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Crash magazine skipped a month?


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So I was reading through my old issues of Your Sinclair and on the cover of issue 71 (Nov 1990) there's a note saying turn to page 4. On page 4, which is the contents page, there's a prominent box-out saying that Crash magazine seems to have gone and that they are very sad about it, and that Crash readers are welcome to subscribe to Your Sinclair. 

So I knew that Crash lasted until 1992 and thought this was strange, but according to http://www.crashonline.org.uk/ they did vanish for a month at the end of 1991 , and returned with the December issue.

I just wondered whether anyone knew what happened there. I don't remember it happening at the time (had moved onto the Amiga a good while back) but was Crash sold or something, and forced to skip a month?

MVIMG_20200709_123317.jpg

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Ah ok, cool! I thought this would be something pretty easy for someone here to answer! As I was always a more loyal reader of YS than Crash, I knew Crash was sold a few times but didn't know when it happened.

Europress didn't have much of a go at it, by the looks of things, seeing as it shut it down a few months later. Was it part of a bigger deal or something?

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I have a faint memory of reading an issue of Crash around that time where they explained their absence, in the form of a story about them visiting a planet called GONEBUST.

 

Edit: looks like this was at the end of 1991, not what's in the YS article above.

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6 hours ago, DeciderVT said:

I have a faint memory of reading an issue of Crash around that time where they explained their absence, in the form of a story about them visiting a planet called GONEBUST.

 

Edit: looks like this was at the end of 1991, not what's in the YS article above.

It probably was that , as the YS is from November 91.

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6 hours ago, deKay said:

Screenshot_2020-07-09_at_13_28_49.thumb.png.63bf2edd742324b9f3780c25fda51f96.pngScreenshot_2020-07-09_at_13_28_57.thumb.png.6c6a5b7cd83de11f5a53c266d0c53033.png

That's awesome, specially the way they acknowledge that Crash would have become nothing more than a little "Featuring Crash" thing on the YS cover if Future had bought them. I'm sure that literally all they would be buying would be the name, right?

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Crash did improve towards the end, when it switched back to A4 and increased the page count in issue 91.

 

The "SU, incorporating Crash" was a less dignified end:

 

 "Europress Group wanted an Atari ST magazine that was published by EMAP," says Newsfield co-founder, and Crash's first editor, Roger Kean. "And they came to an agreement simply to swap it for Crash. It was kept secret from us in Ludlow, so a big shock when the board announced it." 

https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2017-03-12-the-story-of-crash-magazine

 

The EMAP mag mentioned was Atari ST Review. The strange thing is that Europress already had two Atari magazines, ST Action and Atari ST User, the latter of which was a direct competitor to ST Review.

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Did ST Review have a better circulation than their ST titles? Even then, if the competition was eliminated you would think some of the readership would end up at one of their ST mags. (I have no idea how many ST magazines were around at that time.)

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I assume so. Europress ran the 3 ST magazine concurrently until late 1993, when ST Action was closed and became the games section of Atari ST User. ST User would last another year, eventually being closed in Nov 94 and incorporated into ST Review as a small logo on its cover for its final 3 issues (closing in early 1995). Future's ST Format probably had the largest market share, but I imagine Europress made money as a result of people buying every ST mag on the shelves.

 

I never owned an ST, though bought a large number of mags in an ebay auction several years ago. They're wonderfully charming, covering obscure titles being released to a shrinking market, without feeling a need to wallow in self-pity or attacks on other platforms.

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10 hours ago, readonly said:

Crash was so bad at this point -  a covertape with a bonus pamphlet - that a "YS, now incorporating Crash" might actually have been a more dignified way to go.

With the sellotape strategically placed so that it would a)rip half the cover off trying to get the tape off, and when you did it would b)pull the tape out of the cassette so you would have to wind it back in with a pencil and pray that it still worked.

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This thread has hit the old nostalgia glands today, to the point where a review in an issue I've looked at for Footballer of the Year has me wanting to play that again (I used to spend quite a bit of time on that and the sequel). I often get these urges to play stuff though and am put off by the faff (I'm thinking the Amiga in particular here).


What's the 'best' Speccy emulator these days?

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34 minutes ago, Gabe said:

This thread has hit the old nostalgia glands today, to the point where a review in an issue I've looked at for Footballer of the Year has me wanting to play that again (I used to spend quite a bit of time on that and the sequel). I often get these urges to play stuff though and am put off by the faff (I'm thinking the Amiga in particular here).


What's the 'best' Speccy emulator these days?

 

Not necessarily the best way to do it, but you can play it in your browser on archive.org

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On 09/07/2020 at 23:15, knightbeat said:

"Europress Group wanted an Atari ST magazine that was published by EMAP," says Newsfield co-founder, and Crash's first editor, Roger Kean. "And they came to an agreement simply to swap it for Crash. It was kept secret from us in Ludlow, so a big shock when the board announced it." 

https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2017-03-12-the-story-of-crash-magazine


I’m not sure this is the right way around. I was freelancing for ST Review at the time (among others) and pretty sure I visited Macclesfield (Europress) before going to Gray’s Inn Road (EMAP). I’ll have to dig my collection out of the loft :blah:

 

Either that, or I’m getting old (or both).

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45 minutes ago, sonixtorm said:


I’m not sure this is the right way around. I was freelancing for ST Review at the time (among others) and pretty sure I visited Macclesfield (Europress) before going to Gray’s Inn Road (EMAP). I’ll have to dig my collection out of the loft :blah:

 

Intriguing. What type of freelance work did you do?

 

ST Review 1-12 mention EMAP on the cover, with the Europress Enterprise logo appearing on the cover of issue 13 onwards (the Europress name is replaced by IDG sometime afterwards). The ST Review#13 editorial mentions the mag was selling 30,000 issues on average each month, but the publisher had decided to close it and Europress made an offer to take it over.

 

I realise I made a mistake in thinking the mag being swapped was ST Review - the dates don't match up.  It's more likely to have been The One for ST Games, which seems to have been  incorporated into ST Action at some point in 1992

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On 10/07/2020 at 00:36, knightbeat said:

I assume so. Europress ran the 3 ST magazine concurrently until late 1993, when ST Action was closed and became the games section of Atari ST User. ST User would last another year, eventually being closed in Nov 94 and incorporated into ST Review as a small logo on its cover for its final 3 issues (closing in early 1995). Future's ST Format probably had the largest market share, but I imagine Europress made money as a result of people buying every ST mag on the shelves.

 

I never owned an ST, though bought a large number of mags in an ebay auction several years ago. They're wonderfully charming, covering obscure titles being released to a shrinking market, without feeling a need to wallow in self-pity or attacks on other platforms.

I’ve got much more respect for magazines that took that realistic approach, rather than what Amiga Format et al did when the Amiga market started contracting in 1994. (The only Amiga magazine I remember openly writing stuff like “this format’s doomed” was Amiga Power towards the end.)

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5 hours ago, knightbeat said:

 

 

Intriguing. What type of freelance work did you do?

 

ST Review 1-12 mention EMAP on the cover, with the Europress Enterprise logo appearing on the cover of issue 13 onwards (the Europress name is replaced by IDG sometime afterwards). The ST Review#13 editorial mentions the mag was selling 30,000 issues on average each month, but the publisher had decided to close it and Europress made an offer to take it over.

 

I realise I made a mistake in thinking the mag being swapped was ST Review - the dates don't match up.  It's more likely to have been The One for ST Games, which seems to have been  incorporated into ST Action at some point in 1992


Ah, that explains it. I was confusing EMAP and IDG. Europress were in Macclesfield and IDG were Gray’s Inn Road. I must have started writing from them when it went to Europress; I think I wrote one article for Garth Sumpter and then was working with Vic Lennard after that (Vic’s a great guy and I still exchange the odd message with him).

 

I was a hack at the time. I was writing for a few Future magazines (although not ST Format early on) and always wanted to keep work spread across as many publishers as possible. Playing games,  tinkering with computers and writing about it was a dream job until the internet came along and ruined it all :lol:

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Question about timing. When Crash became a 16 page magazine with a tape on the front, was there still a market for games (budget or full price)? I remember the covertapes becoming amazing with titles like Magnificent Seven (I think) giving you 7 full games every issue. Between SU , YS and Crash you'd get so many new games each month.  I can't remember whether all this was going on after the market for new games dried up,  but my memory is that the magazines were still going so there must have been stuff to write about and review. But the games companies must have been up in arms about this. Imagine a playstation magazine giving away seven older games on the front of the magazine.

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10 hours ago, dumpster said:

Question about timing. When Crash became a 16 page magazine with a tape on the front, was there still a market for games (budget or full price)? I remember the covertapes becoming amazing with titles like Magnificent Seven (I think) giving you 7 full games every issue. Between SU , YS and Crash you'd get so many new games each month.  I can't remember whether all this was going on after the market for new games dried up,  but my memory is that the magazines were still going so there must have been stuff to write about and review. But the games companies must have been up in arms about this. Imagine a playstation magazine giving away seven older games on the front of the magazine.

I guess it helped kill commercial games on the spectrum but at this stage it was very let in the lifecycle of the spectrum (when you were getting 6 or 7 games on a cover tape). To be fair some of those tapes were great with some old classics and some were pretty poor. I would guess most major publishers had moved to 16 bit computers and consoles at this stage but I agree it may have hastened their departure. My recollection may be vague as I was buying Sinclair user and your Sinclair regularly (and crash when I could get it) up until 1990 but then switched to Amiga magazines mainly like (Amiga power)
 

Kim justice has a video on the cover tape wars which looks at this topic as well.

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On 10/07/2020 at 18:43, Gabe said:

This thread has hit the old nostalgia glands today, to the point where a review in an issue I've looked at for Footballer of the Year has me wanting to play that again (I used to spend quite a bit of time on that and the sequel). I often get these urges to play stuff though and am put off by the faff (I'm thinking the Amiga in particular here).


What's the 'best' Speccy emulator these days?

Not the question you are asking but just in case you haven't tried it yet, once you get your head around WHD folders Amiga emulation becomes much less of a faff. 

 

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The Commodore Format fan site also has a good article on the covertape wars.

 

Crash introduced a regular covertape in June 1989, while full price commercial titles were still commonplace. The machine may have been in its twilight years, but there was still a large market for it (I only received a +2 in Christmas of that year).

 

I always preferred the Crash cover tapes, even when the YS 'Magnificent Seven' and SU '12 Pack' tapes appeared. My early 90s obsession with Dizzy games started as a result of the demo on Crash 72 and I never would have discovered great 80s platformers like Dynamite Dan without it.

 

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13 hours ago, crocked said:

Is it better than Spectaculator? I must admit I haven’t tried SPIN but will check it out thanks


I think they’re on par. Spectaculator is better supported (SPIN hasn’t been updated in ages) but isn’t free.

 

FUSE is great too, but slightly more technical to configure. Not a problem for most games though.

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Tell you what I noticed in that ad - the amount of women in prominent positions (nothing rude) - art, writing, publishing, marketing and so on. Glad to see there were areas of the gaming industry positively empowering women way back then.

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ZZAP skipped a month too. Commodore Format in response published a daft news piece about a delivery van losing a box full of Commodore Formats as a way of introducing the fact ZZAP wasn't on sale. Turns out behind the scenes Future put in a low bid to take the ZZAP name and "incorporate" it into Commodore Format.

 

I then started freelancing when ZZAP was incorporated into the newly rebranded Commodore Force...

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On 13/07/2020 at 14:59, new666uk said:

Tell you what I noticed in that ad - the amount of women in prominent positions (nothing rude) - art, writing, publishing, marketing and so on. Glad to see there were areas of the gaming industry positively empowering women way back then.

The 80s was an amazing time for empowerment of women.  It's sad to see that formerly respected magazines like Crash and Zzap failed so miserably and it is difficult to deny the fact Newsfield went bust, and Newsfield had some roles where women were in charge.  Most businesses from the 80s have since folded and all of these probably employed a woman at some point. Where are Commodore, Sinclair, Texan Chew Bars and Spangles today?  I used to drink Quattro and watch The Human League on the TV, and they had women in positions of authority performing the most important roles (the main vocal and the ooh-aaahs, as well as looking pretty) yet it cannot be denied that all these goods, services and bands no longer exist.  And every one of them employed at least one woman.  Crucially, The Benny Hill Show was a hugely successful TV show and employed many women, but when Benny Hill died the show ended, despite 99% of the cast still being alive and able to work.  But the women were so lazy that as soon as the man died they all stopped.  Sadly the message of the 80s is that women simply cannot be trusted to work in a business without bringing it to its knees.  It's knees! 

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2 minutes ago, dumpster said:

The 80s was an amazing time for empowerment of women.  It's sad to see that formerly respected magazines like Crash and Zzap failed so miserably and it is difficult to deny the fact Newsfield went bust, and Newsfield had some roles where women were in charge.  Most businesses from the 80s have since folded and all of these probably employed a woman at some point. Where are Commodore, Sinclair, Texan Chew Bars and Spangles today?  I used to drink Quattro and watch The Human League on the TV, and they had women in positions of authority performing the most important roles (the main vocal and the ooh-aaahs, as well as looking pretty) yet it cannot be denied that all these goods, services and bands no longer exist.  And every one of them employed at least one woman.  Crucially, The Benny Hill Show was a hugely successful TV show and employed many women, but when Benny Hill died the show ended, despite 99% of the cast still being alive and able to work.  But the women were so lazy that as soon as the man died they all stopped.  Sadly the message of the 80s is that women simply cannot be trusted to work in a business without bringing it to its knees.  It's knees! 

At first I was thinking "what a dick for being so sexist" then I got to the punchline. 

 

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