Show Your Game: Your Wiki

Your Homepage - Your Blog - Your Wiki - Your Lens - All That Jazz A Few Dollars More

So, a wiki is really just a specialized sort of web page that is designed to be easy to edit and add to, linking elements together.  The most famous of wikis is, of course, Wikipedia.   The same things that make this model suitable for the sum of human knowledge can make it useful for your game.

Like a blog, the decision to create a wiki is one that requires thinking about the kind of writing you want to do.  Wikis are best suited for when you have a large body of supplemental material, such as setting details or optional rules.  These are the sort of materials that create a certain amount of volume of text.  

Unlike a blog, a wiki does not need to be updated on any kind of schedule.  Once a wiki has enough useful material, it does not need to be updated. It only needs to be maintained. While the blog depends on a steady influx new material, the wiki depends on depth of content.

Wikis are also useful if you have collaborators.  Even if you are the only person writing your game, you may still have excited, enthusiastic people who would love to use the wiki to post their house rules, character sheets or personal experiences.  People like that are pure gold, and creating a wiki allows them to apply that enthusiasm without creating extra work for you and without any barriers to stop their work.

Setting Up Your Wiki

There's a lot of wiki software out there, but for our specific needs we need to look at the free services available online (which rules out the magnificent but offline tiddlywiki).  There are two real contenders in this space, wikidot and pbwiki.  Both do a good job, and you really will be fine with either, but from my experience you get a lot more out of wikidot.

So, swing on over to Wikidot, and go ahead and sign up for the name of your wiki.  The good news is that the default start page for your wiki will have all the information you need to get started. Read it, and once you have a sense of how it works, go to the site manager,  click 'pick appearance', and play around with themes until you find one you like.  

After you decide what your wiki looks like, you have an important decision to make about who can edit your wiki.  The three main options are only you, only pople you invite, or anyone.  By default, wikidot assumes that only site members can edit, and when you create the wiki, you are the only member.  When you find people who you feel you can trust to edit the wiki, then you simply send them an invitation for membership, and  you're good to go.

For some examples of things that can be done with wikidot, check out the Evilhat wiki and the Road to Amber wiki.  I've also set up a sample Show Your Game wiki on Wikidot.