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Posted by atomic_dumpling (2460 posts) 10 months, 6 days ago

Poll: Should GB really maintain a big wiki right now? (324 votes)

No. I don't see the need and/or it has technical issues 5%
Yes. It is vital to Giant Bomb and I love it 66%
Maybe? I'd prefer they keep it, but seeing how broken the site is … 12%
*fartnoise* 17%

I just read that people can't edit the SEGA wiki entry. One of my own larger wiki entries has fudged up images since the relaunch. I don't need to tell you kaput parts of the main website are.

So, here comes a radical suggestion: Get rid of the wiki. Significantly reduce its size to a hundred or so key entries, tug a snapshot away for later and fix the broken-ass main website first. This injured horse ought to be shot. They did it with Quests, so why not with the wiki as well?

I just wonder if it is really worth having a vast database around when the technical framework is as flimsy as it seems. It sure was awesome in the old days, but uses up a lot of resources and manpower in these uncertain CBSi times. Besides, today it feels more like an image dump than a wiki.

There is also the little detail that the staff almost exclusively refers to wikipedia anyway when looking up video game stuff (bombcast, lifeshows).

So, keep the wiki?

#1 Edited by Strife777 (1503 posts) -

I think Jeff would strongly disagree.

I do.

#2 Posted by TheHT (10915 posts) -

What am I even reading.

#3 Posted by Itwongo (1131 posts) -

Fartnoise at that suggestion

#4 Posted by familyphotoshoot (653 posts) -

Sometimes I forget the wiki even exists, to be completely honest.

I just don't find it useful. I come to Giant Bomb almost exclusively for video and audio content.

#5 Posted by BisonHero (6220 posts) -

I agree that the wiki never quite gets the attention it needs, in terms of having no dedicated full-time overseer, and at best a few moderators that are passionate about it (Marino obviously comes to mind). Whether with Whiskey Media or CBSi, I can see why the wiki has never gotten crazy amounts of attention, as wiki articles probably never do the same amount of traffic that videos, reviews, and news stories do. While the GB wiki can be useful, I also find Wikipedia just as useful, or sometimes fan wikis dedicated to a particular game.

If anything, I think the wiki could be split off from Giant Bomb and made into a separate thing, because I really think its connection the Giant Bomb brand/idea is tenuous at best. The personality-driven nature of Giant Bomb's game coverage vastly overshadows the wiki.

#6 Posted by Seedofpower (3925 posts) -

What we are saying is that Giant bomb needs to publish a proper mission statement, as to explain why it has a wiki in the first place?

I like the wiki, I like the idea of having something to refer back to when talking to someone on the forum. As for the not being able to edit pages, the engineering team is coming back soon, they'll fix it.

#7 Posted by benpicko (2001 posts) -

Sometimes I forget the wiki even exists, to be completely honest.

I just don't find it useful. I come to Giant Bomb almost exclusively for video and audio content.

#8 Edited by BabyChooChoo (4301 posts) -

I use it fairly regularly and still find it useful. Only problem I encountered in the past few months was when I was looking up some fighting game, that I can't remember at the moment, and it had a bunch of really fucking weird character entries. Characters I know for a fact were never in that game. Assuming it hasn't been corrected, I should go try and remember what it was because either the wiki really is fucked up or someone decided to be asshole.

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#9 Posted by Gamer_152 (14054 posts) -

@bisonhero said:

I agree that the wiki never quite gets the attention it needs, in terms of having no dedicated full-time overseer, and at best a few moderators that are passionate about it (Marino obviously comes to mind).

If I can address this, we only have a few wiki moderators on the site, but I still believe that the handful of people that work on the wiki entirely cover what we need. The issues the mod team has with the wiki are almost entirely technical, not to do with a lack of manpower. I agree that it doesn't get everything it needs though. We'd need way more community volunteers if we wanted to fill every nook and cranny of that wiki, and there are major technical faults with it. That being said, I think it's an important part of the site, and that the community have built something that is worth hanging on to. We'll be losing a big part of the great work the userbase has put into the site if we just wipe the wiki.

To more directly address the opening post here, I think the poll options are rather biased. Two are basically no, and the fourth option is a non-answer that skews results. What the wiki needs if more input and a tune-up, not to just have the majority of its content culled.

Moderator Online
#10 Posted by BisonHero (6220 posts) -

@gamer_152: Fair points. Part of what I meant was also that there maybe isn't enough coordination among those community volunteers, in terms of a consistent style and tone on wiki articles. Is there a style guide? I remember Jeff talking about how it really needed one, but I haven't really kept up with the wiki.

#11 Edited by joshwent (2136 posts) -

I love the wiki. Giant Bomb is the most unique big gaming site around, and the wiki is a big part of that. Back in the prime of the whiskey days, there were constant pushes to fill out and improve things. Mods would set specific tasks to get certain pages filled out and grant extra points accordingly. Now, the main duders have sort-of lost focus about everything, but also the behind-the-scenes team is much smaller too, so those less important things have fallen behind.

Quests were also a great way to get users involved with the wiki. Searching through all those pages to find the right ones exposed people to what's there and what was lacking so folks were more apt to casually fill stuff out. Without that, it's understandable that other duders here are saying that sometimes they forget it exists.

Also OP, despite what you said, the staff does refer to their own wiki when looking up stuff about vidgames. I often hear jeff snarkilly remark, "Well, according to this site Giant Bomb dot com..."

Again, I love the wiki, and many others do too. It's also unrelated to forum problems, etc. that the site's been having, so even if parts of the wiki are messed up since the redesign, it's not taking resources away from anything else. Don't throw out something important to lots of us just because you don't like it.

#12 Posted by Abendlaender (2766 posts) -

I enjoy digging through the wiki from time to time, so I disagree.

#13 Edited by PandaBear (1310 posts) -

@benpicko said:

@familyphotoshoot said:

Sometimes I forget the wiki even exists, to be completely honest.

I just don't find it useful. I come to Giant Bomb almost exclusively for video and audio content.

Yeah, harsh but true. I pay my subscription just because I want to support the Bombcast and some of the video content. I'd prefer they ditched the Wiki (I mean I usually Google the game I want to know about and that usually leads me to Wikipedia) and wrote some more articles. I get so much of my news from places like Joystiq and IGN and like the longer features from Kill Screen. They need writers to write stories.

The Wiki is filled with conjecture and has a strong American bias... I've made changes in the past about PAL releases and had them either rolled in the US release or deleted entirely. For example - Sonic on the Master System is an entirely different game from the Mega Drive version, but the 16-bit and 8-bit versions were merged. They have one level in common. But hey, the Master System wasn't big in America so it doesn't matter. Sounds petty I know, but if you don't care about acurrately recording the history of video games what's the fucking point in this who section of the site?

tl;dr -- Ditch the Wiki, write more stories (and news), focus on the site's strengths (Bombcast, Quick Looks, other videos). Or keep it. Whatever haha

#14 Edited by atomic_dumpling (2460 posts) -
@joshwent said:

Don't throw out something important to lots of us just because you don't like it.

I didn't suggest deleting anything. I proposed to freeze, detach and backup the brunt of the database while keeping a few hundred selected pages live and editable. The full wiki could be rolled back as soon as the engineers stabilized the backend. Its not an on/off situation.

To be fair, I don't know how intertwined wiki and main site are and whether "slimming" the former would actually help the latter. Its just a naive thought.

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#15 Edited by alternate (2687 posts) -

I suspect CBS values it quite highly. I would not be surprised to see it integrated in the Gamespot redesign.

#16 Posted by BeachThunder (11711 posts) -

There are a number of pages like that - most very big pages. The issue is a handful of pages, not the majority; for the most part the wiki works (although it is a bit slow at times).

Anyway, I think the Wiki is a great feature of the site and I love contributing to it. Although, it would be nice if Jeff got around to creating that style-guide he was planning...

#17 Edited by Marokai (2811 posts) -

I think the Wiki is a great part of this site and I would hate to see it go away; it's just a shame that it seems to be this completely side thing that gets no attention or special care. In terms of importance and priority it just seems like it's on the rock bottom. It's one of the things that Jeff seems to value a great deal, though.

I used to browse the wiki a lot more when there was trivia and quest features on the site, since that would drop me down weird holes of trying to find answers and reading a bunch of cool stuff along the way. As the site has been plagued with technical issues, there's been no effort from the staff to raise awareness of the wiki for the last year or two, and quests have been removed, I've basically stopped paying any attention to it whatsoever.

But that doesn't mean they should ditch or restructure it. It's a great and important part of this site that isn't getting the love it deserves. I'd enjoy trying to get into editing it, but it's a bit intimidating.

The fact that certain issues with the wiki haven't been solved in months is downright ridiculous, though. It is increasingly just straight-up unacceptable how things about this site haven't been fixed.

@alternate said:

I would not be surprised to see it integrated in the Gamespot redesign.

Oh joy. I sincerely hope this doesn't happen; Giant Bomb in terms of website design is increasingly less distinct as it is.

#18 Posted by RonGalaxy (2892 posts) -

I know I never use that feature of the site, but a lot of members still do. The site really isnt all that terrible right now. The only issue I have, at the moment, is not getting notifications. Everything else has been fine

#19 Posted by FLStyle (4589 posts) -

Silly idea that would damage the site and piss me off.

#20 Posted by alwaysbebombing (1539 posts) -

Are you on crack?

#21 Posted by Ramone (2960 posts) -

I think the wiki is awesome and I really don't think that anyone at GB wants to kill off one of the site's most distinctive and unique features.

#22 Posted by BlackLagoon (1383 posts) -

@pandabear said:

The Wiki is filled with conjecture and has a strong American bias... I've made changes in the past about PAL releases and had them either rolled in the US release or deleted entirely. For example - Sonic on the Master System is an entirely different game from the Mega Drive version, but the 16-bit and 8-bit versions were merged. They have one level in common. But hey, the Master System wasn't big in America so it doesn't matter.

I don't think that has to do with American bias. Rather it was the old policy of avoiding titles with the same name as much as possible, because it was hard to differentiate between them with the search on the old site. I don't think the moderators formally lifted that policy, but it should be less of an issue now that the search shows release platforms too.

#23 Posted by Fattony12000 (7081 posts) -

Make a wiki about the wiki.

#24 Posted by audioBusting (1477 posts) -

The forums are more broken than the wiki, so...

Besides, that sounds like a lot more work than just leaving it alone until the engineers have more time. We can fix most of the broken formatting that resulted from the relaunch ourselves (it is a wiki, after all). I'd guess that the wiki is scalable enough to not take that much manpower to maintain as it is now, right?

#25 Posted by Venatio (4482 posts) -

This is crazy talk, the Wikis need improvement but getting rid of it? No way

#26 Posted by Sammo21 (3213 posts) -

Considering Giant Bomb was created FOR the wiki, I seriously doubt you will ever see that happen. As @audiobusting pointed out, the forums and postings are more broken than anything in the wiki. With people like Alexis being employees of CBS now and not Giant Bomb they have to be pulled off to wherever they are told. That sucks, and I have a feeling that might have been a small reason Dave left, but hopefully it gets worked out. I am still leery about Giant Bomb being part of CBS. My yearly membership is set to expire here in a few days (in time with the anniversary) and I am really debating about whether to reup or not. I love the exclusive content but we are getting a lot less than we used to so...I don't know.

#27 Posted by Dagbiker (6939 posts) -

A lot of what Alexis has been doing has been implementing the new technologies, such as the search, menu bar and so fourth into our gamefaqs, and now our rivalvideogamesite. When he is done I wouldn't be surprised if they merged the data bases. And so you get content from both sites.

But first fix these forums. PLEASE.

#28 Edited by chiablo (907 posts) -

I'm just sad that it hasn't evolved at all. Sites like wikia are far more useful than anything in GB's wiki since it helps people play the game. Giant Bomb's wiki is just a description of the game, not much else.

It was a lot of fun when there were quests, so you could explore and have a reason to stumble around there. But now, there's no reason for it.

#29 Posted by Milkman (16540 posts) -

Never gonna happen.

#30 Posted by ShockD (2393 posts) -

I joined GB for the wiki, didn't even use the forums so much. So if they take the wiki they will take it's charm and the site will be no different than any other.

#31 Posted by ZeForgotten (10397 posts) -

Leave the Wiki up, no matter how busted it is. Take that away even for a moment and I won't know the difference between Kotaku and Giant Bomb anymore.

#32 Posted by Hailinel (23941 posts) -

This is such a terrible suggestion. The wiki is a major part of the site's appeal for a lot of people.

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#33 Posted by iAmJohn (6109 posts) -

On the bright side, this thread is making me long for the days a year and a half ago where I was unemployed, doing nothing but playing GBA FPS games to write about them for the wiki, so maybe I'll pick that project back up.

#34 Edited by atomic_dumpling (2460 posts) -

Leave the Wiki up, no matter how busted it is. Take that away even for a moment and I won't know the difference between Kotaku and Giant Bomb anymore.

Giantbomb - wiki = Kotaku? That's harsh man.

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#35 Posted by ZeForgotten (10397 posts) -

@zeforgotten said:

Leave the Wiki up, no matter how busted it is. Take that away even for a moment and I won't know the difference between Kotaku and Giant Bomb anymore.

Giantbomb - wiki = Kotaku? That's harsh man.

I know, I don't really mean it, I just had to go to extremes to get the crazy thought out of your head :P

#36 Edited by Duder_Me (307 posts) -

I miss the old site.

#37 Edited by Snail (8584 posts) -

The wiki should stay don't be crazy like that.

I do agree that it was waaaayy too broken to be presented as anything more than a beta version last time I used it. It gave me so many frustrating moments.

And I also agree that it sucks how the staff always refer to their own website's wiki as an unreliable source. Brad often says "Yeaaahhh... But that's the Giant Bomb wiki" or something along those lines, when Jeff or someone looks up stuff on GB.

Like, yeah, it can be unreliable: the frustrating part is that you acknowledge it and don't do any visible efforts to improve it. Even if stuff is going on behind-the-scenes (which I trust it is), it just fucking blows to hear the staff not give an eff about the wiki. We need stricter guidelines that enforce official, more homogenous templates to different kinds of wiki pages, and a more robust technical background. The wiki worked better *before* the site update.

Here's hoping they fix it soon. Have they even rolled out the updates to the task system? I've been out of touch with that part of the website for a while now (wonder why).

#38 Posted by CaLe (3913 posts) -

The wiki is cool... but I never use it. I wouldn't miss it personally, but I think some people would. I don't think its presence harms other parts of the site, either, so removing it wouldn't accomplish anything.

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#39 Edited by medacris (645 posts) -

Agreeing that yes, the site is broken, but most websites I've visited for any length more than a year have been broken at least once.

I enjoy the wiki. It's helpful for a lot of games and consoles that I didn't even know existed, and I think it's better than a general, extremely broad "wiki for all things" (like Wikipedia) or a "wiki for very specific things, like a certain fandom or one specific game" (which can be too narrow, or confusing when you don't know what you're looking for). I do think some articles haven't been updated as recently as they should, though.

#40 Edited by GorillaMoPena (1945 posts) -
#41 Edited by LordAndrew (14424 posts) -

This is a terrible idea. The wiki is great. It's totally buggy, but so are the forums and nobody dares suggest that we get rid of them. Both would drive away users and they may never come back.

#42 Posted by super2j (1654 posts) -

there are a number of sites out there that use the GB sites database for stuff and i think some of us may feel the impact on other sites/services that we do not realize are using it.

#43 Posted by DeeGee (2116 posts) -

@super2j: Twitch, for example, uses the Giant Bomb database.

Twitch is kind of a big deal.

#44 Posted by Demoskinos (14578 posts) -

Fuuuuuuck that noise. Also, the engineers have been working on Comic Vine Alexis has said that they will soon be done and be back on full time duty maintaining Giantbomb and fixing shit. Once they iron out the forums and other issues then I'm sure they might take a stab at something like fixing the wiki. Removing the wiki would be entirely against what Giantbomb is at the core. It is what makes Giantbomb Giantbomb.

#45 Edited by Brendan (7696 posts) -

Wiki's fine I guess, but its been outclassed by Wikia sites for pretty much any game in terms of content, useability and usefulness. So whatever.

#46 Edited by joshwent (2136 posts) -

@super2j said:

there are a number of sites out there that use the GB sites database for stuff and i think some of us may feel the impact on other sites/services that we do not realize are using it.

Fantastic point! I forget what stream it was, but they confirmed that TWITCH's categorizing system for streams is based on the Giant Bomb API. Basically, without the wiki, the internet would just stop working.

#47 Posted by 49th (2694 posts) -

internets are hard cancel the website!

#48 Posted by StriderNo9 (1082 posts) -

I love it to the point that if GB didnt have it I'd start a site and do it myself lol.

#49 Posted by Mento (2443 posts) -

As others have said, the wiki just needs a tune-up from the engineers and a style guide from Jeff (with help from Marino and the other wiki mods) so we can avoid some recurring problems. It's handy to have around as its super convenient for blogs and lists, since you can just link to any game you want to talk about. For such an expansive resource with so many practical applications, it's criminally underused. (That goes for APIs and sites like Twitch that use the database too.)

As for the relative omniscence of Wikipedia over our own humble wiki, I can at least confirm that we are the best source of Famicom Disk System information on the web. It's not a lot, but it is something.

Moderator
#50 Posted by deskp (444 posts) -

I didnt read all the replies here so this might have beens ai.d already.

The new GAMESPOT.com's game pages will Link to giant bombs wiki, So it's about to gain a little more relevancy, so I'm sure they will fix it up at some point.