was a third-party Nintendo-focused magazine, published in the United Kingdom and Ireland and translated for distribution in Spain, The Netherlands and Brazil.
The magazine began publication in the early 90's as Super Play, which focused upon the Super Nintendo and Game Boy systems. When the N64's launch was imminent, the name changed to N64 Magazine, and when the Gamecube and Game Boy Advance were approaching release, it changed again into NGC Magazine. The name NGamer was adopted shortly before the launch of the Wii console, and remained until the January 2012 issue when it was renamed Nintendo Gamer. The magazine was published 13 times per year at 4-week intervals, assigning one issue to each month, then releasing the remaining one for Christmas. The staff work at Future Publishing UK, which since 2003 has also been the home of the UK Official Nintendo Magazine ever since Nintendo stopped publishing it themselves.
The magazine was by far the longest-running unofficial UK publication that focuses primarily on Nintendo, surviving through a combination of market niches and high-quality writing. Ever since their inception, the magazine has had a high focus on import games (at least half of which never reach the British market
, although they give a re-review and score if/when it becomes available locally), has consistently written news and reviews with a density of snark
almost never seen in their market (made possible because they don't have to tote the company line), frequently features bizzare ideas for 'feature articles' and 'characters' to add to their aesthetic, and seems to consistently hire individuals who can combine quality work/writing with British humour. It is for this reason that their fanbase has become so tenacious without becoming unpleasable
, staying with them despite their routine name/design/staff overhauls and the state of Nintendo's games market share. However, these defining traits seem to have diminished over time
. The announcement that the magazine had been cancelled was made in August 2012, although it will still continue online.
In addition to that, a splinter group of fans have created a website, Nintendo Nation
, partly devoted to carrying on the good work of the magazine.
The following tropes apply to the entire line of magazines, unless stated otherwise.
- Bald of Awesome: Jes Bickham.
- And in later issues, Nick "Nellis" Ellis.
- Broke The Rating Scale: Types 1, 3, 4 and 5 have all shown up, with games getting ratings that include -47%, :-(, Eh?, and No. Type 2 also shows up in the previews section: their anticipation for each game is rated out of five, with the unit relating to one of the games being previewed.
- In their past as NGC Magazine, they once gave Giftpia and Get A Love Panda Love Unit a ?? rating each, having absolutely no clue whatsoever what was going on due to the fact that both, especially Giftpia was Japan-only complete with entirely Japanese text. Despite this though they gave 8 and 7 to the former's graphics and sound, reckoning that "There's clearly a quite brilliant game lurking beneath the realms of the Japanese text."
- Brutal Honesty: The key trait that separates the magazine from any comparable rivals. It even has a dedicated section on The Other Wiki.
- The Cast Showoff: Wil Overton was an accomplished Manga-style artist, who often provided the magazine with coverart until his subsequent poaching by Rare.
- Contractual Boss Immunity: Mark Green referenced this trope by name (and even mentioned TV Tropes itself) in a recent issue.
- Evil Counterpart: Mark Green was frequently tormented by his sinister alter-ego Dark Mark.
- Footnote Fever: Used and parodied repeatedly, for example one review featured a mention of Alien 3
- MacGyvering: One "guide" for installing the then brand-new N64 Expansion Pak had Jes levering the old RAM cartridge out with a spoon because he had somehow broken the plastic tool that came with the Pak. And then getting savagely beaten because he had stolen the Expansion Pak from someone else to begin with.
- Mood Whiplash: From their scoring policy: 29-0%: TERRIBLE. Like finding out your new neighbour likes playing loud music at night. And is Hitler.
- The previous scoring policy stated that a score like this is "Like getting a really nasty papercut...in the eye. And then falling over."
- Nightmare Fuel Station Attendant: Martin Kitts, repeatedly depicted in one way or another as some form of inhuman sociopath.
- Note From Ed: Up there with Amiga Power. At least one fan jokingly asked why "Ed" was never listed as part of the staff.
- Running Gag: So many that there's almost no chance of compiling a full list. One recent example is Ninja Cat, an item from Tenchu 4, which is their equivalent of the Chuck Norris jokes.
- Possibly the most famous recent example is "Worth Seven Pounds!!". Originally announced about one of the free gifts that came with the issue (a plastic Wii Wheel).
- Solve My Maze: The infamous Lex Luthor catchphrase from Superman 64's first level was the staff's favourite aspect of all the sub-20%-scoring games they had reviewed, so for a stretch of issues following their conversion into NGC Magazine, they licensed an image of Lex Luthor and added a 'Solve My Maze' cut-out-and-keep footer to one page per issue, in a similar manner to child-level puzzle publications. The puzzles themselves were often nonsensical and impossible to solve. On the last month of the license period, the segment changed to 'Solve My Murder', giving the Luthor image X eyes and providing an open-ended puzzle to determine the murder weapon.
- One of the forumites has adopted the phrase as his username.