5 Reasons Why E3 Will Suck (And 5 Things That Would Make It Rock)By Justin Massoud
It’s that time of year again. E3 2010 is less than two weeks away, and despite past events it looks to be one of common goals: all three hardware manufacturers will represent motion controlled gaming this year. Hooray? But it wouldn’t be E3 without some frustrating, annoying bits. Here are 5 reasons E3 will suck this year, and, to keep things balanced, 5 things that would redeem it.
Reasons E3 Will Suck
1) Too Many Sequels
This happens every year, and every year it’s annoying. A disproportionate amount of time and effort is dedicated to direct sequels, almost to the point where if E3 was your sole source of game news you’d think every upcoming game is going to have the number 2 or 3 in it. From a business perspective it makes sense and I’m certainly looking forward to some sequels, but as a long-time gamer I’d rather see new and fresh.
2) By Show Time, Most of the Announcements Are Already Known
We all know a girl who spoils surprises like it’s her job. She “accidentally” reveals secrets and squeaks, “oops!” as everyone shakes their head. Well, in the weeks leading up to E3, all three hardware manufacturers put on a dress, draw a finger coquettishly to their mouths, and manage to let slip all their big announcements.
3) Market Leader Bragging
God bless Nintendo for recapturing the glory and relevancy it lost after the golden days of the SNES, but that doesn’t give the company license to beat us over the head with charts and graphs – especially since this will be the 4th year running in which that’ll happen. Leave the DS sales pie charts at home, Reggie; just bring Zelda Wii.
4) Scripted Moments That Aren’t Funny, Just Awkward
Some people may claim awkward moments are part of E3′s charm – that without the painfully unfunny, rehearsed exchanges between company big-wigs and extreme sports stars going toe-to-toe in an upcoming game to prove its universal appeal (‘games can bring anyone together, even stuffy corporate talking heads and skateboarders that can’t stop saying “dude!”‘) the event would be too serious. But you’re selling me on a video game, not a car; it’s a show about video games for nerds, not the Oscars.
5) It Spawns Tons of “Top 5/Top 10 blah blah blah” Lists
If there’s one thing video game bloggers know it’s how to write a Top 5/Top 10 list about stupid stuff – present article excluded of course. It’s like playing Modern Warfare 2 so much that you just know the spot on a map where the first firefight will erupt and make a bee-line there when the match begins. Although list articles are fairly common all year round, after E3 expect to see even more uninspired, silly stuff than usual, like ‘Top 5 Games of E3 That Feature Guns’ and ‘E3′s Top 10 Most Impressively Rendered Eyebrows.’
Things That Would Make E3 Rock
1) Retro Studio’s New Game
Retro’s last game was Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. It was released in 2007. It was awesome. Everyone knows it’s been working on something since, and E3 would be the perfect place for the unknown game to make its first appearance. It’ll be interesting to see what the Texas-based developer can do now that it’s no longer tethered to Samus Aran’s Varia suit.
2) New Internet Memes
One of my favorite parts of E3 isn’t the conferences, but the slew of jokes about the conferences that come soon after. I know I’m not alone. Last year produced some great ones: the Gran Turismo PSP translator guy, “Bam! There it is,” and basically the entirety of the Project Natal demonstration. What could be in store this year? With Microsoft hosting not one, but two conferences (one dedicated exclusively to Natal), Sony ready to show off Wii Remote #2 Move, and Nintendo’s typically insane showings my expectations for ridiculous moments are high.
3) Crazy Surprise Announcements
A Team Ninja-developed Metroid game? Final Fantasy XIII coming to the Xbox360? A brand new 2D console Mario with 4-player co-op? Even though many announcements are leaked prior to the event, E3 still manages to surprise. Here’s hoping for some really crazy stuff, like the long-rumored Kid Icarus reboot and a new Final Fantasy title even though FF Versus XIII and FFXIV aren’t even out yet. Wait, the latter wouldn’t actually be that much of a shock.
4) Zelda Wii
As much as it seems extremely likely for the next Legend of Zelda entry to make an appearance, it’s still up in the air. That said, I know there are people with their hopes high for a repeat of Miyamoto’s outrageous appearance when Twilight Princess was first unveiled at E3 2004. It’s hard to be a gamer and not mark out for a new console Zelda.
5) Corporate Potshots
Everyone loves watching people hurl insults and snide remarks, devoid of all logic and intelligence. Gamers in particular seem to get off on it. Want proof? Check basically any video game forum or the comment section of an article critical of a console manufacturer. E3 is the natural extension. There’s nothing better than watching professional men and women in business attire making six figure salaries get up on stage in front of hundreds of journalists and make off-the-cuff jokes about their competitors. It might just be good-natured ribbing, but watching fanboys get worked up into a lather over it is great fun.