Points of View
Points of View, the all-reviewer summary of an issue's games, was another innovative thing we did that other people stole.
Amiga Concept, for instance. Ironically.
Essentially a large table cross-referencing each game with every reviewer, Points of View was also the most conspicuous platform for competitive writing between the mighty beings. Not only did you have to encapsulate your thoughts on a game in the space of at most six (extremely short) words, you had to make your line funnier than anyone else's.
Here's a sample one. Of it.
The single permitted "Haven't played it" became a tactical weapon ("GAME A - Better than Game D/GAME B - No better than Game D/GAME C - Not as much fun as Game D/GAME D - Haven't played it", for instance) but it was the inspired introduction of a guest star that elevated our Points of View rushingly higher than any of its largely grim clones.
Amiga Concept's, say. Ironically.
Brought about by a reviewer's departure without time for the page to be redesigned, the guest star's comments, always appearing at the bottom of the group, became for many the highlight of the page, especially when we started doing dead people. We'd eagerly scan the morning headlines for news of a celebrity death that we could honour with five or six fun-packed sentences and the inevitable blank, black box and "Haven't played it" and it was a suspenseful few days as we waited as long as possible before the final deadline to be sure of a really first-class subject.
The form evolved remarkably quickly, from the guest, often merely someone who'd done something amusingly newsworthy, genuinely marking their games, to a dead celebrity just giving everything five stars so the joke stood out prominently on the appropriate red triangle backgrounds.
And with the final form came rules. Cam's rules, in fact. They were these:
1. No Britons.
More "rule" then, really.
It did, regrettably, deprive us of a few stars (Roy Castle, say, who would have appeared as "Tap/Tappity tap/Tappity tap tap/Tap... Tap Tap... Tappity.../Clunk/(Blank black box)/Haven't played it") but was undoubtedly a sensible, mature policy that prevented distress and rebuffed bad taste.
E'en now, with ourselves and the mag brutally slain, we can't read of the death of someone famous without automatically reducing their life to a series of zingy phrases.
So here's a complete list of Points of View guests. True, a little is lost by not seeing them in context (OJ's "Police Squad, more like" is prompted by Putty Squad, for example, and a particularly clever Walt Disney joke means nothing unless you know he was reviewing Pinkie in that column) but for the full effect each POV would have to be printed in its entirety, and who wants to read our opinions of Amiga games, eh? It never seemed to trouble you before.