Remember when strategy guides and video game magazine were the way to go? I remember when my family would take trips to the mall, the top three stores for me were the toy store, the video game store, and the book store. It was always a disappointment when I would find the “games” section in the book store, and it would end up being books on something like Chess. Eventually, I would find my way over to the video games section and would be good to go. “Pick me up later” I would exclaim, as the rest of my family would go to Macy’s or something.
Looking through the pictures and the map layouts of games had to have brought joy to every kid’s heart at one point. Strategy guides were so colorful and glossy. They were scientifically assembled to attract children of all shapes and sizes. At the age of 9, I had Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 (I was exposed early to this stuff) and I really wanted to learn the fatalities! I would ignorantly look at the Mortal Kombat 3 guide (which I almost bought!) because I thought it was the same game and copied some of those button inputs down. Sorry to say they didn’t work, but that’s the lengths I went through to learn some hidden stuff. The internet was just about coming up at this time, so I didn’t have access to finding them out online yet.
Now, we have the internet for the stuff the guides offer, but I’m sure young children still love looking at strategy guides. Heck, I saw the Pokémon HeartGold/SoulSilver strategy guide and wanted it, because it was so big and shiny. I guess now I’m too smart to shell out $15-$20 for something I can get for free, but back then people didn’t even have a choice. It was buy the guide or lose!
Video gaming magazines were also a great fond memory of mine. I never really had a subscription to a magazine until I was a teen, but I had friends. All I have to say is Nintendo Power magazine was awesome. The posters my friend would get every month, along with the news, mini strategy guides, previews, and reviews were fantastic. Unfortunately, all this stuff ruined by the internet again. Up to the minute news completely shatters everything we hear from magazines. Unless it’s exclusive news, the information magazines offer monthly is obsolete. Along with the posters, some of the editorials and interviews are cool too, but that’s all not enough to keep me subscribed.
One of my dreams was to one day write for print such as Electronic Gaming Monthly or Game Informer, but a future in that is (obviously) very bleak. Once EGM went under, and Game(Stop) Informer started to suck, I knew the internet was the way to go. But, I’m going to miss those days. There’s just something so much more satifying about holding a tangible magazine than clicking page after page.
Keep clicking DualShockers though =)