To Do List

The potential scope of the Arcana Wiki is vast, and there are only few limits on what kind of material can be added. For the limits that do exist, see the What The Arcana Wiki Is Not page. This page lists a few ongoing projects which have higher priority than "normal" contributions since they either seek to make the Arcana Wiki more structured, or make use of certain structural elements which still need to be implemented.

Rating Pages

We have nearly 5,000 pages here, so sometimes it's hard for new visitors to know where to start, or how to find the good stuff. On the home page there's a tab that lists the top 10 highest rated pages, but since the highest rated page has just 5 up votes, it's hard to say if that's really the most useful or accurate system at the moment. So here's the #1 easiest thing you can do to help arcanawiki: rate some pages. Page rating happens via tiny buttons at the top or bottom of the pages. Whenever you're on a page and you like it, vote it up. You probably already have a rough mental list of the top 5 or top 10 pages you like here on arcanawiki. If so, please go to them and rate them right away. It will help direct other users to the goodstuff, and clue page creators in to what styles and types of content they should incorporate into pages in the future.

Adding Tags

One of the most vital tools in making the Arcana Wiki more structured are page tags. The tags of an entry are listed at the bottom of each page, and they can be edited by clicking the "tags" button - also at the bottom of each page. The most common tags can be seen in the "tag cloud" in the side bar. But that's not why they are so important.

The real importance of tags can be found in the so-called "ListPages" module used by the Wikidot.Com wiki code, since it can filter pages by tags - or can exclude pages with certain tags from specific lists. A good example can be seen on the Random Adventure Seeds page, which generates three random links to other pages. The random link generator on that page uses the following code:

[[module ListPages tags="-adventure_seed -campaign_setting -day -index -year" limit="3" order="random"]]
* %%linked_title%%

So, what does this code do, precisely? It generates three random links from all Arcana Wiki with the exception of pages with the adventure_seed, campaign_setting, day, index, and year tags. This means that it filters out all entries which do not hold inspirational material of their own, but are only link list and indexes to more interesting pages.

However, not all such tags have been implemented in all the appropriate pages - which they need to be if the Random Adventure Seeds (and similar pages like it) are to function properly. Therefore, the following tags need to be added to the appropriate pages:

  • adventure_seed tag: Needs to be added to all adventure seeds listed on the Random Adventure Seeds page. Up to date as of 11/2019
  • campaign_setting tag: Needs to be added to all individual entries on the campaign setting page. Up to date as of 11/2019
  • day tag: Needs to be added to all individual days listed in the various timeline entries.
  • index tag: Needs to be added to all index pages (i.e. all pages which only link to other pages with no game-relevant material on their own) which do not belong to one of the other categories listed here.
  • year tag: Needs to be added to all individual years listed in the timeline.

Porting Material from the TV Tropes Wiki

The TV Tropes Wiki is a fantastic resource for storytelling and adventure elements, characters and characterization, and pretty much everything else useful to the creation of adventures and campaigns other than game rules. As a result, the Arcana Wiki has begun mirroring its structure in the Trope section - but since the TV Tropes Wiki is so vast, this effort is still in its very earliest stages. Nevertheless, the effort is worthwhile since the various tropes can be used in myriad ways in other parts of the Arcana Wiki - as will be described below:

One important point to remember: The goal is to mirror the structure of the TV Tropes Wiki, not its content! Leave all the examples from various movies, TV shows, literature etc. out, and leave only the trope names and the links, and come up with a basic description of the trope in your own words. However, do add a link to the equivalent page on the TV Tropes Wiki so that others will be able to do their own research there.

Adding Material for the Random Character Generator

The Random Characters page is an example of how TV Tropes Wiki material can be used in the Arcana Wiki. Unfortunately (as of this writing), not enough material has been ported over from the TV Tropes Wiki to make this generator useful. Thus, we need additional material from the TV Tropes Wiki which falls under the tags described on that page.

Random Plots

The structure for this is not yet clear, but it would essentially be an expanded and more structured version of the Random Adventure Seeds page, with some additional design elements from the Random Characters generator. It would likely make use of randomly picked elements from the following lists:

as well as a few other random wiki pages as inspiration. The precise structure should be debated on the discussion page for the To Do List.

As a start towards this, we have a Random Crimes page… but it's bare-bones and underdeveloped at the moment. It makes some fairly dodgy use of basic english tags like "crimes", "criminals" and "location". This let us get the page up and running without much effort, since those tags were already scattered over the site. However, they're kind of generic, and there's not much consistency to how they've been applied across the site. It would probably be better if we used more precise tags that would only end up on pages that really fit the theme and function of the Random Crimes page. Something along the lines of rc_criminal instead of criminals, so more like the tag system used for the Random Nations generator (below). If someone has time to go around changing all those tags, that could be useful.

Random Campaign Settings

Similar to Random Plots above, only on a larger scope. We have a Random Nations generator, and a Random Planetary System generator. Both give you a list of random topics and descriptors for your country or world/solar system, which are pulled from the pool of arcanawiki pages that have the corresponding tags. To help build these out, you can go to the Random Nations and Random Planetary System pages, and on those pages will be collapsible fields that discuss which tags are used to do this, which should suggest what sorts of pages would be good contributions to build up the database these generators utilize.

In November 2019, I took a look at those pages, and determined that the following tags used by the random nations generator are the ones on the fewest pages:
rng_economy - pages about economic systems and types of currency
rng_government - pages about forms of government
rng_race - pages about intelligent species (especially copyright-free ones from myth or folklore)
rng_terrain - pages about major real-world terrain and biome types

If you have an interest in (or knowledge about) economics, government and politics, mythological creatures, or the environment and terrain, please consider making pages about topics of that sort, and put the appropriate tags on them so the Random Nations generator can use them.

The best way to help grow the Random Planetary System generator is to go over to the Interstellar Terrain page, build pages about items on the dead links there, and then tag them with the appropriate tags (such as rps_starsingle or rps_starmultiple, rps_habitable or rps_badplanet. Some of the more exotic things listed there will need rps_mega or rps_hazard.)

Thank You!

Thank you in advance for whatever time, effort and expertise you can spare towards making the ArcanaWiki a better resource for everyone.

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