Topic on Talk:Backstories

Jump to navigation Jump to search
Nitrodev (talkcontribs)

So me and User Xillen have been thinking about how to include the around 564 unique backstories on the wiki. SO far our ideas have been to create separate pages like so: 1 with proper name tags and proper gender tags 1 with proper name tags and hardcoded gender tags 1 with hardcoded name tags

That would leave 106 entries without any name tag, 135 entries with at least one name tag, but no gender tag, 323 entries with a name and a gender tag. And the 323 entries could be divided up to childhood and adulthood.

What are your thoughts about this?

Xillen (talkcontribs)

To add some background information, I've ripped the data for all the B19 background stories from the datafiles. There are way more background stories than currently listed on the pages.

There are 36 regular Childhood stories and 85 regular Adulthood stories. This includes both "Arrival" and "Tribal" stories, as well as few other ones that normally aren't be applied to "Arrival" or "Tribal", but can be found on others, such as Hermit.

Then there are 282 specific characters with their own unique Childhood and Adulthood stories, adding 282 additional Childhood and 282 additional Adulthood stories.

However, when trying to display more than 200ish stories in table format on a single page, the page will fail to load due to resource issues.

The regular Childhood and Adulthood stories all fit on the main Backstory page without any trouble, but the unique Childhood and Adulthood stories would have to be split off to different pages, at least 3, if we want to display them all.

Originally I was thinking of keeping the unique Childhood and Adulthood stories together. They always appear together on the same colonist, after all. However, that would mean that the 323ish backgrounds would have to be split in another arbitrary way.

Yoshida Keiji (talkcontribs)

In the age of hyper-information, having a lot of data is useless unless you understand the purpose of such display. Ask yourself, how do readers use this page? Personally, while I play the game, this list only becomes useful when we get "Chased Refugee" requests to evaluate if having a pawn with certain skill attributes would help the colony and if risking the current population would be worth taking him/her in or not. For example, the refugee is an Exotic Chef... Do I need a cook or another cook?

The list was created 5 years ago and I have been watching over it for a full year now. Even as of today, I still don't understand the relevance of the columns: civil, raider, slave, trader, traveler, tribal. All those seem completely pointless to me. The description on the other hand, is helpful because some backgrounds share a same name, so the stories can aid in distinguishing between them. But the most important part of all are the skill attributes: Cooking +8, Disabled at nothing. Making columns for each skill would probably stretch the table too much but may be possible. If rearranging the whole list, attribute skills I would place first and stories after as it is mostly irrelevant for "gameplay".

The Alphabet has 26 characters, so if the table needs a split that would be (A to M) & (N to Z). Now if a backstory is either "regular" or "special" it holds absolutely "no" value for me. As I play the game, I will never care for as who in real life created that background, or to whom it belongs to. Again, the only thing that matters to me are the stats. Tynan, on the other hand while he cooks B20, only needs to improve the message window and provides us both childhood and adulthood stories so that we can get the full combination of both backgrounds to see the full overhaul of a character.

Xillen (talkcontribs)

You make it sound like there's no in game difference between a regular or special backstory, only who came up with the backstory, but that's wrong. The regular and special backstories work quite different, and especially for the purpose that you use this list for, it's quite helpful to know the difference!

A pawn is either randomly generated or chosen from the pool of 282 unique colonists.

A randomly generated pawn receives a randomly chosen regular childhood backstory and (if old enough) a randomly chosen regular adulthood backstory. A randomly generated pawn never has a special backstory!

A unique character on the other hand has a fixed special childhood backstory and (if old enough) a fixed special adulthood backstory. These always match their name. For example, if you see a character called Engie, you are certain she has the Foundry apprentice childhood backstory and the Combat engineer adulthood backstory. Listing which childhood and adulthood backstories come together may thus be quite useful, but this only applies to unique characters.

Another good reason to separate them is the availability. There are a lot more randomly generated pawns than unique characters running around, and the randomly generated pawns have a much smaller pool of backstories available to them, so you'll see the regular backstory a lot more than the special backstory. If we keep all the regular backstories on the main page, then most of the time, you find the backstory instantly, and only on a rare occasion is it not listed there, and would you have to check the unique backstories.

Finally, it can be useful to have a proper list of backstories for when rolling new characters, either by spamming the random button, or by using Prepare Carefully. When spamming the random button, the regular backstories have a pretty good chance of popping up quite fast, whereas the special backstories are quite rare. There's also a question of balance. Some of the special backstories have ludicrous stats, and not everyone will be happy with them. And then there's the fact that a lot of special backstories have a hardcoded name and gender reference. If you use Prepare Carefully, you may want to avoid those backstories, as they look quite odd in your Bio.

I do agree with you that columns for stats would be more useful than columns for faction types. I'd like to give each stat their own column (with disabled jobs as Ex.png in those columns, but it's gonna be a bit finicky to give them a proper layout.

Yoshida Keiji (talkcontribs)

I know how Creative Rewards works, I submitted my own. The thing is, I get a Chased Refugee event, okay? When I read the message, by title of adulthood, any experienced player may find out if a character is regular random generated or it is special, but regardless of the pawn quality... I personally only care for the stats, not if the character is regular or special. The more pawns you get and the larger population you have, the higher the threat scale rises.

From reading your opinion, you seem to use this page for selecting a Dream Team. (I personally go with the first that pop and may or may not swap between the "Left Behind" but I never re-roll, but that's all just player preference.) As well as careful consideration with a mod called "Prepare Carefully". Honestly, I don't know that mod. The Wiki, by it's standard must oblige to inform from Vanilla sources only. So I have no idea how that mod affects your gameplay and team selection, but then again, that shall "not" matter to me.

The Wiki is a cooperative site, so there's nothing that you will "have to" tackle just by yourself alone, just ask for help.

Back to topic, when a Chased Refugee screen pops up, the game doesn't tell a player if the character is "special" or "regular" most new players will never notice the difference and may most likely accept or decline just as a matter of population boost or control only.

Reading your reply, I have no problem if you decide to make a list of "special" backgrounds only and split another for "regular" stories. The thing is that for practical purposes, I will still need to have both "visible" at once so that I have to check just one page and not two.

Xillen (talkcontribs)

If it would be possible to list all the backstories on a single page together, then naturally, that would make the most sense.

Unfortunately, due to technical limitations, that's not possible. If you post too much data on a single page, and try to view that page, the server either times out and the page doesn't load at all, or you get a resource error.

The reason it's currently working is because the vast majority of special backgrounds are missing. A few of those special backgrounds are included at random (I guess based on whatever the people that kept it up to date until now ran into), but if we want to display all the background information, we'd need 3 or 4 pages.

So, because of technical reasons, we HAVE to split the backgrounds up into multiple pages.

Since the regular backgrounds pop up way more often than the special backgrounds, and since it's possible to show all of them together on a single page without any issues, it makes sense to show all the regular backgrounds directly onto the Background frontpage.

The special backgrounds HAVE to be split up into multiple pages due to technical limitations. We're discussing how.

And honestly, if all you care about is the stats, and you already admitted that you can't see the childhood story, it would only make a LOT of sense to know if it's a special backstory, because if so, you would know which childhood backstory comes with that, and thus, which stats those would provide as well!

Yoshida Keiji (talkcontribs)

Proceed. If the whole listing will take 3 or 4 pages as you say, the only thing I care is alphabetical sorting, as long all background stories that start with "A" are on a same page that will do for me. One thing I forgot to mention is that background titles have two versions, original and concise/short. The Chased Refugee displays information with the later, and thus alphabetical sorting should be based on that. I understand the technical limitations, I was just weighting in that removing the unnecessary columns would open up more data space.

Yes, yes, yes. Like I said, I know. I got Darklight thousands of times (Umbra Nighthawk), in the current listing, the adult background already links to his childhood background too.

Like Pigeon Guru said, instead of removing content, just run your work in a sandbox first, and "ONLY" once it is fully complete, replace the current version, so that those who need a "real time" check now are not surprised with a work in progress page instead.

You are good to go.

Xillen (talkcontribs)

The severe restrictions placed on what people can do prevents people from making Sandbox tests. And I had all the information ready to be posted, only to find out when I posted all the information that it caused a resources issue. Had I been able to create new pages, I would've posted the tables on a new page first, and then updated this page, but that's just not possible.

Anyhow, it seems the higherups are unwilling to create new pages, so I'm just not gonna bother, and leave this stuff outdated. I don't care. I got all the useful data in my own spreadsheets. I can just use those. I thought it'd be appreciated if I'd share the information I had gathered, but people seem to hate me sharing the info, so I'm not gonna bother anymore. Goodbye!

Yoshida Keiji (talkcontribs)

There is no such restriction placed by ourselves. Can you print screen what is causing issues to you?

Xillen (talkcontribs)

I can't even edit my own userpage, as it doesn't exist yet:


There is currently no text in this page. You can search for this page title in other pages, or search the related logs, but you do not have permission to create this page.

Effectively, I have no rights to create new pages.

Yoshida Keiji (talkcontribs)

We have been looking into your problem for the past three days so far, at the moment I don't have a proper report. I created your Userpage myself so that you can edit yourself in the meantime. Regarding membership, at least from my own personal opinion, you showed up with Nitrodev and I have always looked well on this user both in the wiki and at the forums, so when I saw you together, I knew you were going to bring plusses here. There's no will against you at all and your responses always sounded well thought, I wish to help you only. We will notify you on any progress as soon as we can.

Xillen (talkcontribs)

I came in contact with Nitrodev over the Discord parsec, when I explained the issues I ran into (resource issues when trying to list all the backgrounds on one page, unable to create new pages).

He told me he could create new pages if needed, but he wanted input from others first, so he created this thread. So after your previous post I contacted him again, asking if he wanted to go ahead and create the pages, so that I could populate them, but then he seemed unwilling to do so.

Yoshida Keiji (talkcontribs)

The Wiki has a spambot prevention active which is set up to 10 edits per user before page creation is enabled. Just go around random pages and make same minor edits to boost your contribution counter and you will be able to create pages freely.

Botlord (talkcontribs)

Hi, what's the status of this? I was hoping to get a complete list of all the backstories for a thing I'm working on and if Xillen has already ripped them to a spreadsheet, that would save me a lot of work. Especially if it tied in traits and passions.

Xillen (talkcontribs)

I've updated the regular Backstories on my userpage:

Green = Childhood, Blue = Adulthood.

I'm not too happy with the looks. Due to a lack of vertical lines, it's pretty unclear which values relate to which skill. Are there any good solutions for this?

I haven't updated the unique Backstories yet. It'll be easier to do that once the format for the regular Backstories has been decided upon.

Botlord: If you're still reading this, you can find all the Backstories here: And then on the All tab for all Backstories.

Backstories do not affect passions (at least not directly). They determine: - Bonuses and penalties to skills. - Unavailable skills. - Body type (Adulthood body types take priority over Childhood body types). - Which faction types they can spawn for. - Forced traits (somewhat rare, never more than one). - Forbidden traits (even rarer, never more than one, never alongside a forced trait).