538734-010EDF17-8614-4FCA-84F2-81AB10CF341D.jpg

If you subscribe to Electronic Gaming Monthly, the current issue of the magazine, with the X-Men’s Wolverine on the cover, is the last one you’ll get after the struggling magazine and its affiliated 1UP Digital Network were sold to Hearst, owner of the similarly themed UGO Entertainment.

EGM, just one issue shy of its 20th anniversary blowout, limped along for years under Ziff Davis’ ownership, but I have a soft spot for the magazine’s refusal to let itself turn into a promotional rag controlled by game publishers.

With passionate editorials detailing such topics as how many publications’ cover articles were essentially bought and paid for by game publishers and marketing firms, recently departed 1UP Editorial Director Dan Hsu and others did their best to help keep gaming journalism honest.

At a time I was nearly ready to let my subscription lapse, a well-timed polemic about how corporate gifts and paid-for junkets were ruining games journalism’s credibility prompted me to renew for three years.

Unfortunately, EGM ran out before my subscription did.

In addition to the mag’s editorial integrity, I’ll miss its practice of assigning three reviewers ” each with his or her own perspective and preferences ” to tackle each major title.

It sounds like the 1UP Network will live on online, but with 30 EGM staffers having been laid off, the fate of 1UP.com’s popular features and podcasts is in limbo.

We’ll have to keep our fingers crossed and hope the reimagined network can stay honest under new ownership.