Monday, June 3, 2013

Top Ten Most Memorable E3 Moments

E3 2013 officially kicks off one week from today. It is setting up to be one of the most important yet, as we have two new consoles trying to beat the other in hype, and another console that is trying to prove itself as anything but irrelevant. We at SuperPhillip Central thought today would be a perfect day to look back on what we consider to be the most memorable E3 moments-- or at least what moments are our favorites. Will your favorite moments make it on this list?

10) Don't believe SEGA Saturnday's lies (1995)

1995 was an important year for gaming. It was the very first official E3 presentation, and the big contenders in the industry took it seriously. For the longest time, SEGA was claiming that their new system, the SEGA Saturn, was going to release on a special day called SEGA Saturnday, which just meant it would release on Saturday, September 2, 1995. However, this date was a ruse, and in a surprise announcement, SEGA announced at their press conference that the Saturn was already shipped to four specific retailers in North America.

Unfortunately, this turned out to be a bad thing, as not only did the retailers who did not get Saturn systems early feel absolutely betrayed by SEGA (KB Toys went as far as not selling the Saturn and actively promoting its rivals because of this), but it helped a certain company arrive in the game industry with a huge advantage. For more on this, check out #2 on this list.

9) Final Fantasy XIII heads to Xbox 360 (2008)

Speaking of betrayals, PlayStation fans felt betrayed after Square Enix announced at Microsoft's press conference that Final Fantasy XIII was coming to the Xbox 360. Message boards and comment sections everywhere turned into an embarrassing display of fanboyism, immaturity, and meltdowns. If only PlayStation 3 owners knew of the quality of Final Fantasy XIII before their reactions, perhaps the loss of exclusivity wouldn't have bothered them so much. It's funny to think of the outcry in retrospect, as Final Fantasy XIII turned out to be one of the lesser mainline entries in the franchise, especially for Xbox 360 owners who had to deal with worse performance and a game split up across three discs. Still, the moment at Microsoft's press conference was certainly a memorable one.

8) Jamie Kennedy falls flat (2007)

The Electronic Entertainment Expo was greatly downsized for the 2007 edition, and it was a much weaker show because of it. However, not all was bad. Well, actually Activision's 2007 press conference was legitimately bad, but it was basically as intriguing as watching a car accident. "Comedian" (and we must use quotations, mind you) Jamie Kennedy was the host of the press conference, and to say he was out of it would be an understatement. Throwing around unfunny non sequiturs, taunting the gaming public with cliche insults, and just being generally awkward were all tricks in Kennedy's repertoire that day.

Such gems including Kennedy asking "Should I do this interview as Ozzy Osbourne" followed by the quick quip of "Aren't you doing that already?" contributed more to the art of comedy than Kennedy's own drunken and/or stoned antics. Truly hilarious and awkward, and for all of the wrong reasons.

7) Konami's press conference (2010)

Speaking of things that are awkward and act like train wrecks, Konami's unforgettable and now infamous 2010 press conference was all kinds of weird. Where do we even begin? It was a greatest hits of awkward moments like "extreeeeeme", "you will be sucked", "one million troops... wow", "love you guys", "not funny", a Silent Hill developer that stands too close to his coworker, some kind of wresting slap fest, a silly dance game that made it demonstrators look silly, and-- aw, hell, words do not do this press conference service. It must be seen to be believed. Praise Sir Tak Fujii!

6) Killzone 2 reveal (2005)

At Sony's 2005 E3 press conference, a certain trailer for a certain game got an immense amount of buzz. It was a trailer for Killzone 2, what many in the industry wanted to call a Halo-killer. (Let's face it. People get hard-ons when they can call something a Halo-killer, despite how good or bad it is.) Regardless, the incredibly impressive trailer hyped up not only existing PlayStation 3 owners, but also a good portion of the gaming world in general. There are STILL arguments to this day on whether or not the Killzone 2 reveal trailer was real-time or CG, which Sony is known to do for their trailers occasionally. That said, we haven't been floored by graphics in a long time as much as we were with Killzone 2.

5) Reggie revealed (2004)

"My name is Reggie. I'm about kicking ass, I'm about taking names, and we're about making games." That little speech started a rallying cry that Nintendo fans could support. It was one that had a vulnerable and weakened Nintendo (especially after E3 2003) coming back strong with a backbone, despite having to go up against both Sony and Microsoft and currently losing to them both. Yes, Reggie Fils-Aime has become nothing but a marketing and public relations face for Nintendo of America with little real power, but at the time during E3 2004, he was a god among Nintendo fans.

4) Super Smash Bros. Brawl reveal (2006)

Nintendo's 2006 E3 presentation came and went without a word of this next game reveal. Instead, Super Smash Bros. Brawl was shown in a closed room at the end of one of the show's nights. When the gaming world caught wind of a new Smash Bros., one with new characters like Metaknight, Pit, and Wario, and impressive new graphics, the hype was unbearable for many. It certainly was that way for us at SuperPhillip Central (we've only gone on to call Brawl one of our favorite video games of all time on multiple occasions). The creme dela creme, however, was the arrival of an unexpected character-- Solid Snake. Showtime! Super Smash Bros. Brawl's reveal was one of those game reveals that will always stick with us, and to see why, here's the full trailer.

3) Sony's 2006 abomination (2006)

One of the most infamous press conferences, and not really because it was so bad, but knowing that this conference was the starting point for a once dominant video game console manufacturer to have to play catch-up for an entire generation, was Sony's 2006 E3 showing. From the incredibly large money investment of five hundred and ninety-nine US dollars to all the lackluster games sporting real-time weapon change, attacking crab weak points for massive damage, and RIIIIIIIDGE RACER, the show is something that Sony is still recovering from. That is how devastating the showing was, proving that a bad E3 showing really can be detrimental to the success of a platform. (Though it's obviously not the only thing that went wrong with the PS3.)

2) The beginning of the PlayStation brand's rise to power (1995)

We move from Sony's worst E3 showing to one of their most successful. Continuing the story from moment #10, the SEGA Saturn's reveal was botched in many ways, from developer outcry to a lack of games at launch. The most important of which is the price tag, which was $399 USD. Sony took this information and proceeded to go directly for SEGA's jugular. Olaf Olafsson (as great a name as Phillip Phillips), then president of Sony Electronic Publishing, went on stage, supposedly to talk about game developers being successful storytellers. Instead, he interrupted himself midway through his speech, called up another Sony employee, Steve Race. Again, Mr. Race was supposedly going to talk more about the PlayStation, but instead simply came up to the stage and said, "$299," and proceeded to walk off the stage with an applause worthy of an Oscar winner. This was the beginning of the rise of the PlayStation brand in the gaming industry, and one hell of an introductory showing.

1) The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess reveal (2004)

We at SuperPhillip Central are big supporters of the industry, and all three of the big three. We have a particular soft spot for Nintendo, as all of us on staff grew up on Nintendo. Not only is the debut trailer for what would later be known as The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess and the subsequent reaction something that gave us absolute goosebumps all over, but when Shigeru Miyamoto came out with a replica of the Master Sword and Hylian Shield, we screamed like the man-children we are. These moments are what E3 is all about, and Nintendo is usually one of the best at giving gamers a good show (2008 and 2012, not withstanding). It is The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess reveal that even for those who don't care for Nintendo or Zelda can appreciate the genuine excitement and enthusiasm of the moment. This is why we have ranked it as our number one moment. That, and because we're whores for the Zelda franchise.


Those are our personal favorite moments from E3's historic past. Which moments do you remember the most? Post your comments below, and discuss your thoughts with other readers. Just think, there's only one week to go until we are bombarded with more video game news and titles than we can shake a booth babe at! Stay tuned later on in the week when we list the worst E3 moments, much like we did last year.

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