I was the kind of kid that was willing to sit down in front of my VCR all by myself and figure out how to make the stupid thing from blinking 12:00 incessantly.
I usually don't read manuals for things. And I have a pretty good knack for doing things by the seat of my pants.
This all got me thinking about my recent experience at E3 this past year.
For the past few years I was a video game journalist for a small site that will go unnamed. But during my tenure there I got quite familiar with either asking the typical slew of questions that you pose to a developer who is showing off their game, or having to sit through a developer/PR rep telling you about a game, and nodding and umm-ing appropriately to feign interest in yet another snooze fest of a game.
After stopping to think about this year's experience of E3 and how it resembled Comic Con more than it did for industry to see the newest and latest games. Side note: the major differences between comic con and E3 are boiled down to E3 having less body odor, cosplayers, strollers hitting you in the shins and subsequent riots outside your convention hall (thanks Lakers). I realized sometimes I really hate talking to people. Mind you this doesn't extend to my friends, fellow journalists, and the occasional booth babe (well that last one is a lie).
There's a part of me that just wants to sit and play a game. The mere act of being able to sit uninterrupted and focus solely on being immersed and dedicated to a game demo is usually far better than having someone constantly chiming in my ear about the upcoming DLC for a game that isn't even released yet. I'm a gamer. I've been playing games most of my life. If I can't figure out how to play a game within the first 30 secs, I probably won't ever have a great game experience with it in the future, no matter how "cool" it looks, or how it shatters a genre of games.
Give me a controller, step away and if I have any questions I'll seek you out if I need you.
Then again it might be like the big box retailers, every time you walk into one and you know what you want, you get hounded by a million and one tools in a singular colored shirt asking if you need help, and the one time you actually have a question they all have simultaneously taken their mandated 30 min meal break at the same time.
This all being said. Maybe next year at E3 someone can arrange a private room, hey it doesn't have to be bigger than 3'x3' with a decent (read not 60" tv), some consoles and someone can drop off 30-50 game demos with a case of cold diet coke and that will be my E3 experience. A boy can wish can't he.
I can understand at a consumer show the need to help droves of N00bs understand how to hold a controller and that 99.9999999% of the time the right shoulder trigger is to fire, but we game journalists are (should) be a different breed. We're the ones who play games and write about them for a living. We're the ones who have to come up with fun and exciting ways to turn "it's an action based strategy shooter, with deep modes of gameplay in a multi-player environment" into "this game makes me want to shove a raw patty of meat into a blender and turn it on with the lid off, just because it's the real life equivalent of sniping a guy's head off in this game".
Thank you developers for sacrificing your marriages and kid's soccer games to bring me these AAA titles, but for the love of all that is a can of coke and a bag of cheetos, let me play games in peace.
In the end E3 is what it is. An emergence hole for big companies to throw money into to set up huge booths and create buzz around their new games. But maybe, just maybe if you'd back off a bit, and let us just play your games and let them speak for themselves you might get people actually writing articles about the games instead of the clusterf**k that is the show floor of E3.