Magazine letters by Stu
Stu also wrote to many computer magazines such as, well, most of them. Here are a few examples:
STUART IS BACK!
I would just like to congratulate Daze Marketing on their recent move to price their games, albeit temporarily, at £2.99. I purchased Storm Master from them and the sevice was prompt and efficient. With the price of software being so high, I commend Daze who have taken the initiative and restructured their pricing accordingly. Other companies worthy of high praise are Team 17 and Software Business for releasing their latest new product, namely F17 Challenge and Gearworks, at under £20. If these companies do well (and I hope they do) (so do we - Ed) then others may follow their example.
Stuart N Hardy, Sheffield
Welcome back Stuart!
For the benefit of our newer readers, Stuart is one of the computer industry's most prolific letter writers. There cannot be a single magazine editor in the UK who doesn't recognise his handwriting before they even get to his signature. Stuart lost favour with many editors some time ago for his persistent haranguing, and because his letters were largely ill considered tosh. But just recently we have received two extremely sensible, well reasoned and mature letters from Stuart, so the unofficial ban on his letters on these pages is now removed. Welcome to the grown-up world, Stuart.
STICK 'EM UP
I'm a bit fed up with games that aren't hard disk installable. Although not a new problem, I think the computer companies have a cheek to simply ignore it. The same can be said for second drives - when I purchased mine and saw that the majority of titles did not cater for it, I hoped the situation would get better - which it is doing, but only slowly. With the price of software so high, I believe these companies owe it to their customers to make as many games as hard/second drive compatible as possible. As an example, let's look at the ageing strategy game, Joan of Arc. Before loading, a simple prompt appears asking how many drives you have and then the game loads accordingly. This is a nice idea which surely doesn't take up too much time and memory to produce, yet it is a big help to gameplayers. I would like to see companies place small stickers on their game boxes saying if the contents are hard and/or second drive compatible. If, for some reason, this is not possible, perhaps the computer magazines could help. They could mention drive requirements in their reviews or, preferably, in the same box displaying the game's name and price etc.
Stuart Hardy, Sheffield.
Our recent survey revealed that just over a quarter of you either had a hard disk or were thinking about buying one in the next 12 months. With this kind of support, I would guess that more and more games publishers will support hard drive installation. As for supporting second disk drives, it's one of my pet hates when a multi-disk game comes into the offices and only runs of one drive. Stupid.
I have noticed how certain magazines have, within the last 8 months, started giving away full commercial utility packages on their coverdisks. In all this time none of the main computer organizations have ever complained. What a far cry to when the same was tried with games! Then, as you may remember, a successful campaign ensured such actions were made illegal. Yet, as other people have said, there is proof that these covermounted games did not harm the industry as much as we were led to believe. Look at Kid Gloves, for example. It still sold extremely well in the Budget charts even after being distributed on the cover of Amiga Power magazine. Having failed with games, some of the mags are trying the same with utilities and - for now, at least - have been having a smoother ride. I wondered if there is a strategy behind this? In these troubled times not too many people can afford £100+ on the latest utilities and if they can buy them on a magazine at under a fiver they will. Thus they receive a wider audience and, in theory, a greater quantity of worthwhile stuff will be produced with them. In turn, the PD libraries, magazines and commercial publishers are flooded with new (utility created) titles which leads to more choice for the Amiga-owning public. In short, everybody wins. Your views on this subject will, as ever, be gratefully appreciated.
Stuart N. Hardy, Sheffield.
NB: This letter isn't one of Stu N Hardy's, but contains some informative quotes
'UNWILLING TO DISMISS SOMEONE'
Dear AMIGA POWER,
Upon reading Stuart N Hardy's 'angry' letter in AP6 my first thought was "My, he sounds remarkably pompous and self important." However, I was unwilling to dismiss someone with 'vast literate experience' so easily, so I looked through my old AMIGA POWERs to find his letters which had been worthy of publication. This is what Stu had to say:
AP3 - Isn't it a shame that magazines don't have full price games on the cover any more?
AP4 - It appears that there's some kind of economic recession on at the moment.
AP5 - Apparently the most important aspect of a game is its playability, not just its graphics and sound.
AP6 - Well packaged games aren't always the best games.
What insight! None of these ideas had ever occured to me (or anyone else I'm sure)! It just goes to show, first impressions can be wrong. Thanks Stu, I hope to read more of your revealing letters.
Yours, Greg Brown, Whitstable