Are DC Thomson bringing magazines back for the boys?
The January-June 2014 ABC’s released in August presented another period on period decline for the primary boys press market. 8 of the 10 audited titles saw a circulation drop, presenting a 10.6% fall in circulations across the primary boys market*.
In contrast, the boys gaming market shows no sign of slowing, with boys under 12 spending an average of 8.5 hours per week playing computer/handheld or console games*, which perhaps is eating into the time they may have once used immersed in a magazine.
DC Thomson appear to have taken the ‘if you can’t beat them, join them’ approach with their new magazine, 110% Gaming, which landed on my desk this afternoon. With the first issue set to go on sale this Wednesday and their website (which features games, obviously) already live, the publisher has taken a clever approach combining a title where boys can get gaming tips, read reviews and preview upcoming games with a supporting digital platform where they can execute their skills and immerse themselves further in the gaming world.
This apparent gap in the market has been identified by 110% Gaming and earlier this year by Robot magazine, a title with a similar concept that was launched in early July.
There are already multiple adult gaming titles, so DC Thomson’s aim with 110% Gaming is to ‘bring gaming back to the kids.’ With so much speculation over recent years regarding children playing games with an 18+ certificate, hopefully the title will spark excitement for age appropriate games once again.
The increasing popularity of digital platforms such as Twitch (where gamers can watch other gamer’s game play) presents a wider interest in games than game play itself. Boys like to play games, boys like to watch others play games, but will they like to read about playing games?
It will be interesting to see the early success of the title in the 2015 ABCs, and what effect the title has had, if any, on the wider primary boys press market.
ABC Report January-June 2014, Youth TGI Oct 2014, http://www.110%gaming.com