Importance of Video Game Walkthroughs

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INTRODUCTION ¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯ I know. This essay is quite lengthy, so if you're in a hurry just skip down to the walkthrough. However, if you have some interest in how the guide writing industry is currently evolving, I invite you to read this essay in which I plead for more recognition for, and more cooperation between guide authors. THE PAST ¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯ Game guides have been around for almost as long as videogames themselves, but in a world where information is becoming increasingly more accessible, how is the format for game guides evolving? In the early nineties, game guides were usually featured as an appendix to videogame magazines, until Prima launched a series of game guides back in 1990. The guides were qualitatively poor and fairly unpopular by today's standards. Another company called Bradygames started selling guides in the nineties. It spawned various over the years, including infamous - yet bestselling - books for popular RPG's such as the Final Fantasy series. Halfway the nineties, hotlines also started to gain popularity, if only through heavy marketing. By dialing a certain hotline you had "instant access" to hundreds of cheats for the most well-known games. The hotlines were rather expensive (a buck per minute at least), so it wasn't the preferred option for getting your daily cheatcodes. If you were stuck in a game back then, you either had your friends or big brother help you. If your friends sucked at gaming and you didn't have a big brother (I for one, didn't), then "that was life for 'ya." At the end of the decade, two new companies arose in the game guide industry, and interestingly, both took base in Hamburg, Germany. Piggyback quickly conquered the European market with high-quality guides for well-known games such as the Metal Gear Solid and Final Fantasy Series. FuturePress filled in the gaps with 'lesser' titles

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