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Computer Games Magazine To Shut Down 54

Gamasutra is carrying the sad news that the second-oldest PC gaming magazine is to shut down., owner of Computer Games Magazine and its sister, MMOG-specific magazine Massive, has apparently opted to shutter the outlets as a result of financial troubles. They were saddled with a judgement by a California court in connection to a series of spam messages that went out across the MySpace social site. An SEC filing stated that the company stood to lose at least $40 Million; these shutdowns appear to be the direct result. "Calls to's Florida-based publisher Jayson Dubin, also the publisher of CGM and Massive Magazine, were not returned as of press time, with more recent calls to his direct line getting an automated recording indicating that the number had been disconnected. Besides Computer Games Magazine, also operates two other wholly-owned subsidiaries: voice over IP solution prover Voiceglo, and online game retail outlet Chips & Bits."
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Computer Games Magazine To Shut Down

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  • by Skadet ( 528657 ) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @05:55PM (#18339271) Homepage
    You are correct in what you are saying; however, it goes even deeper. Magazines, as well as other "old-school media" such as radio, are quickly scrambling to find relavence in the age of new media. I used to work for Clear Channel Radio as a webmaster for KFBK-AM [], a radio station with a significant history in Sacramento []. The fact is that people go to the Internet for their information more than they go to TV and Radio -- and if you're not even going to watch TV, what are the odds you'll pick up a magazine?

    I'm more than a little saddened to see historical entities like newspapers (anyone keeping up with Knight-Ridder?) and AM stations going down the tubes. But such is the cost of evolution.
  • It Happens (Score:4, Insightful)

    by El Torico ( 732160 ) * on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @06:14PM (#18339575)
    This just in, many horse whip manufacturers are out of business due to the success of the automobile. Industry analysts predict that only niche markets such as horse racing and S&M remain.
  • by Gertlex ( 722812 ) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @06:37PM (#18339915)
    I find this news very unfortunate. It was a good read and hadn't degenerated to inane banter and crude statements. The key example I hold up is EGM. That POS is so bad that readers write in complaining about it's degenerative trend and the editors publish these letters and then bash the opinions of their subscribers in direct reply.

    I get the feeling that EGM has a larger subscription base (by far), is suffering sales problems too, and is ultimately resorting to the aforementioned behavior. It seems quality has lost out in the bid for quantity.
  • Re:Myspace? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by McFadden ( 809368 ) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @07:14PM (#18340407)
    Well a quick look on The Google seems to indicate they weren't entirely innocent.

    I'm confused by this. Spamming is bad, but when a spammer suffers the consequences of their actions, we're supposed to feel sorry for them?
  • by Original Replica ( 908688 ) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @07:28PM (#18340611) Journal
    While the mags will be missed, the internet is far better of a medium for game journalism than print.

    I fully understand why gaming mags would succumb to tech first, but can the rest of print journalism be far behind?
  • by 70Bang ( 805280 ) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @08:24PM (#18341237)

    Having grown up with hardcopy, I still use it. If I find something whilst online, that's fine.

    Someone was mentioning Game Magazines, it's almost as if they are interchangeable.

    For a long, long, long time, there have been but three PC-only game magazines:

    1. Computer Gaming World
    2. PC Gamer
    3. Computer Games

    Other magazines mentioned PC-based games on their covers and dedicated a minimal number of pages to PC-based until consoles were such a major force.

    Then there was the issue of PC-only games, desktop-only, and MMORPGs. Once it was evident the MMORPGs was making hand over fist, charging 300'000 people only $10/month for $3'000'000 per month or $36'000'000/year. Other business forces saw this as a salt lick and jumped on the bandwagon, but like a pizza delivery firm, you can't take the pizza out before it's done, expect it to bake, even a smidgin on the way there. As a result, you get lots of chewy pizza.

    This is what happened to MMORPGs, when a shell game was made available (what was it? My memory is failing me in my old age. It was a military game) and a 20MB patch was required to actually do anything, surpassing several months of (Microsoft's) Patch Tuesday. Even then, there was a modicum of a game, asking the customers to bear with them, still charging the clientele, meaning money was coming in and they didn't have quite the urgency they would have had when no money was coming in. Of course, that would have created a Death March.

    Companies who want excellent reputations and keep their entire staff happy, especially in the game industry, do not impose Death Marches lightly. Unless you've been out of college for fewer than five years, you know Death Marches are the same in every industry which may claim allegiance to the people who pound keys.

    Large PC-based computer games are dying a slow death. Multiple versions of Windows, different drivers for many graphics cards, inconsistent amounts of memory, disk space, etc. is too much of a headache to make it worth the while. Consider being a hunter and every animal requires a small range of different gauges, distances to do the damage, and so on. One gun doesn't work in all situations.

    A console-based game, standalone IOR online is more a matter of competition against any other vendor without worrying about the spectrum of hardware.

    I'm still a desktop-only, PC-based game fan, but it's going to be jumping from puddle to puddle for anyone willing to remain with my confines.

    It would almost be more worthwhile for Linux-based & -only games because there are fewer variables in the equation. (I'm not pushing Linux, I'm just saying the math is simpler.)

    I remember starting to work for a computer book publishing division (late '92) which wrote about technologies they wouldn't use. Word/DOS until I dragged them to Word/Windows, when it jumped from 2.0 to 6.0. Create toolbars with buttons to relieve the tedium of finding any special characters inventoried for the Production Department, count and|or renumber tables, figures, etc. You'd be surprised how many things which were done manually.

    [Almost] everyone had a door so they could isolate themselves and focus upon the text (task) at hand. I took the full version of Wolfenstein with me not long after I started for somewhere between 1-2 work weeks, the Wolfenstein Productivity Virus hit. Even the pacifists who wouldn't have picked up a gun to save themselves, their children, etc. were playing. If you knocked on someone's door......."Hold on!" (no boss key) I believe productivity was chasing an asymptote of zero.

    In the 93-94 timeframe DOOM emerged and several of us broke into a phone closet and found some NIC cards sitting around, wired the spare connections in our offices & closet, and at 5pm every day, we locked our doors, put our phones on conference call mode with speakerphones turned on, and played DOOM.

    <sigh> Those were the days.

  • by vux984 ( 928602 ) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @08:43PM (#18341409)
    *shrug*. Everyone I've met who complains that TV is inane impresses me as sanctimonious. How is it that the Discovery Channel is for idiots with square eyes, and is for the enlightened? With insane amounts of programming, the only reason to be exposed to "idiotic crap" on TV is to choose to watch it. There's plenty of idiotic crap on the Internet, too, isn't there, but the same people who smugly proclaim their lack of TV dick around on the Internet. Right.

    No comparison imho. I can consume internet content at a much faster rate than I can watch or listen to the radio. Watching something like mythbusters for example; I find it unwatchable -- they take a bloody real-time hour (including commercials) to deliver content that can be summarized completely in half a dozen text paragraphs. Sure I "miss out" on the explosion, the chick who says "Wow" everytime something happens, the guy covered in yellow goo, the incessant 'coming up in the next scene' scenes before commercials, and of course the commercials themselves. But I don't need or want any of that.

    The worst part is that even in video format there's only maybe 10 minutes out of the 45 that are worth watching. (60 counting commercials)

    All the informational content can be summarized on a single page, and absorbed in ~1 minute by a decent reader of reasonable intelligence.

    Even on the 'real world' internet which is choked full of ads and that one page worth of information isn't concisely presented, and you have to link-surf, scroll around ads, etc to find anything - you can still get all the information in a couple minutes.

    (This is why I HATE 'audio' and 'video news' clips on the net. I don't want to listen to, or even worse WATCH some low res video segment for 5 minutes (often prefaced with a commercial). I want to read a transcript, which takes maybe me 10-15 seconds to skim.)

    The only time I want to watch or listen to content delivered in real time is for entertainment purposes. Or when I need to see something. (e.g. I'd be interested in watching footage of a storm hitting a town, for example if I'm interested in the storm or town for some reason.)

    But in general audio/video in realtime, padded with useless filler, then padded with teaser scenes, then padded with commercials is an excruciatingly painful way to absorb information.

    my 0.02
  • by Call Me Black Cloud ( 616282 ) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @11:30PM (#18342931)
    I'll take my gaming news in magazine format, thank you. I'm not lugging my laptop into the john with me, but that's where I read gaming mags.

In less than a century, computers will be making substantial progress on ... the overriding problem of war and peace. -- James Slagle