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July 2009 | August 2009 | September 2009

Subtoc Content Headers

Mock version of my idea in the works on my sandbox.

What I would like to do
  1. Choose an arbitrary number (i.e. four rows of content) to establish the point at which guide ToC's should require modular summarization (this applies to large guides like MMORPGs).
  2. Create a standard set of templates and a usage policy for using and implementing modular, summarized sections of ToCs.
  3. Implement this on MapleStory/Table of Contents.
A summary of related thoughts
  1. Many individual MapleStory pages are exceeding the "warning" limit; in some cases by 3x or more (over 100KB).
  2. The MapleStory guide is our primary traffic generator for the website, so it should be used to set the precedent.
  3. The MapleStory Table of Contents has the capacity to be expanded more efficiently to better organize topics.
  4. Recent edits made by Tenwin9 (talk · contribs) suggest that we should break down certain page headers into more accessible, expanded topics (he focused on Party Quests).
  5. I want to use Subtoc-like templates to minimize the default ToC size, and allow us to expand topics without worrying about spacing issues.
  6. We have never used Subtoc for a topic (i.e. for a column header); only expansions that act like H1 headers.
Why I posted it here
  1. Our community meetings are where we get things done, and that is a rare event that I have trouble attending.
  2. We used to decide things on the Community Portal talk page, but no longer use that page.
  3. Our forums are rarely patrolled or concluded upon because they are separate from the wiki, and I know all of the admins have this on their watch page.
  4. We can use this space to better organize our thoughts using templates if need be.

--Notmyhandle (talk contribs) 06:50, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

I've always thought we could improve our organization a lot by including some helpful JavaScript, but the problem has always been that not everyone has it turned on. Recently I've been trying to find some figures on how many people really surf with JS turned off, but apparently it's not the most reliable thing to track. Most numbers I've seen haven't been any higher than 5%, which seems pretty small to me. Although I wouldn't want to make anything inaccessible to non-JS users, I don't want 95% of viewers to suffer for them either.
The workaround on other wikis is to switch display of collapsible elements to none with JS so that it will just be fully expanded for non-JS viewers. This wasn't necessary in the Header Nav so far, because there was a link to the ToC if someone couldn't get at it with JS. However, by putting hidden content in the ToC itself, even a link isn't going to be helpful. Someone with JS off will have to edit the page to get at a guidepage link, or use the PrefixIndex. The problem with collapsing the elements on page load, is that with slower browsers you're still going to see that huge list at the beginning and you'll have to wait for it to "shrink back up". It's just kind of ugly watching pages adjust themselves while you wait.
Personally, I'm in favor of using more JavaScript, since I feel like most people use it and if they don't, they can always turn it on for our site. If it doesn't interfere too much with certain bots and RSS (if we even have one), would it be too annoying for something server-side to send viewers to a splash page letting them know we use JS elements and how to turn it on in the major browsers? That would help people that have turned it off in the past on someone's advice, but don't know how to turn it back on. On the other hand, would it be too difficult to maintain and load a separate non-JS table of contents for those people? Lastly, if collapsible/expandable elements do get used in the ToC, I suggest we modify the look a bit to differentiate between actual subtocs and normal content expansions. — najzereT 15:10, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
I'm all for supporting this. I'm not sure of the best possible implementation, but almost anything could be helpful.--~Vizeroth · (c)~-- 20:12, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
We have been stymied by visual limitations every time we begin to add "too much" content. I disagree with Najzere in that I don't believe JS is an issue for readers. Those who disable JS know how to enable it, and will be aware of how websites look. We wouldn't be the first website to have content that requires JS interpretation. I used to disable JS so I wouldn't have to see advertisements - when you do this, it changes all websites significantly. --Notmyhandle (talk contribs) 00:23, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

Okay, I used Heroes of Might and Magic V as a testing ground for collapsible elements. I used collapsible tables to solve some of the awkward whitespace issues we were having with {{subtoc}} templates in side-by-side columns. Used with the tables is the toctable template, which adds the "collapsible" class and collapses the tables if they're not on the main page or the Table of Contents page. As you can see on the main game page, the Table of Contents is fully expanded, as is the case with the Table of Contents page. If you look on the one guide page, you can see the tables are collapsed in the Header and Footer navs.

Obviously there are some style issues, like changing the colors and making the top header row different from the specific section header row beneath. Also, the tables aren't collapsing on the expansion pack pages for some reason. Although this wasn't my intention, I'm undecided on whether that's a good thing or not. Anyway, let's discuss it, and if we can work out functionality issues, maybe we can come up with a CSS class to tie in the look. — najzereT 17:21, 4 August 2009 (UTC)

On second thought, I think we only need one page to be fully expanded for non-JavaScript users, so I modified the toctable template to only expand tables on the Table of Contents page. Now the main pages aren't so long. — najzereT 18:19, 4 August 2009 (UTC)
So far I like what I see. Unfortunately I don't have much to add to the discussion, keeping it collapsed on the main page definitely seems to help, and serves the purpose of the elements as I originally understood it. Colors are always a tough decision, but once we have some CSS in place individuals can override them. --~Vizeroth · (c)~-- 20:01, 4 August 2009 (UTC)
Well it's all controlled with CSS so that's not a problem. We just need to tweak it to fit in with the look of current ToCs for BlueCloud. --Notmyhandle (talk contribs) 20:21, 4 August 2009 (UTC)

Made an update to use the toc-table class and simplified the toctable usage:

{|{{toctable}}

Now it's more like how {{prettytable}} is used. The look is less table-like now, so unless everyone decides they like all the lines and boxes like a table, it would be easier to use the existing NavFrame classes with content lists split up by {{col}} templates like the rest of the ToC. Still need input on colors and style if anyone else has some ideas. — najzereT 23:09, 5 August 2009 (UTC)

I've set the width to maximize itself to whatever it is placed into (like divs). This will also center the header for the table. I briefly experimented with aligning the content of the cells to the top, but have had to manually place that in the tables. I also upgraded the size of the headings to match a normal ToC heading (H2). --Notmyhandle (talk contribs) 00:17, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
The table width and vertical alignment are set in the toc-table class, so it won't be necessary to add those if we end up using the table. Also in the class, the size of headings is set at 1.2em (the equivalent of {{h3}}), so it can be adjusted there as well. If you like the plain look for the contents and a simple heading bar, the NavFrame would probably be easier, and the show/hide tag would float right instead of pushing the heading over. If you want to add the CSS to your personal style sheets you can see how it looks. — najzereT 00:55, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
So, as far as I understand the "toc-table" class hasn't been defined yet (I can't find it in any of the CSS sheets, and it isn't loaded when I view a page using toctable). If I'm wrong can you point me to the page? I've added a toctable example to my sandbox for comparisons. --Notmyhandle (talk contribs) 01:31, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
Here you go. — najzereT 04:50, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
Ah that's no fun. You should have just hardcoded it into the template. I had no idea you were holding out on us. --Notmyhandle (talk contribs) 07:52, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
The template only styles the table, so to get to header and normal cell styles, you'd have to turn the whole table into a template or put individual styles directly into the table like you did with the Might and Magic V ToC. Working with the NavFrame class on your Sandbox page, I ran into some difficulties: you can't use {{h2}} or {{h3}} in the header, since they are divs of their own which push the show/hide toggle down off the header bar, and also the show/hide toggle itself is sized relatively (as "smaller"), which is why they're so large in the Sandbox. Lastly, I think the collapsible elements are too big at H2 level, since they're about as big as the subtocs, which separate a whole different game. — najzereT 15:09, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
If you put it in the template you should be able to modify any part of the table... I like the NavFrame. Maybe we should raise Subtoc to H1, as H2 refers to something within an H1 (H1 = article or game, h2 = topic). --Notmyhandle (talk contribs) 19:52, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

Okay, well discussion kind of petered out on this, but I recall NMH saying somewhere that the divs like {{spoiler}} would be better than a table, and I agree. We generally try not to use tables for non-tabular content, and with divs you can use {{col}} like we already do in the ToC, so it fits better. Additionally, I made the {{tochide}} template, which requires no extra CSS to implement, which is nice. About moving the {{H2}} content to H1, well the title of the page itself (Table of Contents, or whatever page it's transcluded onto) already has the H1 level heading under which everything else is supposed to fall, so I don't like using it for sub content. So in an effort to get a usable template out, I say we just go with this collapsible div template for its simplicity and so we don't have to change anything else. If that's all right with everyone, then we can just figure out any style/color/naming issues that may be left and start implementing it where desired. Example on the Phantom Dust guide. — najzereT 18:55, 31 August 2009 (UTC)

Guide inclusion: Spelunky

Sigma_7 requested this guide in June, but never brought it up. This should be put to a vote.

Summary of the game

Spelunky is a 2D, randomized platform adventure where the player plays a spelunker exploring the dangers of caverns (later in the game, I think the setting changes dramatically). Each time you play, the levels and challenges are different, which makes the game very unique and at times frustrating. It looks very similar to older clone games where you run around and try to collect treasure and avoid traps like falling rocks, but the addition of object interaction and destructible environments makes the game very different.

My reasons for inclusion

The reason I'm not jumping into creating the guide is because it has been independently published through the developer's own website. As such, its notoriety is slight, but its popularity seems to be up there. It has a wikipedia page, and a bug reporting forum thread that spans 270 pages and almost a year of communication. I'd say it's obvious that the developer is dedicated to the game, and I've gone ahead and tested it out myself. It plays extremely well, has great sound, graphics, and physics. It's extremely responsive, fun, currently free, has a lot of replay value, and I am surprised to find out that it runs on the Game Maker engine.

Support
  1. Notmyhandle (talk contribs) 23:16, 24 August 2009 (UTC)
  2. najzereT 19:12, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Oppose
  1. najzereT 23:29, 24 August 2009 (UTC)
Comments
  • It doesn't appear to meet any of the Scope guidelines: it's not produced by a recognized company, is not sold commercially, hasn't been rated, has no non-trivial mentions in published sources, and doesn't have a large player base. Why even bring this up when it's clearly not even a borderline case? If you want to have a guide for this game, let's change the Scope policy first. There are plenty of people who have lobbied for less strict inclusion rules, so let's just get a consensus and put this issue to rest already. — najzereT 23:29, 24 August 2009 (UTC)
  • I agree with both Naj and NMH on this. NMH, changing the scope would kill two birds with one stone; we would enable the inclusion of this guide, and also prevent having to generate exception cases every time we find a guide-worthy game, such as you have found. Exception cases lead to users saying "Why your game and not my game?" If you can, try to think of a way to modify the scope so that this game can be included. Procyon 00:41, 25 August 2009 (UTC)
  • * My rational at the was the Spelunky Wikia and the Wikipedia entry indicating at least some notability. Didn't find any non-trivial mainstream coverage, although some notable blogs such Destrucoid and Escapist have covered it. Competing sites such as Gamespot are currently listing Spelunky with stub-level information. In searching the competitor's site, I found exactly one review. And yes, I do want reform for the scope to allow for a more clear-cut decisions that relies on more solid criteria, cause some people aren't sure if they should discretely create a guide for that Online Civ-clone. Of course, since the initial post, I did find a competing wiki that focuses only on FAQs for Indie games. --Sigma 7 01:06, 25 August 2009 (UTC)
    There's no way that we can rule out administrative restriction on this, but I think we should give people and games the benefit of the doubt and just amend the scope to include freeware games... especially seeing as how we are licensed under a free license. --Notmyhandle (talk contribs) 01:44, 25 August 2009 (UTC)
  • Looks like this fits scope now. najzereT 19:12, 26 August 2009 (UTC)