This Manual of Style outlines a standard of clean and consistent formatting for articles on this wiki. The formatting described here is a guideline and can be overridden when circumstances warrant it. These guidelines are not perfect for every situation. However, please try your best to keep to the advice outlined here 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 this wiki, more extensive style guidelines can be found on Wikipedia at Wikipedia Manual of Style.

Article structure[edit source]

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 influences what people contribute, where it goes, and how it is 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. Whenever possible, write an introduction for each section. Just like the article as a whole, each section should start with an introduction and have its subsections below. Try to use a shallow structure rather than a deep one. Too many nested sections usually lead to confusing or unreadable articles.

Above all, keep your layout consistent. The following sections offer some advice on how to keep articles clean, consistent, and clear.

Specific guidelines[edit source]

The wiki has guidelines on how to lay out several types of articles.

Disambiguation[edit source]

Shortcut:
DA:DISAMBIG

When two articles have the same title disambiguation should be used. There are two ways of doing disambiguation:

  • Adding a simple descriptive word in brackets at the end of the article title.
  • Creating a disambiguation page by using the {{Disambig}} template. The template itself should be placed at the bottom of the page.

If there are two or more articles with the same name, the wiki's general practice is to use that title for the more popular article and add a disambiguation to the other article or articles. For example Leliana's Song DLC retains its original title, while Leliana's Song (soundtrack) has a descriptive word added.

If there are two or more articles with similar names or search terms, a disambiguation page can be created. See Hawkwind for an example.

Articles with the same name that belong to different games should be disambiguated using the name of the game they describe. For example, the article about companions in Dragon Age: Origins is called "Companions (Origins)", while the article about companions in Dragon Age II is called "Companions (Dragon Age II)", and the article for companions in Dragon Age: Inquisition is called "Companions and advisors (Inquisition)".

There are several templates that redirect the user to other pages:

Redirects[edit source]

Shortcut:
DA:REDIRECT

Redirects should be created when the subject of an article can be referred to by multiple terms, names, or different spellings of the same term or name. When renaming an article, a redirect from the old name to the new name is automatically created. Redirects should not be created for plurals, since words in plural can be linked directly to the corresponding article with a title in singular with standard wiki markup: for instance, [[Mage]]s is displayed as "Mages" but links to "Mage".

Soft redirects[edit source]

Sometimes following a redirect may spoil the plot of a game or another installment of the Dragon Age series, e.g., by revealing a character's secret identity or a future transformation too early. In such cases, a "soft redirect" should be created instead: a short page containing a spoiler-free introduction of its subject's role in the plot and a short Involvement section revealing their true or future identity, hidden by an appropriate spoiler template. Soft redirects should be named in accordance with our naming conventions and added to any appropriate content categories that are not themselves spoilers (since the category bar cannot be hidden by a spoiler template). Additionally, the template {{soft redirect}}, which automatically adds articles to the Category:Soft redirects category, should be put at the top top of such articles.

Protagonist[edit source]

Shortcut:
DA:PROTAGONIST

The protagonist of each game should be called as follows:

As player characters can be male or female, write about them in a gender neutral way. Where pronouns must be used, use "they" and "their" instead of "he/she" or "his/hers".

Outside of direct quotation, the third person must be used in 'walkthrough' sections and the first person ("I") should only be used on talk pages. The second person ("you") is only acceptable when referring to the player in the real world, for example, in controls and character creation pages.

The term "the player" should only be used to refer to the individual playing the game, not a character.

Lead section[edit source]

Shortcut:
DA:LEAD

Unless an article is very short, it should start with an introductory lead section before the first subheading. The lead should not have any header. The table of contents, if displayed, appears after the lead section and before the first subheading.

The lead should be a concise overview of the article that establishes context and explains why the subject is interesting or notable. It should be either 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:

Andraste was the prophetess whose teachings served as the foundation for the formation of the Chantry.

The first time the article mentions the title, write it in bold using three apostrophes: '''article title''' produces article title. Avoid other uses of bold in the first sentence except for alternative titles of an article, for example:

The mother of Maric Theirin Moira, known as the Rebel Queen, was the one responsible for first inspiring the rebellion against the Orlesian occupation of Ferelden and personally led the rebel forces against them.

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

Dragon Age: The Stolen Throne is a novel set in the Dragon Age universe.

Do not put links in the bold reiteration of the title in the article's lead sentence. For example:

Nope.png "A dwarf is one of the three playable races in Dragon Age: Origins."
Yes.png "A dwarf is one of the three playable races in Dragon Age: Origins"

Infobox[edit source]

Infoboxes are standardized templates that contain an overview of the most important information in the article, such as a picture, common names and associations. If the article's topic qualifies for an infobox, it should be put in the lead section before the main text. There should not be more than one infobox per article. See Article layout examples for instructions on how to use infoboxes in specific article types.

Infobox contents can include unmarked spoilers, so readers wishing to avoid spoilers should also avoid infoboxes. Infoboxes should not include speculative information, but conditional information (information which only applies if the player makes certain choices) is allowed. Such information should be appended with the disclaimer <small>(conditional)</small> or <small>(conditionally)</small>, whichever is more appropriate. Other notations, such as "(possibly)", should not be used.

Table of contents[edit source]

By default, tables of contents (TOC) are displayed automatically in articles with at least four headings and are aligned to the left above the first section heading.

  • To force a TOC to be displayed (aligned to the left) use this code: __TOC__
  • To remove the TOC from a page use this code: __NOTOC__

The TOC can be aligned to the right, but only if it is very long (over 15 entries) and there isn't an information box at the top right corner of the article (rare exceptions exist). The code to display a TOC aligned to the right that floats next to the text is {{tocright}}.

Section headings[edit source]

Use equals signs around a section heading: ==Title== for a primary section and ===Title=== for a subsection. This has the same effect as using the markups <h2> and <h3> (<h2>Section heading</h2> and <h3>Subsection heading</h3>). Don't use single equal signs or <h1> for a section heading. That markup is reserved for article titles. Reusing it is bad style and risky coding.

Section headings are signposts to your article's structure. Make them short, simple and concise: you should usually drop a, an and the, omit unneeded pronouns, etc.

Do not reuse the article title for section headings. Searching an article is easier if the section headings are distinct from the title and from each other.

In Involvement sections use subheadings only if the subject of the article has appeared in multiple instalments of the franchise.

Write section headings in sentence case: all leters in lower case except for the first letter of the first word and the first letter of any proper nouns:

Yes.png "Founding and history"
Nope.png "Founding and History"


Yes.png "House Aeducan"
Nope.png "House aeducan"

Background section[edit source]

Whenever possible, try not to use a codex entry excerpt link in place of an actual written background. If a codex entry is the only source of background for a subject, try rephrasing the information to focus on the subject and maintain neutrality.

Images[edit source]

Main article: Dragon Age Wiki: Image guidelines

Caption

Images make articles memorable and attractive. They can speak where words fail. At the same time, misplaced or untidy images can detract from an article. When choosing images for an article, take into consideration their placement, size, and relevance to the section. Let images flow with the text instead of breaking it up.

For large images, such as screenshots, use the "thumb" (example:[[File:CoolImage.png|thumb]]) option, which displays them as thumbnails. Images should generally be right-aligned to enhance readability by allowing a smooth flow of text down the left margin. The "thumb" option does this by default. It is advised to place a right-aligned picture in the lead section in articles that don't have an infobox.

For more information, see Help:Images.

Galleries[edit source]

In some articles, the presence of many inline images detracts from readability. In these cases, using a gallery section is encouraged. Generally, a gallery section should contain no more than 12 images.

Example:

<gallery> BloodDragonBox.jpg|Caption Collector'sEdition.JPG|Caption </gallery>

yields

Tables[edit source]

Tables should use the "daotable" design when possible, and should include as little 'fancy' formatting as possible. Tables can be made sortable by adding a "sortable" class (use class="daotable sortable"). Example:

Heading one Heading two Heading three
Row data 1a Row data 2a Row data 3a
Row data 1b Row data 2b Row data 3b
Row data 1c Row data 2c Row data 3c
Row data 1d Row data 2d Row data 3d
{| class="daotable"
|-
! Heading one || Heading two || Heading three
|- 
| Row data 1a
| Row data 2a
| Row data 3a
|-
| Row data 1b
| Row data 2b
| Row data 3b
|- 
| Row data 1c
| Row data 2c
| Row data 3c
|-
| Row data 1d
| Row data 2d
| Row data 3d
|}

Navigation boxes[edit source]

Navigation boxes can use the template {{NavBox}} or be based on it (see Category:Navigation templates for a list of available templates on the wiki). Generally they should be placed at the end of an article, above the categories.

Article message boxes and tags[edit source]

If you believe suffers from inaccuracies or poor writing you can tag it for review with one of the tags described below. These tags generate a message box in the article. Articles tagged for review are added to one of the categories in Category:Site maintenance.

The layout guide advises to put message boxes at the top of the page after disambiguation links or within a section. An exception is the {{stub}} message box must always be at the top of the page.

The following subsections list some of the message boxes available in this wiki and the cases in which they should be used. For a complete list see Category:Article management templates.

Writing and formatting tags[edit source]

  • Stub {{stub}}: The article has very little information and it should be expanded.
  • Section stub {{section stub}}: The article is not a stub, but a section needs expansion. Use it within a section.
  • Missing information {{missing info|specify}}: Specific or key information is lacking.
  • Bad writing or poorly formatted {{cleanup|specify if possible}}: The article requires a rewrite because it is poorly written or does not adhere to our current policies and guidelines, or the article has formatting/layout issues.
  • Picture required {{pictures wanted}}: A picture should be added.
  • Problematic picture {{cleanup}}: A picture does not adhere to DA:IMAGE. Tag the picture.

Tags within the text[edit source]

  • Confirmation {{confirm}}: The contents of the article contradict relevant experience, seem narrowly subjective or otherwise suspect. Use only when familiar with the content. If in doubt add an entry to the corresponding talk page.
  • Citation {{citation needed}}: A citation (usually from a game developer) is required to support a statement.
  • Clarifying {{explain}}: Something is too vague and requires a better explanation.

Other tags[edit source]

  • Move {{move|page name suggested}}: An article should be renamed but you are unsure of how to name it or think that your renaming may be contested.
  • Merge {{merge|page to merge with}}: The article should be merged with another one and either be deleted or used as a redirect.
  • Split {{split}}: The page covers several topics and may benefit from splitting (e.g., it would be better to move the contents of a section to a new article).
  • Delete {{delete|reasons}}: A page about a character or a topic isn't needed (e.g., it isn't notable or it should be merged with another article).
  • Speedy delete {{speedydelete}}: A page should be deleted and no review is required (because it's spam, vandalism, etc.)

References[edit source]

Shortcut:
DA:REF

When you add information to an article that is not common knowledge, you should put a reference next to it. The markup for references is <ref>Details of reference</ref>.

This wiki has a set of citation templates that should be used when adding information from common sources, such as the BioWare forums. Check here to see if there is a template that suits your needs.

If you use the same reference several times within an article you should give it a distinct identifier so it can be reused. Use <ref name="Reference ID">Details of reference</ref> for the first reference. For all subsequent references, use just <ref name=Reference ID />.

When you use references, make sure that the page has a reference heading (see the basic layout guidelines for positioning). Put <references/> under this heading for the references to be displayed correctly. If the references section is very long use the {{Scroll box}} template to add a scroll box.

If you find an article that needs a reference add the {{Citation needed}} template next to the information in question.

Categories[edit source]

Categories should be added to the end of articles. A full list of categories can be found on Special:Categories. The markup for categories is [[Category:Categoryname]].

All articles should be linked via subcategories from Category:Dragon Age Wiki.

Quotes[edit source]

Shortcut:
DA:QUOTE

Head quotes[edit source]

Head quotes are located at the top of an article. They are only allowed in main quest pages, character pages and lore pages. Write {{quote}} before the infobox.

Don't use codex excerpts as head quotes to replace content.

Quotes section[edit source]

Only character pages should have standard quotes or exchanges, which should only be featured within a "Quotes" section. See DA:CHARACTER for more information.

Long quotes[edit source]

Use an italicized block quote for long quotes (over four lines). To format a block quote, use the HTML <blockquote> mark. In this format both margins are indented.

Don't use the wiki indentation mark ":" and don't enclose the block quote in quote marks.

Grammar[edit source]

Grammar is a writer's toolbox. You can't build good sentences without knowing how to use your tools. Since a wiki article must be as clear as possible for all the people reading it, editors must keep close to correct grammar standards to help clear communication.

Capitalization[edit source]

See also: Dragon Age Wiki:Naming conventions

Titles such as arl, ban, teryn or king start with a capital letter when used as a title (followed by a name): "King Maric", not "king Maric". When used generically, they should be in lower case: "Eamon is a powerful arl". The formal name of an office is treated as a proper noun. For example, "Cailan is the current King of Ferelden".

The names of classes should only be capitalized when used as proper nouns, i.e., as someone's name: "Warrior, go be evil"; but "That warrior is quite evil". The same works for the names of races; such as elf, kossith, human and dwarf; they should only be capitalized when used as proper nouns. Note that Qunari is not a race, so it should always be capitalized, regardless of how it is written in Dragon Age: Origins.

Names of works[edit source]

Use italics for the titles of works, such as books and games. Don't use italics for the titles of articles, chapters and quests. For example, use italics for Dragon Age: The Calling.

Tenses[edit source]

Shortcut:
DA:TENSE

As any work of fiction, the installments of the Dragon Age series (regardless of whether they are video games, novels, comic books, or any other material) take place in a "perpetual present tense" in the sense that their events unfold before the player/reader's eyes as if in the present (even though novels are technically written in the past tense). The narrated events thus continuously shift from the future, through the present, and into the past as each story progresses. Therefore, there is no single definitive "now" in the Dragon Age series but the one at which each individual player/reader is currently. Since this wiki is written for the benefit of the players and readers of the Dragon Age series, it should ease their access to its contents by recounting the events of individual stories in the present tense. On the other hand, events that led up to the current events should be described using the past tense to clearly indicate that they took place outside of the time frame of the described installment.

  • The present tense should be used to describe the involvement of characters, objects, locations, etc. in the plot of a particular installment of the Dragon Age series. Additionally, present tense should be used when writing about the last known state of an entity.
  • Past tense should be used to describe events that transpired "off-screen", such as historical lore and character backgrounds that refer to a time before the character was introduced to the Dragon Age series. Events that happened between installments should likewise be recounted in the past tense when described in the context of the more recent installment.
  • Future tense may be used at the contributing editor's discretion whenever it helps to make the article more readable.

Walkthrough articles should always use the present tense, because they are intended to be read in real time as the player progresses through a game. Occasionally, however, future tense may be used to warn the player of unforeseen consequences without spoiling the plot.

Writing[edit source]

I believe the road to hell is paved with adverbs―Stephen King

We now come to the meat of an article: the words themselves. When you're editing wikis, you're both academic and artist. You have to be accurate, but you also have to be interesting. Neither one can dominate; you have to skillfully balance both.

Keep your writing concise. Don't use two words where one will do. Keeping your writing simple makes it easy to understand and easy to expand on. Use complete sentences whenever possible. Use grammar as a toolbox: know the rules, but only break them on purpose.

Check your spelling and grammar. Do not use 'u' in place of 'you' or '2' in place of 'to'. Write the way you would for a class paper or a newspaper article.

Keep all the topics you cover within the scope of the article. This means that you don't need to give a detailed history of dwarves on the page about Oghren. Consider the article's title as your point of origin and write from that perspective. Link to more detailed articles or external sources for more information.

Keep strategies from distracting from walkthroughs. Where possible, relegate strategies to Strategy pages and link to them from walkthroughs. Exceptions to this include unique opponents who only appear in the quest the walkthrough is describing; and cases in which something about the quest, such as an item or the battleground topology, significantly changes the strategy. In the latter case describe in the walkthrough what is different in the quest and link to the strategy page for general considerations. When writing strategy pages, consider various playstyles, party compositions and difficulty levels as there is not a single way of achieving victory.

Write from an impersonal perspective. Do not use "I." For example, do not write, "Of all the threats from beyond the Veil, few demons are as insidious and deceptively deadly as the desire demon, as far as I know." Avoid drawing attention to the author (yourself) as much as possible.

Be bold. If you know something is wrong, correct it. If you think you could word something better, write it. If an article has a glaring deficiency, fill it. Even if your first attempt isn't golden, you can fix it later or someone else will come along and fix it for you. Don't be afraid to screw up.

Conclusion[edit source]

Every article can be improved (even this one). Following these guidelines will not ensure a perfect article the first time, but it will give the article a stronger skeleton. It's ultimately your job as an editor to put meat on it.

See also[edit source]

External links[edit source]

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.