ZZAP!64 issue 83, 1991 Brides of Dracula

Horror was always a visual draw, as Oliver explains to Roger Kean about the cover of ZZAP!64 issue 83, 1991 – Brides of Dracula

ZZAP!64 issue 83, 1991 Brides of Dracula

This issue of Zzap!, in that last run before Europress forced a change of name to Commodore Force, is an example of the somewhat chaotic situation that existed in the period between the end of magazine publisher Newsfield and the beginning five weeks later of Europress-Impact Magazines. ‘I had a load of new interior art and covers to catch up with over the first months,’ Oli recalls. ‘And I was also thrust into the publishing role to launch some of our new console titles.’

Re-use of older artwork was sometimes inevitable, so when the Zzap editor—'He may be a bit of a sucker, but Count Dracula certainly has a (unique!) way with women. Phil King gets his teeth into a blood-curdling tale…' said that for issue 83 he wanted to feature a preview of Gonzo Games’ Brides of Dracula, Oliver was heard to exclaim: ‘Fear!’

Yes, Zzap!64’s August 1992 cover started life a little under a year before as the cover of Newsfield’s FEAR magazine, issue 32, April 1991. As Oli points out, ‘Fear’s image was more of a square design and being about vampires in general, included two other blood-suckers, one associated with novelist Brian Lumley’s Necroscope books, so for Zzap! I had to vignette out the others to leave Dracula and his victim…er, sorry, his bride, as the central focus.

Fear 32 cover art by Oliver Frey

‘So I used the image enlarged to crop off the Necroscope grotesque on the right while fortunately the chunky Zzap!64 logo I devised so long ago covered up the Nosferatu guy on the left. A judicious use of a red background helped tidy it up.’

It was under the circumstances an entirely elegant solution, but as Oli freely admits, ‘I really would have loved doing a fresh take on Bram Stoker’s Transylvanian count, but sometimes when the needs must the Devil drives or in this case I just had to bite the ne— bullet!’

This article was published in FUSION magazine

Published by Oliver Frey Art on (modified )

Back to articles