The Entertainment for All Expo (E for All) was held October 3rd through the 5th, at the Los Angeles Convention Center. How was it? This year, we were not able to make the trip. And from reports I’ve read, we weren’t the only no-shows. (In general, it seems to me that overall comments this year about gaming conventions weren’t good.) Here are some opinions about the latest E for All…
“…approximately 15,000 hardcore and casual gamers, developers, retailers, students, media and other members of the game community were able to test-drive the latest video games and gadgets, and attend competitive video game tournaments and educational programs…including the 2008 World Cyber Games national finals which crowned 14 national champions who will go on to compete at the WCG 2008 Grand Final in Cologne, Germany, next month.”
“Attendance at the second annual public videogame expo E for All fell 17% from last year’s already weak numbers…only about 15,000 people came to the three-day show, held at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Last year’s inaugural E for All drew approximately 18,000 attendees.
“IDG has yet to announce whether it will continue E for All next year and if it would make any changes.
“Though it was billed as a place to see the year’s hottest new games, only a handful of major publishers — including Microsoft and Ubisoft –were on hand to show off new or upcoming titles. Most of the exhibitors were gaming-related events like the World Cyber Games, retailers like Target, educational services for gamers, and broader cultural activities like the Los Angeles Intl. Children’s Festival.
“Ticket sales and game-related exhibitors numbered significantly less than August’s Penny Arcade Expo in Seattle, which drew nearly 60,000 people and featured most major videogame companies.
“Attendance is also expected to be higher at this coming weekend’s BlizzCon in Anaheim, which is focused exclusively on games from developer Blizzard Entertainment, maker of the hugely popular ‘World of Warcraft.’
“…E3…is reported to be considering opening up to the public next year after industryites complained about the lack of excitement at this year’s confab back in July. In such a case it would likely merge with E for All since both events are organized by IDG.”
“…noticeably absent at the Oct. 3-5 event were Nintendo, Sony, THQ, Activision Blizzard (which has BlizzCon next weekend), to name a few.
“…Samsung products, Intel computers, DeVry, Gamer Grub, energy drinks and Fatal1ty products are not why people paid $35 (or $60 for two days, or $75 for all three) to get in. They wanted to check out upcoming games.
“(Target)…gave short shrift to ‘Star Wars’ fans by setting up one perfunctory XBox to play ‘The Force Unleashed’..most of the major games featured at the expo have already been released, leaving little for people to actually preview.”
“Last year, we called E for All a ‘ghost town’ and it seems some of our friends at other publications think the same thing…
“…to be absolutely blunt, Friday was a disaster…several of the exhibitors – all of whom requested to be anonymous – told me…’We won’t be here next year’…”