When you say “I am new to Anvil” might need a bit more explanation. Do you mean IC i should give more detail or that there is more meaning than just saying i’m a new player.
“I am new to Anvil” is usually taken to mean that you are a new character and a new player. Stuff will be explained to you, pointed out to you, and you are unlikely to be asked searching political questions about the current ethical course of the Senate…
No further explanation is needed…
If you can read the Winds ( a little, before the game), or get hold of a newspaper (sold in game) you’ll have a conversation opener or two. Even if it is “What the hell…?”
Questions to generate game:
What’s going on?
What have you been up to last season?
Have you been through the Sentinel Gate?
Why are you at Anvil?
Can you suggest a good bar?
Can you show me around your nation?
What does your tabard/flag/tattoo/insignia mean?
Oh okay, thank you that’s very insightful.
Join a group in play if you don’t have one.
- “Hi I just got out the army (pick an army, read where they went over the last year, hello that’s a backstory) and want to settle down somewhere”
- “I am a Questing Knight seeking Nobility and a House” (Dawn only)
- “I am very enthused/upset about (the latest happenings in Winds of Fortune) and would like to find a group of people also wanting to Get Shit Done there” (I did that one. The Marches got cursed and I showed up to angrily investigate the problem using Winter Magic)
- I have a lot of training at magic/religion/combat, but little real world experience. I came to Anvil to find a Mentor"
Find your nation’s advisor archetype and ask one
- The Egregore is there for this everywhere.
- Priests are always good for finding out about plot, because the Synod has great big levers for affecting the game world. You could show up to the National Assembly, or the Virtue Assembly for whichever Virtue your PCs thinks is most interesting. Ask “How can I help” or “How’s this for Virtue?” or “I think I need a hand being better at this Virtue, show me your Opinions”.
- Several nations have a “servant of the nation” archetype The Marches have Landskeepers, Navarr have Vates and Brands for example. Ask to find one and get some direction. Or be one and you have a straight up excuse to be useful,
People with Imperial Titles are always over-burdened with stuff to do and running errangs is a great way to use delegated authority as a reason to talk to people.
- If you’re playing a magician, join a Conclave Order about the thing you like doing. Find if they have a meeting or locate the Grandmaster and say “Hi, I’m new, how can I help”
- Physicks or people with healing spells have the Anvil Hospital.
- IC nerds have the Anvil Library.
- Political wonks have the Imperial Offices, which is a sort of player civil service equivalent.
Okay, thank you very much. I’ll look into finding a group and many looking for a Brass Coast Priest of Prosperity.
Go to the brass coast Assembly and toss a ring in a random direction, you’ll probably hit one.
(do not do this, you might poke someone’s eye or cause a Terrible Priest Scrum)
A Priest Scrum sounds like a great thing, you shouldn’t have told me. Do priest and mages do rituals and stuff for free?
Not if they can help it!!
Depends on your idea of cost though. You might believe that using those skills benefits your nation or the Empire as a whole, just not in monetary results for you at this moment. You might believe you are improving someones chance of navigating the labyrinth and therefore count the cost as necessary.
There is an absolute cost in either mana crystals or Liao, but you may be able to get those as a donation if you can argue your cause well enough.
1: You’re playing a freeborn. At minimum charge 1 ring if you’re asked to do a thing, which is your cultural equivalent of Free.
2: Your PCs skills are tools to push an agenda. I’ve generally done things
- Free of charge where my PC wanted a thing done and would pay for that. I.e. “I want to Insight that suspicious thing”
- At the cost of the supplies or a token labour cost on top where my PC was delighted to see the thing happen but it wasn’t his goal. “Yes I’lI blow up that Vengeance aura for you, you’re welcome. You owe me 1 liao for taking out your trash.”
- For a profit where my PC isn’t otherwise bothered. “Yes, drunk rich Marcher, I’ll charge you a crown for my time if you want me to hallow that potato” “Buy me a pint and I’ll give you advice on that criminal charge”.
Cackling now over the mental image of a group of priests frantically scrambling over each other to pick up the ring
And at the winter one so they’re just wrestling in the mud for the one precious ring that’s brown anyway.
Go to the Hub (big tent), find the boards people are crowding around. Ask them their opinions. Immediate conversation starter. It can snowball from there
Since you’ve specified Freeborn and Prosperity, you could do worse than asking people for thier veiws on what value priestly services are. What is the smooth passage of a soul worth? Should we be payiing you for your skill, or should you be paying us for following your agenda?
(NB I have Opinions IC about this kind of thing and enjoy a good IC argument. Please remember that even if we end up yelling at each other, I respect players, it’s just characters I can’t stand. Or, something, like that)
Take the Magician skill for 2, a Congregation for your personal resource, and save 6 XP. This will let you be flexible in finding a coven to join, get involved with mage politics in the Conclave, and visit the Hub 2-3 times a day to see what the religious issues of the day and summit are.
These things will allow you to say:
- “I’ve been studying magic for awhile, but I haven’t decided what realms I want to specialize in. What are your opinions?”
- “I’m looking to join a coven eventually, but I want to make sure it’s the right fit for me. Do you know any covens that are looking for new members?”
- “I hear there are mage Orders with different goals. Do you know anything about them? Maybe there are some representatives you can introduce me to?”
- “I see some judgements here about [insert topic]. I haven’t really heard anything about it. Do any of you know anything? What are your thoughts on the matter?”
There are also a number of other questions you could ask to get involved with the Senate, Military Council, or Bourse as a mage, priest, or general member of your nation:
- “I’ve always been interested in politics, but I’m not sure where to start with the Imperial Senate. Do you know one of our senators or their proxy? Could you introduce me?”
- “I’m curious about how our nation’s armies are executing the war against the numerous barbarian invasions, and the vallorn. When is the military council meeting? Is there someone on one of our generals’ support staff that could answer some questions for me?”
- “I’m tired of being poor. I’d like to REALLY make some Thrones. Is anyone here involved with the Bourse?”
I was wrestling with a very similar question last event. For context, I play one of the Leaguish generals, so players from my nation who are interested in the military side of the game often speak to me. However, last event was unusual in that (for reasons I still don’t know) I had six characters introduced to me over the course of the weekend in exactly the same way: ‘this is X, they want to be involved in the military game, can you help them?’ Sometimes by the egregore, sometimes by their mates, sometimes on their own initiative.
This got a bit tricky after a while because I was scratching my head trying to think of stuff for them all to do (felt a bit like a quest giver in Warcraft, but resisted the urge to send any of them off to find the livers of six wild boars). Plus I was trying to assess what each of them was really interested in, what they were capable of and how much effort they wanted/were willing to put in. One of the things which came out of this was a realisation that it is much easier for me if people can give me a more specific idea of what they want.
‘Gimme something to do’ is actually kinda hard and takes a disproportionate amount of my time. However, ‘I would like to help the troops going through the sentinel gate by ensuring they have the right potions’ or ‘I want to do military espionage’ are dead easy - I instantly know who to introduce them to, how to get them started and can set them up with a mission. So from my own experience my advice is try to come up with specific areas you might want to target if you can, or at the very least have an idea of what your strengths genuinely are.
I think most of these are no more common in new players, but here a few things that have caused me some annoyance OOC… you may spot a theme:
- Characters telling jokes and similar that only work because of an OOC reference.
- Players (in the IC area, during time in) chatting animatedly about random OOC stuff.
- A character talking about “women-and-children” as a vulnerable group, or using “manly” to mean soldierly, or other examples of gender-based attitudes and expectations: there’s just no way any character who grew up in the Empire would have that kind of worldview.
- People talking IC saying “Jesus!” as an expression of surprise or emphasis (annoying because it’s an OOC thing that makes no sense IC, though I know people aren’t conscious of it and pointing it out to them won’t do any good).
- Or worse yet, “God!” or “For God’s sake!” which IC would be a religious crime… but again, the player almost certainly isn’t intending to play an Idolatrous or Heretical character: https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/List_of_Criminal_Offences#Religious_Crimes
Still, you shouldn’t worry about the occasional slip. I may be a bit more easily annoyed than most, but I still feel these things are minor issues, especially the ones people do by mistake.
Given that you’re the sort of person to have asked in the first place, I’m sure you’ll be fine.
What kind of curses would be better, like if someone has just wasted your money you could say “For the love of Prosperity”?
I’m always a fan of references to the “Six Hells”, but that tends to be reflective of a particular stance on the nature of magic and the realms.
The most common one is something along the lines of “For Virtues Sake!”
The nature of the teaching about the Labyrinth does make “Get lost!” rather more serious than in real life too.
Some ideas here from a League perspective but a few other nations mentioned. IC bravo-ish insults
And an older post: Common IC Expletives
Vardas is a Paragon of Vigilance whose name sounds roughly enough like Jesus you can swap it in as “Vardas wept” etc easily enough.