E3: 20 Best and Worst Moments, Reveals, and Announcements

E3 might have began as an industry show designed to provide builders and publishers the form of public platform that they have been beforehand denied, however through the years, it’s turn into clear that the present is actually all about memorable moments.

It’s generally straightforward to confuse one E3 occasion for one more or overlook which video games have been revealed through which 12 months, however the factor you always remember are these moments that just about stopped the present. Whereas stated moments actually include shocking reveals and unimaginable trailers, anybody who has watched E3 through the years is aware of that this occasion can also be usually outlined by moments so dangerous that they bury themselves in your mind and refuse to depart.

From fantastic presenters who remind us why we love video video games to the horrors of giving Jamie Kennedy a microphone, these are one of the best and worst E3 moments ever:


20. Konami’s Unbelievably Dangerous Press Convention (E3 2010)

Konami hasn’t precisely been on the prime of their sport currently, however with the attainable exception of the Hideo Kojima fiasco, the corporate’s lowest public second must be this really horrible E3 2010 press convention. 

It’s like Konami gave all of their presenters totally different medicine, a dwell microphone, and solely the vaguest trace of what they have been truly purported to be speaking about. Between the luchadors that begin slapping one another for a couple of minutes and Thomas Nagano pretending that he had been decapitated, this convention is sort of unimaginable to observe in the event you’re in any respect against acts of public talking awkwardness.

19. Ikumi Nakamura Delights the World (E3 2019)

Whereas it’s comprehensible that so many corporations closely script their E3 press conferences, that technique generally ends in all the occasion coming throughout as frustratingly disingenuous. Nothing kills the thrill round an enormous new sport fairly like having to listen to one other government dryly discuss quarterly stories and insider tech jargon.

That’s what makes Ikumi Nakamura’s speech throughout Bethesda’s E3 2019 convention so particular. Nakamura might have described herself as “nervous,” however the vitality that she dropped at the stage that night time can solely be described as real. I don’t know why extra audio system can’t have this a lot enjoyable with their E3 displays, however then once more, most audio system aren’t Ikumi Nakamura.

18. Keanu Reeves Takes Our Breath Away (E3 2019)

The historical past of movie star presenters at E3 is…not nice. Whereas most E3 celebrities attempt their finest (with some notable exceptions we’ll focus on in a bit), it’s exhausting for them to shake the vibe that they’re there for a paycheck and that all of us simply must get by way of this collectively. 

Then there’s Keanu Reeves. Moments after the world discovered that Reeves would play Johnny Silverhand in Cyberpunk 2077, the star walked out onto the E3 2019 stage and acquired the form of applause pop sometimes not heard outdoors of professional wrestling arenas. This was simply the proper mixture of timing, star energy, and supply that almost all E3 celebrities couldn’t hope to match.

17. “Mr. Caffeine” Takes Awkward Displays to a New Stage (E3 2011)

Look, Aaron “Mr. Caffeine” Priceman may simply be the worst E3 presenter ever. His unusually offensive humor and compelled vitality have impressed some to match him to The Workplace’s Michael Scott, however that truthfully provides this man an excessive amount of credit score. There may be not a second of real leisure to be present in his complete speech. 

What’s actually fascinating about Priceman’s presentation all these years later, although, is the favored perception that Ubisoft or Priceman might have actively been making an attempt to troll the viewers for causes that stay unknown. Possibly Priceman went rogue on the dwell mic, or possibly somebody at Ubisoft simply wished to get fired. There simply must be an evidence for…no matter this was. 

16. Davide Soliani Reminds us Why We Love E3 (E3 2017)

Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle might not have been the most important reveal at E3 2017, however watching artistic director Davide Soliani cry when Shigeru Miyamoto took the stage to reward him and the sport he labored on will rightfully stay probably the most memorable second from that occasion. 

Whereas most of us would cry if Miyamoto addressed us in the course of the greatest present of the 12 months, the genuineness and suddenness of Soliani’s response actually helped promote Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle in a method that no trailer or speech ever might have. It actually didn’t damage that the actual game finally captured the enjoyment of this pure second. 

15. Microsoft’s Painfully Lengthy Kinect Reveal (E3 2010)

You may’t discuss defining E3 moments with out together with a minimum of one botched peripheral reveal, however which botched peripheral reveal to decide on? Joe McHale awkwardly struggling by way of a sport of Ubisoft’s Battle Tag? Sony virtually sinking their model with the notorious Wonderbook? Wii MusicWii Music?

Ultimately, this honor goes to the Kinect reveal for the easy indisputable fact that Microsoft selected to dedicate a lot of their 2010 E3 stage time to point out off a tool that clearly wasn’t prepared for primetime. It’s one factor that the Kinect usually didn’t work correctly in the course of the presentation – that’s pretty customary for E3 failures – however the second {that a} parade of unenthusiastic individuals bombarded the stage to take part in awkward white water rafting, faux popcorn consuming, and prolonged yoga classes, Microsoft ensured that everybody in attendance was not going to purchase a Kinect out of sheer spite.

14. Gabe Newell Seems Throughout Sony’s E3 Convention (E3 2010)

The phrase “surreal” has joined the likes of “epic” within the class of “Phrases that the individuals of the web have collectively watered down.” Whereas surreal was used to explain a scenario so out of the strange that it’s virtually dreamlike, now surreal can be utilized to explain seeing somebody consuming a Whopper at McDonald’s.

As far as really surreal E3 moments go, nonetheless, Gabe Newell’s 2010 look must be close to the highest of the checklist. At a time when Valve was thought of to be some of the clandestine sport studios on the earth, the god of the PC grasp race himself took the stage at a Sony press convention of all issues to announce that Portal 2 was coming to the PlayStation 3. Whereas the sight of Gabe at E3 on a competitor’s stage was odd sufficient, this second has solely turn into much more surreal as time wears on and Valve slowly shuffles away from the entire sport growth factor.

13. Bethesda Hosts the Excellent Press Convention (E3 2015)

Whereas non-console producers getting their very own E3 convention wasn’t completely unprecedented by the point that Bethesda took the stage at E3 2015, it was a bit uncommon for all however the business’s strongest producers to get their very own stage time on the greatest occasion of the 12 months. Certain, Bethesda was a reasonably beloved sport developer, however a whole E3 press convention dedicated to the studio? How was that going to work?

Bethesda confirmed everybody precisely the way it was going to work by pulling off what might arguably be described as the proper E3 press convention. It started with shockingly good footage of Doom, continued with the much-anticipated debut of Dishonored 2, and concluded with a Fallout 4 reveal that was made all of the extra surprising by the announcement that the sport can be launched in a couple of months. Bethesda’s 2015 presentation set a brand new gold customary for game-focused conferences and proved that the fitting studio might steal the present from anybody.

12. Reggie Fils-Aime Introduces Himself to the Gaming World (E3 2004)

It’s not that there hadn’t been memorable Nintendo E3 moments earlier than 2004, however slightly that most of the studio’s most memorable E3 moments earned that distinction for all of the fallacious causes. Nintendo had lengthy struggled to correctly current themselves inside the constraints of the E3 format whereas Sony and Microsoft have been nicely on their approach to mastering the refined artwork of the E3 press convention.

That every one modified the very second that Reggie Fils-Aime kicked off Nintendo’s E3 2004 press convention by saying, “My title is Reggie. I’m about kicking ass, I’m about taking names, and we’re about making video games.” Fils-Aime gave Nintendo an undeniably charismatic on-stage presence that none of their earlier E3 conferences had benefited from. Whereas lots of Reggie’s quips would go on to turn into web memes (most notably, “My physique is prepared”) there isn’t any denying that he grew to become the centerpiece for one of many best E3 displays any main studio has ever given.

11. Kevin Butler Delivers the Solely Humorous Presentation in E3 Historical past (E3 2010)

For a quick time frame, the world obtained to benefit from the genius that was the Kevin Butler advertising and marketing marketing campaign. For individuals who don’t bear in mind, Kevin Butler was a fictional PlayStation government who starred in a sequence of commercials that featured him answering numerous questions from PlayStation followers. They have been genuinely humorous and intelligent adverts that broke the mould of awkward online game commercials in an enormous method.

Whereas actor Jerry Lambert’s look at E3 2010 because the one and solely Kevin Butler might have been an utter catastrophe, it as a substitute turned out to be one of many few makes an attempt at a humorous E3 presentation that was truly humorous. Really, it is likely to be the one comedic E3 presentation to not fully bomb. Butler quip that “Gaming is having a ridiculously large TV in a tiny one-bedroom condo” and nonetheless lives in infamy.

10. Jamie Kennedy Secures His Standing Because the Worst E3 Celeb Presenter Ever (E3 2007)

On the exact opposite finish of the Kevin Butler presentation, we now have Mr. Jamie Kennedy. Now, a few of you lucky souls might have by no means heard of Kennedy. If that’s the case, simply know that Kennedy was a self-stylized comic who specialised in mocking different individuals. As an example, if he observed you have been a bigger particular person, he might make an observation about your extra fats and proceed to make a 50-year-old commentary about the way it might have an effect on your day by day life. He presumably made hundreds of thousands of {dollars} doing this.

Kennedy’s profession low level often is the second that he drunkenly took the stage at Activision’s E3 2007 convention and proceeded to placed on a miniature comedy spectacle that solely these with an irregular tolerance for awkward comedy will ever be capable to watch in full. It was dangerous sufficient that Kennedy wasn’t humorous (“Neversoft…wasn’t that the primary title for Viagra?”), however when he resorted to insulting the viewers and business, he ensured that he would turn into the gold customary for awkward E3 movie star presenters.

9. The Remaining Fantasy VII Remake Genuinely Surprises Hundreds of thousands (E3 2015)

At a sure level, online game needs flip into inside jokes. The obvious instance of this phenomenon is actually Half-Life 3, however there are various video games which followers dream of and discuss for therefore lengthy that they finally turn into memes. For years, Final Fantasy VII‘s remake was such a game. Sq. Enix had used footage of such a title as a part of a tech demo, however followers lengthy stopped believing the studio would truly make it.

That’s till E3 2015 when Remaining Fantasy followers internationally have been instantly taking a look at a really actual remake of Remaining Fantasy VII. This can be a deceivingly easy second within the historical past of E3 that’s amplified by simply how uncommon it’s for a sport like Remaining Fantasy VII to truly seem at E3. Whereas the remake nonetheless isn’t out but – which is never a fantastic signal – the second of the reveal itself actually summarizes why E3 is usually a really particular occasion

8. Half-Life 2 Exceeds Inconceivable Expectations (E3 2003)

In 2003, Half-Life 2 was about as legendary to the common gamer as Half-Life 3 is now. Most individuals knew that Valve was going to launch a brand new Half-Life, however few felt that there was any likelihood of the sequel surpassing the usual the unique had set. Half-Life was one of the most revolutionary games ever made. To persuade everybody that Half-Life 2 was going to be simply as particular, Valve would have wanted to place collectively fairly the presentation.

So, that’s what they did. The primary Half-Life 2 footage showcased issues that players merely had by no means seen earlier than. True physics-based fight, the revolutionary gravity gun, A.I. that felt dynamic, and seamless cinematic storytelling all highlighted a roughly 20-minute video that left players feeling like they’d simply seen the thrilling way forward for the business play out earlier than their eyes. It’s all the things you hope a significant sport reveal will probably be.

7. A Single Battle Almost Determines the Xbox One/PlayStation 4 Console Battle (E3 2013)

At E3 2013, Microsoft and Sony have been scheduled to disclose their respective next-gen consoles. Microsoft, who was coming off the wildly profitable Xbox 360, kicked off the festivities with an Xbox One presentation that many have since described as the corporate’s greatest failure. The preliminary Xbox One design was not solely costly and reliant on the controversial Kinect however required customers to at all times be on-line, wasn’t backward appropriate, and should or might not have allowed individuals to play used video games. It was a spectacular PR catastrophe.

Sony adopted that up with a PS4 reveal that was merely chic. Not solely was the PlayStation 4 cheaper than the Xbox One, however Sony even modified its deliberate convention in ways in which allowed them to take loads of photographs at Microsoft’s failed Xbox One reveal. It was a presentation designed to please the plenty and it succeeded in each method attainable. Whereas many E3s function console struggle battles, few battles have ever ended up dictating the success of particular person consoles fairly the way in which that this one did.

6. For Higher and Worse, the Halo 2 Reveal Units a New Normal (E3 2003)

You needed to be round for Halo to really recognize what Halo meant. Halo not solely gave hundreds of thousands a cause to purchase the Xbox; it confirmed those self same players that consoles might provide up a first-person shooter expertise largely free from compromise. It was a novel title that grew to become a real phenomenon in a matter of weeks. For sure, the hype surrounding an eventual sequel was at a fevered pitch by the point E3 2003 rolled round.

The Halo 2 reveal represents the great and dangerous of E3 sport reveals. The great is clearly the second of the reveal itself. The primary footage of Halo 2 acquired an audible “pop” of applause sometimes reserved for main moments throughout championship video games. It was a wave of aid and anticipation simply gushing out at full drive. On the dangerous aspect of issues is what occurred after the unimaginable footage aired. Bungie later admitted that they might not replicate the footage that they confirmed at E3 and needed to mainly rebuild Halo 2 from scratch. The success of the Halo 2 reveal and the unreasonable hype it generated has come to be all too typical.

5. The Zelda: Twilight Princess Trailer Caps off Nintendo’s Best E3 Presentation (E3 2004)

It’s straightforward to make enjoyable of Nintendo. Enjoyable, too. As an example, one might say one thing like, “Why did Nintendo cross the street? As a result of it was the least environment friendly method attainable of attending to the place they have been going.” For as many, many errors as Nintendo has made at E3 through the years, the corporate’s 2004 presentation stands as the corporate’s one good presentation. Not solely did it function the aforementioned Reggie Fils-Aime introduction, but it surely launched players to the Nintendo DS (arguably the best handheld gaming system ever made) and even supplied up the primary public reference to the console that might turn into the Nintendo Wii.

Nonetheless, one of the best was actually saved for final. At a time when many Zelda followers have been nonetheless upset that Nintendo had deserted a extra mature model of Zelda sport in favor of Wind Waker’s Saturday morning cartoon visuals, Nintendo got here alongside and debuted the decidedly mature and darkish first trailer for Twilight Princess. The reveal was topped off by Shigeru Miyamoto gracing the stage with protect and sword gleefully in hand. It was the form of second that solely Nintendo might ship.

4. Killzone 2’s First Footage Kicks Off 12+ Years of Trailer Controversy (E3 2005)

In some ways, E3 is about hope. People who watch it are actually hoping they may see nice video games revealed for the primary time, however in addition they hope that E3 will present them one thing completely sudden. Not a sport or a console essentially, however slightly a quick glimpse into an unimaginable future. In 2005, Sony supplied that window into the longer term after they revealed the primary trailer for Killzone 2. To say that Killzone 2 appeared higher than every other sport available on the market at the moment can be a drastic understatement. Killzone 2 appeared prefer it was hand-delivered from 10 years into the longer term.

Really, that’s not too far off. Proper after the Killzone 2 footage stopped rolling, hypothesis in regards to the authenticity of the footage started. The dialog that adopted included phrases like “in-engine footage” which have now turn into all too commonplace in a world the place doctored trailers are completely regular. For higher or worse, the Killzone 2 footage was a real innovator.

3. Sony Virtually Kills the PlayStation Model with One Terrible Presentation (E3 2006)

We’ve picked on Microsoft’s dangerous E3 displays a few occasions all through this checklist – with good cause, thoughts you – however within the curiosity of full equity, let’s discuss why no firm’s E3 presentation will ever be fairly as disastrous as Sony’s E3 2006 spectacular. Sony’s 2006 E3 convention revolved across the formal reveal of the PlayStation 3. Provided that the PlayStation 2 was far and away the world’s hottest console, the reveal of the PlayStation 3 ought to have been a easy method for Sony to retain its market dominance.

As a substitute, they seemingly went out of their approach to sink the PlayStation title. It started humbly sufficient with the reveal of the PlayStation 3’s gaudy $599 worth level (for the highest tier mannequin) and continued when the Genji growth group promised to point out us a sport primarily based on genuine Japanese historical past earlier than revealing footage of gamers attacking an enormous enemy crab’s glowing weak level for enormous injury. That is additionally the convention that gave us the “Riiiiiiddddgggee Racer!” meme, the world’s dullest tech footage, and the promise of a gimmick-free console that was instantly undone by the introduction of three or 4 main console gimmicks.

2. Steel Gear Strong 2 Makes Video games the Star of E3 (E3 2000)

In its early days, E3 was way more of a standard business commerce present. Whereas early E3 conventions featured occasional surprises, huge bulletins, and all the standard spectacle, the primary E3 exhibits didn’t actually emphasize the joy of particular person sport reveals. Usually talking, expertise and business dominated the day.

In some ways, Steel Gear Strong 2 modified that dynamic. The Steel Gear Strong 2 trailer proven at E3 2000 was lengthy (over 19 minutes), historically cinematic, and completely devoid of developer voiceover. It wasn’t fairly the form of trailer you’d count on to precede the discharge of a significant movie, but it surely was actually totally different from any sport trailer launched earlier than it. Even individuals who didn’t care about Steel Gear Strong walked away from the occasion speaking about this footage. From that time on, builders knew {that a} single sport might dominate E3 headlines.

1. Sony Establishes Two Dynasties with a Single Quantity (E3 1995)

In some methods, it’s applicable that the very first E3 featured the definitive E3 second. Then once more, given how a lot E3 has advanced through the years, it’s additionally considerably shocking that no second has ever topped this showstopping reveal.

It started with the Sega Saturn. Sega took to the standard E3 1995 stage and debuted a sizzle reel of all the good issues the Sega Saturn might do and the way it will change the world ceaselessly. It was your customary E3 presentation full with awkward live-action segments. Shortly thereafter, a Sega exec knowledgeable these in attendance that they might buy the Sega Saturn proper now for the low worth of $399. He then confidently exited the stage at which level the gentleman from Sony took to the platform, stated “$299,” and exited. By undercutting the Sega Saturn by $100, Sony sealed the destiny of the Sega Saturn in North America. Within the course of, they kicked off a wholly new period of gaming and established E3 because the one must-watch present yearly.

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