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Official Playstation Magazine dead... and arisen.


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Gosh, that’s stark @Dudley. It’s been two and a half years since GamesTM shuttered. 
 

I wonder how print fares in other regions - I’ve always understood that games mags were particularly big in the U.K. compared with elsewhere in the world. Looks like EGM and Famitsu still run. 

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I've got the first 70 ksues of both the PS1 and PS2 editions and they are still mostly good. Early on the PS1 version was brilliant and has aged really well. Feels like Edge lite, you can see Steve Jarratt's fantastic influence. 

Middle third it was dragged down under Pegley but Mike Goldsmith brought it back up again. 

 

PS2 edition, started really well too. Good writing, lack of crazy hype and good features. Shifted the lifestyle stuff to the end too. 

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13 hours ago, Dudley said:

Plus a kids one from DC Thompson and a couple of specific magazines for Minecraft and Fortnite.

 

 

Not even these are safe. My children got into occasionally picking up the Unofficial Fortnite magazine with their pocket money and I was suprised to hear from them that it's recently stopped. Seems a fairly stark indicator when a mag on a mind-blowingly massive, constantly evolving game that's regularly discussed in the playground can't sustain an audience. 

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It's sad to see the gradual demise of print media on newsagent shelves. I haven't bought the official PlayStation mag for many years, but I've subscribed to Play as I'm intrigued to see what the release from the "official" tag will offer. I've a complete collection of a few classic mags from the past, and I've recently started to dip into ebay for the odd issue here and there of magazines that I used to own. (And I've had a subscription to Edge since around the year 1832.)

 

There are several other gaming magazines that don't benefit from shelf-space on WH Smiths that are also worth a read (and it's great to see more pop up recently on Kickstarter). I'm a writer for Ninty Fresh and Switch Player magazines, and we make the magazines with a real commitment to preserving print media. It's hard to get anywhere near the numbers that Future would get with their official distribution channels, but all the same these little independents can hopefully play a part in preserving print media.

 

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5 hours ago, Popo said:

Gosh, that’s stark @Dudley. It’s been two and a half years since GamesTM shuttered. 

 

Yep, and Gamesmaster was killed on the same day as TM.  OXM was this time last year. Not a games mag but Computer Shopper finally went this year too.

 

In terms of other computing mags, Mac and Linux Format are still alive, some 7 years after PC Format's demise.

 

4 hours ago, Jolly said:

 

Not even these are safe. My children got into occasionally picking up the Unofficial Fortnite magazine with their pocket money and I was suprised to hear from them that it's recently stopped. Seems a fairly stark indicator when a mag on a mind-blowingly massive, constantly evolving game that's regularly discussed in the playground can't sustain an audience. 

 

Yeah I did a series last year on the current magazines and I was just researching a follow up episode because of this news.

 

So I've just found out the Fortnite mag (edited on the side by the people from PC Pro of all places) stopped with it's Christmas issue.

 

There were actually 2 Fortnite mags but it looks like the other one died possibly with the issue I used last year (it's never had a useful web presence).

 

As of this month at least "110% gaming" and the Minecraft one are still viable.

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First issue is out and it's very obvious this was a bit short notice, it's 3 jpegs and a find/replace away from looking identical to the issue before it.

 

No bad thing of course.

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On 02/05/2021 at 11:15, Jolly said:

 

Not even these are safe. My children got into occasionally picking up the Unofficial Fortnite magazine with their pocket money and I was suprised to hear from them that it's recently stopped. Seems a fairly stark indicator when a mag on a mind-blowingly massive, constantly evolving game that's regularly discussed in the playground can't sustain an audience. 


The thing with games that get updates that fast though it that surely the magazine will be out of date by the time it’s published?

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Remember when Future turned Games Radar in to a one-stop smorgasbord of games writing, both bespoke news articles and reviews and editorials curated from their print portfolio? That seemed like a great way of hedging against the disadvantages of print media.

 

Did they trash that to Pivot To Video or was it just not successful?

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2 hours ago, Broker said:


The thing with games that get updates that fast though it that surely the magazine will be out of date by the time it’s published?

 

Generally the basic content of those is known far enough in advance though.  Or seemingly so from the few I've browsed through for research.

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1 hour ago, Alex W. said:

Remember when Future turned Games Radar in to a one-stop smorgasbord of games writing, both bespoke news articles and reviews and editorials curated from their print portfolio? That seemed like a great way of hedging against the disadvantages of print media.

 

Did they trash that to Pivot To Video or was it just not successful?

 

I think in their eyes it wasn't a success. It came about in an awkward time where website adverts were pretty low and things like patreons, youtube ads, sponsorships and promotional spots were not as common as they are now. Really they should have kept at it but i think they were just a little too early.

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I really hope there’s some kind of revival of edge online at some point. For one there’s no online equivalent of what edge provides out there and secondly I worry one day we’ll get a “this is the last issue” out of the blue and all the previous writing will be lost and we’ll just have mag scans.

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I used to subscribe to 3 or 4 magazines 5 or 6 years back including OPSM, but one day on a works trip to London I was on the tube and saw an advert for a free trial of Readly.  I had never heard of it before but had a look and all four magazines I was paying twenty odd quid a month for were on there, so for little over a fiver a month at the time I signed up and have not looked back since.
 

All sorts on there including this, Edge, Empire, SFX, Film, TV Times, T3, Stuff, Sky at Night, loads of history mags and most of the daily Newspapers.  You can also get magazines from around the World, so some of the USA and Canada stuff is decent.

 

Edit:  All the back issues are there too.

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Worth checking your local library as well, mine has the last three issues of most of Future’s output via apps. Handy if I want to skim something and not feel guilty about paying £5 to ignore 90% of a mag.

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On 02/05/2021 at 11:31, Pixelated Ben said:

 

There are several other gaming magazines that don't benefit from shelf-space on WH Smiths that are also worth a read (and it's great to see more pop up recently on Kickstarter).

 

 

That's interesting! I supported this a while back, which I enjoyed. Are there any other general titles out or on the way via Kickstarter, @Pixelated Ben? I'm not so bothered about single system ones.

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8 hours ago, Alex W. said:

Remember when Future turned Games Radar in to a one-stop smorgasbord of games writing, both bespoke news articles and reviews and editorials curated from their print portfolio? That seemed like a great way of hedging against the disadvantages of print media.

 

Did they trash that to Pivot To Video or was it just not successful?


They also obliterated their very decent forum, which a number of us were very pissed off about. In the end,  the regulars jumped ship to form GRcade.

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17 hours ago, Fireproofradiator said:

 

That's interesting! I supported this a while back, which I enjoyed. Are there any other general titles out or on the way via Kickstarter, @Pixelated Ben? I'm not so bothered about single system ones.


That's a nice looking magazine - I hadn't heard of this one.

Are you aware of A Profound Waste Of Time? There have been two issues so far (well, actually, issue 2 isn't out yet...) https://apwot.com/

Ninty Fresh (which I write for) covers Nintendo "from NES to NOW". https://nintyfresh.net/ 

[Lock-On] is a multiformat release, and issue 1 is available for pre-order here: https://www.lostincult.co.uk/shop/p/lock-on-gaming-journal

 

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On 05/05/2021 at 15:02, Sarlaccfood said:

I really hope there’s some kind of revival of edge online at some point. For one there’s no online equivalent of what edge provides out there and secondly I worry one day we’ll get a “this is the last issue” out of the blue and all the previous writing will be lost and we’ll just have mag scans.

 

I think that one might happen soon.  Numbers for Edge are difficult to come by and the one person on this forum who knows is too smart to say and I'm too polite to ask but it never did super well, is expensive to produce and having worked towards it for a career their last editor lasted about 3 months and fucked off to Media Molecule and still has effectively not been replaced.

 

On 05/05/2021 at 15:51, Waggo said:

I used to subscribe to 3 or 4 magazines 5 or 6 years back including OPSM, but one day on a works trip to London I was on the tube and saw an advert for a free trial of Readly.  I had never heard of it before but had a look and all four magazines I was paying twenty odd quid a month for were on there, so for little over a fiver a month at the time I signed up and have not looked back since.
 

All sorts on there including this, Edge, Empire, SFX, Film, TV Times, T3, Stuff, Sky at Night, loads of history mags and most of the daily Newspapers.  You can also get magazines from around the World, so some of the USA and Canada stuff is decent.

 

Edit:  All the back issues are there too.

 

Thing is though, how much is Future getting from Readly for this?

 

You've basically gone from giving Future £20, to giving them some small part of a fiver.

 

So yes, it's legal and everything but I don't think it's helping keep those magazines in existence.

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Presumably for everyone who converts a bunch of subs in to one Readly, there are a lot more people looking at the mags that otherwise wouldn’t, and Future can tell that to advertisers.

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On 02/05/2021 at 15:52, Dudley said:

In terms of other computing mags, Mac and Linux Format are still alive, some 7 years after PC Format's demise.

 

It's surprising that a Maximum PC UK edition hasn't been tried. They could just recycle content from the US edition.

 

PC Pro is still being published, though is a shadow of its former self. The latest issue* contains an interview with Alan Sugar, where he claims to have kickstarted the PC market in the UK (or words to that effect).

 

* Disclaimer: The issue that I browsed in Sainsburys yesterday, at least.

 

Are there any Playstation (or Xbox) fanzines? I recently stumbled across VitaMag while browsing the Switch Player website, but every issue seems to be sold out.

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18 hours ago, Pixelated Ben said:

Are you aware of A Profound Waste Of Time? There have been two issues so far (well, actually, issue 2 isn't out yet...) https://apwot.com/


Ooh, that’s a really nicely designed maga -- what?! £23? Lol, bye then.

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1 hour ago, jonamok said:


Ooh, that’s a really nicely designed maga -- what?! £23? Lol, bye then.

I nearly spat my brew out when I saw that. I assumed £20 was for the collectors edition.

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£23 for a magazine is a lot, but I would guess they're modelling A Profound Waste of Time more on academic journals than newsstand mags, and £23 is not unheard of in that space. Although that said, looking at the sample pages, it does look more like a high-end newsstand mag, like Monocle or something.

 

I guess that's what happens when you make a high-end mag with 200 pages of editorial and no adverts, but the price seems way too much to take a chance on.

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8 hours ago, K said:

£23 for a magazine is a lot, but I would guess they're modelling A Profound Waste of Time more on academic journals than newsstand mags, and £23 is not unheard of in that space. Although that said, looking at the sample pages, it does look more like a high-end newsstand mag, like Monocle or something.

 

I guess that's what happens when you make a high-end mag with 200 pages of editorial and no adverts, but the price seems way too much to take a chance on.

 

Given how shitty the academic journal model is (even ignoring the whole 'gatekeeping of knowledge' aspect, the bit where academics pay for the privilege of having their articles put in a periodical that then costs a bomb to read is the worst fucking thing), that's really not an approach I'd want to see emulated.

 

Then again, having seen many talks on start-up magazines, the most commonly recurring themes of 'how I made it work' from the creators seem to be "I am independently wealthy" and "I don't pay my contributors", so perhaps it's not all that worse a space.

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On 06/05/2021 at 23:38, knightbeat said:

 

 

It's surprising that a Maximum PC UK edition hasn't been tried. They could just recycle content from the US edition.

 

They could but it's going to get kicked in the face immediately by Rasp Pi press' one.

 

On 06/05/2021 at 23:38, knightbeat said:

 

PC Pro is still being published, though is a shadow of its former self. The latest issue* contains an interview with Alan Sugar, where he claims to have kickstarted the PC market in the UK (or words to that effect).

 

Which is a little weird because the staff is identical to a decade ago, like completely.  Danton, Graham-Smith, Kobie, Honeyball, Collins (also the editor of that Minecraft mag).  It's now produced by Tim Danton's company and just printed by Dennis so maybe they're a little careful on budget but the people have been constant.

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On 07/05/2021 at 11:35, Wiper said:

Given how shitty the academic journal model is (even ignoring the whole 'gatekeeping of knowledge' aspect, the bit where academics pay for the privilege of having their articles put in a periodical that then costs a bomb to read is the worst fucking thing), that's really not an approach I'd want to see emulated.

 

The way academic journal publishing currently works is either the author pays the publication costs and the work goes up under an open licence (usually a Creative Commons licence); or the author pays no fees and the work is behind a paywall. Not both at once, except perhaps with especially bad predatory publishers.

 

APWoT is somewhere in the book-magazine continuum, jostling around with the Bookazines and exhibition programmes, but it's not really a periodical is it?

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