In the days before the “mighty” Internet, the only way we could keep track of new games, hardware reviews and drool over what was coming up was through traditional magazines - and you know what? I still read them to this day. Magazines you see, were simple to “pick up and read”. No chargers, no USB sockets, portable and easy to find your place in. Take them and soak up the sun in the garden, read them on the go or simply run a nice warm bath and read them in there. Magazines were simple and no nonsense.
If, like me, you grew up in the eighties, you might have even spent all your paper round money on them. One magazine I used to love was “Your Computer” which ran from 1981 until right up until 1988. YC was a multi-format magazine that covered most, if not all of the (home) computers at that time. But, it wasn't just computer reviews. There were games that you could type in yourself (if only I had the patience!). There were free gifts such as “flexi” records that believe it or not, you could load from your hifi system.
Speaking of which, in the latter years, demo tapes and floppy discs adorned the front covers enabling you to check out the latest games! (And I never tired of collecting them). Many magazines such as ZZAP64 and Amiga User also contained playable demos of the first level of an impending game release as well as non commercial “gems” from the magazine itself.
These days of course, you can always search online for information about your trusty Commodore machine or listen to podcasts and “swot up” on it. But for me, I still sometimes prefer the joy of sitting down with a cuppa, feet up on the hearth and flicking through an old magazine. You see, that's the difference. With a magazine you didn't necessarily look up a particular piece of information or article but often just browsed aimlessly, hopping between the latest news, reading the game reviews and admiring some of the amazing artwork from the advertisers. (Imagine and Ultimate Play the Game being two of my favourites)
So, the internet is truly a wonderful thing for us “old faithfuls” and we couldn't live without it now...but sometimes, just sometimes, it just doesn't scratch the itch we so often have to flick through and browse, and for that, the original magazines just can't be beaten!