January Magazines (MarkUp 11, GMTech 10)

January is quite an interesting time of the year to look at the magazines. Both because of the possibility of the magazines introducing new features and changes, and because over the Christmas period there could have been either a torrent or lack of submissions depending on the particular contributers.

Jan 2007 Magazines

Download MarkUp Issue 11 | Download GMTech Issue 10

I’ll start with MarkUp as this was, as usual, the first to be released. Issue 11s was billed as a “quick mini-issue” to announce the results of The Game Maker Race the competition run by both magazines. The best word to describe the cover is interesting. It isn’t like anything I’ve seen on MarkUp, or indeed anywhere else, before. I don’t particularly like that. But then I don’t like the government and I’ve managed to live with them for a while. The main content consists of a bumper 6 pages on the making of Ark22, a staff’s choice at the GMC. Very good.

Now I think I will comment on the design. In comes another new design (nothing stays the same for long at MarkUp!) and it’s blue. Blue being the colour of GameMakerTech. But it is a nice design, and they’ve stuck with the two column layout.

The remainder of the articles are all one pagers. “Sim City Societies” marks a return to the “we are a Game Maker magazine but that was a good game” days of the past. I agree not everything in the magazine should be directly related to Game Maker. There should be content about creating resources and promoting games however this I’m afraid commercial none-game-maker games don’t really have a place in MarkUp.

At 18 pages it’s the shortest MarkUp for a while, whilst this was meant to be some on the GMC didn’t appear to be to happy.

GameMakerTech has a seasonal cover! A big change from last months Caribbean island. This issue offers an “exclusive interview with Mark Overmars, the creator of Game Maker” as part of its 44 pages. Sounds good. A rather impressive list of 16 staff members is listed.

The “What’s Going On” page also gives us an insight into the magazines latest projects, a Wiki and on a break that they are taking (yep, sounds familiar). Content wise GMTech looks very similar to previous issues of MarkUp, with less reviews and more editorials than normal. Included is (another) interview with FredFredrickson, what a novel idea. I didn’t read all of the editorials, but there are lots of them. There are also a good number of tutorials, complete with colourful code. The good spriting tutorials also continue with a “how to create weapons” piece by Medieval.

The exclusive interview with Mark Overmars which may have attracted some people to the release covers two pages. The first question being about Mark’s retirement. A great interviewing technique. Not. Mark reveals that his vision is for YoYo Games to become a “YouTube for Games” – something which I first mentioned several months back.

GameMakerTech have introduced “Insight Into” articles – their answer to MarkUp’s Development Journals. This frustrates me, but I won’t post about it now. With only 3 game reviews this is not the GameMakerTech of old this is G a m e M a r k U p e r T e c h.

Gamez has informed me that “the scores” are at 1-1 following last months releases. I think he has let his GMB point go to his head. I wasn’t really think of the magazines on a points basis, but what he says is true – of the November and December offerings I favoured GMTech’s and MarkUp’s offerings respectively.

The better magazine this month is GMTech – there is no question of that. We’ll have to wait until mid-Feb for the next magazine release – MarkUp’s 12th issue to be followed in March by GMTech’s 11th.

What do you think?

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  1. I think the Mark up magazine and its message is excellent. If people want to live together before they get married, they should be able to without it being illegal.
    Welldone Markup.

  2. Yeah, like Eyas said, we weren’t going to have an issue 11 for the longest while…and then we got board πŸ™‚

    I must admit I didn’t give Eyas much support on this issue, so, any shortcomings are my fault πŸ™

    I personally don’t like the cover, it was a bit…well…gothic for me. But I’m keen on feel-good covers anyways, so I thought it’d be good to get some reaction to other covers. Oh, also, the layout is actually the same, just the winter header/footers were replaced with more non-seasonal standbys; we’re hoping to leave the basic layout of the magazine alone now. MUST NOT ADJUST….MUST N…Oooo…..TTT!

    But, I think we’ve missed the most point here, it’s what is in everybody’s minds….When is the next issue of GnaZine coming?!?! πŸ™‚


  3. I missed one:
    “The player occasionally needs to make ice blocks to
    get over high obstacles, but most of the time [subject?] needs to use…”
    (Your compound verb is pretending to be a dependent clause.)

    Wow, this is fun! I should do this more often. XD But alas, I need to go to bed.

  4. Here are some paragraphs from the description of The Meltdown. I noted errors with brackets.

    “The Meltdown is a game designed for the MarkUp/GMTech
    Fire and Ice contest. Since the contest requires a theme
    related to the subject of fire and ice, the game obviously
    somehow [bad modifier use] relates to it: in its case, the player controls,
    surprise [not an appositive but used as one], the fire and ice. One can change to fire or ice at any
    time: fire is the offensive, ice is the defensive: [two colon conjunctions] the first one
    can shoot fire at enemies; [enough conjunctions already!] the second can build ice blocks
    (and freeze existing ones).

    The levels consist of solid blocks that cannot melt, [conjunction without clause] and ice
    blocks. The player occasionally needs to make ice blocks to
    get over high obstacles, but most of the time needs to use
    fire to kill enemies, [conjunction without clause] that are the following: a flying enemy,
    that shoots at the player [not a noun clause, but used as one], a flying enemy that can’t cause
    direct offense to the player, but drops ice-melting blocks [series punctuated incorrectly],
    and a walking enemy in the style of a Goomba from Mario

    The graphics consist of particle effects and solid colors. They
    fit the theme of the game, although [subject here?] could be less repetitive: [weird conjunction use – not sure if correct or not]
    The Meltdown can get a bit repetitive during the course of
    the game in other aspects too. It certainly needs some
    improvement to keep the player entertained: for example,
    powerups [not a complete sentence]. There are also some bad examples of English in the text. The engine is very bug-free.”

    I’m not sure if I graded that perfectly (I’m not an English teacher πŸ˜› ), but I think you get the idea.

  5. I don’t like to be negative, but although the content was good, MarkUp Issue 11 was painful to read because of the rampant grammatical errors. (Tuntis’ work in particular needed better proofreading.)

    I don’t understand the obsession with the magazine covers. I mean, shinies are nice, but personally, I think I might prefer the terminal-style format (like 2600) better.

  6. I can’t say we didn’t say “GMTech Wins” coming, but we weren’t planning on releasing a jan issue in the first place, so yeah. A 2-week issue with some contents is much better than a 1-page PDF with the competition results, doncha think? πŸ˜›

  7. ‘Insight Into’ – We have been doing this for some time, we just changed the name, and added an ‘Exclusive’ section.

    Well I thought you was comparing the magazine, since thats you set them out like this for the last two issues both mags released.

    Not many people were submiting reviews, in total we actually had 5, if you count the two exclusives, which is around the normal about of reveiws that we have. Did you want more.

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