I’m the proud owner of an extensive RPG magazine collection. The first white Dwarf I ever bought was issue 23, and up until about issue 100 I’d have to say that’s an awesome repository of gaming goodness. But the weird thing is, as much as I loved the mags, and very much regret their passing, it’s the odd little bits of them I remember the most.
I don’t really recall the scenarios, or the new classes, or the monsters or the magic items. What I remember best are the letters, the adverts, the editorials and the reviews. These were always the parts I’d read first, and the ones I’d return to. I think it’s because all of them feel like the writer is having a discussion with me. They’re personal.
Back in the pre-net days of fanzines there was a clear distinction between those that were Hard (ie full of what would now be called crunch) and those that were Soft (or, fluff). I liked Soft more.
It’s the same with DDI nowadays, I love Ampersand, and I largely ignore the Class articles.
It even extends to hard copy RPG books. My faves always have designers notes or sidebars. They are usually more entertaining and insightful than the main content.
Maybe it’s becasue I like talking about games almost as much as I like playing them? Certainly it’s one of the main drivers of this blog.
Just a thought…