Launched in October 1987, roughly the same time as Ludlow-based publisher Newsfield's own multi-format magazine The Games Machine, the magazine consisted mainly of ex-Amstrad Action and Personal Computer Games staff, including launch co-editors Peter Connor and Steve Cooke. Andy Wilton, ex-Amstrad Action, was brought in as Reviews Editor, while Dave Packer and Andy Smith were hired as Staff Writers. Trevor Gilham, another ex-Amstrad Action member, held the position of Art Editor.
Coverage initially included Atari ST, Amiga, C64, ZX Spectrum and Amstrad CPC, but also included newer machines as they were released. Although games features were the mainstay, other articles on graphics and computer music were featured. A cover cassette, and later a floppy disk, was included with the magazine featuring games demos.
Regular editorial features included Interface; News, Letters, The Blitter End. The Specials; features and Gameplay; Screen Test, Arcades, Tricks 'n' Tactics, Adventures.
Screen Test was the games review section. Games were rated (out of ten) on Visual effects, Audio, IQ Factor, Fun Factor and an overall rating. Games were seen by all the reviewers and the overall rating, and was notable for scoring games out of 1000 rather than the usual percentage or mark out of ten. Also introduced was the Predicted Interest Curve graph where the game was given a line graph predicting the long term interest in the game over many months.
See here for a list of games reviewed in this magazine.
|Issue||Games Reviewed||Average Score||Highest Score||Highest scoring game||Lowest Score||Lowest scoring game|
|1||27||753||958||Bubble Bobble (C64)||531||Last Mission (C64)|
|8||52||699||969||Oids (Atari ST)||285||Frightmare (C64)|
|9||37||693||958||Bubble Bobble (Amiga)||392||Strip Poker II+ (Amiga)|
|10||34||697||934||F/A-18 Interceptor (Amiga)||392||Starring Charlie Chaplin (Amstrad CPC)|
|11||43||613||981||Virus (Atari ST)||261||Aaargh! (Amiga)|
|12||50||676||940||Reach for the Stars (PC)||321||The Fury (Spectrum)|
|13||32||736||928||Ultima V (PC)||289||Action Force (Amstrad CPC)|
|14||27||651||945||Falcon A.T. (PC)||332||Street Sports Soccer (PC)|
|15||45||721||963||Driller (Amiga, Atari ST)||273||Elemental (Atari ST)|
|38||22||782||911||Welltris (PC)||510||Dr Mario (Gameboy)|
|39||21||791||955||Savage Empire (PC)||405||Gremlins 2 (Amiga)|
|40||31||803||919||Strider (Mega Drive)||598||Wings of Death (Amiga)|
|Issue||Cover Date||Release Date||Pages||Price||Editor||Publisher|
|1||October 1987||September 1987||100||£1.50||Peter Connor, Steve Cooke||Future|
|2||1 October 1987|
|8||May 1988||124||£1.50||Peter Connor, Steve Cooke||Future|
|9||June 1988||124||£1.50||Peter Connor, Steve Cooke||Future|
|10||July 1988||3 June 1988||132||£1.50||Peter Connor, Steve Cooke||Future|
|11||August 1988||7 July 1988||132||£1.50||Peter Connor, Steve Cooke||Future|
|12||September 1988||4 August 1988||124||£1.50||Steve Cooke||Future|
|13||October 1988||1 September 1988||156||£1.50||Steve Cooke||Future|
|14||November 1988||6 October 1988||148||£1.50||Steve Cooke||Future|
|15||December 1988||3 November 1988||172||£1.50||Steve Cooke, Graeme Kidd||Future|
- Profile of ACE magazine at Amiga History