I GMed Storn through a solo campaign for a month and now he is GMing me through a campaign set in the same world. It has been really great.
There are these bits that I am enjoying, little details that Storn adds in that make the setting come alive for me. I don't think we need to have an element from each of the five senses...maybe...two. Sight and sound are the easy ones that everyone falls back on.
When my character, Sammesh, was in an ancient barrow, talking to the summoned restless dead spirit of the woman who was buried there with her husband, he described the art and ancient weapons in the barrow and then mentioned that along the walls and the roof there were roots from a nearby tree. For some reason, those roots stood out to me, those are what made the place feel alive and real. I have no idea why that little detail did that.
Sammesh visited his mom and she was talking to two engineers about restoring a fountain and he gave just enough information for me to get some hand-holds onto about the restoration of the statues and allowing water to flow through them again, allowing me to ask for a History roll (FoRKing in Ancient Languages) in order to contribute and start the scene on an interesting note.
Sammesh has a relationship with Papis, the Sorcerer-King's head librarian and also a monk who likes his beer. Sometimes Storn will just come out with neat setting details through beers with Sammesh and Papis (usually while me and Storn are actually sitting at the table, drinking Woodchuck) such as, "Sammesh, did you know that outside of the 13 Cities there are no gods? There are power spirits but no gods as we know them. Isn't that fascinating?"
In games of Shock:, we have minutae about the world, writing them down on slips of paper that little the table and would eventually go into a setting bible if/when we commit to a campaign. But these little details have a place in Shock:, which is nice.
Anyway, I'm just thinking about little details, short, punchy descriptions.
Examples of these are welcome.