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Missing Magazine: Total Gamer (Canada) c.2001-2005


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There's not a whole lot of information available about this magazine, but I managed to dig up a bit of info from archive.org. I hope this is enough. 🙂





I couldn't find any information about the total number of issues, and it seems that, with a few exceptions, TG didn't number their issues at all (I have seven issues and none of them are numbered). From the PDF above the cover of October 2001 is labeled "[...]me 1 Issue 2" so I'm guessing the first issue was released the month before, which would make the total number of issues 52 at most (assuming a monthly release from Sep. 2001 to Dec. 2005; couldn't find a definitive end-point).

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  • 2 weeks later...

Was this a free publication like The Computer Paper?

The archived website mentions that it had distribution through Blockbuster and other places, but I do not recall ever seeing it anywhere. I lived in Edmonton between 2001 and 2005, so not exactly a small town, and I was actively interested in gaming at this time so I would have picked-up a copy had I seen it anywhere. 

I wonder if "national" circulation meant that it had distribution in Toronto and Montreal (and maybe Ottawa). 

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Yeah it was free, and like The Computer Paper was also published by Canada Computer Paper. I used to pick one up whenever my parents would drive my brother and I to Blockbuster, and I live a few hours north of Toronto.

Circulation was "150,000, including Blockbuster, and other locations across Canada", so I imagine it must have had at least some distribution outside of Ontario. I've no clue as to exactly how much, of course.

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  • 3 months later...

I am still trying to get a handle on the geographic distribution of this magazine.


In the earliest available issues (2001, 2002) there was a contact for Advertising Sales with a Calgary telephone number. By 2003, this was gone and the only advertising contact listed was in Toronto.


Almost all of the advertising was for new game releases (Ubisoft had multiple ads in every issue) and Blockbuster -- apparently the distribution partner. There was nothing for local/regional businesses, with the exception of a single ad for Microplay (which has only a very limited retail presence outside of Ontario).


Obviously this does not answer the question about how widely this title was distributed, but it supports the idea that it was largely limited to Ontario. 

An article referenced in the first post states that:



Total Gamer was available for free at Blockbuster, EB Games, and Microplay locations across Canada


Well, that effectively answers my distribution question. As noted, Microplay did not have a presence in Alberta, and EB Games did not open its first store in Edmonton until about 2004*. I never went to Blockbuster, so that would explain why I never saw this magazine BITD.


*They took over the space from a different video game retailer. My friends and I joked about the very long time that it took to convert the premises from a  video game store to a different video game store. 

Edited by JHD
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  • 11 months later...

I'm skeptical about some of those dates, as it would be more than the six issues per year release schedule that TG followed, and I don't believe they ever deviated from that. And I see their website lists some of those issues with another date under the Call Number. For example, their listing for April 2003 also has "Note: 2003 March"; going by this forum archive, there exists issues for March, May and July, but not for April.

That said, I think this does help give a nearly complete run of the magazine, as there were only two issues in 2003 that I weren't sure of, and this seems to confirm there was one final issue in 2005. All that's left is, theoretically, one issue from before October 2001.

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