8.8: They gave a notorious review to EarthBound (known to some as Mother 2), giving it a score of 69% and pointing out flaws in the graphics, plot and standard uninnovative RPG battle engine. According to them, the game didn't compare to Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy or most of its contemporaries. Fans of the game freaked, and repeatedly wrote in over the following months to demand that the game should earn a 100% score.
This tended to spring up a lot, especially since they had a section of the magazine (in their "old reviews" section, showing past scores) devoted entirely for fan comments about their scores. Most fans who didn't like a review insisted their favourite game should get a 100% — Bill Donohue eventually complained that every fan says that.
"Funny Aneurysm" Moment: A less-extreme example than others related to this trope, but editor Jeff Lundrigan (who often covered games in the RPG genre) also held the nickname of "Lucky" in the magazine. Although he would work at Next Generation Magazine for some time after leaving Game Players, he would later become unemployed and fade into obscurity unlike Game Players alumni such as Slate (Nintendo Power), Donohue (PSM) and Roger Burchill (editor-in-chief of OPM before it closed down) who are still remembered. Pretty unlucky.
Magazine Decay: Game Players went from the wacky comedy-filled magazine with great info to basically a stodgy, boring book with only a couple snippets of humor. Bill Donohue specifically points out that removing the humor from the book killed it.
Something else that didn't help their magazine: their old reviewing system had five simple categories (initially Graphics, Sound, Bells & Whistles, Control and Replay Value but later Graphics, Sound, Gameplay, Innovation & Replay Value). Each category was rated from one to ten; the categories would then be added up and averaged to make the review score. This was replaced by a convoluted 18-point system.