The evolution of presentations at E3 - editorial

The evolution of presentations at E3 - editorial

Heraclitus gave birth to one of my favorite aphorisms: "panta rei". If you think about it, this very brief expression can be contextualized anywhere, even in the videogame world. Everything flows, everything is renewed and brings with it new facets. We could say that the playful market is a stream that brings with it new, constant, ideas. Sometimes, however, that limpid body of water is hindered by specific dynamics and causes.

The most striking element that, of course, has changed the way of presenting the new games is the pandemic. The latter has inflicted numerous injuries of various kinds: inevitably both from a purely health, economic and commercial point of view. In fact, last year many events were canceled to comply with anti-Covid regulations, as well as the release of many titles was inevitably postponed.

The positive side of all this, however, was the way to get up despite everything, as well as to shape situations based on what one had available. For now we have to forget about those wonderful and nostalgic occasions between the stands of the big publishers. There where, between one station and another, common emotions permeated: adrenaline and curiosity. Sure, there was also the visible fatigue marked on people's faces, but it was certainly worth it.

A single trailer could give you goosebumps even before you discover the gameplay.

Watch on YouTube. Rather, I would like to give you some memories related to E3 and, consequently, analyze how this event has evolved over the years. The presentation of the games has certainly been subject to changes, some due to a simple evolution that goes hand in hand with our generation. I remember that year when I discovered the Assassin's Creed Revelations trailer; I was delighted, a little for the editing which in those years seemed to be something innovative, a little for the musical pearl of Woodkid.

Here, there is a fine line between cinematic trailers and gameplay, a line that sometimes manages to intrigue players, while at other times it almost frustrates. Now the trailers, present as the main pivot at each event, do not always manage to be really rewarding, except for that group of players who await new chapters of colossal series or any Remake; in that case even the official logo alone can cause an extraordinary sensation. However, this is not always the case, and it is right to focus on the latter aspect: what matters is certainly the gameplay reveal. Rightly, I would add.

In the Microsoft conference of 2010, for example, mainly gameplay was shown, among other things of games of a certain thickness such as Call of Duty: Black Ops, Gears of War 3 and Halo Reach. Things have undoubtedly changed since then; development times and costs have definitely increased, consequently what we have seen lately are some very pleasant tastings, a sort of aperitif to unleash that irresistible hunger due to hype.

When Sony was present at the kermesse of Los Angeles and, above all, when the pandemic did not yet exist. As you can see this is a mix of strategy and, rightly so, material lack of time at certain events like E3. This explains precisely the cause of such skimpy content in most cases, and above all the need to take your own space in order to be able to communicate with the public when you are really ready. It could therefore be understood why Sony has chosen to withdraw, perhaps preferring a space exclusively for itself with its State of Play.

The great publisher, however, will be discussed in more detail by our Riccardo Cantù in a specific article. In any case, if on the one hand some negative or otherwise not too gratifying sides have taken over, on the other we must recognize the now total accessibility to these events. This is an extremely important facet: these digital events have in fact allowed a better organization, as well as subdivision of the various presentations. In this way, many titles have been able to enjoy greater visibility, and we players and editors can live this experience almost at 360 degrees. Everything just a click away.

The result has been a much more direct and effective communication, guaranteeing a large amount of content with good time management, unlike previous conferences where times were incredibly tight. Another element that I think is really important is the space that the indie world is marvelously gaining. I talked about it thoroughly with my colleague Marco Procida, and we came to the conclusion of how important and revolutionary this is.

The nostalgic topical moments of Nintendo at E3 2015. Don't be afraid: this too year will be present with a Nintendo Direct!

Watch on YouTube. "Indies have become more and more important and acclaimed over time," he explained. "The Keighley Summer Game Fest, born last year to compensate for the absence of E3 itself due to the pandemic, has certainly helped to rejuvenate the classic formula of the fair, in which everything was frantically shown to the general world audience to maintain high attention and interest. Now there is more time to show the products calmly and in more detail ". And it is precisely time that has assumed an essential role in the presentation of video games and, above all, that has created important spaces to put the spotlight on new and interesting facets.

"Now Keighley offers numerous streaming events, each day for about a month, giving everyone the opportunity to see the games tested. This gives visibility to these products, especially indies, "added Marco. We also talked about the pandemic, the evolution of these digital events and the changes that occurred, in a sense, following the absence of some publishers and plaftform holders. A situation that has favored different but pleasantly important events, which also include independent titles.

"The changing times and the pandemic have favored the creation of spaces, and these have been partly filled by the indies , which at the same time had already grown in importance and interest ". Anyone who has had the opportunity to read our reviews knows how interested we are in these works which, to date, are gaining a truly deserved importance. Don't get me wrong, comparing the development of a triple A game to an indie would be absurd. The difference between the two, however, is undoubtedly evident even in the actual presentations of the games.

When a stage was able to give indescribable emotions. "Precisely due to the super tight times to which the E3 press conferences of recent years have accustomed us, triple A titles were often shown with impactful trailers that kept the attention and hype high for the duration of the same, giving little space for gameplay and consequently for understanding the nature of the game "he said. "It often happens that once the first trailer is shown, the first gameplay arrives months or years later, ending up ignoring the expectations that the trailers themselves had generated in the fans (how can we not think of Death Stranding?)".

This dynamic has occurred on numerous occasions, often generating controversy and heated discussions among fans, or even direct attacks on developers and publishers themselves. The most obvious example is certainly Cyberpunk 2077, but even in 2013 there were situations that were not too pleasant. During that year's E3, in fact, it was discovered that the demos intended for Xbox One were actually played on PC with an Nvidia GeForce 700-series GTX.

But have the presentations really changed or have they, regardless of everything, adapted and shaped around the needs of the players? One thing is for sure: most of the videos shown are definitely shorter than in previous years. This allows you to send a clear and captivating message, but it also comes against that group of players too "tired" to watch longer montages than usual. The same goes for our articles, after all: how many readers only look at the vote and how many scrupulously read what we have to say?

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When will we be able to relive these experiences live? In the case of digital events, therefore, it is necessary to transform that one minute of reveal to conquer the player as much as possible. Attract him, bewitch him, conquer him. Several years ago, in this regard, the mystical booth-babes would also have contributed, but I will talk about this in another article with Virginia.

In short, the years pass and bring several changes. Some are not particularly pleasant, others show how much we can improve and guarantee accessibility to everyone. E3, in any case, is an event of extraordinary importance and we can finally experience it at 360 degrees by taking a look at the innumerable facets of the videogame world.

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