E3 may never be coming back (pic: Metro)
A reader is disappointed by the lack of preview events this year and explains why he thinks the loss of E3 is a blow to everyone.
If this was any normal pre-pandemic year we would have just had E3 week, which would’ve seen dozens of new games announced, and tons of interviews and hands-on previews from GameCentral and other websites. It’s my favourite time of the year as a gamer and while it was understandable it didn’t happen the last two years most companies still tried to make an effort to put on an equivalent. This year they didn’t though, and it’s been awful.
Microsoft tried their best but their event, while on at the usual time it would be, barely announced any new games and didn’t have anything at all on ones we know exist, like Fable and Avowed. It was a fairly slick show, and they made more effort than anyone else, so I’m tempted to give them a pass.
Before that was Summer Game Fest, which was a lot more of a slog to sit through and while it did announce games it was very hard to guess if any of them would be any good. The biggest announcement of the night was The Last Of Us Part 1 which was a) a remake and b) had leaked earlier anyway. It was all very underwhelming and unfortunately that’s pretty much all there’s been.
Capcom had an event on Monday that went on for 30 minutes and didn’t announce anything. Instead, they waited till Thursday to have a reveal for Dragon’s Dogma 2, which involved nothing but a man showing off the logo on his T-shirt.
Incredibly, they managed to schedule this at exactly the same time as Square Enix’s own event. Despite the fact that there was nothing else going on the whole week and it seems almost impossible you could’ve randomly picked exactly the same time for two separate 10-minute events.
Square Enix’s show was quite good, assuming you like Final Fantasy, but it didn’t talk about anything else and, as far as we know, that’s it for the whole year. Sony might have another State of Play this month, and Nintendo might have a Direct, but they haven’t announced it and it’s hard to say if that’s just wishful thinking. Why they can’t just tell us is a mystery, as if they purposefully want to make June seems as unexciting as possible.
This is such a far cry from what E3 used to be I find it genuinely depressing. E3 used to be a celebration of games, with coverage on the news and everyone getting a shot in the spotlight. Now publishers just prefer to tell you as little as possible about their new games and hope that the less you know the less you’ll be put off taking a blind chance at it.
It’s really awful. No E3 means publishers are under less scrutiny and it means we have less fun speculating and anticipating new games. I literally have no games I’m looking forward to at the moment, whereas usually E3 would have furnished me with a long shopping list of games to start following and working out if I’m interested in them.
As far as I’m concerned the games industry needs, as a matter of urgency, to bring back E3. It needs a public event that gets major coverage, it needs to show solidarity by having everyone in the same place, and it needs a simple one stop shop to announce new games. More than anything it needs the razzamatazz and excitement because rather than being the most exciting month for games, June 2022 has been the most boring.
By reader Tantor
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