Setting information in an rpg is a strange thing. If you have too much and desire to stick to it, setting can get in the way of story telling at the table. If you have too little the game becomes very demanding on player creativity. I think a game needs just enough to fire a player’s imagination. With that balance in mind I designed the “Area” card for seed rpg, take a look. (click for higher rez)
The front describes a general area, in this case a city. The back describes four individual locations in that area. Each location has two scene cues along with NPC profiles players may encounter there.
The descriptions are short and written to inspire the player’s actions. The scene cues help a game master think of appropriate challenges for the location and link to NPCs provided by the game. After the sessions at game storm last weekend I’m convinced these little cards have the perfect balance of information. Every group may start with the same quick descriptions but i’m sure each one will discover a unique world.
Setting information is not just limited to area cards the game also includes cards that cover entire planets or even whole galaxies, in this way setting information will scale, helping player’s tell stories as large or as small as they wish.