A category is a navigational tool used to group similar pages together and structure the wiki, making it easier to explore and use. This guide helps to understand the use of categories in Kingdom Wiki, providing instructions on how to:
- keep the category tree neat and tidy
- edit category pages to preserve their primary navigational function.
This guide mainly focuses on the macro category World, which contains the articles about the in-game elements of the Kingdom series. For that reason, applying some of the concepts listed here onto other macro categories may happen to be inappropriate.
The category tree is the whole structure of all interlinked categories under the main root category. This structure is well represented as an upside down tree (see the diagram) that has its trunk (the main category) on the air, and grow branches (the subcategories) downwards; each branch having an amount of leaves (the pages/articles) on their extremities. Or yet—if only the roots are taken into consideration—the main category is the primary root from which all other ramifications (the subcategories) sprout; each growing down a number of root hairs (the pages). This is why the main/root category is also called the top-level category.
There is one main category that has the same name of the wiki, and contains the main page and the 4 macro categories. All other categories and pages should be directly or indirectly included in one of these macro categories.
A well structured category tree will allow categories to fulfill their purpose of helping readers to:
- find similar pages
- navigate through different groups of pages.
And a lot of the effort to create and maintain such a structure could be summarized in two types of actions: subdividing and merging categories.
Subdividing a big category
If the wiki had only one big category called "Kingdom games", and if all articles belonged to that same category, visiting that category page could be useful, as one would find a comprehensive list of all the 182 articles the wiki has about the games, but they'll spend a considerable time going through the list until they could find what they're looking for. This is why similar elements should be regrouped into subcategories, so that:
- the list of elements in a category page can be meaningful to the reader
- the entire list can be read in a couple of (or in a few) seconds.
The elements of a big category should be regrouped in a subcategory if:
- there are explicit similarities between the elements of the subgroup
- these similarities are strongly related to the name of the new category
- there is a good number of similar elements to compose the new group
- To avoid letting the "good number" entirely subjective, in Kingdom Wiki this means:
- 1 element doesn't make a "category"
- 2 elements only is bad
- 3 can be tolerated, if they're indeed very similar to each other and quite different from everything else
- 4–12 elements is a good number
- 13–20 can be acceptable, if all the elements clearly have the same set of characteristics
- 21+ is bad.
- the new ramification doesn't make the navigation too complex or confusing
- the new ramification makes sense on a reader's point of view
Merging tiny categories
When a category has been subdivided without meeting the conditions listed above, editors should consider merging its subcategories. The subtle differences between the subgroups could be mentioned in the parent category page.
It is possible for some pages (categories and articles) to be included in more than one category. It's sometimes useful and even necessary; and it's usualy never a problem in itself. However, editors should avoid tagging an article with categories that have a (direct or indirect) parent-child relationship. In those cases, the tag of the parent category should be removed, because belonging to the child category already implies that the page belongs to the parent category.
World │ ┌──────────┴──────────┐ Characters Structures │ │ ┌─────┴────┐ ┌────┴──────┐ Subjects Monsters Kingdom Greed structures structures
For example, an article called "Greed-citizen" should belong to the categories "Subjects" and "Monsters". But it should not be included in the category "Characters", because it's already implied by the child categories, that "Greed-citizen" is a character.
Another example: if an article is called "Portal" and also explains about the "Teleporter", it should belong to the categories "Greed structures" and "Kingdom structures". But it should not be included in the category "Structures", because it's already implied by the subcategories, that "Portal" is a structure.
Without that guideline, all pages could end up being included in the category "World", because all characters and all structures are part of the Kingdom world.
Categories with a parent-child relationship can be easily identified in a category diagram because they appear in the same vertical branch of the tree. For example: World—Characters—Subjects appear in the same vertical branch.
Mimicking the category tree
In order to help users to get used to the main structure of the category tree, this structure should be used to organize the links on:
Just like the category pages, these spaces are types of navigational tools with different formats. But once users become familiar with the main arrangement in one of these instances, they will easily find the desired links via any of the other spaces.
With that in mind, editors should do an effort to keep them similar or equivalent, at least on the level of the macro categories. That said, due to their different formats, it's obviously neither possible to recreate the entire category tree on them, nor would it be desirable.
All category pages already have auto-generated lists of their child pages (subcategories and articles) in alphabetical order. But for some readers, those plain lists with names of pages aren't enough for them to find the link they're looking for without spending some time guessing or clicking back and forth. With that in mind, categories could have some content in order better fulfill their navigational purpose. But that content shouldn't be extended to the point of turning them into content pages. To help editors to recognize these nuances, the category page content has been divided in three groups: expected, optional, and to be avoided.
- All categories are expected to have a concise summary explaining the types of pages and subcategories it should contain.
One single image on the top of the page (floating to the right) representing most of its child pages.
- List of the child pages
- Sometimes it's enough to simply reorder the list of child pages, or separate them in groups in a way that makes more sense for readers content-wise.
- A simple list with the child pages in alphabetical order and no short descriptions is unnecessary.
- Descriptions of the child pages
- Along with the list, descriptions could provide inexperienced users with a basic and generic idea of each page
- Descriptions should be short, and use only a couple of sentences; usually one is more than enough.
- Descriptions should not contain links.
- If descriptions are used, displaying the list in a table may improve its presentation.
Small images (max. 64 pixels tall) for each child page link. This can be used with or without the descriptions.
- Related links
If a page external to the category is related to most of the children or to the category page itself, a link to that page may be included (after the list, if the list is used) in:
- a generic "See also" section
(usually if there are more than one related links)
- an exclusive section
- if the link has a remarkable importance
- if the list of child pages is too long
- a generic "See also" section
Content to be avoided
More content than the listed above should be avoided by:
- Moving the content of these extra sections to
- a related page that could contain that information
- creating a category main page
Category main page
A category main page is an article that will gather all the content that could not fit in a category page of the same name without obfuscating its navigational purpose.
For example, if all the information on the article Mounts had been placed in the category page, this would make the category page lose its primary function of facilitating the navigation between its child pages. Other examples of category main pages are: Hermits, Mounts, Statues, Subjects, and Wildlife.
When categorizing the main page of a category, a blank (space) sortkey should be used to force the article to display at the top of the auto-generated list of the category page.
For example, on the article Mounts:
In order to know if the subject of an article is related to a certain game, the reader should look for a context banner on the top of the article reading "This is about [game name(s)]". If there is a banner like that, then the subject of that article is exclusive to the mentioned title(s). If there's not, the feature is present in all titles of the Kingdom series.
This system is used to distinguish games only, and not DLCs, settings or campaigns. If the subject of the article is exclusive to a specific context within the game, like a setting, that should be mentioned in the introduction of the article, preferably in the first paragraph.
The subcategories with game names are an extra tool for linsting all elements related to a Kingdom title. They are classified as hidden categories to avoid overloading the list of categories on the top and bottom of the articles. They're easily accessible on Category:Games.