Nintendo Wiki:Manual of Style

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This Manual of Style outlines a standard of clean, consistent formatting for articles on the Nintendo Wiki. The formatting described here is a guideline and can be overridden where circumstances warrant it. These guidelines will never be unerringly perfect for every situation. However, please try your best to keep to the advice outlined in this article so others may use your edits as an example when creating and editing their own articles.

These guidelines are a summary of the most important guidelines for the Nintendo Wiki, but a more expansive set of guidelines can be found on Wikipedia.

Article layout[edit]

One of the most important parts of wiki editing is how to structure an article. The structure is a powerful thing: it dictates what information the reader reads and when he or she reads it. It can influence what people contribute, where it goes, and how it might be written. Structure has the power to inform or confuse the same way good or bad writing does. Keep a well structured article, and you're more likely to have a high quality one.

Organize sections in an article in a hierarchical structure like you would an outline. Keep it logical, but feel free to forsake strict logic for readability. Wherever possible, try to have an introduction for each section. Just like the article as a whole, the section should start with an introduction and then have its subsections below it. Try using a shallow structure rather than a deep one. Too many nested sections usually leads to a confusing or unreadable article.

Above all, keep your layout consistent. Don't throw your reader a curve ball too often. The following sections will offer some good advice on keeping your articles clean, consistent, and clear.

Lead section[edit]

Unless an article is very short, it should start with an introductory lead section, before the first subheading. The lead should not be explicitly entitled == Introduction == or any equivalent header. The table of contents, if displayed, appears after the lead section and before the first subheading.

The lead should be capable of standing alone as a concise overview of the article, establishing context, and explaining why the subject is interesting or notable. It should be between one or two paragraphs long, and should be written in a clear and accessible style so that the reader is encouraged to read the rest of the article.

If possible, make the title the subject of the first sentence of the article. For example, write "Mario is the main protagonist of Nintendo's flagship ''[[Mario (franchise)|Mario]]'' franchise." The first time the article mentions the title, put it in bold using three apostrophes — <code><nowiki>'''article title''' produces article title. Avoid other uses of bold in the first sentence, except for alternative titles of an article. For example:

The Koopa Troopas, or simply Koopas, are turtle enemies in the Mario franchise.

Follow the normal rules for italics in choosing whether to put part or all of the title in italics. This will mainly apply to the titles of books and games:

Super Mario Sunshine is a Nintendo GameCube game in the [[Super Mario (series)|Super Mario]] series.

Do not put links in the bold reiteration of the title in the article's lead sentence. For example, do not do '''''[[Super Mario]] Sunshine'''''.

Table of contents[edit]

A table of contents will automatically appear in articles with a minimum of four headings (unless forced by the below options). By default this will be left-aligned above the first section heading.

  • To the force a TOC position (left-aligned): __TOC__
  • To completely remove the TOC from a page: __NOTOC__

The table of contents can be right-aligned - but only if it is very long (over 15 entries) and an information box is not occupying the top-right corner of the article (rare exceptions exist).

  • Right-aligned TOC that floats next to text: {{Right TOC}}

Section headings[edit]

Use the == (two equal signs) style markup for main headings, equivalent to <h2>. Do not use a single =. This is because a single = creates an <h1> heading which is already used by the page header and would be bad coding. Also, do not add links in subject headings. When edited, these sections become confusing in the edit history because of the link code. Consider instead putting the word in the first or second sentence of the section and linking it there.

Capitalize the first letter only of the first word and of any proper nouns in a heading and leave all of the other letters in lowercase. Use "Founding and history", not "Founding and History". Note that this is different from most section title rules you'll encounter elsewhere.

Avoid special characters in headings, such as an ampersand (&), a plus sign (+), curly braces ({}), or square braces ([]). In place of the ampersand, use the word "and" unless the ampersand is part of a formal name.

Always keep headings short and simple. Headings are guidelines to your page's structure and should inform the reader rather than confuse. To keep it short, avoid unnecessary words or redundancy in headings, i.e. avoid a, an, and the, pronouns, repeating the article title, and so on. Also, try to avoid giving identical titles to different sections.

Categories[edit]

Categories should be added to the end of an article - a full list can be found on Special:Categories. They take the form [[Category:Categoryname]].

All articles should be accessible starting from Category:Nintendo Wiki, via subcategories. An important thing to note is to use more specific categories if applicable; for example, on Koopa the Quick's page, add Category:Super Mario 64 characters instead of Category:Characters.

Grammar and punctuation[edit]

When writing articles it is important to follow these rules of the English language:

  1. Don't use netspeak or any similar slang. We are compiling a professional resource for Nintendo gamers.
  2. Keep your writing around a sixth-grade reading level. You don't need to fill it with big words just to make it sound smarter, especially if you're not certain how the word should be used.
  3. Vary your words. When writing, try to vary the words you use and the length of your sentences. It makes things sound more interesting.
  4. Capitalize words when appropriate. (see below)
  5. Use correct punctuation. This includes commas, periods, quotation marks, and apostrophes. (see below)
  6. Know the difference between homophones: there, their, and they're; here and hear; it's and its; who's and whose.

Capitalization[edit]

In naming an article, the first letter must always be capitalized due to technical restrictions; there is no way to not capitalize it, the system will do it for you. It should be like this anyway, except in the case of a brand name that begins with a small letter, such as iMac, iPod or eBay.

If the name of the article is a name, such as Nintendo Co., Ltd., The Pokémon Company, or Ash Ketchum, all letters which begin a new word should be capitalized. If the article has another word that is not the name of a person or specific name of a place, company, organization, or creature, but still uses a name, format it like Ash Ketchum's computer without capitalizing "computer". So, unless there is a reason for capitalization, don't do it. Generally, just follow what you learned in school; also, do not capitalize words like of, the, or, if, in, or and.

If an article name includes parentheses/brackets, it is asked that the content within said brackets, unless capitalized for good reason, be put in lowercase.

Capitalization examples chart
Proper naming Improper naming Reasoning
Ash Ketchum's computer Ash ketchum's computer Since Ketchum is part of the specific name, it should be capitalized
Nintendo of America Nintendo of america Not only is America the name of a specific country/continent, in this case, it is also part of the company's name
Nintendo of America Nintendo Of America Of should not be capitalized.
List of Pokémon by color List of Pokémon by Color Organized is a verb and Rarity isn't proper, heretofore, those words do not need to be capitalized.
Pokémon (series) Pokémon (Series) Series isn't proper, heretofore, those words should not be capitalized.

Use of accented "e" ("é")[edit]

Names of things which should contain an "é," should use the "é" rather than an "e;" For example, it should be Pokémon, not Pokemon.

Proper naming Improper naming
Pokémon Pokemon
Pokédex Pokedex
Poké Ball Poke Ball

It should also be noted that "Pokeball," "Pokéball," or "PokéBall" are all improper variations of the word "Poké Ball.

Punctuation[edit]

In addition to basic punctuation, it is important to know how to punctuate titles. Titles are always either in italics or inside quotation marks.

English style[edit]

As Nintendo-related media is localized primarily in the United States, American English spelling and punctuation must be used over British English. Exceptions are made if the Commonwealth spelling is the official spelling. For names of articles that have spellings which may vary in other forms of English, a redirect may be created for such spellings.

Here are some examples of American English vs. British English:

  • American: color, realize, recognize, honor, and behavior
  • British: colour, realise, recognise, honour and behaviour

Neutral point of view[edit]

When adding content to pages, please ensure that it adheres to a neutral point of view, as this wiki bases on confirmed fact, rather than theories and fan opinions.

While the Nintendo Wiki primarily uses American English, it still assumes English-language reading ability, not the location of the reader. Therefore, refrain from using terms in articles such as "overseas", "abroad", and "foreign" to refer to Japan and phrases such as "here in the west" and "over in Japan", and colloquially referring to Nintendo audiences in Japan as "the Japanese". Neutral phrases such as "outside of Japan", "Japanese audiences", or "in western countries" are preferred.

In order to remain as professional and encyclopedic as possible, please refrain from using second-person pronouns such as "you" and "your". Instead, address them as "the player" or use the passive voice instead of directly addressing the reader.

Quick reference[edit]

Text formatting[edit]

Bold[edit]

The first time the name of the article is used in an article, and only the first time, it should be printed in bold text (done by surrounding the name with ''' on each side). Also, if there is two names referring to the same thing for the article, both should be bolded for the first time. So, for example, if the articles name was "Pikachu" then, in the article, the first paragraph would go like this:

Pikachu is an Electric-type Pokémon and the mascot of the Pokémon franchise.

Which, when coded in an article, the above would look like this:

'''Pikachu''' is an Electric-type Pokémon and the mascot of the ''Pokémon'' franchise.

When naming an article, one should always consider some things:

Italics[edit]

Italics are used for large works like games, movies, comics, book, and even series (e.g. Pokémon series). For example, Super Smash Bros. Brawl must be italicized because it is a game.

To use italics, place two single quote marks before and after the title:

''Pokémon''

These are single quotes ('), not double quotes ("). Alternately, highlight the title you want to put in italics with your mouse and click the "I" button in the toolbar above the edit box (in between the B for bolding and AB for the Internal link).

The above rule does not apply to headlines. For episodes and manga chapters, double quotes (") should be used instead.

Links[edit]

To link to another article on the Nintendo Wiki, you must put [[]] around it. To link to an article in Wikipedia, use [[wikipedia:|]] and put the article title inside. If an article does not exist by that name, the link will show up as dark red, like this, and be listed under the wanted pages. External links will show up as blue.

You only need to link to another page once in any given article. Most of the time this is the first time that article's title comes up, but there are some exceptions to this. Be efficient when using links, and do not create unnecessary piped links; for example, type in [[Item]] instead of [[Item|Items]], as letters added next to the right square brackets are piped automatically. It is also not recommended to link words in a headline.

Examples
  • [[Pikachu]]
  • [[wikipedia:Pokémon|the Wikipedia entry for the franchise.]]

Images[edit]

Main article: Help:Image

A user can upload any image they feel is necessary to be placed into the articles of the wiki. However, there are rules to uploading images to the site.

Uploaded images can be of box arts, gameplay, menus, artwork, sprites, television show screen-shots, card images, etc. However, since this is a fact-based wiki, fan-made content will be removed if the image(s) are used in articles. When uploading images, please be cautious of whether that image is necessary or not. Fanon images can be only be uploaded to the wiki if you keep them to your userpage. Images uploaded to the wiki also need to have a license added to them, preferably by the uploader.

To upload an image to the wiki, use either Special:Upload. These pages should include a summary box as well. It is asked of the community that users should upload their images with summaries including what game/episode/etc. the image is of/from as well as what is going on in the image or what the image portrays.

Attribution[edit]

We would like to thank Pokémon Wiki and Wii Sports Wiki for originally writing portions of this page.