Funland, an all-digital gaming magazine inspired by publications like Electronic Gaming Monthly, Nintendo Power, and Famitsu, is out now on Itch.io and it’s absolutely stunning. According to its website, the magazine “will blend elements of olde with coverage that better reflects our modern tone, scope and politics. In short: A queer GamePro.”
“I didn’t want Funland to just be an exercise in nostalgia or revisionist history, but I began to see elements and pieces of the old formula could be subverted into something more exciting,” Kotzer told Polygon over Twitter.
The debut issue is titled “Living in Cyber Hell,” and it features well-known games writers and developers like Christine Love (Ladykiller in a Bind, Get In the Car, Loser!) and Spelunky creator Derek Yu. Visually, it’s gorgeous. The magazine is filled with original illustrations that dazzle with a soft color scheme of pastel pinks and baby blues. The debut issue includes previews of games like Cruelty Squad, My Work is Not Yet Done, and In the Crags.
If it seems like there’s a lot to look at in Funland, that’s because the layout is inspired by Kotzer’s experience of looking at dozens of gaming ads in magazines. As a child, he enjoyed looking at the ads, even if he couldn’t buy the product being sold. “I decided there’s no reason the ads I ran had to correlate with anything that exists,” Kotzer said. So he hired illustrators and cartoonists to create ads for made-up games.