Forum:Icons vs. Text
In templates, infoboxes, and other non-article areas, the wiki mostly uses linked text for subjects which have an established in-game icon. For example, Ring slot vs. .
I would like to advocate that we move towards using textless icons with links as the default, as this reduces visual clutter and, importantly, template width, which is important for mobile viewing. If it could be reasonably implemented, I think that a template which provides the option between text or icons, a la Template:FloorNumber, would be the ideal solution.
Comment - My impression is that it is less clear for new players (and even some older players) what icons mean. Clutter for one person is clarity for others in some cases. That said, I think there are cases where the tradeoff is worth it, like fitting monster stats into the infobox on goblin or fitting dragon spear stats into infobox bonuses. If there are instances on mobile or desktop where a navbox or infobox is particularly bad, we should take a look at it. Could you give some examples of templates that cause visual problems on mobile? I suspect that the general answer is to modify the template instead of replacing text with images. - Andmcadams (talk) 22:52, 5 April 2022 (UTC)
Oppose - Making information ambiguous is bad, and most of the time I think that's what replacing text with icons does.23:07, 5 April 2022 (UTC)
Oppose - While its possible for it to work well, generally speaking I do not prefer this. I think User:Nex Undique put it well on Forum:Message box minimizing, which I will paraphrase and add in things relevant to this thread. New players might not know the symbols so they simply won't know what we are referring to. With hover text, it's not possible for mobile, and they might not know that you can hover. If you don't hit people over the head with info, they don't see it (and even when you do, they still miss it). You have to look at it as if you were as dumb as possible, as new as possible, and looking for an overall fluid experience for everyone. Text facilitates that much more consistently. Fjaratalk 03:48, 9 April 2022 (UTC)
Mostly oppose - Per above users. I will say that I see the value in certain situations of using only icons, namely mobile (or for collapsible headers 👀). It especially helps with reducing the size of tables. The one I particularly hate is the Members? header that so many tables have. It genuinely annoys with how much space it takes up. Not to mention, the icons don't actually tell you whether it's members' or not. It only tells you if it's Owl (t | c) • 11:20, 9 April 2022 (UTC)or , which I personally think helps players just as well, regardless of the text in the header. If we at least included "yes" or "no" then I could see the argument. If you know what the star is, you know what it means. If you don't, then the colour alone doesn't really imply anything.