What is a FAQ?
A FAQ, or "Frequently Asked Questions" is, for the purposes of GameFAQs, a guide that helps people either defeat a game, become more skilled at it, or provides information about it. It is often synonymous with "Guide", "File", "Walkthrough", "Strategy Guide", and several other names. It generally all comes down to just providing help for gamers who read the guide.
What kinds of guides does GameFAQs most need?
Generally, you should write for a game that you enjoy playing. If you can't decide, the best list of what GameFAQs needs is created by the users of the site, via the Most Wanted FAQs list. In addition, you can earn an Amazon gift card by writing a guide for one of the games listed in the FAQ Bounty program.
What kinds of guides does GameFAQs accept?
Aside from your general FAQs (Walkthroughs, Strategy Guides, Move Lists, etc), you can also submit the following:
- In-Depth FAQs: Focusing on one particular aspect of a title, such as a Boss FAQ, Item List, Combo Guide, Translation, and so on. Even purely informational non-gameplay guides are accepted, such as a Plot Summary or Game Script.
- Character FAQs: For fighting games and some single-character RPGs, character guides fully explore all the aspects of playing the game with a single character.
- Foreign-Language FAQs: GameFAQs accepts general (but not in-depth) guides in other Western languages (i.e. French, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, Swedish, and so on). Non-Western languages are usually not accepted, simply because they cannot be checked for content by the editor given his limited knowledge of these other languages.
- Other Guide Types: Custom Patch Code Lists, Achievement Guides, and many others. Basically, if you're providing some kind of factual information about the game, it almost always has a place on the site.
What kinds of guides will GameFAQs not accept?
There are types of guides that won't normally be posted on the site, except under rare circumstances. These are:
- Guides that cover multiple games: Your guide should only cover one game at a time. Possible exceptions are: 1) when the games are expansion or companion games to one another (i.e. Pokemon X/Y, Diablo III/DIII: Reaper of Souls), and 2) in-depth guides that cover a series of games (i.e. D&D Rule Set, Plot Guides for a game series).
- Guides for games that haven't been released yet: GameFAQs adheres to street dates for game releases and will not host content prior to a game's official release. FAQs based on the officially-released demo of a game are welcome.
- Online exploits: Cheating in online games is never a good thing, and game companies are banning people for this behavior.
- Checklists: Checklists of items, quests, or similar things that provide no actual gameplay information are generally just based off of others' work and provide no actual help or information.
- Works of fiction: Fan fiction, joke FAQs, and fan art do have their place on the Internet, but not here.
- Game Manuals: Game manuals are protected by copyright, and normally cannot be legally distributed online. The exception to this rule are translations of foreign-language (specifically Japanese) manuals for import gamers, which are very useful to the import gamer and have met with no known objections from copyright holders so far.
Will you accept a FAQ for (insert game here)?
If you follow the submission guidelines and your guide is complete and comprehensive, then the answer is almost always yes. However, once a game becomes saturated with guides, the likelihood of new guides being accepted dramatically decreases.
For In-Depth FAQs, rarely will a second FAQ on the same subject be posted. For Character FAQs in fighting games, three is the general limit; for wrestling or other titles, one is the standard maximum.
What is the Golden Rule of FAQ writing?
"Provide credit where it is due."
If you copy someone else's work without permission, that's a copyright violation. If you use someone else's work as a basis for your own without credit, that's plagiarism. Providing credit to those who helped you, no matter how small their input, is simple and ensures the integrity of your work.