G&G 062 – It’s that time of year where we round up the latest news items from the oh so strange event known as E3. We mostly stick to Sony news this time so we have a lot of games to chat about! We also find some time to talk Nintendo and even Xbox. Listen now and see what we are looking forward to!
thepoorassgamer’s final thoughts
Well boy oh boy, if you had the time to listen to our full podcast this week, I hope you have a little more time for my final thoughts about E3 2017. Just to start: this is going to be a bit of a smear job on the E3 press conferences and an entire week of video game related news.
First, let’s address the current topic of many a gaming website: “Do we even need E3 anymore?”. Truthfully, this is a good question to be asking of an industry where video games are released all year long, are often times delayed, and are rushed to the consumer nearly unfinished. I for one have settled on the thought that most of the gaming news that was released this past week could have been done the Nintendo way: by releasing a long video of all of the announcements and also releasing play-through videos direct to Youtube. These events serve only those individuals who wish to pay to sit in a nice theater and to play some games later that week.
But let’s be honest, if most of us gamers could play the very same demo’s the attendee’s at E3 are playing, well, then there wouldn’t be much of a complaint from thepoorassgamer. I think what we are really seeing here is a place where the gaming industry, namely the ESA (Entertainment Software Association) found a money pit and are not willing to give it up. If these events continue to work in this manner, it may end up being bad for the industry in the long run as it shows some true colors: that large corporations really do want to squeeze every dime they can get out of the gaming community. On the flip side, there is evidence this year that shows that attendance was up. So maybe this is just the ranting of an old gamer, but to all the younger gamers out there, I have to urge you not to give these companies all of your money. Keep in mind you’re paying for airfare, a hotel room for yourself and however many other people come with you, food, travel expenses around town, and any other items you may wish to pick up on the show floor. Basically, E3 has you by the balls.
Now if you thought about it for a moment, if gamers chose to just stay home each E3, we would get all of our information in bite size articles along with a trailer and some gameplay footage. And ultimately for many gamers who do not have the time or money to go to E3 each year, most of that content is made immediately available through troves of video game news websites.
Look, I have friends that have gone to E3, they make a whole week of it and it looks like a whole hell of a lot of fun. But I keep having that nagging feeling that all of this is just another sad example of what the gaming industry can do to its patrons. If truly all of the information being released at E3 was worth the cost of all it takes to get there, then to sit in an auditorium to watch carefully coordinated videos, well, shit guys, I already do that at my current job reading documentation and powerpoints: it’s basically the same thing. Sure, there’s the atmosphere of your fellow gamers going nuts over a world premiere, but I think the majority of fans would prefer all of their E3 news in one article, and if the site is doing it’s job, one article with only the information about the games that you care about.
Now let me be frank: I’ve been watching these E3 events for the past few years and I will say that the positive changes I saw with Sony and Nintendo this year give me confidence that these events are going the way of the dinosaur. I have to believe that these companies are over the idea of producing these expensive events for little return each year. This isn’t also to say that I didn’t see the merit in Microsoft’s longer press conference (…they have to win us back folks). But Microsoft is out swinging for the fences because it lost so much with how their product was initially received. Sure, they have done a lot in the past few years to repair that relationship with gamers, but offering old Xbox support and a $500 console to me is again, another example of the gaming industry trying to squeeze more profit. I know we all want a healthy industry for all of our games to live and breath, but ultimately, that’s all we want: the games.
A great console is ultimately defined by the great software, be it the UI that gets you to the store to the game and back, to the very content of the game itself. I feel like with events that stretch over the course of an entire week just to end with the majority of those games having release dates sometime in 2018, isn’t worth it to me.
In short, give me some substance, not all the fluff.