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UESPWiki:Community Portal/Mod Info in Articles

UESPWiki:Community Portal
This is an archive of past UESPWiki:Community Portal discussions. Do not edit the contents of this page, except for maintenance such as updating links.

Mod Info in Articles (11/06)

I noticed this while skimming over the Reference Desk. Copying it here since it's a policy question for further discussion.

I'm running across several articles where readers have contributed information related to mods for the game (i.e. this statement is not true, you can download XYZ mod and get around this). Do we have a policy or guideline for these situations? I don't think it should be left on the main article page since not all players have access to mods (i.e., XBOX). Should this be moved to a Notes section at the bottom, or moved to the talk page of the article, or just deleted?--Hoggwild5 12:14, 9 November 2006 (EST)

Just delete it, briefly citing why you're deleting it in the edit summary. With my modest modding skills, I could create a mod that changes Martin Septim's name to Fred Flintstone. We wouldn't be going from article to article changing Martin's name to Fred just because of my mod. --Aristeo | Talk 12:24, 9 November 2006
Agreed. With the many mods out there, it is impossible to mention every one. Even just documenting OOO changes would be too much. Only things that the official mods and patches change should be mentioned in the wiki. The mod Wiki can help with the rest. This problem is most prevalent in Oblivion pages (the namespace main page of which, by the way, has more views since its creation then the Main Page). -- Dylnuge(talk · edits) 21:26, 7 December 2006 (EST)

Outsetting because of length...

While I agree that you could easily go overboard on this (e.g., it's probably not that necessary to note that there's a mod that makes the emperor look more like Patrick Stewart), there are a number of cases in which a reference to a mod or utility is desirable. For example:

  • Knights of the Nine suffers from a bug that will break a major quest if the mod is not loaded last. A note for PC users pointing towards mod reordering utilities is desirable. Moreover, given recent discoveries about mod-de-isolation, it now looks likely that it will be possible to make an esp that patches this problem. This also would be desirable to post.
  • Oblivion suffers from a number of bugs that have been fixed with the Unofficial Oblivion Patch. This also is desirable to post on regular articles that note such bugs.
  • An article on face creating for Oblivion should also include info (or at least pointers to more info) on the several tools for importing/exporting faces. I think that such an article should also say something like: There are many mods that tweak/add eyes, hair, skin textures, racial face shapes, etc. You can find listings of such mods at XXXX (where XXX may be a Tes4Mod page or more likely another site or a modlist).
  • An article on player leveling probably should note that there are mods that substantially change player leveling and point to such a list of mods somewhere. (Personally, I think this is a bit borderline, but it's hard for me to think that an article on player leveling would be complete without at least mentioning this.

So, where do we draw the line? Hard to say, but here's some specific cases:

  • A mod list. For Oblivion, we've largely ceded this to other sites. If we did have it, then it should go under Tes4Mod. (Note that we do have a few Morrowind mod lists under Tes3Mod.)
  • A discussion of the internal leveling strategy in Oblivion (i.e., something comparing stock Oblivion vs. Oscuro's Overhaul vs. Francesco's Creatures, etc.) This should go under Tes4Mod.
  • A strategy guide for playing Oscuro's Oblivion Overhaul. OOO is a major extension of Oblivion used by many players, and it's huge. Such a guide could be large and useful, and I think it falls outside the purview of the other Oblivion modding sites. Should go under Tes4Mod, probably with it's own category/hierarchy.

In general, I think that mention of mods/tools should be: 1) an addenda to the main article, 2) highly germane to the article. I.e., it should be the case that if the reader is on the pc and interested in the topic, then she'll very likely want to know about the mod/tool. A possible guideline:

If the mod fixes what is commonly regarded as an error or strong design limitation that is described in the article, then the mod is probably sufficiently germane to mention.

Info Separation: In general, the PC specific info should be on the article page, but distinct from the main article, and set apart in a consistent way, e.g., with a section starting On the PC.... (It is indeed unfortunate that console-system users don't have access to the tools and capabilities that PC users do. However, their limitation doesn't mean that we should handicap PC users to match console system.)

Similarly: XBox (On the XBox...), PS3 (On the PS3...) and XBox/PS3 (On Consoles...)

--Wrye 21:55, 7 December 2006 (EST)

Perhaps a simple tag: "The following information is specific to the PC version of the game." with that content in a box beneath the tag? — EndarethTalkEdits 22:51, 7 December 2006 (EST)
I'm not sure that that there's a one size fits all solution. Here are several example pages:
Note these are all mostly tool/console relevant. (Although face generation has some mod related info (the chargen with numbers mod). I don't think that a box would work well on any of these -- but I could be wrong.
--Wrye 23:54, 7 December 2006 (EST)
Template:pconly is a new template. What do you think of putting this on every page/section? (Type {{pconly}})
How about a little icon/image that floats over to the right (like those irc, admin notes, but smaller). Something like that would clearly mark the section as pc (or console, or whatever) without interfering with the text too much. Also, you might try experimenting to see how different approaches work on the three pages I've mentioned above. --Wrye 22:22, 16 December 2006 (EST)
Personally, I don't see the need for a new template. I mean, as long as the information is clearly stated to be only for PC a the beginning the actual text, I think a template is going to needlessly clutter up pages and be the source of a good bit of work to actually implement on a large scale. --Ratwar 00:45, 17 December 2006 (EST)
Gotta agree with Wrye on this. Some mods are too silly or irrelevant to include on this site; i.e., A Very Silly Slaughterfish Mod, as funny as it is. But in some cases, mod info is useful information. Just like anything else on this site, its usefulness has to be evaluated on a case by case basis. Hopefully people won't get carried away, but that's limited by what mods area actually out there.
There was a question (of sorts) on the Ref Desk about the Skeleton Key, which made me want to add info on the item page about Haldur's Alternate Skeleton Key: this mod edits the key's script, allowing you to toggle (by clicking on it in your inventory) between the regular key (+40 Security bonus) and using it while still increasing your Security skill to base 100 (it removes the DASkeletonKey Ability with the +40 bonus, so it's just like having an unbreakable lockpick). Nephele said it seemed relevant enough and referred me to this discussion.
The site has info on cheats and other such things, why exclude mods? Especially that mods are a big attraction to the game as many people want to add to or change vanilla Oblivion. One place where mod info seems crucial is to answer all the Gripes (who had the pleasure of putting that page together? :D ) or the Tes4Mod:Mod_Ideas|Mod Ideas. Give me the go ahead, and I'll try to answer as many of those gripes as possible with links to mods that fix or at least address the relevant issue.
The template, or at least a "This is mod info and for PC only" icon, would make things simpler for editors and clearer for readers.
In terms of the Oblivion:Items page, it should definitely have a big message at the top saying that only PC users can access these codes through the console so Console players don't ask on the forums all the time about console commands (was that confusing enough?). I know it says hit the ` key on the keyboard, but ... (never mind that).
-- Felic 12:08, 2 February 2007 (EST) [2:08AM GMT+8]
Adding mod info to Gripes sounds like a good idea. I think that it also illustrates the difficulty of a template, since the matching really needs to be line for line. What I would suggest is table-ifying the page. Two columns: On the left is the gripe, on the right is the mod/tool solution. As for what goes into the solution, use your judgement. If there's 1-2 solution mods, list them. If there's a lot, maybe just list the top ones. For flagging the info as PC Only, I think that the column header should say PC Only with a very small (16 pixels?) little icon of a PC. I would say for now, just take a shot at Gripes and see how that comes out. (Mod Ideas is kind of a zoo -- it would be a lot of work to handle that page.) --Wrye 14:10, 2 February 2007 (EST)
Okies, workin' on it! -- Felic 06:15, 4 February 2007 (EST)
Please check my Talk page for my proposal for a table format. I was going to do as you suggest, but thought that some gripes might actually have a solution on the XBox or PS3 (no, not mods of course), so I went with this instead. Of course, each row would only exist if there was information belonging there, so there probably won't be many rows with XBox/PS3 information. I made the XBox/PS3 icons myself, so there's no licensing issues. The PC icon is PD. -- Felic 00:58, 5 February 2007 (EST)
First installment is on my Talk page for your review before I post it to the Gripes page. I added the line in the intro about using icons, and the links to mods in the User Interface section. -- Felic 05:09, 15 February 2007 (EST)
After some discussion with Wrye, I updated the Gripes page. I'll still work on it to add mods. Ratwar suggested Oblivion_Talk:Gripes#Reformating|reformatting it, but his proposal is no longer on his Sandbox. -- Felic 03:02, 16 February 2007 (EST)

Moved from Community Portal --Nephele 02:38, 25 February 2007 (EST)

Unofficial Oblivion Patch (10/07)

It is said that no idea is ever too stupid to discuss, so here goes...

Of the multitude of patches, mods and tools that exist for the games, the one that probably gets mentioned the most on the site (with the possible exception of Wrye Bash!) is the Unofficial Oblivion Patch. The latest example is here. The patch is almost invaluable as it fixes so many of the problems people have with the game. What do people think of mentioning these on the relevant pages? I know we don't usually promote 3rd party mods and I know this is only of use for PC users, but it might help preempt some of the queries we get and might help a lot of people. --RpehTalk 09:11, 3 October 2007 (EDT)

It certainly is worth discussing as it will be helpful. But I personally don't prefer unofficial stuff, may be I am wrong, but that's just my preference. I actually think the policy of this site of not promoting 3rd party mods is very good and we should stick to that. One reason is that there are too many of them and if you include one many others may creep in. --Mankar Camoran 11:21, 3 October 2007 (EDT)
Moved from Community Portal. --Wrye 15:43, 4 October 2007 (EDT)
If you'll review the discussion above, you'll see that back in February we sort of worked out some guidelines about where/how to have mod info in articles. That policy has been used somewhat, but not as much as it should. A good example of use is on the Shivering:Reference_Bug page. For other uses see links section for the   image.
Back to immediate point... I completely agree that UOP should be documented in main pages, as appropriate, and following guidelines, and current usage. Set it appart somewhat, make sure that it distinct with generic discussion (separate paragraphy, mark with pc icon image, etc.). --Wrye 16:05, 4 October 2007 (EDT)

I agree that this site shouldn't be promoting 3rd party mods in general, however, I think that the UOP (and its companion USIP) are a different kettle of fish. Rather than adding new content, which is the usual purpose of a mod, these fix existing issues with the game, and I would therefore consider them virtually essential for PC users. As a result, I am in favour of mentioning them on pages that describe bugs they fix. However, because these mods are not available to everybody, I'm not sure about including them in the main text of a page. I like Wrye's suggestion of using an icon to indicate unofficial bug fixes - possibly even a 'UOP' or 'USIP' specific icon? - but I would lean towards putting it against the individual bug, in this kind of format:

  • Description of a bug or glitch
    •   This bug/glitch is fixed by the Unofficial Oblivion Patch

To take the Ulterior Motives page as an example, something like this:

  • If you wait inside the castle for 24 hours after Mercator Hosidus tells you to come back tomorrow, it is possible that Mercator just keeps telling you to come back tomorrow. If this happens, go outside the castle before waiting (or finish other quests).
    •   This is fixed by the Unofficial Oblivion Patch

With a link to the UOP itself (e.g. the page at

--Gaebrial 03:26, 10 October 2007 (EDT)

Purely on the icon fromt I'd been playing with that already. What do you think to one of these: Image:OB-ico-UOP.png or Image:OB-ico-UOP2.png? (They're both UOP in the Daedric font). I'd link to a page on the wiki too, rather than directly to the patch - but otherwise, that's the kind of thing I had in mind. --RpehTCE 04:38, 10 October 2007 (EDT)
I would recommend against a special icon (esp. one with unreadable (to most people) Daedric lettering). It's PC specific fix, so the pc icon is the thing to use -- indicating this sort of content is exactly the purpose of the pc icon. Also, I agree with Rpeh that it's best to link to a page on this site rather than to the download page itself. Also, this is part of what the Tes4Mod namespace is for, so...
  • If you wait inside the castle for 24 hours after Mercator Hosidus tells you to come back tomorrow, it is possible that Mercator just keeps telling you to come back tomorrow. If this happens, go outside the castle before waiting (or finish other quests).
I.e., use computer icon, use regular size text, link to our own page (in tes4mod space) describing UOP (would be a fairly brief page, since we don't won't to repeat UOP's huge bugfix list). Our page would describe UOP briefly and link to download site.
Incidentally, it might be nice to have a bug icon. In this case, it would be placed just before "If you wait...".
Clarification on tes4mod space... The Tes4Mod namespace is for articles on modding on on unofficial mods. (Tes3Mod namespaces fills the same role for Morrowind.) While those namespaces have ended up being used mostly for modding technical info, there are intended to also serve for documentation of non-official mods. (You'll see a little bit of this on Morrowind Mod:Mods.)
--Wrye 16:31, 10 October 2007 (EDT)
Hmm... I see what you mean but I'd say it's a good idea to have a separate icon for something we're explicitly documenting. The two icons I came up with were both variants of the same idea and I'm quite prepared to accept that idea wasn't a good one and that anybody with a better icon should submit it. My reason for suggesting an icon specifically for the UOP is that it (claims to) fix several hundred problems (I'd say thousands but a lot are about moving trees around) and that separating fixes in that mod might make people realize it's a discrete entity and that they don't have to fish around to fix their particular problem. Of course, if any other mod writer wanted similar treatment, I'm sure that could be arranged! --RpehTCE 16:56, 10 October 2007 (EDT)
Put it this way, if there should be a UOP specific icon, then there should probably also be a Wrye Bash specific icon, since Wrye Bash fixes quite a few problems (animation bug, bloating, face import, spell deletion, etc.). And there are other mods that fix some other minor issues. Should they also have their own specific icons? When do you decide when a mod is large enough to warrant it's own icon? It's just too complicated to have a lot of different icons.
Again, for readers, the only thing that's relevant is "this following paragraph is pc specific" and to communicate that, we should just have one standard icon -- i.e., the pc icon. --Wrye 20:21, 10 October 2007 (EDT)
Fair enough - let's use the PC icon. I feel the UOP is big enough to warrant its own - and maybe there could be a monkey picture for Wrye Bash :) - but I'd agree having different icons for everything wouldn't be a good idea. I've created the Oblivion Mod:Unofficial Oblivion Patch page along with a very basic template ({{UOP}}) to simplify adding the icon and link. I've also added it to Ulterior Motives (just that one for now) so you can see it in action. If everybody's happy with that then we can start spreading the word! --RpehTCE 06:54, 11 October 2007 (EDT)
Looks good to me. --Wrye 16:26, 11 October 2007 (EDT)

I noticed that there's now a   This bug is fixed by the Unofficial Oblivion Patch. tag in the UESP, which is great.. I've started adding it to all the pages where there are bugs listed that the UOP/USIP/UOMP fix. However, the tag says:

"This bug is fixed by the Unofficial Oblivion Patch"

and the tag had already been used on some of the non-UOP (ie Shivering Isles) bugs. So it may be an idea to change the tag to:

"This bug is fixed by an unofficial patch", make "unofficial patch" the link, and I already updated the page that it links to so that it lists the UOP/USIP/UOMP separately. --Kivan (PM to Wrye) 1/2/2007

As per discussion above, it's desirable to treat U(X)P specially -- UESP generally does not link to mods related to the article. U(X)P is the exception. (Due to completeness and quality.) So "Unofficial Patch" is too general. Two options:
  1. Have three different templates (UOP, USIP, UOMP). This seems like best solution to me. Though probably all templates ought to point to Oblivion Mod:Unofficial Oblivion Patch.
  2. Alternatively, the text of the template itself Template:UOP might be modified -- but the alternative text would seem to verbose. ("Fixed by the Unofficial Oblivion/Shivering Isles/Official Mods Patch."? Uggh.)
But, I'm not that active at UESP anymore, so I'll let you and the other editors sort it out.--Wrye 22:04, 3 January 2008 (EST)
I'd vote for having separate USIP and UOMP tags. I think it would be more useful for readers to be told which specific patch is applicable, rather than having readers install UOP then potentially complain, for example, that it didn't fix the sitting-down problem in Oblivion:The Ultimate Heist (which is caused by Knights of the Nine, and therefore requires UOMP rather than UOP even if one of the symptoms appears in a "vanilla" portion of Oblivion). As Wrye says, all of the tags could still point to the single Tes4Mod page, since most of the overview information is applicable to all three mods. And a reader who wants to install one probably wants to learn about the others, too. --NepheleTalk 22:44, 3 January 2008 (EST)
Addendum: I've gone ahead and created Template:UOMP and Template:USIP, since I wanted to add comments about the KotN sitting glitch to non-KotN pages. --NepheleTalk 01:05, 4 January 2008 (EST)