Traxus talk:Standards

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I created this real fast to document how I am creating things. Any standards we adopt should probably be listed here.

If there is a collision on what standard to use, it can be discussed here. Thanks! MrHen 10:01, 15 Oct 2006 (CDT)

Contents

Dates

Just for style's sake, should there be a standard format for how dates are written (particularly in infoboxes such as Template:Scenario)? --Andrew Nagy 10:19, 9 August 2007 (CDT)

I would say we should use the same format as the timestamps here. 9 August 2007 for example. --Johannes Gunnar 18:12, 14 August 2007 (CDT)
Eh, if we really cared about it enough we would make Template:Date. My opinion is that articles should be consistent in themselves but that we do not need a global date format. Use what you are comfortable writing with and keep the article consistent. Different editors may have different preferences, but as long as we all respect each other then we should not have any major problems. MrHen. 12:47, 17 August 2007 (CDT)
Wikipedia automatically formats dates into a standard as long as you put the date and year in (separate) wikilinks. AFAIK, you can use any format you want for the date part. E.g. 22 Aug 2007. I don't know if that's part of MediaWiki or something special added into Wikipedia. We might want to look into how that's done...it would allow us to have neat features like "This Date In Marathon History". ⇔ ChristTrekker 11:26, 22 August 2007 (CDT)

Given vs. assumed names

It seems like we should have some sort of policy on this. Do we need to give the real people the credit they deserve for stuff wherever possible, or should we worry that some people might not want us to be the first Google result for their names? For example, an illustrator or designer might consider their old Marathon work embarassing and not representative of their ability. --Andrew Nagy 16:29, 14 August 2007 (CDT)

Real names whenever possible. If someone has a problem with it, they'll inevitably contact us and we'll figure out a solution then. --Ecpeterson 19:48, 14 August 2007 (CDT)
Should we assume in general that anyone who's had a map or scenario announced or uploaded anywhere should have an article? --Andrew Nagy 10:09, 15 August 2007 (CDT)
The more the merrier, i would say we should try to cover all the "big names" in the marathon community.--Johannes Gunnar 18:08, 15 August 2007 (CDT)
iawtc --Ecpeterson 23:11, 15 August 2007 (CDT)
Gary Simmons or Gary L. Simmons? The latter seems to be more commonly used on his own site, but it might be more consistent to leave out middle names and initials generally on the grounds that in most cases we don't know whether people have them. --Andrew Nagy 02:45, 16 August 2007 (CDT)
Consistency's more important here; if we have extra initials we can mention in the introduction, like "Gary Simmons, or Gary L. Simmons, is ..." --Ecpeterson 11:19, 16 August 2007 (CDT)
What about when someone's first name is unknown? Would "J. Reginald Dujour" be an acceptable title? --Andrew Nagy 15:48, 20 November 2007 (CST)
I think that would be fine. MrHen. 09:44, 21 November 2007 (CST)
Redirects will take up the slack in name confusions. I agree with the general consensus that the main articles should be at a person's real name. As far as who deserves their own article, I say let the red links speak for us. Link everyone that could theoretically have an article and when someone cares enough they can create the article. The wanted pages page keeps track of what links are missing. MrHen. 12:43, 17 August 2007 (CDT)

Time zone

Currently signatures appear in Central Time, while timestamps on history and special pages appear in UTC. Can this be changed? --Andrew Nagy 10:03, 22 August 2007 (CDT)

I don't know. I'll look into it, but I have my doubts as to whether it's possible. --Ecpeterson 23:54, 22 August 2007 (CDT)
Check your preferences for time. Mine is set to -6 GMT, which is CDT. I have no idea if this effects your signature, but since that is the correct timezone for me I am happy.  :) MrHen. 13:50, 23 August 2007 (CDT)

Singular vs. plural article titles

Quote: "Make the article singular...categories should be plural". It seems like there must be some other exceptions to the first part, given Engine differences between Marathon and Marathon 2. Maybe because the article is presented as a list? Also: "Forge Movie Tutorials" or "Forge Movie Tutorial"? --Andrew Nagy 11:58, 22 August 2007 (CDT)

Proper nouns should not be modified. If you want to make a list of engine differences, then maybe title it 'List of Engine Differences...' and put a redirect on the plural page just in case someone links to it. I believe that this is the way that things are handled on Wikipedia, anyway, and they typically have reasonable standards. --Ecpeterson 23:54, 22 August 2007 (CDT)
Yes, lists would be another exception and should start with the word "List". Also of note, articles should maintain sentence capitalization: "List of engine differences between Marathon and Marathon 2" versus "List of Engine Differences Between Marathon and Marathon 2" and "List of Forge movie tutorials" versus "List of Forge Movie Tutorials". In both examples, the former is the more correct article. If a list is not what is desired, then carefully consider adding the article as a section on a relevant article. "Engine differences between Marathon and Marathon 2" could be a section in an article named "Marathon 2 engine" or "Engine difference" or whatever. (Hopefully you get the idea...) MrHen. 13:47, 23 August 2007 (CDT)
"Forge Movie Tutorials" is a proper noun, though. I'll consider Engine differences between Marathon and Marathon 2 incorrectly titled for now, though. --Andrew Nagy 17:39, 12 October 2007 (CDT)
Oh, is it? My bad. MrHen. 13:17, 14 October 2007 (CDT)

Italics

Proposed rule: Titles of games, stories, films and scenarios should be italicized, but not titles of levels or websites. --Andrew Nagy 17:39, 12 October 2007 (CDT)

Agreed. First instances of levels should be linked, subsequent instances can be abbreviated. Waterloo Waterpark yada yada yada Waterloo yada yada yada. MrHen. 13:19, 14 October 2007 (CDT)
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Addendum: When I said "films" I was thinking these, not this, this or these. I might italicize The 10th Warrior, but not WasDurandal or game film titles/filenames. --Andrew Nagy 17:07, 18 October 2007 (CDT)
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Addendum 2: Let's not start italicizing words within link titles (Marathon Volunteers, Marathon universe, UESC Marathon), as that would be a pain. --Andrew Nagy 15:25, 20 November 2007 (CST)

Ellipses

Technically, the 12th level of Marathon is titled "Shake Before Using…", not "Shake Before Using..." - the ellipse is a single character, not three periods. Does "…" show up as an ellipse on all systems? If so, should it be used in article titles where applicable? --Andrew Nagy 15:55, 20 November 2007 (CST)

I would say use the periods. An ellipse can be represented by "..." and everyone understands what it means. The only difference is that there happens to be a special character that also represents an ellipse. If Marathon used the special character, it would technically be more correct to keep the special character, but I would rather forgo it because it makes searching harder. Someone scanning for references to that level will probably use "..." and most of the links will probably use "..." anyway. MrHen. 09:43, 21 November 2007 (CST)
iawtc --Ecpeterson 10:59, 21 November 2007 (CST)
idwtc --Andrew Nagy 13:37, 23 November 2007 (CST)
JMHO, but use the most correct form as "normative" (the article itself) and use redirects to capture the other cases. How could one tell how the original level was titled, though? "..." and "…" are liable to look very similar, so I doubt visual inspection alone would differentiate. Still, it is clear that an ellipsis was intended and "…" is the ellipsis character. ⇔ ChristTrekker 14:39, 21 November 2007 (CST)
There's a distinction between semantics and presentation; an ellipsis was intended, not necessarily the ellipsis character. If you think the information is important (and I suppose it is), mention it in the article. I am all about keeping confusing things out of article titles since those, as MrHen mentioned, are what will be linked to from other articles and will show up via the search tool. I can't see using the ellipsis character bringing anything to the table except irritation to editors. --Ecpeterson 19:21, 21 November 2007 (CST)
It might be relevant if you want to include information about name changes from here and here, but probably only then. --Andrew Nagy 13:37, 23 November 2007 (CST)
Compare the ellipsis here with the period here. That's from M1A1, though, so it'd be necessary to check the original to be completely sure. --Andrew Nagy 13:37, 23 November 2007 (CST)

The ellipses character apparently works for article titles: Test…. Check the redirect: Test.... Note that the latter page mentions the redirect: "(Redirected from Test...)" So the character is valid and it only alters the real appearance with the redirect notification, which is rather minor. My preference is to just drop the special character because I have a hunch that something somewhere will choke on it, but Safari seems okay. The only reason I see for using the special character is if the original level used it, and that only matters because, well, it does. That being said, it can make copy/paste troublesome, and in my experience I find special characters really irritating to deal with. My original opinion still stands, but at least we know it is possible.  :) MrHen. 13:46, 26 November 2007 (CST)

Addendum: The character shows up as an a, a euro and a pipe on this computer (Firefox under Vista), so it's probably good that we didn't go with it. --Andrew Nagy 19:39, 15 May 2009 (UTC)

I think that has more to do with the move to the new site than the character itself. They always used to work for me, and now they're hosed as you say. ⇔ ChristTrekker 18:51, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

Double redirects

What's the problem with double redirects (like the one removed in this edit)? Personally I find them quite useful when there's a possibility of a page being split into multiple pages or sections; that way all the separate redirects don't need to be changed when it happens. --Andrew Nagy 18:15, 4 February 2008 (CST)

That's why I left the other two, but as for that one in particular, I thought the consensus was that there was no need for a separate article (here). Feel free to revert, I don't feel strongly about it at all, just trying to do a little cleanup since I'm bored(: Doy 18:25, 4 February 2008 (CST)
Double redirects do not redirect properly. Example: PID. Also, searching for "PID" gives the redirect page. Apparently there is a limitation in the MediaWiki software. My hunches tell me it has to do with infinite loops.  :) As such, all double redirects should be fixed. MrHen. 12:41, 5 February 2008 (CST)
It looks like someone fixed PID after you linked it, but okay. --Andrew Nagy 14:28, 22 February 2008 (CST)

Scenario Pages

This is my suggestion for how scenario pages (for example, Marathon 2) should be laid out:

  • Introduction: This may or may not be necessary. The table of contents is, and definitely the scenario template, but beyond that, an introductory paragraph may not actually be necessary. Example: "Marathon 2: Durandal (commonly shortened to "Marathon 2") is the second game in the Marathon trilogy" actually expressly is pretty much all that's needed for an introduction to the Marathon 2 page.
  • Overview: This is where a brief plot summary should be laid out. Try to avoid detailed exposition on each of the levels, or the more minute details of what the player is doing on each level... that would make it not an overview. Just a summary of what happens in the plot. (Point of discussion: should spoilers be an issue here?) If the scenario provides something especially noteworthy, you might want to append that to this section as well.
  • Engine: I don't believe that this is an especially necessary section, though I've seen it in a few scenario pages to date. I believe it's a fair assumption that all scenarios are for AlephOne.
  • Levels: Since I also think that each level deserves its own page, this section should be primarily as a table of contents for these levels, and maybe a brief synopsis of each chapter. Perhaps a descriptive paragraph should preface this section, outlining typical level design, or other notable facts in this regard? I designed the Gray Incident page in this fashion (on Feb 6 2008). In some cases, having a page for every single level may be impractical... so maybe just have this as a simple list with the chapter outlines.
  • Beneath that section, any other notable details for the scenario. An outline of the new weapons or monsters, for example, or other neat bits of history. In good wiki form, "See Also" and "References" should go last, of course.

I pretty much re-wrote The Gray Incident's page in about half an hour using this system. It's neat, it's organized, and while the scenario's main page is short and fairly brief, there are plenty of links to lead it to more detailed content. This prevents the page from being unnecessarily cluttered, and also is a simple system that's flexible for all scenarios, regardless of whether or not they're non-canon or non-conversions.

RyokoTK 22:42 CST Feb. 6 2008

The Engine section was for the Marathon, Marathon 2, and Marathon Infinity pages, which each actually came with proprietary engines with their own unique features. I wouldn't include it on other scenario pages (except maybe EMR ;) ). --Ecpeterson 23:30, 6 February 2008 (CST)
This may be so, but it's not especially relevant now, is it? I would say that at least 99% of current Marathon players play all scenarios through AlephOne. RyokoTK 23:33 CST Feb 6 2008
I'd say it's still important from a historical perspective, at least. Doy 02:23, 7 February 2008 (CST)
It's relevant to me, but we might reach a compromise and put it on its own page; you're right that M2-the-engine isn't particularly related to M2-the-scenario. --Ecpeterson 02:56, 7 February 2008 (CST)

Level Pages

Since there are hundreds and hundreds of levels within the many scenarios (canon and non-canon), this is certainly a page type that absolutely needs a good, simple format. I've already suggested something to this extent. My problems (Feb 6 2008) are:

Map Information
Waterloo Waterpark
Scenario: Marathon 2
Chapter: 1. Lh'owon
Level: 01 Level Index
Overhead map: Waterloo_Waterpark_Overhead.png
Terminals: Terminal:Waterloo Waterpark
  • Lack of a table. I've already proposed one, like this. This provides all of the pedigree information for each level, neatly displayed, as well as keeping some of the more massive sections that exist in some map pages onto separate pages. Remember that the Marathon Story Page already has a fully complete terminal database; if I wanted to read those, I could easily go there, and if I just wanted a level overview, I probably wouldn't want to read the terminals, but if I did, there would be a link here.
  • The full-sized screenshot of the overhead map. It's really big, and I might not want to see this either. They aren't especially helpful as an overview of the level, either -- this is more walkthrough information now, and I do not believe that Traxus is a walkthrough database.
  • Similarly, walkthrough sections are unnecessary. This is more because a walkthrough is not an encyclopedia-type entry; these are usually subjective, as some people have different strategies than others and it's not exactly objective as to whose strategy is better.

I believe that each level page should have the following information, beyond what comes as a result of the table in each page:

  • Brief story summary, including the events of the level and its relevance in the overarching story
  • Notable features of the level
  • Any particularly inspiring screenshots of the level -- if one wants to capture the essence of the level, an in-game screenshot would convey that better than the overhead image. This could be as a captioned thumbnail in the summary section.
  • Any other notable facts (such as the Windows changes in the Marathon 2 levels) that apply to that specific level

This system has several advantages, as far as I can tell (yay, another bullet list):

  • It keeps each page relatively simple; the pedigree information is accessible, but what's probably of more interest is just the generalized overview of the level
  • Consistency, of course; that's the point
  • Keeps each page as "factual" as possible; I realize Traxus isn't exactly Wikipedia, but we should still try to keep it as objective as possible... interpretations, suggestions, and that kind of thing are more fitting for a walkthrough, which I don't think is the point of this site.

RyokoTK 23:28 CST Feb 06 2008

Also, point of possible discussion: are netmaps worthy of their own pages? I would argue that they're not; beyond gameplay, individual netmaps have little to offer except for architectural insight. RyokoTK 23:31 CST Feb 06 2008
Notable packs might be worth mentioning, like Coriolis Loop. Individual netmaps I wouldn't think so. --Ecpeterson 02:56, 7 February 2008 (CST)

References

Is using Wikipedia as a reference okay? MrHen. 14:13, 8 February 2008 (CST)

Redirects

We should probably have some guidelines on which redirects are important to have, which are acceptable and which need to be deleted. The fact that we can't have Artificial intelligence redirect to Artificial Intelligence makes no sense to me at all, especially when the deleted title was more consistent with our current standards than the kept one was. --Andrew Nagy 18:09, 6 March 2008 (CST)

Hmm, that is weird. The reason I had those marked was because using the Go/Search box automatically fixes capitalization quirks. I forgot to check the actual links. Sorry about that... that was completely my fault.  :P MrHen. 10:01, 7 March 2008 (CST)


I made a standard weapon page format

Check it out at the Infinity weapons pages. Here are the links: Fists, Pistols, Fusion pistol, Assault rifle, Rocket launcher, Flamethrower, Shotguns, Alien weapon, Flechette.

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