Why is this off topic? Its a video game tribute album. If I asked about the song "Ferdinand Wanders Out For a Late Night Haircut (Pettington Park)" or Scurvy Scallywags, this would be on topic? If he had instead titled this song "The Cake is a Lie" or "Winter is coming", and I asked "is the title related to video games somehow?" This wouldn't be off topic? Why is this off topic?

game Dev is the wrong place to send me.

  • Are the other songs in the album connected in more obvious ways? especially if the connection goes beyond names and actually harks back to the musical style of the soundtrack of the game it is referring to.
    – badp
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 0:13
  • 3
    @McKay I think you're missing part of the closure reason - that reason doesn't specifically tell you to go to gamedev, it says: "This includes speculative questions about developer intent, with respect to both mechanics and narrative." This (to me, at least) seems like a speculative question regarding the composer's (developer of the music) intent in relation to the narrative
    – kalina
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 0:23
  • While I agree that this question probably doesn't quite fit with Arqade, it seems a bit of a stretch to me, if you read down the About page, they mention TRON as a game inspiration came from, and some artists played certain instruments only on the TRON song along with others. So... All in all, it seems the song is based upon the old TRON game as it's the only game I'm not seeing listed in the track list. Though I could be missing something somewhere, at least you have an answer and know now that a video game tribute album question is controversial here at best.
    – LLF
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 2:06
  • @kendra yes, that song comes from the Tron game as best as I can tell.
    – McKay
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 3:06
  • @kendra I don't see why video game tribute albums are off topic. That's why I'm here on meta.
    – McKay
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 3:07
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    Honestly? It's not a video game. Most questions you could think of to ask here about tribute music for a video game is probably easily answered by a little extra research. In this case, it was pretty much on the page that sells the album. Tribute music is usually re-done music, not something completely new, so it begs the question: What can you ask about tribute music and have it be on topic and completely worth an answer? What game is it from? Technically, yeah, I can see that being on topic. But will (cont)
    – LLF
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 4:01
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    it help new users or future users? Very doubtful. Does it solve a specific problem? No. And your answers will most probably be very short or one-line, which tends to (though isn't always) be frowned upon from what I've seen. On top of that, the tribute music is only loosely video game related in that it's based off original music from a video game. So, off topic does make sense in the fact that it doesn't really benefit anyone as anything besides a bit of trivia.
    – LLF
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 4:05
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    I think that questions about video game tribute albums are about as on-topic on Arqade as questions about movies based on video games. Sure, they're tangentially related to video games, but they're not games, and that's actually a pretty big distinction. As for your other question, I tend to be of the opinion that "is _____ a reference to something?", in all of its forms (whether it has an obvious answer or not), is trivia and doesn't make for a very good question. I'd put it in the same category as trivia questions such as "what was the first game to do _____?", which are also off-topic.
    – Cloudy
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 4:57
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    Another relevant recent meta answer. Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 5:43
  • @Kendra (and others) You ask what I can ask about tribute music and have it be on topic? What about "One of the String Arcade songs is from Portal 2, titled Turret Suite. I've played Portal 2, but I can't recognize the tune. Where does that tune come from?" Is that off topic? That seems related to video games enough?
    – McKay
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 14:26
  • Even that question is pushing it because it is essentially trivia. Again I ask, how can it help new or future users? What specific problem does it solve? How detailed of an answer could you give? Even if it was on-topic, it wouldn't be a very good question.
    – LLF
    Commented Feb 20, 2014 at 0:53

2 Answers 2


While it may be a video game tribute album, as you may have noticed, in the song list they list the games each song is from. Considering they don't list one for that particular song, it may be because it is not actually related to video game music at all, and might be an original composition or some such.

At any rate, it got closed because it is speculative - the only people who are likely to know precisely why that song is titled such, and why it is related to gaming (if at all) are the people who wrote/composed/created it, not us.

Furthermore, you yourself admitted you aren't even sure if it relates to gaming whatsoever. That alone makes it off topic - sure, a lot of their music is gaming themed, but that doesn't mean that us gamers know anything about some random gaming themed music.

To answer your second question, if the title was different, maybe it would be more directly gaming related, but that doesn't mean we handle questions about music. As it is, we rarely handle anything "gaming" that isn't video games. (There are some exceptions, like Identify this Game stuff which comes with identifying artifacts, but that is still fundamentally asking about a game.)

We didn't instruct you explicitly to ask on GameDev - this question would most definitely not work there, as it has nothing to do with actually developing games. That just happens to be a small part of the wider close reason that does apply to your situation. We are not the composers, we are not in their heads, and thus, we have no way of knowing why they called the song such.

  • So if I don't know if it's related to games, it's off topic automatically? So if someone asked a question "A friend of mine said 'all your base are belong to us' is a video game reference, and I don't believe him, is it a video game reference?" that question would be off topic? Because the asker doesn't know for sure?
    – McKay
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 0:42
  • Isn't the purpose of a QA site for people who don't know for sure?
    – McKay
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 0:42
  • I haven't played every game out there, some of the games referenced the album are ones I haven't heard of. So I don't know that Pettington Park is a game, but it's on a video game tribute album. I presume its a game, but I'm not sure. So that automatically makes pettington park off limits too?
    – McKay
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 0:46
  • "but that is still fundamentally asking about a game" I am fundamentally asking about a game. Identify this game is on topic right? Even if they actually have screenshots from a movie? The title is my artifact. Is this some "all your base are belong to us" or "spoony bard" I don't know about?
    – McKay
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 0:50
  • "So if I don't know if it's related to games, it's off topic automatically?" In my opinion, yes, and I'd recommend the converse: don't ask a question unless you, at the very least, know it to be related to video games. If someone doesn't have enough information to even know that, I would suggest to that hypothetical person to do a bit more digging to see if they can fit it into a question that fits closer to the site question guidelines.
    – Cloudy
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 4:45

Yes, the title of the song DOES make a difference, because certain songs are very obviously video-game references, and if they are, we can point you to exactly where in that video game the reference is made.

Unfortunately, if this song is related to a video game in some way, the artist has not made it clear, and the title of the song also does not make it clear which game it is referencing.

You may have instead tried asking "Is this title a reference to the Tron game?", since as you said, most of the songs are, and anyone with knowledge about that game could answer that question.

But without knowing what, if any, video game it is related to, we cannot offer an answer. Unless you have some information that the song artist provided that proves it is definitely a video game song, and preferably which game it is from, we can't answer this question.

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