Just as Ziff-Davis and Microsoft's trembling lips meet for the long, slow kiss that is Games for Windows: The Official Magazine, Ziff and Sony are, like, totally breaking up. They say it's mutual, that all relationships must end ... but we all know who's really to blame. It's that ne'er-do-well demo disc, that's who!
With the steady erosion of print readership and the growth of online outlets (like Sony's own ThreeSpeech project who, curiously, keep cribbing from OPM) it's no wonder they've reconsidered their commitment to the world of dead-tree gaming journalism. Coupled with their (about to launch) PlayStation Network, capable of delivering videos and demos -- the very same videos and demos that used to come bundled on DVD with every issue of OPM -- the gimmick has dried up.
Increasingly, print magazines rely on these gimmicks to provide extra incentive to read all the gaming news you already read online 3 weeks ago. Game Informer has that infinitely valuable shelf space at the nation's largest gaming retailer while Computer Gaming World had to reevaluate and become Games For Windows. What's curious is why Microsoft not only doesn't see Xbox Live as the final nail in Official Xbox Magazine's proverbial coffin, but they use the magazine to distribute exclusive demos, weeks before they hit Live (see: Rainbow Six Vegas). Maybe, with a 60% attach rate for Xbox Live, they realize there's still plenty of offline 360 gamers who can't get their demos from Live.
[Update: The fine folks at Ziff contacted us to "clarify that the 1UP Network -- 1UP.com, GameVideos.com, MyCheats.com, the 1UP Show, our podcasts, etc. -- and EGM will cover the PS3, PS2, and PSP in depth with integrated print, video, podcast, and web features through the holiday season, 2007, and beyond." So, there you have it. Don't think Ziff is axing the Sony coverage, they're just axing the magazine.]
Read -- Sony's press release
Read -- Ziff Davis' press release