Making the Wiki BetterEdit
Hey, everybody. As the neat little header has already pointed out, what I'm going to discuss here is a simple question: how do we make this Wiki better?
I've been contributing on-and-off to the Wiki since mid-2011, if I recall correctly. It was a hot summer's day and I had just started up another file of my favorite game, Grandia. While searching up some guides to obtain the ever-so-desired complete file, I came across this Wiki. I decided to contribute to it, obviously, to make this the go-to place for anything related to the Grandia series. So far, I think this Wiki has accomplished that, even before my arrival (I'm not so arrogant as to suggest that it happened afterwards!). There are really no other sites out there that go over the material we have on this site as comprehensively. We have the shrines for the individual Grandia games, and some other sites that have since been shut down such as The Vast Lands of Grandia, but nothing quite as complete as what we have here, though we still have a ways to go.
So, that's exactly it: how do we make this place better? There are plenty of other Wikis out there, some that have failed, some that have succeeded, but how do we measure up to the best? Take for example the Final Fantasy Wiki--it's an incredibly comprehensive site full of things that make it a great Wiki. Obviously, what makes the Final Fantasy Wiki a great site can be attributed to its fans; there are so many fans of the Final Fantasy series that the Wiki site will be that much more comprehensive and complete. But what the Grandia series doesn't have in the size of the fanbase is made up for by the dedication of some of its fans. I think we all know that users like Orc King are the backbone of this Wiki, and he's put so much into this Wiki that I can't help but be astounded by it all. I've tried to contribute to the Wiki myself, mostly by completing lists, creating some pages, and rewriting some parts of the Wiki, but I can't help but feel like I could put in some more. So, my first contribution in the interest of that is beginning a discussion: what would make this Wiki better? I'm unsure of how many people will read this, but for all who did, please give us some ideas! After all, what I think might make the Wiki better might be different from what you, the reader, may think would be better. Don't be afraid to voice your opinion!
To end things off, I guess I should go over some ideas. I'll keep it simple from here on with these handy-dandy bullet points:
- Navigation is somewhat difficult from page to page; many Wikis have a collapsible box at the bottom of each page (that's relevant to the page's content) that have a directory to all things relating to the game, such as character or weapon archives to help with moving around the Wiki. I've created Template:Grandia as a work-in-progress attempt at making one of these. It's not finished yet, however, and if it works out, templates for the other games are planned as well.
- The formatting on certain pages is lacking. Take for example Yuki's page: his special moves are laid out in a very unergonomic manner. It's good for a placeholder, but then we have pages like Justin which are laid out in a much more ergonomic and logical manner. This is not my area of expertise, as my knowledge of how to format Wikis is simply terrible.
- This one is very cut and dry: we need to finish off the archives and lists. I've recently finished off Grandia Weapons, and since I find unexplainable joy in making and completing lists, I'm fine with finishing them all off myself. However, the problem lies in the information; there is so much to know about Grandia that not even the shrines or FAQs cover some aspects. Things like weapon range, or base power of special moves, and more. These are incredibly tough to find, as you need to go into the code to get these values, or devise mathematical equations (not my strong point by a long shot!), but they would be invaluable, pun unashamedly intended, to have on this Wiki. People like Dunal have touched on this, though only for certain moves in the first Grandia game.
- This next one is highly debatable: the aesthetics and graphics of the Wiki are, as they stand, modelled solely after the first Grandia game. I like it, but there are two issues I can see with it: it neglects mention of the other games in the series and some may find that it looks slightly drab. Obviously, this works for the first Grandia because many of the game's aesthetics are designed to be rustic and "dirty" in nature, but does it work for the rest of the games and is it pleasing to the eye? Personally, I like it, but I can also see arguments for the other side. What are people's thoughts on this?
RE:Making the Wiki BetterEdit
Thank you for the extensive analysis of the Wiki, Boomerang Flash. As you say, I'm not sure how many people read the talk pages (or any of the pages for that matter) but I am glad you feel that the wiki stands out amongst other sources of Grandia knowledge.
I'm sure you know, but I am not a super-wikian by any means but I have been around Grandia Wiki for a long time now and have slowly added to it, and helped it to grow -starting with the original game and eventually buying an imported PS2 in order to play the later games so I could write about them!
Obviously, I am extremely biased towards the original game and the design reflects that but I have tried other themes in the past but I agree that the rustic charm of Justin's Grandia world has always helped me to make simple, yet (in my opinion) effective themes. I am always open to suggestion, but few people ever do comment so usually my way wins (which I do rather enjoy). I consider myself fairly good with image stuff so I can try out some things if people would be willing to give feedback. But it is not just about what looks cool, it is about what makes navigation simple and does not distract from the pages.
Thank you very much for tidying up and improving the table pages, which is not my strong point. If I do have a strong point, it is writing information on characters and objects in the game and putting together small information from in-game in order to give more depth to the world. I find my strange pleasure in creating pages on rather obscure things in the game (e.g. Young Platz or Elizabeth). The problem with these pages is that they are rather hidden as I have found few places to reference them in other pages (I believe these would be termed Orphaned pages).
I will take a look at some of the other areas you have identified as well. Thank you again for your continued support. All the best.
--23:15, March 20, 2013 (UTC)
RE:RE:Making the Wiki BetterEdit
I can see what you mean about not many people reading the talk pages. Maybe a front-page "headline" would be satisfactory?
Anywho, I've been working away at some other templates, improving on the ones we have already. I've also done some cleaning up and I'm almost finished with the original Grandia's item listings (only have the Items and Accessories to go now). I should have more time to edit after April 20th, as that is the date of my final university exam.
In any case, keep up the good work!