Ladies and gentlemen, we are gathered here today to remember Nintendo Power. Not its passing, but its life. Nintendo Power will conclude 24 years of publication with a final issue this December. We've experienced the loss of many magazines over the years, but Nintendo Power's conclusion is different for many of us. Directly attached to childhood memories of so many, it was the publication of both the Nintendo Entertainment System and Super NES at the dawn of the console era, with children of the late 80s and early 90s eagerly awaiting the magazine's arrival every month.
We've gathered some fond Nintendo Power memories from today's media after the break. Please feel free to share your happy memories too.
"Nintendo Power was important due to the fact that for many of us there wasn't a game industry back in the late 80s and early 90s, there was simply the NES. It felt like a Bible for the system that lived in our basements and bedrooms, and the one copy that came into the neighborhood every month was traded and pored over and games were hotly debated. I doubt we'll ever seen a console dominate living rooms as much as the NES, and it's less likely that a print magazine will bet that important again. It wasn't just a happy time in our collective gaming history, but a time that's impossible to replicate. In many ways Nintendo Power is evidence of how much the world has changed, and I'm going to sound old and grumpy when I say many of the changes may not have been for the better." - Ben Kuchera, Penny Arcade Report
"One of the fondest memories of my young life is from a Friday afternoon in the late eighties, when my mom came to pick me and my siblings up from our elementary school. I'd had a rough day, I remember, and it was late in the school year, so I needed something good to happen to me. As I climbed into the car, my mother stopped and passed something back across the seat. 'Oh,' she said, 'this came for you in the mail today.' I usually never got mail myself, so this was a special event. It was a magazine -- it had my name and address in a label on the front, and a picture of a plastic Mario flying around with a raccoon tail over a fireball, coins, and a weird looking goomba. It was exactly what I needed, an unexpected bit of joy sent directly to me. I spent the whole rest of the weekend pouring over the gorgeous little horizontal maps of Super Mario Bros. 3." - Mike Schramm, Joystiq
"My fondest memory of Nintendo Power wasn't the strategy guides or the screenshots or even the hilariously over-the-top marketing copy that probably helped turn me into a Nintendo fanboy, but the comics! Howard & Nester was my version of Goofus and Gallant, Mario Adventures was my first real exposure to the now-ubiquitous anime.manga style, and the Zelda comic series actually created a stronger mythology than the actual games, I think. I only wish that the brief run of the Nintendo Comics System was nearly as good." - Kyle Orland, Ars Technica
"I began reading Nintendo Power from the moment I knew it existed. It was the first video game magazine I had ever seen, and its content inspired me to dream about someday getting a job reviewing video games. I read every page of every Nintendo Power front to back and then back to front. I hauled my collection around from apartment to apartment throughout the '80s and '90s until it was destroyed in a water leak here in the office. That truly broke my heart. Each issue had a ton of great stories and games to learn about, but perhaps my favorite thing about Nintendo Power was its strategy guides. These issues would recreate an entire world of my favorite video game screen by screen, showing me the game like I had never seen it before. It was mind-blowing. I would study those maps looking for secrets or a new power-up that would give me an edge. I honestly felt those pages were art of the highest caliber. Rest in peace Nintendo Power, you will always be adored in the hearts and minds of the gamers you helped define." - Andy McNamara, Game Informer
"This may be recent, but my girlfriend's nephew (8) got his first Nintendo Power subscription in December. Before then, I would give him back issues of the magazine, which he'd read cover-to-cover for hours. As an enormous Pokemon and Mario fan, he reminds me of myself when I was his age, when I used to absorb every ounce of every gaming magazine I could reach. Nintendo Power was an important part of my childhood just like it's become an important part of his, and it will be missed dearly." - Mike Suszek, Joystiq
"I remember reading about Final Fantasy 2 in the pages of Nintendo Power at the tender age of twelve or so and wondering, "How is this number two if it's the final fantasy?" I finally pieced together the truth of the matter, but what 12-year-old me didn't know was that 33-year-old me would still be witnessing the release of not-final Final Fantasy games far, far in the future and that Nintendo Power would last that long." - Chris Grant, Polygon
"I never actually was a big Nintendo Power reader growing up, but I do remember one particular issue giving me the skinny on one of my favorite games of all time: Battletoads. It was June and I was just getting out of school, and the corner store I used to hit up for my $.25 bag of Doritos and $.10 huggie for the hot summer walk home had the Battletoads issue sitting right there on the magazine rack. I thumbed through the issue for a while, much to the dismay of the shop owner and my friends who eventually went on without me. It was that issue that turned me on to the game and eventually I convinced my parents to buy it for me." - Dave Hinkle, Joystiq
"Like Dave, I was never a huge Nintendo Power reader. After the NES, I graduated to the Sega Genesis, and thus had a subscription to Sega Visions. Still, I think most of us remember the cover for issue #1, which featured Mario and King Wart modeled out of clay. If I recall correctly, that image was used on the Nintendo Power subscription cards that were stuffed in the boxes of new NES games. I certainly read many issues of Nintendo Power in my day, but that one image has always stuck with me." - Richard Mitchell, Joystiq
"Growing up in Tokyo, Japan, getting my hands on an issue of Nintendo Power was a rare treat, as it wasn't available there. Still, I was able to have issues imported, and I showed them off to anyone and everyone I knew. I couldn't believe that there was a magazine solely about video games. Why would you want to read anything else? I treated issues like treasures, making sure friends and visitors carefully turned the pages. When they weren't being used they were displayed on a shelf alongside my Nintendo and Famicom cartridges and my Game & Watch collection. I still have most of them, though the pages are falling out, and all those corners I made sure to protect are now creased. These and their cousins, the Nintendo Power Official Guides, will always remain in my collection. And no, you can't look at them." - Dale North, Destructoid