Factorio:Wiki Howto

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This page is used for contributors on this wiki. This page also contains some guidance for potential contributors.

Get an account

Just follow the instructions for registering. It takes normally one or two days to be added, because every user is added by hand to avoid spam. If after a week your account is not accepted, please email Wube's support.

If you need more rights to the wiki (deletion, moving...) you need to ask the developers directly, or ask in the forum board. Additionally, you may also ask an admin, if one is active at the time. Note that higher permissions are very rarely given out.

Understanding the wiki

This Wiki is hosted by Wube, a development company that develops Factorio. This Wiki is run by the community, with small influence from the developers.

Official rules

Below are the community guidelines for the Official Factorio Wiki. Infringing upon any of these rules will result in either a warning or a temporary/permanent ban, depending on the circumstances. These rules are not final, and are subject to change. Additionally, all admins hold the right to enforce as they see fit, even if the rule they enforce is not specifically enumerated here.

Language

  • The default language is American English, however English pages may also use European English. All pages must have an English version, and should be translated English -> Other. Use of country-specific slang must be avoided, except for localization reasons.
  • Any other language has no right to obtain a page name which collides with English.
  • No other language has the right to use a page name which means the same or something different in another language.
  • Language pages when translated should use the English name with the language code appended to the end of the name. For example, "Transport belt" when translated to German should be named "Transport belt/de".

Typo control

  • Please use the "Show preview" button to view your changes before saving them, to allow yourself to catch incorrect links and typos, and improper formatting. While creating multiple edits to the same page is allowed, it creates clutter on the recent changes screen.
  • Please correct all typos found, even if changing the sentence layout is necessary. Comprehension is important.
  • Run a spell check of the article to catch spelling errors.

Conduct

  • Be respectful to all editors, and readers. All forms of hate are not tolerated, and will result in a warning and ban.
  • All forms of vandalism and spam are not tolerated, and violators will be banned without question.
  • Do not edit-war. If a user overwrites your change and you disagree, do not edit the page back and forth, discuss it on the talk page of the page in question. In instances of edit warring, the oldest version is preferred until a decision is reached.
  • This ties into the above rule, but assume good faith. If a wiki editor makes a mistake due to human error, the fact that they are new to the community, or any other honest reason, fellow wiki community members must assume good faith. Rather than insulting, berating, or lashing out at the editor, community members should approach situations like these with a helpful and understanding attitude.
  • Wiki talk pages are for discussion of their respective page only. Please keep all discussion of in-game mechanics to the forums or subreddit, the links to which are in the sidebar. An article's talk page is intended for discussion or questions regarding the article's content. It is not a forum for casual discussion. Game suggestions, personal stories, shout-outs, etc. will be removed.
  • Similarly, self/other promotional content is forbidden unless it is for specific examples and educational purposes. Edits made that simply show off or enumerate user creations will be removed.
  • When making comments or asking questions on a talk page, be sure to sign the end with four tildes (~~~~)
  • Always remain civil during discussions.
  • While the Wiki can be easily reverted in the event of a mistake, please try to avoid creating work for others.
  • Registered users are expected to use a single account for all editing under most circumstances. The use of more than one account by a single individual is known as "sockpuppeting", and is a very high offense. A second account can be used in certain rare circumstances by longtime established, trusted users. Some valid reasons to use a second account may include those below. In those cases, it must be made absolutely clear that the accounts are operated by the same individual.
    • Technical testing
    • Bot (automated) accounts
    • Administrators who want to use non-admin accounts in less secure editing situations.
  • Refrain from using profanity unless it is used within a direct quotation. Preferably, censor the curse with stars.

Page layout guidelines and creation of new pages

  • Typically, a page will start with a short intro, then the content of the page, a history section, and a "see also" section. Please follow this when creating content pages. Categories should be used sparingly.
  • Please use sane formatting, and do not Capitalize Words Like This, or L I K E T H I S.
  • Do not overuse bold, italics, or colorful text. This detracts from the effect of said text when it is actually necessary.
  • If possible, clean white-space from the ends of lines/pages. Many editors can do this for you. Emacs, Notepad++, Sublime Text, and Vim are recommended.
  • Avoid creating unnecessary pages. If the info you are trying to add is related to an entity in-game, please place the info on that entity's page, and so on and so forth.
  • The Wiki follows the stable branch of the game. Changes concerning the experimental branch should only be put into place late in the development cycle of the branch, right before it is pushed to stable. Major changes in the experimental branch that are unlikely to change significantly are permitted, however it should be noted on the page in question that the feature is not part of stable yet.
  • Upcoming features should be referenced with a link to a comment or image posted by a member of Factorio's development staff.
  • Edit in an “encyclopedia” style, avoiding use of the first person or any personal bias. Avoid words like I, me, etc.
  • Do not create circular links, I.e. do not link a page to itself.
  • If making a comment to other editors is necessary, place the comment in comment delimiters, <!-- Comment --> so it cannot be seen by users.
  • Work in progress pages must be created in the author's userspace, and preferably an admin should be asked before merging into the greater Wiki.

The History section

  • This Wiki uses a history section on all content pages to track when entities/items are changed in the game. To do this, the Wiki uses the history template, which provided automatic formatting and version linking.
  • Bugs and bug fixes must not be placed in the update history section of a page, except for very significant instances. Instead, please document bugs in the bug sections of the official forums. However, bug fixes may be documented on Version history pages.
  • While a history section is not required for information pages such as Railway, all content pages concerning entities or mechanics of the game should have a history, taken from the changelog file provided with a standard Factorio install. The {{history}} template will automatically link to the relevant page in Version history.
  • Trivia and general facts are allowed, as long as it does not contain personal opinion and is not conjecture.

Media

  • When possible, avoid putting important text in images, as it is not search-able, and makes finding that info harder.
  • When uploading an image, please use a descriptive, unique name, and fill out the description box. Images given a non-descriptive name will be renamed.
  • When uploading an updated version of an image, use the "upload a new version of this image" link found on the old file's page. This ensures that all old instances are updated automatically.
  • Please mark any duplicated files for deletion with the {{delete}} template. If approved, an admin will delete them. Requests for pages in the requesting user's namespace are always granted.
  • If uploading images that are not of Factorio, please ensure you hold rights to upload the image. We don't want to get DMCA requests.
  • Please ensure that the image you are uploading is of good quality. Use the PNG filetype when possible.
  • See the section below for more info on uploading images.

Templates

  • Templates are to be used for formatting/common text on many pages. Do not create templates for only a few pages, except for special circumstances.
  • Templates should include {{documentation}} inside of noinclude tags, and should have a /doc sub-page to describe the use of the template.
  • Avoid making many sequential edits to a commonly used template. This creates strain on Wube's servers to update across all the pages. Preform edits to those templates with a single edit only. If you need to edit a protected template, please contact an admin, as these templates are especially heavily used.
  • Templates should be light, contain little content, and have descriptive names.
  • Templates must be created within the Template namespace. Please read up on this if you don't know what this means.

Contributing to the wiki

This wiki is the work of a team. The goal is for people to add information or bring it into better context, do videos, or design the layout of the pages, with the end goal to provide an easy place for beginners to Factorio to gain information.

The team communicates through the talk-pages ("Discussion" tab at the top) or through the forum. It's very important to check recent changes ("View History" tab at the top of the page). History will show you all the changes people have made to the page. Additionally, checking "Recent Changes" on the sidebar is also recommended.

(BTW: You can change the shown results in preferences!)

There are different jobs you can do. This list goes from simple to complex.

Corrector

Read through the pages (of your language) and correct mistakes or bad language usage. If it sounds ugly then change it. If you're new to wikis it might be difficult at first, but keep at it and you'll learn to do more. :)

Translator

Take an English page, copy the content into a sub-page (see below for an explanation) and translate it to your language. Please only translate if you speak the language very fluently or natively.

News-maker

There is also the News-page. Just add new links as new interesting information comes out. The rest is explained in the page as comments. Don't add stuff that isn't news. Before you add any, ask yourself: If I was looking at this from the future, would it still be relevant? Most of the time, blog posts from the Factorio team are denoted on the news page.

Designer

This is about the look and feel of this wiki.

Deep knowledge of Mediawiki's template system is not really needed, but will help. For the beginning just try to understand how the current templates work. Make your own test-page in your user-space and try to program around. It can be really fun because this task is more or less like programming. If you need assistance, be sure to check the "help" link on the sidebar of the Wiki, as it can give lots of information about the markup of the Mediawiki language.

Look here for some help: http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Help:Contents

Architect

The wiki is created in an agile process: writing, reading, testing. :) If you find out that this process is somehow inefficient, for example the changes are in the wrong place, then you need to change the wiki in general.

So, the job of an architect is to bring the existing pages into the right context by adding some new pages and/or renaming existing pages, and then changing the links to the pages. And sometimes old stuff must be deleted. Please do not make large changes without consulting an admin.


Other

So, if you have an idea:

  • Don't be afraid: There is nothing which you can really break, the wiki has a version history.
  • If you are still afraid: You can use the a test page in your home-space. That's the page beginning with "User:<your user name>". You can add a sub-page like "User:<your user name>/MyTests". Ask others what they think about it. Communicate!
  • Begin with slight changes. The others will watch (the "Recent changes") and help you out. If after a week or two is no response/follow up change, your change was good. Keep going, make bigger changes.

Basic

  • Read the wiki pages. It is important to learn by example.
    • If you don't like something, change it.
    • If you find typos, change it.
    • If you find something is described wrong, change it.
    • If someone disagrees about it, try to work it out on the talk pages or on the forums.

Advanced

  • Add missing information in the right places.
In most cases this is easy, but sometimes can be really difficult. Ask for help if you're unsure.
  • If you find that a topic belongs to two pages, then don't copy the information into the two pages, but create a new page and link them.
  • Use the correct choice of words.
Factorio has a set of words which have a fixed meaning. For example: An entity can be mined, an item can be picked up. Getting entity and item mixed up means something different! Ask the users if you are unsure which is which.
  • A picture says more than a thousand words.
Use pictures if possible. In some cases use GIFs! See below.
  • You can also go to the Wiki To-do List and see if there is a job you like.


So what do I need to do now?

"Inserters" becomes "Inserters/fr" for France, "Inserters/ru" for Russian etc.
  • If you are working on a page which has a translated page name then rename (Move) it! Search the original page name, add the language-code (see above), and move it to the new page name. A redirect is automatically left for the old page name!

(More to explain, language macro, see main-page at top right)

Pictures

Picture formats

  • (100 - 200) x (100-300) px
For flowing with the text, pictures which explain the text, the browser can embed this into it's own rendering. You can put them left or right, the text should flow around.
  • (400 - 600) x (100 - 600) px
Something like a banner. A big picture which stays alone in its line. You may put simply a ":" in front of it to indent the picture and keep it away from flowing text.
  • 300 x 300 px
This is especially good for gif animations. Gif animations cannot be reduced in size, because Mediawiki re-renders the picture and the result is the first frame of the gif!
  • The biggest format for flowing text should be: 600x600px

To re-size an image when it's put onto a page, simply provide the size as an argument to the file:

[[File:example.png|200x200px]]

Making pictures out of the game

Do's:

  • Take pictures at day! Use night or dawn only if you need to explain something that only works at night (for example, the lights).
  • Turn off clouds! The shadows in GIF-animations are not useful.
  • Steam/smoke is also not that useful.
  • Use god mode! [1]. You can move anywhere on the map and your character won't be in the picture.
  • You can slowdown the game to find the right moment for the picture. Slowdown is also useful if you use Gifcam, which makes Screenshots in 30 frames/sec only.
  • You can also use the peaceful mode to be not disturbed by the natives.
  • You can stop the game in the right moment using SHIFT-SPACE key. That also blends the grid in.
  • Learn how to use the Debug mode to add relevant information into the picture.
  • Go into the highest zoom level you possibly can without missing any vital information.
  • A good in-game picture should be rebuilt so that only the relevant entities/items are shown. Anything in the photo other than what you're trying to show/explain is unnecessary.

Dont's:

  • Don't take pictures of clutter! The only stuff in the photo should be the stuff you're trying to show. The exception to clutter: If you're showing what a fully finished factory or setup might look like.
  • Don't just take a screenshot. Try to remove all unneeded information from the picture.
  • Try to make a picture without the character, except if to show something; then face the character toward it.

See http://www.factorioforums.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=2472 for more.

Taking Screenshots, animations and videos

Taking Screenshots

Optimizing the picture before upload

  • Cut as much as possible/nice.
  • Resolution should not normally be higher than 600x600 px. Use multiple photos or ask a trusted wiki user if you need a much larger photo.
  • Do not add text to the photos Write any needed text outside the photo on the wiki. You cannot search text that is in a photo and users might not find what they are looking for.
  • Sharpen the pictures. For the wiki it looks a lot better to sharpen the pictures once or twice.