Author Topic: Use of (optional) hyphens in item sdescs.  (Read 2773 times)

Mook

  • Posts: 237
Use of (optional) hyphens in item sdescs.
« on: March 21, 2015, 02:02:14 PM »
I'm asking this question largely for mastercrafting reasons.
What do people think of the use of hyphens in non-ambiguous compound adjectives.  Do people prefer the Associated Press style of not using unnecessary hyphens, or do people want hyphens in all their compound adjectives?

Examples of hyphen-use inconsistencies copy-pasted from the game:
You can wear a set of scrab-shell greaves with a scrab shell wristguard.  (Hyphenated and not hyphenated in that manner in-game).
You can wear a carru-leather jacket with carru leather sleeves.
You can wear a gurth shell collar or a fanged, inix-shell gorget.
You can wear a hooded, earthy brown sandcloth jerkin with a pair of dark-brown, flame-beaded moccasins.

Many style guides suggest that hyphens should be used sparingly, and should not be used when they aren't necessary.  Other guides demand that a hyphen must always be used for any compound adjective.  What do you all think?
Murder your darlings.

Bushranger

  • Posts: 1788
Re: Use of (optional) hyphens in item sdescs.
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2015, 02:39:14 PM »
This is a game world built by many people from around the world. Describe your objects the way you feel comfortable :)

Basically you use your style guide and I'll use mine. Color is colour and all that. Let's try not to standardize too much or we'll end up with spelling wars and grammar crusades.
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James de Monet

  • Posts: 3252
Re: Use of (optional) hyphens in item sdescs.
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2015, 02:42:47 PM »
Yeah. I say do what seems natural, but follow what has already been done in game, where feasible. It bugs me to see both, sometimes, but if there is only one example, I don't really care which guide they followed.
You know I think if James simply retitled his thread "Cheese" and apologized for his first post being off-topic, all problems would be solved.

solera

  • Posts: 1759
Re: Use of (optional) hyphens in item sdescs.
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2015, 04:39:48 PM »
I think style guides come second after clarity of meaning and aesthetics. (Is that sentence itself grammatically correct?)  :-\
I had thought that hyphens were wrong, but seeing them used in game has given me the confidence to use them within emotes and elsewhere.

valeria

  • Posts: 5555
    • I have a writing blog.
Re: Use of (optional) hyphens in item sdescs.
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2015, 02:26:49 AM »
Use hyphens unless both adjectives independently describe the item.  It does make a difference in meaning.   So with 'gurth shell helmet' the helmet is both gurth and shell, but with gurth-shell helmet the helmet is shell and the type of shell is gurth.

As someone who does grammar for a living, I care, but not excessively.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2015, 12:08:57 PM by valeria »

Barzalene

  • Posts: 7736
Re: Use of (optional) hyphens in item sdescs.
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2015, 11:09:41 AM »
I don't like those hyphens, but I use them, because Arm brainwashed me. Sadly, if my braid worked better, instead of internalizing the superfluous hyphen I'd have leaned where the commas go, but it's not.
Varak:You tell the mangy, pointy-eared gortok, in sirihish: "What, girl? You say the sorceror-king has fallen down the well?"
Ghardoan:A pitiful voice rises from the well below, "I've fallen and I can't get up..."

Mook

  • Posts: 237
Re: Use of (optional) hyphens in item sdescs.
« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2015, 07:04:37 PM »
Ugh, too many unnecessary commas.  Keel them.
Murder your darlings.

Cavaticus

  • Posts: 966
Re: Use of (optional) hyphens in item sdescs.
« Reply #7 on: March 23, 2015, 12:32:19 AM »
We don't have an internal style guide, so your MC item is likely going to conform to the personal style choices of whichever staff member is editing/approving your item.