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Andytizer

Proposal: Move skip intro videos further down

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I'd like for skip intro videos section (a very valuable section) to be move out of Essential improvements - it's not essential and is too high up on the page. It gets bogged down especially when there are 3 or more ways to skip the intro videos e.g. command line, shortcut target, deleting videos, replacing videos etc.

I am thinking to move it to ==Other information== below API - in a consistent place with plenty of room to grow.

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I don't really have a hard opinion, but last time I checked this was the thing most people were more happily commenting about.

Also, arguably, for many many games it's the only actual fix we offer.

If any I have always been a supporter of "not having dozens of useless alternatives".

For example, a command line parameter is definitively better than deleting videos, if not any at least for steam cache verification purposes. Then I would say you get in order ini editing, file deleting and file replacing (and of course then you have outliers like GTA:SA, but I digress).

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Pretty much what Mirh said. When I was a wee bit newbie just starting out with PCGW editing I also brought it up and was subsequently outvoted.

But nowadays I would actually argue to leave it alone over moving it.

  • It is often mentioned as one of the key enjoyments of PCGW, meaning it should be featured more prominently than stuffed away in a rarely seen section.
  • As Mirh mentioned it is also for many games the one fix/improvement we provided.
  • And another, for me critical, reason to retain it as is is that it also serves a triple-purpose in basically: provides a basic and understandable introduction to the sort of stuff we might cover for new visitors; are one of the easiest ways for users to follow and implement on their own; are also one of the easier ways for new contributors to “dip their toes” into the world of wiki editing.

All around, while the subject matter itself might not be very “essential,” the section itself very much is IMHO.

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Maybe the bigger problem is the word "ESSENTIAL" in the title. People put links to patches there, but is every patch really essential ? No it is not. People put links to various mods there, but even if the mods do improve something, it usually it is not essential. It is a too strong word.

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Discussions on forums/reddit/etc. invariably mention skipping intro videos as one of the great things about the wiki, so I'd be hesitant to demote it so significantly, especially now that the table of contents is collapsed by default--the average visitor might think there isn't a fix at all.

As @Antrad mentioned above, the best approach might be to change "essential" to something else for this. One solution would be to have "essential improvements" only for fixes that are absolutely crucial (e.g. the game won't work correctly without this fix) and then just below that have "recommended improvements" (or something) for fixes that are nice to have but not crucial to the experience (add widescreen support, skip intros, and anything else you probably want but don't need). This would separate things nicely without pushing popular fixes down the page, and a lot of pages already have the most crucial fixes first.

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“Essential” as a word is fine IMHO, and attempting to separate it into two is just going to cause more confusion.

  • For patches, only the latest patch is usually the one being included, and it is essential because updating a game to the latest version /is/ essential. It doesn’t matter what the patch itself includes, just that information on how to update an outdated copy is available. Our articles are also meant to reflect the latest patches alone, and so outdated fixes are removed from the article when a patch have fixed them. So to actually read the article properly, an updated copy is essential.
  • For mods, the inclusion of “non-essential” mods are already an issue and one that is solved by editors simply moving the sections to another more appropriate section. “Essential” here is a good adjective to use as it is clearer than something like “recommended”.

I don’t recommend splitting it up because “Recommended” is then going to validate the inclusion of nonsense mods at the top of the article that does not belong there. For improved widescreen support and such, see Video section. For other subjectively recommended mods, see Other informations, etc.

Adding a recommended section is just going to increase the data on top, not decrease it which seems to be the underlying intention with this proposal.

An acceptable workaround for skip intros specifically that I can imagine might be doable is to move the larger such sections that includes more than one alternative down to “Other information“ while retaining a link to said section in the “Essential improvements” section. This would solve huge sections while still allowing new users and regular users to easily identify whether such an option is available or not regardless of whether multiple alternatives are available or not.

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54 minutes ago, Aemony said:

An acceptable workaround for skip intros specifically that I can imagine might be doable is to move the larger such sections that includes more than one alternative down to “Other information“ while retaining a link to said section in the “Essential improvements” section. This would solve huge sections while still allowing new users and regular users to easily identify whether such an option is available or not regardless of whether multiple alternatives are available or not.

From time to time I've thought about the possibility of having some form of a quick visual overview of a handful of the most common features that would then link to those sections, perhaps something like how the old GOG.com browser extension worked (at least in terms of selection if not actual appearance):

image.png.a691663ccea1900bd95102106a297414.png

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17 hours ago, Antrad said:

Maybe the bigger problem is the word "ESSENTIAL" in the title. People put links to patches there, but is every patch really essential ? No it is not.

Yes it is.

If then morons put "look, we retextured fishes inside an aquarium", that's a whole different story.

See also my recent edit about the widescreen fix in GTA:SA, for a more nuanced example of what can be considered as such.

1 hour ago, Aemony said:

that I can imagine might be doable is to move the larger such sections that includes more than one alternative down to “Other information“ while retaining a link to said section in the “Essential improvements” section

I mean.. If we even offer multiple alternatives to begin with there must be a reason.

And I really struggle to see how you could have one that still justifies a mention, but at the same time have it just relegated on the bottom of the page.

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I am thinking we could easily make a dedicated space for 'skip intro videos', and at the same time we could track some new values to do with videos (or non-interactive sections) within games:

Skip intro videos - true/false/hackable

  • True = pressing 'Esc' can skip the logos
  • False = can't skip - note how many seconds of video logos involved
  • Hackable = familiar instructions

Cutscenes skippable - true/false/hackable

Cutscenes pausable - true/false/hackable

These two are particular bugbears of mine as when you are replaying a game, many cutscenes are overly long and unskippable. At the same time, some are so long that you want to pause without accidentally skipping them.

 

These could sit under a new H2 underneath Video, it could be called ==Videos skippable== or something like that.

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On 5/7/2020 at 2:45 PM, Mirh said:

And I really struggle to see how you could have one that still justifies a mention, but at the same time have it just relegated on the bottom of the page.

That was primarily to prevent the section from taking up huge space on top of the article while still allowing it to grow to whatever space is deemed necessary by editors to properly document the various alternative methods available.

 

15 hours ago, Andytizer said:

I am thinking we could easily make a dedicated space for 'skip intro videos', and at the same time we could track some new values to do with videos (or non-interactive sections) within games:

Skip intro videos - true/false/hackable

  • True = pressing 'Esc' can skip the logos
  • False = can't skip - note how many seconds of video logos involved
  • Hackable = familiar instructions

Cutscenes skippable - true/false/hackable

Cutscenes pausable - true/false/hackable

These two are particular bugbears of mine as when you are replaying a game, many cutscenes are overly long and unskippable. At the same time, some are so long that you want to pause without accidentally skipping them.

 

These could sit under a new H2 underneath Video, it could be called ==Videos skippable== or something like that.

I sorta fail to see the relevance of having an entirely new section dedicated to that right now. Does anyone actually choose what game to (re)play based on whether the cutscenes of the game are skippable or not? Right now the mention of that new sections and tracking the cutscenes sounds more like an attempt to validate moving the skip intro section away from the top of the article.

I don't personally see, at this time, any gain for PCGW or our visitors of attempting to track cutscene skippable/pausable of games.

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4 hours ago, Aemony said:

Right now the mention of that new sections and tracking the cutscenes sounds more like an attempt to validate moving the skip intro section away from the top of the article.

Yes that's true!

4 hours ago, Aemony said:

Does anyone actually choose what game to (re)play based on whether the cutscenes of the game are skippable or not?

People also don't choose what to play based on whether the intro videos can be skipped, but we can agree that the section is important to have. They are quality of life fixes and there are often hacks/mods/savegames to forcefully skip them - and this can be applied to other parts of the game.

There is also a wider application to skipping with other potential options:

  • Skip introduction - separate from the typical branded logos, this might be a really long cutscene at the beginning of the campaign.
  • Skip tutorial - when you are replaying a game or newgame+ you probably don't want to run the entire tutorial again. Sometimes tutorial and intro are combined, but people want to skip them anyway - see all the mods for Dragon Age: Origins, Fallout, Skyrim etc. In Bethesda games you can generally reset your character build as soon as you step out of the tutorial/intro level, so those save games are popular.

This is in addition to what I mentioned before:

  • Skip intro videos
  • Cutscenes skippable
  • Cutscenes pausable

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On 5/9/2020 at 7:24 PM, Andytizer said:

I am thinking we could easily make a dedicated space for 'skip intro videos', and at the same time we could track some new values to do with videos (or non-interactive sections) within games

I agree having fixes for stopping and skipping cutscenes is important, but aren't we inflating too much the amount of things we track? Like, what's the point of looking at a game starting from that information? We should have fixes.. but we aren't trying to build some knowledge engine.

And I don't really think tracking skip videos is worth a dime.

On 5/10/2020 at 10:47 AM, Aemony said:

That was primarily to prevent the section from taking up huge space on top of the article while still allowing it to grow to whatever space is deemed necessary by editors to properly document the various alternative methods available.

I understood that, but I'm failing to see in which situation the alternatives would be worth anything, if they don't deserve as much attention as the supposedly main one.

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When you open and close a game frequently within a 1-hour timespan, the ability to skip intro videos (even if only by a button press) becomes a much appreciated QoL improvement.

I have actually put skipping intro videos outside of essential improvements before, if doing so has significant drawbacks. For example, to skip the intro cutscene for Lego Marvel 1, you "just" need to delete the cutscene's folder. But to delete the cutscene's folder, you need to decompress the entire game, and you can't recompress it afterward.

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