Why we do what we do :
Too keep it brief, for the love of the content in question.
We want to preserve something which is starting to get swept away in the digital age.
The more that time passes, the harder it becomes to locate these classic magazines. And due to the fragile nature it will only get more difficult as time passes.
So by creating digital duplicates we try to save the content and spirit of the original publication, even though it's very hard to recreate the spirit of the magazines when read on a computer screen. That's why we do our best to portray them in such a way that does the original version as well as the original editors, writers, publishers and everyone who created them proud, by cleaning up the spots, blemishes, discolorations, creases and other imperfections that time has added to them.
Our stance on donations :
We do not accept money in any form, be it as gifts or as some kind of subscription fee.
Such a thing leans a bit too close to getting paid to put this content online, which is certainly not our intention. We do it out of love and respect for the people who originally created the content and will not profit from it on their behalves.
We will accept magazines as donations. Keep in mind that donating magazines will not grant you any kind of special privileges on the site itself nor on the message board.
What it possibly will do is make you feel good, knowing that you are a part of the preservation of these magazines.
Where to find the full magazine downloads?
As you can see, there are plenty of articles online to read directly from the website.
Yet, these are only small sections of the magazines in question.
Every article on the site should have a red link underneath the page, unless the magazine hasn't been scanned in its entirety, then it should be orange.
These links will take you to the magazine catalogue where you will find a list of content as well as additional data concerning the publication.
Beneath the cover picture you will find either a single or several links to the full magazine scan.
In case the links come in several parts, which means that the size of the magazine was too large to upload in one piece, you'll have to download both parts to be able to join the file and then unzip the magazine.
CBZ, zip and .001 files, and what to do with them.
When you have downloaded a magazine you will either end up with a regular zip file or with two or more .001 .002 files.
All you need to do is unpack the zip file to get to the cbz file.
With for example winzip on Windows. On Mac you won't need a dedicated program to unpack zip files.
Once you have the cbz file, you will need a comic book reader program to open them.
In case you don't want to install such a program, you can always unpack the cbz just like you would a zip file. Comic book readers do offer a much friendlier way to browse through magazines though, so we certainly recommend you use one.
For Windows we recommend ComicRack.
For Mac we recommend Comicbooklover Comicbooklover
, which costs $25, or FFView,which is freeware.
Quality of the scans:
We believe that presenting the magazines in the best possible way is our obligation, not only to do justice to the work itself but to show our respect for all the people who originally created them.
The quality of the scans on the site itself, meaning the online articles is not to be mistaken with the quality of the complete magazine scans which you can find in the magazine catalogue section.
The scans on the site have been down-sampled to a width of 900 pixels due to bandwidth constraints on our end, but also on the visitors end. That way you won't have to wait a minute for a scan to load even if you are on a slow connection.
The complete magazines we present have a minimum width of 1136 and go up to 2560 for the highest quality versions, depending on when the magazine in question was scanned and edited.
We are always looking into improving the quality of these magazines and will re-scan issues if we have the ability to provide higher quality versions of them.
A lot also depends on the state the magazines are in when we acquire them. Sometimes it's simply impossible to clean up badly damaged issues.
But we assure you that if we get hold of an issue that is in better condition than a previous version we have online, we will do our best to have a superior version online.
Every magazines requires a different approach to editing them due to differences in not only the quality in paper, the age of the magazine and the level of discoloration that happened throughout the years, but also depending on the layout of the pages.
We have included a size scale on each content page next to the cover, so that you will be able to know at which resolution the magazine is presented before downloading.
Why can't I download magazines directly from the site?
This goes back to our stance on donations.
Having people download hundreds of magazines on a daily basis from the servers would cost money, lots of money.
Since we don't accept monetary donations and everything is paid out of our own pockets, putting the files on our own servers just isn't feasible.
So we have decided to use a filehost for our file distribution. While it's not the perfect solution by any means, it is a fair one as it provides the downloads to everyone without exception, and without any costs to the visitors.
Will you scan this month's article from xXx for me?
No, we will not. Plain and simple.
Like we state on the front page, we are not here to harm any publisher, editor or writer by duplicating magazines which are in publication. So we won't scan new magazines in any form, partially or in full, unless the publisher gives us written permission to do so.
We have set a limit as to what magazines are eligible to be scanned and have chosen the a certain date (December 1999) to make a clear statement that we have no intention to cause anyone financial or professional harm. There are a couple of exceptions to this 1999 rule though, and as the years go by this might change a little with time itself.
But I see Dreamcast scans on the site?
Yes you do.
That is the one exception to the rule.
Due to the dreamcast being launched in the west just prior to the year 2000, the bulk of its magazines fall outside our "no scans for for magazines after the year 1999" statement.
Yet due to the system being in such a strange position during and even after it's short lifespan, coupled with it being one of the last systems that takes a kind of retro sensibility to heart,
as well as being the very last Sega system, we decided to include Dreamcast only magazines on the site as well.
The reason we are not including multi-platform magazines that cover the Dreamcast and its games, is because that would create a vicious circle of sorts, making it harder to take a clear stance on what we will scan and what we won't.
Some of these guidelines look familiar somehow…
That certainly doesn't surprise us.
We have many years of work on this project behind us now, even before starting the Out-of-Print Archive.
We have been the founders of many of the rules and guidelines that we still follow to this very day, and we have fought hard for them in the past even though there has been a lot of opposition from certain parties inside the community itself on many occasions.
We have also laid the groundwork for a system that we hope shows publishers and editors that we are wanting to work with them, not against them.
Trying to contact publishers and editors, and being completely honest and sincere in making our intentions clear being one of them.
Making sure this project is built upon respect is another requirement for us.
As we have stated many times before, this is a labor of love and there is no place for ulterior motives.
We want to make sure that many years from now people will still be able to read and enjoy these amazing time capsules of gaming.
To get back to the original point, we see no need to destroy the very foundation we helped create, and thereby betray our own personal beliefs and vision of where we want to take this project in the coming years, for the sole reason to show that we are different from a certain other site.
Putting up a mission statement with lots of fancy words and lofty goals sure looks good on first sight, and might make us feel all good about ourselves, but such a thing is meaningless when it's not genuine. This very point played a huge part in us leaving the past behind and starting our own site, as well as the reason why we no longer wish to be associated in any way with the previous site we worked with.
When you say something in public because it makes you look noble and sincere, but deliberately do the exact opposite of what you say in places hidden from the public eye, all those pretty words lose any meaning they might once have had.
Sometimes you will find things we do or say at Out-of-Print Archive are perhaps not the things you want to hear, but you can rest assured that what we say is how we feel, without having any hidden agenda.
This is, and always will be about preserving classic video game magazines to the best of our abilities. And we won't let Out-of-Print Archive be drawn into a race for bragging rights to see how many releases an individual can attain.
The pursuit of such a insignificant goal would only have one result: lowering the quality of digital versions of the magazines we are trying to preserve. Which in turn would be, to say it mildly, disrespectful to every single person who ever worked on creating one of these magazines for a living.
This in not about numbers, this is not about ego's, not about internet fame, this is about doing the right thing for the right reasons.
So we hope that when you take the time to get to know us a bit better, you will see that what we've created with Out-of-Print Archive, as well as what we have written on these pages comes straight from the heart.