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RIP CGW

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the new-boss-same-as-the-old-boss dept.

55

Heartless Gamer writes "Ziff Davis Shuts Down CGW, Opens Games For Windows. The Ziff Davis Game Group, which produces consumer game site 1UP and Electronic Gaming Monthly and Official PlayStation Magazine in North America, has announced that it is shutting down its US print magazine Computer Gaming World and replacing it with an officially Microsoft-branded 'Games For Windows' magazine and website."

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55 comments

Silent Post (1)

Average_Joe_Sixpack (534373) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849675)

RIP CGW ... I didn't even no you were ill :-(

Sucks, but (4, Funny)

flanksteak (69032) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849683)

Ziff Davis noted that the magazine will carry with it much of Computer Gaming World's editorial style and tone. Because of this, the organization confirmed that it has decided to no longer publish Computer Gaming World. The new magazine and web initiative will carry on the editorial, production and art staff of Computer Gaming World.
The official MS shilling aside, it sounds like it's going to be the same magazine. Even though it was "Computer" GW, it's not like there were other platforms that have enough games to warrant a monthly magazine. Games for MacOS and/or Games for Linux would just be a pamphlet with the same headline over and over: "Inside this issue! Halo, and this month's newest 75 variants of GPL'd Solitaire!"

Sayeth I, who no longer loses large amounts of time to big games now that I'm using Linux.

Re:Sucks, but (3, Insightful)

secolactico (519805) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850058)

"Inside this issue! Halo, and this month's newest 75 variants of GPL'd Solitaire!"

Don't forget Tux Racer. For some reason, whenever someone brings up the "games for linux" theme, Tux Racer is always mentioned. And Nethack.

Re:Sucks, but (1)

Mr. Jaggers (167308) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850245)

Yeah! And Neverwinter Nights! And Return to Castle Wolfenstein! And Tribes 2! And UT! And Quake! And Frozen Bubble! Too bad so many of the professionally produced ones are unavailable or discontinued now... for a time, it was good.

Re:Sucks, but (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850540)

UT2004? Quake 4?

You're right, there aren't that many, but old games can still be good, and Quake 4 is pretty recent. So is Doom 3.

I mean, I have a Windows partition, but if you're going to FUD, at least make sure you aren't missing something obvious. Stick to the gray areas.

Re:Sucks, but (1)

acidrain69 (632468) | more than 7 years ago | (#15853133)

You and I know that old games can be good, but to a magazine, everything is

BUY BUY BUY!
NEW NEW NEW!
EVERYTHING WE SAID LAST ISSUE IS BS! Go spend $500 again this month, let use tell you what our advertisers want you to buy.

I actually hit Slashdot's lameness filter on that one, had to take out some capital letters. See, Slash code agrees with me.

Re:Sucks, but (1)

Rifter13 (773076) | more than 7 years ago | (#15861233)

I can only play a really good game, once through, in single player. I recently picked up X3 and Hegemonia which had been out for a good long time, but I generally buy new games. Old games may have been fun, but updates to them, are always good.

Re:Sucks, but (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 7 years ago | (#15871818)

I seem to be busy enough that I can afford to stay behind the curve. This gives me the benefit of only playing the games that actually turned out to be good, and getting to play them on my favorite OS. I still play just as many games as I would anyway, they're just a bit older.

Well, not always. Quake 4 was Linux from just about day 1.

Re:Sucks, but (1)

Mr. Jaggers (167308) | more than 7 years ago | (#15886018)

<rant>

Eh? FUD? I never claimed that any of the games I mentioned (including Q4 and UT'04) were the discontinued ones. No, I'm talking like all the awesome Sid Meier games that Loki ported, for example (well, *I* liked them). Remember Descent? IIRC, Descent 4 played natively on gnu/linux. That series was discontinued! Remember Tribes 2? Tribes: Vengeance *can't* be ported because of the physics engine they chose to use. I played America's Army for a while, and icculus has to let go of that one because the U.S. army is discontinuing the gnu/linux version (I thought it was pretty cool, others may not). Of course I love free games, but to me, the richness and depth of a game that has had thousands of hours of work put into it with professional animators, tileset artists, professional voice-actors etc., is worth paying for. Neverwinter Nights is a great example of that.

Anyway, my point is that as far as gnu/linux gaming goes, I'm not terribly difficult to please... for example, NWN is a fantastic game and I still play it, even though the aurora toolset was not ported natively by BioWare, and even though we had to install from a windows install initially (then, from a humongous download of the client resources, and then *finally* from zip archives in the platinum edition, or the nice Tuxgames installer with HotU, IIRC), and even though we had to wait a really long time for those bastards at radgametools to give us a bink video player so we could patch in the cut-scenes (which you can do with a community-written perl script! It's awesome, they play right between the chapter transitions like they are supposed to). As long as the game plays natively, and is complete (meaning that you can install it, expect patch releases fairly closely to Win32/Mac patches, and can play *all* the features & levels), then I'm reasonably happy.

I don't want to install cedega. I don't want a transgaming subscription. I don't want emulation or API-reimplementation or play within a virtual machine. And dang it, I want to buy a box with a penguin printed on it somewhere, *not* the windows version (with gnu/linux client binaries bundled). I want my purchase to be counted as it is. Tuxgames has been pretty good to me so far, but they can only distribute what is produced.

I'm sorry if what I said sounded like FUD, but in comparison to the Loki days, we certainly don't get a wide variety of the latest and most popular releases. Perhaps that is not such a bad thing, considering the steady flow of crap being pushed into the market, but Loki really picked some gems. Those were, without exception, the golden days of gnu/linux gaming.

</rant>

Re:Sucks, but (1)

Mark Maughan (763986) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850999)

Neverwinter Nights just had a patch recently. The community is still active and will remain so till NWN2 comes out in September, at which point the Mac and Linux NWN community will probably die.

Re:Sucks, but (1)

otis wildflower (4889) | more than 7 years ago | (#15852039)

And, of course, World of Warcraft.

One game to rule them all, and in the darkness camp them.

(and the universal patch 1.9 came out what, like 3 weeks after the first MBPs?)

Good Riddance (3, Interesting)

Biovital (845860) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849703)

Good, I wont miss this gaming rag at all. I have a free subscription for it, and its terrible. When I first read it 2 or 3 years ago, it seemed somewhat more mature than PCG had become, but like PCG it tries to be too funny and clever every chance it gets and it usually fails. The reviews (which were crap to begin with compared to other mags) became some silly editorial on the game rather than an actual review (for that you have to goto 1up.com). It just became too taken with itself and lost focus. So I wont miss the magazine at all.

Re:Good Riddance (3, Interesting)

Cadallin (863437) | more than 7 years ago | (#15857167)

Unfortunate that you only caught it so late. The time to be reading it was in the '80's and '90's. When the Editor in Chief was Russell Snipe (the founder) or Johnny Wilson. During those years, the writing was top notch, and the approach much more mature and sophistocated. Originally it was aimed at the over 25, educated game player. The point of view of the magazine was that it was covering an emerging Art Form. They didn't just whore out praise to the highest bidder. How did the game look? How did it sound? How did it play? How did it make the reviewer feel? How was the writing? How are emerging technologies going to affect the industry in the future? Both the review and the editorial content was superb. As long as they continued to focus on their near 30 demographic (who were always the magazine's primary readership) the magazine was good, and thrived. Ziff-Davis, on the other hand, wanted to grow the readership by targeting an increasingly younger audience, this resulted in reduced quality, and the readership plummeted.

GGW? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849715)

I really thought the article was "RIP GGW" for a minute. That would be a real tragedy.

Re:GGW? (2, Funny)

4D6963 (933028) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850550)

I really thought the article was "RIP GGW" for a minute. That would be a real tragedy.

Same for me, except that I thought it was GWB

Re:GGW? (1)

Duds (100634) | more than 7 years ago | (#15857939)

I'm not seeing the tragedy there.

Re:GGW? (1)

4D6963 (933028) | more than 7 years ago | (#15858829)

I'm not seeing the tragedy there.

I didn't say there were any ;-). Nah just kidding, I like George Bush, it's just that he's such an aweful president.

Re:GGW? (1)

master_p (608214) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851845)

I thought "RIP GWB"...now that would be a real tragedy!

Games for windows (5, Funny)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849716)

Lets play,"How long will my server stay up before it crashes."
Lets play a game of chance,"Will you let me update my computer or is something wrong with WGA"
Lets play,"Give all my personal information to Microsoft Passport because I can trust Microsoft and that it won't get hacked again."
Lets download Vista and play with the voice recognition software.
Lets play upgrade to a new version of Windows only to find out that the software only works with a new computer(ahem empty harddrive)
Lets play hide and seek to find out where in the registry the IE overflow virus is hiding.
Lets play dungeons and drivers to find out where to locate the last usable driver was located at, luckily the internet helps.

I admit I use windows because I'm too lazy to learn a new OS, but not too lazy to complain on Slashdot.

Re:Games for windows (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850167)

Let's play, "Global Thermonuclear Warfare"

Re:Games for windows (0, Troll)

Schemat1c (464768) | more than 7 years ago | (#15853019)

Let's play, "Global Thermonuclear Warfare"

How about a nice game of chess?

"officially Microsoft-branded 'Games For Windows' (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849723)

Remember that phrase...

Say goodbye to Xbox hardware, say hello 'Vista Exclusive'.

With the 360 hardware selling at a slower rate than the first Xbox and already racking up over a billion in loses in its first year, Microsoft is turning their attention to Vista. Console hardware clearly isn't an area Microsoft has any competence in. However, dealing with pc game developers is something relatively cheap and something Microsoft has a long history with.

Re:"officially Microsoft-branded 'Games For Window (1)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851179)

I don't know who you are, AC, but you seem to make this post in EVERY game story comment set that I read. Normally it gets the -1 it deserves.

Re:"officially Microsoft-branded 'Games For Window (1)

zootm (850416) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851589)

Console hardware clearly isn't an area Microsoft has any competence in.

With the competitor PS3 weighing in at a far higher price and looking as though it won't actually be capable of a hell of a lot more than the 360, I'd say that hardware isn't Microsoft's problem. Marketing is a more likely candidate.

gone too soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849737)

I loved all the issues of CGW I read. Sad to see it go.

ouch (2)

mackil (668039) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849756)

That sucks, I just renewed my subscription...

Fare well (2, Interesting)

BackwardHatClub (763903) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849785)

I used to read CGW but it just seemed to go downhill a little bit, I couldn't really put my finger on it but I let my subscription lapse and haven't missed it terribly.

Re:Fare well (1)

RsG (809189) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849860)

I think the problems started when they changed editors. The old guy (Johnny something?) retired, and there were at least two successive replacements that I remember. Bear in mind, this was quite a while ago, so my memory is fuzzy, but it was about ~1-2 years after that that I finally gave up and cancled my subscription. By then, they were well on their way downhill, with smaller and smaller magazines, and less good writing in between the ever increasing number of ads.

I'm not overly surprised it took this long. They were damn good in their prime, and it takes quite a long time for a slow decline to lead to cancelation.

Oh no! (1, Interesting)

HoneyBunchesOfGoats (619017) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849953)

What will become of my free subscription? :(

Re:Oh no! (1)

Megane (129182) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850203)

What will become of my free subscription? :(

Don't worry, I'm sure Microsoft can spring for a free subscription with a drop of all that money it's hemmoraging from its Xbox division.

Re:Oh no! (1)

welshsocialist (542986) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850990)

When my subscription to Talk magazine [wikipedia.org] ended when the company went out of business in 2001, I was offered a subscription to TIME. I threw the offer in the trash. My thinking is that CGW's publishers will do the same by offering you a subscription to a comparable magazine.

Re:Oh no! (-1, Flamebait)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851188)

You know, I was going to mock you for subscribing to that (I guess you were similarly angry when your sub to George was cancelled, too).

But seeing your username, I think you mock yourself better than I could. Being a socialist puts you in the same crowd as 90% of the rest of the slashherd (just like masturbating to anime and having rectangular glasses frames and listening to Skinny Puppy).

But being Welsh.... kind of hard to top that.

Re:Oh no! (1)

welshsocialist (542986) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851535)

OK, here we go...

You know, I was going to mock you for subscribing to that (I guess you were similarly angry when your sub to George was cancelled, too).

I've never read George. I liked (and miss) Talk because it had articles that were deep and informative. I also agreed with the general political viewpoint.

But seeing your username, I think you mock yourself better than I could. Being a socialist puts you in the same crowd as 90% of the rest of the slashherd (just like masturbating to anime and having rectangular glasses frames and listening to Skinny Puppy).

I never knew there was a 'slashherd' creed I had to sign up too. I think for myself, thank you! I don't read/watch/masturbate to anime, have rectangular glasses frames, or listen to 'Skinny Puppy' (who?). As your socalist jibe, I agree with some of the socialist views, such as free health care, fair trade, and equality.

But being Welsh.... kind of hard to top that.

I'm not from Wales. My mother's side of the family is, and so by descent am I.

hahaha, you zinged him good! (1)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 7 years ago | (#15853793)

BTW, eat a dick.

Re:hahaha, you zinged him good! (0, Flamebait)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 7 years ago | (#15856238)

Nice name. I didn't know there was internet access in Gitmo'.

O_o (1)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 7 years ago | (#15858723)

I don't get it.

sad (1, Insightful)

syrinx (106469) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849981)

Best gaming magazine around for a long long time (they started in the early 1980's.. 81? 83?), but from what I hear it's declined a lot in the past few years. It's really too bad.

Jumping the shark (3, Interesting)

JoeCommodore (567479) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849992)

Over the decades I've seen magazines get bought out and becomre narrow in ther scope only to eventually die off. I'm sure the new magazine will mainly play to the Microsoft partners and put blinders to the world that is not MS approved, then readers will look for something with more broad and callenging content instead of a glorified MS games catalog and it will die.

Eh. . . (2, Interesting)

Blinocac200sx (955087) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850019)

I subscribe to Game Informer, and with my subscription I get a discount at Gamestop. In other words, I won't miss CGW.

The writing was on the wall when ... (5, Informative)

unsigned integer (721338) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850264)

They canned Scorpia. And then they started giving ratings to games
instead of making you read the review and actually make an informed
opinion. You can see the steady decline once they sold themselves(?)
to Ziff-Davis.

This was THE best gaming mag when I was growing up - and then they
fucked it up with tons of new changes under the new management, and
you can watch the gradual fleeing of the staff as month after month
you'd read a little intro of "someone new joining the team" and
someone else departing. I was a heavy reader once I got into gaming ..
I guess that was around '85 ... and then I read until the early 90s.

Re:The writing was on the wall when ... (1)

Teddy Beartuzzi (727169) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850418)

Yup. It really died about 10 years ago.

I guess Ziff Davis really nailed it to the perch well.

Re:The writing was on the wall when ... (1)

BrynM (217883) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851481)

I guess Ziff Davis really nailed it to the perch well.

No, no... No, it's stunned! Yeah! You stunned it, just as it was waking up! Microsoft magazines stun easily, major.

(Just kidding, it's been an ex-magazine for a while now)

Re:The writing was on the wall when ... (4, Informative)

jesup (8690) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851062)

Giving in to the "ratings" pressure was the first big step down the slippery slope, and the other was selling to ZD. I've subscribed (and/or bought off the newstand) since the mid-1980's; I stuck with it as it slowly declined over the last decade especially.

I remember when it was fat, covered DOS, (680x0) Mac, Amiga, and ST games, and there was NO console coverage. That was a LONG time ago. I miss it. I also miss the old "Hall of Fame".

I don't plan to renew my subscription to whatever this new magazine is (even if almost all the games I play nowadays are Windows (plus Nethack, Angband and a few others on Linux).

Re:The writing was on the wall when ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15851753)

"And then they started giving ratings to games instead of making you read the review and actually make an informed opinion."

They went back to not giving out ratings, you know.

Re:The writing was on the wall when ... (2, Interesting)

Xian97 (714198) | more than 7 years ago | (#15856618)

I have to agree. When they dropped Scorpia, I dropped my CGW subscription. In the 80s, a CGW subscription was a must if you played Adventures or RPGs. I also used to follow Scorpia's roundtable on GEnie. She was always ready to help someone when they got stuck in an RPG, back when there were little else besides hintbooks or CGW to get that kind of information. I still read her reviews and insights at http://www.scorpia.com/ [scorpia.com]

Re:The writing was on the wall when ... (2, Interesting)

WesternActor (300755) | more than 7 years ago | (#15856984)

Bingo. For all of the 1980s and the first part of the 1990s, Computer Gaming World was an exceedingly literate, exciting publication. The articles that "reviewed" games were true criticism, often the way books or politics might be assessed in academic journals. Didn't one of the top editors (was it Russell Sipe or Johnny Wilson?) have a doctorate in philosophy? That kind of thing infused the entire magazine with an intelligent, adult mindset that was utterly crucial for guiding computer games and audiences through the earliest stages of their development. Scorpia had a vast amount of knowledge, played everything, knew even more, and responded personally to readers for a long time. (I had an ongoing dialogue with her for many years, the memories of which I still cherish.) Whether you were looking for technical information about a game, or whether you wanted it assessed in a larger entertainment or political context, or whether you just wanted to know whether you were likely to enjoy it, Computer Gaming World would tell you all these things, and more.

The Ziff-Davis takeover was disastrous, the firing of Scorpia boneheaded, and just about every other change for the visible worse. But it's quite possible that the real CGW couldn't survive in the market that had popped up, one being driven by children and adolescents--and a publishing company being run by people with hardly more sense--who couldn't be bothered to actually read, consider, and absorb more about a game than a five-star rating or a shilly examination of its graphics, sound, whatever. I was a faithful subscriber all throughout the 1990s, hoping that it would reclaim a bit of its former glory, but when my subscription lapsed in late 2000/early 2001, I don't think I even noticed. For me, and for countless of others who were raised on the thoughtful, brilliantly composed, and engrossingly informative pieces that typified CGW during its best years, the magazine had left many years before.

I won't waste the time or the money seeking out the last issue. But I'll continue to search for the first one--and as many in between as I need to complete my collection of the best gaming magazine when it and the industry were at their zenith. Rest in peace, Computer Gaming World.

In my opinion, (2, Informative)

Cadallin (863437) | more than 7 years ago | (#15857178)

The Escapist does a significant part of CGW used to do, at least as far as editorial content goes. If The Escapist were to grow to include reviews and some additional content (Hire Scorpia! I know she's still out there, somewhere, I've found interviews with her around the net from time to time) I imagine it would pretty much be what CGW was.

how absolutley....uninspired (2, Interesting)

Danathar (267989) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850774)

Somehow the announcement of another magazine geared towards windows gaming seems a bit anti-climatic. Kinda like the grand opening of another McDonalds..

Phew (2, Funny)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850871)

Almost thought that read GCW. I was already worried where I could get my noCD patches then.

Re:Phew (1)

Yaotzin (827566) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851519)

There's always megagames.com. :)

My heart aches... (1)

Taulin (569009) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851099)

All through college I read this mag. To be honest, I haven't bought it in quite a while, but wow...to see it go is like seeing one of my childhood actors die. I still remember reading about how a shareware game called 'Doom' was available, and then reading about some strange game called 'System Shock'. It was at that time I thought...Hmm...maybe I shouldn' buy an Amiga 4000. Luckily Comodor went broke, and I got a P90. RIP! Great mem!

Computer magazines? On PAPER? (1)

RoboRay (735839) | more than 7 years ago | (#15851539)

"Print is dead."
              - Egon Spengler

Two words (-1, Offtopic)

Stalli0n (921471) | more than 7 years ago | (#15852019)

Coconut Monkey

Games for Windows? (1)

gblues (90260) | more than 7 years ago | (#15856210)

More like "World of Warcraft Weekly," AMIRITE?

Nathan

Review Ratings (1)

JDAustin (468180) | more than 7 years ago | (#15861446)

Recently CGW dropped their review ratings. Personally, I like them though. The reviews in the latest issue arn't even reviews but rehashing what some online reviewers said of a game.

Oh well. There is always the UK edition of PC Gamer and Computer Games Magazine (very underrated mag).
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