The Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3 as it's known, has always been a little slice of heaven for hardcore gamers. Every year, developers and media both congregate at E3 to provide gamers with information on upcoming games. E3 is known for being a gaudy, showy event where bright displays and booth babes are all vying for the attention of the attendees. However, last year the ESA decided that E3 was a little too showy and downsized the event considerably. While some consider this change is for the better, making E3 and the gaming industry as a whole appear to be more professional, there are some that feel as if the smaller E3 has dampened the spirit intended for the event, turning a celebration of gaming into a boring and dry exhibition.
This week, we at Cheat Code Central sound off on the new E3 and whether it is a positive or a negative for the industry.
D'Marcus Beatty, Co-Site Director
My first E3 was an incredible occurrence in my life. Attending E3 is something that most gamers would love as it gives them the opportunity to view and try out the hottest upcoming games months and sometimes years before the games will hit their release date. The show was undeniably flashy, with booth babes that had little knowledge of the products that they were endorsing, loud demonstrations, and tons of games to play.
That E3 is gone and I can't help but be saddened by its loss.
The new E3 that we had the chance to experience is much smaller than the one I'm used to, a streamlined expo that divested itself of all of the gaudiness of E3's past. Perhaps it's a little early to judge, but this E3 seemed to be far less exciting than any E3 before it. It might be due to the lack of any major new revelations, but this E3 just seemed to be a little dry. While it might be a step in the right direction, I earnestly believe the best thing for gamers would be a medium between the two extremes. Perhaps we don't need dozens of booth babes or giant flashing exhibitions with neon lights, but we still need some excitement, some showiness, some flash to keep the industry from devolving into some stuffy event. After all, gaming is, first and foremost, about having fun, isn't it?
Maria Montoro, Co-Site Director
Without a doubt, the previous E3 format was far more exciting for the audience than it was this year. I like the idea of downsizing the event, spending less money, and getting rid of people that just can't behave. However, the fun and flashiness should have stayed. In other words, they should have had the same kind of event they previously had, which was successful and filled with good advertising for upcoming games, but smaller in size and with reduced expenditures.
Instead, they turned the new E3 into a serious event, a collection of press conferences with a few smaller parties in between, and some game testing in a smaller scale. The truth is, in order to bring excitement and create that high anticipation that was developed for forthcoming games in previous years, one can't forget to employ the wow factor. Many of the elements that made E3 and many of the less important people that used to go to the event were responsible for that wow factor. There was certainly a lack of that this year, which could be seen when Peter Moore, Reggie Fils-Aime, and others announced quite exciting things but didn't get much of an ovation.
I wish there was a way to measure the marketing results of each of the formats so the decision could be made accordingly. If games don't sell as much or become as popular because of the new E3 format, maybe they'll consider going back to the old E3. If, on the contrary, the results are the same or better, then I'll understand the whole change of E3 and deal with it.
Matthew Walker, Project Coordinator
Another E3 has come and quickly passed once more, much like an anticipated Christmas for the little gamer in all of us. Except this year's E3 was unlike all E3s before. Regrettably, this year's was a huge let down. Granted, there were a few highlights from the show, but all in all it was not our E3 that we have come to know and love.
The main problem that I had with this year's conference was the formal and sometimes stiff nature of the entire show. It was very straight and to the point throughout most of the displays. All about the numbers and the self-glorifying praise for how good they have been doing and, in some cases, how good, they will always do. This was massively apparent in all three of the big three's press conferences. However, there was one that at least attempted to try a hold onto a little of the E3 magic that we have had in the past and that was Sony. They kept it lighthearted with a special guest, Chewbacca. They also mentioned how well they thought they were doing but knew that they needed to focus on upcoming games that they have announced previously and a few that we hadn't expected. This was how they needed to approach this year's E3, and that is what they did. In my opinion, because they kept the fun and didn't seem to try and focus on the things we didn't want to hear, that is why they had it best, and, to quote a friend of mine, quite frankly they had more "holy crap did you see that moments."
All three companies near refusal to deliver anywhere near the previous year's E3 excitement levels, regrettably, can only lead us assume that future E3s are going to be just as big let downs. Then again, hopefully, the E3 gods will see the error of their ways and decide to return the E3 to the formidable expo it has grown into. Maybe Kratos will have to come and knock some sense into them. Only time will tell, but until then, we know that we still have a few other conventions that may give the glimmers of the E3 of the past.