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For example, if I ask a question about Game A and tag System 1 but someone provides an answer for Game A on System 2, is that answer off topic, or "Not an answer" since it unrelated to the system at hand?

I ask because I see that this answer to a Battlefield question is for the PC version even though the actual Battlefield question is tagged for and it is currently flagged. However, a while back, I provided an answer to a Skyrim question that wasn't actually tagged for any platform (turned out to be PS3), but was told to answer anyway.

My inclination is that the platform tag is not quite as important as the game tag and that even if it doesn't provide a direct solution to the question, it still provides value to others who might be having a similar issue in the same game.


The answer has since been deleted (screenshot here), but a very similar answer looks to have shown up on a similar question.

I'm still unsure of how to handle the situation that I originally stated.

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  • For the person asking it makes a world of difference that the answer provided isn't about the system the game is played on! It might be the same answer but, often, it isn't so a answer to the pc version of a game on the console version of the same game is pointless and useless. If it is the same, the system tag needs to be removed. – Jonathan Drapeau Oct 27 '15 at 19:01
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    @JonathanDrapeau Then they shouldn't accept it. The example I provided related to Skyrim was useless to the OP since it dealt with console commands, but it was still valuable to others and not useless. – zero298 Oct 27 '15 at 19:04
  • The answer you provided is fine as the question isn't tagged with a system, someone looking for that question for pc will find you answer useful. Someone looking for the battlefield question on pc won't look at the one tagged for xbox, which means the answer was useless on that question. – Jonathan Drapeau Oct 27 '15 at 19:05
  • @JonathanDrapeau Considering that they state they are on PS3, it's not beyond reason to add the PS3 tag. – zero298 Oct 27 '15 at 19:16
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    @Jonathan - We're not here to just help the OP of the question, we're here to build a library of useful Q&As. The system tag should only be added if the question is truly unique to that platform, otherwise we should try and make it generic and provide solutions for multiple platforms – Robotnik Oct 27 '15 at 22:35
  • @Robotnik I'm well aware of that and it means this question is a duplicate of this one, and they both are asked by the same person nonetheless! If they are not made duplicate, the pc answer on the xbox tagged one is useless as we're leaving the same question open without a way to find the answer regardless of the platform used. – Jonathan Drapeau Oct 28 '15 at 12:03
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No

While an answer for a different platform might not help the OP, that's not all we're here for.

The pertinent meta post is here.

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  • The link you provide has a question promoting the removal of console tags.. but the answer suggests that if the question is specific to interaction with that console, it should be used. If OP asks a question about, say, game access on the store for Xbox, and you answer for playstation, its still going to help other users, but it doesnt answer the question.. – user106385 Oct 28 '15 at 0:24
  • @Timelord64 I might be wrong about how meta works (sincerely, I might be wrong, this is not passive aggressive posturing) but I thought in this case the highest voted answer is effectively site policy. In your example, a question about the Xbox store shouldn't be answered with an answer about the PS store. That's like answering a question about Witcher 3 by saying "Go to Whiterun and talk to the Jarl." However, my interpretation of the OP's question is more someone gives a PC solution to a game wide Skyrim question asked specifically by a PS3 user. It doesn't help the OP, but it might help – Dallium Oct 28 '15 at 0:31
  • @Timelord64 (cont) someone else. These answers are worthwhile, and not remotely off topic. – Dallium Oct 28 '15 at 0:31
  • addressed in my answer. I do feel this is a good answer, except it relys n the link. For future reference, never rely on links, even if its to this site. Provide the link, but include the important details. Be aware that if your answer can not stand by itself, without the link, its liable to be deleted. – user106385 Oct 28 '15 at 0:36
  • ultimately, your point is right. In the case of exclusive to the platform questions, an alt platform answer would be highly inaccurate, and most likely be removed on its own merits – user106385 Oct 28 '15 at 0:37
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In most cases, no.

I rarely see a situation where the question asked concerns only the specific platform. In most situations, I find the user tags the console simply because they are playing on the console. The appropriate thing to do, in these instances, is to remove the console tag and include mention of the console in the body.

As Robotnik says, a good answer will solve the problem on all platforms, and individual answers do not have to deliberately cater to all platforms. Skyrim is a bit different, in that the console platforms obviously do not have access to console for entering commands. In these cases, I feel it is still appropriate to include alternate platform solutions, to cater to future users that have the same question, but not necessarily the same platform.

I say "in most cases" because there are technically situations where answering for a different platform does not answer the question, at all. What if the user is asking about a platform-exclusive feature? What if the user is asking specifically in regards to a platform-specific service? There would be questions that can only be answered directly for the console. But in these few cases they will often send up other red flags, including obvious inaccuracy, to begin with.

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    Note that a single answer doesn't need to solve the problem for all platforms - having multiple answers with each addressing a different platform is also ok. – Robotnik Oct 28 '15 at 0:41

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