Once an item has been removed from the game, there are a few steps that need to be performed on the article. These steps are aimed at marking the item as "removed" so players can readily see that the item is no longer available in the game, yet the article remains for research and historical purposes.
The steps that need to be taken in order to effectively "archive" or mark an item as removed are:
- Update or remove any links to the page by viewing the "What links here" special page (found in the "tools" section in the menu on the far left)
- If the article has an infobox, add the following parameter and value to the infobox:
| removed_version = VERSIONwhere VERSION is the game version in which the item was removed. For example, game version Alpha 13 removed all molds, so all molds should have the following added to the infobox:
| removed_version = Alpha 13. This automaticly adds the page to the Removed categories.
- If the article does not have an infobox, add the Template:Removed to the top of the page using
- Remove any category links in the article. The goal is for the article to be in only one category: Category:Removed_Items. Maintenance categories are an acceptable exception.
- Document your changes clearly in the Summary field when you edit the document.
Adding Template:Removed to the page adds a standardized statement to the top of the article that the item has been removed from the game. It also adds the article to Category:Removed_Items.
Adding the "removed" parameter to the infobox adds a short but visible statement in the infobox that the item has been removed but more importantly, it stops the infobox from auto-categorizing the article based on other, existing parameters. By removing the article from all categories, it should be removed from most big lists that are populated using categories as filters.
There is no need to delete articles about removed items or to blank the pages (removing page content while leaving the page behind). Instead, the article should be retained for historical reference and to retain context. If a user is researching the old rocket launcher, for example, and does a web search for M136, we want that user to find the old M136 page and see that 1) the item is no longer in use and 2) there is a new page for the new rocket launcher.
The goal of the wiki is to provide useful, relevant information and that includes information about items that have been removed from the game.
For more about how and when to mark an article for deletion, see Help:Deleting.