World of Warcraft: The Magazine announced!

As part of the BlizzCon hoopla, Blizzard and (our parent company) Future US announced World of Warcraft: The Magazine, a quarterly publication that will be available this fall.

For everybody who might think, “A print magazine about an online game? That’s folly!” consider this: The magazine will be 148 pages with no ads, and it won’t be sold on newsstands – they’re only going to print as many as they need to cover subscriptions. Can you say “collectible”?

“It’ll be a large format, similar to Edge magazine in the UK,” says Dan Amrich, the magazine’s editor-in-chief. “We really want to leverage the fact that print can be a deluxe experience – beautiful art, quality articles, something that’s worth spending some time reading. So I’m telling people to expect something more along the lines of a coffee-table magazine. A lot of people have pointed out that print needs to change to survive, and I see a deluxe project like this as a valid evolutionary step.”

The price is evolutionary too: $39.95 for four issues (34.95 EUR in Europe and 29.95 GBP in the UK). “At other print magazines, I’ve always had readers ask why we didn’t just make a magazine without all those annoying ads in it,” says Amrich. “I always said, hey, that would cost $20 an issue, do you really want that? Well, I guess I was wrong, because it’s only ten bucks if you subscribe. But my job is to make sure that this magazine really is worth its asking price, because we’re trying to do something bigger and better than what people might immediately expect.”

The first issue will contain tactics for PvP and raid players, community spotlights, and a feature about game’s impending 5th anniversary. The cover subject is still secret (“it’s related to some unannounced upcoming content in the game, so we have to keep it quiet,” teases Amrich) but it will feature exclusive art commissioned by Blizzard.

To subscribe or get more info, you can visit any time after 9am PST on Friday.

Aug 20, 2009