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Game over for GameFan?
December 5th 2000, 04:11 CET by Andy

Has the GameFan saga finally come to an end?

According to a report on Gamers.com, "The entire GameFan staff was greeted with a Christmas bonus in the form of a pink slip on Friday".

Both the GameFan print magazine and web site have reportedly closed. (The site is still active, but hasn't been updated since last Thursday.)

There is no word yet on whether or not subscriptions to the print magazine will be refunded, as parent company Express.com couldn't be contacted.

Perhaps the important (and only?) question to ask here is, where did GameFan go wrong? Is the company's failure all down to the rumoured antics of a certain manager? Was there simply not enough money to be made from the target market? Feel free to spit forth your uninformed guesses...
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#1 by "asspennies"
2000-12-05 04:26:27
asspennies@somethingawful.com
Perhaps it was crossing Lowtax... *chuckle*

But really, it was simply overreaching that cost Gamefan in the end.  I think that's been made abundantly clear.
#2 by "Apache"
2000-12-05 04:32:43
apache@stomped.com
gamefan had nothing to do with it, express.com (the people who owe lowtax and all those other people so much money) is going out of bizness and no more money to pay the people at gamefan, either - hence it was 'shutdown'. Although sources close to the company have told me that they are already under the ownership and people were back in the office today.
#3 by "the_reformed_pianist"
2000-12-05 04:35:24
pianist@canada.com
THIRD POST!!!!!!!!!
#4 by "Apache"
2000-12-05 04:35:41
apache@stomped.com
translation (sorry, posted that too quickly):

gamefan had nothing to do with it, express.com (the people who owe lowtax and all those other people so much money) is going out of bizness and had no more money to pay the people at gamefan either - hence it was 'shutdown'. Although sources close to the company have told me that they are already under new ownership and people the were back in the office today working.
#5 by "Apache"
2000-12-05 04:36:34
apache@stomped.com
ugh, I give up, you know what I mean (need a edit comment feature).
#6 by "the_reformed_pianist"
2000-12-05 04:37:26
pianist@canada.com
Hi, we're The Andys and this one's called Quantity Over Quality. It's a smooth number, I think you'll enjoy it.

*drum intro*
#7 by "rizzuh"
2000-12-05 05:16:16
rze@counter-strike.net
the_reformed_pianist: I think I speak for everyone; shut the hell up.

Anyhow, I agree with Apache. GameFan magazine has been around for a while, all the troubles have orginated from express.com.
#8 by "the_reformed_pianist"
2000-12-05 05:40:34
pianist@canada.com
OUCH!!!!!! DISSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
#9 by "JMCDaveL"
2000-12-05 06:28:45
jmcdavel@mailandnews.com
I miss the old early 90's Gamefan magazine that was like a big advertisement for their retail store. Full of bizarre injokes and obscure japanese humor.  Almost as much as I miss the Pre-Doom II cover Computer Gaming World. Or when the uncola of computer mags was still called Computer Games Strategy Plus.

--jmc
~chu chu rocket~
#10 by "popchornmechanic"
2000-12-05 07:20:39
jderevyanny@hotmail.com
Shitty websites die.  Plus, whoever still visited Gamefan?  I only go to Ars-Technica  to get my gaming news :P
#11 by "Barneyque"
2000-12-05 07:56:18
barneyque@hotmail.com
Must we always focus on Andy?  Sometimes there's lots of news, somethimes there isn't.

I'm not a fan boy, but still, he did post nudies did he not?  That's got to count for some good karma points does it not?

As for the network, I thought they were one of a few sites that were trying to run on banners, but had loaded themselves down running non-paying ads.  You do that long enough, the bean counters notice.  Shit happens.

And that's my uninformed opinion for this story.  Heheh.

Next.
#12 by "SteveBauman"
2000-12-05 17:03:26
steve@manic-pop-thrills.com
There is no word yet on whether or not subscriptions to the print magazine will be refunded, as parent company Express.com couldn't be contacted.

What usually happens is another magazine buys the subscription list and transfers the subscriptions to their own (if the buyer has multiple publications, they'll often send a "take a pick" list of their publications). If people already receive the magazine, their subs are extended. If they do not want the magazine, they can get a refund.

For example, both of the subscribers to Incite PC now get Computer Games Magazine, as we bought their subscription list. (Okay, it was a few thousand people.) Imagine bought PC Games' list and gave them PC Accelerator, and when it shut down those people moved on to PC Gamer.
#13 by "JWC"
2000-12-05 20:45:26
jwc@syzygy-magazine.com
GameFan was easily the best magazine out there.  So if this is indeed true, it totally sucks.

Also, I'm not crazy about the smug tone that Gamers.com took with the little blurb they posted.
IMHO, losing a member of the gaming media would call for a slightly remorseful tone at least.  
But what can you expect from the online zines these days...

-JWC
#14 by "Fortyseven_BTEG"
2000-12-05 22:31:00
47@apple2.com
I just subscribed in June.  Hadn't gotten another issue after getting the two free issues.  Finally I contacted them, and she says "Your next issue is on the way!", back on the 28th of November.

I have a feeling it'll be a little longer than that now. :P

*sigh*...oh well, looking forward to either the refund, or browsing the list of mags of whoever buys their list...
#15 by "Intaglio"
2000-12-06 00:19:31
eric@gurutech.org
Also, I'm not crazy about the smug tone that Gamers.com took with the little blurb they posted.
IMHO, losing a member of the gaming media would call for a slightly remorseful tone at least.
But what can you expect from the online zines these days...

Especially since Gamers.com isn't expected to last another year.
#16 by "Skunk"
2000-12-06 00:30:47
skunk@gameplay.com
gamers.com isn't expected to last another year?  Where does that nugget of info come from?

Bah - looks like the whole games network bubble is starting to burst :o(
#17 by "gnoleb"
2000-12-06 00:47:06
gnoleb@pacbell.net
GameFan is the cockroach of the gaming industry. Apart from black jesus and his second coming, you can't kill it.
#18 by "Speed"
2000-12-06 01:53:13
speed@pandora.be
Gamefan the cockroach ? Who else aswell then ?
I never found Gamefan to have much content on itself, but neither do most network sites (anyone seen content on UGO lately ?)
Network sites depend on their hosted sites, and if those don't do it, no-one will. Gamefan had 2 good running sites (VoodooExtreme and SomethingAwful) and next to that there was nothing. I doubt 2 sites can uphold a whole network.
Independance 4 Evah !

Speed
Fragland.net
#19 by "RyslinANDIndigo"
2000-12-06 16:00:23
ryslinmoon@yahoo.com
sets large rabid dog out after pianist....

on topic this is sad,,thou i dont know much about gamefan...but if it wasnt thier fault directly you can just blame it on corperate dot com america
#20 by "webrunner"
2000-12-06 17:49:36
046105s@acadiau.ca
I thought everyone blamed it on that subspace guy?
#21 by "JMCDaveL"
2000-12-06 20:22:36
jmcdavel@mailandnews.com
Only 20 comments in before someone mentions Trixter..agh.

--jmc
~konlp~
#22 by "Bait"
2000-12-07 05:01:42
admlin@hotmail.com
That mag has been dead since the mid 90's.  Time for it
and their staff to take a dirt nap!

-Bait-
#23 by "Vandal"
2000-12-07 09:14:27
tohle@hgames.com
Especially since Gamers.com isn't expected to last another year.

Personally, I'd have to say that Gamers.com is one of the more stable internet gaming magazines out there. They got rid of the GXNetwork, which was a great move business-wise, and now they can focus on the core site (Gamers.com) and Firingsquad, both highly successful sites. I wouldn't be surprised if the next major network to go down was UGO. They were throwing money around that they barely had.

Gamefan made several mistakes that loads of networks are making. They're expanding too fast. If you have upwards of 50 sites on a network, there's no way you're going to cover the costs. Advertisers will only be drawn to your top sites. Granted, the whole Express.com fiasco was basically the nail in the coffin, but it all started with the GF Network. It was a high-cost / low-return venture. The networks that will succeed are ones with only a couple sites that draw decent traffic. For us (Gamersclick.com), we're basically only going to be aiming to cover our costs. It's all homegrown content, done by a few people (no matter what you say, you don't need 50 people to run a friggin website... 3 can do it just fine), and we're not about to go out and quit our day jobs. People are finally getting raped by the system, and I'm glad that advertisers and such are finally realizing that websites don't generate income.

Well, I sort of got off on a rant there, but I think you get the idea.
#24 by "WarrenMarshall"
2000-12-07 10:53:40
warren@epicgames.com
Vandal (#23):
I wouldn't be surprised if the next major network to go down was UGO. They were throwing money around that they barely had.

Score it underground!!

---

Warren Marshall
Level Designer/Programmer/Corporate Shill
Epic Games (www.epicgames.com)
#25 by "pg19"
2000-12-08 06:34:20
pgharavi@home.com
Tom Ohle 4 Life!!!!!!!
#26 by "Apache"
2000-12-08 07:12:55
apache@stomped.com
Personally, I'd have to say that Gamers.com is one of the more stable internet gaming magazines out there. They got rid of the GXNetwork, which was a great move business-wise, and now they can focus on the core site (Gamers.com) and Firingsquad, both highly successful sites. I wouldn't be surprised if the next major network to go down was UGO. They were throwing money around that they barely had.


Erm yeah -- having 100 people working on a site that gets less hits than most of the big news sites who employ less than five people is a GREAT business!!!
#27 by "pg19"
2000-12-08 19:30:04
pgharavi@home.com
What I want to know Apache, if you consider yourself an actual journalist...?

I mean, who else has the verbal and technical prowess to post screenshots all day...

everyday.
#28 by "Apache"
2000-12-08 20:47:12
apache@stomped.com
What I want to know Apache, if you consider yourself an actual journalist...?


Why would I want to consider myself a journalist? Is that a "cool" job, or something?
#29 by "Anonymous"
2001-04-09 12:08:46
Thinking...
#30 by "spaceguy fan"
2005-04-25 15:20:30
Hi, I have been looking everywhere, anyways does anyone know whoo was the artist for GameFan's spaceguy mascot, you know the opne with the TV head? What ever did happen to him anyways, didn't he use to be on the sci-fi channel?
#31 by jjohnsen
2005-04-25 19:17:25
http://www.johnsenclan.com
I believe his name was Warren Marshall, and yes he is still a big part of the Sci Fi channel.

Actually, the liberalism of the media - as a general thing - IS a major fallacy. What the media is, is a whore.  -LP
#32 by "Anonymous"
2005-04-25 23:39:12
I think it's Terry Wolfinger, he's the one that created SpaceGuy I think.
#33 by "spaceguy fan"
2005-04-26 20:34:23
I couldn't find much about Warren Marshall, but i did find a site of terry wolfinger, but no mention of GameFan's spaceguy, so I dunno. I couldn't even find any images of the mascot.
#34 by Penguinx
2005-04-26 20:40:56
I'm pretty sure the dude's name is Jon Larkin.

Disenchanted, Lunatic Fringe 2005
#35 by "dc"
2005-04-26 21:32:29
he used tto belong to sci-fi, then gamefan brought him but then when they went down sci-fi bought him back. as for who made him and where you can find more images of him, i have totally no idea :( but lettme know whewn you find them
#36 by jjohnsen
2005-04-28 15:20:02
http://www.johnsenclan.com
I couldn't find much about Warren Marshall, but i did find a site of terry wolfinger, but no mention of GameFan's spaceguy, so I dunno. I couldn't even find any images of the mascot.

My bad, my bad.  You may want to go with Penguin's suggestion.

Actually, the liberalism of the media - as a general thing - IS a major fallacy. What the media is, is a whore.  -LP
#37 by "spaceguy fan"
2005-04-30 04:26:21
muscled.dude@gmail.com http://php-net.net/
There was even less I found on Jon Larkin. Oh well, and yes if anyone has any big screenshots of GameFan's old magazine covers and or advertisements with that spaceguy, email them to me sometime, thanks.

And at dc: no I dont think the sci-fi channel owned spaceguy, although he may have been advertised on some commercials for GameFan.
#38 by BobJustBob
2005-04-30 04:37:51
You mean Google doesn't lead one to Jon Larkin's entire life history? I have been misinformed!

"he runs like dumbass, and jumps like moron" - fallen_child, GameFAQs
#39 by Dumdeedum
2005-04-30 04:56:18
http://www.dumdeedum.com
I almost feel sort of bad for this guy, so innocent, so trusting...

Spaceguy fan: fifteen minutes googling confirm that "dc" is probably right and Terry Wolfinger is the guy who created the mascot, which as far as I can tell is named either "minotaur" or the unfortunate "monitaur".  Anyway the obvious solution to your problem would be to email the dude and ask him for any copies he might have.

#40 by Penguinx
2005-05-01 02:49:33
For the record, Jon Larkin is a happily married board regular who...
#41 by BobJustBob
2005-05-01 03:05:24
...won't talk about his kinks (pregnant women into ATM, btw).

"he runs like dumbass, and jumps like moron" - fallen_child, GameFAQs
#42 by Matt Davis
2005-05-01 13:09:36
http://looroll.com
Keep away from my wife!

#43 by jjohnsen
2005-05-01 18:49:50
http://www.johnsenclan.com
Pregnant women are sexy, I may partially share that kink.

Actually, the liberalism of the media - as a general thing - IS a major fallacy. What the media is, is a whore.  -LP
#44 by Matt Davis
2005-05-01 21:53:03
http://looroll.com
I have to say that I find my wife really sexy at the moment and she's four months pregnant. But I can't say I find any other pregnant woman attractive.

#45 by VeeSPIKE
2005-05-01 22:57:39
At least, not where your wife might hear.

The media doesn't educate, it sensationalizes. That's why there's no learning curve, just repeated bouts of gross stupidity. Bailey
#46 by G-Man
2005-05-02 00:35:39
#37 "spaceguy fan"
There was even less I found on Jon Larkin. Oh well, and yes if anyone has any big screenshots of GameFan's old magazine covers and or advertisements with that spaceguy, email them to me sometime, thanks.

A Google image search turned up these (in fact this site has a ton of covers - but all low res), but I don't know more about the story behind the mascot. There was a huge Gamefan history thread that popped up not too long ago though. It is probably still online - maybe search Slashdot Games for it? Someone might have talked about the mascot guy there. Finally, Shidoshi is active on a lot of forums still talking about Gamefan stuff and you can find him all over the place if you Google. He also runs a website here which is supposed to become an archive of Gamefan history. Maybe you could email him? Or you could ask this guy, Gregory Han who was the Senior Graphic Designer for Gamefan, and might even be the guy behind the mascot.
#47 by G-Man
2005-05-02 00:37:34
Or just do what Dum said since he is a better googler than me (but not a better linker).
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