia stories. Because of the whole idea of Moves being triggered by the fiction (“to do it, do it”) people familiar with a game’s genre are generally going to need to know less about the actual Moves because they can just play the characters and have them do genre-appropriate things which will eventually trigger Moves (generally recognized by the MC, but hopefully the other players at the table familiar with the system would feel comfortable pointing those triggers out when they happen too).
Players coming to the game with no knowledge of the genre will have to rely more on the Moves lists because it points them towards actions appropriate to the genre. They will have to actively spend brain power to look at the Moves list while playing to determine what they should be doing, which is going to leave them less brain power to be actively participating/listening.
I am wondering if there are ways we can better support those players new to the genre. Maybe proactively reaching out to them to point them to media they could look over to get a feel for the genre - maybe have that be part of the info you give players ahead of time? (Perhaps part of playbooks themselves?) Perhaps an abbreviated Moves sheet - just with the trigger actions and the names of the Moves? (ie not the actual full text - someone with more system mastery at the table can let them know what to do once their character triggers the Move.)
As I thought this over something else came to mind: there seem to be more and more games based on Apocalypse World coming out these days that either have extremely niche genres or have no pre-existing genre at all. That means people coming to play the game for the first time have a much bigger chunk of work to do at the table. They have little to no genre to fallback on, which means they mostly have to learn the genre from the Moves. In this scenario it would seem that the design of the Moves would need to be a lot more deliberate than in situations where many players can fall back to genre. (Because the designer is basically creating the genre conventions whole cloth via the Moves.)
What have you seen games (or people facilitating games) do to support you both before you get to the table and while at the table when it comes to genre conventions/expectations? How can we do this better? How can minimize the speed bumps lack of genre knowledge creates at the table?