Template talk:InfoBoxMilitaryCommand

Possible fields to add[edit]

I would add Year, in order to allow the template to terget unit changes of names, or maybe even their parent formations. Changes or names are not that strange and we have 1 page for all the "names" while the other ones are redirects to this one--Pserratv (talk) 11:11, 23 March 2019 (EDT)

The current infoboxs have a "reference year" do you mean carry that over or do you mean impliment it in a different way? (Sorry if I miss the obvious, I have just finished work and I am really tired).--Dmon (talk) 17:25, 23 March 2019 (EDT)
In the new proposed template (below), there is no year:
Formed formed
Disbanded disbanded
Previous Designation(s) Previous Designation
Nickname nickname
Affiliation affiliation
Parent Command parent command

Formed and Disbanded are two specific milestones, and I'm refering to the current Reference Year of inbobox, missing in this sample template.--Pserratv (talk) 14:49, 24 March 2019 (EDT)

The idea is that the InfoBox should have no reference year. We want to do away with time-sensitive information in the infobox.
But it may be worth having a section for sub-units, for brigade-sized and larger formations and very large merc units. Frabby (talk) 15:14, 24 March 2019 (EDT)
As Frabby said, we are trying to avoid connecting the infobox to a specific year (or even era in some of the more long lived units), The sub-units one would be really easy to do and would in effect replace the "Units of the xxxx" section of brigade articles, yes?--Dmon (talk) 17:46, 24 March 2019 (EDT)
Kinda-sorta, yes. I imagine it a bit like a file directory structure, where "Parent Command" is the next higher "folder" and sub-units are the next lower tier, to the extent where they're considered worth noting. The lowest tier would be regiments by default, because of BattleTech's organisatorial fixation on regiments; most battalions and companies aren't noteworthy in and of themselves. There are special cases of course, and these would usually have their own articles which would then be noted in the sub-commands section, like Sorenson's Sabres, The Fox's Teeth, and Rolling Thunder. Merc units follow the same scheme, with the caveat that they are mostly smaller than a regiment and wouldn't feature notable sub-units; that's only the case for multi-regiment units.
However, I wouldn't want the infobox section to replace the article section, just to provide a quick overview of the most important info. The article section may provide much more detail, and/or feature less notable sub-units that are known but are not relevant enough for the infobox. Frabby (talk) 03:24, 25 March 2019 (EDT)
I like the idea but on a practical level I have few concerns, Any thoughts on how to handle sub-units that have changed names as there will likley not be room for notes. I also think it might gave a prolem confining it to the Brigades and above. We would likely see the conventional support units getting added in at regimental level.--Dmon (talk) 05:19, 25 March 2019 (EDT)
I've created a test sample to see how it looks: User:Pserratv/test mercenary. Looks ok. As per how to handle sub-units, our risky point are all those commands (RCTs) for which there is a very defined BattleMech main component and less known sub-units like tanks/infantry units. I would suggest we keep names usually at the level given in the Field Manuals--Pserratv (talk) 05:37, 25 March 2019 (EDT)
Indeed, RCTs would very quickly get out of hand.--Dmon (talk) 06:03, 25 March 2019 (EDT)
Would they really? I'm surprised. When treating a RCT like a brigade, all you have to do is list its constituent elements here, at the largest respective level (and only if known and named). Every other detail either doesn't belong here (no discussing companies in a brigade article) or at least should be adressed in the article proper and not in the infobox. Frabby (talk) 04:51, 31 March 2019 (EDT)
I guess it depends how you think about it. For example 11th Arcturan Guards, they have the 9th Timbuktu Armored Cavalry Regiment attached/assigned to them, but the 9th are not a "sub-unit" of the guards as such, they are likely a sub-unit of either the Timbuktu militia or of an adminastrative brigade that probably exists in universe (the Timbuktu Armored Cavalry) but has never really been confirmed due to the way BT handles things. As such listing the units in an RCTs sub-unit list would wrong on a technical level even if it is correct to what the books say.--Dmon (talk) 07:56, 31 March 2019 (EDT)

Order of precedence[edit]

I if we are to include sub-units I will change the order to allow for larger sections of the box.

  • image
  • Designation
  • Nickname
  • Previous Designation
  • Affiliation
  • Formed
  • Disbanded
  • Parent Command
  • Sub-Commands

Is what I am thinking, possibly move affiliation down to between disbanded and parent command. I did the first one with the loose info blocks as "who are they" = designations, "Who do they work for" = affiliation and the parent command, "when" =formed and disbanded.--Dmon (talk) 05:52, 25 March 2019 (EDT)

Just one thing. Once we are clear which is the best template to use, can you please share it somewhere in the Home/News section so all editors are aware?--Pserratv (talk) 14:47, 29 April 2019 (EDT)
I plan to try and have the old template articled deleted so people don't get mixed up too.--Dmon (talk) 15:07, 29 April 2019 (EDT)
You can redirect templates, and before we update a few thousand pages I think redirects would go a long way. A minor problem is that editors like myself tend to be lazy, using obsolete articles as templates for new articles and thereby using obsolete infobox structures. We need to make sure the "how to create a military unit" help files/articles are up-to-date with the new template. And yes, of course announcing it in the News is a given I think. Once it is finished. Um. Did we finish the discussion above? Frabby (talk) 17:02, 29 April 2019 (EDT)
I am lazy in terms of reuse an existing template, but you know I am also capable of updating a lot of articles in big packs.--Pserratv (talk) 02:42, 30 April 2019 (EDT)
I think we are all guilty of the old copy/paste. Easy half of my artickes start out that way. I do think we can do this though. I am sure Neuling would be willing to help out too, and he is good at handling large projects if we can keep him interested.--Dmon (talk) 03:14, 30 April 2019 (EDT)
I have tweaked the format a little since this was last updated, and even snuck out a test batch in the Northwind Highlanders. Nobody has objected so I think it has worked! Smiley.gif--Dmon (talk) 06:56, 3 April 2020 (EDT)


In order to make progress on this I have switched over the Northwind Highlanders Brigade and the Independent Nik's Cavaliers Commands. Both commands need major work on their articles anyway but between them they will give us an idea of what might work and what might not.--Dmon (talk) 08:29, 12 January 2020 (EST)

Copied over from Talk:InfoboxMercUnit[edit]

Other Time Frames[edit]

The InfoBox only handles one time frame currently (the only data I have is for 3025). I would like to expand it so that it covers other time frames, but I'm not sure what other time frames are covered in the source books. 3050? 3056? 3125? If someone can let me know what other times are provided, I'll add those to the InfoBox. Obviously, some of the units don't exist in later frames (like my own 12th Star Guards), but others, like ELH, do, I believe. Any help would be most appreciated. Thanks! Bdevoe 11:35, 4 August 2007 (CDT)

Field Manual: Mercenaries covers 3058, while Field Manual: Mercenaries Revised, Mercenaries Supplemental, and Mercenaries Supplemental II cover 3067. Some units have separate scenario packs that cover other periods, as the Black Thorns do. I would suggest making one box (since they all contain the same info anyway) and adding it in for any appropriate time. Scaletail 13:34, 13 August 2007 (CDT)
What do you think of the idea of having multiple info boxes in a single entry? For instance, I could make it generic and set it up such that the article's author adds the date for that infobox instance? To use the 12th SG as a base, I would have one infobox with 3025 data and potentially another with 3050, but there would be two boxes. Just wondering if that kind of thing would be seen as acceptable or if I should find some way to generate a box on-the-fly. :) Bdevoe 14:34, 14 August 2007 (CDT)
I see no other way of doing it. If we're going to make use of the infobox, then we have to accept that there are going to be times when there could be several, especially for a unit like the ELH. --Scaletail 15:59, 14 August 2007 (CDT)

Extra spacing[edit]

Hi all. I think the infobox has come along nicely, but there is one aesthetic element that I need to fix, which is the extra spacing, especially when a unit has only one subunit. Once I get that sorted out, I think this will be looking good. Bdevoe 13:58, 18 September 2007 (CDT)

This is excellent. I didn't expect you to incorporate all those suggestions I made, let alone so quickly! Scaletail 16:45, 18 September 2007 (CDT)
Well, I was avoiding work, so... :) The only concern I have is the size of the text and the wrapping. There are a couple of things left to do to make it look nice, but I think overall it seems to be coming along well. Thanks for the comments and I'm glad you're happy about it. :) Bdevoe 18:06, 18 September 2007 (CDT)

Adding #if Statements[edit]

Would you mind if I added {{#if}} statements to the rows? Thanks. --Ebakunin 16:56, 21 August 2008 (CDT)

The creator of this template hasn't been around for a while, but I would have no such problem. --Scaletail 20:57, 21 August 2008 (CDT)
Nope, I haven't been around in a LONG time, but feel free to modify anything I've created. That's the whole point of Wikis, so go for it. :) Bdevoe 15:28, 5 May 2009 (PDT)


I was thinking about the layout because the way it is now it fits to the info you can get from the housebooks. Wouldn't it be better to just get some basic stuff in and write the rest in the Composition passage? Also there isn't much room to write more about the composition then the size maybe, details like type of jumpship, name of jumpship, type of dropship, name of dropship, etc. have to be dropped anyway. For now I can only think of 2 points that can be covered there: 1. When was it formed, 2. What’s the status of the unit. In this way an update by a future sourcebook doesn't need another infobox just edit the one that is used. As setting up an infobox each time the unit is covered in a sourcebook, scenariobook, etc. just fills the article with a long line of boxes filled with Yes or No.--BigDuke66 21:41, 24 August 2008 (CDT)

I have felt this infobox doesn't really match the sense of style that the other infoboxes have. I understand where the creator was going with it (a unit -such as the 21st Centauri Lancers- can go thru so many changes that one era will have a completely different feel from another era). So, yeah, I'm up for a re-write, before the category gets too large. However, I wouldn't put a status inside the box itself. Scaletail can remark better on it, but there's been an unofficial policy to write each article as if everything is past tense (due to the grand scope of BT's timeline). Even with the latest sourcebook out indicating Unit A is all but wiped out, a Dark Age novel can indicate the unit is larger than life itself.
So with that in mind, what parameters would you suggest for a new infobox? I like the image, the name, when formed. But what else? (It does need more than that, I think).--Revanche (talk|contribs) 21:54, 24 August 2008 (CDT)
At the moment I can't think of anything else too. Regarding the status I'm not sure where the problem is, think of one of the units destroyed in the FedCom civil war, you would just put in info from the last sourcebook in this case "FedCom Civil War" and set the status to "Destroyed". That such units reappear is very seldom at the mind I can't remember any unit that was really destroyed & delete from the list of active units and came back after that. And even if so then you would just set the status to Reactivated.--BigDuke66 20:40, 25 August 2008 (CDT)
I think the purpose of incorporating "if statements" into the InfoBox was to allow editors to only use the ones that are appropriate, thus reducing the size of the IFBs, which will reduce the clutter and allow us to actually put useful info into them, rather than "Yes" or "No." On the subject of "status," what did you have in mind as a possible choice beyond "destroyed"? --Scaletail 21:44, 25 August 2008 (CDT)
BigDuke, the issue with 'current status' is what defines 'current?' For most of us (I presume), we follow the CBT line, but there are definitely followers of Dark Age in here as well. Just as a bad example (not a true one), I would be concerned if the 'Current Status' of the Brotherhood of Randis stated 'destroyed,' when in our timeline, they are very much vibrant and at the strongest they have ever been. The article, when properly formatted, will include history from all eras, so as a CBT fan, I don't have to read ahead to the DA entry for information on the current (Jihad-era) status of the unit. In other words, for me, that DA status is not relevant, for BTW inhabits a past tense perspective that is removed even from the Dark Age. Geez, I don't feel like I'm being clear. I'm with you that the infobox should not state the status of issues that can fluctuate so much. For me, unit status is just as irrelevant to the infobox as jumpships, armor, CO, etc. --Revanche (talk|contribs) 22:08, 25 August 2008 (CDT)
I think your right. We should only use those things in the infobox that are more or less written in stone. So we stay with image, name & formed? I'll take another look to see if if there is something else we should consider putting into it.--BigDuke66 06:34, 26 August 2008 (CDT)
Great. Thanks, BigDuke. I really hope we can add something to it, otherwise it'll be a small box. Maybe source of first appearance? (I'll keep thinking, too.) --Revanche (talk|contribs) 08:18, 26 August 2008 (CDT)
How about largest size? This way, the relative importance of a unit can be gauged, without needing several IFBs to detail that size through several eras. For instance, knowing that the Eridani Light Horse were five regiments at their peak helps compare them to the Broadstreet Bullies, who were only ever a company. Also, how about primary unit type? Most mercenary commands are 'Mechs, but some are not. --Scaletail 18:43, 26 August 2008 (CDT)
Perhaps followed with that year?
Currently, I see the following:
  • Image
  • Name
  • Founder
  • Origin
  • Formation (Year)
  • Largest Size (Year)
  • Primary Unit Type
For unit type, we'll need to have an established list of acceptable: 'Mech, ASF, Armor, Infantry, Mixed, Clowns. Okay, maybe not that last one.--Revanche (talk|contribs) 19:09, 26 August 2008 (CDT)
What gives me a headache is the definition of size especially in conjunction with Mercenaries. We got lots of units that don’t follow the usual sizes. Just look at Wolf’s Dragoons Ok that is an extreme example but how can you count them together when they are so mixed? From the FM:U their Alpha Regiment consist of a reinforced mixed company, reinforced mech regiment, reinforced armor regiment, infantry regiment and a regiment of ASFs not to speak of all the other regiments or their warships, dropships, jumships, space stations & planet I really don’t know how you can count all this together to get some numbers of any significance.
Also primary type leads to a lot trouble, what defines primary type? Sheer numbers? Look at units like the Black Magic, the FM:U states it has a company of techs, 2 mech lances, 2 ASF lances and 2 companies of mixed vehicles & battle armor. Whether you go by sheer numbers or by BV I don’t think that any approach will lead to a clear statement.
I thought of "Origins"(Tracing back to an old SLDF, house unit, etc.) & "Founder"(Who formed the unit)--BigDuke66 19:57, 26 August 2008 (CDT)

As I said, most units are mercenaries. Battle Magic is specifically a technician-oriented unit that maintains combat units for specific jobs. The ELH, Wolf's Dragoons, and Group W are all 'Mechs. I thought it would be nice to delineate other variations, like VTOLs for Mick's Blue Skye Rangers, Assault DropShips for the Medusans, Aerospace Fighters for Hell's Black Aces, etc. I'll concede that size is difficult for some of the larger units, Wolf's Dragoons being the worst, but what's wrong with "Five 'Mech regiments with supporting assets and two independent battalions"? It's a mouthful, but the point isn't to be specific, either. --Scaletail 20:47, 26 August 2008 (CDT)

I think that is too much a mouthful for an infobox. In extreme cases, like the Dragoons, simplify as much as possible; just give a generalization (such as a + symbol), and point to the sub-command articles (or intra-article descriptions). For examples: 5+ regiments (see Description section).
BigDuke, I think if a unit is clearly a combined forces unit (like WD is), then Combined or Mixed is appropriate.
For Origins, I'd think that could be an optional (i.e., hiding) line, unless we clearly delineate every variation: Star League, House, Clan, Independent, (others?).
Founder: another good call. Provides another instant link to a character article that way. I'm adding those two to my list above. I'm less keen on Largest Size (Year) now that we're populating the infobox with better data. --Revanche (talk|contribs) 21:39, 26 August 2008 (CDT)

Merge with InfoBoxStateUnit[edit]

Proposal by User:Dmon copied over from Talk:Bad Dream#About contracts

I have been thinking for a while that it might be worth doing away with the Merc units infobox and moving them over onto the standard unit box as it is less "time sensitive" than the merc one. The commanding officer tables I have slowly been rolling out are also a better way to note the commanding officer than the main infobox as the are more flexible in this regard aswell.--Dmon (talk) 09:00, 25 January 2019 (EST).

I like the idea. The Infoboxes for merc units and state units are so similar that they should be merged into a single, unified "InfoBoxMilitaryUnit". Editing from my smartphone is a pain, but I may start something tomorrow. Frabby (talk) 15:08, 25 January 2019 (EST)
Seems a good proposal. If done, please ping me as I'm always working with my open Mercenary unit topic and I would like to be aware. Maybe it would be a good time to also allow to show which unit are not 'Mech equipped.--Pserratv (talk) 05:14, 26 January 2019 (EST)
The new unified InfoBox will likely only include perpetual information about the unit in question - things like crest, name, date of inception, date of disbanding. It will not, by contrast, include "time sensitive" information like unit composition, commanding officer, deployment, rating or the like. That is for the Unit History section in the article, but inherently unsuitable for an infobox. Frabby (talk) 06:31, 26 January 2019 (EST)
The only real concession I would make to "time sensitive" information is to possibly could be to include a previous designations or something along those lines for when a unit changes its name. Reason being that we currently redirect old names to the current one, I can see this causing a little bit of confusion sometimes so it would allow users to confirm they are on the right unit article at a glance.
Another one could be an affiliation section that works exactly the same as in character articles.
So maybe something like this:
  • logo
  • unit designation
  • nickname (dropdown)
  • previous designation(s) (dropdown)
  • affiliation
  • parent formation
  • formed (dropdown)
  • disbanded (dropdown)

--Dmon (talk) 08:20, 26 January 2019 (EST)

we could attempt to do something like formation type and use generic stuff like Infantry Battallion, Aerospace Wing, combined arms regiment etc but it runs into trouble with stull like the Fedcom units upgrading to RCTs or Lindons Battalion that changed their size over the course of their career. So this would likely be more trouble than it is worth.--Dmon (talk) 08:27, 26 January 2019 (EST)

Development so far, Template:InfoBoxMilitaryCommand. Further input is appreciated.--Dmon (talk) 06:02, 19 February 2019 (EST)

What to do if a unit changes allegiances but not the name[edit]

Which would be the best way to do this: Imagine a unit like the Thumpers, that starts as a mercenary and some time later it becomes a unit from a state. Would we create two infoboxes and set different creation dates? Do we use BR tab and try to handle it all together? I'm starting to find a few like this and after though I took my own decision, this should be something collectively handled.--Pserratv (talk) 12:04, 22 December 2020 (EST)

I looked at what you did the Thumpers article, and yes, that's the approach I would have taken as well. Two minor points, I suggest to put years/timeframes in the infobox for the affiliation, and I don't think you can call an entire military a "parent command" - if the unit even as a state unit is not sorted into some larger command (even if only an administrative brigade such as the Davion Guards) then I'd say it has no parent command. But maybe someone with an actual understanding of military organisation (i.e. not me) knows better. Frabby (talk) 15:05, 22 December 2020 (EST)
As this is now, the Militia is part of something called Army... this might be an oversight, I sincerely do not know.--Pserratv (talk) 15:56, 22 December 2020 (EST)
Bit late to the party but still worth chipping in. Adding in multiples and dates is how I imagined it to be handled when I was developing the infobox, we have a fairly good example in the planet infobox where it is quite common in the population section. As for the parent command, BT has a massive gap in its military organisation. We know from the field manuals and original house books that the houses split their forces into branches but we know nothing beyond that. So if a unit has no clear administrative brigade putting in the over arching army should be fine because no other info exists that we can properly define.--Dmon (talk) 08:23, 23 December 2020 (EST)
I ran into the same issue with, e.g., 2nd Federated Suns Armored Cavalry, and took the same approach with a couple of minor differences: I put the info in reverse chronological order, with the most recent information on top, on the theory that the more recent info is probably the most relevant. I also used horizontal lines instead of <br> tags because I think they look nicer. Tosta Dojen (talk) 08:32, 23 December 2020 (EST)

New changes have broken template[edit]

Hi all,

After the last changes on template, all images are not appearing ok now. See: 1st Donegal Guards for example.--Pserratv (talk) 05:43, 15 April 2021 (EDT)

I see the template has been reverted. I wonder if the issue has to do with how the various older templates allowed images to be added. i.e. Some required only "filename.png" while others needed "File: filename.png" or "Image: filename.png".--Cache (talk) 17:39, 15 April 2021 (EDT)

New changes have broken template II[edit]

Hi all,

This new change on Formed date has some side effect. Now if there is a link in the "Formed" cell, it is not taken and we have "Pages without references". I'm going to amend the links but better if we amend the template.--Pserratv (talk) 04:13, 28 June 2021 (EDT)

This template just does not like being changed!
I think I am going to shoot mbear a message and ask him to have a look at it.--Dmon (talk) 04:19, 28 June 2021 (EDT)
The problem is that with the change now Formed does not appear. Hence it does not generate the link. I amanede one and saw that even with the change "Formed" is not visible. Really this template is a bit temperamental.--Pserratv (talk) 04:31, 28 June 2021 (EDT)
Don't change the references because once we will get it working right they will want changing back.--Dmon (talk) 04:33, 28 June 2021 (EDT)
Changes undone.--Pserratv (talk) 04:44, 28 June 2021 (EDT)
Still not working.--Pserratv (talk) 06:53, 29 June 2021 (EDT)
Yeah Rev was having trouble last night. So I got him to poke mbear again.--Dmon (talk) 06:56, 29 June 2021 (EDT)
Not to point out what you already probably know, but this is a case sensitivity issue. The template calls for 'formed' while the articles I see use 'Formed'. Why does the template have one field in all lower case but others have the first letter capitalized?--Cache (talk) 08:15, 29 June 2021 (EDT)
Just looked again and see that it has both 'formed' and 'Formed' in the fields. Whoops. --Cache (talk) 08:17, 29 June 2021 (EDT)
It is fixed now. But what is strange is that two fields are with non capital letters and the rest are. But it works.--Pserratv (talk) 09:18, 29 June 2021 (EDT)
It's working now, right? I mentioned it on discord, but I had to add another if statement to accept either upper or lowercase formed. It's ugly, but it works. I could've fixed it to work with only one case, but I was worried that would break a large number of pages.--Mbear(talk) 08:03, 30 June 2021 (EDT)
From what I can see, yes, it works now. I must have started typing my previous comment while you were editing the template. --Cache (talk) 08:14, 30 June 2021 (EDT)