Most video game players have either gone online or grabbed a copy of a video game strategy guide at least once in their gaming lives. Whether to solve a complicated puzzle, defeat a menacing boss, or get every secret in a game, game guides have changed how we play games.
Nowadays, video game guides are available in multiple formats, like the Vibez online gambling guide, Game FAQs, and strategy videos. But have you ever wondered where they began and how they evolved? Let’s have a look into the budding years of video game strategy guides and their continuous evolution.
The Early Years
The first magazine dedicated to video games, Computer and Video Games, launched in 1981 in the UK. C&VG covered some of the hottest 8-bit games at the time, including Space Invaders, Othello, and Chess.
In 1986, Japan’s Famitsu magazine garnered unsurpassed success as it covered Nintendo’s Famicom game console, also known as the Nintendo Entertainment System overseas. The Japanese magazine features reviews for current releases and news about upcoming games for the console. They also gave glimpses of where the videogame industry is heading, with developments in hardware and software.
Golden Age of Video Game Magazines
1988 saw the boom in video game magazines, with Nintendo of America releasing the Nintendo Power magazine. Formerly known as Nintendo Fun Club News, the magazine focused on strategies for specific games and game reviews and previews. It also served as advertising material for Nintendo products and services.
The following year saw the birth of Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM), which became the flagship publication for video games in the US. Compared to Nintendo Power, EGM covers multiple game consoles from both Nintendo and its competitor Sega.
As the video game industry continued to grow, so did the increase in video game magazine titles. Gamepro, Tips and Tricks, Hyper, Mean Machines, and other titles offered various reviews, strategy guides, and walkthroughs for popular games.
At one point, Nintendo offered phone support for their games. Dubbed the Nintendo Power Line, callers would talk to counselors to guide them on complex parts of the game.
Along this time, certain publications offered official strategy guides for games. Prima Games is one of these publications, offering numerous guides for different games, ranging from PC pilot shooters to Japanese Role-Playing Games.
Birth of Online Strategy Guides
While most video game strategy guides and walkthroughs are in print format, the ’90s saw the start of websites that offer the same services. IGN, Gamespot, and Game FAQs were some of these sites, primarily text-based guides for sought-after games. These sites also allowed regular gamers to provide in-depth guides for their favorite titles, expanding ideas and giving rise to some talented walkthrough creators.
As the internet continued to improve and internet connectivity became the norm, publications slowly transitioned from print media to online. One by one, magazines ceased production and continued their presence on website format.
The Future of Video Game Guides
Some content creators are making game walkthroughs, reviews, and strategy guides beyond print and text media. These provide more insight than what traditional media can offer, as these videos are not only easily accessible but also highly detailed and informational.
Video game websites like IGN offer these video game guides. Social media platforms like YouTube also house content creators that deliver this content for avid gamers.
Additionally, some print game guides and walkthroughs are getting more love due to nostalgia. Some special edition print guides fetch a higher price on auction sites, increasing the love for the old media.
Video Game Strategy Guides is Here to Stay
Strategy guides play an essential part in the video game industry, from its early stages to today’s high-octane gaming. Whether print or digital format, video game strategy guides have made gaming more fun, achievable, and completion-friendly.