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Magazine / NGamer

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NGamer was a third-party Nintendo-focused magazine, published in the United Kingdom and Ireland and translated for distribution in Spain, France, The Netherlands and Brazil.

The magazine began publication in the early 90's as Super Play, which focused on the Super NES and (occasionally) Game Boy. When the launch of the Nintendo 64 was imminent, the name changed to N64 Magazine (along with a general format refresh), and when the Nintendo 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, 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 worked 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 its inception, the magazine had had a high focus on import games (at least half of which never reached the British market, although they gave a re-review and score if/when it became available locally), had consistently written news and reviews with a density of snark and honesty almost never seen in their market (made possible because they didn't have to tote the company line), frequently featured bizarre ideas for 'feature articles' and 'characters' to add to their aesthetic, and seemed to consistently hire individuals who could combine quality work/writing with British humour. It is for this reason that their fanbase had became 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 seemed to have diminished over time. The announcement that the magazine had been cancelled was made in August 2012, although it still continued online until early 2013.

In addition to that, one of the forum's users created a webforum, GNamer Forum, partly devoted to carrying on the spirit of the magazine.

In September 2017, to coincide with the release of the SNES "Mini" Classic (and the first official release of Star Fox 2, which had never seen the light of day during the console's original run), the team made a special one-off revival issue (#48) for Super Play, bundled free with Retro Gamer #172. Although only sporting about half as many pages as a typical issue from its original run, it was well received and featured aspects such as a modern day reassessment of the games re-released with the console (and a comparison of "then and now" scores).

The following tropes apply to the entire line of magazines, unless stated otherwise.


  • Broke the Rating Scale: Types 1, 3, 4 and 5 have all shown up, with games getting ratings that include -47%note , :-(note , Eh?note , and NOnote . 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 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.
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: Mark Green referenced this trope by name (and even mentioned TV Tropes itself) in a recent issue.
  • The Dreaded: The editor and writers were terrified of the then-President of Nintendo, Hiroshi Yamauchi, comedically portraying him in their columns as a force to be reckoned with, and for good reason. Word of mouth was, after speaking to the development team of The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask they immediately picked up on the fact that his face was the face originally modelled on the Moon, that threatens to crash into the planet. Naturally, the editor included his likeness on the Moon featured in one of their comic panels.
  • 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
  • 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.
  • Market-Based Title/Xtreme Kool Letterz: The French translation was called X64.
  • 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 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.
  • Pass Through the Rings: The infamous Lex Luthor catchphrase "Solve My Maze!" 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.
  • 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).
    • One of the forumites has adopted the phrase as his username.
  • Shipper on Deck: The staff shipped Slippy and Peppy. A lot.
  • The Scrappy: The magazine's staff hated Diddy Kong and weren't afraid to show it. invoked