Welcome to Factbooks & National Information!

A place to put national factbooks, embassy exchanges, and other information regarding the nations of the world. [In character]
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Welcome to Factbooks & National Information!

Postby Santheres » Sun Jun 03, 2018 11:11 pm

Welcome to Factbooks & National Information!

This board is dedicated to factbooks, national information, embassy exchanges, poll-based elections, surveys and questions, and a variety of factbooking- and worldbuilding-oriented topics involving your "NationStates country" (the country bound to your account or expressed by your account). While gameside factbooks and dispatches exist, this does not mean this board is suddenly unneeded; quite the opposite, in fact. As a board, Factbooks & National Information is intended to house all manner of information relating to your country, its people, society, culture, flags and iconography, mapping, and a nigh-endless myriad of topics that can help both you and others gain a better understanding - both for roleplay and as a respective community effort and embellishing and strengthing the roleplaying character of NationStates.

This thread, to that end, is intended to serve as a repository for all manner of information pertinent to Factbooks & National Information - to include the requirements an OP must meet for their threads, the suitable style of topics for this board, terminology unique to F&NI, guides and other resources for factbooking, and contact points for the Mentor Program. As such, this thread has been a product of Moderator and Mentor collaboration, combined with the collaborative efforts of countless community contributors over the years which have developed valuable guides and resources.

If you have any questions or would like some assistance, feel free to review the helpful threads and resources below, reach-out in the [F&NI General Help Thread], or contact a Mentor by selecting their link above.

Last edited by Kyrusia on Sun Jun 03, 2018 11:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Kyrusia » Sun Jun 03, 2018 11:14 pm

Thread Requirements

Over the years, Factbooks & National Information has struggled with finding a comfortable balance between being an open place for factbooking and worldbuilding discussion, and having topics which actually promote qualitative and substantial discussion. In an effort to help promote discussion and restrict spam, Moderation has defined the following as requirements threads must meet in F&NI, or they risk being locked as insufficient. Before you create a thread, please review the requirements below and be certain that your thread - regardless of its form - meets these requirements.

    1. Threads must begin with a substantive opening post.

    "Works-in-progress" are permitted, but must contain substantial information on their own. Do not open a thread with an OP that simply states "Work-in-progress" or similar. Do not open a thread that is simply a survey, questionnaire, or resource registry with no explanation. Do not open a "Your Nation"/"Your Leader"/other discussion topic without substantial information to actually promote discussion - that includes opening posts that amount to "see title."

    What are popular fashions in your nation?

    Climate and culture plays a significant role in a nation's fashion and customary clothing. A nation closer to the Arctic Circle will adopt fashion and clothing customs different from one which sits upon the Equator. What are popular or customary fashions in your nation?

    In Examplestan, due to its arid and semi-arid environment, clothing is often billowing, loose-fitting, and of light colors such as white or beige. Both men and women customarily wear robes, kaftans, or similar attire, often with an undershirt and other under-attire to provide layers for easy flow of air; similarly, the fabric itself is often manufactured with comfort in mind, combined with a mind toward serving as a defense against the dust and grit common to desert climates. As noted, white, beige, and other muted tones are common, but during the annual Examplestani Festival of Extravagance, this more modest selection is discarded in favor of one which embraces purples, violets, deep reds, sooty browns, and golden yellows - said to be in celebration of the sun and its rising and setting.

    Your Leader's Name:
    Date of Birth:

    While every person has a role to play in their nation, some roles are more important than others. Each nation has a leader (or leaders) - someone who, above the others, either due to military force or popular mandate, has the power to impact each and every person; in many cases, they also have significant power abroad, as well. This thread is meant to act as a repository for national leaders and other characters of significant importance from your nation. Please fill out the profile below and it will be added to the list in the OP.

    Date of Birth:
    Date of Death (If Applicable):
    Physical Description:
    Image Link (If Applicable):
    Parents & Siblings:

    2. Discussion threads must cover a topic which otherwise has a substantial likelihood of promoting discussion, and not simply invite spam or "drive-by posting."

    Not every tiny detail - from light bulb wattage to whether salt or pepper is preferred - needs a thread; expand upon your initial idea to include broader points of related discussion and/or otherwise ensure that enough information can be provided as for discussion to grow. (Such as "domestic and neighborhood infrastructure" or "herbs, spices, and cultural cuisine.") If you cannot do this, do not open a thread, as it will be locked; instead, look for another thread that fits your desired topic - which is a good recommendation to do in general - or post the topical question/survey in the Miscellaneous Worldbuilding Thread. Non-discussion threads (such as factbooks, embassies, news threads, etc.) must otherwise stand on their own merits with respect to the context of their purpose(s) and otherwise be of appreciable substance. Threads otherwise lacking content will be locked.

    "Light Bulb Wattage in Your Nation"
    "Your Leaders' Favorite Color"
    "Boxers or Briefs?"
    "Images of Important People in Your Nation"
    "Capital City Pics"
    "Name Your Capital"
    "Should I Change My Flag?"

    "Civil Rights & Liberties in Your Nation"
    "Cuisine of Your Culture: Compare and Contrast"
    "Biography: Your Leaders and Important Figures"
    "The Center of Governance: A Profile of Your Capital City"
    "Flags and Banners: Explanations, Meaning, and Imagery"
    "Important Ideologies in Your Nation: Good, Bad, and Definitions"
    "Foolish Laws: Mistakes Still on the Books"

    3. Threads must otherwise adhere to the rules and otherwise not promote spam, baiting, trolling, or other actionable behaviors.
Last edited by Kyrusia on Fri Jun 08, 2018 5:45 pm, edited 8 times in total.

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Postby Kyrusia » Sun Jun 03, 2018 11:14 pm

What Does & Doesn't Belong

Contrary to popular belief, Factbooks & National Information is not "a slightly more serious Forum 7"; both Forum 7 and F&NI have defined purposes and defined threads which do or do not belong within them. One is not a substitute for the other, and threads which are misplaced are likely to be moved to their appropriate board, merged to the appropriate thread, or outright locked. Below you will find a list of threads which do and do not belong on this board. Understand that a simply misplaced thread is not an egregious offense, but repeatedly posting threads in the inappropriate board - spamming - can rapidly result in warnings or bans as warranted.

    What DOES Belong in Factbooks & National Information
  • Factbooks, dossiers, and registries of information involving your nation.

  • Military and historical realism/consultation threads.

  • Non-military realism/consultation threads (such as for culture, religion, language assistance, etc.).

  • Your Nation's aircraft, ground vehicles, naval vessels, and similar design/consultation threads.

  • Non-military design/consultation threads (such as the "Create Your Own Everything" thread series).

  • One general map request thread, found at the aforementioned link. This does not prohibit map claim threads specific to roleplaying regions.

  • One general seal or logo request thread, found at the aforementioned link.

  • One general flag request thread, found at the aforementioned link.

  • Substantively defined/explained lists, registries, surveys, and questionnaires utilized in worldbuilding.

  • Embassy/consular exchange threads.

  • Poll-based election threads. Elections which are actively being roleplayed may be moved to NationStates; election threads which largely consist of party/candidate lists and a thread poll will be moved to Factbooks & National Information.

  • Substantive factoid, "Your Nation," "Your Leader," etc. threads.

  • Substantive question and answer threads.

  • Domestic news, newswire, or popular media threads. News outlet threads covering domestic news do not belong in any other board.

  • Roleplay region application or map claim threads.

  • Other substantive worldbuilding topics that are otherwise not categorized, but may arise.

  • Roleplay region worldbuilding/OOC hub threads, nation maintenance threads, or roleplay region (In-Character) news threads MAY be posted in Factbooks & National Information, though they are also generally acceptable in International Incidents or the NationStates board.

    What DOESN'T Belong in Factbooks & National Information
  • "Should or Shouldn't I?" poll threads. If you want to change your flag/seal/coat of arms/species/etc., decide for yourself or ask your friends via telegram or Regional Message Board. This board is not for crowdsourcing your decision making. If you want advice, there are designated threads either stickied on this board (or other boards) or listed in this thread.

  • "Make me a flag/coat of arms/seal/map/etc.!" threads. There is one thread each designated for general map, seal and logo, and flag requests. Any thread asking for these to be made will either be locked or merged to the appropriate thread.

  • Factoid, "Your Nation," "Your Leader," etc. threads covering nonsensical or insubstantial topics, such as light bulbs, your leader's favorite color, or whether your leader prefers boxers or briefs.

  • Any topic which is simply a thinly-veiled excuse to spam random images. Such does not prohibit the design/consultation threads, which otherwise aim for substantive and topical discussion as well.

  • Random help threads. There are stickied and listed topics across the entirety of the National & International Roleplaying boards which are dedicated to advice, assistance, and various forms of consultation. Errant "help me!" threads will be locked or merged to the appropriate thread for their topic, either in Factbooks & National Information or the board appropriate to the topic.

  • Any "Above Nation" (or similar) thread. Thread games do NOT belong in Factbooks & National Information, nor does any thread which functions like one, regardless of what they are called.

  • Any thread which otherwise lacks substance or does not promote discussion topical to Factbooks & National Information.

  • Any thread which otherwise has been defined as belonging on another board, but which may not be explicitly listed here.
Last edited by Kyrusia on Mon Jun 04, 2018 7:47 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Postby Kyrusia » Sun Jun 03, 2018 11:16 pm

Basic Terminology
  • Original Poster (OP): The Original Poster (or "OP") is the owner of a given thread. In International Incidents (as well as other roleplaying boards), thread OPs of non-discussion threads have the right to prohibit players from posting (and request Moderation enforcement if said player continues posting) and the right to request Moderation remove any post, lock, or (re-)open their threads.

    • Co-OP: Typically an OP-appointed member of the thread or organization which the OP has given limited powers to post on their behalf. Co-Ops may come and go due to player disputes, leading to possible conflicts with the provenance of authority any given "Co-OP" may have. Further, while discouraged, sharing of accounts does occur; simply being on an account that has once logged-into the OP account does not satisfy this requirement. As such, Moderation does not acknowledge any power to thread Co-OPs; thread Co-OPs may not request posts be removed, the thread to be locked, the thread to be (re-)opened, or request to have a player banned from the thread. Moderation requires explicit requests from the thread OP, not by-proxy or otherwise by any other party. This does not prohibit any player from reporting actual rule-violating content, merely that Co-OPs are not granted any form of power bestowed via thread ownership.

  • In-Character (IC): In-Character (IC) is any post or thread which is being written from the perspective of a fictional character, body, or organization which is distinct and different from the player. There is a respected divide between In-Character and Out-of-Character in the roleplaying community; Out-of-Character knowledge or impetus should not cross into In-Character posting and vice versa. For more information, see Meta-gaming (below). Simply because something is In-Character does not mean violating the rules is acceptable.

  • Out-of-Character (OOC): Out-of-Character (OOC) is any post or thread which is being written-by and utilized by players as players, not as a fictional character, body, or organization. There is a respected divide between In-Character and Out-of-Character in the roleplaying community; Out-of-Character knowledge or impetus should not cross into In-Character posting and vice versa. For more information, see Meta-gaming (below).

  • Secret In-Character (SIC): Secret In-Character (SIC) is any In-Character post which is hidden or should not be known by other characters and labeled as such. This may include things like encrypted communiques. A player having their character know such information without approval of the player controlling the SIC material may be guilty of meta-gaming.

    • Implied Secret In-Character (ISIC): A separate form of SIC, Implied Secret In-Character (ISIC) is any In-Character post which another character has no reasonable way to know about. This may include things like a whispered conversation or a Top Secret document in another room. A player having their character know such information without approval of the player controlling the ISIC material may be guilty of meta-gaming.

  • Tech Level: A country's tech level(s) is the relative level of technology (or technological advancement, aesthetic, style, or type) utilized during roleplay and/or the relative continuity of the nation in question. For more information, see Tech Levels (below).

Tech Levels
  • Past Tech (PT): Strictly speaking, Past Tech encompasses any piece of technology or continuity which is set before the present (or contemporary era). This ranges from pre-history to yesterday. Some exemplar aspects include: bow and arrows, spears, and Bronze Age technology; Middle Age fortifications, societies, and knighthood; lines of soldiers with muskets, cap-and-ball weapons, and the frontier; as well as trench warfare, airlifts, and recent historical anachronisms. At times, depending on a country's tech level, elements of Past Tech may be incorporated in other tech levels, especially Fantasy Tech/Fantasy and Modern Tech.

  • Modern Tech (MT): Modern Tech is typically understood to mean the current level of technology (and/or continuity) which is analogous to the real world. This varies, however, between players and player communities and may, further, include a variance in definition and execution. This can mean that to some, Modern Tech means strictly attempting to portray a country which could fit into the real world with minimal conflict, to a country which exists on a nigh-infinitely large planet ("NS Earth") and thus bound by a different set of rules than reality. Some exemplar aspects include: modern tank warfare, both carrier- and dreadnought-based naval combat, neo-imperialism and neo-colonialism, as well as resource wars. See the NationStates Modern Tech Advice and Assistance Thread for more information.

  • Post-Modern Tech (PMT): Post-Modern Tech is typically understood to mean any piece of technology or continuity which is generally beyond the scope of Modern Tech, but before the moment a country has developed faster-than-light (FTL) technology. Some exemplar aspects include: pervasive use of the Internet, nanotechnology, and cyberpunk aesthetics. There is a degree of overlap between both the continuity and aesthetics of Post-Modern Tech and Future Tech; there may also be mingling of certain forms of Post-Modern Tech and Modern Tech, depending upon player and player community. See the NationStates Post-Modern Tech Community Thread for more information.

  • Future Tech (FT): Future Tech is typically understood to mean any piece of technology or continuity which exists beyond the moment a country has invented faster-than-light (FTL) technology, specifically transportation/travel. Some exemplar aspects include: multi-system star-states, alien species, (neo-)imperialistic or (neo-)colonial cultures, and general space exploration. There is a degree of overlap between both the continuity and aesthetics of Post-Modern Tech and Future Tech, as well as certain situational caveats for what constitutes Future Tech - often situations where a country is soon to receive/invent FTL technology, either natively or via gift from another star-state (a process sometimes called "uplifting"). See the Future Tech Advice and Assistance Thread for more information.

  • Fantasy Tech/Fantasy (FanT): Fantasy Tech/Fantasy is typically understood to mean any piece of technology or continuity which contains elements of the supernatural or occult, magic, or certain "punk" aesthetics. Some exemplar aspects include: magic and the occult, wizards and witches, werewolves and vampires, high/low fantasy settings, and steampunk. Fantasy Tech/Fantasy is also sometimes included as situational amendments to other tech levels, meaning that players may, at times, incorporate fantastical elements into other tech levels; the acceptability of such (and the execution thereof) will vary from community-to-community and player-to-player.

Community Terminology
  • Bump/Bumping: The posting of a brief message (sometimes just "Bump") in order to boost a thread up to the top of the first page of a board. Sometimes understood to mean "Bring Up My Post." This should not be done in excess, as it may constitute spamming. Once every twenty-four hours or once the thread has fallen off the first page - whichever is the longer time period - is acceptable.

  • Embassy/Embassy Thread: An embassy thread is a style of thread where players open their country to requests of embassy or consulate establishment from other nations (other players), often with reciprocal arrangements. Such typically include applications, a list of restrictions for foreign embassies, requirements for the same, and may contain other information pertinent to diplomatic endeavors. Embassy threads belong in Factbooks & National Information.

  • Factbook: Derived from The World Factbook (CIA World Factbook). A thread, dispatch, website, etc. that acts as a repository for various forms of information about a given country, often functioning as an expression of worldbuilding. These can exist in a variety of formats, ranging from those similar to the aforementioned CIA World Factbook to a collection of narratives which provide insight into a country - or anywhere in between. Further, the information provided may be given as "In-Character," and thus can be "known" by any character, or may be given as "Out-of-Character", and thus cannot be "known" by any character; if unsure, ask before making an assumption. Not everyone has a factbook, though many players have notes on their countries in some form; expectations for players to have a factbook vary from region to region, player group to group, and even between tech levels. Factbooks belong either in Factbooks and National Information or on a nation's splash page through use of the factbook/dispatch feature gameside.

  • Ignore: Players cannot be forced to roleplay with any other player. Ignore (or the "IGNORE Cannon") is invoked when a player refuses to roleplay with another player; this may be simply in a single thread, or wholesale. In the case of the latter, typically means the player ceases to recognize another player's country as existing.

  • Mentor: A Mentor is a volunteer meant to advise, assist, and help other players gain a better understanding of roleplaying on NationStates, its given communities, and otherwise mentor with regards to roleplaying, writing, world-building, and a variety of other topics of relevance to the NationStates roleplaying community. Often called the "Mentor Program," Mentors are divided into "National & International Roleplay Mentors" and "Portal to the Multiverse Roleplay Mentors," which are further subdivided into "Senior N&I RP Mentors" and "Senior P2TM RP Mentors." Mentors do not have punitive powers; they may not warn, ban, or execute any other punitive action against players.

  • Moderator/Mod: Often an inclusive term describing any member of the NationStates staff which serve to enforce the rules, punish players when required (as with warnings, bans, or other punitive actions), and perform general forum maintenance (such as moving threads, splitting threads, and locking threads). More specifically, a Moderator is one subset of several different staff positions, sometimes referred to as "Moderation/Administration" loosely. See "All About the Mods/Suggest a Mod!" for more information.

  • Nation Maintenance Thread: A style of thread which consists of short stories, periodicals, or vignettes involving a player's own nation, and set in the same. Often used as a means of worldbuilding, concept exploration, or "maintaining the nation" as active - hence the name.

  • Newb(ie): A new player. See "How to Avoid Being a Novice" for more information.

    • Noob(ie)/N00b(ie): A player which repeatedly violates community standards (such as god-modding or meta-gaming). Typically used in a derogatory manner. Please note, using such may constitute flaming.

  • News Thread: A style of thread in which the player (or players) roleplay through presentation of In-Character news articles, stories, editorials, etc. Typically such come in two forms: regional news or domestic (national) news. Regional news are In-Character threads which, typically, may be posted within by anyone in an indicated roleplaying region, while domestic (national) news are strictly for a single nation. Domestic (national) news threads belong in Factbooks & National Information, only.

  • ORBAT (ORder of BATtle): A list of military forces (soldiers, equipment, assets, etc) within a nation's armed forces or what will be utilized in a given thread or post.

  • Tag/Tagging: The posting of a brief message in order to indicate a player is interested in a thread. Please note, posting of just "tag" constitutes "tag spamming," an actionable offense. Players should utilize the "Bookmark Topic" feature (bottom left of every thread).

  • Worldbuilding/World Building/World-building: The creative process of designing a fictional world, typically a player's country and related concepts. This includes designing a country's culture, political structure, economy, religion(s) or spirituality, history, language, social customs, etc., and, more generally, designing the details of any given, fictional concept (from corporations to naval vessels, firearms to fashion, etc.). Generally has overlap with concepts such as "conworlds" (constructed worlds) and "conglangs" (constructed languages).

For more general terminology used across the
National & International Roleplaying boards, please click here.

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Founded: Nov 12, 2007

Postby Kyrusia » Sun Jun 03, 2018 11:19 pm

Please keep in mind that some guides and resources are catered to specific tech levels. Standards expressed may vary considerably.

Rules, Moderation, and Technical

Tech Level Threads

General Art Request Threads

Design and Consultation

Resources on Warfare and Military Design

Resources on Non-military Worldbuilding and Characters

Formatting and Other Resources

Offsite Resources

Some items may be duplicated from other sources.
For more help and resources, please click here.
Last edited by Kyrusia on Mon Aug 26, 2019 7:57 pm, edited 7 times in total.

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Founded: Nov 12, 2007

Postby Kyrusia » Sun Jun 03, 2018 11:22 pm

Updates and Changes
  • Implemented new sticky in initial form. Many thanks to the NS Moderation Team, Mentor Program, and individual guide/resource authors. — June 4, 2018 (Kyrusia)
  • Created - and corrected the resource links for such - a general flag request thread, given the other one was, unbeknownst to silly Kyru, in Gameplay, and a recent one in F&NI could not be readily located. — June 4, 2018 (Kyrusia)
  • Added The List of National Leaders to "Non-military Worldbuilding and Characters" resource list. — June 5, 2018 (Kyrusia)
  • Added The NS Player’s Guide to International Maritime Law by Allanea to "Resources on Warfare and Military Design" resource list. — August 26, 2019 (Kyrusia)
Last edited by Kyrusia on Mon Aug 26, 2019 7:58 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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