On 30 April 2011 AGPC presented Herb Levy, Founder and President of Gamers Alliance, with the AGPC’s 2011 Bradley-Parker Award. The Gamers Alliance has served gamers in the past 25 years by providing hard-hitting reviews of games and also connecting gamers to out-of-print games.
Herb was always interested in games. Some of his earliest memories involved receiving Parker Brothers or Milton Bradley games as birthday presents. From those games, often played in his basement, he discovered Avalon Hill when another friend brought a copy of D-Day. Levy had never seen a game quite like D-Day (nor did his friend apparently). As it turned out, it was up to Herb to decipher the rules, and soon, D-Day was the game of choice. It was played so often, they could feel the sand in their shoes from Normandy Beach. But despite their enthusiasm, there didn’t seem to be a connection between the players and the rest of the world. Then, he discovered Games & Puzzles.
Inside an Avalon Hill game he had purchased was an ad for an English gaming publication: Games & Puzzles. Herb signed up for it immediately. It was a publication unlike any he had ever seen before. It talked about games, featured articles on game strategy, and even more incredible to Levy, reviewed current games in their “Gamesview” section. Gamesview only ran for a few pages but he considered it to be the best part of the issue. Unfortunately, after going through several ownership changes, the magazine folded. Surely, some other publication would rise up to take its place. Surely, someone else would address gaming the way it should be. Surely… but no. It didn’t happen. So, by the time 1986 rolled around, Levy thought that if he wanted this done, maybe he would have to be the one to do it.
With the supreme confidence of the uninformed, Levy decided to give his idea a shot. Gamers Alliance began with the publication of the Fall 1986 issue of Gamers Alliance Report. It was a small issue, only 12 pages long, pounded out on his typewriter and mailed to a select audience. It was the first step on what has proven to be a very exciting and very long and winding road, a road that has become 25 years long!
At present, game reviews written by Levy (nearly 700 at this point) have appeared in such disparate publications as GAMES Magazine, Strategy & Tactics, and of course, Gamers Alliance Report. Gamers Alliance is now international in its membership and is an unparalleled source for out-of-print games anywhere. In addition, Levy has done playtesting, development work, and evaluations on many games throughout the years as well as being a voting member for the International Gamers Awards, the prestigious awards given to honor the best games of the year. Today, Gamers Alliance is celebrating its 25th anniversary and Gamers Alliance Report is the longest running, continuously published, English language game review publication in the world!