This question was closed: How can I effectively use Zangief in SF 4 Volt for iPad?

I have no idea why, except that apparently I was asking for a "guide" (aka. an online resource). I'm not aware of this being a terrible thing in any Stack Exchange site. I've seen countless questions that request guides/tutorials/books for things across several different Stack Exchange sites.

Is gaming different somehow? If so, searching for "guides" on this site should not yield so many questions that are open.

  • 2
    If we try to help you with your question it's not out of disrespect, it's because we know your current question doesn't fit on the site. Engage in rollback wars and this is the outcome.
    – badp
    Jun 20, 2012 at 16:01
  • well, in my defence first edit was just wrong (removed reference to iPad, the non-iPad games are different) and the second was a terrible re-wording of intent.
    – bharal
    Jun 20, 2012 at 16:12
  • @bharal I've made one last attempt at fixing your question and making it reopen able according to the standards of the site. I'd encourage you to look it over, and make any further adjustments you feel are necessary. I hope we can get you a good answer. Jun 20, 2012 at 17:13
  • @LessPop_MoreFizz hey, thanks for that. i've made a small addition to the question as proposed
    – bharal
    Jun 20, 2012 at 18:11
  • At least the question is reopened now. The linked one.
    – Jim Jones
    Jan 10, 2016 at 0:00

3 Answers 3


So the short version is, the 'guide' side of things is normally minor enough that it gets ignored, but your question had all kinds of other issues that caused it to get attention.

The long version is that, on the whole, we don't do well with questions that amount to requests for lists of things that you can find elsewhere on the internet. Some people phrase their questions in this way anyway, but, as even a cursory inspection of the search results for 'guide' will tell you, most actually get detailed, specific answers written by users here at Arqade. It's kind of one of the things that makes us special.

Now certainly, there are times that a link and a brief summary is a more appropriate answer, and we get those sometimes, and that's fine, but the key thing is that that sort of determination - that a link to an external resource provides a better answer, should be left to the people writing the answer, and to voters. Your question should pose the actual problem you face and want to solve. By skipping one step forward to one appropriate solution and excluding others for no real reason, all you're doing is unnecessarily limiting the quality of the responses you got. Your question was edited to prevent that.

I've made one last attempt to salvage your question. If you're okay with it, awesome! If you think it's more or less fine, but would prefer to change around the details in some way, feel free to edit it! If you'd rather just not ask the question at all, I'll have to recommend just deleting it at this point, as it's not going to be reopened in it's previous state.

  • so what you'd rather is a bunch of questions "in sf4 what are some strategies to handle sagat using zangief" for each character, and then questions for "what is a combo for zangief that does a min of 20% damage"? this seems cumbersome.
    – bharal
    Jun 20, 2012 at 15:43
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    @bharal Yes we would. That is how this site works.
    – fredley
    Jun 20, 2012 at 15:45
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    @bharal You could just as easily have posted a question of "How can I most effectively play Zangief?" With text in the question noting that you were particularly interested in strategies against specific opponents and high damage combos. Your question wasn't too broad, it wasn't broad enough because you seemed intent on not allowing someone to provide you with a originally composed answer. Jun 20, 2012 at 15:45
  • Questions like "what are some strategies" are also probably off-topic, because they are too broad. Stack Exchange is geared toward specific, answerable questions -- not open-ended questions, or blog-like debates. Jun 20, 2012 at 15:46
  • @bharal That said, some questions are too broad, and in those cases, yes, we would prefer questions about the individual scenarios that you're looking for help with. For more of my own thoughts on this matter, you may want to read this meta post which deals with a similar issue. Jun 20, 2012 at 15:46
  • @LessPop_MoreFizz: hm. Ok, this is a fair point. I suppose i really was wanting to know where (if any) there were communities for sf4 volt discussions. Is that question then simply unaskable here?
    – bharal
    Jun 20, 2012 at 15:50
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    @bharal As a rule of thumb, questions that ask us to provide Links to Things, be it game recommendations, wikis, forums, or videos are not good fits for the way we do things here. The fact that sometimes Links to Things happen to be the answer to a question does not make requests for them any more on topic. Jun 20, 2012 at 15:58

From the FAQ: "What kind of questions should I not ask here?"

Your questions should be reasonably scoped. If you can imagine an entire book that answers your question, you’re asking too much.

Therefore, if the answer to your question is an entire guide, your question is probably not well scoped. ;)

  • The question isn't - for that very reason "can i have a guide for zangief". The question is for a link to a guide. I feel there is a real distinction between the two, no?
    – bharal
    Jun 20, 2012 at 15:35
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    @bharal So your question was 'Can you do some Google research on my behalf?'
    – fredley
    Jun 20, 2012 at 15:38
  • @QAdley - now we're getting rude! No, that was not the question. In fact, to extend your logic like that would imply all questions on SE are "please google" questions. There are places people go to discuss, say, Skyrim or Diablo 3, and there are forums and communities for varying games. In the case of sf4 volt, i've never found one via a search engine, hence the question here.
    – bharal
    Jun 20, 2012 at 15:41
  • I'm not sure there is a difference, other than the answer becomes dependant on an external site which may disappear at some point in the future, making the answer useless to people who find the question later.
    – raveturned
    Jun 20, 2012 at 15:51
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    Also note from the FAQ: "To prevent your question from being flagged and possibly removed, avoid asking subjective questions where […] every answer is equally valid.". If every person who answers posts a link to a different guide, you effectively end up with a list question where every answer is equally valid.
    – raveturned
    Jun 20, 2012 at 15:55
  • @raveturned I'd interpret that FAQ point differently, otherwise this version of your last sentence would be true as well: "If every person who answers writes a different guide, you effectively end up with a list question where every answer is equally valid." Whether written up or linked, answers like that are not equally valid because they will differ from each other -- different strategies, missing or incorrect facts, varying reputability of the sources, etc. Jun 20, 2012 at 16:28
  • That part of the FAQ is specifically talking about poll questions and their ilk, where you ask for opinions. Various opinions are by definition equally valid answers to the question, since it was soliciting nothing more than opinions. I guess you could argue that "What are some guides" has the same problem, but I'd contend that the asker has criteria for answers (usefulness, accuracy) even if they aren't explicit. Whereas you can't really put criteria on opinions ("only people who agree with me please!" lol). Jun 20, 2012 at 16:31

Your question was closed because it was off-topic.

The community decides what is on-topic and what is off-topic. In the case of gaming, they decided that asking for links to guides is not on-topic for the site. There are other examples of this, notably on StackOverflow is is specifically off-topic to ask for links to external resources. See this meta post.

You are also engaged in an edit-war in the question you linked. Edits are matter of course for all StackExchange sites. Other users will edit your questions and your answers in order to make them a better fit for the guidelines for the site. Let these edits stand unless they make material changes to the substance of your original post. In this particular case, that isn't true. The edits simply re-focused the question. The text that was removed in those edits was additional questions (one question per post, please!) and editorializing. For example, "google and bing aren't getting much traction for me on the issue" is not relevant to the question.

Speaking of guidelines, you asked:

there are 194 articles found using the term "guides", why are they not all closed?

Good question. The reason is because the community both decides what the guidelines are, and the community acts on those guidelines. The community is responsible for closing off-topic posts, etc. Sometimes we miss stuff. Things slip through. Bear in mind that the Stack Exchange sites are not perfect models of their guidelines. The presence of other unlocked, off-topic questions does not make your question on-topic by default or by association.

  • On the subject of retroactively applying policy - we do do this, but it's an incredibly time-consuming activity, and off-topic guide questions are not in our lazer-cannon sites at the moment. This may happen in future though.
    – fredley
    Jun 20, 2012 at 15:43

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