Thoughts on the Electronic Entertainment Expo

When I worked at in 2000, the two events I looked forward to most where Comic-Con and the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3).

Certainly conventions and trade shows rarely offer anything beyond crass commercialism, but these two events (along with my beloved South by Southwest Interactive) have fan threads running through them that energize you.

Even when my job was covering the news of those events, I spent almost no time with companies. Frankly, I had most of the news weeks before the shows launched. What I couldn’t get anywhere else was the frenetic energy of rabid fans. I enjoyed being around that, listening to people talk about their entertainment passions, and following the interesting conversational memes.

In the end, what attracts me to these places is the ability to find folks who have interests that are both similar to mine, and that complement what I don’t yet know.

The Thing Warren Spector Wrote:

I don’t follow the computer and video game industry much anymore. I haven’t played consistently in years, and I haven’t written about the business since our book came out in 2003.

Game designer Warren Spector summed up nicely what seems to be emerging from the E3 expo this year:

The LA Times ran two stories today about E3. That’s pretty cool – one story? Sure. Expected. Two? Guess games are legit. But then you look at the stories and confusion reigns:

The story on page 1 is headlined “Little guys make a play,” about the big buzz expected around indie games.

The story on the first page of the business section is headlined “Game consoles playing big role at expo,” about, well, exactly what you think.

The two articles seem like they’re from different quantum universes or something. But, hey – that confusion sums up what E3 seems to be about this year…

When new consoles emerge, the game industry always stumbles about as we wait to see exactly how the consumer market shakes out.

What seems different this year is the plethora of powerful, mobile devices combined with the emerging digital distribution platforms creating new competition in the console market.

For me, I’m interested to see how all of these platform can work together to expand the game communities associated with game worlds.

PC Games at E3

I’m not much up on the news anymore, but I did find myself reading up on the PC games people were most excited to see this year.


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This newsletter is the outgrowth of The Downtown Writers Jam podcast. What that means is I will collect information about the authors I interview, book happenings around the Web, and other literary events that I find interesting. Without you, I'm just a crazy guy sitting in his office furiously screaming on the page for no reason.
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