So, yesterday I found out that an old friend was dying.
After twenty-four years on this green Earth, the magazine known as Nintendo Power is finally being shuttered. It’ll crank out its last issue later this year, but until then it’ll keep walking towards its doom.
I’m a little sad.
When I was a kid, my dad bought me a SNES. I don’t remember my exact age, but it had to have been around 1992 or 1993; I was around 3 or 4 by then. It came with a subscription to Nintendo Power magazine, and after seeing my then-younger dad figure out how to make Mario fly in Super Mario World, I consumed those magazines with a fervor. Video games taught me to read.
Coincidentally, they also introduced me to comics. Through Nester’s Adventures and the branded comics they had in every issue (Super Metroid and Star Fox to name a few), I got my first taste of words and pictures, and the limitless possibilities they held. I still have the collected Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past comic that my dad had to send away for. I consider it my first trade paperback.
It was cool reading NP because it allowed me to see a legion of games that I really had no access to; my family was never the most well off, and every game was kind of like Christmas in itself. My parents divorced around 1993 (when I was 4), so that SNES kind of became my friend for a bit. One of my first gaming achievements was beating TMNT IV: Turtles in Time, co-op, with my dad. We beat Easy, then Medium, and then Hard. We bonded. It was nice.
But when I couldn’t find anyone to play co-op with, or the TV was otherwise occupied, I poured over those magazines. I can tell you codes off the top of my head for games I have never played, and that’s because I was so enthralled with video games as a whole.
That kind of continued when I discovered GameFAQS.com, and their limitless number of documents, but I got my start in Nintendo Power, reading power rankings, seeing previews, checking out contests I could never enter because I was Canadian, and wondering if I could ever get on those leaderboards. It fostered a great appreciation for reading, design, humor and the power of writing; I owe a lot to that magazine.
So I guess that’s why this hit me particularly hard; choosing Journalism as my major has made me privy to the hard times the print industry has fallen prey to, and I guess it was a matter of time. I never thought it would last forever, but I thought I had longer than this.
I suppose this is goodbye, then. Thank you for everything.
We had joy we had fun we had seasons in the sun but the wine and the song like the seasons are all gone