Forum:Manual of style:Referencing dialogue format

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Recently the question of format in regards to the referencing of character dialogue came in to question.

I believe the best course of action is to make this current format officially standard.

Ant2242[edit source]

  • Pointing to the character, to avoid ambiguity.
  • Pointing out the dialogue file. If the character has has multiple ones express them in the parenthesis.
  • Including the question, where applicable, for context.
    • For pre-Gamebro dialogue the brackets and numbers must be included in the reference for accuracy.
  • For Gamebro dialogue the {{Tooltip||}} must be used for whatever is in the "Script Notes" section of the individual line. This provides the context, and tone of the dialogue. (See Enclave soldier log)
Examples;
For questions and answers.
[[Jules (Fallout 2)|Jules]]' [[NcJules.msg|dialogue]]: ''"{578}{}{Tell me about the Salvatore Family.}"'' (The Chosen One)<br/>''"{695}{}{Quiet bunch. They're led by Louis Salvatore, an original gangster gettin' on in years. Their territory's on the West Side; their crib's this bar called Salvatore's on 2nd Street. Don't be making trouble there.}"''
Jules' dialogue: "{578}{}{Tell me about the Salvatore Family.}" (The Chosen One)
"{695}{}{Quiet bunch. They're led by Louis Salvatore, an original gangster gettin' on in years. Their territory's on the West Side; their crib's this bar called Salvatore's on 2nd Street. Don't be making trouble there.}"
For multiple files of the same character that has the same lines in different files.
Scribe's dialogue ([[GENSCRIB.MSG]] [[SCRIBEB.MSG]]): ''"{114}{}{Did you know that the hydrogen atom is 99.9843425% empty space?}"''
Scribe's dialogue (GENSCRIB.MSG SCRIBEB.MSG): "{114}{}{Did you know that the hydrogen atom is 99.9843425% empty space?}"
For multiple files of the same character that has different lines in different files.
[[Scribe (Fallout)|Scribe]]'s dialogue ([[GENSCRIB.MSG]]): ''"{112}{}{Did you know the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction?}"''<br/>([[SCRIBEB.MSG]]): ''"{112}{}{Did you know that the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction? Similar to what ended the old world, except it's fission, no fusion.}"''
Scribe's dialogue (GENSCRIB.MSG): "{112}{}{Did you know the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction?}"
(SCRIBEB.MSG): "{112}{}{Did you know that the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction? Similar to what ended the old world, except it's fission, no fusion.}"
For Gamebro questions and answers. (In the far future I eventually wish to add the audio in/next to here somehow. I was thinking of a modified iquote template.)
[[Elizabeth Jameson]]'s [[Elizabeth Jameson's dialogue|dialogue]]: ''"Sure, I've got all the time in the world."'' (The Lone Wanderer)<br/>''"Good. As I'm sure you've noticed, the Brotherhood operates all over the DC ruins, often detached from the main base here at the Citadel. We're short on communication equipment, so many of the groups in the field operate as independent cells without standing orders. Sometimes... I'm afraid that their missions end in their deaths. As keeper of the Scrolls, it's my charge to write of each fallen Brother's deeds."''
Elizabeth Jameson's dialogue: "Sure, I've got all the time in the world." (The Lone Wanderer)
"Good. As I'm sure you've noticed, the Brotherhood operates all over the DC ruins, often detached from the main base here at the Citadel. We're short on communication equipment, so many of the groups in the field operate as independent cells without standing orders. Sometimes... I'm afraid that their missions end in their deaths. As keeper of the Scrolls, it's my charge to write of each fallen Brother's deeds."
For Gamebro conversations. (Conversations between NPCs, not the player character.)
The following prompts and responses are selected randomly in ''DLC03WQBigsleyScribeConv07''
[[Scribe (Fallout 3)|Scribe]]: ''"{{Tooltip|They're a week late, sir.|a little shocked his boss isn't taking this seriously}}"''
Scribe: ''"{{Tooltip|Should we send out a search party?|concerned}}"''
[[Bigsley]]: ''"{{Tooltip|For a couple of Wasteland hustlers and a pack Brahmin?|dismissive, doesn't want to waste resources on a search party}}"''
Scribe: ''"{{Tooltip|What about our men?|making a case for a rescue}}"''
Bigsley: ''"{{Tooltip|I'm not wasting any more resources.|ending an argument. exhausted}}"''
Scribe: ''"{{Tooltip|Yessir.|skeptical}}"''
Bigsley: ''"{{Tooltip|If Lyons wants to chase after his deliveries, fine. Let HIM do it. But I'm done wasting resources and risking lives on this pet project of his.|wearily explaining his position... annoyed.}}"''
Scribe: ''"{{Tooltip|For what it's worth, you aren't the only one who feels that way.|agreeing with his superior}}"''
Bigsley: ''"{{Tooltip|Thank you. Now, kindly get the hell out of here. I need to think.|trying to seem jovial, but failing. exhasuted.}}"''
The following prompts and responses are selected randomly in DLC03WQBigsleyScribeConv07
Scribe: "They're a week late, sir."
Scribe: "Should we send out a search party?"
Bigsley: "For a couple of Wasteland hustlers and a pack Brahmin?"
Scribe: "What about our men?"
Bigsley: "I'm not wasting any more resources."
Scribe: "Yessir."
Bigsley: "If Lyons wants to chase after his deliveries, fine. Let HIM do it. But I'm done wasting resources and risking lives on this pet project of his."
Scribe: "For what it's worth, you aren't the only one who feels that way."
Bigsley: "Thank you. Now, kindly get the hell out of here. I need to think."

--Ant2242 (talk) 20:07, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

Tagaziel[edit source]

I agree that a unified format is necessary. However, I would like to propose a few changes to make the references clearer and more user-friendly.

It combines the advantages of both types of references currently in place, while clearly identifying who speaks what part and creating an uniform appearance.

Examples;
For questions and answers.
[[Chosen One]]: ''"{578}{}{Tell me about the Salvatore Family.}"''<br/>[[Jules (Fallout 2)|Jules]]: ''"{695}{}{Quiet bunch. They're led by Louis Salvatore, an original gangster gettin' on in years. Their territory's on the West Side; their crib's this bar called Salvatore's on 2nd Street. Don't be making trouble there.}"''<br/>([[NcJules.msg]])
Chosen One: "{578}{}{Tell me about the Salvatore Family.}"
Jules: "{695}{}{Quiet bunch. They're led by Louis Salvatore, an original gangster gettin' on in years. Their territory's on the West Side; their crib's this bar called Salvatore's on 2nd Street. Don't be making trouble there.}"
(NcJules.msg)
For multiple files of the same character that has the same lines in different files.
[[Scribe (Fallout)|Brotherhood Scribe]]: ''"{114}{}{Did you know that the hydrogen atom is 99.9843425% empty space?}"''<br/>([[GENSCRIB.MSG]], [[SCRIBEB.MSG]])
Brotherhood Scribe: "{114}{}{Did you know that the hydrogen atom is 99.9843425% empty space?}"
(GENSCRIB.MSG, SCRIBEB.MSG)
For multiple files of the same character that has different lines in different files.
[[Scribe (Fallout)|Scribe]]: ''"{112}{}{Did you know the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction?}"''<br/> ''"{112}{}{Did you know that the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction? Similar to what ended the old world, except it's fission, no fusion.}"''<br/>([[GENSCRIB.MSG]], [[SCRIBEB.MSG]])
Scribe : "{112}{}{Did you know the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction?}"
"{112}{}{Did you know that the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction? Similar to what ended the old world, except it's fission, no fusion.}"
(GENSCRIB.MSG, SCRIBEB.MSG)
Gamebryo statements
[[Alice McLafferty]]: "''Bottle caps do wear out or get damaged. Some people even insist on using bottle caps in explosive devices for some reason. We make it a point to scour Pre-War bottling plants and recover or disable the bottle cap presses. It seems we missed one.''"<br/>([[Alice McLafferty's dialogue]])
Alice McLafferty: "Bottle caps do wear out or get damaged. Some people even insist on using bottle caps in explosive devices for some reason. We make it a point to scour Pre-War bottling plants and recover or disable the bottle cap presses. It seems we missed one."
(Alice McLafferty's dialogue)
For Gamebryo questions and answers.
[[[Lone Wanderer]]: ''"Sure, I've got all the time in the world."''<br/>[[Elizabeth Jameson]]: ''"Good. As I'm sure you've noticed, the Brotherhood operates all over the DC ruins, often detached from the main base here at the Citadel. We're short on communication equipment, so many of the groups in the field operate as independent cells without standing orders. Sometimes... I'm afraid that their missions end in their deaths. As keeper of the Scrolls, it's my charge to write of each fallen Brother's deeds."''<Br/>([[Elizabeth Jameson's dialogue]])
Lone Wanderer: "Sure, I've got all the time in the world."
Elizabeth Jameson: "Good. As I'm sure you've noticed, the Brotherhood operates all over the DC ruins, often detached from the main base here at the Citadel. We're short on communication equipment, so many of the groups in the field operate as independent cells without standing orders. Sometimes... I'm afraid that their missions end in their deaths. As keeper of the Scrolls, it's my charge to write of each fallen Brother's deeds."
(Elizabeth Jameson's dialogue)
For Gamebryo conversations. (Conversations between NPCs, not the player character.)
The following prompts and responses are selected randomly in ''DLC03WQBigsleyScribeConv07''
[[Scribe (Fallout 3)|Scribe]]: ''"{{Tooltip|They're a week late, sir.|a little shocked his boss isn't taking this seriously}}"''
Scribe: ''"{{Tooltip|Should we send out a search party?|concerned}}"''
[[Bigsley]]: ''"{{Tooltip|For a couple of Wasteland hustlers and a pack Brahmin?|dismissive, doesn't want to waste resources on a search party}}"''
Scribe: ''"{{Tooltip|What about our men?|making a case for a rescue}}"''
Bigsley: ''"{{Tooltip|I'm not wasting any more resources.|ending an argument. exhausted}}"''
Scribe: ''"{{Tooltip|Yessir.|skeptical}}"''
Bigsley: ''"{{Tooltip|If Lyons wants to chase after his deliveries, fine. Let HIM do it. But I'm done wasting resources and risking lives on this pet project of his.|wearily explaining his position... annoyed.}}"''
Scribe: ''"{{Tooltip|For what it's worth, you aren't the only one who feels that way.|agreeing with his superior}}"''
Bigsley: ''"{{Tooltip|Thank you. Now, kindly get the hell out of here. I need to think.|trying to seem jovial, but failing. exhasuted.}}"''
The following prompts and responses are selected randomly in DLC03WQBigsleyScribeConv07
Scribe: "They're a week late, sir."
Scribe: "Should we send out a search party?"
Bigsley: "For a couple of Wasteland hustlers and a pack Brahmin?"
Scribe: "What about our men?"
Bigsley: "I'm not wasting any more resources."
Scribe: "Yessir."
Bigsley: "If Lyons wants to chase after his deliveries, fine. Let HIM do it. But I'm done wasting resources and risking lives on this pet project of his."
Scribe: "For what it's worth, you aren't the only one who feels that way."
Bigsley: "Thank you. Now, kindly get the hell out of here. I need to think."

My argument is that there is really no need to point to the dialogue file in the reference, as that information is already present in the linked character articles. We should strive for minimalism that doesn't compromise readability.

Second, conversations become unreadable when you have two different characters mentioned in the same line. The reader should be able to immediately identify who speaks the part, rather than have to reach the end of the line to learn that the opening line isn't actually spoken by the cited character.

Third, the format I propose is pretty much standard throughout wikis. I can't really recall a citation that would refer to the character's dialogue file, rather than what they actually say or converse about. Tagaziel (talk) 21:12, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

Comments[edit source]

Added my proposal, since that's the real issue here. As a side note, I will veto any attempts to add audio files to references. That would put us in breach of the fair use doctrine and we must operate legally. Tagaziel (talk) 21:12, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

I didn't know this. Since that is the case, I will not push for it farther.--Ant2242 (talk) 21:55, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

Is tooltips broken for anyone else? Whenever I hover over one, it bugs out and I have to click and hold it to read it. Also, it doesn't stem from the correct location, it's always one line down from where it's suppose to stem from. Shadowrunner(stuff) 19:13, 14 March 2014 (UTC)

Tooltip works fine for me.--Ant2242 (talk) 19:14, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
I'm with Shadow, it's not working correctly - the bubble's arrow points to the line down from where it should be. Nitty the Kitty! 22:04, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
I am using Google Chrome.--Ant2242 (talk) 02:01, 15 March 2014 (UTC)

Aside from tooltips not fucntioning, I think the best way to handle single-person dialogue is to keep it how it currently is with [XYZ's dialogue: "Blah blah blah"] (with the dialogue linked), but alter how conversation is formatted. It should reflect who is doing the talking, and link to both characters, PC and NPC alike. Since the dialogue files can be found on character pages, it isn't a terribly big deal to not include a direct link to their dialogue file. It does however trouble me how much space is usually taken up by long separated dialogues (with forced line breaks) and back-and-forth dialogues. We could use Template:Expandable content to make the Reference section not so cumbersome. --Kastera (talk) 04:25, 15 March 2014 (UTC)

I think linking the dialogue is entirely superfluous, as it's already linked to on character pages. Including it for some references, but not for others is inconsistent.
As for the reference bloat, I've ported a template from a wiki I helped run. See here.
To be honest, I'd prefer to settle on a common style for referencing ASAP, so that we can focus on further referencing. I will restate that I don't like the X's dialogue format because it's cumbersome and unnatural. We don't point to someone's dialogue, we point to a specific statement they make or a particular conversation. The accepted convention throughout gaming wikis is also the format I proposed. Tagaziel (talk) 10:19, 15 March 2014 (UTC)
Should the RTB template be a single column? I think that would make the references section look less crowded if it had less columns.--Ant2242 (talk) 13:20, 19 March 2014 (UTC)

I believe the original

[XYZ's dialogue: "Bla bla bla?" (The Player character)
"Blah blah blah."]

flows better. I don't find it confusing or complicated in the least.--Ant2242 (talk) 15:59, 19 March 2014 (UTC)

Which is which?

[[Scribe (Fallout)|Scribe]]: ''"{112}{}{Did you know the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction?}"''<br/> ''"{112}{}{Did you know that the sun is actually a big nuclear reaction? Similar to what ended the old world, except it's fission, no fusion.}"''<br/>([[GENSCRIB.MSG]], [[SCRIBEB.MSG]])

Votes[edit source]

Poll.png
Poll finished on March 21, 2014.
A consensus must be reached by voting before any action is taken.

Ant2242's proposed format[edit source]

Tagaziel's proposed format[edit source]