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The YSDC Wiki - Editors wanted


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#61 Meyer

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 02:13 AM

Nobody needs to reproduce the ToC book text on the Wiki, and that's certainly not what I was getting at - what I'm thinking of can be achieved by describing the different ways Lovecraft handled specific elements, Derleth's "elemental" version of it, the unique ways that films might handle a similar idea, references to unusual takes to CoC scenarios, etc., summarized as if they were competing theories by different scholars. 

 

Ah...apologies for misunderstanding your intent.  Cool and intriguing ideas, to be sure.  But would it would over-burden or water-down an individual Wiki entry page if the idea was taken too far?

 

I guess I'm wondering what the main focus of a YSDC Wiki page should be.  Brief summary?  One part of a reference library?  Review?  Obviously, if Players read the whole text of any given page the mystery is potentially spoiled for everyone.  What about Keepers who also enjoy their time as Players but also want to use the YSDC Wiki? 

 

Please understand that these are genuine questions on my part and not meant to be contrarian.  I've only done the Mansions of Madness scenarios so far, and tried to be as thorough as time has allowed, but now wonder if I've included too much or too little in adding to the collective knowledge.

 

The scope and totality of the Wiki may have unhinged my mind....




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#62 JeffErwin

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 03:54 AM

For me, when I'm looking at scenarios or literature, I want to know where (and when) it takes place, the villains of the piece, its connections to others stories and adventures, the writer, the publisher, and quirks that make it stand out, for good or bad.



#63 leonardolad

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 11:45 AM

I've noticed on older supplement articles that the "Content" section is often a direct copy of the "Back Cover Text" section. Is there a reason for this? It seems redundant to me. To my thinking, a "Content" section should be more like the index of the book, laying out all the sections it contains. What's everyone's thinking on this?

 

I agree. The way I see it, "Content" should contain the supplement index, and maybe a one sentence description of each section. The "Back Cover Text" heading is there for a reason.



#64 dce

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 01:23 PM

I have a question RE supplement entries that I don't know where to ask about, so I'll just ask here as it seems to have become a general wiki post now :)

 

I've noticed on older supplement articles that the "Content" section is often a direct copy of the "Back Cover Text" section. Is there a reason for this? It seems redundant to me. To my thinking, a "Content" section should be more like the index of the book, laying out all the sections it contains. What's everyone's thinking on this?

 

This is indeed the case ... particularly for most of the *newer* supplements. It stems from the fact that, in the absense of any other readily available information the "contents" section of the supplement Wiki pages has been derived/copied from the publisher's description of the book (usually on their web store or DriveThruRPG). For better or worse most publishers seem to list their product descriptions as verbatim copies of the back cover text of the book (at least where the book *has* a back cover, which some PDFs don't). Although interestingly sometimes they are not *exact* copies.

 

Really, though, I don't imagine anybody would object if you rewrote the contents sections to something else, as long as overall the wiki page still gives a good general overview (somewhere) of what the supplement is like and what material it contains. It's all down to how much effort you're willing to invest in overhauling the hundreds of supplement pages ... if you've got a plan, I'd say go for it.

 

 

Dean (from Adelaide)


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#65 yronimoswhateley

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 01:48 PM

Ah...apologies for misunderstanding your intent.  Cool and intriguing ideas, to be sure.  But would it would over-burden or water-down an individual Wiki entry page if the idea was taken too far?

 

I guess I'm wondering what the main focus of a YSDC Wiki page should be.  Brief summary?  One part of a reference library?  Review?  Obviously, if Players read the whole text of any given page the mystery is potentially spoiled for everyone.  What about Keepers who also enjoy their time as Players but also want to use the YSDC Wiki? 

 

Please understand that these are genuine questions on my part and not meant to be contrarian.  I've only done the Mansions of Madness scenarios so far, and tried to be as thorough as time has allowed, but now wonder if I've included too much or too little in adding to the collective knowledge.

 

The scope and totality of the Wiki may have unhinged my mind....

 

No apology needed; they're good questions, and - I fear don't know the answers yet about whether it will be too much or where too far is.  It's an experiment, and one I've not tried yet, or fully worked out how to get started. 

 

I can say I think I know exactly what you mean about worrying about whether you've been including too much or too little, and about the scope and totality of the Wiki unhinging your mind - I feel exactly the same way.  I keep trying to remind myself that even an earnest step forward is a great help to everyone involved, and gives future writers a starting point to add more:  some of the pages I've worked on were started by other people, and included only page count, title, author, and a short blurb of text from Chaosium's catalog, but even that's a great help.  Yet, it's hard not to look around at all the "rabbit-holes" I could fall into and feel a sense of dread and terror at the thought of getting lost in them and never getting out, while wondering if trying to avoid them is a mistake!

 

For my part, I'll try to stick to a plan:  1.  I'll finish adding the scenario pages first with the amount of detail I've chosen to work with (that's an adventure in its own right, but at least it's been straight-forward so far), and 2. I'll worry about figuring out the monster pages and so on after I've done that, and try the experiment then, unless something that really catches my imagination comes up first. 

 

In any event, I might try the experiment later or even just sleep on, realize it doesn't feel right, and scrap the whole idea:  it wouldn't be the first time something that I imagined would be fun and easy to do revealed itself to be impractical or worse once I start trying to put it "on paper".  Until I cross that bridge, though, it's up in the air - if someone else finds it interesting and wants to blaze that trail before me, I'll be fascinated to hear about how it works out.

 

As for the "Content" section vs. the back cover:  I think I'd want to see both in an article describing the supplement, but I'd expect the back cover text to be a sales pitch, and the "Content" to describe what I'm actually getting:  "Content" is a more detailed and factual account of exactly what I'm getting, while the back cover text is (in theory) meant to suggest why I should be interested in getting the content.  For scenarios, it's somewhat like the way understood the Summary vs. Synopsis:

  • Summary:  "The crew of a mining spacecraft respond to a distress call, and soon learn that, in space, no one can hear you scream."
  • Synopsis:  "(spoilers!)  Sci-fi/horror scenario in the spirit of classic 'B' films of earlier decades like It: The Terror From Beyond Space and The Planet of the Vampires, in which the crew of a mining spacecraft respond to a distress call, find that the signal is coming from an alien space ship, and stumble upon a parasitic alien monster that finds its way into the bowels of the mining ship, where, like a slasher movie, it begins killing the crew off one at a time.  The characters must find the alien and destroy it, before it's too late."  (Different people will have different ideas about how much or how little information to include here, and I think that's alright.)

Edited by yronimoswhateley, 16 September 2015 - 01:48 PM.

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#66 Danial

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 01:53 PM

Really, though, I don't imagine anybody would object if you rewrote the contents sections to something else, as long as overall the wiki page still gives a good general overview (somewhere) of what the supplement is like and what material it contains. It's all down to how much effort you're willing to invest in overhauling the hundreds of supplement pages ... if you've got a plan, I'd say go for it.

 

I have been editing the odd one I come across, but I'm worried that I might offend the originator of the page by altering their work.

 

EDIT: I just noticed your username and I think some of my edits might have been your pages :)


Edited by Danial, 16 September 2015 - 01:54 PM.


#67 yronimoswhateley

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 04:23 PM

Thanks, DCE!  That sounds reasonable - if you have no other information, what else can you do but provide what you know, and hope some with better information clears it up?

 

Danial:  I can't speak for anyone else, but for my part, you can feel free to edit anything I've contributed, I won't be offended (or at least, I shouldn't be offended - if I do get offended at a sincere effort to help, that's definitely not your fault).  It's a wiki, content being edited comes with the territory :-)


Edited by yronimoswhateley, 16 September 2015 - 04:24 PM.

"I would have written a shorter letter, but I did not have the time." - Blaise Pascal


#68 dce

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 11:01 PM

I have been editing the odd one I come across, but I'm worried that I might offend the originator of the page by altering their work.

 

EDIT: I just noticed your username and I think some of my edits might have been your pages :)

 

Chances are that if you've been updating pages for supplements you're editing stuff I originally created -- I think about 80% of those pages were made by me at some point over the past few years.

 

If you've got a logical reason for making a change (and it certainly sounds like you do), you should never feel worried about hurting the original wiki writer's feelings ... after all, the wiki is a living *collaborative* thing. If folks don't like people rewriting their material they probably shouldn't be playing; it comes with the territory :)

 

Keep up the good work guys,

 

 

Dean (from Adelaide)


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#69 Meyer

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 03:11 AM

For my part, I'll try to stick to a plan:  1.  I'll finish adding the scenario pages first with the amount of detail I've chosen to work with (that's an adventure in its own right, but at least it's been straight-forward so far), and 2. I'll worry about figuring out the monster pages and so on after I've done that, and try the experiment then, unless something that really catches my imagination comes up first. 

 

Good plan, and one I'll try to follow as well.  Your "Rabbit Hole" analogy is spot-on...For the Mansions supplement, I created "red-text to-be-completed-later" entries for some stuff that should probably be left as regular text with no potential future page link.  But also established "monsters" (or "races") that have no pages (yet).  Then the OCD kicks in and I think "might as well finish the whole thing now so nobody has to do a second pass-through".  Circles within Circles!

 

One thing that concerns me is too many readily accessible Spoilers.  I love summarizing things to an encyclopedia article-style length that can be useful to others.  However, with "instant information gratification" the seemingly default setting of our Brave New Internet World, I wonder...how much is too much?

 

In the old days, if an obtuse Player wanted to know more about an adventure from D&D or CoC, they'd have to find and buy a copy themselves before they could potentially spoil everyone's fun.  Now...it's just a click away.  The Cookie Jar Syndrome?  "Funny thing how tempting temptation can be..." even if there's a line of text stating FOR KEEPER'S EYES ONLY!  If someone knows they're playing Horror on the Orient Express, they're hopefully most likely to avoid looking for "spoilers" to have the most fun possible...but if they do a casual search and read things they Cannot Un-See, that could be a problem.

 

Personally, I enjoy reading through the scenario supplements just for the fun of imagining running them as Keeper (which I'm hoping to do very soon).  But I know that I could never in good faith be a Player in a scenario I've already read.  I've put my hand in the Cookie Jar already!

 

I'm hoping even more experienced Players and Keepers could chime in on this issue (and thanks to those who have done so already).

 

Should the goal of YSDC Wiki articles be very basic (Player-Centered) or fairly detailed (Keeper-Centered) ?



#70 JeffErwin

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 04:17 AM

Good plan, and one I'll try to follow as well.  Your "Rabbit Hole" analogy is spot-on...For the Mansions supplement, I created "red-text to-be-completed-later" entries for some stuff that should probably be left as regular text with no potential future page link.  But also established "monsters" (or "races") that have no pages (yet).  Then the OCD kicks in and I think "might as well finish the whole thing now so nobody has to do a second pass-through".  Circles within Circles!

 

One thing that concerns me is too many readily accessible Spoilers.  I love summarizing things to an encyclopedia article-style length that can be useful to others.  However, with "instant information gratification" the seemingly default setting of our Brave New Internet World, I wonder...how much is too much?

 

In the old days, if an obtuse Player wanted to know more about an adventure from D&D or CoC, they'd have to find and buy a copy themselves before they could potentially spoil everyone's fun.  Now...it's just a click away.  The Cookie Jar Syndrome?  "Funny thing how tempting temptation can be..." even if there's a line of text stating FOR KEEPER'S EYES ONLY!  If someone knows they're playing Horror on the Orient Express, they're hopefully most likely to avoid looking for "spoilers" to have the most fun possible...but if they do a casual search and read things they Cannot Un-See, that could be a problem.

 

Personally, I enjoy reading through the scenario supplements just for the fun of imagining running them as Keeper (which I'm hoping to do very soon).  But I know that I could never in good faith be a Player in a scenario I've already read.  I've put my hand in the Cookie Jar already!

 

I'm hoping even more experienced Players and Keepers could chime in on this issue (and thanks to those who have done so already).

 

Should the goal of YSDC Wiki articles be very basic (Player-Centered) or fairly detailed (Keeper-Centered) ?

 

This is indeed frustrating, but in most circumstances, it will be Keepers searching for useable adventures that have the most need of the wiki summaries. Of course, if one switches between being a Keeper and player, you don't have a lot of choice about occasional spoilers.



#71 leonardolad

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 11:57 AM

Good plan, and one I'll try to follow as well.  Your "Rabbit Hole" analogy is spot-on...For the Mansions supplement, I created "red-text to-be-completed-later" entries for some stuff that should probably be left as regular text with no potential future page link.  But also established "monsters" (or "races") that have no pages (yet).  Then the OCD kicks in and I think "might as well finish the whole thing now so nobody has to do a second pass-through".  Circles within Circles!

 

One thing that concerns me is too many readily accessible Spoilers.  I love summarizing things to an encyclopedia article-style length that can be useful to others.  However, with "instant information gratification" the seemingly default setting of our Brave New Internet World, I wonder...how much is too much?

 

In the old days, if an obtuse Player wanted to know more about an adventure from D&D or CoC, they'd have to find and buy a copy themselves before they could potentially spoil everyone's fun.  Now...it's just a click away.  The Cookie Jar Syndrome?  "Funny thing how tempting temptation can be..." even if there's a line of text stating FOR KEEPER'S EYES ONLY!  If someone knows they're playing Horror on the Orient Express, they're hopefully most likely to avoid looking for "spoilers" to have the most fun possible...but if they do a casual search and read things they Cannot Un-See, that could be a problem.

 

Personally, I enjoy reading through the scenario supplements just for the fun of imagining running them as Keeper (which I'm hoping to do very soon).  But I know that I could never in good faith be a Player in a scenario I've already read.  I've put my hand in the Cookie Jar already!

 

I'm hoping even more experienced Players and Keepers could chime in on this issue (and thanks to those who have done so already).

 

Should the goal of YSDC Wiki articles be very basic (Player-Centered) or fairly detailed (Keeper-Centered) ?

I think the wiki should be Keeper-centered. At least the scenario category. A place where keepers can look for scenarios that fits his needs. Some kind of venue, some kind of creature, a specific deity, etc, and some description of the scenario so the keeper can decide if this is what he is looking for. We won't be able to stop an obtuse player from find what he wants. If not here, he will definitely find somewhere else, so... I don't think we should limit ourselves because of them. And of course, there will be some honest mistakes, but what more can we do apart from placing a huge, bold SPOILERS - KEEPERS EYES ONLY over the restricted area?



#72 dce

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 12:46 PM

I think the wiki should be Keeper-centered. At least the scenario category. A place where keepers can look for scenarios that fits his needs. Some kind of venue, some kind of creature, a specific deity, etc, and some description of the scenario so the keeper can decide if this is what he is looking for. We won't be able to stop an obtuse player from find what he wants. If not here, he will definitely find somewhere else, so... I don't think we should limit ourselves because of them. And of course, there will be some honest mistakes, but what more can we do apart from placing a huge, bold SPOILERS - KEEPERS EYES ONLY over the restricted area?

 

Some versions of the MediaWiki software do, I believe, support a kind of "spoiler tag" ... which basically hides the text wrapped in the tag until someone clicks to reveal it. When I first started creating scenario write-ups for the CthulhuWiki I, too, was a bit bothered by the possibility of spoilers ruining people's future enjoyment of scenarios. I did try a few tests back then (in about 2012) to see if the version of sofrware used for our Wiki supported the "spoiler tag" ... I concluded it did not. Of course there have been numerous software upgrades since then ... so maybe it's worth someone looking at again? Or maybe it's an option Paul could enable through a Wiki software upgrade?

 

 

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#73 yronimoswhateley

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 03:42 PM

I actually don't mind the spoilers too much. 

 

Of course, I can understand where folks are coming from when they don't want surprise endings and plot twists spoiled, as part of their personal enjoyment of a work of fiction, and I consider the "Spoiler" tag thing to be more for their benefit than anyone else's.

 

In this day and age, however, there's really nothing stopping a determined player from getting all the default goods on a scenario as-written pretty easily - it's not like most in-print scenarios aren't easy to find on the Internet, no doubt "for free" at all the usual suspect file sharing websites.  The "Spoiler" tags aren't going to stop them, and leaving spoilers out of the Wiki won't do much to slow them down, either.  I don't worry about them, though - if they're trying to "win" Call of Cthulhu, they're just not in the right spirit of things (as a player, I actually want to see awful things happen to my characters in ways that make for good stories, it's part of the fun, to me:  it's rewarding to see my evil characters end up in bad situations due to their personal weaknesses and character flaws, and it's equally rewarding for me to see good characters end up in bad situations out of a sense of duty or responsibility or their personal character flaws and weaknesses....)

 

On the other hand, I think that one measure of a good, well-written scenario today should be that it provides a canvas for Keepers to contribute their own ideas and modifications to, so that the same keeper could run the scenario multiple times and have different surprises in store every time.  Even something as simple as provisions for moving a scenario to different settings and eras, a variety of different plot hooks, multiple suggestions for filler material, multiple interpretations of the plot or background information, different options for different character types or play styles, and/or one or two (or more) alternative endings go a long way toward giving a keeper options for putting the sort of unique spin on a scenario that would keep even a jaded player (or keeper-turned-player) who has seen all these scenarios before something new every time.  In fact, in the hands of a Keeper who is happy to tinker with even the most straightforward, railroady scenarios a bit, there really aren't too many ways you can spoil a scenario too much. 

 

If nothing else, perhaps the scenario "Keeper's Notes" section could suggest any opportunities a keeper notices for customizing the scenario in these ways?  (Perhaps that's a project for another day.)


"I would have written a shorter letter, but I did not have the time." - Blaise Pascal


#74 leonardolad

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Posted 06 October 2015 - 04:52 PM

As I'm reaching the end of my editing list, I'll add Cthulhu by Gaslight, Sacraments of Evil and the Delta Green Sourcebook as my future commitments.

 

I have to say that I'm a slow editor, so if anyone feels like doing them, just say the word.

 

Also, I'm finding editing quite addictive :)


Edited by leonardolad, 06 October 2015 - 04:53 PM.


#75 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 06 October 2015 - 10:05 PM

In certain moods, staying up far too late working patiently through edits is exactly the right drug.

#76 Danial

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Posted 06 October 2015 - 10:31 PM

I discovered a cure for wiki addiction. Have your wife break her arm and then have to look after your oxygen-dependent baby on your own (while also taking care of your wife). It worked for me :)

#77 yronimoswhateley

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 02:13 AM

I discovered a cure for wiki addiction. Have your wife break her arm and then have to look after your oxygen-dependent baby on your own (while also taking care of your wife). It worked for me :)

 

Yikes!  I hope everyone makes a speedy recovery, Danial!


"I would have written a shorter letter, but I did not have the time." - Blaise Pascal


#78 Danial

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 02:47 AM

Yikes! I hope everyone makes a speedy recovery, Danial!


Thanks. I think they said 6 weeks originally, and it's been 2 already, so only another month hopefully.

#79 leonardolad

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 02:15 PM

Sounds tough, Danial. I wish your baby and wife a quick recovery. My wife and 16-months old baby girl keep me away from falling into madness reading the forbidden tomes as well, as I work from 8h to 17h and have to be a dad from 18h on while my wife writes her PhD thesis.

 

And I agree with Simmin Beg. Sometimes editing is just the right way to finish your day. That and a glass of Macallan Sherry Oak.



#80 Danial

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Posted 10 October 2015 - 10:33 PM

I have a quick question: What's the point of the "Campaign" template/pages? It doesn't contain any information that's not already in the supplement/scenario pages associated with it.