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Halo Nation:Manual of Style

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For the layout style guide, see Halo Nation:Layout Guide.

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This page is official Halo Nation policy.

This Manual of Style is a guide applicable to all Halo Nation articles. It reflects the wiki's standards, and is intended to help editors to produce articles with language, layout, and formatting that are consistent, clear, and precise.

General principles

Internal consistency

An overriding principle is that style and formatting choices should be consistent within a Halo Nation article, though not necessarily throughout Halo Nation as a whole. Consistency within an article promotes clarity and cohesion.

Stability of articles

The Administration team has ruled that editors should not change an article from one guideline-defined style to another without a substantial reason unrelated to mere choice of style, and that revert-warring over optional styles is unacceptable. Where there is disagreement over which style to use in an article, refer to an Administrator.

Follow the sources

Main article: Help:References

Many points of usage, such as the treatment of proper names, can be decided by observing the style adopted by high-quality sources. Unless there is a clear reason to do otherwise, follow the usage of reliable English-language secondary sources on the subject. If the sources can be shown to be unrepresentative of current English usage, follow current English usage instead—and consult more sources.

Clarity

Writing should be clear and concise. Plain English works best: avoid jargon, and vague or unnecessarily complex wording.

Verb tense

Use past tense when referring to specific events that have already run their course in the media's plot. Examples below:

Wrong

When Alpha Halo is destroyed, it emits a signal that places all other Forerunner installations in standby mode, including the Sentinels guarding the Shield World located within the artificial world of Onyx. On October 31, 2552, the first of these Sentinels to awaken suddenly begin attacking UNSC forces on or near Onyx. Coincidentally, Gamma Company is participating in the Top Honors exercise at the time.

Right

When Alpha Halo was destroyed, it emitted a signal that placed all other Forerunner installations in standby mode, including the Sentinels guarding the Shield World located within the artificial world of Onyx. On October 31, 2552, the first of these Sentinels to awaken suddenly began attacking UNSC forces on or near Onyx. Coincidentally, Gamma Company was participating in the Top Honors exercise at the time.


Plot summaries are rare exceptions to this, as they use present tense to maintain the narrative. Chapter summaries summarize a chapter's events in a "this is what happens in this chapter" fashion, as opposed to a "this is what happened in that chapter" fashion. Examples below
Wrong

The "Pillar of Autumn" is the first level in the campaign mode of Halo: Combat Evolved and in the Halo Trilogy. Master Chief Petty Officer SPARTAN John-117 was revived from his cryo-sleep and made his way to the bridge of the titular ship to be debriefed by Captain Jacob Keyes about their current situation. After the brief meeting, John-117, with his AI companion Cortana, made his way off the ship via a Bumblebee escape pod.

Right

The "Pillar of Autumn" is the first level in the campaign mode of Halo: Combat Evolved and in the Halo Trilogy. Master Chief Petty Officer SPARTAN John-117 is revived from his cryo-sleep and makes his way to the bridge of the titular ship to be debriefed by Captain Jacob Keyes about their current situation. After the brief meeting, John-117, with his AI companion Cortana, makes his way off the ship via a Bumblebee escape pod.


Use present tense when referring to gameplay elements, characters, weapons, enemies, and the like. Examples below
Wrong

The M6D PDWS was a handgun seen in Halo Universe. It was used by various characters and was the first ranged weapon the player encountered.

Right

The M6D PDWS is a handgun seen in the Halo Universe. It is used by various characters and is the first ranged weapon the player encounters.

DO NOT include phrases like "his ultimate fate is unknown" or "what happened to the ship after that is a mystery."

Article size rule

When deciding as to whether an article should be divided, please refer to the following table.

Readable prose size What to do
> 100 KB Almost certainly should be divided
> 60 KB Probably should be divided (although the scope of a topic can sometimes justify the added reading time)
≥ 40 KB May need to be divided (likelihood goes up with size)
< 40 KB Length alone does not justify division
< 1 KB If an article or list has remained this size for over a couple of months, consider combining it with a related page. Alternatively, why not fix it by adding more info? See Wikipedia:Stub.

Editing standards

General standards

  1. Please categorize articles and insert navigational templates appropriately.
  2. Please do not insert a heading, such as ==Summary==, if there is only a single heading within the article. Just don't put a heading until you feel the need to insert two, and then you may create two.
  3. Whenever inserting pictures in "thumb" format, such as [[File:Random.jpg|thumb|left]], be sure to add a caption like [[File:Random.jpg|thumb|left|Caption goes here.]].
  4. Refer to the Halo universe from a third-person perspective.
  5. List all references at the end articles. It should not be: SPARTAN-117 said, and I quote this from Halo 2, "I need a weapon." Instead, use the reference tag if necessary, or else, write: '''[[Halo 2]]''', campaign level ''[[Cairo Station (Level)|Cairo Station]]'' ("''I need a weapon''")
  6. Any game, media (i.e. Novels) and level title must be written in italics.
  7. Refrain from using slashes whenever possible. Instead, work the word "or" into the sentence, or figure out some other way of stating it.

Avoid making multiple edits in an article

Halo Nation is one of few wikis with an achievement feature. Whenever one contributes to the wiki at a certain amount, one is rewarded of achievements. Though it sounds fun, excessive amount of edits in an article can lead to a block. As such, editors are reminded to edit an article to a maximum of three.

A simple way of avoiding this problem is to mark your contributions as "Minor Edit", or practice using the Preview button which allows you to review the contributions you made before saving them.

Use the "Minor Edit" button

As a corollary to the above, if you are making a minor edit (e.g. fixing a spelling error or tweaking formatting), check the "This is a minor edit" button below the Summary box before saving the page. Again, this will make things easier for the rest of us.

Use the Preview Button

The preview button is right next to the save edit button, and is there for a reason. It's your own personal spell checker, link checker, whatever-else checker. Use it. Users that purposefully do not preview edits as to inflate their edit count are not well regarded amongst users, and you may find yourself in trouble with an administrator.

Do not link to the current page

In other words, a page should not link to itself. If it is attempted, the link will simply turn into bold text.

Link once

A given page should only contain one link to any other page. If a page links to Captain Jacob Keyes in one place, then that should be the only link to Captain Jacob Keyes on that page. Typically this link should be the first instance of the term in the article.

Do not use conversational style

This is an information site. It should read like Wikipedia, not like your diary.

  • Check your spelling and grammar. Do not use internet slang (ex. "How r u?" or "c u 2nite"). If you are not 100% sure about the way a word is spelled, type it into Google or Dictionary.com. If you know that you are not the strongest speller, compose your edits in a word processor like Microsoft Word or use an Internet browser like Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome, which has spell-checking built in.
  • Do not "reply" to content others have posted. If you think a particular point warrants discussion, post on the article's Discussion page. If you are 100% sure that something should be changed and do not think a discussion is necessary, just change it. Dialogue goes only on articles' Discussion pages or the forum.
  • Never abbreviate the names of characters, places, or anything. Wherever possible, use the full name of a character the first time they are mentioned. After the first mention, you may refer to "Master Chief" as "John" or "Captain Jacob Keyes" as "Keyes" and so forth.

Stubs

If you do not know enough information on a topic, or you know there's more, add a stub to it. To do so, try this:

  • {{stub}}

And people will know that it's a stub by looking at the stub category. Generally the {{stub}} template is put at the bottom of the page.

Do not sign your edits

All contributions are appreciated, but if every user left their mark on every contribution they made, the Wiki would be nothing but signatures. If you have made an edit that you are particularly proud of (such as a transcript or screenshot), the correct place to take credit is on your own user page. If you do not have a user account, we respect your anonymity, but your edits will remain anonymous, too.

Do sign your talk posts

If you make a post on a discussion page, please sign it. If you have a user account, this is as easy as typing ~~~~ at the end of your post. If you do not have a user account, just sign it with your name or nickname so everybody can tell who is who when reading long conversations. Even better, create an account anyway and use the signature method described. There really is no reason not to if you are going to stick around.

Using images/files

  • Add only canon image, not screenshots from customized/tweaked canon games or mods.
  • Avoid uploading pictures you don't have a purpose for, unless they can add to a subject gallery. Before uploading, read Help:Images for more information on image use.

External links

External links are links that point to sites other than the Wiki. The links should be in the form of a bullet list. External links typically look like this:

*[http://www.bungie.net/filename.html '''The Website''': ''Title of the article'']

Headers/Headings

Never make a header title as links. Instead, use the Main Redirect Template and add it under the header. Additionally, avoid adding the Ref Tag to the header.

See also

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