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Celebrating 30 years (and 132 days) since being first
No no. No, no no no. No, no no no. That is not John Davison
As many will be aware, this year marks the 30th since the first issue of PC Zone appeared on the nation’s newsstands. Until very recently however, no one could be sure when precisely the mag was first squeezed out. The assumption was that it must have been during March 1993, since the first issue was, of course, the April issue, and as all magazine readers know, the streetdate is always a good few weeks after going to press. It was probably a Thursday – PC Zone always went out on what we now call “the new Friday” – but we just didn’t know which one.
Anyway, the mystery of when PC Zone was born has just been solved, thanks to the investigations of a top bloke called Paul Monaghan. As well as the editor of Pixel Addict magazine, Paul is one of the hosts of the Maximum Power Up podcast and a huge fan of Dennis Publishing’s games mags (all games mags, to be fair). Paul was scouring through his back issues of Game Zone magazine – the console-focused precursor of PC Zone – and found this rather splendid house ad:
Seems a bit odd to be hammering on console games in a console mag that very few serious PC games players would have read; but there we have it in black, white and a tasetful splash of pink: PC Zone’s birthday is March 4th. Yes, a Thursday. (No Limit was no.1 in the charts, if you we’re wondering. )
It was apt that the ad came to light just this past weekend at The PC Zone Classic, an event held in London to celebrate, belatedly, PC Zone’s landmark birthday – and to which Paul was cordially invited.
He wasn’t the only one, of course, with anyone and everyone who had half a connection to Zone invited to attend. Former editors, writers, designers, ad sales staff, plus friends and foes from other titles came in their dozens. Most looking rather greyer since last they were together, but who all seemed genuinely thrilled to be out after dark without having to worry about picking up their teenage offspring from the local police station.
I won’t bore you with how the evening went, but there was a lot of “Oooh, you haven’t changed a bit!” and, “Is that Charlie Brooker over there looking like someone pissed on his shoes?” Instead, let me post a few choice pics courtesy of some of the few attendees who could be bothered to get their phones out.
In that last one above you’ll recognise one or two faces, I’m sure. The guy on the right however is not former PC Zone editor John Davison. (John couldn’t make it, unfortunately.) They do look quite similar, don’t they? But, no, that’s Chris Morphy-Godber, an honourary PC Zone Team member on account of the fact he will be contributing to this blog on occasion. He is one of the biggest PC Zone nerds you’ll ever encounter and a very good writer in that he can effortlessly adopt the rambling stream-of-consciousness style that Zone was famous for. Don’t worry, you will see evidence of it soon enough.
So, happy birthday PC Zone, thanks for reading then and now, welcome Chris and, as ever, fuck PC Gamer!