One of the biggest challenges facing a Loremaster is not creating the background stories or building the world, but rather how to introduce the intricacies of a setting to the players. In an RPG, the answer is more obvious: dialogue, characters, ambient surroundings, graphics and quests. For a Sci-Fi strategy title however, the lore is no less important, but infinitely more difficult to bring across. Narrow this down to a massively multiplayer sci-fi strategy game and the task becomes infinitely more challenging.
Thankfully, we are assisted here by an extremely powerful and complex procedural generation engine (more on that in a later update!), but there are elements of our setting which need to be handcrafted in order for players to really engage and care about their circumstances.
These are the elements that are most difficult to introduce to players, but we do have something of a blunt object which serves as a powerful tool to do this - Traveller's Guide to Starium XCV, AKA, the wiki. Obviously this isn't the best solution to our problems - players need to leave the game experience to access it, but it does allow us to put the pertinent information in one easily accessible location where it can educate and be used as reference.
At the moment the Traveller's Guide holds information on the various playable races that can be found in Starium XCV, alongside the short stories and artwork which really bring our universe to life. In time, though, it will include more data on game mechanics and other pertinent knowledge needed to get the most out of Starium.
At the moment, most of the editorial work is controlled by the development team. We want to control precisely what information is released there to the public (and so that we can format things as we need), but in time that will be opened up to the public. I am absolutely sure that is when it will really take off as a knowledge base.
One final note, I am particularly proud of are the "Staff Writers" (thank you to Baldur's Gates' manual for that idea). These are characters from within the Starium universe who can give in-character reflections on the Guide. These are particularly potent as they can really bring you into the world with a more personalised touch on a subject - more so when the writers actively engage each other in a discussion! The slow worms come to mind here... it really adds a touch of personality to the project rather than it being just a dry databank.
You can find the Traveller's Guide to Starium XCV here; http://reference.stariumxcv.com/index.p ... =Main_Page
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