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Yesterday I created the tag. I really think that it was needed. I feel that it is different enough from the tag in order to deserve a tag of its own. But I do have a little question, before I start to retag questions regarding villains with this tag. Do we need both and tags in the same questions?

Villains being usually NPCs, stating that they are NPCs doesn't help much. Thus having them both makes the tag quite redundant and rather useless.

So, am I alone in this? Do we need both tags for the same questions? Or maybe the tag is for more general questions regarding the entire population of NPCs or those that aren't covered by the tag?

A small clarification in advance: There are enough questions deserving the tag to justify this tag addition and creation, and even after the entire retag process there will still be a big enough mass of -tagged questions for this tag to justly stay.

Thank in advance

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Using both and on the same question is fine, and we definitely shouldn't remove the former just because the latter's present. The purpose of tags is "connecting experts with questions," and they "can also be used to help you identify questions that are interesting or relevant to you." The two will both do that just fine together.

Without the tag there, an entire set of NPC-focused questions won't show up in searches about NPCs. Villains are NPCs, so villain-specific advice is often useful in more generic circumstances, not least because many NPCs are more nuanced than "allies/antagonists." In replacing the generic tag with the specific one, I'm not sure what benefit we could get which would outweigh the disadvantage of forcing people to figure out that many NPC-related posts aren't tagged .

There's the issue of why is necessary at all, even if it supplements instead of replacing it. The guidance on creating new tags says:

You should always favor existing tags; only create new tags when you feel you can make a strong case that your question does cover a new topic that nobody else has asked about before on this site.

You've invented a new tag for questions asked by people who didn't seem to feel the need to create it themselves, and which is a subcategory of an existing tag, so a bit more justification should be given than "a lot of questions could use it." Tags should be created to answer a need, and usually that need is perceived through main-site trends--I see no such need or trend, so you'll have to make that explicit in your support for the tag.

Why ? Shall we tag , , and , too? It doesn't seem like a particularly useful category of tag. It's very specific (to only a certain class of antagonist: the villainous kind), and based on the lack of site convention, people won't even expect this tag to exist, both of which won't help people find the kind of question they want. Site usage bears me out: there's no movement among question-askers to tag for particular kinds of NPCs. If there is such a movement, I wasn't able to find it by searching for common names for types of NPCs... so such tags have failed to be useful to me. The closest I could find was , and that's being used as a mechanical term in two specific games rather than a general category of NPC.

There's a limit on how many tags a question can have (five), and that's a deliberate site design choice. Overpopulating a site with overspecific tags obscures information rather than making it easier to find, because it increases the need for users to search multiple tags to see which specific tag someone thought the useful question needed, rather than using a handful of general tags which allow the person to actually know if they've searched the site exhaustively--and in the end the goal of Stack Exchange is to make good information easy to find.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Re [villain], I was thinking just yesterday that it would be useful as a particular type of [campaign-development], and we already have a number of questions about villains in that context. While editing those, [npc] felt inadequate to cover the content of the question. And we don't really have questions about mentors, etc., so apples and oranges. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Jun 22 '14 at 14:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie I think that a new tag like this needs more justification, though. Please write an answer explaining why you think it'd be useful, because the proposal in the question doesn't really go beyond "We have questions that could take the tag," which is... not a sufficient reason for a tag, I think. \$\endgroup\$ – BESW Jun 22 '14 at 20:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ Tags don't really need to be proposed nor approved. People create them, and they live or die by whether the community starts using them or not. I made [rokugan] yesterday without a second thought, though I'm sure it'll be of limited use. This meta Q is really just about whether [villain] is redundant with the [npc] tag, not a referendum on its existence. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Jun 22 '14 at 21:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie Aye, I understand that and I addressed the primary question first. But in the more discussion-like atmosphere of meta I felt it was okay to also proffer my opinion on the tag itself. \$\endgroup\$ – BESW Jun 22 '14 at 21:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yeah, that's fair. I just don't feel the need to weigh in on it with my own answer because I don't feel like it's an issue that needs addressing, and I have no opinion on the main point since either works. Though I guess that's worth saying, too... \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Jun 22 '14 at 21:17
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Leave [npc] on villain questions

I can see arguments for and against. On the one hand, on those questions is redundant with and we often avoid tag redundancy. On the other hand, it make sense to have everything about NPCs available under .

Since I could see it going either way, probably it's best to leave the status quo alone and keep on those questions.


Aside, when adding to questions, best to do it only when you come across one in your normal browsing. We have about 60 questions that mention villains (though probably not all will deserve the tag), which is way too many to edit all at once because of the amount of front-page churn it would cause, never mind if the other 10 mentioning "big bad" and four that mention "BBEG" are also included in a mass edit.

If a question pops up on the front page, edit away; if you're looking for something else and find a question that's centrally about building villains, add it there; in general, adding the tag organically rather than all at once is preferable.

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Not all villains are NPC's!

Just 99% of them are, there are those 1% that are player-controlled!

Now, seriously. I would gladly adopt the Villain tag on my questions, if I happen to ask questions about creating, polishing villains or somehow related to them. It's a really good filter to search for those quetions later.

Villains are a really specific and major type of NPC. While Romantic-Interests and Mentor seen also reasonable, there are tons of games that such things never appear. Villains, however, are almost always there, lurking in the shadows of their Evil Evilness.

As this meta points out, is a subset of . Subset tags are OK, they just need to be useful and in this case, I think is.

However, I don't see the need to re-tag questions that already exists. If new questions arrive and the Villain tag gets a good adoption within the community, them we could consider going to the old questions and retagging them as they appear.

Anyway, it's a Good tag. Or should I say, an Evil tag? I'm... I'm cofused...

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You are welcome to use it to tag your question, but I don't see any need for a mass retagging effort.

You may make the tag more persuasive by filling out the tag wiki, however.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Re... gagging? I feel like I missed something. \$\endgroup\$ – BESW Jun 22 '14 at 11:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ s/gag/tag/ Edited. \$\endgroup\$ – Brian Ballsun-Stanton Jun 22 '14 at 11:56

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