Print Gaming Magazines Thread


#1

I got a little nostalgia itch this morning for print gaming magazines and looked to see if I could get a subscription. Not for any reason in particular, just that I remembered the joy of getting a new Nintendo Power in the mail each month and wanted to see if I could recapture that feeling. But alas, it seems that the gaming print industry is dead here in Canada. However, I did notice that there are still some print outlets remaining, most notably Game Informer in the US.

So does anyone here have a print subscription? If so, what’s keeping you paying money for these magazines? Are they still printing news and insights that the internet press does not provide? How is the quality of the paper stock and are the layouts interesting to look at? Let me know!


#2

I think the last one I had was for Edge (UK - I get the feeling people get international shipping subscriptions or maybe they just also do limited distribution in the US because it seems it’s known more widely that just by people in the UK) but that was quite some years ago. The dual issues of physical magazines being expensive and (whispers) often kinda not that great. Great feel of good paper stock, lovingly arranged on the page, but the actual words are… I’d rather tip some online writers.

Now back when you got a covertape (then some discs, then a CD!) full of demoware, freeware, and so on with every magazine: that was when they were like gold. But then the internet came along and removed the need to pay a middleman to provide physical transportation for what I really wanted.


#3

I had a subscription to EGM and Game Informer for all of my middle school years but not much outside of that. I bought some back issues of Kill Screen too before they closed shop. That was a good magazine, but I heard that people who were a part of their last kick starter got fucked over.

Kinda off topic, but yesterday I saw a post on the internet that was essentially “the videogame awards are the Oscars of video games and all the other game of the year awards are given out by magazines like IGN” and I’m still shook by it.


#4

A subscription to Retro Gamer is quite pricey in the United States but it’s the one game magazine that I still see quite often on newsstands. I think this is because it puts out an aesthetically pleasing book each month and commits to covering incredibly wide swaths of retro gaming history


#5

This feels like a pretty resurgent time for interests for print gaming outlets – Wireframe just launched in the UK as a fortnightly publication. It’s strange to see a gaming magazine take centrepiece at my local supermarket (although it just because it’s new).

(I am not offering a judgement about the quality of these pieces since I haven’t read any of them!)


#6

Haven’t been super into magazines, but I’ve always been a fan of the more zine style collections of stuff (just recently the grasshopper manufacture fan zine, early killscreen, the offworld collection, etc). I end up subscribing to Wired every once in a while and forgetting to read it, and I tried out tape op (a quarterly recording industry magazine) last year and ended up only reading one. My reading habits have been pretty bad over the last few years, so i haven’t had the interest or reason to subscribe to anything I guess.


#7

The one gaming magazine I had a subscription to, PC PowerPlay, seems to still exist in Australia. Of course most of my interest in the magazine faded as data-caps increased, web design got better and Youtube started to be a major platform for critics. But I still have fond memories of the double sided DVDs packed with free games and demos.
Bringing an issue with me on a family holiday and oogling over every word of the Dwarf Fortress feature but not being able to play it was a wondrous form of torture. One that lead me into enrolling in journalism school only to be told that enthusiast print is dead and I shouldn’t waste my time. Not sure why I stuck with that degree after that.


#8

#9

I don’t have a desire to physical media in a lot of things. All too often is it cheaper and similar enough in quality to just purchase a digital version. Books, comics, movies, ect., all make so much more economical sense to stream or buy from a cheaper digital marketplace.

That’s why I’m so unsure on why magazines feel different. There is something about flipping through the pages. Through all the stories and beautiful pictures. I subscribe to EDGE and sure the writing isn’t great, the previews are of games released a week prior by the time I get it, and it is way too expensive but there isn’t much else. Honestly a lot of it is the art/screenshots and layout of the thing. I like digesting information in a magazine type presentation. Where there are side-notes sprinkled about, images that you don’t need to scroll by to get to the next bit of text, there is a flow to it. And then occasionally as you flip through you get to a full a 2-page picture that POPs and there is something rad about that.

If there were sites or digital-only options that captured that experience and frankly a device that captures that experience of flipping through pages I would be totally down with tossing magazines in the bin. I use a 6 year old tablet to read comics and it works great but magazine pages are just a lil’ too big.

I don’t know, I’m rambling but I like the idea of magazines and either hope there is a comeback or there are entities that explore the format outside of print and screens that work for that.