There are 7 nations.
There are accents. Mostly like what we consider regional accents, that slightly differentiate people from different nations and different parts of nations. Except for anyone from Skalt. Skalt is the only country that retains a different language from everyone else (It’s why Ana talks so strangely. Well, part if it is because Ana is Ana, part of it is because the structure of her native tongue is different) So people from Skalt can have a much thicker accent.
Skalt has specific meaning to their tattoos. People from Hise sometimes get them as a source of personal expression (or because they drunkenly thought it sounded like a good idea)
Elsewhere…Well, tattoos generally don’t have a good rep in the other nations. They are seen as ‘barbaric’.
A lot of this has to do with the fact that your average person knows next to nothing about Skalt. Skalt generally has their culture/history passed down through oral tradition. They speak a harsh sounding language that few people understand. They are somewhat isolationist and they are proud, so rarely explain themselves to outsiders. This means that your average person (even if they could read, which most of them can not) doesn’t generally have any good sources to learn about Skalt except from rumors and exaggerations.
And on the outside, both Skalt and Hise *do* seem more barbaric. Hise is made up of pirates. That’s not great for PR. Skalt has very strange customs and lives at a technology level far below the rest of the nations.
So it’s pretty easy for people who like the status quo to continue to paint both Hise and Skalt as barbaric, godless, lawless places. Which trickles down to the reaction to things like tattoos.
But other-ing other nations has been a thing most nations have done throughout history (it’s only now starting to backfire thanks to the internet) It helps people be willing to support wars/conflicts if the places you are warring against are ‘wrong’.
Marriages will end up being part of an arcane formula that results in various possible consequences and endings. 
The theory, of course, being that ties between the nations, especially at the high levels, will naturally encourage better relations/negotiations/peace.
The specific way that problem can be helped is a separate issue from marriage.
(In fact, there’s only one conflict that requires a marriage to help resolve it)
The romancing someone from your own country bit will definitely be addressed. In terms of the Sheltered!Princess, it comes up right at the start of week four.
You can romance someone from your own nation, but it will make things more difficult/complicated down the line. Getting your nation’s approval, for instance, will be much harder. A diplomatic marriage is going to be a much easier way to resolve certain issues, so lacking that is also going to give you more work (assuming that’s a goal).
The only place where you can currently marry a woman politically is Skalt. 
There are plenty of other nations that are okay with same-sex relationships (to varying degrees) But they aren’t really common for high-ranking political purposes. 
For instance, Hise is totally okay with same-sex relationships, but there wouldn’t be any reason for someone to politically marry into Hise (with the possible exception of Hamin). And political marriages are an important factor at the Summit. It’s kind of the reason the summit exists which is why it limits some of the gameplay options. 
The world itself is more accepting at large (at least in some places) but high born ladies of political value rarely get to have that kind of freedom of choice. 
There was a detailed post I did on the various opinions re same-sex relationships/marriage here that goes into more detail: http://azalynestudios.tumblr.com/post/106628405561/do-the-seven-kingdoms-allow-gay-marriage-from-the 
- The peerage varies from nation to nation. Address changes depending on Aly's mood.
- The nations all arrange transport, so it shakes out differently every summit. For the sake of trying to keep what you know as a player and what you know as an MC as close as possible, the MC doesn’t travel with any of her nation’s named delegates.
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