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This is pretty much a follow up question to my previous one about my impression that we're not getting as many questions about new games as we used to.

The main reason I propose this, and also the main reason why I am concerned about the low question volume is that the very early phase after release is important to actually establish the site as a place where you get answers about a specific game. We're not like other SE sites, we essentially change our topic every few weeks and can't rely on older posts to establish our credentials.

I'll also have to clarify what I mean by "seeding" questions. There are very problematic forms of seeding, but what I'm thinking about is nothing else than simply asking questions that we encounter while playing the game. One huge difference is that I consider it useful to ask any question that seems like it would be useful to other people, no matter whether we can actually solve the issue ourselves. We're a site that is limited by the volume of questions, not by the capacity of the users answering them. We need more questions, and I'm convinced that we can deliver better answers in a more useful format often enough that duplicating existing knowledge is a negligible drawback.

I'll use Dragon Age:Inquisition as an example as it is the most recent AAA game I played, and one where I intentionally seeded questions about the game on the site. It is also a good example of my impression that we're not getting many questions about new games in the first days they're released. During the first few days around 3/4 of all the questions about DA:I I asked myself, there was hardly any activity aside from that.

A few more users turned up later, but our content for this specific game is a bit disappointing in my opinion. We simply don't have a critical mass of users playing this specific game yet to get excellent answers to most questions. We have something like three or four regulars posting in this tag, which can't be enough to cover the game sufficiently (especially for such a huge game).

The main purpose of seeding questions would be to get a set of common questions about the game on the site, and use those to attract more users interested specifically in this game. Unlike other SE sites we can't rely on our older content to attract those users, unless we have content about the new game already they won't find us if they search for answers to their questions. Getting more users than a handful of regulars involved is important to actually cover all the areas of the game and ensure that we get some good answers.

Should we encourage the regular users of this site to ask questions about new games they're playing? Even if those questions could be solved by googling for them?

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    Yes, provisionally. There's a difference between a question that can be answered by googling, and a question that is simplistic to the point of showing no thought. The awareness of that line is, I suspect, implicit in your inquiry, but sometimes it helps to make the statement. – LessPop_MoreFizz Nov 25 '14 at 22:55
  • I do notice this specifically when it comes to JRPG's. This is something I have been trying to do a little bit with them for some of the harder to find answers (and some easy ones). If it's going to be encouraged I would ask more but until now it was (reasonably) looked down upon. – Reafexus Nov 26 '14 at 13:00
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    I've often wondered why a question "being answered by googling" doesn't mean that Google can't simply lead them here. Personally, whenever I'm inquiring about anything, I prefer SE sites over any other source. – KOVIKO Nov 27 '14 at 14:37
  • @Koviko That reasoning is used to excuse much of the thoughtless types of questions we tend to get. The question still needs to demonstrate effort to some degree, and just going, "But this makes us the top spot on Google!" kinda misses the point; we have quality standards. Ones that don't get waived just because it hasn't been asked yet. – Frank Nov 29 '14 at 0:27
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I think it would be a good idea. We want new users to come to our site, and using big name games to get quality answers before wiki sites can even get properly organized means we are playing to our strengths.

New games have much less consolidated knowledge, and part of our goal is to provide quality answers, quickly and completely. LessPop touched on a metric, and I agree. We've gotten questions about old games, that technically did not meet the research requirements, but that we still accepted, and they're still pretty well upvoted. So long as the question meets the rest of the quality standards, I see no issue with seeding questions for new games.

I know I've done it before. If we want to draw new users that play these games, asking questions about problems you have encountered is a great way to do it.

For question seeding, though, let's make sure our questions are ones we'd be proud of, whether the game just came out, or has been out for some time. Not like this one. This doesn't meet LessPop's metric, but it's not closed, and it's not deleted. Let's not seed questions that set that example.

  • I did this a bit with Pokemon XY for common issues I had - if only to then go on and share my experience in an answer as well. If it helps a future visitor even once, it's done its job. :) RE: the Hyrule question: If you knew the answer, did you consider adding it yourself? – Robotnik Nov 26 '14 at 0:48
  • @Robotnik I actually didn't know. I checked the options, and I didn't see anything in there that would explain why it didn't work. My point is that I didn't go searching all over the net to try to find the answer; I just asked it here. – Frank Nov 26 '14 at 1:27
  • Ah, right. Fair enough, I must've misinterpreted that :) – Robotnik Nov 26 '14 at 1:28
  • Is it a different category to ask about games that are doing re-boots? (Eg. Metro Redux, Dark Souls 2 are also being re-released on PS4 and XBone) – Ben Nov 27 '14 at 2:13
  • This apply to smaller games and JRPGs too? I have some more Atelier questions I could ask. They're probably answered with a bit of research, but I would also risk spoilers on some of those sites. – Troyen Nov 27 '14 at 6:03
  • @Troyen Requiring previous research isn't a hard and fast rule; so long as it meets the rest of the quality standards, I don't think you'd run into any issues. I know I've played the Atelier games, and I could probably answer your questions. – Frank Nov 29 '14 at 0:30
  • @Ben Generally, reboots/remakes/remasters play just like the original game; so long as it hasn't been already asked for the original, I don't see why you wouldn't be able to ask. – Frank Nov 29 '14 at 0:32

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