This page contains information specific to formatting text on The Other Tropes Wiki and is preserved here for historical reasons. Do not use the information on this page to mark up text for All The Tropes! While some of it will work, a lot of it won't, and you'll just have to go back and redo it all. If you need help or advice on page formatting, click the MediaWiki Help link in the menu to the left.

— The Mgmt.

This page provides a more complete list of some of the markup sequences available. Note that it's easy to create and edit pages without using any of the markups below, but if you ever need them, they're here.

To experiment with the rules, please try editing the Wiki Sandbox. Some additional markup may be listed in a box when you are actually editing a page.

See also Images in Wiki Pages for more formatting tips, and Example Indentation in Trope Lists.


  • Join capitalized words (WikiWords) to make references to other pages on this Wiki. Custom titles and/or spaces between the words will be automatically applied.
  • Links with arbitrary text labels ("piped links") can be created in double brackets as {{url text}} or {{Wiki Word text}}. Text can be an image URL, in which case the image becomes the link to the remote url or Wiki Word. In TVTropes parlance this is a Pothole.
  • Curly braces {{ }} will convert just about any word or phrase (excluding punctuation marks) into an article link by the same name. Note that this is the only way to link to articles with single-word titles (such as Plot), because there's no way to Wiki Word them.
    • Text added to the outside of the brackets can be included in the link. This is useful for pluralizing links; for example {{wiki word}}s links to the Wiki Word page but looks like wiki words.
    • If you want the inverse of that, use the | character: For example, {{Renamed Trope|s}} displays "Renamed Tropes" while linking to Renamed Tropes.
    • Note that this markup does not automatically apply spacing or custom titles -- the spacing and capitalization will be rendered exactly as-is. This can be useful for some articles with nonstandard spacing (e.g. {{MacGuffin}}), although we've got most of them covered by the custom-title system already.
    • Curly braces can be included in piped links, e.g. [[{{article}} phrase text]].
  • URLs can be placed in double brackets [[url]] when the URL itself is not important to the text. For example, [[]] will appear as [1].
  • Troper handles: They all go in the Tropers/ namespace. You can reference one by typing @/{{Tropername}} or @/TroperName.
  • To prevent a word like DvDs from being linked when you don't want it to, use the "Escape sequence" described below. For example: [=DvDs=]

All internal references by default point to "Main." To link to a page in a different namespace, put it in front of the wiki word:
Test/{{Trope}} gives Trope.

If for some reason you want your link to show the namespace, you can use a period instead of a slash:
Test.{{Trope}} gives Test/Trope.


  • Do not indent paragraphs
  • Words wrap and fill as needed
  • Use blank lines as separators
  • Use \ (backslash) at the end of a line to join the next line to the current one
  • Use \\ (two backslashes) at the end of a line to force a line break

Bulleted Lists

Bullet lists are made by placing asterisks at the left margin. More asterisks increases the level of bullet. We limit to three levels:

  • First-level list item
    • Second-level list item
      • A third level item
        • Four bullets, but still a third level item!
    • Another second-level item
  • A first-level item

Horizontal Line

Four or more dashes (----) at the beginning of a line produce a horizontal line.


  • Use doubled single-quotes (), i.e., two apostrophes, for emphasis (usually italics)
  • Use tripled single-quotes (), i.e. three apostrophes, for strong emphasis (usually bold)
  • Use five single-quotes (), or triples within doubles (five apostrophes), for some other kind of emphasis (usually bold italics)
  • Use pairs of doubled at-signs (@@monospace@@) for monospace text.
    • Note: the two pairs of at-signs have to be on the same line of markup text, and they cause line breaks.
    • The equivalent of < pre > is to put double at-signs at the beginning and end of each line.
  • Emphasis can be used multiple times within a line, but cannot span across markup line boundaries (i.e., you can't put a paragraph break in the middle of bold text).
  • Little note about potholes and emphasis: the single-quotes need to go outside the brackets in order for it to work properly. For example, ''[[PotHole this]]'' is the right way, and gets you this. On the other hand, [[PotHole ''this'']] is the wrong way, and leaves you with this. In order to bold/italicize only part of a pothole, you need to make a separate one; ''[[PotHole like]]'' '''[[PotHole this]]''', for instance, to get it like this.

Text Effects

  • Big and Small caps: [[AC:Text]] for Text (as opposed to using [-...-] for ALL CAPS in smaller text)
  • Superscript: [[superscript:2]] for 2
  • Subscript: [[subscript:2]] for 2
  • Spoiler tagging: [[spoiler:hide this text]] for hide this text.
  • Strike-through: [[strike:text]] (note that, due to abuse, this only works on the forums, and is invisible on the wiki proper)


URLs ending with .gif, .jpg, or .png are displayed as images in the page and float left, allowing text to appear on the right if there is room.

Making an image caption: [[caption-width:number:some text]] will place an enclosed box under the image. Setting the number parameter to the width of the image will make the caption line up nicely with the image.

To shift an image and text to the right:

For images: [[quoteright:Number:Image URL]]

For text: [[caption-width-right:number:some text]]


If you want a trope title to redirect to another trope with content (e.g. make Buffy point to Buffy the Vampire Slayer), in Buffy enter the following (but see Creating New Redirects first for guidelines!):


In order to redirect an un-punctuated title page to its punctuated title counterpart, use the "Ptitlexxxxx" is found at the end of the punctuated title page's URL. Note that redirects to punctuated titles and single word titles (such as Handguns) must have the page title be surrounded by double curly brackets. Like so: {{Handguns}}

See Creating New Redirects for more information.


Headings are made by placing a exclamation mark (!) at the left margin. More exclamation marks increases the level of heading. For example,

Level 1 Heading

Level 2 Heading

Level 3 Heading

Escape Sequence

Anything placed between [= and =] is not interpreted. This makes it possible to easily do WikiWords that are not links and turn off other special formatting interpretation. The [= and =] can span multiple input lines, allowing effects to be applied to multiple input lines. For example, [= at the beginning of a line will cause the text up to the next =] to be monospace and uninterpreted (useful for program listings).

Note that some markups--if left complete within the escape sequence--are interpreted. The redirect markup is one. For these, you will need to escape in parts, like just the brackets.

Numbered Lists

Numbered lists are made by placing number-signs (#) at the left margin.

  1. Prepare the experiment
    1. Unwrap the pop-tart
    2. Insert the pop-tart into the toaster
  2. Begin cooking the pop tart
  3. Stand back

The starting number can be changed by putting [numlist:START_NUMBER] at the beginning of the list and [/numlist] at the end, where START_NUMBER is the number you want the list to start at. Inside this block, all lines that do not begin with "#" are treated as comments and are not displayed; nested lists are not supported here, either.

  1. Prepare the experiment

This line will not be displayed.

  1. Unwrap the pop-tart
  2. Insert the pop-tart into the toaster
  3. Begin cooking the pop tart
  4. Stand back
  5. If cooking bacon at the same time, make sure to not back towards the stove unless you're wearing a shirt. And pants.

Definition Lists

Definition lists are made by placing colons at the left margin:

definition of term
second-level item: definition of 2nd-level item

This effect can be duplicated by using "->", where each additional "-" increases the indent. Font size is decreased for lines prefixed in this manner. Note: insert a dummy comment line before each indented line (-- and higher) to ensure that all indents show.
->term %%NO COMMENTO -->definition of term %%NO COMMENTO -->second-level item %%NO COMMENTO --->definition of 2nd-level item %%No comment? becomes


 definition of term

 second-level item

 definition of 2nd-level item


Table are defined by enclosing cells with '||'. A cell with leading and trailing spaces is centered; a cell with leading spaces is right-aligned; all other cells are left-aligned. An empty cell will cause the previous cell to span multiple columns. (There is currently no mechanism for spanning multiple rows.) A line beginning with '||' specifies the table attributes for subsequent tables.

||align=center border=1 width=50%
||Left || Center || Right||
||A || B || C||
|| || single || ||
|| || multi span ||||

Left Center Right
multi span


A footnote or hot tip lets you hide some text behind a Java Script link. The reader has to click the link to expand the text in-place. Somewhat similar to the spoiler tag, but for non-spoiler information, and unlike spoiler text, it takes up almost no room until expanded. Very useful for collapsing a tenuously related or humourous aside, or additional explanatory text that would otherwise be cluttering up the trope description.

This is an example of a footnote. [[hottip:*:tenuously related or humourous aside]]

This is an example of a footnote. [1]

Note that you can you can use anything you want as the thing to click, although an asterisk (star, splat, *) is by far the most common:

[[hottip:Don't click me!:Click the example below to see the real text.]]\\


Also, due to a recent modification, the first ]] in the hottip will close it. This can be a problem if you want to create potholes within the footnote:

[[hottip:*:You can't pothole to [[Manga/{{Bleach}} other stuff]] in the middle of a hottip.]]


There is an alternative to this, though, and that's to use notes instead of hottips. The default display text is "note".

[[note]] This is a note. [[/note]]


To use a note with a label other than "note", use the following format. Like with folders, the label does not accept Wiki Word markup:

[[labelnote:No WikiWord, etc. markup in labels.]]Content of note, viewable by click.[[/labelnote]]



Long spans of text can be collapsed like so:

[[folder:Title Or Description]]
Text to hide.
* List
* To
* Hide

Title Or Description

Text to hide.

  • List
  • To
  • Hide

Pages with collapsing folders often have a folder control listed first:


Quote Blocks

Useful only on the forums, since the markup doesn't work in the main wiki. It can be practiced in the Sandbox forum.

{{quoteblock}} Text that you want to quote {{/quoteblock}}.

Special Characters

HTML special characters can be used ("named character entities"). There is a list of them here.

Right To Left Text

Some languages and scripts like Arabic or Hebrew require the opposite of the usual left to right text flow.

For example [[rtl:Text goes here.]] would end up as this:

{{rtl|Text goes here.}}

Notice that the punctuation will be mirrored accordingly.


Text following a %% tag, up to the end of the line, is not displayed and will be visible only in the editing markup. Using this tag at the start of the line will make the entire line hidden from view.

Any word surrounded by percent signs -- e.g. %comment%, %rem%, or so on, will also be treated as a comment marker and text following it (until the end of line) will not be displayed.

Note that any line containing an external link will not allow a comment after the link. This is to prevent parts of the URL from becoming part of a comment in case the URL has more than one percent sign in it. This line, for example, won't, due to the following link to this page. [Administrivia/Text Formatting Rules]]


Behold as I disappear as if by %Author% Existence Failure! Behold as I disappear as if by

%%Behold as I disappear as if by Author Existence Failure!

Alternatively, an entire comment block can be created by utilizing a side-effect of the "numlist" block discussed above, where no lines that do not start with # are displayed.


  1. tenuously related or humourous aside
  2. We call that Schmuck Bait here at TV Tropes.
  3. You can't pothole to other stuff in the middle of a hottip.
  4. This is a note.
  5. No Wiki Word etc. markup in labels. Content of note, viewable by click.
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