To date, much of my design work has focused on games that either have no pre-defined setting, leaving you to create it yourself, or give you nuggets of inspirational material and mini-scenarios but without any sense of a wider setting. That’s in part because of my personal preferences, and in part because of my desire to design games that support creativity at the table rather than handing over pre-created stuff.
But I’m increasingly aware that there’s a hunger in much of the gaming community for well-crafted setting material. So I’m thinking hard about how I can give people some of that in my latest project, without locking myself into generating endless setting books.
Anyway: the thing I want your input on is, what do you value in a game’s setting material? What are you looking for overall? Please try to focus on what you enjoy and make use of as a player, not any kind of perspective on what “should” be in a game setting, or the best way to design it.
I’ll give my own views in a comment.