Ultronomicon talk:Editing Essentials

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Revision as of 00:57, 16 October 2004 by Jacius (talk | contribs) (Capitalization convention)
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Now that it's been made clear that we're using general wikipedia neutral voice and all, I still have one question about tenses and timing. From what point in time should we be writing articles? Do we refer to all events in UQM as having already taken place? Example: "The Captain found Earth surrounded by a slave shield." Or from some other temporal point of view? Example: "The Captain will find Earth surrounded by a slave shield." Setting our persepctive to have the entirety of the game in the past makes the most sense to me.

Also, are we using a mostly "out of game" perspective or a mostly "in game" one? The article on humans is awesome for an in game perspective, as is the Spathi Eluder page, but things like the Dreadnought are from a player's perspective. Obviously some entries force themselves in a certain direction (such as anything about FF and PR3 or the publishing history of the game). Frankly, I prefer the "in game" voice.

I think we need to have consistency and that has to be enforced (or at least stated) by the leadership of the site (the folks what own the server), just so that we all know what direction to be working for.

Mmrnmhrm 15:14, 7 Oct 2004 (CEST)

I agree that we need consistency, but I think that any convention should come from consensus among the contributors, and not from any "leader". To achieve consensus, we would need something like the "Village Pump" that Wikipedia has to discuss these issues (but probably with some SC related name). I'll see if I can add the basic structure for something like that in the next few days. -- SvdB 08:41, 8 Oct 2004 (CEST)

I think this page should be as concise as possible, only mentioning the things that differ from Wikipedia or are often done wrong. But it should also be so for the text itself. No extra words if they can be avoided. My reason for this is that it is important that every contributor reads the entire text, and the smaller this page is, the larger the chance that they will actually do that. --SvdB 08:41, 8 Oct 2004 (CEST)

As I see it, there are (at least) two major purposes to the Ultranomicon: to house general Star Control background, history, and other information which deals with the Star Control universe; to house hints, spoilers, credits, links, and other information which deals with the Star Control games.

That being the case, I think it's important to have some separation of the two, particularly so that someone can enjoy reading about the SC universe without spoiling the game. Ideally there might be a separate "Topic (spoiler)" page (e.g. "Spathi (spoiler)") where information such as home world coordinates, the story as revealed during SC2, etc. can be put. The main article would have a line such as "For spoiler information, see [[XYZ (spoiler)]]". At the very least, {{spoiler}} text should be placed in all articles which contain spoilers, either at the top or just before the spoilers appear.

On another note, some consensus should probably be reached about whether or not information from SC3 (aka the Third One) is valid or not, particularly when giving information about the SC2 races which does not appear until SC3 (the nature of the Precursors comes to mind as a potentially controversial issue...). -- Jacius 09:10, 10 Oct 2004 (CEST)

suggestion for annexation

As far as I know, SC3 is not considered Star Control canon, namely because TFB did not write it. As for the segregation of the site, I think that the best way to do it might be to maintain the regular and a spoiler-free section. This is already being done with the game hints section, which doesn't link to alien race pages, etc. This would make maintainence a lot easier, as we wouldn't have to worry about the 'spoiler content' of the main body of work, only about the content of the spoiler-free annex. It could be totally closed, with no links leading out into the main Ultronomicon.

Why would someone want to look up something in the Ultronomicon while they're still playing the game? Only for hints I'd suspect. Having seperate spoiler pages for each subject only makes the Ultronomicon more difficult to use. There are or will be hints pages and walkthroughs which shouldn't spoil things you aren't looking for. It would be good to have some sort of index of these pages though, linked from the main page. I also disagree with placing {{spoiler}} everywhere. If you look up something game related, you can expect to get spoiled (though I guess that should be mentioned on the main page too). We would otherwise be placing these tags on almost each page.

And indeed, SC3 is out, except perhaps for a "Star Control 3" page which mentions SC3 and the history of how it came to exist. But no story info. -- SvdB

I don't know about the majority, but I would want to look up things to learn more about the Star Control universe, for example what happened in the first game. Not everybody who visits this site will a) have already beaten the game or b) be looking for hints or spoilers.

Totally separating the "spoilers" and "no spoilers" sections (e.g. no links between articles in different sections) is not necessary, as long as it is made clear that a page contains spoilers (so as to warn people trying to avoid them). Having a link from the article about Race X to a page containing spoilers regarding this race would only make sense for ease of navigation. The problem that I forsee is somebody unfamiliar with the policy (if there ever is one) putting spoilers on non-spoiler pages, which wouldn't really be prevented by having two separate sections.

Also note that there is a difference between hints ("Race X doesn't like Race Y, and violence may ensue if they were to meet") and spoilers ("To get item P, go talk to Person A at the Nth planet of the system at coordinates X.Y, and say..."). In general, spoilers tell you exactly what to do or what happens, and thus spoil the experience by not letting you explore it by yourself. Hints give you a nudge in the right direction to keep you from being frustrated. (Obviously, I think one is much worse than the other.) I'm not worried about a few hints showing up in the articles, and in fact knowing some general information about something can help you realize a good way to do something.

Of course, this is all assuming that anybody besides me cares about this. If not, spoil away.

Re: SC3; the general consensus (on this site and other SC fan sites) is that SC3 is not canon. I agree, but I think this is the sort of thing that should be mentioned in a "site policy."
--Jacius 06:03, 15 Oct 2004 (CEST)

I don't agree with a 'spoiler' and a 'spoiler-free' section. As I said before, having a regular section with a spoiler-free annex would probably work the best. The point of the regular section isn't to expressly contain spoilers- it's just that information there might 'spoil' parts of the game for someone. I also disagree with the use of SPOILER BELOW. I think that we should have a notice telling readers to assume that articles may contain spoilers unless they are browsing in the spoiler-free section. -Fadookie 06:26, 15 Oct 2004 (CEST)

If you want to make a page without spoilers, it cannot contain any information you learn in the game. That pretty much only leaves what is in the manual. If you would make separate spoiler en non-spoiler pages for each topic, that would leave a short text for each non-spoiler page, and a long one for each spoiler page. Imagine browsing through pages like that when you're interested in the complete picture.

I have on the main page made a clear separation of spoiler and non-spoiler pages. For links to spoilers I have made the templates {{spoilerlink}} and {{spoilerlinks}}. The former is to place behind a single link, the second when a page contains links to spoilers. They should only be used from pages which themselves are considered to be spoiler-free. So for instance there is no reason why the page Project FAQ should not be readable for people who have not jet finished the game, yet it may link to The Ur-Quan Masters, which does not have to be spoiler-free.

-- SvdB 11:36, 15 Oct 2004 (CEST)

Another two cents

  1. I'll add to the overwhelming consensus of "ignore SC3."
  2. If you're coming here and you don't want to know everything about the game universe, why are you here? If you're still playing for the first time, go finish that. If you're having trouble running the game then there's all of one page worth reading (the tech faq). I don't think we should worry about being spoilerful. It's going to happen. The amount of information a player starts with is miniscule and they know that. The one exception I can think of is someone who hasn't played SCI and wants to know what happened there, but even some of that is spoilerish (like the war's results until you've been playing for about 15 minutes) so where's the cut off? I say don't bother. Outside of a few special pages, the Ultronomicon will ruin the surprise of everything in the game and that's OK.

Mmrnmhrm 19:32, 15 Oct 2004 (CEST)

I recant. The need for spoiler-free sections is slim to nil. Perhaps then, policy should be that all pages except a very few should be assumed to have spoilers (and users can add spoiling information on those pages)? The Main Page might simply have a warning along the lines of "Except for the articles listed in Category:Nonspoiler, all articles may have information which might spoil the game for first-time players." In such a case, there is no need for {{spoiler}} to be splatted all over the place :) The spoiler-free pages wouldn't deal with SC Universe at all (except a very brief overview of the first war -- the details are covered in-game by Commander Hayes anyway, and it's true that the game does not assume the player knows anything about the universe at the start), just development stuff and general hints ("Best way to get minerals" and such). The links from the spoiler-free pages to potentially spoiled pages should be marked as such, but there is no need for any marking of links (to either spoilers or non-spoilers) in other articles. --Jacius 21:53, 15 Oct 2004 (CEST)

More agreeing and a different suggestion

With the small number of pages that will be spoiler free I think the logical choice would be to have a {{safe}} template marking all the safe pages, and to make it clear (on the main page) that anything else carries no guarantee what-so-ever about keeping the mystery. Encylopedia aren't really about mysteries. Marking all spoiler links is significantly harder than marking the safe links because the former are so much more rare.

And now I'm off to learn templates so I can enforce my doctrine ;)

Mmrnmhrm 22:18, 15 Oct 2004 (CEST)

That's an excellent point. Marking safe links is definitely the way to go. -Fadookie

Why mark every safe page when it is enough to just let the reader know when he/she is leaving the safe zone?

Also, it may be possible to give safe and unsafe pages a different background color. It would mean that all pages would have to be marked though.

Jacius says: It's only necessary to mark links going from a safe page to a non-safe page. Links to other safe pages are still safe, and no one cares if a page is safe or not if they are coming from a non-safe page. Because of the presumably small number of safe pages, it will be easy to quickly check that all unsafe links on safe pages are marked. Regarding a {{safe}} template: good idea! It makes a lot of sense to put a template on the type of pages that are rare, rather than the type that are common! I'd tell you how to make a template, but I wouldn't want to... spoil it for you ;) (just don't forget to make the template add the page to a category, perhaps "Nonspoilers" or "Safe Pages") If there are no objections, I think this should be mentioned in the "Editing Policy of Now and Forever" so that no one will forget what happened this day! :D *is bopped on the head*

Capitalization convention

I've noticed that many articles have capitalized words in (not just at the beginning of) their titles. I believe Wikipedia policy is to always capitalize the first word (this is pretty much automatic by the software), but only capitalize later words if they are proper nouns (or part of a proper noun). For example, Super Integrated Starship and Alliance of Free Stars are good, but List of Mineral Types is not good. The main reason for this is that if you want to put a link in mid-sentence, it looks weird to have some words capitalized, and you have to type twice as much per link to get it in lower case via labelling. Just a heads up to try to keep them lower case where appropriate. --Jacius 02:57, 16 Oct 2004 (CEST)