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I don't usually hang around on meta, so not sure if this has been discussed before. But just a suggestion.

Seems to me one of the silliest, most frequent duffs that happens on gamedev (and SO as well) is the posting of subjective questions.

Just as the SE sites suggest existing questions to prevent you from re-asking the same, and will also suggest what might be subjective, could we not show a note in bold, every time the "ask question" page is hit, that tells users to that if they have discussion-oriented or otherwise subjective questions, they should take them to gamedev.net (or other game dev sites of a similar sort), or the forums of the technology relating to their question? It's a bit silly when newbies post questions about obscure engines to our forums first and foremost, flattering as it is to us all, when they should really be directed elsewhere.

Anyway, I'm not sure whether the policy of SE allows suggesting redirections to non-affiliated sites. Though I'd think that'd be sad, since I know there are a number of us who have been long-time denizens of gamedev.net (Kylotan, myself, and I recall seeing others).

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The "I don't know anything about game development how do I get started?" question seems to come up so frequently it seems like it might be worth explicitly calling that out on the "Ask a question" form, maybe even with a few helpful links to tutorials and/or more discussion oriented sites.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ As potentially annoying as a question it is, this is in a lot of ways a very legitimate question to someone in need of a bit of mentorship. \$\endgroup\$ – Tim Holt Mar 20 '12 at 21:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ I certainly don't want to discourage anyone, but those kind of questions are hard to answer other than with boilerplate "check out these resources" kind of reply. Plus, if they get a little bump and come back with a more specific question, they'll probably get a better reception on the site. From the other angle too, I think it would benefit the site to have a better ratio of absolute beginner type questions to more advanced topics. \$\endgroup\$ – Jason Morales Mar 21 '12 at 4:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ The rules are already there, and are clear enough. "Tell me about topic X" can be solved by searching for X using the search function or using a search engine. It's way too generic. Something like "if the answer is a book than you are asking too much" is in the faq. \$\endgroup\$ – Darkwings May 27 '12 at 21:04
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SO has their Definitive C++ Book Guide and List. I would think a similar community wiki question polling for the best/most reputable/kindest forums for a few specific categories (e.g. Polycount for 3D art) would be a good place to redirect people who want a discussion more than an answer. Rather than being redirected to one specific site, this would also give them the opportunity to refine their search a little bit by domain, and would give us the ability to keep such a list of community bookmarks alive and up-to-date.

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Anyway, I'm not sure whether the policy of SE allows suggesting redirections to non-affiliated sites.

Indeed it does, particularly if those questions are egregiously off-topic for this site as you note.

could we not show a note in bold, every time the "ask question" page is hit, that tells users to that if they have discussion-oriented or otherwise subjective questions, they should take them to gamedev.net

We do have some specific help on the sidebar of the ask page:

How to Ask

  • Is your question about game development?

  • We prefer questions that can be answered, not just discussed.

  • Provide details. Share your research.

If your question is about this website, ask it on meta instead.

That also links to the FAQ and asking help page too: https://gamedev.stackexchange.com/questions/how-to-ask

I don't know if it'd be appropriate to speculatively link to a specific discussion site, but certainly we do try to make it clear that subjective questions aren't what we do here.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Hi Jeff. I guess what I'm saying is that it appears this information isn't sufficiently in-the-face, or presumably we wouldn't get as many of these discussion-type questions. If this were the early 90's I'd suggest flashing bold text and animated GIFs :) If we offered an immediate, linked alternative directly above or below the post (sidebars may be overlooked), it might help more. And if such were DHTML enabled as is the pop-up for when a potentially subjective question is asked, all the better. \$\endgroup\$ – Engineer Jan 22 '12 at 10:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ Re the linking to a specific site, unusual suggestion I know, but I think a relationship does exist due to the name, which is unlikely to be a coincidence since gamedev.net coined the term gamedev on the www, and I expect that provided the roots for this site at Area 51. Since it is discussion-oriented, and it has the same name, it seems a logical place to send users. \$\endgroup\$ – Engineer Jan 22 '12 at 10:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ well, feel free to leave comments directing these subjective questions elsewhere. How many per day are we talking? \$\endgroup\$ – Jeff Atwood Jan 22 '12 at 10:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ That's tough to answer, because I'm not as regularly active as I was a few months back. Given that during the 14-16 hours a day that I'm about, I see roughly 2-3, then I'm guessing 3-5 over 24 hours is not unlikely. You would have to ask @Tetrad to be sure though, since he probably ends up being the guy offering closing votes. Others can feel free to shoot me down on this if I'm wrong. It's not back-breaking, if that's what you're asking, but it is sufficient to be noticeable on a daily basis, especially (I'm sure) given our limited number of core users. Comments? I do. It's tedious. But I do. \$\endgroup\$ – Engineer Jan 22 '12 at 11:05

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