Activision's Unexpected E3 Plans

Steve Anderson : End Game
Steve Anderson
The Video Store Guy
| The video game industry has gone from a mole hill to a mountain in no time flat, Chris DiMarco is your Sherpa as you endeavor to scale Mount “Everquest”

Activision's Unexpected E3 Plans

Here's a strange mix of circumstances for you; reports have emerged about Activision's plans for E3, and it's a mix of good and bad news. The good news is that Call of Duty will be making a comeback at the big show. But the bad news may be an even bigger, albeit nastier, surprise.

Activision noted that it would be "showcasing gameplay from Infinity Ward's ambitious new game." There would be details about the next Call of Duty game, and the company would be working with Sony to show off the game itself. All fairly straightforward, but then the strange part hit. Later in that same report, Activision noted that it wouldn't have a booth on the show floor. That's a new development that's also intensely strange. Activision still plans to host the Call of Duty Championship this fall, serving as the closing event to the Call of Duty World League's first season, and there would be a special community event specifically geared toward Call of Duty, but the company was basically out of E3.

Interestingly, it's not alone on this one. Electronic Arts noted that it wasn't going to have a traditional E3 presence, instead going to a fan event just ahead of the expo itself.

It's not out of line to see this; E3, not so long ago, stopped being open to the general public. With the rise of streaming video, and plenty of publications showing the events live anyway, it would be easy to wonder why it's even worth showing up at all. While everyone and his mother is paying attention to the video game market at this time of year, for every company to bring out news in that interim means this big pot of press time is split hundreds, even thousands, of ways. So for the developers to duck out and contribute to the console makers' fodder pile instead does make some sense. Let the console makers do the heavy lifting, allowing the developers to run their own events, quietly, when only they can be in the news cycle at any given time.

Still, Activision's loss will be noticed. So will Electronic Arts', really, but in the end, companies are going where they perceive the best value. Increasingly, it looks like the easy answer to that question is "it's not at E3." Is this the beginning of the end for one of the biggest gaming events of the year? Only time will tell on that front.

Featured Events