The history of UK video-game magazines

I wrote a massive six-page feature on the history of video-game magazines for the 200th issue of Retro Gamer, which itself is a huge special on the history of video games from the 1960s to the present. It just went on sale today, and I heartily recommend picking it up – the editors have really gone all out for this milestone issue, and it’s a cracking read. There’s even a timeline running through the whole thing that lists notable events in video-game history, which I imagine must have been a gigantic pain in the arse to lay out and edit. Bravo to everyone involved.

I spoke to various games-magazine luminaries for the feature, including Roger Kean (Crash!), Julian ‘Jaz’ Rignall (ZZap!64, C+VG, Mean Machines), Steve Jarratt (Zzap!64, Total!, Edge) and Matthew Castle (NGamer, Official Nintendo Magazine), and it was a challenge to squeeze in all their great quotes, even with six pages to fill. Indeed, I originally planned to include a lot more about Edge, but I just ran out of column inches in the end. It came down to choosing between Steve’s quotes on Edge or on Total!, and I went with the latter because the revelation that the first issue of that magazine was created in secret in a loft was just too good not to include.

Finally, massive thanks to Paul Monaghan (@PdmonPaul) from the Maximum Power Up podcast for his help putting me in touch with the interviewees. Paul is a bit of a retro-games-magazine superfan, and his podcast is packed with interesting interviews with old gaming journos – it’s well worth a listen.


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