Eat Me Drink Me Read Me Think Me
An enormous difference between AP and the overwhelming majority of games magazines was that we had writers who knew what they were doing. They read books. They knew adjectives. They could express ideas. And they made up words, memorably enriching AP's vocabulary.
(Which, enlightenedly, was never artificially constrained on the grounds that some may take offence. The grounds of unspeakable vileness however was another matter.)
What scientists with special trowels are only now beginning to catalogue as the AP Lexicon is a queer and writhy beast. It has cannibalised popular culture but bent the angle A across its sturdy knee. It has absorbed stock phrases but with a light jiggle wrought from them a lovely thing. It has stalked the black hole of self-indulgence, but Zeno's Paradoxly. It has introduced a delight in style and stylistic devices. It has hammered every single joke ever cracked in the mag into the ground and then followed it through the earth's crust into hell itself. And it's really messed with tenses. And rhythm.
No one who worked on AP passed without leaving their mark on its lexicon. Cumulatively, the AP staff invested in the mag an instantly recognisable approach. The penetrative argument - the concept reviews - the hammering of every single joke ever cracked in the mag into the ground and then following it through the earth's crust into hell itself - there's no mistaking AP.
(Similarly, you can tell within two sentences who's written what. AP had no stupidly limiting "house style," which was marvellous. Whereas other mags stripped out jokes because you don't have them in proper journalism, or made you give opinions as the "we" of the mag (for God's sake), AP didn't care in the slightest as long as you were vastly entertaining and mentioned the game. A bit. Perhaps at the end. (Hey, what else do you think the Bottom Line box was for?) Tim Norris once suggested a concept issue, where we'd all write In The Style Of... each other. Sadly, this came to nothing. It'd make a smashing competition.)
We love words. They're very nice. So permit us to share those that we used with you, our readers, in a big dictionary that you can study chin-strokingly.
A few tips. Exact phrases come under the initial letter. (For example, "It's X! It's Y! It's X and Y! It's X Y!" is listed under I.) Phrases starting with the subject come under the letter of the first consistent word. (For example, "X, more like" is listed under M.) Synonyms come under the first alphabetical instance. (For example, synonyms for Satan are listed under D, for the devil.) There are cross-references, so you ought to be all right.
You'll notice that there are few ratified first sightings. If you can help fill in the blanks, or are perplexed we've missed your favourite AP phrase, or want to point out that Matthew Squires didn't make up "Blimey!" and it's in fact a Cockney vulgarism of "God blind me!" that's been in common use since at least 1502 and you knew we were arrogant but that's taking the biscuit, and what are we, stupid or something? Or what?, do write in.