Gswiki:Village pump

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Welcome to the village pump, where anyone can say anything about whatever, and people can respond! Yeehaw!

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January 2018

Ringing in the New Year

There's a lot to talk about as we shift from an evangelistic moderator-based source of content to a more purely crowd-sourced content base. This is fairly lengthy - I want to share my perspective. But feel free to skip to the Action: section, if you don't want to wade through the background and proposal justifications.

The efforts of several moderators in getting us to this stage have been essential - I would argue none more so than V, who has put an incredible energy behind getting us this far. Your direct leadership has certainly set the stage for our future contributions, V. I always ask if I've thanked you for all of this, and I never feel it has been enough. So, again - Thank you.

Background: With fewer 'control' mechanisms, and (hopefully) many more contributors, we need to balance out an approach that serves several goals but at the same time may not create the same leverage for maintaining a carefully groomed and curated consistency. We have a style guide, backed by several other documents, which can stand us in good stead, I think. But - I think our (the remaining evangelists) approach to its consumption needs to change its flavor. I would suggest it be used as an enabler for contributions. Whatever we may have thought / tried / positioned it to be, now I feel is the time to convert that over to a sense of enablement. With that, though, comes a need to understand specifically what we're enabling.

A recent discussion with competing goals - in my opinion - recently took place on the Enchant talk page. Those interested can go read it, but at its core I feel is this sense of shifting to crowd-sourcing, and a sense of goals that aren't fully embraced. To be clear - the primary goal that I feel isn't embraced is simply this: GSIV Canon material (GM / Simu provided) is limited and is likely to remain limited. This is particularly true in mechanics behind spells and spell like effects. As long as I can recall, the game has been one of preliminary information released by the GMs (the Canon), followed by significant rounds of player-research to explain / amplify / illuminate the intricacies of our fantasy world.

This thought - the goal to 'require' significant player research - hasn't been categorically affirmed necessarily. But, like any other player research, I would say the proof is in the information freely shared, and the information kept behind the curtain. Given a certain sample size, I think it will withstand scrutiny. And interestingly enough, this thought - the goal - may well be counter to current player members' desires, who can oftentimes get freely shared mechanics information from other games in our genre. Still, and for closing on 3 decades, Gemstone seems to stand alone in this regard. I'm not sure it will change.

Proposal: If we agree that this is fact (not that we like it, mind - that has an entirely different resolution path), then the question becomes - how best to share the information to a reader while maintaining a sense of Canon versus Research. Fortunately, the style guide gives us a partial answer. Those elements of information that are derived by players going forward should be targeted to Research pages. Unfortunately, simply placing the information in a Research category, and linking it, isn't necessarily 'reader-friendly'. Likewise a goal exists to know specifically what is Canon, and perhaps only work from that - meaning the Research information should be 'hidden' unless the reader wants to see it - thus supporting the link approach. It also creates a sense of bifurcation - some pages have it all, some pages require navigation. Our consistency wanes, and we should be interested in maintaining it. To that end, I suggest Labeled Section Transclusion (LST) and perhaps consider collapsing the Research portions until the reader expands them. We already have a number of articles that use Transclusion and a couple that use LST specifically, so I'm confident we can do this.

Action: I will work up a prototype of the concept of LST using a couple of different articles in my sandbox for us to poke holes in the thought that this might be beneficial to the Canon versus Research discussion, continue to support the style guide, and set us up for a rich discussion on what benefits our readers (the most important segment here, bar none, in my view). I will also attempt to lay in a suggested improvement to the style guide about Research pages on the Confirmed, Accepted, and Posited types of player research, so all contributors can gain a sense for how best to position their research. We can discuss how something might be promoted through those categories, and maybe even get promoted to Canon (the concept of GM reviewed / approved) - although I will not be positioning that as a requirement / expectation because - I think such a position is counter to my sense of the GSIV Canon (released) versus Research expectations Simu / GMs hold.

Watch for it! And, please provide your feedback. A pebble now becomes a boulder later, so let's get it all out on the table and start this new year right! DOUG (talk) 13:53, 23 January 2018 (CST)

Doug, thank you for recognizing my efforts. I personally thank you, Zhouy, and Mark for your various forms of help and support over the past 5 years, I would not have stuck it out for this long if not for you three.
I am trying and have been trying for 3 years (since the transfer) to make the wiki both easy (enough) to contribute to, moderate, and read/find stuff at the same time. In addition, we are not and will not be provided with any other documentation, this is it. To quote GM Estild: "We no longer update the spell database on the website. Players should use the wiki." So I beg people to see it from the point of view that everyone in the community has to use it, from the zealous RPers, to the number crunchers, to the people only interested in playing to write scripts, to the casual play-an-hour-a-week person, to someone who has just heard of GS a few minutes prior to visiting the wiki for the first time.
Some new GM in the future will be moderating it and hopefully will have better ideas than I have to balance everything, and I hope that this person gets much more support and less contradiction from senior staff than I have. I was hoping that Mark would leave what he had done where it was because we could have contacted staff and asked if they could verify it, and I was going to edit the Enchant Item page to restore the intended flow of the article while still keeping his work there, because I can certainly compromise and have many times. I'm also open to Research sections like the one Dan put on the Shield Bash page. When they're organized so neatly and marked as research, I'm good with that. But others were not doing that, they were leaving all sorts of unformatted, intermediate information on various mechanics pages, and it was extremely difficult to moderate. Additionally, countless times people have claimed an article was wrong and made premature edits when really they were making simple mistakes.
I really encourage people to put up their research and have them verified by staff, I'm not sure why is so much resistance to that. Combing through the wiki pages and trying to get them right has uncovered a lot of bugs (that have then gotten fixed), cleared up misbeliefs, and opened up communication with the Development team. It's not always fun, it's frustrating, but look at the general success of the site, I think it's been worth it. In the end we all have the same goal of making GS better.
To directly answer your action item (besides the research section on the Shield Bash page above), LST has been used by only a few advanced users and very few regular people are willing to take the effort to figure it out. I think it is fantastic though as it makes repetitive info easier to control, and hope the future GM wiki guru will embrace it. VANKRASN39 (talk) 17:55, 23 January 2018 (CST)

October 2017

Math and Math extensions

I'm unhappy with the current 'image display' limitations experienced when using the Math extensions. As such, I'm working on installing / modifying some templates to allow us to resize on the fly (I hope) or to render simple equations in HTML with spanning rules which will allow for resizing. For those who watch the Template space closely, I've tried to mark them up, but they're not yet ready for prime time. So save me a headache and don't use any of them until I've posted here releasing them. Thanks! DOUG (talk) 19:50, 9 October 2017 (CDT)

Alright. I've created a sample for discussion on the Enchanting Potion page (good formula that runs off the edge of the browser on my system.) Please see this Discussion: Talk:Enchanting potion Interested in the community's thoughts. And as of this moment, there are five new templates copied and adjusted to our use - delimiter-es, ldelim, rdelim, sup and sub. Delimiter template acts as the controller and is called by each the ldelim and rdelim templates (so you probably won't be calling delimiter directly). Ldelim establishes the left side delimiter (with round, vertical, double vertical and square brackets defined), and Rdelim establishes the right side delimiter. Sup and Sub allow for easy superscript and subscript mark-ups (but is not presently set to adjust size of text, so if that's your thing, you'll have to pass that along to sup and sub.) These templates are ready for use, feedback and adjustment - but have a care. The spacing is very tricky to manage. And I do mean very! Recommend you test it in your sandbox first. DOUG (talk) 12:56, 12 October 2017 (CDT)
I've sent an email in response. Please use the math display as described in the Style Guide until further notice. Thank you. VANKRASN39 (talk) 14:47, 12 October 2017 (CDT)
Read your note. Headed to the style guide! (Feel free to join us, community! ;) DOUG (talk) 18:22, 12 October 2017 (CDT)

It looks like the math extension is broken (again) for a lot of wikis. There's a suggested workaround here, to connect to Wikipedia instead of ZHOUY1 (talk) 14:17, 20 November 2017 (CST)

$wgMathFullRestbaseURL= '';
Update: is down again as of now. ZHOUY1 (talk) 13:46, 30 November 2017 (CST)
Temporary workaround: copy the math code into to manually generate an image of the formula. ZHOUY1 (talk) 19:05, 3 December 2017 (CST)
This is the exact same workaround that I wanted to do for math display originally, so I'm all for it as a permanent solution. VANKRASN39 (talk) 09:51, 4 December 2017 (CST)
All pages with math errors have been fixed. When the math extension goes out for an extended time, some pages will still maintain the garbled display when it is fixed. In order to fix it, someone (hopefully in the future the Wiki GM) will need to go page by page and check all pages using the math tag. A search for "math" will obviously display any word with math both on the page and in the code. Look for the ones with "<math>" in the results display and visit all of them. Some will be fixed, some will not be. On the ones where the display is still messed up, make and save an edit like adding a space, or fixing code if something is not right (like excess pipes in templates). VANKRASN39 (talk) 10:03, 7 December 2017 (CST)

Apple and Mac OS X, with Lich

Apple's done it again. Users of Lich on the Mac OS X platform who are presently working will (I predict) suddenly cease working. There are quite a few variables to consider - but thankfully there are a couple of short solutions. I need to test them first. Watch the Mac Installation - Lich (software) article for details as they come in. DOUG (talk) 19:50, 9 October 2017 (CDT)

September 2017

User Page Creation

Why am I not allowed to create my user page? It gives me an HTTP 500 error. I can edit/create pages on the actual wiki just fine. MERZBOW (talk) 22:33, 5 September 2017 (CDT)

You are allowed. It is a technical issue that has been brought up with onsite many times. Create a dummy page and move it to the User:MERZBOW page. I or another moderator will delete the dummy page. Please post further if you need additional help. VANKRASN39 (talk) 22:37, 5 September 2017 (CDT)
Thanks, that worked. MERZBOW (talk) 23:14, 5 September 2017 (CDT)

Spell Classifications

I'm working in the future. This is in regards to cloud-based spells being classified as cloud-based, or as maneuvers, since there are inconsistencies between the different spell articles. Information from GM Viduus (spawned by the MIU/AS review inquiries):

I would personally classify them as a maneuver, but it's hazy territory.  In my opinion anything that isn't AS/CS resolution falls into the maneuver category.

I believe the reason people draw a distinction is for spells like 125 (Call Lightning) which don't really provide a chance for the target to avoid the effect.  People see maneuvers as being something you can avoid with skill/luck and 125 falls into an area of auto-hit.  From a code implementation it's pretty much all the same, you can have a 90% chance of avoiding something or a 0% chance.

I'm open to either making all cloud-based be classified as cloud, or classified as maneuver, but I believe it needs to be consistent across these spells, and it is currently not. Opinions/votes welcome. VANKRASN39 (talk) 15:31, 31 August 2017 (CDT)

For attack spells, maybe it is only necessary to have Bolt, Warding, Maneuver, and Special (dispel/drain/other). Those subtypes describe the type of defense that applies. Cloud spells are a different kind of classification that can cut across different subtypes, there is nothing that prevents implementing a warding-based cloud in the future. ZHOUY1 (talk) 00:00, 1 September 2017 (CDT)
This has not been forgotten. Since it leads to checking/changing every attack spell page, I think we should take care of the MIU/AS update spells first and write a template for the language that will go directly on each article while the Official Editor Guide is being finished/approved (mods feel free to check the doc and review/comment). Then after that is all done tackle the spell template.
But to nudge it forward a little, based on the saved post designating Song of Noise as a spell of war, I think the Wiki designation should be changed to Attack - Special. Thoughts? VANKRASN39 (talk) 18:37, 11 September 2017 (CDT)

August 2017

In further efforts to clean up the saved posts (almost done!) and provide places where moderation restrictions are looser (as GSWiki is also supposed to be official documentation, we need the mechanics articles (and categories) to be comprehensive), I've moved a couple of pages to use the Research: prefix to denote pages that are not written in article format or may be previously saved posts. We can even move information from Talk: pages to give it a wider audience. The first page, Research:Unaimed body location assignment was previously a saved post, and the second page, Research:Open ambushing, was an article that was determined to be repetitive and not up to standards (see its Talk page), but still provided data. This also incorporates Doug's suggestion from September 2016.

I think that we should keep the research pages restricted to a Player Research category and limited to mechanics information, but linking from applicable article pages in the Resources section is okay and encouraged. This is simply to prevent cluttering up categories with too much information that has not been verified.

I am also open to other ideas, and have only done two pages because those are easily undone in case this is idea is panned. But I hope people like it, and I hope it provides a solution to some of the issues we've had when people put unverified information on the main articles. VANKRASN39 (talk) 15:02, 7 August 2017 (CDT)

Liking this. This should serve nicely, and allow folks an easy means to put up information that may not quite be complete / standardized, but is too valuable to let roll off or get lost among noise on the forums. Great idea, V! DOUG (talk) 21:10, 7 August 2017 (CDT)

Should there be a front page item to remind people to pick up their GIFTBOX before the end of August? (Should really be an item on the actual GS site and not the wiki, but it's dropped off the announcement box there.) ZHOUY1 (talk) 15:02, 23 August 2017 (CDT)

Sure, done. VANKRASN39 (talk) 17:56, 23 August 2017 (CDT)

February 2017

Special:Properties seems to be broken and the wiki is giving an error when trying to create any new properties. Searching for the error turns up some suggestions here. ZHOUY1 (talk) 18:45, 10 February 2017 (CST)

This issue should be fixed per Wyrom. VANKRASN39 (talk) 11:18, 9 March 2017 (CST)

December 2016

I thought it had been skipped as not being compatible because it wasn't on the upload page, but I found the batch upload today. VANKRASN39 (talk) 13:35, 9 December 2016 (CST)

September 2016

Met a request to put a player research post up on the wiki. V has a method she follows (as far as I know, she's the core contributor on saved posts). I think, though, that we should have a quick discussion about Player Research as a category / layout / templates to help some of our non-format types (like me!) along the path to saving their work for peer review and scrutiny. I don't personally want to get into judgement calls about whose data is worthy - let peer review manage that. But we probably should start with a framework and guidelines. And 'saved post' might not be our best option in my view. Thoughts? DOUG (talk) 00:16, 8 September 2016 (CDT)

August 2016

Math Ref: DOUG (talk) 13:55, 15 August 2016 (CDT)

Creature Style Guide: is there style guidance for creature pages, specifically the combat attributes? Creatures can gen within a level range - is the goal to show the base level stats, or the min/max that can occur? Similarly should the DS stat be from when the creature is in offensive? Curious as to people's thoughts. VERSIN (talk) 06:46, 11 August 2016 (CDT)

There is no style guide for creatures yet, but I welcome this discussion as the beginning steps to making one. VANKRASN39 (talk) 09:37, 11 August 2016 (CDT)
I have never bothered to even try to include these stats because there's such a range. Especially for creatures that can cast. If anything, I'd suggest editing the template to have "minimum observed" and "maximum observed" for each category, with a note not to count the effects of disabling statuses (stun/knockdown/interference/curse/etc.). Also, I just noticed that armor is listed in two places: the main infobox and the defense infobox. PFLATS (talk) 16:26, 11 August 2016 (CDT)
I recall someone requesting it be added to the main infobox, but I cannot find the request. The field was added last year. This project is similar to the NPC one in that there are a lot of people interested in adding to it, but getting an agreement on what and how information should be portrayed will be difficult. I'm very hesitant to completely redo the old templates, but that is probably what is needed. I think they could be much better, but I get backlash whenever it comes to setting up templates and standards, and then down the line there is more backlash when such page doesn't look like this or contain that information. VANKRASN39 (talk) 17:44, 11 August 2016 (CDT)
Suggest revising the area code on the creature start template to:
    ! valign="top" style="white-space: nowrap;" | Areas Found {{#if: {{{area|}}} |
{{!}} align="right" valign="top" style="white-space: nowrap;" {{!}} [[{{{area}}}]] {{#if: {{{area2|}}} |
<br>[[{{{area2}}}]] }} {{#if: {{{area3|}}} |
<br>[[{{{area3}}}]] }} {{#if: {{{area4|}}} |
<br>[[{{{area4}}}]] }} {{#if: {{{area5|}}} |
<br>[[{{{area5}}}]] }} {{#if: {{{area6|}}} |
<br>[[{{{area6}}}]] }} {{#if: {{{area7|}}} |
<br>[[{{{area7}}}]] }} {{#if: {{{area8|}}} |
<br>[[{{{area8}}}]] }}
And adding to the category code:
{{#if: {{{area|}}} | [[Category: {{{area}}} creatures]] }} {{#if: {{{area2|}}} | [[Category: {{{area2}}} creatures]] }} 
{{#if: {{{area3|}}} | [[Category: {{{area3}}} creatures]] }} {{#if: {{{area4|}}} | [[Category: {{{area4}}} creatures]] }} 
{{#if: {{{area5|}}} | [[Category: {{{area5}}} creatures]] }} {{#if: {{{area6|}}} | [[Category: {{{area6}}} creatures]] }} 
{{#if: {{{area7|}}} | [[Category: {{{area7}}} creatures]] }} {{#if: {{{area8|}}} | [[Category: {{{area8}}} creatures]] }}
I believe that will allow for up to 8 areas and the creatures will be added to every established "Area creatures" category automatically. HOWEVER, when this is initially changed, it will mess up the pages for all creatures appearing in multiple places, which is why I'm putting it here first, as I will need help finding these pages if we want to do this. VANKRASN39 (talk) 18:53, 11 August 2016 (CDT)
The template looks fine to me (I guess technically <br> is not quite the right semantics and it should be a list element but I doubt anyone would complain too much). I think "Area" should correspond exactly to the LOCATION verb, which is only mostly true right now on the wiki and editors should be careful to make sure they match. ZHOUY1 (talk) 15:21, 16 August 2016 (CDT)
Obviously I've gone in a different direction since the post since I wanted to play with it more, I ended up setting up a new set of creature templates, which is almost done and described in Help:Creatures. The way I set it up is that it can be used on a going forward basis so that old creature pages will not be affected and we can go back as time allows and change them as we want to. I added to use LOCATION verb on the Help page. VANKRASN39 (talk) 15:54, 16 August 2016 (CDT)
A couple attributes that are not yet covered are attack speed (or creature roundtime) and immunities to stun or other conditions. Speed would be a main attribute and immunities in the defensive section. Armor also makes more sense as defensive, I can make a sub-template for it. ZHOUY1 (talk) 23:36, 29 August 2016 (CDT)
I'll work on adding these to the current ones rather than have yet another. Another factor I was thinking of was elemental creatures (not just the "elementals"), extraplanar, etc. VANKRASN39 (talk) 07:42, 30 August 2016 (CDT)

July 2016

Looks like Labeled Section Transclusion is working. Glad we didn't have to back that out with Math. ;/ Not sure if anyone else has used this yet, but you can go to the Lich_(software) article and in the nav section click What Links Here. If you scroll to the bottom, you'll see how LST is called out differently from a standard article link. Fairly straight-forward and will hopefully ease some of the editing. DOUG (talk) 12:24, 27 July 2016 (CDT)

Hoping this is the correct page for this, but I would love to see a template implemented for GMNPCs and have it become a standard. Name, sex, race, status (alive/dead/other), common location, and known associates would be ideal categories to include in such a template. It would make the creation of stubs for GMNPCs easier, particularly if it automatically sorted them into categories based on what went into the fields. I'd particularly appreciate this as a new player, since it would make playing catchup that much easier. THAYET (talk) 02:11, 25 July 2016 (CDT)

I can certainly come up with a simple template for that, but do not have the knowledge of the storyline NPCs to do the actual page work for it (unless the info is already there). It would take a very detail oriented, dedicated person, such as INIQUITY is with the ICE Age pages, to really do the project justice. I usually stick to player-driven events over GM ones. The storyline pages and recent logs posted by Luxelle on TownCrier should be helpful in catching up in the meantime. VANKRASN39 (talk) 10:27, 25 July 2016 (CDT)
I don't mind combing through storyline stuff for things or even help with starting to create stubs for prominent NPCs based on those summaries, sure. The storyline pages as great as they are (seriously) are both dense and involve a lot of backstory that is not well-explained (or if it is, it's not indicated where it's explained). Example: Modern Chaston does not have a page. Coming in fresh, I have no way of knowing who this person is, who they are connected to, or which events they've been connected to in the past, which is especially awkward when that's something my character would know. Having a template as a jump-off point, particularly if it automatically generated categories (Location and race seem the most pertinent) so you can go through them to play catchup would be super helpful. If you can put together the template I'll start working on digging things up and piecing them together for the pages as I'm able. THAYET (talk) 16:53, 25 July 2016 (CDT)
I don't understand what you mean by "Modern Chaston". Is this the page you're referring to? I really don't follow these things. I also found this page. I'm working on a template(s) now. VANKRASN39 (talk) 20:43, 25 July 2016 (CDT)
I've always shied away from touching this because I was not around for so much of the Kenstrom storylines, and even the parts that happened when I was back, I miss a lot of what happens. I would mostly just be reorganizing information in Kenstrom's recaps into the NPC pages if it was not already in them. The ICE Age stuff is easier. It's just cross-referencing material scattered across published books, or reading lots of other material trying to reverse engineer the easter eggs. I wish we could do more with the "Theory of Magic" category, but for the most part only the archaic stuff is very well-defined. The official documents on it are self-contradictory and outdated, and barely scratch the surface of it. I would have to approach it by writing some very long essay as one of my characters. In principle I'd like to compile all of the lore inconsistencies. Kind of like a hit list of things to be retconned, or a way of seeing what things are problematic. For example, the Order of Voln within the game uses obsolete gods lore, even though its historical context was rewritten. With ICE this is also easier, because it's all outdated. INIQUITY (talk) 06:35, 27 July 2016 (CDT)

I'd use the template. We sort of stick to a loose one now, but it's not ideal. FIREPHOENIX (talk) 20:48, 25 July 2016 (CDT)

Rather than make a restrictive template, I've started a help page: Help:Storyline NPCs so that you guys can add the sections you'd like to see. I've also made an infobox template, where I'm open to changing the parameters. Please edit the help page directly and use the discussion page on the template if you don't understand the code. If you do change the parameters on the template, please update the copy/paste code on both pages. VANKRASN39 (talk) 23:30, 25 July 2016 (CDT)

Would anyone like to help make sure that all page names in the Non-Player Character category that include first and last name and/or a title have a redirect made of ONLY the first name, so that people might find these NPC pages more easily? VANKRASN39 (talk) 20:11, 26 July 2016 (CDT)

June 2016

Huge thanks to Simu-Myke for installing the Math and Labeled Section Transclusion extensions. The Sphinx search issues are still being worked on. VANKRASN39 (talk) 12:04, 25 June 2016 (CDT)

Looks like the Math had to be uninstalled due to technical issues. VANKRASN39 (talk) 10:06, 27 June 2016 (CDT)
😕 PFLATS (talk) 13:17, 26 July 2016 (CDT)

April 2016

Another minor style issue I realized recently: there are many places where a semicolon (;) is being used to set off subsections. While this displays fine on most browsers, it is actually improper html since it parses into the <dl><dt>...</dt></dl> tag instead of just bolding the line as the editor likely intended. ZHOUY1 (talk) 14:01, 18 April 2016 (CDT)

Mathematical symbols

Style suggestion: avoid using the ÷ (&divide;) symbol. According to the article on notation, "This form is infrequent except in elementary arithmetic. ISO 80000-2-9.6 states it should not be used." It also makes equations unreadable through the ;gswiki script. ZHOUY1 (talk) 14:45, 13 April 2016 (CDT)

I use the division symbol because that's what Mark wanted to use, and he was in charge of the math. But yeah we need that formula extension. No one seemed to like my workaround of uploading jpgs and pasting the code in the file page. VANKRASN39 (talk) 14:56, 13 April 2016 (CDT)


Just to weigh in: I think almost every page has a category or five that it could belong to. However, some of the categories are incredibly useful to me for browsing, including <Town> Shops, <Shop Type> Shops, and Guides. I know it's not just me; I've seen other people on lnet chat talk about using categories to browse premium home furnishings. I'd like to keep them that way; I'd be mildly annoyed if I went to the Guides category, found a guide that sounded promising, started reading, and realized it ended incomplete halfway through. I propose making an Incomplete Guides category as a subcategory of Guides, a Closed Shops category, and two closed shops templates to throw at the top of pages for those shops: one for shops that are closed for repairs/renovations and expected to reopen (IFW boutique) and one for shops that are closed for good (old Illy shops?). I don't think I'd want to put either type of closed shop in the <Town> Shops or <Shop Type> Shops category, but I could be convinced otherwise for the temporarily closed ones. PFLATS (talk) 08:08, 5 April 2016 (CDT)

Thank you, Paul. This is a reasonable approach. What is not reasonable is not realizing there are only a couple of dozen uncategorized pages, not asking why they are uncategorized, and not reading the Village Pump to know that there were once hundreds of uncategorized pages and hundreds of more categories, many versions of the same thing. When there are so few pages uncategorized, maybe they're like that for a reason. Maybe find out about that reason first, maybe ask rather than get upset while undoing months of someone else's work with no apparent overall plan except "every page must have a category no matter what" and adding many pages to the wrong categories. VANKRASN39 (talk) 08:43, 5 April 2016 (CDT)
I appreciate your constructive and direct feedback VANKRASN39. This is the first time I was made aware that you desire only pages up to "standards" to be in a category. This appears to be the first discussion of categories on the Village Pump page since your proposal to expand the Creature Family category. Nor did you indicate in your reversal of my edits that this standard was your aspiration, or that there was a discussion about this topic on the Village Pump. In fact the Style Guide recommends that pages have categories. It seems quite reasonable to assume that the handful of uncategorized pages could use categories, since this is a wiki after all and not every page is perfect. My plan was very apparent - I think having pages categorized helps navigation. Even if you find one of the guides to be sub-par, it is still a guide and the guide category contains other helpful guys. If you disagree with my categorization, I welcome your suggestion as to the correct category. VERSIN (talk) 21:48, 5 April 2016 (CDT)
Discussion of categories is in the most recent archive. If you want to do something with the basic organization of the site, post first. It's that simple. I've done it over and over again leaving days between posting and acting. Like me or not, I've put a lot of work into the organization of the site. I would love to have time to do full instructions on how to do things, but very few people helped with HSN, including GMs, so I spent what time I had last year on that and other major projects. I work full time, I like to enjoy game time, I don't have time to do everything, so please just ask. VANKRASN39 (talk) 22:23, 5 April 2016 (CDT)
I think everyone appreciates the amount of time you devote to the wiki, but please realize that it is a collaborative project that does not require your personal approval of every edit. I will be sure to consult the Village Pump page more thoroughly in the future. VERSIN (talk) 08:12, 6 April 2016 (CDT)
I wish someone on staff was here to approve every edit and I definitely wish staff contributed more, but the fact is we have no oversight and very little assistance from Simu, and the fact that the site is considered "Official Documentation," the pages should be kept up to certain levels of standards, including grammar, style, and formatting. When you're going over a project that Mark, DAID and I did, yes, I am going to have something to say. If you "didn't know," it means you should have asked the community, not tell me I should have asked the community when I go in and fix the issues. There are very few people I feel I need to go over every edit for, but you are one, as you often don't use log2 correctly, and I always indicate what I fixed. But I do like to go over the edit list, because I can learn something from them, and use other people's innovations in what I do. BTW the guide is not "not good" it is just not finished. VANKRASN39 (talk) 08:52, 6 April 2016 (CDT)

March 2016

Completed project: Premium home (PH) shop inventories. Just because the system isn't getting development attention doesn't mean it's not fun to decorate a house. Plus so much effort obviously went into making the system and so much in game real estate is dedicated to it, it is a shame to let it rot on the Wiki side. Permanent town NPC shops I believe are about 99% done and are no longer mixed with the PH shops. VANKRASN39 (talk) 13:23, 14 March 2016 (CDT)

November 2015

I went ahead and created a Lich chat channel for anyone wanting to discuss or just chat about wiki edits. I know during festivals, it would be nice to have a dedicated chat channel for all of us doing room edits and such to discuss things. ;TUNE GSWiki to join the channel. It should be public. WHIGHTCNIGHT (talk) 19:16, 1 November 2015 (CST)

October 2015

Thanks to CYAKNIGHT for designing a simple template to use for NPC Shops. It is appropriately called NPC Shops, and is very easy to use, has code to copy/paste, and detailed instructions on how to work with certain situations. If you have any additions and you're not sure how to work with templates, please feel free to email me or add to the template's Discussion Page. I have done most if not all of Mist Harbor, Wehnimer's Landing, and Ta'Illistim, including going over shops that have pages already and applying the template to the page. VANKRASN39 (talk) 20:31, 10 October 2015 (CDT)

September 2015

Hot Summer Nights 2015 updates

All of the updates released so far for the Elemental Lore Review (ELR) have been made on the respective spell and lore pages with mini lore benefit threshold tables on each affected spell page. If you want to pitch in, the todo list of HSN updates is found here. When you have finished an update in full by integrating the information into article format, remove the {{HSN}} code from the page you are working on to remove it from the list.

Copying and pasting from the applicable saved post is a good start, but posts are often abbreviated, missing details, in the wrong tense, and/or point of view. The article should be consistent for style throughout. The {{HSN}} tag is being kept on the specific lore pages until the ELR is complete. VANKRASN39 (talk) 13:39, 7 September 2015 (CDT)

July 2015

Happy HSN! This idea is inspired by ZHOUY1. I'm wondering what others think about taking the deity messaging off the spell pages and keeping it only on the deity pages like how ZHOUY1 did with the Lorminstra page. IMO the deity messaging makes the spell pages onerous to review/read. Having a single page with all deity messaging is also an option. VANKRASN39 (talk) 14:36, 9 July 2015 (CDT)

I'll work on making a master page for deity messaging that the various spells can link to. ZHOUY1 (talk) 22:47, 15 July 2015 (CDT)

April on approach!

Well, ok, it's here, technically.

Additional Function Request In addition to the late March request for Labeled Section Transclusion, would like to ask that the same elements established for DR WIKI be available for GS WIKI - in particular semantic search capabilities and data values capabilities. See what's installed there at DR Installed Extensions. I'm thinking verb look ups, shop list look ups and the like. DOUG (talk) 17:25, 2 April 2015 (CDT)

Forging? I mastered forging, but even I need to look at guides to remember sometimes. Can we get an actual command listing somewhere in the forging/crafting sections to help new players? It's entirely too confusing. FIREPHOENIX (talk) 17:39, 3 April 2015 (CDT)

Reminder to please sign your comments with the 4 ~ in a row as mentioned at the top of the page. Specific page requests might also go in the Requests page. VANKRASN39 (talk) 16:47, 3 April 2015 (CDT)

Errors on spell pages Not sure what template changed... but I'm coming up with all sorts of crazy formatting errors on all spells pages. HJELTE (talk) 12:16, 7 April 2015 (CDT)

WTF, that's new. Will take a look. VANKRASN39 (talk) 12:17, 7 April 2015 (CDT)
It seems to be related to the {{Spell}} template thingy... although, I was unable to find how to adjust the those types of templates.HJELTE (talk) 12:21, 7 April 2015 (CDT)
It's likely due to tinkering at HQ in attempts to fix the other issues. I would not make any edits on it right now. Also, all the uploaded files are inaccessible. I have emailed the appropriate Simu parties. VANKRASN39 (talk) 12:32, 7 April 2015 (CDT)
Not a problem for me... I'm not nearly as adept at wiki editing to mess tinkering with any templates anytime soon! I'm no DOUG! HJELTE (talk) 12:41, 7 April 2015 (CDT)
Received message back from Solomon that it is being looked at onsite. VANKRASN39 (talk) 12:50, 7 April 2015 (CDT)
This seems resolved now... Thanks Solomon! HJELTE (talk) 20:29, 7 April 2015 (CDT)

March marches on!

New Function Request Would like to have Labeled Section Transclusion extensions added to GSWiki. This will help in several ways, most importantly to 'copy' text from one article into another without having to physically copy it, or simply wrap a link into some explanatory texts. Greatly improves editing capabilities since the original text can be modified and is represented anywhere else it has been transcluded. Prevents having to transclude full pages (useful for snippet inclusions from saved posts, as an example.) Information here. Labeled Section Transclusion. DOUG (talk) 15:54, 29 March 2015 (CDT)

I strongly recommend sending requests having to do with the backbone programming of the wiki directly to Wyrom and Solomon. I also wouldn't expect anything to happen quickly. I agree and think that functionality would be very useful. VANKRASN39 (talk) 16:15, 29 March 2015 (CDT)

Wanted to let everyone know I created a Redirect template which will allow us to more easily reach disambiguation. Presently, some disambiguation pages (like AG) can have multiple entries, but we didn't select one. Now, we can select one, and with the Redirect template, we can code in where the disambiguation resides. Requires three touches - a disambiguation page loaded with possible terms and created with 'Title (disambiguation)'; a redirect that is simply 'Title' and set to redirect to the most favored topic, and an edit to the most favored topic to add the Redirect template info. See 'AG' as an example. No more hidden or orphanged disambiguation pages! DOUG (talk) 00:17, 15 March 2015 (CDT)

Exactly what I was hoping for - thanks for doing this! VERSIN (talk) 09:28, 15 March 2015 (CDT)

SYSOP ATTN: Tried using the on-wiki email function, as presumed it would preserve links. However, experienced the following error:

Unknown error in PHP's mail() function

Is this something easily repaired? DOUG (talk) 23:02, 15 March 2015 (CDT)

Could use some information added to Battle of Skyreach - and probably need to put in the correct geo-categories for Skyreach. Sorry, elf expert here, not human. DOUG (talk) 14:33, 16 March 2015 (CDT)

TEMPLATES - created three new templates for use in herb shops. I did it because I hate formatting (those checking the recent changes can attest, I hope).

  • A template named 'H', you won't be calling this one directly, but it does a look up on an herb and returns the link to that herb in shop text. Example: {{H | acantha}} returns [[Acantha leaf | some acantha leaf]].
  • A template named 'T' that does the same thing except it returns the tincture for the herb, like {{T | acantha}} -> [[Acantha leaf | a tincture of acantha]]. I chose the base herb rather than the tincture to link to because too often the tincture is the alchemical recipe, rather than a complete definition of the herb itself.
  • A template named 'Hshop' which is the glue that binds. This template takes in a formatted line, calls the appropriate 'T' or 'H' template to lookup the link structure, and puts the information back to a single line. This can then be wrapped by a table to provide a complete linked table of herbs in an herb shop. The parameters in order:
  • The catalog number shown in the shop
  • An H or a T, depending on if the shop has herbs or tinctures
  • The base herb, such as pothinir
  • The price, if you get that while in the shop.
  • So now shops are as simple to format as {{Hshop | 1 | T | pothinir | 250}}. For a direct example, you can check out Natulcien's Healer Hall.

Off to do the Sylvarraend shop next, just to see how much off-wiki editing I'll have to do to clean a log. Ugh - formatting! DOUG (talk) 02:10, 17 March 2015 (CDT)

And NEW templates, again. Adding 'Sp' and 'Log2' to our collections. 'Sp' does nothing more than put in non-breaking spaces, however many you specify up to 10. Format is {{Sp|5}} to imbed 5 spaces. To imbed 15 spaces - {{Sp|10}}{{Sp|5}}. This should probably only be used at the beginning of a line to indent, because 'Log2' is designed to retain white spaces in the line itself. So no need to imbed white space any where other than at the beginning of a line. Using these templates, EXPERIENCE would look like this in wiki-speak (compare it with the actual code on EXPERIENCE (verb). Yikes!)

<pre{{log2}}>  <!-- Note no space between pre and template call, very important --!>
<!-- Note, standard copy and paste of EXP output follows with Experience translinked to appropriate page --!>
          Level: 6                           Deeds: 0              
     [[Experience]]: 43060               Death's Sting: None
Exp. until next: 11940               Recent Deaths: 0              
     Mental TPs: 5                            Fame: 27644          
   Physical TPs: 47                           Mana: 23/23 max

Your mind is as clear as a bell.

gives us this output:

          Level: 6                           Deeds: 0              
     Experience: 43060               Death's Sting: None
Exp. until next: 11940               Recent Deaths: 0              
     Mental TPs: 5                            Fame: 27644          
   Physical TPs: 47                           Mana: 23/23 max

Your mind is as clear as a bell.

UPDATE: Based on Vanessa's feedback (the dialog below), I set as my goal to adjust these templates to better conform to vertical white-space layout, while retaining the horizontal white-space layout where I felt it relevant in logs. I've adjusted the LOG2 template significantly to meet these goals, and the new usage is specified above. The challenge to meet the improvement requests Vanessa suggested below led to no more vertical 'blue' white-space in the logs (and can be adjusted if living on the edge isn't your thing). And very happy additional benefits - I undertook as a goal to absolutely minimize editing needed to bring a log snapshot over from a game log, so there should be (note: should be) no need to add any hard line breaks to logs, and there is also no need to use the SP template referenced above. Leading spaces are now properly accounted for. There may still be some utility to the SP template, so for now I'll leave it in place, but consider it deprecated at this point. I'm very interested in hearing if 'log dumps' into this template do not perform as specified. And if they don't, leave me a note on my talk page - and revert to LOG - as long as spacing retention is not important. Thanks for the input, Vanessa! DOUG (talk) 13:51, 25 March 2015 (CDT)

Put 'em to good use! DOUG (talk) 23:27, 23 March 2015 (CDT)

I very much disagree with putting extra white space where there does not need to be extra white space. I do not think line breaks necessarily need to appear where it appears in game if it disrupts the readability to the user. The game is more limited than we are here. This site should lean toward readability and usability vs. purist vision of in game text. If you want a purist vision, I recommend uploading screenshots (whenever that is fixed). VANKRASN39 (talk) 11:31, 24 March 2015 (CDT)
True representation of what is seen in game in the FEs is important in a number of cases. The concept of 'purist vision' is secondary - immediate orientation of what one is seeing on screen is the goal; this is important with the influx of new members. We recognize patterns and layouts, and some mental energies are spent trying to figure out why what we're seeing (before we even begin reading) is different. A new player also pointed out to me that format recognition helps discern relevant material from irrelevant material in-game once one becomes familiar with it. I'm not sure how I feel about that. I'll also point out that <br> tags are necessary with 'Log', but are not with 'Log2', which further reduces editing - an important goal in my view. I hate tweaking formats, in case that wasn't evident. In short, I welcome the disagreement, but do not see disagreement on spacing (in-line, not between lines) / in-game view as warranting an edit. I would like them reverted. This is something I can do, but I would hate to revert a combined edit and lose the benefit of the grammar corrections and multi-line (different from multi-space) corrections that I see as exceptionally beneficial. So I ask that they be reverted by the editor. I'll do so however, if needed, but would prefer not. Interesting side-bar: There are about 190 articles going back to at least 2009 where other authors / editors felt retention of in-line spacing (game view) was important. DOUG (talk) 12:05, 24 March 2015 (CDT)
adding the different SP templates is more work than adding BRs. I can add br tags in Word in 1 second. VANKRASN39 (talk) 12:16, 24 March 2015 (CDT)
WORD is powerful, no doubt. It is no more work, though - I can do the same using WORD with the various SP# entries, upon opening the document itself. I'm sure you could as well. However, not everyone has access to WORD, nor likes using WORD. I prefer *NIX tools, myself, and reach the same ends in the same time frame - yes, for either template choice. None of this has relevance to the discussion since the representation is not retained using the 'Log' template, and br tags aren't needed in 'Log2'. I'll commit this, though, as a courtesy - I won't edit any logs you post where you choose 'new-found ability for your choice of readability' over my choice 'for consistency with in-game orientation'. I'd like the same courtesy. I'll begin my reversions in a couple hours, if not completed before then. I apologize in advance if I remove any meaningful edits while correcting the non-meaningful ones. Another side-bar: Before creating Log2, I thought to just modify Log to do what I wanted, but the number of transclusions and an appropriate QC seemed too much effort for what is really a simple task. DOUG (talk) 12:48, 24 March 2015 (CDT)
And so here we have again a situation where pages are "my" pages and "your" pages, and that should not be. Should you fix your template to not have the extra white space top and bottom, I will agree to use it. In the meantime, I believe the PM and/or APM should decide, and I would also welcome Mark's input. VANKRASN39 (talk) 13:04, 24 March 2015 (CDT)
I welcome all inputs. However, you confuse a conscious request / choice against inconsequential editing with a 'my / your' scenario. I've always held, publicly and privately, that edits need to make a difference. I vehemently agree with you concerning the extra line white space - was working on that at this very moment. More tweaking - yay. But I do want to be sure to retain that worthy contribution when I do the reversions. Hence 'a couple of hours'. Note, though, I'm not asking you (or anyone else) to change your contributions to use Log2 going forward. If I fall into a disagreement about in-game / readability on something someone posts, the author can expect a note with a plea, rather than an edit. Courtesy, you see. DOUG (talk) 13:26, 24 March 2015 (CDT)
Verb pages are not exactly guides or in depth. As I said via email, I was making them look like the hundred or so other verb pages that I edited in exactly the same manner. If you are so protective of your verb pages, I am concerned about the ease of working with you on other projects. VANKRASN39 (talk) 13:30, 24 March 2015 (CDT)
I understand about VERBS, but somehow I'm not getting my point across. Apologies. Somehow, I'll find the way to ensure we all understand it doesn't just affect VERBS. Perhaps that bit of recommended research would make it clear. Let me help - search the wiki for nbsp; for insights into the 190 other articles referenced. Most of those articles included were part of a project that is deemed very successful. Also note adjustment to use above (see how useful a few extra spaces can be?) - the problem with the extra lines that are so importune is - the white space command used to preserve the formatting preserves it all, including the natural tendency to start the log input on a new line, and close out the DIV tag on a new line. I'm working various angles, but for now, use (or edit as required) as shown will meet both goals. I'll update if I get a more intuitive fix in play, but it might be beyond simple editorship rights, involving the CSS itself. DOUG (talk) 18:55, 24 March 2015 (CDT)
Aah, a <pre>. I couldn't use <pre> on the old site because the built in settings for it made the text too small for me to read without squinting, so it never came to me as the solution. Congrats and thanks for figuring it out, glad you stuck with Consolas. Will try to spread the word and put it into use. VANKRASN39 (talk) 14:46, 25 March 2015 (CDT)

Happy 1 Month!

Happy 1 month on, everybody. So far so good? VANKRASN39 (talk) 22:05, 31 January 2015 (CST)

See the Help page for how to search. VANKRASN39 (talk) 11:58, 4 February 2015 (CST)
So far, so good. Although, I haven't been checking back to old Krakii site. Is that down completely now? Just want to make sure we don't fork information. Also... any word from GM side if we can integrate in a better search bar? Lich is a cesspool when it comes to adoption of GSWiki just because of those search shortcomings. HJELTE (talk) 18:41, 4 February 2015 (CST)
There have been no changes there in the past 30 days. VANKRASN39 (talk) 20:18, 4 February 2015 (CST)


Super tedious project: completing the verbs on the Special:WantedPages. Who wants to help? You can see TURN (verb), ASK (verb), and POKE (verb) for examples, but feel free to go further in depth or add to mine, or do any of the other wanted pages. ASK led me to adding a whole lot more detail to the Quin Telaren page. VANKRASN39 (talk) 16:57, 21 January 2015 (CST)

With regards to the current Player Guide Contest, none of the guides are going to be very complete when they will be published with many broken links to basic verbs that do not have pages. At some point, someone needs to step in and help. Thanks. VANKRASN39 (talk) 23:29, 5 February 2015 (CST)
I'll help out with this, but first I think it important to start weeding through and correcting errors. Some of these things do exist or seem totally nonsensical. I'm working from the 'back' of the list on '1-link' requests. That will hopefully allow for some focus. And as I trip across a verb request I feel I can do, I'll put it up. DOUG (talk) 00:19, 16 March 2015 (CDT)

Creature family categories

One thing I've really tried to do is make the wiki more navigable via categories. Something standing in my way has always been the creature family categories that generate from Template:Creature start. Most of the categories created only have one or two entries and it really bloats the category list. What do people think about deleting this part of the template and getting rid of the excess categories? This is something I've never felt comfortable doing without some sort of consensus/permission, and there weren't really enough editors for one. VANKRASN39 (talk) 01:49, 4 January 2015 (CST)

I'm in favor of this idea with one caveat. The <Creature name> Family Creatures (eg. Rat Family Creatures) categories account for at least 30% of all categories. My suggestion would be to replace these categories with individual pages which would include a list of the applicable creatures. This of course would require (not exactly sure on the number) approximately 240 new pages. Each of these pages would be placed in Category:Creature Families which would become a sub-category of Category:Creatures. Hey! Let me know when you're done :) Mark (talk) 23:34, 5 January 2015 (CST)
Well, what if only those with 2 or more creatures got their own page? Would that be sufficient? VANKRASN39 (talk) 00:26, 6 January 2015 (CST)
I'd feel more comfortable if every family was included if only for reference purposes. I don't mind creating the pages. I might need some guidance with template modifications and removal of the current category pages. If you have no objection to the overall proposal I'll begin on the page creation process. BTW your output is mind boggling and I'm going to recommend to Wyrom that you be awarded the inaugural NONPAREIL PRODUCTIVITY MEDAL for services above and beyond mere mortals. Mark (talk) 00:49, 6 January 2015 (CST)
Ha, thanks, we have about 40 days to make up for and you're doing great work as well. I think the creature start template tweak should come after all the pages are made because the current category list is the best resource for making the new pages. I think this is a project we can share the work on, but my work here is going to slow down dramatically. Did you want to make a basic template for the new pages? I'm happy to help with that, too. VANKRASN39 (talk) 01:17, 6 January 2015 (CST)
You deserve some sort of tangible compensation for your efforts. Thanks, but I won't need a template; page creation is the trivial part which I can handle. Fixing links from the creature pages to the new pages may be a bit more daunting unless it can be effected within the Template:Creature Start. Mark (talk) 01:29, 6 January 2015 (CST)
I think we can declare this project complete and, as far as my goals, a great success. Thanks, Mark! VANKRASN39 (talk) 11:40, 9 January 2015 (CST)
The creature body types are now properly organized. VANKRASN39 (talk) 16:57, 21 January 2015 (CST)


Archives of the Village Pump page.