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Nintendo Power was Nintendo’s official magazine in North America, a monthly news and strategy magazine about all Nintendo platforms. From the first issue (July/August 1988) up to issue 222 (December 2007), it was published in-house by Nintendo of America, then publishing duties were contracted to Future US.

Nintendo Power began as the several page long Nintendo Fun Club News (which was sent to subscribers for free). However, in mid-1988 Nintendo Fun Club News was discontinued after seven issues and revamped as Nintendo Power. The first issue published 3.6 million copies, with every member of the Nintendo Fun Club receiving a free one. Almost one third of the members subscribed.

From the beginning, Nintendo Power has focused heavily on providing game strategy, tips and tricks, reviews, and previews of upcoming games. Seeing as the magazine enjoyed 20 years of Nintendo-directed publication, NP was the ultimate source for detailed mapping and insider knowledge delivered directly from the programming teams. As a result, the magazine has enjoyed the reputation of being the definitive source for all things Nintendo, separating itself from a more traditionally speculative approach as used by its contemporaries. The magazine had remained financially successful and was one of the longest-running game oriented magazines still in circulation.

Nester, main character of “Nester’s Funky Bowling” for the Virtual Boy, was the long-time teenage mascot and comic strip star of Nintendo Power. Nester was created by Howard Philips, “President” of the Nintendo Fun Club and a former editor of Nintendo Power, to be the supporting character in his comic strip, Howard & Nester. The comic strips generally advertised new games, often by dream sequences where Nester was actually a given video game character. From 1989 to 1993, The Nintendo Power Awards featured Nester-shaped trophies and were referred to in the magazine as the “Nesters” as a reference to the Oscars.

The final issue of Nintendo Power was released in December 2012.

Publication details
Region: United States