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16 August 2010 @ 07:49 pm
J- Gaming Mag stuff.  
I keep meaning to post this, but I keep forgetting.

Did you see that PLAY magazine went under? I'm kind of pissed, because we had a subscription to that one. One day, our issues stopped showing up, but it was around the same month our subscription was up, so we figured that was it. Matt sent them more money, and we never got anyting back from them.

Months later...

We noticed the website was down, all contact info was gone, and there were a few blogs mourning the loss of such a "quality" magazine.


Apparently Dave Halverson has done this before with his numerous other publications. I was reading on another site that when one of his mags goes under, her just packs everything up, declares bankruptcy, and starts a new one.

We kind of feel like suckers here. We liked Play because it covered anime, DVD releases, and all sorts of stuff pertinent to our interests. They had great coverage of the Japanese game expos and whatnot, so I always knew what I was interested in a good 2 yrs before it made it stateside. I loved that Ayami Kojima Castlevania art made it to the cover multiple times, and they even did a feature/interview with her. They covered topics interesting to gamers and regularly ran articles about the impact of games on society, etcetc. Some of it was just a load of pompus drivel, but some of it was interesting. They took a chance, and I could appreciate that much.

I found PLAY when I was working at Hastings in the magazine department. When it came out, I noticed it looked slick, and it wasn't just many pages of columns of game ratings. (As I remembered GamePRO to be back in the SNES days. I haven't been fair at all to GamePRO, and I haven't picked one up since the early 90's :X That being said, I always liked GamePRO better than EGM. I heard EGM went under too...)

I didn't like the magazine's bias, but knowing that it was hideously biased, it was easy to pick out the bits of truth that were interesting to us. With the exception of stuff I was already interested in (Castlevania), I have hated EVERY SINGLE other cover game. Things they hyped up the ass that turned out to be horrible. I didn't like how so many articles seemed like the preachy raving rantings of a homeless lunatic. It's sad to say, but there were 2 writers in particular that I just ignored completely. One had such an unprofessional way of writing it was difficult for me to read. The other just seemed insane :X

All that aside, we would have continued to subscribe if they hadn't just taken our money and run.

Supposedly, Halverson is now going to start GameFan back up. I will not be subscribing, or even giving that rag a second glance. I don't care if it turns out to be some amazing peice of game journalism. If you screw over your fan base, they arn't going to bend over and take it forever. There was no offer to comp us in any way for the money we lost on this bozo. Bankruptcy and run, I guess. The money is gone forever. We certainly arn't going to shell out anymore on a situation that seems to occur every few years like clockwork. :/
Current Mood: aggravatedaggravated
j_koei on August 18th, 2010 03:48 am (UTC)
It's always really tough seeing a quality magazine you enjoy go under, and while I greatly enjoyed reading Play, I had no clue that they didn't comp subscribers after they went under :/ that's a real shame. Even EGM at least subbed the discontinued existing subs with Maxim -- not a great solution mind you, but a solution where they notified the ex-subscribers.
Opinions vary, but many felt that Play trended too much towards the "obscure" and "hardcore" gamer demographic to turn a profit. Which I agree with to an extent -- but GameFan is currently trending even more in that direction. We'll just have to see how it turns out, I guess -- hopefully they'll find a new audience, but from the sounds of it, it might not be ex-Play readers.
HIDE your face: B-T1kyonomiko on August 18th, 2010 05:14 am (UTC)
Would I have been happy with 2 years of Maxim?

..........I probably would have read every issue :X

Seriously, though? Any sort of notification would have been great. I'm sure the last issue had some tear-jerking hearfelt farewells from the staff or whatever, but there were plenty of other people like me who sent in money to rewnew subscriptions that never saw them, even when the mag was still being published. When I looked into it online, there were plenty of covers I didn't recognize at all, and we're usually REALLY prompt about sending in sub cards.

It sucks, but yeah. They won't be garnering my readership with horrible business practices like that. I just want to jump on the "Dave Halverson is a giant douche" bandwagon :P

I imagine it's tough competition for any gaming magazine out there, though. You have long-established mags like GamePro that you have to contend with.. and then wacky shit like GameINFORMER, where the subs are pretty much pushed down the throat of every customer. I imagine if you get pressured into a GameINFORMER sub, you won't be likely to subscribe to multiple gaming magazines after that.

Man.. I hated that about working there.. having to convince people to buy shit they don't want out of fear of losing my own job :(