Two-hundred eighty-five. If that number holds any special meaning to you, then you were likely a lifetime follower of the American official Nintendo magazine Nintendo Power. While other magazines, namely Famitsu, have had longer runs and more issues multiple times over, Nintendo Power always held the spot as the longest-lived monthly Nintendo-focused magazine. That now changes as a new king of the hill emerges. The February 2018 issue of Japanese magazine Nintendo Dream will be number 286!
The issue - which features Breath of the Wild Champions’ Ballad DLC on the cover - also comes with a “Switch All Software Catalogue,” highlighting each Japanese release from 3rd March last year until 19th January. Other new and soon-to-be-released games are featured as well.
Nintendo Dream began life as The 64 Dream, and was the first Nintendo dedicated magazine in Japan. The first issue saw release on 21st September 1996 and gave N64 fans a home for more in-depth detailed coverage that other multi-format magazines couldn’t do.
When the N64 gave way to the GameCube, the name was changed to Nintendo Dream and month after month after month they kept putting out issue after issue after issue. Next year, “Nindori” (as its often also called) will pass 300 issues. With the popularity of The Switch and Japan’s continued devotion to print, who knows how long the publication will last?
As for Nintendo Power, from 1988 all the way to 2012, it dutifully appeared in mailboxes delivering the best news, tips and insider info straight from the source. Even in the Internet Age, Nintendo Power still held its own against the web. Despite the speed and access that online delivery can bring, fans of the magazine kept renewing their subscriptions and keeping with tradition. However, Future Publishing, which had taken control of the magazine from Nintendo in 2007, just couldn’t maintain Nintendo Power any longer and in December, 2012 ended the magazine on a high note.
What remained were 285 issues, and several great guidebooks as its legacy. At least we can take comfort that the idea that Nintendo Power started lives on in Japan and continues to do so.