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Best Buy Co. Inc. announced Friday that it had launched a videogame magazine, called @Gamer.
The magazine will feature reviews and — importantly, for the Richfield, Minn.-based retailer — exclusive offers for purchases at Best Buy.
The model borrows a page from Minneapolis-based Game Informer, which is owned by game retailer Game Stop.
The clout of Best Buy will likely give @Gamer some heft, but Game Informer is one of the largest consumer magazines in the United States by circulation, with audited circulation of more than 3.5 million (it ranked No. 12, ahead of Time and Sports Illustrated last year). Game Informer’s distribution is driven, in part, by its connection to Game Stop, which bundles a subscription with a $15 loyalty card that also includes discounts and trade-in perks.
Best Buy will charge $19.99 annually for subscriptions (the in-store edition is priced at $5.99). Issues will contain discounts on games and gaming accessories (worth $20 per issue, though the launch issue’s discounts will add up to $150). Customers will have to be part of Best Buy’s Reward Zone Gamers Club, a customer loyalty program, to collect on discounts.
@Gamer will be led by Andy Eddy and William O’Neal, both longtime gaming journalists. It will be published 10 times a year and will be distributed by mail and through Best Buy stores.
The retailer’s publishing partner is Future US, the domestic arm of British speciality publisher Future, whos stable of titles includes Nintendo Power, World of Warcraft: The Official Magazine and Guitar World.
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