This answer will not cite experience, because overall, this is not my play style, and when I do want to play something high-prep, I play something else. That being said, I will try to use the rules to prove that the expressed play style of yourself is not beyond what Dungeon World can cater to, because Dungeon World's prep rules extend quite far and your understanding of “non-improvisational” is not so non-improvisational that it would necessarily break games Powered by the Apocalypse.
there are certain specific ways in which you're explicitly allowed to use preplanned material
and you should start by making as much use of them as the rules allow – Let's see how they permit you to do the things you want and where they fall short.
Agenda and Principles.
- Portray a fantastic world
- Fill the characters lives with adventure
- Play to find out what happens […]
This is how you play to find out what happens. You’re sharing in the fun of finding out how the characters react to and change the world you’re portraying. You’re all participants in a great adventure that’s unfolding. So really, don’t plan too hard. The rules of the game will fight you. It’s fun to see how things unfold, trust us.
The other two Agenda items aren't of concern. The third one, at its core, tells you to not presuppose what the characters will do to the world and how the world reacts to that. Once you drop this core tenet, you are very much railroading or playing for an audience – and from your other desires, it's clear that that's not your intention. So actually, this does not mean that your play style is different from DW's. Don't plan too hard, but do plan! (And do keep your Fronts' Stakes open, to remind you of this.)
Sometimes, I like elaborate setpieces, I like tightly woven plots, I like the feeling of a complex world.
Yes! That's an extension of your Principles!
- Give every monster life
- Name every person
- Think offscreen, too
If you look at the description of these and other principles, it's obvious that – while the system does not force you to build elaborate set pieces and close intrigues – they don't put those out of your reach, either: They talk a lot about “the consistency of Dungeon World”, “straightforward outcome of their actions”, set pieces' own complex motivations, “goals or opinions”, and how not everything happens in front of the players, leaving you room to advance plots somewhere else.
Fronts are how you actually plan in Dungeon World, so whe should look at what they provide for your specifications.
You build Fronts, with their Grim Portents and Impending Doom and Dangers. Now your Campaign Front will “only” contain 2 or 3 dangers, and by the rules, you will concentrate on “only” one Adventure Front with 2 or 3 dangers at a time, but that's quite a bit to keep mental track of over one adventure already, and if you can, nothing in the big-picture rules prevents you from ramping up that number and complexity.
Fronts are there precisely there to allow you to
foreshadow future developments and provide shocking revelations
and present well-thought-out moral dilemmas and do all sorts of other things that are difficult in improvisation.
The Grim Portents and the Impending Doom of a front are all about noting down how the future developments look like.
Dangers are the way to provide you with elaborate setpieces and prepare the presentation of well-thought-out moral dilemmas:
A few of the Danger moves (p. 188 ff.) are particularly worth pointing out here, in addition to the fact that Ambitious Organizations are listed as a danger type (in my experience, Ambitious Organizations very much coincide with the type of play you describe).
- Extract a promise in exchange for a boon
- Expose someone to a Truth, welcome or otherwise
- Tempt someone with promises
- Declare war […] without hesitation
- Leave lingering effects on an inhabitant or visitor
But even beyond the specific Danger moves, there are three GM moves that very closely match your implicit moves:
- Show signs of an approaching threat
- Reveal an unwelcome truth
- Tell them the […] consequences and ask
Nothing here says the that the signs, unwelcome truth or consequences need to be improvised. Quite the opposite! Following from your Things to Do (“Exploit your prep”), your Agenda (“Portray a fantastic world”) and your principles (see above), it's very clear that you are supposed to take these from what you have already established and prepared, so it's okay to note down such ideas with your Fronts. Just make sure that you still “Make a Move that Follows” instead of randomly throwing your prep at players!
And don't forget that one of your Moves (not listed there, but by Everything a GM can Do is a Move it is one) is to invent a new World Move, and those can very much elaborate your set pieces, reflect more plot-weaving and give difficult choices, without having to be thought up on the spot.
… Leave Blanks
So, where are the stumbling stones for high prep? And for the moment, I can only point these out and not give you evidence-based advice how much they lead to conflict between your play style and rules Powered by the Apocalypse and how to fix that, please down-vote if you find that disappointing.
Draw maps, leave blanks
When you draw a map, don't try to make it complete.
it says. So if you wanted to fill a complete village to the last detail, you would be working against this Principle. But it goes on to say
As you'll play, you get more ideas and the players will give you inspiration.
That means, a main purpose of this principle is to give yourself as the GM space to expand into when the players surprise you. Given that you want to keep “Asking questions to let players establish setting or details”, you will either have to keep this Principle, or damn players' contributions to meaninglessness, in which case what are you keeping this thing for?
Part of playing to find out what happens is explicitly not knowing everything
This would normally be a thing that I don't associate with high-prep play, but on the one hand, you explicitly want to keep that element, and on the other hand, the explanation of this principle restricts itself to enforcing that you keep the question “What do you do?” open, so there's actually no conflict here. Actually, I'm pretty sure that I will be hard-pressed to find any example of a question “crossing the line” in the DW rules.
If you want to keep “Moves with the ability to affect the fiction in a storylike manner (e.g, declaring the existence of a secret door by rolling well on searching for one)”, you just can't know everything before all such Moves have been used (i.e. at the end of the campaign).
First-session Goals, in particular
- Look for interesting facts
- Use what they give you
These is probably the hardest first-session Goal to do in a high-prep game, because in a high-prep game you likely want to start with some Fronts prepared. For one-shots, I do prepare a front, but I am very willing to only use part or nothing of it if character creation turns out interesting.
I therefore think that the thing that needs most change is the first session, for which you have to radically alter the first session Goals and thus the procedure. From one-shots, where this is very much necessary, as well, I get the impression that it is possible without sacrificing the other things over the rest of the campaign, but I will have to gather evidence on how this actually works.