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Wiki4Games:Style guide

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This style guide has the simple purpose of making the Wiki4Games easy to read by establishing a certain format. One way is often as good as another, but if everyone does things the same way, the articles will be easier to read and use, along with being easier to write and edit. Reading the style guide is important to ensure that each user's edits will be consistent with those of other users.

Content > Style

Okay, we have this big style guide, probably the only persons who ever read it entirely is their authors, and it looks a bit long, annoying, scary, or whatever. Well, despite all these rules, we have another, stronger principle: contributing with a bad style is more useful than not contributing at all. If you have great content to publish, but aren't really good at style (put "I" everywhere, have poor grammar, etc), you should still write it, and someone else will eventually correct the style.

Article titles

Pages must have appropriate titles. Names should all be capitalized properly. Try to make the article's topic the subject of the first sentence in the article. For example, write "Quake 3 is a multiplayer first-person shooter computer game released by id Software..." instead of "id Software released Quake 3, a first-person shooter...". Use boldface for the first (and only the first) appearance of the title.

Roman numerals

All numbers in game titles must be written using the decimal numeral system (for the article page name only), even if the proper game name write them using the roman numeral system. In this case, the article page name will use decimal numerals, and a redirection should be made for the version using roman numerals. For instance, see Unreal II: The Awakening and Unreal 2: The Awakening.

Sections and headings

Separating articles into sections makes them easy to read and navigate. Headings are used to split articles into sections.

Markup

Use two equal signs (==) style markup for headings. Start with ==, add the heading title, then end with ==.

This section's heading was created with the markup:

==Sections and headings==

This subsection's heading was created with the markup:

===Markup===

Wording

  • In a heading, capitalize only the first letter of the first word and the first letter of any proper nouns, and leave all of the other letters in lowercase.
  • Avoid putting links in headings.
  • Make sure that the heading has an appropriate and accurate title, as this is important to help readers navigate the article.
  • Keep headings short.

Text elements

Font colors

Colored font can be used sparingly, though not in very bright colors. For example, you can use a dark color for a warning. Note that light colors will not show up well against the article's white background. The only exception to this rule is when colors are needed as an illustration (for instance in a section about custom colored names).

Invisible comments

Invisible comments are used to communicate with other editors in the article body. To do so, enclose the text which you intend to be read only by editors within <!-- and -->. For example, doing <!-- Hi. --> will be hidden in the article.

Bulleted lists

Bulleted lists can be used, for instance, to list cheats. Don't forget proper punctuation.

Numbered lists

Numbered lists can be used for listing steps in a process.

Bold and italics

Place two apostrophes (''Italicized text'') on either side of a selection of text to italicize the selection. Italics are mainly used to emphasize certain words, though they should be used sparingly. Also note that game names should always be italicized. Italics may make longer phrases or sentences difficult to read.

Place three apostrophes ('''Boldfaced text''') on either side of a selection of text to boldface the selection. Bold is used as a stronger emphasis than italics, although it should be used sparingly as well. The first appearance of an article's title in the article should always be boldfaced.

Place five apostrophes ('''''Boldfaced and italicized text''''') on either side of a selection to use bold and italics in combination on the selection. Bold and italics combined emphasize selections well, but should be used extremely rarely. The only common case in which bold and italics are used together is the first occurrence of the game name which is the same as the page title.

As you can see, bold works well to emphasize sentences as well as short phrases and single words, while italics are a much weaker emphasis for sentences, but work well on short phrases or single words. Bold and italics are used in combination very rarely. Excessive use of any of these text elements will make the entire article difficult to read, so please use them in appropriate situations.

Grammar and spelling

Language

Anything written in this wiki should be in English. The only exception to this rule is user talk pages and (partially) user pages.

Punctuation

Commas, dots, semi-colons, etc, should not be preceded by a space.

Computer units

Please use the standard computer units as mentioned on http://www.patheticcockroach.com/mpam4/index.php?p=5 and as supported by the Committee for Weights and Measures (CIPM) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), i.e.:

  • 1KB = 1,000B
  • 1KiB = 1,024B

For instance, RAM is always measured in MiB/GiB, not in MB/GB. Hard drives, however, are most often measured in GB/TB by manufacturers, while being most always measured in GiB/TiB by software makers. In Windows XP, disk space is displayed as being measured in GB/TB, while it's in fact measured in GiB/TiB.

For more details, see w:Binary prefix#IEC standard prefixes.

Usage and spelling

American English spelling should be used at all times. Common examples of this include:

  • color instead of colour
  • center instead of centre
  • favorite instead of favourite
  • humor instead of humour

See also Wikipedia:American and British English spelling differences

Images

Some general guidelines which should be followed are listed below.

  • If there are too many images in a given article, consider making a gallery with a level two heading.
  • Use captions to explain the relevance of the image to the article.
  • Make large images a thumb.

Uploading images

  • All images should be uploaded along with a properly filled {{Infobox Media}}. Any image which doesn't comply will be deleted. A properly filled Infobox Media contains at least a source, an author and a license. The license should be a template chosen from Category:License tags. If a template for the license you want is not available, leave the license field empty (this will mark the file for review) and write the license you want after the box.
  • The "screenshots" section of an article shouldn't contain more than 20 screenshots. There is no hard limit to the total number of screenshots for a game, but if there are a lot of them, they have to be spread as appropriate around the article, to illustrate where they best fit: they must not be all packed up just "as is" in the screenshot paragraph.
  • The format for lossless picture compression should be PNG. The format for lossy compression should be JPG.
  • Screenshots and game covers should be compressed in a lossy format, unless a lossless compression is obviously more appropriate (an old, low resolution game with few color variations for which a lossless compression is not much bigger than a lossy one).
  • When using lossy compression, please try to optimize the compression as much as possible: use the preview function of your compression software and try to obtain the highest level of compression which keeps a satisfying picture quality. For every picture bigger than 150KiB, you should ask yourself whether you've actually tried to optimize the compression.
  • Please name your files descriptively to avoid confusion. For example if you are uploading a screenshot of the Quake 3 menu, name it Quake 3 - menu.jpg and not just Q3sshot1.jpg or Menu.jpg.
  • Do not upload images we already have. Having multiple images of the same thing does no good and wastes expensive server resources. Before you upload an image, search the wiki if someone has already uploaded a version of it. We don't need [[Image:Quake 3 game cover.png]] if someone has already uploaded [[Image:Quake 3 game cover.jpg]].

Captions

Complete sentences in captions should always end in a period. If the caption is not a complete sentence, it generally should not have a period at the end. Captions should also not be italicized.

Wikilinking

  • Every time an article is mentioned on the page, you don't have to link to every single one. For example, VDMSound may be mentioned five times. You only have to link to VDMSound once. You can link to articles more than once if the page is very long.
  • Use efficient link formats, especially for plurals. For example, do [[platform]]s instead of [[platform|platforms]].
  • When including wikilinks in an article, there is no need to use capitalization or underscores, since the software produces them automatically.

Writing articles

Everyone is encouraged to contribute meaningfully to the wiki.

Ownership and bias

  • Keep personal bias out of articles. Even if "spawnkilling is for noobs" or "Crysis is awesome", we do not need to hear it in the articles.
  • Similarly, Wiki4Games isn't Amazon: do not write an article the same way you would write an advertisement. For instance, copying the game description from some vendor site generally isn't a good idea, not only for copyright reasons, but also for style reasons.
  • Nobody owns articles. This is a wiki, after all. This means words like "I," "we," or "me" should not be included in articles.
  • Do not include specific usernames of players or groups of players in articles.

Facts and trivia

If you have a piece of information or trivia that you would like to add to an article, yet are unsure of its accuracy, leave a note on the talk page of the article so that all editors can discuss it. Do not engage in edit wars on the article page.

Numbers

For numbers a comma should be used as a thousands separator.

Dates

All dates should be written using the ISO 8601 YYYY-MM-DD format (e.g. 2008-04-26) in infoboxes, or (day/month/year, e.g. 26 April 2008) in articles main text. Note that no commas are used in the International format.

See Wikipedia:Wikipedia:Manual of Style (dates and numbers) as well as Wikipedia:Calendar date.

External links

Feel free to link to other sites, like the TrueCombat:Elite home page. However, please avoid linking to too many fan sites: choose a few ones with the best content. For instance a fansite which provides most custom maps and mods for a game is interesting to add, but the website of the maker of a few maps with nothing else than these maps isn't.