Regarding these kalina's (useful) questions and answers about Payday 2:

Is Arqade a place for guides and walkthroughs ? I thought it was off topic or something like that, perhaps because it wouldn't strictly fit the Q&A format (I've already seen questions/answers of this nature closed on SO, but can't find it back so far).

That being, these questions seem to cover what could belong to "Puzzle solving or obstacle clearing", which seems ok according to the help page.

I'm asking essentially because I've already avoided to write such questions and answers, thinking it would be closed asap.
I wouldn't like to get the wrong idea ;)


5 Answers 5


It is, if the scope is reasonable.

If you feel like an answer to such a question would be improved by a table of contents, the scope is almost definitely not reasonable for this site.

  • 2
    "If you feel like an answer to such a question would be improved by a table of contents" ... I don't get it, are table of contents off topic on Arqade?
    – kalina
    Commented Sep 23, 2013 at 8:35
  • 9
    @kalina No, but it means your answer covers a different enough, vast enough matter that you pine for multiple sections in your answers, cross-linked (which we can't do). This is probably the sign of a question that's too wide in scope
    – badp
    Commented Sep 23, 2013 at 9:16
  • Ah right, well I know well enough to not post a "how can I complete all the heists in payday 2?" question
    – kalina
    Commented Sep 23, 2013 at 9:21
  • 4
    @kalina I know you know what you're doing. Others might have seen this as a green light to ask such a question.
    – badp
    Commented Sep 23, 2013 at 9:44
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    @kalina I tend to ask those questions at places like GameFAQs Enjoy that walkthrough.
    – Cole Busby
    Commented Sep 23, 2013 at 19:25

I think that possibly you're thinking of our stance towards questions asking for guides: we're not a link aggregator, but in this instance the guides exist on Arqade, rather than an answer being posted forwarding somebody on to another site. There is a great difference between somebody posting "Yeah, go to this site and read the guide" and somebody posting a guide on our site.

In this instance, it's not off topic: each question is about a particular problem being experienced in a game which can be definitively answered and that do not result in extensive list answers.

The reason I've been writing guides on Arqade and not on Steam are as follows;

  • There's no reason not to create guides here, one guide per situation keeps the scope limited and the multiple answers per question allows multiple methods of completing the map to be posted if others want to contribute, with each potential tactic being voted upon

  • Better SEO - if you search for "How can I pull off a Bank Heist" on google, you will get Arqade as the first result. It's easier for the rest of the internet to find the information if it is posted on Arqade rather than on Steam

  • Less noise - Stackexchange is about less noise and more signal, Steam is full of noise, a guide posted on Arqade will get updated if patches change stuff (I will see to that if others don't)

A previous conversation discussing creating Q&A style boss tactics for WoW bosses happened in the bridge (about 10 lines of conversing about how guide-style posts would work) in the past but I never got around to writing guides for WoW before I quit the game, I am, however, applying the same thoughts to writing guides for Payday 2 heists.

  • 3
    Are you sure typing "How can I pull off a bank heist?" into Google is such a great idea? :P
    – user98085
    Commented Sep 23, 2013 at 8:50
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    I don't think it's any worse than "How do I cook meth?"
    – kalina
    Commented Sep 23, 2013 at 8:51

This feels like you're more against the (awesome) self answers that are very in depth instead of the actual questions. The questions themselves don't really require the expansive answers, and instead could probably be sufficiently answered with a numbered list.

If an answerer wants to provide a full walkthrough, that's great! It just makes us look that much more awesome to search engines. The problem comes when a question requires a full walkthrough as an answer. If that's the case, then we would generally ask the op to narrow the focus of the question. For the examples provided, they don't feel like they're too broad to me (granted I haven't played the game, nor the original). As I said, I think they could be answered with a numbered list. If the questions were instead asking for a step by step guide in extreme detail, we'd have a problem.

  • This is a very good distinction to keep in mind; it's the attributes of the question that determines topicality. I skipped all the questions in the OP when I first saw them because (I don't play the game &) their titles suggested a perfectly fine scope for Arqade. Commented Sep 23, 2013 at 15:38
  • 2
    I disagree. Guides go in guides sites; this isn't one. A good guide site lets you do intralinks, let you do tables, give you more control on your input and maybe even let you embed some javascript. A good guide site would give you one guide per page, and it'd be considered the canonical guide for others to improve upon. This site is nothing like that. You wouldn't and shouldn't write gamefaqs-style guides on this site, either as an answer or as a self-answer.
    – badp
    Commented Sep 23, 2013 at 17:58
  • @badp I'm coming back to this now only because the question has been bumped. Are you suggesting that if I feel an answer deserves an in-depth guide (that's still restricted to the scope of the question), I should go to another site (!), write the guide, and then in my answer, not only link to that guide, but provide a summary for it as well?! A summary which could very well be a third to half the length of the guide? That doesn't seem like the way we should be doing things.
    – MBraedley
    Commented Oct 2, 2013 at 14:38
  • @MBraedley No. I'm suggesting that a question that requires very, very, very long answers shouldn't be answered to begin with. This is about breadth, not depth. The idea though is that you shouldn't ask people to try and write multiple, competing definite books on how to play Nethack that people can vote upon.
    – badp
    Commented Oct 2, 2013 at 15:05
  • @badp Okay, I can agree to that. What I'm saying in my answer though is that the example questions don't require that type of depth (although, admittedly, they do invite it), just like many other questions. Of my 6 longest answers (2000+ characters), 4 of them are for KSP. While not particularly long, they do show the kind of depth that I think is appropriate. I could have made any of them shorter, but should have I?
    – MBraedley
    Commented Oct 2, 2013 at 15:26
  • @mbradley they should be as long as you'd like - and not any further. The principle in other words is that SE is supposed to make knowledge sharing happen in small fun-sized bite. Your fun-sized bite size can differ, but no question should ask for more than any one reasonably fun-sized bite can chew.
    – badp
    Commented Oct 2, 2013 at 19:11

I'm kind of torn on this issue. I love the idea that we could write small walkthroughs for some sub-sections and\or particular stradegies of games. It would give us more traffic and considering the effort some of put into our answers I'm sure good rep could be had by all.

However at the same time .se seems to be about strictly 'just the facts ma'am' questions and answers. That concept doesn't seem to include in-depth walkthroughs, as they tend to deviate from facts and delve more into the concept of specific stradegies that would by nature include opinions or 'this is how I did it' concepts. I think the nature of our site prevents this kind of answer. I'm unsure if Arqade is unique enough within the .se network to circumvent this... I would certainly like to see it happen though. That's my 2cents on it anyway.

  • @Cole mentioned GameFAQS in his comment above, and that's kind of what I'm getting at here, I would LOVE if Arqade could compete with them, as I feel we really could give them a run for their money, but that just doesn't seem to be what .se is all about.
    – Ender
    Commented Oct 2, 2013 at 14:17
  • 1
    The nature of our site does not prevent subjective answers. In fact, the "Good Subjective, Bad Subjective" doctrine specifically sanctions and encourages subjective answers that are rooted in personal experience of what does and doesn't work. So long as the question itself isn't just a hat for the walkthrough to wear and blend in with the locals, but is actually a decent question that can have competing answers, it's good. Commented Oct 2, 2013 at 21:49

Considering the new Documentation feature over on SO, I think it would actually be a huge benefit to have our own repository of guides, tips, and even walkthroughs, which could be compiled easily enough from existing answer posts. It seems to me like a natural extension of that, and exactly the kind of game Documentation that would be available in Arquade.

I was actually wondering how or where to ask about this or propose the idea myself when I ran across this question.

I personally would want to contribute a lot to it. I've often made personal notes and guides after being unable to find any online.

  • Probably best to raise this as a new meta, "Could we get the Documentation feature on Arqade?" etc etc
    – Robotnik Mod
    Commented Nov 15, 2016 at 22:23
  • Thanks for the direction. Figured I'd try to find an existing post before trying to make a new one. I'll do that.
    – Tim
    Commented Nov 15, 2016 at 22:45

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