What was already on everyone’s mind became reality: E3 is over. The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) announced the official end of the event, stating that the Electronic Entertainment Expo will no longer take place and thanked the industry and the public for more than 20 years of history. With this, we have reached the end of an era in the history of video games.
The organization had been trying to recover the prestige of the event, which had declined considerably in the last ten years, but chose to put an end to it once and for all. In an interview with the Washington Post, the ESA commented on the more than two decades that E3 was the main advertising platform for the video game industry in the US and, eventually, for the rest of the world.
“We know that the entire industry, gamers and creators have always had a lot of passion for E3. We share this passion. We know it’s difficult to say goodbye to such a beloved event, but it’s the right thing to do given the new opportunities our industry has to reach fans and partners, said Stanley Pierr-Louis, president of ESA.
More than two decades of history in the gaming industry
A E3 It has taken place annually, always in the month of June, since 1995. The event became one of the most important in the calendar of gamers around the world, as it was during its conferences that companies revealed the next big games and hardware that would hit the market in the next years. The PlayStation 4 was presented during the fair, for example, which also had hundreds of other franchises being revealed on its stages over these 20 years.
Little by little, this prestige began to diminish when companies began to realize the possibility of not being present at the event, but still reaching millions of people through their own presentations. The first sign of this came in 2011, when Nintendo created the Nintendo Direct as a way to escape the great chaos that was the week of E3.
Other companies, such as Sony, left their traditional conferences at the fair to make their own presentations, often at the same time as the event. Geoff Keighley, a journalist who previously worked helping ESA at E3, left the organization and started holding his own game announcement ceremony, creating something similar with the Summer Game Fest and the The Game Awardswhere developers could present their projects smoothly.
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In 2019, in E3 opened its doors to the public, something unthinkable years before, as it was a fair only for industry professionals and the press. Even so, this was not enough to revitalize the image of the Electronic Entertainment Expo. The pandemic years didn’t help either, especially when more and more companies saw that it wasn’t that complicated to make their own online advertisements.
After the cancellation of the 2023 edition, everyone was already waiting for the announcement about the end of the E3but even when it arrives, it is still sad to see a part of gaming history end in such a melancholy way as is the case with the fair.