The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) and ReedPop announced that the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) has been cancelled for 2023. Carefully worded quotes from both parties have some people asking, “Is E3 dead?” With that in mind, The BeeRPad hosts Marcus Beer and Raymond Padilla discuss the show in this very special E3-centric episode.
Surprised by the cancellation of E3 2023, the boys discuss:
- Is E3 dead (as in for good)?
- A quick history of IDSA/ESA and how E3 got started
- Does the videogame business even need E3 anymore?
- Marcus Beer’s issues with The ESA and influencers
- Memories from their first E3 shows
- That time “Bill Wen” stormed the gates of the Eidos party
- That time when “Schmarren Gladstein” chopped off his finger at E3
- Steven Spielberg getting pulled into a Fear demo by Marcus
Personally, I hope that E3 continues in some form. It’s been an important part of my professional life and it would be weird for it to be gone forever. That said, change is inevitable. I remember attending several COMDEX conventions when that was one of the biggest trade shows in the world and that show has been dead since 2003.
Asking, “Is E3 dead?” is a legitimate question. Events like DICE excel at serving high-level executives and developers. GDC does a wonderful job serving developers. PAX has been amazing for consumers. Additionally, a trade show isn’t really needed for videogame buyers in 2023 like it was in 2003 and publishers can serve a controlled message for much cheaper by hosting online press events. For the last decade or so, many people were wondering, “Who is this show for?”
My one (naive?) hope is for The ESA to go back to its roots and use the E3 brand to raise awareness on advocacy issues. Remember, the organization started to help combat the heat videogames like Night Trap and Mortal Kombat were getting in the early ’90s. These days, videogames are a favorite target of certain American politicians whenever a mass shooting happens. The videogame business sorely needs an effective way to fight back against politicians and news networks that paint videogames as the cause of mass shootings in America.
Special thanks to my friend Anthony Parisi for sharing this awesome video from E3 1995. Check it out when you have a chance (please!).