I remember buying the first issue of Edge magazine back in 1993. It had been heavily advertised in TOTAL – a Nintendo magazine that I bought every month – and it was utterly different from the more adolescent gaming mags of the time. For a start, it came in an intimidating black bag to deter casual reading in the newsagents: you actually had to buy the thing to reveal its secrets. And rather than the sneering toilet humour that characterised many nineties gaming magazines, Edge proclaimed itself to be Serious Journalism. With capitals.
Some may regard Edge as little pompous – and it certainly has strayed over the line into pomposity several times down the years – but it was an important watershed moment. Gamers were growing up – and games were growing up. The arrival of the PlayStation a few years later cemented this trend, with the marketing for Sony’s new machine clearly aimed towards trendy twentysomethings rather than the kids and teenagers of the 16-bit years.
Looking back at the first issue of Edge, nothing proclaimed its Serious Journalism credentials more than a sober feature on what the future of video games would be. ‘The Shape of Things to Come’ gathered opinions from some serious A-listers, like George Lucas and Arthur C. Clarke, as well as various heads of the video game industry. Reading it again 25 years on, it’s striking how accurate many of the predictions were. I took a lighthearted look at how the predictions stacked up for Kotaku UK:
It was good fun to write, so I hope you enjoy reading it, too.