BlizzCon hasn’t even started yet and we’re getting news from it already. Apparently Future Publishing is readying a magazine targeting nothing but World of Warcraft players, with the highly original title of World of Warcraft: The Magazine. It appears there will be a huge advertising push for the new magazine at BlizzCon this weekend – Future will have a booth on-site selling yearly subscriptions (for $39.99 a pop). Attendees will also receive a mini-magazine to hype up the full publication’s release, which they’re aiming to make happen around the time of WoW’s fifth anniversary in November.
Can a highly specialized print publication like this survive in today’s economic climate, especially when others of its kind are dropping like flies? That depends. I can tell you, at the peak of my WoW playing, I sure would have spent $40 a year for a magazine like this to feed my addiction. In fact, I still really like actual, physical gaming magazines and I subscribe to a few of them (R.I.P. EGM). Even with the proliferation of blogs and online magazines these days, there’s still something about holding a physical copy of a periodical in your hands, with the flashy pictures, full-page ads for upcoming titles, letters from gamers who know not of what they speak and the ability to easily carry the thing around to show your friends the latest and greatest info on some upcoming games. Think about it, do you really want to lug a laptop into the bathroom while doing your business? I didn’t think so. Nothing digital ever will replace the nostalgia of holding the physical copy of a gaming magazine in my hands.
So, I can definitely see how something like this WoW magazine could work, especially since there is no newstand distribution, so it won’t cost as much to produce because there are no wasted copies that no one will buy. Every copy will go to someone who actually wants it enough to drop $40 per year on it. Oh, and since its an official magazine, there’s always the possibility of Blizzard dropping exclusive news via that medium. Here are some specifics.
- Its subscription only, at a price of $39.99 per year (£29.99, €34.95).
- Every issue will be 148 pages and won’t include any third-party advertising.
- It will likely be advertised only through official Blizzard means – worldofwarcraft.com, the WoW launcher, etc.
- It will be the same dimensions as Future’s Edge magazine. Same paper quality, too.
- It will be launching simultaneously in North America, the UK, France, Germany and Spain.