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The ESA's Letter To the Kentia Hall All-Stars

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the dear-john dept.

20

GameDaily has the letter than the Entertainment Software Association sent to some of the smaller players that used to attend E3. Despite the polite wording, the message is clear: smaller vendors are no longer welcome. With the 'focused' approach that the E3 Media event in 2007 will be taking, the folks that made Kentia Hall so memorable will likely be nowhere in sight. From the article: "Details of the event have not been finalized at this time, however our vision and goal is to create a more intimate climate for personalized meetings and product demonstrations. The ESA will announce additional details and information in the ensuing weeks and months. We would like to take this opportunity to extend our sincere and profound gratitude for your past support of this event. It has been exciting and rewarding to see the growth and significance of this industry mirrored on the exhibit floor of the E3Expo through the years. We look forward to many more years of industry growth, vitality and opportunity. "

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The message is clear? (4, Insightful)

badasscat (563442) | more than 8 years ago | (#15874048)

I've seen this said on a few other blogs as well, but I don't see it. It sounds like a form letter to me, probably sent to everybody that sends a similar inquiry regardless of company size. I don't see anything that implies that smaller vendors are "no longer welcome". All that it says is that it's a smaller event. Yes, that implies that smaller vendors will probably have a tougher time attracting the media, simply because there won't be a centralized place to find all these smaller vendors (most of the media covered Kentia Hall on the last day, all at once). But I don't see any suggestion here that these vendors cannot attend.

I think some people are surprised to see that the ESA refers to the "old" E3 as "cancelled". But once you get that fact through your heads, you'll stop reading things into letters like this that aren't there. E3 is cancelled for everybody, not just the smaller vendors. It hasn't been downsized. It's been cancelled, and a new event put in its place. The format of that new event will be totally different than the one its replacing, but it sounds to me as if everybody, vendor-wise, is just as equally welcome to attend it. How the media ends up covering it is a question for them, though, not the ESA.

Re:The message is clear? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15874647)

Maybe you just haven't read enough form letters. If the recipient of this letter were welcome at the new "mini E3," the letter would've said so explicitly towards the end of the third paragraph (where it goes on about industry growth instead).

Overreact much, people? (1)

Malkin (133793) | more than 8 years ago | (#15876648)

I'm with you on this one. I think people are reading in something that isn't there. If the small companies weren't welcome, the ESA wouldn't have bothered to even mention the new conference format in the letter.

Does this help Sony? (3, Insightful)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#15874051)

"So we're going to flip over this giant Expo on its back, then attack its weak point for MASSIVE DAMAGE."

Seriously, anything that keeps Sony from blundering as bad next year as they did this year [youtube.com] is probably a good thing for Sony. A smaller expo might allow them to better connect with gamers (read: control information via the mainstream press) than they have in recent years. Sony (and other large companies) will be able to treat the expo as one large press release rather than trying to pander to the crowd. Which means no more embarrassing moments like shouting "Riiiiidge Racer!" and not getting a response from the audience.

Unfortunately, it's probably only bad for gamers. :(

Re:Does this help Sony? (2, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 8 years ago | (#15874081)

Actually, Sony is probably secretly hoping for one of those letters themselves, just so they'll have an excuse to stop coming to E3 and embarrassing themselves.

-Eric

Too Bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15874077)

This is probably the one part of the convention that can benefit from how E3 currently exists.

If this is true... (1)

marshallbanana6 (992780) | more than 8 years ago | (#15874206)

There goes the only possible benefit of "downsizing".

Austin Game Conference (1)

LordNimon (85072) | more than 8 years ago | (#15874257)

I'm sure the Austin Game Conference [gameconference.com] (which ended a couple days ago) would be more than happy to host anyone no longer welcome at E3. Austin is a major game development hub, and the conference has a very impressive list of attendees [gameconference.com] .

Re:Austin Game Conference (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15874357)

Salutations, Visitor from the Future! How is September?

According to your linked website, AGC is September 6-8.

Re:Austin Game Conference (1)

Amouth (879122) | more than 8 years ago | (#15874382)

hot.. very freeken hot

Re:Austin Game Conference (1)

swdunlop (103066) | more than 8 years ago | (#15875195)

AGC is not only a very up and coming convention, it's also extremely frequent, with only about a month between events..

The conference in question hasn't happened yet... (1)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 8 years ago | (#15875699)

But, the conference you might have been thinking about, the Texas Independant Games Conference [txindiegamecon.com] , happend a couple of weeks ago. It seems to have been a success (Couldn't afford to go, so I wouldn't have first-hand info...). The one you mention is on my list and I hope budget permits my attendance- and it's a good place for a lot of the Indies to go to, along with similar venues elsewhere. E3 was a serious timesink that tended to produce a lot of the train wrecks they tried to call games of late...

Re:The conference in question hasn't happened yet. (1)

LordNimon (85072) | more than 8 years ago | (#15876383)

No, I was thinking of the AGC. For some reason, I though this month was September.

Re:The conference in question hasn't happened yet. (1)

zratchet (761806) | more than 8 years ago | (#15893245)

It was a success and very fun. I may be biased since I'm on the advisory board, but I and many [gamasutra.com] others [manifestogames.com] thought so too.

Probably good for the serious little guys (0, Troll)

gabebear (251933) | more than 8 years ago | (#15874951)

I've never been to E3, but it looks like Kentia Hall was filled with lots of utter crap, with people hocking ancient hardware and "as seen on TV" crap. While it may have made the show more fun, it also distracted from the primary purpose of E3; to let people in the industry meet and talk. It will be more expensive to get a both at E3 now, but that does mean you will be taken more seriously.

Re:Probably good for the serious little guys (2, Informative)

murphball (948933) | more than 8 years ago | (#15875468)

Woah, hold on there a second. Sure, some of the stuff in Kentia Hall was crap as you call it, but for the most part, the smaller publishers down there put on a much better show than the big guys upstairs. That is, if you were in it to learn more about upcoming games and not stroll through some overly expensive booth with nothing to see but flashy demos, etc.

It was the people who were in Kentia Hall who actually did E3 right, it was already a more intimate atmosphere down there where people could easily meet and talk without interruption from the noise levels from upstairs...

Re:Probably good for the serious little guys (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15875720)

Sure, some of the stuff in Kentia Hall was crap as you call it

About 90% of it.

Theodore Sturgeon

Re:Probably good for the serious little guys (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15878629)

"... it also distracted from the primary purpose of E3; to let people in the industry meet and talk."

Wrong. The purpose of E3 was for retailers to form decisions on what to stock in the year (and Xmas season) to follow. Media exposure was a secondary "benefit".

By downsizing they are basically saying they want to go back to this being for retailers, and cut out all the gamers who got in with fake business cards and what-not.

Alternate events (1)

Guspaz (556486) | more than 8 years ago | (#15875703)

It's not like E3 is leaving a big gap. There are alternate events such as the Penny Arcade Expo, which with the demise of E3, is now the largest gaming related event in North America. Many of the big companies like Nintendo and Microsoft take part, with playable demos of unreleased products, and there's certainly room for the little guys.

Missing the point (1)

PhoenixOne (674466) | more than 8 years ago | (#15890258)

Most companies don't go to E3 to connect to their users. They go to get investers or big-chain stores interested in their products and to get press coverage.


PAX is for gamers, it isn't set up to be a sales event (and, as a gamer, I hope it never will).


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