Author Topic: ADVANCED Style Guide  (Read 5452 times)


ADVANCED Style Guide
« on: May 21, 2020, 09:56:28 am »
These are the general rules for creating entries, based on the original Style Guide thread, but (hopefully) made more concise and easier to understand. Platform specific style guides appear in the Style Guide forum.

Item Name
Item Images
Release Type
Developer and Publisher
Item Number
Release Date
Box Text
TLDs and Import Labels
ASCII Codes for non-Latin characters
Japanese Loan Words
Console Release Dates
Image Editing Guidance
« Last Edit: January 24, 2024, 09:46:58 am by tripredacus »


Item Name
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2020, 10:09:40 am »
Item Name
An item name can consist of multiple parts. The type of item determines which parts are used.
Physical Games: GameTitle (descriptor) - Edition [TLD]
Hardware: Manufacturer ItemName (descriptor) - Edition [TLD]
Note: descriptor, Edition and [TLD] are only required if necessary to make sure more than one item in a category does not have the same name.

Item titles must not be all lower or all upper case.
Use the Chicago Style for capitalization of titles:

GameTitle is the commonly accepted game name. Our primary source for common titles is GameFAQs. They can be found in the Releases section, or on pages for a specific release's box art.
A name source may have errors in their title that need to be corrected before used here. These may include using numeric vs roman numeral, title for a localised version that doesn't match the art, or a translation/romanization error.

Common Name Exceptions List

Subtitles after Punctuation
Subtitles use a colon but should not use a colon after punctuation. Some games will use punctuation such as exclamation point ( ! ) , question mark ( ? ) or even a period ( . ) in an ancryonym before a subtitle. In these cases, the colon should be omitted.
correct: Overcooked! Special Edition
incorrect: Overcooked!: Special Edition

Games with multiple subtitles
We use the hyphen ( - ) specifically for Edition notation. If a game title from another site uses a hyphen for a game with multiple sub-titles, replace it with a colon ( : ). When using a colon, make sure to not put a space before it, as is common in Europe.

Example: Kidou Senshi Gundam: Ghiren no Yabou: Axis no Kyoui V
Name as it appears on GameFAQs: Kidou Senshi Gundam: Ghiren no Yabou - Axis no Kyoui V
Since we reserve the hyphen for Edition notation, it cannot be used in this context and the hyphen is changed to a colon.

All item titles must use the Latin alphabet. Non-Latin languages (such as Japanese) cannot be used and should be put into Alt-Name instead.
Item names must be unique in a category, or no two items in the same category is allowed to have the same item name.
Our formatting rules override a common title as listed on another website.

Games with multiple game names
Often there will be releases that have multiple game names, but have no on-package formatting that can easily be determined. For situations like this, we use the forward slash ( / ) to separate them. And there should be a space between the end of one title, the slash and the beginning of the next.
Planescape: Torment / Soulbringer (Dual Jewel) is one example.
DO: Game Title / Game Title
Not: Game Title/Game Title

Games with an abbreviation and full title together
PES / Pro Evolution Soccer: Many Pro Evolution Soccer games would have a full title (from the packaging) as PES XXXX: Pro Evolution Soccer. The names used on reference websites are usually not the same across the board on which way to name the item. Our community has voted that these games would use the title format of Pro Evolution Soccer XXXX.
Example: Pro Evolution Soccer 2008 and PES 2008 goes into Alt-Name.

The Hyphen and the Edition
For physical releases that have a special, limited or budget release outside of the standard game relesae, we put the Edition Name after the game name using a hyphen ( - ) symbol.

Re-release series: Greatest Hits, Classic NES Series
LittleBIGPlanet - Greatest Hits
Castlevania - Classic NES Series
Imperium III - FX
Jane's WWII Fighters - Classics

Examples of using actual vs common re-release names:
EA Classics = Console Classics. EA Classics is put into Alt-Name.

Classics = CD-ROM Classics

However, this formatting should not be used for items that have "edition" as part of the formal game title.

Disney Infinity 2.0 Edition
Pokémon Rubin-Edition

Edition re-release versus Edition game title
The original release for Fallout: New Vegas has a "regular" release and a Collector's Edition.
Fallout: New Vegas
Fallout: New Vegas - Collector's Edition

This game was then released a second time with a new title, as well as additional budget releases. In this case, the main release does not use the hyphen, while the budget releases do.
Fallout: New Vegas: Ultimate Edition
Fallout: New Vegas: Ultimate Edition - Greatest Hits
Fallout: New Vegas: Ultimate Edition - Platinum Hits

Do not use marketing names in the item title. Many items are sold online or advertised by publishers under an edition names such as "First Print Limited Edition" or "Launch Edition" and these can only be used in an item title if the text is present on the item itself.

Editions Names in non-Latin languages
There are multiple ways to handle this situation. For a Japanese Edition or Pack name, you should use the transliteration of the original Japanese text with exception for any words on the Japanese Loanwords List post further on in this guide.

Example: Eve Zero: The Ark of the Matter - Shokai Gentei Pack
Japanese pack name: 初回限定パック
Transliteration: Shokai Gentei Pakku - using the loanword guide the name we use is Shokai Gentei Pack.
The translation text (First Limited Pack) and online name (Perfect Edition) are put into alt-name.

For other non-latin languages besides Japanese, a translation should be used.

The The Situation
No item title should start with The, A or An. These words should be put at the end of the primary title (before subtitle) after a comma.

The Legend of Dragoon = Legend of Dragoon, The
The Legend of Dragoon - Greatest Hits = Legend of Dragoon, The - Greatest Hits

The above is also true for non-English languages that use Latin characters with few exception.
Die Schlümpfe = Schlümpfe, Die
Les Schtroumpfs = Schtroumpfs, Les
An exception to this is for French titles that start with L' due to it being a contraction.
L'Incroyable Hulk
As well as French titles starting with À due to it translating to at.
À la Croisée des Mondes: la Boussole D'Or

Non-English Latin titles
Many languages use latin characters but with symbols on them. A short list of the one you will usually see: àáäãâèéêíòóöùúüßñ
If these different types of letters appear on a game's packaging, they can be used in the Item Title.
You can reference the Non-English ASCII Codes post for additional information.

Example: Asterix and Astérix
Sometimes Asterix games will have an e and other times it will have an é.

Asterix at the Olympic Games vs Astérix aux Jeux Olympiques

Sometimes an item will use a symbol in its branding and sometimes it is a letter replacement. For item name, the representative letter should be used. In the case where a symbol is present and is not a letter replacement, it should be omitted.
Watch Dogs not Watch_Dogs.
Gal Gun: Double Peace not Gal☆Gun or Gal*Gun
Idolmaster, The not Idolm@ster.

Plus ( + ) symbol may be used only if it exists on the packaging.

Quotation Marks
Some game titles will use quotation marks in part of the title. Sometimes these quotes are in the actual title, and sometimes they are the result of a translation as found on a site in the Common Names list.
Currently, quotation marks in titles should be omitted.
Example: Backgainer: Yomigaeru Yuusha Tachi - Hishou-hen "Uragiri no Senjou" should be Backgainer: Yomigaeru Yuusha Tachi: Hishou-Hen Uragiri no Senjou. Name source: GameFAQs.

Logos as text replacements
Formula 1: When the official F1 logo is used as a text replacement, the item title should be Formula 1 and alternate renderings such as F1 or Formula One can be put into Alt-Name.
Example: Formula 1 04

James Bond 007: Then the 007 with gun logo is present, or used as a text replacement, the item title should use a James Bond 007 prefix to the game title.
Example: James Bond 007: Blood Stone

Asian items that have no common name source
There are many types of items that do not have a common name, such as bootleg games. Sometimes these are also items that have titles written fully in Japanese, Chinese or Korean. For items like this, the name can be a translation or romanisation of the title.
For example, many people will commonly refer to Chinese multicarts as "X in 1" even when this isn't the name of the item.
Super 110 Micro Memory Card may often be known as "110 in 1" but the text on the label is 超級 110 微記憶合卡. This title is put into alt-name and the item name is a translation. A romanisation would be "Chaoji 110 wei Jiyi he ka" and would be allowed in alt-name as well as "110 in 1" but it is not required. At the bare minimum, an item like this should have the actual text in the Alt-Name field. It is also important to use the exact characters that are present on the item, rather than the "correct" or "modern" character equivalents/replacements used by native speakers and/or translation programs.

Descriptors are used to differentiate similar releases where the result would be two items with the same name in a category.
Words used in the descriptor should only have the first letter capitalised (proper) if that word appears on the item itself. Descriptive terms that are not based on words on the item should be in lower case.
DO NOT use generic descriptors such as "variant" or "alternate"

If the difference is a label or special logo, partial or full text can be used.
Sword of Vermilion
Sword of Vermilion (Smoking)

If the difference is a publisher logo, the publisher name can be used.
Adventure Island (Electro Brain)
Adventure Island (Hudson Soft)

If the difference is a color, the name of the color can be used. The color is ony to be capitalised if the color is named on the item.
Strafe (yellow cover)
Strafe (red cover)

If multiple descriptors are required, as with items with multiple names, we use the forward slash ( / ) to separate them.
Legend of Zelda, The: Skyward Sword (25th Anniversay / Includes Zelda Music CD)
- has 25th Anniversary logo on front cover
- has "Includes Zelda Music CD" text on front cover

Community voted color exception
All titles that require a color descriptor, released in North America use the term gray vs regions outside North America which use the term grey.

If the difference is an item number, that can be used as a descriptor.
In this example, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 had 3 releases for PS3 in Japan.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (BLJM-60191)
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (BLJM-60269)
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (BLJM-61006)

If the difference is a cover, a short description can be used.
Retro City Rampage DX
Retro City Rampage DX (red car)
Retro City Rampage DX (red car / gold logo)

If the difference is disc or cart artwork, or cart type, a short description can be used.
Dragon Force (Astea disc)
Dragon Force (group disc)
Dragon Force (Red Dragon disc)
Dragon Force (Wein & Teiris disc)

Lunar Pool (3 screw cartridge)
Lunar Pool (5 screw cartridge)

Other common descriptors:
- cardboard box
- Not for Resale
- Promotional Copy
- Made in x
- Re-rated titles

The TLD is short for Top Level Domain and is a list of country abbreviations maintained by IANA. We use TLD for release countries because they are easily identifyable. Remember that the TLD is to represent which countries an item was SOLD in, not which languages are on the packaging.

A TLD is required in an item title only in order to avoid more than one item having the same name.

Categories have a default or presumed release country. For [EU] categories, items without TLD are presumed to be UK releases. The only time an item in an EU category would need to have [UK] in the title is if there is a general English European release of that item available. For older games, this is more common. The default release country for an [NA] category is US.
See here for a separate post in this thread regarding TLDs.

Platform specific release identification will be posted into the appropriate Style Guide thread.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2024, 12:02:05 pm by tripredacus »


Item Images
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2020, 10:14:07 am »
Item Images
There are three image slots for an item entry:
- Front art
- Back art
- Cart art

General image rules
Needs to be of the actual item, not an equivalent item from another country or fan-made.
Needs to be a .JPG or .JPEG only, and below 1 MB in size. Do not try to upload .GIF, .PNG or .WEBP images renamed to .JPG file extension.
Should be cropped to the edges of the focus of the picture
The site does not use the EXIF Orientation tag, so images should be aligned properly or have this tag disabled. Failure to do so will result in sideways or upside down images. Images like this submitted on edits will be rejects, Images found on created entries will be removed.
Cannot contain a watermark. (see bottom of this post for examples of watermarked images)
Cannot contain nudity.

using images from other sources
It is perfectly fine to use photos from other websites. Because the primary function of the site is to catalog physical items, the usage of images is covered under Fair Use.
To save yourself time having to take pictures yourself, you can look on these websites for listing images. (These are primary examples, not exhaustive)
GameFAQs (note that EU images are sometimes not the UK/English covers, or it may have UK front and French or Dutch back images)
PlayStation Datacenter

Front/Back art slot image type priority for physical items
We prioritize the best quality image for each slot, however if a better quality image is submitted that is a tier below the existing image (even if the existing image is poor or lesser quality) it will be rejected.
Image for front art should be of the front only, and not contain the spine.
Image for back art should be of the back only, and not contain the spine, or for a jewel case, cannot be a scan on the inlay.
Back art where the barcode is blanked out is not allowed.

1. Sealed
The number one determination as to whether an item needs a sealed photo is if the item has something unique about it that isn't present on a loose sample.
If such a difference is present, it should be noted in the item Description.
Fatal Rewind for Sega Genesis, in sealed form, has a starbust label on the front.

2. Not sealed but complete
Items that have multiple layers of packaging, should have the outer layer represented in the images. Front or back cover may have labels present.

Control (SteelBook) on PS4 has a SteelBook game case inside of a clear plastic slipcover.

Hellbender on PC has a jewel-case inside of a cardboard box, and a label on the front cover.

Transformers: Fall of Cybertron (9 out of 10 slipcover) on PlayStation 3 has a keepcase inside of a cardboard slipcase.

Le Bizzarre Avventure di JoJo on PlayStation has a square hologram on the front cover that has the Sony Interactive Entertainment logo

18 Wheeler: American Pro Trucker [ES] on PlayStation 2 has a square PlayStation hologram label on the back cover.

Bust-A-Move 4 [IT] on Dreamcast has a square SAIE label on the back cover.

Angel Present on Sega Saturn has the obi strip (spine card) shown on the front and back images.

3. Not sealed but missing labels and/or obi strip
It can be difficult to determine the difference between a scan, high quality photo and a stock photo that shows the correct front artwork. In addition, jewel case released games may have just the jewel case manual as the front artwork and the jewel case hinge is not visible. These are the type of images you typically will find on the websites listed at the top of this section, as their image contributions are typically scans and not photos.

4. Any picture of the physical item
For some items that are known to exist, photos of those items are not always common, or photos showing the packaging. In instances like this, we will accept low-quality images to merely show proof of existance. They should be replaced by a higher tier image in the future if possible. This is especially the case in regards to consoles and accessories.

18 Wheeler: American Pro Trucker - Dreamcast Collection has a label on the cover of sealed copies. This entry shows the label but is missing the obi strip.

Sony PlayStation 2 - Desi Adda: Games of India is a console pack released in India.

Quickjoy N-PRO SV-305 is a controller for NES.

5. Post release stock photo
Post release stock photos are retail mockups and may not necessarily match the actual product. Stock photos that do match the actual product can be substituted for any of the above picture types. In regards to modern games, these are typically going to have the correct content rating on the front and/or back covers. These images can be usually found on GameFAQs and online game store websites. Another hint to identify this type of picture is that developer/publisher logo locations are different than on the actual cover.

6. Pre-release stock photo
Pre-release stock photos are identified in most cases by having a temporary content rating. A game released in North America may have an ESRB RP rating, or a game released in Japan after 2006 may have a CERO 審査予定 (CERO All) rating.

Front/back art slot for Consoles and Accessories
In addition to the general rules above, there are some situations where the art can be different.

a loose game is a pack-in exclusive
6-Pak (Not for Resale) on Sega Genesis was a cartridge variation available as a console pack-in:

a loose accessory is a pack-in exclusive
Namco GunCon for PlayStation was a pack-in accessory for Time Crisis + GunCon.

Instances that do not apply because the entries are not permitted:
- Separate entry for a item that had a retail release, but was also available as a pack-in for a game, console or accessory
For example, the Sony DualShock 2 Analog Controller SCPH-10010 must have the retail packaging artwork because it was sold this way, despite that this controller was also available as a pack-in accessory.

Cart art slot for physical Games, Consoles and Accessories
The third art slot, referred to as "cart-art" or cart/disc/item, must be of game or item itself and not include additional items in the picture. For example, an add-on for a console should not also show the console. A game should show the cart, disk or disc image and not additional packaging. If there are multiple discs, they can be present. Discs should not be shown in the case, but on their own. Image quality rules prevail, we will allow a low quality image if being used as proof of existance.

Category specific art slot usage
Please refer to the individual category listing threads for these additional details.

Examples of watermarked images not allowed on item entries:

If you see any images that look like this, replace the artwork with an edit or report them in the Listing Errors thread for removal.

Images for items containing nudity
Even though our images are very small, images in the database cannot contain real or cartoon/CGI nudity. If an item box front or back has this type of imagery present, the image cannot be used. Do not modify images to add blurring or black bars. Leave these art slots blank. You can use the description to indicate that such nudity is present. Example:
« Last Edit: December 18, 2023, 10:17:15 am by tripredacus »


« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2020, 11:33:52 am »
The Alt-Name field is where we put additional search terms for an item.
Do not put TLD or TLD descriptors in Alt-Name.

Titles for releases in other regions
Often a game has a different name in one country and another in another country. You can put this other name here.
Final Fantasy II on SNES [NA] has "Final Fantasy IV" in alt-title, the name of the game as it was released in Japan.

Actual or spine titles
Some items will have a title printed on the packaging that is different than the Common Name or the original name.
Advanced Daisenryaku: Europe no Arashi: Deutsch Dengeki Sakusen has in the Alt-Name:
- The actual title in Japanese: アドバンスド大戦略~ヨーロッパの嵐・ドイツ電撃作戦~
- The English title that is shown on the box: Advanced Daisenryaku: Sturm über Europa: Der Deutsche Blitzkrieg

Some games have a spine title that does not match the Common Name.
Ayakashi Ninden Kunoichiban Plus has in the Alt-Name:
The English title as shown on the jewel case spine: AyakashiNinden Kunoichiban Puls

Some games have an actual title that does not match the Common Name.
.hack//Quarantine has in the Alt-Name:
The actual title from the cover: .hack Part 4: Quarantine: The Final Chapter

Some games have a company name in the logo design that does not match the Common Name.
Lion King, The has in the Alt-Name:
The corporate branded title: Disney's The Lion King

Additional box or media text
Additional terms present on the product to help with searching but not required in the item title.
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (Not for Resale) has in the Alt-Name:
The text from the media: Promo Only

Common terms
Some common titles for international releases do not use the common names for a series.
Kidou Senkan Nadesico: The Blank of Three Years on Sega Saturn [JP] has in the Alt-Title:
- The actual title in Japanese: 機動戦艦ナデシコ The blank of 3 years
- The name of the series outside of Japan: Martian Successor Nadesico

Some Editions have common names that are not present on the packaging.
Bulk Slash - SegaSaturn Collection has in the Alt-Name:
- The common name for this budget release series: Satakore

When to use non-latin titles
Any Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Arabic, etc game can have their localised name in Alt-Name.
No romanized names should be used.
Games released outside of those countries should not use the localised names, but just the common name.

Aero Dancing F on Sega Dreamcast [JP] has:
- The actual title in Japanese: エアロダンシングF
- The Western title: AeroWings 2: Airstrike
AeroWings 2: Airstrike on Sega Dreamcast [NA] has:
- The common name for the Japanese release: Aero Dancing F
In this example, the NA or EU release would not get the Japanese title of エアロダンシングF put into alt-name

Jang Pung 3 on Sega Mega Drive [KR] has:
- The actual title in Korean: 장풍3
- The actual title in Chinese: 掌風3
« Last Edit: November 04, 2021, 11:03:38 am by tripredacus »


Release Type
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2020, 10:46:36 am »
Release Type
There are five Relase Type options on an item.
The determination as to whether an item is an Official Release or another type is the context vs the category.

Items that fit into this option:
- any Demo or single episode or time limited version of a game that also had gotten a full version release
- any compilation of demo or trial games or software

The only items that should get this option are homebrew products that were not sold in the retail space.

What is not a homebrew
- fan translations
- hacks of existing games

Official Release
Items that fit into this option:
- any licensed game released for a console
- any licensed accessory or hardware for a console
- any game for a computer that is not a bootleg
- any hardware or accessory for a computer
- any licensed product that is in swag category
- any software on a digital platform

Official Release (Upcoming)
Items that fit into this option are the same as Official Release but are specifically for items that have been announced and will release in the future.

Unofficial Release
Items that fit into this option:
- any bootleg
- any unlicensed game released for a console that was sold at retail
- any unlicensed hardware or accessory for a console
- any hacks or fan translations

Unreleased (but official)
Items that fit into this option:
- prototype, alpha or beta versions of games or software that was not sold commercially
Items that should not use this option:
- games or items that are announced for future release, but have not yet been made available at retail or shipped to fulfill pre-orders.

Homebrew vs Unofficial Release
A homebrew that is released commercially for a console is considered to be an aftermarket or unofficial release in terms of the database. For a physical item, which is tracked in a physical game category, the context is for the item itself, not the data content.
Example: Pier Solar and the Great Architects (the game data) is a homebrew, but the products that contain the data is an Unofficial Release.

Demo vs Official Release vs Unreleased (but official)
Due to the fact that the database tracks products that were sold commercially but not into the retail market, a clarification is required.

Debug/Test consoles created by manufacturers for development purposes, while not sold in the retail market, are not "unreleased" as they were sold to development companies. An item like the Sony PlayStation 2 DTL-H30001 Debugging Station or TEST PS2 is an Official Release and not Unreleased (but official).

Similarly, a retail kiosk (while used by a retailer as a demo platform) is sold by the manufacturer to the retailer, and is considered an Official Release and not a Demo. An item like a Sony PlayStation Kiosk fits into this description.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2020, 10:48:10 am by tripredacus »


Developer and Publisher
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2020, 11:27:17 am »
Developer and Publisher
Developer and Publisher fields are created for game releases. The content that goes into these fields can be found on other websites, such as those listed above for "using images from other sources."

Because the original design of the database was primarily for games, non-game items do not use the Developer and Publisher fields the same way. Here is a quick list of non-game items and which fields are appropriate:
- Hardware and Accessories: Uses Developer field but Publisher should be blank
- Books, soundtracks and movies: Uses Publisher field but Developer should be blank
- Toys, interactive figures, cards, artwork, clothing, food swag items: both should be blank
« Last Edit: June 02, 2020, 11:32:20 am by tripredacus »


« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2020, 11:33:00 am »
We have a lot of platforms!

This is the category in which an item resides. It should all be self-explanatory, but there are some things we can say about it.

Games Released for multiple or co-branded platforms
There are some instances where a game release has multiple console branding or compatibilities listed. In these instances, the game should be put into the category for the older console. See here for a list of some console release dates to assist in choosing a category.

- Atari 2600 / 7800 co-compatibility: should go into the Atari 2600 category. See Venture
- PS One / PS2 co-branding: should go into the PlayStation category. See Kowai Shashin
- Xbox / Xbox 360 co-compatibility: should go into the Xbox category. See Sneak King
- Xbox 360 / Xbox One co-branding: should go into Xbox 360 category. See Bully - Scholarship Edition
- Xbox One / Xbox Series X co-branding: should go into Xbox One category. See Gears Tactics
- Xbox One branding with Xbox Series X compatibility note, should go into Xbox One category. See The Dark Pictures: Little Hope
- PS4 branding with PS5 compatibility note, should go into PS4 category. See Watch Dogs: Legion

Games Released in a Country with No Country Specific Category
Games and products are released all over the world and we do not have individual sub-categoriess for every one. So sometimes an item is put into the closest relevant category, at least temporarily. Here are some examples:

Releases in Asian or African countries can vary depending on the release. In general, for an item released in a country that has no dedicated sub-category, use this priority:
1. [CN] China
2. [JP] Japan
3. [HK] Hong Kong
Sangokushi Eiketsuden [HK] was released on the Sega Saturn in Hong Kong and is put into the Sega Saturn [JP] sub-category.
Sangokushi Eiketsuden [TW] was released on the Sega Saturn in Taiwan and is put into the Sega Saturn [JP] sub-category.
Flicky [KR] was released on the Samsung GamBoy in South Korea and is put into the Sega SG-1000 [JP] sub-category.
The Sims 2: Kitchen & Bath International Design Stuff [IN] was released for PC in India and is put into the PC [CN] sub-category.
Gran Turismo Sport - Day One Edition [SA] was released on PlayStation 4 in Saudi Arabia and is put into the PlayStation 4 [CN] sub-category.
FIFA 12 [SA][GR] was released on PlayStation 3 in (at least) Greece and Saudi Arabia and because Greece is in Europe, it is put into the PlayStation 3 [EU] sub-category.
Sega Rally 2: Sega Rally Championship - Xplosive was released on PC in Israel and is put into the PC [CN] sub-category.
FIFA Soccer 95 [AE] was released on Sega Mega Drive in United Arab Emirates and is put into the Sega Mega Drive [CN] sub-category.

New Zealand releases where no [NZ] sub-category exists should be put into the Australia [AU] category.
Example: Heavy Rain [NZ] on PlayStation 3.

South African Sega Mega Drive releases are European releases but with a label on the front cover. There is no South African category, so they are placed in the Sega Mega Drive [EU] sub-category.
Example: Sampras Tennis 96 [ZA] was released on the Sega Mega Drive.

Online Exclusive Releases
Physical games that are released outside of the normal retail channel and instead are sold exclusively through websites can be put in various categories. This is one of the most difficult type of item to track because the products are typically not region limited and are made available worldwide. In general, a game of this type should be put into the appropriate regional category that relates to the website that has exclusive distribution rights, or if it has a wider online release, then the developer and/or publisher's home country.

DUX on Sega Dreamcast is published by which is based in Germany, so their games are placed into the Dreamcast [EU] sub-category.

If the publisher has created different versions to match different regions, then these may be put in the category that the packaging design is meant to homage. As an example, JoshProd, an EU company, will release US, EU and JP editions of games that can be put into their respective  categories.
Example: 4x4 Jam with US design is in Dreamcast [NA], with EU design is in Dreamcast [EU] and with JP design is in Dreamcast [JP].

Bootlegs should be categorized based on the country in which they originate from. If this is not known, then they should be placed into one of the Asian categories, using this order:
1. [CN] China
2. [HK] Hong Kong
3. [TW] Taiwan
4. [JP] Japan

If the country of origin is known, but the item is put into a category that is for a different country, then it should be put into the description what country the item came from.

Games with Accessories or Accessories with Games
The community has decided that all accessories with games or games with accessories should be put into the appropriate games category for a platform. So it does not matter if the accessory or the game title has more prevalence on the box design, it will be considered a game.
Items of this nature that include download codes for games, but no physical games, are also to be put into the game category.

However, the item title is dependent on which has prevalence.
The naming rules for games with accessories are:
game name (accessory title)
The naming rules for accessories with games are:
Manufacturer Accessory name - Game Name

Console Accessories vs Hardware
Console add-ons such as the Sega CD or Gamecube Game Boy Player are considered accessories and not hardware.
Console add-ons of this type that include a game are considered games as outlined above
Sega 32X [US] is an accessory and is put into the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive Accessory category.
Sega 32X - Doom is an accessory with a game, so it is put into the Sega 32X [NA] games category. In addition, because the pack-in title for the Sega 32X - Doom is a Doom (Not for Resale) cartridge, the entry for the game cartridge itself is also put into the Sega 32X games category.

Console Accessories vs Games
Currently, the community has not decided whether the games categories should only have games or should also have software. As a result, non-game software releases may exist in either the game or accessory category. Examples of this are GameShark/Action Replay discs, Sega Saturn Photo CD Operator, Game Boy Player. We do not differentiate currently between standalone software, movies or software for hardware.

Mega Anser for Sega Mega Drive is banking software and is in a games category.
Photo CD Operator for Sega Saturn is a boot disc to allow for usage of Photo CDs and is in a games category.
Game Boy Player Start-up Disc is software for using the Game Boy Player on Gamecube and is in an accessory category.
Web Browser for Sega Dreamcast is a web browser and is in a games category.
NetLink Custom Web Browser for Sega Saturn is a web browser and is in an accessory category.

And then there are things like this:
Action Replay MAX+ Metal Edition is a memory card that includes a software CD-ROM but is put in an accessory category.

Until we determine how software is to be organized, be aware that they may exist in either a games or accessory category and be sure to search for them before adding new entries.

Pack-in Games from Accessories
As mentioned above in the Sega 32X - Doom example, the accessory pack entry is put into the relevant games category.
The pack-in game can also be put into the relevant game category but only if the pack-in is different from the retail release. Even if the pack-in item has no packaging, and is a cartridge only but the cart is the same as a retail release, it does not get a separate entry. If the pack-in games does have packaging, again it would only get a separate entry if the game packaging is different from the retail release.

Pack-in Games from Consoles
Consoles are considered hardware, whether they include a game or not. A console should never be put into a game or accessory category. The information above regarding pack-in games from accessories is the same for consoles.

Pack-in Games from Games or individual games from Multi-Packs
Pack-in games from games or individual games from multi-game packs are allowed to have a separate entry if the additional game has its own packaging. Loose games from games or multi-packs are not allowed a loose entry and are considered to be part of the whole entry.
Dead or Alive Ultimate was released as a box set that includes DOA1 and DOA2 in their own cases. These two games from within the game pack are allowed separate entries.
Half-Life Platinum Collection is a multipack that includes Half-Life, TFC, Opposing Force and Counter-Strike on individual discs with no unique packaging. Entries for these individual discs are not permitted.
Bayonetta 2 (Bonus Bayonetta Game Included) was released on Wii U and contains an additional disc for Bayonetta in the case. Since this additional disc does not have its own packaging, an entry for the individual disc is not permitted.

Pack-in Accessories from Games or Consoles
As outlined above, any accessory that includes a game is considered a game. Like the situation where a pack-in game can have its own entry in the game category, similarly the accessory can have an entry in the accessory category.

If the accessory was only available as a pack-in with a game or with a console, it can have an entry in the accessory category as a loose item. This means that the front art slot can be of the loose item.
However, if the accessory was also sold separately in retail packaging, the loose accessory entry is not allowed. This includes both controllers and memory cards.

Typing of the Dead Keyboard Set for Sega Dreamcast is a game with an accessory and is in the game category. It includes the regular large white Sega Dreamcast Keyboard. Since this keyboard had its own stand-alone retail release, a loose entry of the keyboard is not created.

Pack-in Items That are Not Games or Accessories
Often there are special edition releases of games that include bonus pack-in items that are not games or accessories. These may include pins, movies, t-shirts, posters, statues, toys, soundtracks, etc. These items can be added to the database as loose items and they are typically put into the swag category.
Surging Aura was released on Sega Mega Drive in Japan and includes a limited edition pin. Mega RPG Project pin badge - Surging Aura is put into the Swag - Clothing Items category.

Bundled Items from Online Orders or Pre-Orders
For games that are sold online and include additional bonus items, but are not packaged with the game itself, the items included can have separate entries typically created in the appropriate Merchandise category. There should not be an entry created for the game + the additional items, rather the game should have in the description that the additional items were shipped together when ordered from x website or retailer.

If the additional item is a SteelBook, it can be created in the console's accessory category if the SteelBook is a console exclusive. If the SteelBook is not a console exclusive, it can be put into the Steelbook Merchandise category.

Built-in Games and Software
Built-in games for a console should not get a separate entry. Examples of this would be Snail Maze for Sega Master System, which is a game you can play on some consoles without inserting a cartridge. This game is considered part of the SMS and should be put into the description of the appropriate SMS console release entries.

Likewise, any built-in games or software on modern consoles that have online store platforms should not have a separate entry created.
Examples of this would be built-in apps that come pre-installed on the Nintendo 3DS and are not downloadable from the platform store, such as Nintendo Zone, Face Raiders, Mii Plaza or the eShop itself. Non-game apps are currently allowed to have entries, such as YouTube.

Where to put an item that has no category
There are generic categories for:
- Other Accessories
- Other Consoles
- Other Games
- Merchandise Miscellaneous

In the Other category for games, names should be formatted as:
Manufacturer ConsoleName - GameTitle
« Last Edit: May 17, 2023, 10:27:59 am by tripredacus »


« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2020, 10:23:09 am »
Currently we can only put 1 genre on an item.
Genre resources can be found on other websites such as GameFAQs, Mobygames, etc.

Some games have hard to determine genres or can have multiple genres. You'll have to pick one.

If there is a genre missing, you can request it be added in the Category Requests thread.

Only games entries should have a genre set. Hardware, Accessories or swag items should not have a genre selected.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2020, 10:26:35 am by tripredacus »


« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2020, 10:26:52 am »
Ratings are the age ratings for products, primarily games.
We currently only allow for one rating to be selected.

Ratings are for the actual physical item itself and not the game content. There are situations where a game was originally release without a rating, or with an older rating in physical form, and then re-released later as either a physical item or a digital game. In these cases, we do not put the newer version's rating on the older item.

Physical Items: rating should be set if a rating exists on the item.

Digital Items: rating should be set as reflected on the localised digital platform. Note that the rating may be different based on where the platform is viewed from. A German portal into a European platform may show USK ratings instead of PEGI. For NA platforms, always use ESRB. For EU, use PEGI and for Japan use CERO. For categories where there is no regional separation (such as PC Digital Downloads) use ESRB if applicable.

We currently have options for:
- ACB (Australia)
- aDeSe (Spain)
- CERO (Japan)
- ClassInd (Brazil)
- ELSPA (Europe)
- ESRB (USA/Canada/Mexico)
- GRAC (South Korea)
- GSRR (Taiwan)
- PEGI (Europe)
- RARS (Russia)
- SELL (France)
- SMECCV (Mexico)
- USK (Germany)
See Metshael's Rating List thread for how to identify the different ratings that are seen around the world.

Items without Ratings
If an item has no rating on the packaging or on the media, leave as default NA or choose None.

Items with Multiple Ratings
Sometimes a product is sold in multiple countries or multiple regions and can have multiple ratings. You have to choose one rating to use, and it should be based on where the item was released. Additional ratings besides the one selected can be put into the description field.

Aegis of Earth: Protonovus Assault on PS3 was released in Europe with both PEGI and USK ratings. Because this is not a German-exclusive release, the rating is PEGI - 7.

Baten Kaitos: Die Schwingen der Ewigkeit und der verlorene Ozean on GameCube was released in Germany and it has both PEGI 12 and USK 6 ratings on the packaging. Because it is the German release, USK 6 is the rating on the entry.

Army of Two - Platinum on PS3 was released in Europe with PEGI 18 on the front and back of the case, but with ACB MA 15+ and BBFC 18 on the disc. The rating is PEGI 18.

Because EU and AU both use PAL, it will be common to find EU items with ACB ratings present or Australian items imported from Europe with ACB rating labels over the originals.

Items with Different Ratings on the box and the game but from the same rating agency
There are some situations where a rating was changed on a release, and only the packaging was changed.
For each entry, the rating is the one shown on the box.

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (ESRB AO) on Xbox had a release where ESRB AO labels were put on the front and back of the case covering the ESRB M ratings that are printed on the insert. The DVD-ROM inside retains the originally printed ESRB M rating as well. In this case, the rating on the entry is the one from the label, and not the one from the media.

Consoles, books and other non-game items
Although the rating is only for the game that the item is representing, if a rating logo is present on an item then the rating field should be used.
For consoles, often there is a rating label present to reflect the content of any demo disc that is included, even if that demo disc doesn't have a rating on itself. Basically, if there is a rating on the item, put it on the entry.
« Last Edit: May 26, 2023, 11:15:23 am by tripredacus »


Item Number
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2020, 11:20:29 am »
Item Number
The item number is for an identifying number that exists on the packaging.
It should be enters as it appears with exception to Sony item numbers which must follow this format: XXXX-NNNNN, using the hyphen even if it is not present.

Adventures of Mighty Max, The (VRC) has on the spine T-164056 and this is put into item number.

Items with multiple numbers
The priority list of which number is added to the item number field in the DB is:
1. The spine or side
2. The back
3. The front
4. The media
5. Hidden or only on sealed samples
Additional item numbers should be put into the description.

Transformers: Devastation (reviews) has on the spine 2100359 and this is put into Item number. The item numbers on the back cover, the disc and the ad flyer are put into Description.

SimCity Societies has on the back of the box, at the end of the copyright text (this is where the publisher item number is for most EA titles) is 1574511 and this is put into the item number field. The item numbers of the instruction manual and the DVD is put into description.

Roger Clemens' MVP Baseball on the Game Boy has on the box DMG P VM, and this is put into item number. The item number on the cart (DMG-VM-USA) is put into the description field.

Items with multiple item numbers on the spine
At some point during the PS2 lifecycle, Sony had transitioned away from using their regular alpha-numeric item number on the spine to a different set of numbers. The transitional releases have both of these numbers. In this case, we will use the Sony item number.
Headhunter: Redemption on PS2 is an example where the old and new item numbers appear on the spine. We put the Sony item number SLES-52511 into the Item Number field and put the other item number 4763016 into the Description.

Ys Origin (Yunica / Hugo faces cover) on PS4 has on the spine 21003140 and this is put into the item number field. In addition, there is a publisher item number of LR-P49 which is put into Description.

Items with multiple item numbers on the back
Some games have multiple item numbers such as GameCube, and each item number represents a different thing.
For example, Crazy Taxi on Gamecube in Europe all have the same item number that Nintendo uses to represent the content: DOL P GCTP. Because of this, it is not a good number to use on entries.
The UK release has Nintendo number specific to the UK version, and we use that on the entry. It is DOL-GCTP-UKV. The German release uses DOL-GCTP-NOE.

The other numbers are put into description.

Items with Hidden Item Numbers
In the previous example we had shown how Nintendo has a number to represent the game, and another to represent the release. On older boxed releases this is the same but the item numbers are printed on the box tab/flap. Because it is impossible to see this number on a sealed sample, we put this into the description instead.

The Magical Quest Starring Mickey Mouse on Super Nintendo has a back item number of SNS P MI, which is the number on the entry. The box flap and the cart have an item number of SNS-MI-USA and this is put in description.

Item Numbers that only appear on Sealed Samples
There are some items that have their proper item number only on the outer seal. Currently, we put these numbers into the description field.
Halo: Combat Evolved - Game of the Year! has on the spine: F78 00002, on the back: 0204 Part No. X10-43982 and on the COA label: X08-22009. The number under the barcode (99991-x-x-x) should not be put into description but you can add it to the notes field when you add the item to collection.
Xbox COA labels are always present on sealed samples and rarely present on loose samples.

ISBN is an additional number that can be found on books and some video games.
If an item has an ISBN number it should go into description unless:
- item has no UPC/EAN/JAN, then the ISBN can be put into barcode field.
- item is a book in the Swag Print Media sub-cat, then the ISBN can be put into the item number field.
If an item has multiple ISBN and one is used in a field other than description, put into description both of the ISBN numbers, their type and location.

Example item link needed for ISBN in item number field
Example item link needed for ISBN in barcode field

Amazon ASIN
Amazon ASIN (the item numbers found on Amazon's website) should only be used on an entry if the item itself has no item number, and the item is an Amazon Exclusive.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2024, 10:23:02 am by tripredacus »


« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2020, 10:18:16 am »
The barcode field should only be filled in if a barcode exists on the physical item. It should be entered as numbers only, without spaces or other symbols.
If the item does not have a barcode, leave this field blank. Do not put in NA or None.

UPC-A 12 digits
Black on PS2 in the US.

How to type it: 014633151053

EAN-13 13 digits
Super Space Invaders on Master System in Europe.

How to type it: 5022231210435

JAN 13 digits
Same as EAN-13, some older JAN barcodes have a T prefix, but this is omitted from the barcode field.
Famista '91 on Famicom.

How to type it: 4907892000728

EAN-5 13 digits
Type of barcode used on books and magazines that have the cover price represented as a separate 5 digit barcode. The EAN-5 is not put into the barcode field, just the EAN-13.
Art of Halo, The: Creating A Virtual World

How to type it: 9780345475862

Barcodes in Brazil with extra digit
Some barcodes in Brazil, up to 1998, have an extra digit above the EAN. This digit matches the last digit of the Modelo number on TecToy releases. We omit this extra digit.
Command & Conquer: Red Alert

How to type it: 7891196503375

Barcodes Missing Digits
Some items from the 1980s use a UPC-A missing the number system or check digit. As a result, a barcode like this has 10 digits instead of 12.

How to type it: 4787546008
In the Description, you can put in how the barcodes scans, for this example a barcode scanner reads this as 047875460089.
Example: River Raid (Activision) for ZX Spectrum.

2 barcodes
Some items have more than one barcode, this is typically seen on books.

Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles - The Official Nintendo Player's Guide has 2 barcodes.
The one on the left is the ISBN-13 + EAN-5, the one on the right is the UPC-A. We would put the UPC-A into the barcode field. The ISBN-10 and ISBN-13 + EAN-5 would be put into description.

Invalid barcodes
Sometimes an item will have an invalid barcode. Even in these situations, we will still put that information in the barcode field but only if it is all numbers.

NHL 13 (Not for Resale) [CA] on PS3.
How to type it: 000000000000

If an item has an invalid barcode that containts text or text and numbers, leave the barcode field blank.

Sticker Barcodes and Blank Barcode Locations
There are multiple instances where a sticker barcode is used. Some examples:
1. Packaging created for multiple regions may have no barcode on the packaging, or have a blank space where a barcode label can be placed. In some cases, used copy of a game may no longer have the label present. Types of releases with this situation: some Electronic Arts releases for Sega Genesis/Mega Drive, some Australian releases, many releases for microcomputers. Most times the barcode label is affixed to the item itself, but there are certain instances where the label is put on the outer shrinkwrap of a game, meaning an un-sealed copy would never have the barcode label present.
2. In the 1990s, it was common for some items to get a second or third run, as a re-release but using the original packaging. Or a publisher purchased old-stock of a product and resold it later. Items like this can have a barcode label over the old barcode. This is most common with CD-ROM jewel case releases, although it can happen with other products such as movies. We currently do not count these as variations and they should not get separate entries. If you wand to track this type of information, you can use the notes field when adding an item into your collection.

Import Label Barcodes
Similar to above, there are situations where an item is imported and has a different barcode on a label. Army Men: Sarge's Heroes was released in Portugal for Sega Dreamcast. It is the same release as the UK version but has a new label from Ecofilmes with a barcode on it. This is the barcode to be used on the entry. The original barcode is covered by the IGAC label and that barcode can be put into description.

other GTINs or barcodes
There are many other types of barcodes that you can find on packaging, including QR Code, 2D Matrix, Datamatrix, Aztec and Maxicode. Our database is currently not set up to handle these types of barcodes. If you have any ideas or suggestions on how to handle these types of codes, you can create a topic in the Site Feedback section of the forum.
You can find information about these types of GTINs here:
« Last Edit: June 13, 2023, 11:05:27 am by tripredacus »


Release Date
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2020, 11:25:09 am »
Release Date
Release date is the day of official release. This can be found on many websites, but our main sources such as GameFAQs and mobygames should be the first place to look.

Release Date for re-releases
A game that has a re-release, either an additional printing or a budget release such as Greatest Hits, should have the release date of that particular release and NOT the release date of the original version.

Release Date for upcoming products
Items that are announced but have not yet been released, should have a release date set for when the product has been officially been announced to be available at retail or to be shipped. Do not use the pre-order start date. If the exact release date is unknown, but the year is know, you can put in the year. If the exactly release date is unknown in total, do not set this field.

Release Date for digital games
For digital releases that are re-releases, they should have the release date of the digital version and not the original. It can sometimes be difficult to find the correct release date and may require additional research. If you cannot find when the digital release date was, do not set a date. Be aware that some of the digital storefronts will show a release date of the original release, and not the version that being made available.

Ultimate Doom, The on Steam was released on August 3, 2007.
The original version was released on April 30, 1995, which is the release date as shown on the Steam page:
The original release date can be found on another website, such as Wikipedia:
« Last Edit: June 26, 2020, 12:00:41 pm by tripredacus »


« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2020, 11:31:39 am »
The description field is to list a physical description of an item, such as: what is contained in the packaging, additional item numbers, clarification of variation, item name descriptor details or release country if a TLD is not required in the item title.
For a digital game, it is for compatibilities or release information only. The data input should be concise and not wordy.
"Description" from other websites such as stores or online platforms are not valid for use here.

Information Duplication and Things to Avoid
Information that exists on the entry in another field should not also be put into description. Examples:
- do not refer to the item by its title, as this is present in the Item Name
- do not refer to an item as a physical game, if the item is present in a physical game category.
- do not refer to the publisher or developer
- do not refer to the release date.

Be sure to avoid the following:
- opinion-based adjectives
- marketing terms
- rarity or secondary market value information
- referencing other items in a release series or where a variation is present

The general layout of description is as follows, with sections in []. You do not actually type the [section] string into the field, it is presented here as a placeholder. The text filled out below in blue

[physical descriptions]
label on cover
front/back cover text: "x"
box printed in x
Not for Resale label on cart
box/manual printed in x language

• cart item number x (Made in x)
• Instruction Booklet item number x (Printed in x)
• registration card

[compatibility information]
Forwards compatible on Xbox 360

[game data includes]
splash screen title
audio language
subtitle language

Released in country
store exclusive
distributed by company
sold online as "x"

For each "Includes" line, the item should have the actual name. You can also put the item number or Made In information.
If there are additional things to note about an includes item, put that information in the [physical description] section.

Use the term "item number" instead of other terms such as ID or identifier as this is the term used on the entry form for the primary item as well as the term used in the database itself.

The "Made/Printed In" information is not required and only needs to be notated for variations.

Include information relevant to the packaging or its contents.
Doukyuusei 2 for Sega Saturn lists out everything that is included in the jewel case, including that the obi strip has a unique item number.

Transformers: Fall of Cybertron for PS3 has all of the additional item numbers including on what parts they are found.

Ms. Pac-Man (cardboard, Mexico) for Sega Genesis has information that includes what is included in the box as well as information relating to this specific variant:
- what kind of packaging
- text on the front of the box and the cart
- particulars regarding the cart label
- the copyright stamping on the cart
- the type of manual
The same type of information is present for the variant of this, Ms. Pac-Man (cardboard, USA).

compatibility info
Gauntlet: Dark Legacy for Xbox has that it is not supported by Xbox 360 backwards compatibility.

exclusivity info
Scribblenauts Unlimited (Bonus!) has in the description that this release is a Gamestop Exclusive.

Hardware has the same type of description as games, where the contents of the packaging are listed.

Sony PlayStation 2 SCPH-30000 has in the description:
- The official color of the console: Black
- where it was released: Released in Japan
The release country is allowed here because there is no TLD in the Item Name, nor is it required because all SCPH-XXXX0 models were released in Japan.

Sony PlayStation PSone SCPH-141 has in the description all of the parts that were included in the box and their model/item numbers.

If the accessory has its own packaging, the contents of the packaging should be listed. Compatibility information can be put if the accessory is designed specifically to use a certain connection, game, console version, etc. If the accessory is a loose item, you have to include what other releases the item can be found in.

Sega Control Pad (red letters) [EU] for Sega Mega Drive has in the description the details about the Control Pad. Such as what color the start button is, text that is present and the colors around the D-Pad and the buttons.

Sega Genesis Speakers for Sega Genesis has in the description that the product was designed to connect to the headphone jack of the Model 1 Sega Genesis console.

Sega Game Toshokan for Sega Mega Drive in Japan has in the description the function of the device. In this case, that the device connected to the now-defunct Sega Meganet service.

Sega CD MK-1690 is the Model 1 Sega CD add-on for the Sega Genesis, and it was included in the Sega CD - Sherlock Holmes: Consulting Detective pack. Because the Sega CD is an accessory, not a console, and that pack includes a game, the entry for the pack is in the Sega CD [NA] games category. This accessory is allowed to have an entry for the unit itself, and in the description it states what pack it was found in.

Sega Auto RF Switchbox is an example of a product that was included with a boxed console as well as being sold in its own individual retail box. It is noted in the description that it was included with some Sega Mega Drive and Genesis consoles.

Pack-in Items

Altered Beast on Sega Genesis is an example of a game that was also available as a pack-in item, in whole, for some releases of the Sega Genesis console. In this instance, the game is the same as the retail game, as no special version was made as the pack-in item.

Namco GunCon (black, no High Vision TV) for Sony PlayStation is an example of an accessory that was sold individually, as well as being included as a pack-in with a game. It is noted in the description that the GunCon was also available with Time Crisis in Japan. Because the black GunCon had a stand-alone retail release, it does not get a loose accessory entry.

Digital Games
The description for digital games should be limited to compatibility and release information. For example, you can put into description if the game had been renamed over time, or if the game is no longer available on the platform store.

In the case of digital games in PC Digital Downloads category, description must be used to indicate where the game was available from. Failure to include this information may result in an entry in this category getting merged with Steam or GOG entries, or outright deleted.

Trade Symbols
The use of trade symbols are typically not to be used in the Description unless they are being used to document a variation.

Super Hydlide (©1990 cover) is a variation that uses the copyright symbol (©) on the cover, and this symbol can be used in the title as a descriptor, and in the description to describe the variation. This information is absent from the other release of Super Hydlide.

Another example is Sega Master System games which had registered trademark variations for boxes and cartridges. In this example of Cyborg Hunter (Sega®) the ® symbol is in the item title but is written out in the description.

Also on Sega Master System, the use of ® (registered trademark) vs ℠ (service mark) symbols are present in the Item Name and Description with these two: Pro Wrestling (No Limits℠) and Pro Wrestling (No Limits®).
« Last Edit: February 29, 2024, 10:57:32 am by tripredacus »


Box Text
« Reply #13 on: June 11, 2020, 11:31:53 am »
Box Text
The text on the box! It should be typed in as it appears
You can use the bullet ( • ) where appropriate, and can also type in foreign languages including Japanese or Korean if present.
Do not use notes to indicate where the text is present, such as "front" or "image captions."

Valid areas for box text:
- box back
- image captions
- bullet lists
- label text

trade symbols
In general, you should not use trade symbols such as ®, ©, ℠ or ™ in the Box Text.
The only times that this should be used is when a variation is present and these types of symbols are part of the variation.

physical items in retail packaging
Include the text from the back of the box.
For items with multiple languages, it is not required for box text to include all languages, especially if you do not know how to type in those other languages. Someone else can come along to fill out the rest. For example, if you have a multi-language EU game, but you only know English, it is ok to just put in the English text.

partial box back
Super Space Invaders for Sega Master System in Europe has a box back in 8 languages. While we would prefer that each of the additional paragraphs were added, it is valid to have this partial box text where just the English paragraph is filled in.

full multi-language box back
After Burner (No Limits) for Sega Master System in Europe is an example where 5 different languages appear on the box back, and each is filled out. When typing in other languages, make sure to use the characters as represented on the box. For example, use é instead of e if the box is using e with an accent.
If you do not know how to type these characters, do not fill out that portion.

front box text
Transformers: Devastation (reviews) on PS4 has a release where there is a red block on the front with review text. This entry has the text from the front put into box text.

label text example
Castles II: Siege & Conquest (CD) has the text from the label on the box front put into box text.

English on Japanese box
Kekkon Zenya is an example where English text is present on a Japanese release. In this instance, the text is on the front and is put into the box text.

partial Japanese box text
Eve Zero: The Ark of the Matter - First Limited Pack is an example used previously in the Item Name post. Here the partial text that represents the pack name, from the front cover, is put into Box Text.

Full Japanese box text
Tetris on Famicom in Japan is an example where the full box text, as it appears, is put into the box text field.

When transcribing foreign languages such as Japanese or Korean, verify that the symbols are correct. Be aware that translation apps like Google may attempt to correct the symbols used. The text should be exactly as it appears on the item.

Do not type English or other translations into box text for items that are not in English.
Do not put "descriptions" from other websites into box text.

physical items without retail packaging
Some items do not have packaging because they are parts of a set (such as pack-in accessories) or are sold in such a way to not have packaging. In these cases, box text should not be used.

For items with a tag, such as a stuffed animal or clothing, the box text can be any text on the tag.

Copyright and Legal Text
In most cases, copyright or legal text portions on products should not be entered into box text. The only exceptions would be when a variation is present and this type of text is part of the variation. If this is the case, trade symbols may be used in this portion only.

Digital Items
Digital items should use 1-2 paragraphs from the "description" or summary text as shown on the platform for the game. It should not include all text. The text used should not be the text from a specific platform's public facing website as viewed on a computer or other device using a web browser.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2020, 10:16:05 am by tripredacus »


TLDs and Import Labels
« Reply #14 on: July 02, 2020, 09:55:19 am »
What we refer to as TLD, is short for ccTLD (country code Top Level Domain) is a standardized format used to represent countries around the world. These are two character abbreviations for country names, and this format was chosen due to its prevalence online in the domain names of other countries. Feedback on TLDs can be posted in this thread in the VGDB forum.

Here is a list of the common TLDs you can find used in the database:

[AE] United Arab Emirates
[AT] Austria
[AU] Australia
[BE] Belgium
[BR] Brazil
[CA] Canada
[CH] Switzerland
[CN] China
[CZ] Czech Republic
[DE] Germany
[DK] Denmark
[EU] Europe
[ES] Spain
[FI] Finland
[FR] France
[GR] Greece
[IL] Israel
[IN] India
[IT] Italy
[JP] Japan
[KR] South Korea
[MX] Mexico
[MY] Malaysia
[NL] Netherlands
[NO] Norway
[PL] Poland
[PT] Portugal
[RU] Russia
[SA] Saudi Arabia
[SE] Sweden
[SG] Singapore
[SK] Slovakia
[TH] Thailand
[TR] Turkey
[TW] Taiwan
[UK] England/Great Britain/United Kingdom
[US] United States
[ZA] South Africa

Multiple TLDs
Sometimes there are situations where multiple TLDs are used in an item title. The order in which they are present does not matter. Some users prefer to put them in alphabetical order, some use the order in which the relative languages appear on the box text, some use the order of the flags shown on the packaging. What is important is that they are present and correct.

Country Specific Markings
As noted in the Item Name post above, the TLD is to reference where the item was sold and not what languages are present on the packaging. This can be confusing at times because you can find games with French text that are not sold in France, Italian that is not sold in Italy or German that is not sold in Germany. Each country has some sort of labelling requirement for media products, and we can use this to help identify what countries items are actually released in.

Article 3 of the Décret n°96-360 du 23 avril 1996 relatif aux mises en garde concernant les jeux vidéo ruling declared that all video games sold in France must contain a warning in white characters on a red label or an insert of the same color provided on the printed packaging. The actual text is Attention : chez certaines personnes, l'utilisation de ce jeu nécessite des précautions d'emploi particulières qui sont détaillées dans la notice jointe and the label looks like this:

The presence of the ATTENTION text is a requirement for an item to be sold in France, but this text may appear on items not sold in France as well. You should be aware that any game released after 1996 with French text on the packaging but lacking this text is likely NOT a game sold in France, and should not have the [FR] TLD put into the name. Items like this are typically sold in Belgium or other French speaking countries.

This is another example where a language can appear on an item not sold in the primary country where it is spoken. In this case, all German releases after 1994 should have a USK rating label present on the packaging. Any release with German text but without a USK rating is typically going to be something released in Austria.

Import Labels
Some countries will import a game from another region and just put an import or declaration label on the packaging. Sometimes this label is only on the outer shrinkwrap of sealed copies, sometimes it is on the box or case itself. Items like this can be added to the database using the appropriate TLD.

Media released in Italy after 1926 is required to have an SIAE (Società Italiana degli Autori ed Editori) marking present. This applies to (at least) music and video games. While this requirement is like the French requirement, unlike the Attention marking, the SIAE is an actual label. Here are the common examples of the paper label and the hologram version:

Here is an SIAE import label that can be found on some Dreamcast releases:

There are instances where this label is only present on the outside shrinkwrap of a sealed item and thus is not found on loose samples. Other times this will be common to find on either the front or back cover of an item. For situations where there exists a version with and without this label, two entries can be created. One common example is the presence of games with Spanish and Italian text, where the releases are identical with the exception that the one released in Italy has the label and the one released in Spain does not.
You can read more about SIAE labeling here.

Another way to identify Italian specific releases is the presence of an HX Halifax or Halifax Italia label on the front cover.

In the Barcode post before, we outlined an import release of Army Men's Sarge's Heroes. This is also a good example of a game that is imported from another country and a label is present. In this particular situation, in addition to the Ecofilmes label with the barcode, there is an IGAC import label present.

Another type of way to identify Portugal releases of Sega games is the presence of the Sega Garantia Portugal label.

TLD Combinations to avoid
TLD combinations that should garner a second look, and will draw the attention of other users to verify entries are correct are:
- [FR][NL]: In most instances, these items are either [NL] or [BE][NL] and not released in France.
- [DE][FR][IT][NL]: France, Germany and Italy media requirements typically rule out this scenario. These are usually [NL] or just [EU] releases.
- [UK] by itself: an item only should have [UK] TLD if an English EU release exists in the same category.
- [UK] with any combination of other EU TLDs: same reasoning above.
- [AS]: other websites use this to represent Asia but it is actually American Samoa.

The European rules and examples outlined in this post are generally correct concerning releases newer than the year 2000. 1980s and 1990s releases, from both Nintendo and Sega, did end up having different types of distribution. Where there were multiple UK+ releases for Sega Dreamcast, or the existance of [FR][NL] games on SNES, or the fact that most English language NES and Game Boy games were German releases. Both Sega and Nintendo used country codes on their packaging. Sega uses a -number system, and Nintendo used a country code system as well as colored triangle labels.

Nintendo Country Codes
This is an "in general" list of code conversions. It is based on the Nintendo of Europe coloured triangles page on

UKV = [UK]
UXP = English EU
NOE = [DE]
FRA = [FR]
FAH = [FR][NL]
HOL = [NL]
ESP = [ES]
ITA = [IT]
SCN = [DK][FI][NO][SE]
AUS = [AU]

Sega Region Codes
These codes can be found on Sega Retro.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2021, 10:05:20 am by tripredacus »