Josh Drescher, Associate Producer for Warhammer Online

Dear E3,

I’m sorry I doubted you.  When you said you wanted
to “slim down” I foolishly told you that I liked
you just the way you were.  I can see now that you had very
good reasons to cut away some of the fat.  The New E3 is
actually pretty great.

Now, to be fair, it IS a different kind of E3.  When you
approach the convention center there are no hundred foot high banners
or helicopters circling the building and when you get inside there are
no huddled masses yearning to breathe the free-air of exclusive sneak
peek trailers and free inflatable swords.  But that seems to
largely be a sign that the “signal to noise” ratio
has improved greatly.

Sure, we don’t have cannons firing small armies of
bikini-clad, swag-wielding lasses into a sweaty, frothing mob of fans,
but we DO have a pretty darn good video game show.  I stand by
my previous statements – I miss the fans.  But the
show is well-run, streamlined and generally great for showing off games
like ours.

We were comfortably nestled in E3’s “Special Room
of Awesomeness” along with our good friends working on style="font-style: italic;">Mercs II, style="font-style: italic;">Dead Space, style="font-style: italic;">Mirror’s Edge and
(beware the excellence of iPhone Spore
– you’ve been warned) – among others
– and we had what I can only describe as a kick-ass day.

We tore through about six demos per hour, offering anyone who was
willing to ignore what we had to say the chance to just hop onto our
live beta servers – note: PLURAL – and see for
themselves what the game is like.  Why listen to what we have
to say when you can just play for yourself?  I’m no
journalist, but it seems like an easy choice.

Note to the Press: We’re here all week.   I
dare you to come take the Warhammer Online Beta Challenge. 
Give us 30 minutes (and let’s be honest –
you’ve DEFINITELY got the time) and we’ll blow your
face off with our game.  Ask us about open grouping. 

Now, because the show was so well-run, I actually had very little time
to run around because the press came fast and furious.  In
fact, I only managed to really sneak into our next-door
neighbors’ booth (Square Enix) and even that was only for a
few minutes.  I will say that their  style="font-style: italic;">Song Summoner iPod
game looks truly interesting.  I didn’t get much
time to fuss about with it, but it passed the “games my
fiancée would love” test pretty nicely. 
So, to our friends at Square Enix:  My fiancée
would love a free copy!

But enough shameless begging for freebies.

What of the SWAG?

I am sorry to say that swag seems to be a thing of the past. 
Nearly everyone seemed to have a Fallout
Viewmaster thingy and I’ll admit that it was
cool when I initially looked through it.  But then I was stuck
holding a Viewmaster and let’s be honest – the
replay value is limited.  They ain’t exactly useful
these days.  We spent no small amount of time clearing our
common areas of discarded Viewmasters throughout the day.

Perhaps that’s one of many signs that the show has
matured.  I go into Day Three with cautious but well-founded
optimism.  Keep your eyes peeled, True Believers. 
Much of interest is yet to come!

P.S. Happy birthday to my good pal Tammy, EA Marketing Superstar!

P.P.S. Expect a late filing tomorrow as we’re heading out to
the official EA Rock
Rockstravaganza and The Hickman demands full-out
participation from all of his minions.

P.P.P.S. Rock Band II

(Editor's Note: You can read all of Josh's blog posts by clicking here!

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Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016