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  • 8.8: Fans would often complain if one reviewer's score kept a game from a higher award. One notable example was the criticism of Mark McDonald when he gave The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker a 9.5, keeping the game from a Platinum Award as the other reviewers gave it a 10. He addressed this in a letter section, pointing out A) the editors don't see each other's scores until print, so he wasn't influenced by what the others gave it B) the valid criticisms he had with the game (a bit on the easy side and tedious ocean traveling) and C) the writer was complaining about a score for a game he hadn't played since it was not yet available in stores.
  • Old Shame: They've had quite a few bad covers they've gone through, but the most maligned of them is probably the time they highlighted Bubsy on the front cover.
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    • Their July 1997 issue featured three cover variants: Fighting Force, Gex 2: Enter the Gecko, and Apocalypse. This was due to the magazine being pressured by multiple publishers to hype up their games, with Activision's hard push of Apocalypse being the worst they had to endure. Dan Hsu has gone on to say that this was the lowest point of the magazine in retrospect, and this moment ended up causing the editors to reconsider how they dealt with publishers in the future.
    • Crispin Boyer once recalled being made to rewrite a preview article about Contra: Legacy of War after the editors felt it came across too negatively, and has gone on to say that he would "surrender himself to a warcrimes tribunal" to apologize for it.
  • So Bad, It's Good: They also consider some of the covers to be this, such as the legendary cover with Fabio, meant to tie into Ironsword: Wizards and Warriors II.
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