Explosions. Flashing lights. Terry Crews.
Walking through the South Hall doors was a mixture of surreal and pure adrenaline. Activision on my left and Microsoft on my right.
And of course, Terry Crews on the big screen shouting BOOM in his Crackdown 3 spot.
Loud, overwhelming and incredible
Aside from the masses of industry members and fans, the entire spectacle of E3 is stupidly incredible.
I expected to be blinded and deafened by loudspeakers blaring trailers and projected logos and lasers darting around the show floor. I expected the lines and the waiting and the buffet of games to choose from.
But I underestimated the scope. The sheer magnitude of scale these booths take up. Microsoft had rows and rows of 4K tvs showcasing dozens of titles that were showcased in the lead up. Activision had a giant theater surrounded by pods featuring their tentpoles Destiny and Call of Duty.
Bethesda built a diner for Wolfenstein. Sega created a small alley based on Yakuza 6’s Kamurocho. Warner Bros. brought a dragon for Shadow of War. Capcom not only brought a dragon (a Rathlos) for Mondter Hunter they brought Ultron for Marvel vs Capcom.
And then there was Nintendo. Nintendo had a reputation for having some of the most involved booths at the show. But they went out and created Super Mario Odyssey’s New Donk City. If the rest of E3 is super-sized, Nintendo brought along a few Mega Mushrooms.
Blink and you’ll miss it
Take notes. Written, recorded, mental. There is a ton of stuff to note about a demo’s experience from technical execution to whether or not a game brings something new to the table.
It’s important to temper expectations when going through a demo. These are, after all, vertical slices for products that are months away from final build.
Keep your head on a swivel
There are a ton of demos out there, most of them for the biggest of games. But there are also a lot of smaller demos to be had peppered across the floor in both their own and the mega booths.
Companies are also peppering crowds with promotional gifts. This practice seems to be staggered to allow for product to last throughout the show rather than give it all away during the first rush. The most common question between attendees has been, “Hey, where’d you get that?”
They are video games, after all.