Crispy Gamer

Press conferences are useless


This year has continued a disturbing trend of press conferences by the big 3 console publishers that are useless. With rare exception, these conferences follow the same formula. At least six of the following incidents will happen, and in some cases, all of them. These are not in an exact order, but most will occur, almost like clockwork.

  • Someone will get on stage who looks, acts and talks like they are incredibly uncomfortable ... causing the audience to laugh nervously.
  • There will be several attempts at lame humor, occasionally accompanied by an uncomfortable pause for applause that may or may not come.
  • A celebrity of some stature will appear on stage, usually associated with a game the publisher is putting out. Said celebrity will act very wooden and talk about the game while knowing little about it other than the number of zeros on the royalty check.
  • Numbers and more numbers showing why the publisher's console is number one, ignoring the fact that anything can be done with numbers if you try hard enough.
  • A big game will be unveiled, usually accompanied by the big name developer behind it. Said developer will say little about the game except promise what he wants it to be.
  • Promises, promises and more promises.
  • The company rolls out a laundry list of all the things they are doing online to build community. A few of the revelations aren't even worth mentioning.
  • This just in: Said company is doing all these things to appeal to the mainstream soccer moms and grandmothers. It will be the best ever.
  • A huge lengthy cinematic trailer will be show on a big screen, eliciting ooo's and ah's from the audience, but nothing more will be said about the game ... and it won't be on the show floor. This leads to rampant analysis by the press, much of which will be wrong, because no one at the publisher will talk about the game.
  • A teaser trailer will be shown about a new game in development, less than a minute long. Very little can be pulled from it other than it is a sequel to a popular game. The trailer ends with "Coming 2015."
  • Some high ranking company executive will try to act cool on stage, perhaps with a celebrity or trying to play the company's new game. It ends badly, and becomes future fodder for bad E3 moments.
  • The press conference ends with a big announcement. There is a 50-50 chance that this announcement will be a collective yawn from the audience.

There may be a few others, but these are the big ones. The advice here is: Watch the streaming video from your hotel room. Watch the trailer online. Read the press releases that come out during the press conference. The only thing you might miss will end up on YouTube as an incredibly funny moment from E3.

The sad part is that non-big 3 companies are having press confereneces that are just as bad. If I had to cast my vote for the winner of the best press conference each year, my vote would go to the people smart enough NOT to attend.