The NES Interview

Whoa, it's been quite a while since the last installment of the NES Interview! But look what's coming at you now - another look at the people, games and things that made the NES the NES, as told by the people who brought it all about. Be on the lookout for more interviews coming your way!

Chris Bieniek, terrorizing LA traffic
last week
This time around, |tsr interviews Chris Bieniek. Any of you who read magazines during the game console renaissance of the late 80s will remember one called Video Games & Computer Entertainment as one of the horde of mags that appeared during the first megaboom of 1988. Unlike most other magazines of its day, VG&CE was quite a bit more geared toward older readers. GamePro had all the flash and tips, but VG&CE provided a better example with its completely thorough reviews and emphasis on content over graphic wizardry - both in its editorial and in the ratings it gave.

VG&CE started in late 1988 and was the top independent video-game magazine for a short time, but as 16-bit became the standard mags like GamePro and Electronic Gaming Monthly began to overwhelm them in coverage. In 1994, much to the chagrin to me and a few other readers, VG&CE changed its name to simply VideoGames and disastrously became a GamePro clone - tips and strategy guides all over, low content, and a general lack of brains. VideoGames continued for nearly 2 years until it was bought out and shut down by Ziff-Davis in 1996.

Chris Bieniek's first review in VG&CE appeared in the middle of 1989, and he continued reviewing games free-lance until he moved into the offices full-time in 1992, taking over the portable-games section. He continued through the Video Games years and became the editor of a spinoff tip mag, Tips and Tricks, which he still runs today. Does the call of the NES still make the blood course thru' his veins? Read on and find out...

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