I was thinking that it would be interesting to start play in UVG as an outlander, so that the player can learn about the setting’s strangeness on the long journey between the Violet City and the Black City along with the character.
You have arrived at the Violet City from a distant, colorless land. Roll or choose the reason the palate of your homeland is so muted.
You have one item that is rich with color, a treasured belonging w/ colors as vibrant as a rainboviathan’s oil.
What is it? What color or colors does it show to your eye?
What do each of these colors make you feel?
How did you acquire it?
If you need to put a touch of flesh on the bones of these backgrounds, here’s a question or two for each result.
What superstitions do you bring with you after living in lands haunted by sentient leeches that eat color?
What do you always have with you in case a color leech attacks?
Did you pray to the Bone Saints or rebel against them undead pantheon?
What bone weapon, tool or utensil did you bring with you from home?
What broken war machines littered the places you played as a child?
What piece of that ancient war did you bring with you?
What do you do every day to show that you are grateful to see the sun, moon and stars in a land without arcane constant cloud cover?
What memento from the Sunless Immortals do you carry with you still?
What do you do every full moon to celebrate your life outside the Sorcerer-King’s influence?
What piece of moontech did you steal from a servant of the Sorcerer-Kings that you carry with you?
What color were the robes, banners and weapons of the wizard who did the most damage to your community?
What piece of the Chromatic War do you carry with you?
If folks need more than that then I recommend Haiku Character History.
I was flipping through UVG and thinking about how I’d make chargen different for this setting. I had this vague ideas that weren’t coming together because they weren’t very good.
I think I’d just use Into the Odd right as it is (XP too). I’d add some spells with magitech/Dying Earth vibes. Learning about how spells work as they roil around in your brain, your skull brimming with arcane power, is part of the learning curve involved in the strangeness of the setting.
I have an idea rattling around in my head about running this game as a 1-on-1 game with my dad, putting his character in charge of security for a merchant caravan. The concept is that this merchant house once lived somewhere between the Violet City and the Black City until their matriarch divided the clan into two, sending one violet-ward and the other black-ward. The mercantile clan’s believes that the only material things they will have with them in the next world is what their merchant caravans sell or trade on the route between these two cities.
Next up, the Caravan Sheet and thinking about how I want to make Cash a stat and abstract some of the math without getting rid of the experience of trading strange goods in weird places to alien folk. I reckon I’ll find the answers I’m looking for somewhere in the triangle between the points of Apocalypse World: Burned Over’s Barter, Burning Wheel’s Resources and UVG’s 1 Sack = 10 Stones = 100 Soaps = 2,500 Cash.
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