Okay, I’m ready to make a page for a game. What information should it include?
Here’s what I think of: I want to tell a person about a game. I was to share a link. Wikipedia is fine, but maybe it isn’t notable enough, or I don’t care to share the plot with the person, just some screenshots and basic info to figure out if they want to know more.
What have you always wished was included on game pages, wherever. Think game stores, retro sites, different directories that provide one page per game.
Things I like knowing about a game (In no particular order):
Screenshots, Elevator Pitch, Developer, Genre of Gameplay, Genre of Setting (if any), Platforms, FLOSS or non-FLOSS, Platforms, Length, Difficulty, DRM/DRM-Free. Queer characters? (character diversity in general?) Does it avoid anime boobs and other gratuitous forms of objectification? Standalone/Part-of-Series, System Requirements (if relevant).
So for things that can be tracked in Wikidata, we can pull those things in as needed. That’s cool, because we can handle the rest “locally”.
I’m personally inspired by “anti-features” in F-Droid and other systems. I’d like to have both, “Features” and “Anti-Features”, as two taxonomies. This would allow us to load in ready-made explanations of the thing. So we can say things like, fantasy racism, gratuitous objectification, drm.
One of my goals is to have each anti-feature tied to one or more features, so we can relate games that way.
Along with system requirements, I’d like to have install instructions, with links to more details if needed. One reason is to show how free gaming and distros simplify installing games. Also, we can choose how we link to other sites. Steam is out. GOG gets a URL, but unlinked. I’ll see how funky this method is.
Being able to recognize if something “works in dosbox” or scummvm or wine at a glance would be nice. Its kinda annoying to me that GOG isn’t upfront with what is running under the hood with their classic catalog.
We are definitely going to solve this, one game at time.
Aside: this is why I’m using a questing system, so we can move on games that have the most impact, by front loading the ones we care about. Once we have a workflow in place, folks will see how to add and update their own favorite games.
Is it possible to express “works in” in Wikidata? Because then we could do lots of folks a favor at once. I haven’t thrown myself into Wikidata and gaming yet, but I have been reading a blog that I can’t find now (!!) about how the games in Wikidata are getting updated. I want to improve on the data when it comes to our attention, it really pays it forward! And if that is a datapoint we can express, we ought to.
@trashHeap, something I’m excited for is to map all the things that are represented in Wikidata (let’s call it our core, notable fact DB), and then we use our own data to merge in things that are important to us. For instance, queer characters. Except I don’t mean to mark a game as such, I plan on graphing that info, where we can load up all the characters and create relevant queries.
On a personal note, this is a path emerging for me. I might be able to do something with this professionally, but it is really important for our species that more people try to organize the data. We can’t leave it to the corps, they are out to get us! And they just steal our data anyhow.
Anyhow, I’m considering looking into setting up Wikibase, but that will involve me finally figuring out Docker so I am confident my data is safe, and that is also a server. We’ll circle round back.
Though how are we defining TTRPGs as opposed to TableTop games in general?
The reason I ask is that can be kinda sticky with lots of wierd border issues as some games have been designed almost on purpose to blend genres, with card and board games; and hell TTRPGs are an outgrowth of TT Strategy historically.
And if it’s going to be tabletop games in general, I can roll with that. Just your going to get a different set of answers out of me.
I agree with your assessment, and let me say this: I wasn’t expecting there to much difference between games, in general. I’ve done some data mapping in this space before, and I found that things that apply to one type of game generally apply in way that is easy to distinguish.
In a practical sense, say we track “installation size”, well that isn’t recorded for games that don’t “install”.
Anything come to mind that doesn’t fall into place that way? Ah, screw it! I’m deferring, let’s just make game pages!
K. Im going to focus on TTRPGs for the momment because thats what I can wrap my head around.
Dice Used (Standard set, multiple Standard Sets, 4dF, 2d12, *d6 ).
Main Die Mechanic (Roll Over, Roll Under, Dice Pool, etc) [ Man the ability to sort games by the dice they use kinda excites. ]
License ( OGL, Creative Commons*, Standard Copyright, etc, etc).
Sexually Exploitive Art
Sexist Mechanics (strength caps on female characters, etc.)
Legal SRD Available
Rules Crunchiness (This is very subjective, not sure how you’d quantify this. But its a big factor for lots of people and me. ?)
Publishing Strategy: Everything in one book / versus multiple core rulebooks and lots of supplements.
Battle Matt (Optional versus Heavily Encouraged versus Nearly Mandatory)
Officially Supported Campaign Settings
Community Supported Campaign Settings
Explicitly Progressive ( Games highlighting diverse characters and explicitly defining their worlds with broad definitions of equality. Pathfinder and Blue Rose come to mind here, there are of course others. ).
Classy versus Classless characters.
Levels versus Leveless characters.
Influenced/Inspired By (How 13th age was very much a different take of the 4e design philosophy. How Fudge was inspired by GURPs, etc.)
I’d like something to capture narrativist versus simultaionist. I.E. Story-driven-mechanics versus simplistic physics sandboxes. However the deffinitions of narrativist versus simulationist have gotten so muddied i’d like different terms for this.
I’d also like something to capture games with known toxic creators. Like Lamentations of the Flame Princess gets tossed around the internet, but id like to slap some surgeon generals style warnings about both the creator and publisher being scum.
Wow, I didn’t know either of those! I mean, I think I knew all the people that worked on 13th Age, and that totally makes sense given the timing and what little I know of the mechanics, but that is really inspirational to me; we can make some really great connections for interested peeps.
Yes! This is the thing I feel we’ll never get to store in someone else’s database, so we’ve got to build it ourselves.
Are there mental models aside from GNS theory - Wikipedia that provide interesting insights into games? I am not sure GNS works as the ultimate expression, but I’ve always wanted one of those concentric circle charts that show the levels and shape of a thing’s attributes.
What are those things called? They pop up in anime, Legend of the Five Rings character sheets, other things. Like, you could show the D&D stats on it, and it would be 6 spikes around a circle.
Presuming that makes sense, could we “weigh” how much something is G or N or S or ?
Ive been told that GNS is kinda considered dated or inaccurate in some circles, but ive never gotten anyone to articulate any other mental models at me; and I find it’s utility for describing games pretty high.
I had a friend who seriously studied set theory. He gave me a very brief crash course once in how it’s very good at defining things that can’t have objective definitions.
But im rambling…
Most of the time I think people can’t objectively weigh this sort of thing per se, but they can compare and contrast it with other games they know and generally reach a common agreement.
Im just thinking off the cuff, but maybe we present it that way?
Each game could have a list:
TTRPGs with similar Gameist elements
TTRPGs with similar Narrativist elements
TTRPGs with similar Simulationis elements.
Then people can judge from such a web where it falls?
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I thought I’d find other folks working on TTRPGs, but I can’t really find anything. Even the Wikidata projects are split between video and board games, so I’m gonna see what I can derive from Wikidata:WikiProject Board Games - Wikidata and compare it to our items we’ve listed here.