My question https://worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/q/35628/75 has been through the wringer, it seems. First it was off-topic, then after a major edit, it was on-topic, and now it is off-topic again.

Let's get this over and done with once and for all.

Why is this question off topic - and can anything be done to salvage it?

  • $\begingroup$ I think this question would make an excellent addition to the case studies - pinning down controversial questions like this will help up improve the specification of on/off topic. $\endgroup$
    – Tim B
    Feb 12, 2016 at 9:20

2 Answers 2


Disclaimers: I wasn't part of the first closing round, and neither of the reopening ground. I haven't seen the edit history (before now), but I was one of those who voted to close it in the current stage.

I already commented on the question,

The power is quite general, I understand. As it stands, I don't think it would be unanswerable, so no IG (or it keeps on the right side) for me. However, you are asking about a specific use of that power... for a plot. So for me it is a plot building, and not world. The power is already there.

but I'll try to explain it further here.

I think it is an interesting question. I think it is answerable, so no idea generation, not too broad, etc. However, you present us with with a situation, and a power, as well as a typical use for it. Now the questions can be summarised as

How can my character use it in the best way to fool the others?

And to me, as interesting as it is, this is not about building a world. It is about developing the plot. And plot questions are off-topic.

Unfortunately, I don't think your question can be saved (to me), as the part of the world for that is already made. I really suggest you to join on the chat where such discussions can be adressed. And very welcome. Writers might be an option, but they also avoid discussing plots.


Here's my 2 cents:

After reading your edit, I feel that the question is off-topic, but not for the reasons stated in the close reason.

It seems to me that the only reasonable answer to give right now is "It depends on how the two "programmers" think".

To give a more specific answer would require details that answer the above question, which would then make it a individual character question, thus still off topic.

To not give the answer to that question leaves it either too broad or opinion based (since multiple valid answers could be given that are more specific than the above quoted statement).

Note: I have no idea how to fix that question.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .