We have a question over on Super User about why a game doesn't start. I suggested he try here instead as SU has a no game-questions policy.

But the another user wondered if questions like that are welcome here. So could you have a look at it and tell if questions like that are welcome?

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2 Answers

up vote 6 down vote accepted

So, we've talked a lot about the hardware end of things: here, here, and aqui.

To summarize the conclusions from those: console stuff is okay here, and PC stuff is okay here if it's exclusive to gaming. Motive alone doesn't count if it's still just a general hardware question. The same really applies to software, though - console stuff is okay here and PC stuff is okay here if it's exclusive to gaming. A question specifically about the game software, such as it not starting, is usually exclusive to gaming (there's always the case where it's due to your own computer's configuration, but who can know that while the question is unresolved?).

Ultimately, technical issues with software fall in the same class of subject as "Where are replays stored", "How do I change the options", and a myriad of other non-ingame questions that we already handle and solve. I think that, as a general gaming software question, these kinds of questions should be allowed. But it should be understood by the asker that asking for tech support is very likely to produce no help and possibly no attention.

Thus far, we currently have a dearth of answers to these questions in general. And a good enough portion of all solved tech issues are solved by the question asker. This is mostly because none of us actually operate a tech support line.

Answers to these come purely because one of us chanced upon the issue ourselves, be it directly or by hearsay. This makes us apt at handling the more wide-spread issues, but ultimately unmotivated when it comes to more unique problems. It's easy to trick a gamer into experimenting with the vision of units or booting up old games to confirm that the waterfall does indeed explode. It's not so easy to convince them to debug a software they had no responsibility in building.

As such, asking a tech support question here is basically a big game of chance. Sometimes you'll be lucky, hit big, and get the complete solution to all your worries. But sometimes you'll just roll about in the desert dust, chirping like the bugs in your game. Most people will probably have better success rates by contacting the actual support line - they make a living out of that.

Thank you for making me learn a new word –  jmfsg Oct 6 '10 at 15:33
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Yes, they are on-topic. See Shooting trouble and supporting tech - yet another tagging qualm.

If you actually look at the thread Arda linked you'll quickly realize that such topics are in contention and that a number of people feel they aren't appropriate –  tzenes Oct 6 '10 at 2:22
@tzenes - I was really quoting the only question where this was discussed. If you disagree, that's what this question is for and you should write an answer. I for one say we should keep them. –  user56 Oct 6 '10 at 4:45
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