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Writing A Proper ReadMe

- by Argalius
Created: 5th May 2006
Last Edited: 5th May 2006

When you're about to release your mod, it's important that you always include a well written and detailed ReadMe. This will help those out that don't know how to install a mod and can solve many questions from those that downloaded your mod.

So what should a proper ReadMe include?
First you'll start off with the name of your mod, lets say we created mod XYZ. We should also include the version, so people can see there too which version of your file they downloaded. Even if you only release one version and don't plan to release any more versions in the future, it's always wise to include the version number 1.0. Also include your nickname so they can see who created the mod.
This is what we got so far:
  • XYZ V1.0 ReadMe
    by Me
    ------------------------------------------------ (adding dividers is always good)
After your header it's always nice to thank people for downloading your mod and hope they'll enjoy your mod, bladi bladi bla. Eventhough people downloaded your mod because of a description they saw from it, also put a description in your ReadMe. Which brings us to this:
  • XYZ V1.0 ReadMe
    by Me
    ------------------------------------------------

    Thank you, bla bla enjoy bla bla.
    This mod features:
    1. Lorum ipse
    2. Lorum ipse
Now that we have the opening of the ReadMe it's time to get to its core. Always include how to install, so file "X.a" goes to "A", "X.b" goes to "B", etc. Also don't forget to add that we're talking about the installation folder, not the one in My Documents. It can also be a good idea to surround file names and folder names with ", to make clear what the name of the file/folder is. And although installation of a mod is important, also add how to uninstall the mod! Most of the time this will just be removing the modded files, but add this too. So now we got to this:
  • XYZ V1.0 ReadMe
    by Me
    ------------------------------------------------

    Thank you, bla bla enjoy bla bla.
    This mod features:
    1. Lorum ipse
    2. Lorum ipse

    Installation Guide:
    Put "X.a" in folder "A" and "X.b" into folder "B". When you've done that move all "*.c" files into folder "C".

    Uninstalling Guide:
    To uninstall, just delete "X.a" out of folder "A", "X.b" out of "B" and "*.c" out of folder "C" and you're done!
We've now put together a basic ReadMe, but there are some things that can also be worth adding. Things like possible problems users may encounter and how to solve them, or maybe known errors that you haven't got to chance to fix yet. And as latest put down your e-mailaddress, site and/or forum thread so people can get in touch with you when they've got problems/suggestions etc. And the very end, say something like "Enjoy this mod!" and then your nickname. So a well written ReadMe should look something similar to this:
  • XYZ V1.0 ReadMe
    by Me
    ------------------------------------------------

    Thank you, bla bla enjoy bla bla.
    This mod features:
    1. Lorum ipse
    2. Lorum ipse

    Installation Guide:
    Put "X.a" in folder "A" and "X.b" into folder "B". When you've done that move all "*.c" files into folder "C".

    Uninstalling Guide:
    To uninstall, just delete "X.a" out of folder "A", "X.b" out of "B" and "*.c" out of folder "C" and you're done!

    Possible Errors:
    • Problem A
      Solution A


    When you've got any question, suggestions etc. please contact me at me@internet.com, go to my site http://me.internet.com or leave a message in my forum thread located at aoe3h.heavengames.com/XYZ.

    Enjoy the mod!

    Me
PS: I'd recommend you to make your ReadMe with Notepad, since everybody can open .txt files.