Some have labelled it as a dinosaur from a bygone era, but all signs point to a strong appetite for E3 from the core games industry this year.
And with big announcements for both the PS4 and Xbox One anticipated, E3 2013 could be one of the most notable for years.
But the expo’s reveal goes far beyond just the traditional market. Indeed, this year’s show will in part be categorised by an increasing interest from new sectors.
MOBILE AND ONLINE GAMES ELEMENT ADDED TO E3
E3 organiser ESA hopes to answer critics that say its expo has become irrelevant, with a new mobile, social and online games pavilion.
The new area can be found within the Los Angeles Convention Center, but away from the show floor. And the event’s team hopes this will prove that E3 is not just for video game ‘titans’.
It is not alone in looking to widen the event’s reach – a mix of new names are hoping to turn heads as part of E3.
“We already had some presence from social, mobile and online gaming last year. But we decided, following feedback, to have a more dedicated area for the online and mobile community,” said ESA’s Rich Taylor.
“This year, there will be an online and mobile gaming pavilion that will let folks experience those games in the right setting, away from the triple-A title noise and bombast that goes on. It will be more like how you’d experience games in your home or on your computer.
“I think we are a very inviting place. And anyone that thinks E3 is exclusively a place for titans is mistaken. Yes, there are a number of publishers and console manufacturers that make a lot of news and do a lot of amazing things at E3. But there is a lot of room and a lot of bandwidth out there for publishers and creators of all sizes to be seen and heard.”
E3 takes place between June 11th to June 13th at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
RISING STAR GEARS UP FOR FIRST EXPO
UK?publisher Rising Star Games is preparing to attend E3 for the first time.
The firm, which specialises in bringing Japanese games to Western shores, will be showcasing Beyblade: Evolution, a TV tie-in that also serves as a bridge product to the revamped hit toy range.
It is the biggest deal in Rising Star’s history, and product marketing manager Yen Hau thinks E3 is just as big a milestone for the firm.
“Attending E3 makes a statement that Rising Star Games is going from strength to strength,” he said. “It will not only allow us to show our products at the industry’s biggest event, but also publically demonstrates our growing standing within the industry and our support for the Nintendo 3DS.”
Rising Star has six releases planned for Nintendo’s handheld before the end of the financial year.
“We have two global licensed behemoths in Hello Kitty and Beyblade,” said Hau. “For retailers, E3 is a unique chance to get an up-close view of the games and talk through them with Rising Star Games staff.
GIOTECK OPENING RELAXING LA LOUNGE
E3 can be exhausting and UK peripherals firm Gioteck has the solution: a lounge for visitors to recuperate in.
In addition to a booth on the show floor, the company is opening a VIP lounge at the LA Live building where guests can rest and check out the firm’s latest products.
This also includes the first of its premium headset range and Gioteck is also using E3 to announce its inaugural range of mobile and tablet accessories.
“E3 provides a great platform to showcase the Gioteck brand and its continued success on the global stage,” said general manager Alan Jones.
“Our 2013 line-up features some aspirational new headsets including Dolby stereo offerings as well as a full audio, controller and charging range for tablets and mobile phones.
“The Gioteck lounge is a distinctive space that perfectly reflects the unique nature of our products and packaging.
“It provides an oasis of calm in what is sure to be a frenetic show.” Jones added: “With our booth in the South Hall as well as our upscale VIP lounge at the LA Live building, we offer both trade and media alike a fresh and memorable way to engage with our exciting line-up.”
'ETOO HITS LONDON FOR THOSE NOT GOING TO LA
An alternative event to E3 will be held in Soho, London during the week of the show.
EToo is aimed at indie developers, gamers and any other companies that can’t afford to head to LA.
It has been set up by Hotsauce Interactive co-founder Georg Backer (right), the Loading London café and The Guardian’s Keith Stuart.
EToo will be hosted at the Loading London games café, and will incorporate a mixture of games demos and live discussions. In the evening, journalists Keith Stuart, Simon Parkin and Cara Ellison will join Backer in presenting a live show to be streamed over the internet.
“We’re giving the gaming community a place to show games and talk to peers, where everyone can drop by and see what the developer community is up to,” said Backer.
To take part, email the participation form to firstname.lastname@example.org.