E3: The party's over
It looks like my first E3 was my last -- not to mention everybody's last. Joystiq has the shocking news:
Doug Lowenstein, the president of the Entertainment Software Association is expected to announce within the next 48 hours that E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, the definitive video games show, has been cancelled. Industry sources have told Next-Gen that the reasoning behind this move is primarily one of cost versus return. Publishers aren't getting the media attention that they expect from the large amounts of cash that they're putting down to exhibit at the show.
Good Lord. I feel like Santa just called off Christmas. Is the industry trying to tell us they have better things to spend their money on than giant multi-million dollar booths, bikini-clad models and goofy chotchkes, all on noisy display for the edification of sweaty game journalists. Sure, they'll replace it with some pale shadow of the real thing, but E3 was about spectacle. Glorious, glowing spectacle, where corporate giants sqared off in the public relations equivalent of a Roman circus. The pressure was always on to top not only the other exhibitors, but last year's show. Ultimately, that pressure led to this sad truce. It might make economic sense, but it's hard not to feel like a major part of our shared fanboy culture died today.
As an Xbox 360 fanboy, I want to know what role Microsoft played in the decision to scale back E3 until it's not E3, thereby breaking the hearts of millions of 14-year-olds and millions more 30-year-olds who wish they were 14. I understand that that the big guys don't want to have to compete for attention. But the competition -- the grand stage -- is what created so much excitement in the first place.
It's the end of an era.
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- Capcom to end PS3 exclusives? (8/21/2006)
- Vision camera available now at Toys R Us [update 1] (8/21/2006)
- X360F Poll: (Insert game) killed my 360! (8/20/2006)
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