It’s Only a Magazine!

I have just bought the 100th issue of the Official UK PlayStation 2 Magazine, which also happens to be the last ever issue… and I feel so inexplicably sad! I mean, I expected to feel a bit sad at the demise of this fine publication – I have, after all, been buying it, except for a couple of breaks, for getting on for the last six years… but not this sad! It is, like someone on the OPS2 Facebook group recently said, like the last day of school – it’s that kinda sad! It’s not just about the magazine, it’s about the people – some of whom you may stay in contact with, but never again in that context. Because OPS2 was about the people – I have, for example, had quite a few letters printed therein over the last couple of years and consequently developed a bit of a pleasant chattiness with one Ms Kim Richards, the Editorial Assistant. I’ll miss our occasional exchanges of words, Kim, over what free games you have to offer, our tastes in reading matter, etc! And I’ll miss, amongst other things, your unabashed enthusiasm for Jap-RPG’s! And of course I’ll miss the delightful presences of your colleagues, Andy, Mark, Sophie, et al, as well as past heroes such as “gorgeous” George!

Of course, the world moves on… next-gen becomes present-gen, which will ultimately fall into the annals of past-gen… it’s all PS3 now, and Wii and Xbox360! What has been will be no more, or at least it will be redefined as “retro” – which in itself is no bad thing, but… I still yearn for the things of the past!

I have not yet read OPS2#100… I have started to, but… I can hardly bring myself to do so… because once I have read that last review, that last preview, that last reader’s letter… and that final little photo-montage, describing, with that inimitable ironic/sarcastic/wry humour which has become the trademark of OPS2 and which I will miss so much, how the final trio of stalwarts, Andy, Mark and Kim, put together an issue of OPS2… once that last page has been turned and the lovingly thumbed mag is put on the shelf, eventually to find itself in the recycle bin or a doctor’s surgery or at a carboot sale… that will be it! No more! Finito! And things of that nature!

I have already started to suggest on the OPS2 Facebook group (which will apparently continue to run, perhaps indefinitely) that we should, therein, continue to honour the traditions of OPS2, vis á vis continuing their most enduring and endearing features – in this way we can hopefully keep the spirit of OPS2 alive… and show those next-gen-ophiles that we PS2 fans are not to be washed away by the inexorable tide of hi-tech-y-ness! Or something. And in this fashion we can all climb to the rooftops (metaphorically speaking) and shout the following phrase (which I have already mentioned a couple of times on Facebook, so hopefully it’s beginning to lodge in people’s consciousness)…

OPS2 is dead! Long live OPS2!

*   *   *

nb. As regular readers of my blog will know, I don’t presently own a working PS2, and haven’t for the past three-and-a-half weeks (ish), so you might be wondering why I am expressing here such determination to keep the memory/spirit of the official mag of said console alive. Well, it’s like this… (a) inasmuch as I will be a dad soon, and no doubt my priorities and things will change significantly in the ensuing weeks/months/years, the demise of OPS2 has made me realise how much I do enjoy playing on this console, that there are so many good games out there I am yet to play, and therefore I consider it pretty likely that I will replace said pleasure-giving machine at some point in the hopefully not too distant future – because although my dadhood will probably mean a reduction in the amount of hours I spend on the PS2, the thought of the possibility of not spending any hours on it… is a thought I don’t want to think about!… (b) as I said above, it’s not just about the magazine! It’s about the lovely/funny/enthusiastic people who made it happen! So the fact that it’s a mag about PlayStation 2 is almost irrelevant… & (c) it’s a matter of principle! Why does everything have to be about the latest, the shiniest, the most hi-tech? The PS2 is still extremely popular! There are still new games being released, to be reviewed and previewed and get excited about! And don’t even get me started on the back catalogue, which is of such a vastness that hundreds of pages could still be written about it, in one form or another! So it’s a principle that goes beyond PlayStation… it’s a principle about keeping the pleasures of the past alive!

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7 comments on “It’s Only a Magazine!

  1. […] Still Only a Magazine! [ being the sequel to It’s Only a Magazine! […]

  2. Chris says:

    I didn’t realise it was the last ever issue, I only picked it up today after failing to find it last thursday, but I had foreseen this happening, as pretty much the same thing happened to it’s predecessor mag. I’m unfortunatley not in 100% agreement with you, I still love my ps2 but I only find myself going back to it for my guitar hero fixes (and just preordered aerosmith) but I havent been playing alot of my other games, some of which are still waiting for that intial boot up (persona 3, ffxii, rogue galaxy and rule of rose imported.) I do wonder though, without the magazine there to cover what little they have, are all these other coming games going to dissapear, GHL: world tour, Yakuza 2 (due out september) and Ghostbusters for example, I certainly hope not because though I have moved onto ‘current’ gen, I’d still like to play these games.

  3. pepsoid says:

    Chris… are you on Facebook, perchance? If so, I implore you to join the OPS2 Facebook group (link below) for answers to the above and other pertinent questions!

    http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2388211172

    (if not, don’t worry, I’ll pop over there now and pose your questions on your behalf)

  4. […] or… the ultimate accolade… sends you a lovely free PS2 game! Which is another reason I’m sad at the demise of OPS2… Published […]

  5. Gareth says:

    It’s a pity that OPS2 did not outlast its predecessor. OPS1 magazine published 108 issues. However, I can’t say that I liked it much. The writing often seemed to be juvenile, obsessed with wrestling and crime-based games, at the expense of other game styles. I recall an event in WH Smith a few years ago when a mother refused to buy a copy for her son (who looked about 10-13 years old) because she claimed it was full of swear words and ‘obscene’ content (porn ads, probably). I can’t say that I blamed her. It seemed to target the 15-20 age range for most of its lifetime
    (although I’m amused that the 15 age rating on the final issue cover is at odds with the child-friendly approach they’ve taken since the A4 redesign).

    Future seem to have learned the lesson of launching a magazine for a specific machine. They’ve taken the US approach of launching a multi-format playstation magazine that covers PS3, PS2 and PSP. It could theoretically cover the PS4 and PS5 when they are launched.

  6. pepsoid says:

    Just so you know, Chris, I got the following responses to your wonderings on Facebook…

    From Chris Osborne…

    “I’m sure the games will continue despite the closure of OPS2. Guitar Hero 3 had greater success on PS2 than any other format so that series is likely to continue and it appears the Ghostbusters game is some way into development so I doubt that will be canceled. Unfortunately, I think Yakuza 2 will be one of those titles that is pushed back, then pushed back a little further and before you know it has vanished from pre-release lists.

    Interestingly, play.com list the forthcoming Call of Duty 5 for PS2, so who knows, perhaps come Christmas those still in PS2land will have a real biggie to look forward too…”

    And from Kim Richards…

    “Tomb Raider Underworld is indeed coming to PS2. I even have a packshot of it…Crash Bandicoot Mind Over Mutant and the last installment of the Legend of Spyro are also coming. Can’t remember anything else off the top of my head.”

  7. Haz says:

    Ah, i didn’t purchase the last issue!

    I must ‘borrow’ it off a friend! I didn’t realise it was the last issue! But at least some of the old OPS2 staff now work at Official Playstation Magazine UK (Tim, one of the previous editors.) The spirit of OPS2 will live on via OPM!

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