The Electronic Entertainment Expo is the biggest trade show for gaming. Each year developers and publishers show off their newest video games and tech to generate excitement for the coming years.
However, there is something memorable about a presenter dropping the ball or embarrassing themselves in front of the world. Sure, game demos may crash and presenters may flub some lines, but accidents happen. It’s the moments when everything goes correctly, yet makes everyone uncomfortable, that we remember.
From Wii drum solos, to Disney cheerleaders, and whatever Battle Tag was suppose to be; these moments will live on in infamy.
Here’s a look at some of the worst moments at E3.
Playstation Conference – 2006
2006 was an exciting time to be a Playstation gamer. This was the year that Sony was going to usher in the Playstation 3 era. And while the next generation was something to be excited about, this conference was memorable for all the wrong reasons.
Kaz Hirai started it off by trying to get everyone excited for Ridge Racer. He semi-enthusiastically repeated the game’s title to a dead crowd, made even worse by how long it took the game to start.
Bill Ritch then came out to demo Genji: Days of Blade, claiming that the game will feature battles that actually took place in ancient Japan. This was followed by Ritch slashing giant enemy crabs and dealing “massive damage” to their weak points.
To top it all off, the console had egregious price points of $499.99 and $599.99 USD. When those were revealed, no one was laughing.
Microsoft – Kinect 2010
Kinect has given Microsoft a lot of bad moments. In 2011, Xbox showed the demo for Kinect Disneyland Adventures. This demo featured children playing the game while reading their scripted lines terribly. Not to be outdone, in 2012, Dance Central 3 had Usher come on stage for an impromptu concert.
However, the moment that tops them both did not happen on a stage. It happened behind the scenes when Microsoft let the media see their brand new motion control device, the Kinect. Here, they were given robes and demoed a few games for the device. IGN editor Ryan Geddes shared his experience and the best part of the night.
For me, the highlight of the evening was watching Ninja Gaiden creator Tomonobu Itagaki walk into the event in his white robe, taking in the scene behind his traditional sunglasses. He looked around a few times, stood quietly for a few moments and then turned around and left.
Activision 2007 – Jamie Kennedy
E3 hosts that settle on humor tend to struggle during these conferences. For example, Aisha Tyler’s jokes about her “girl wood” and everyone’s “a little bit gay” failed to land, making things more awkward. Before her was Aaron Priceman, who is known as Mr. Caffeine. Priceman had the same type of bad jokes, in addition to outdated references and the sound effects he would make with his mouth. Both hosts tried to conjure up excitement, from an audience that was not going to indulge them.
However, while these hosts were bad, none would compare to the train-wreck of a performance offered by Jamie Kennedy. Kennedy’s jokes revolved around perpetuating nerd stereotypes, and the audience was not having any of it. Jokes about virginity and Never Soft didn’t even garner a chuckle.
Things got worse during the developer interviews. Tony Hawk looked genuinely annoyed. And when developer made a joke about Kennedy’s performance, a member of the audience heckled, “he’s funnier than you.”
It’s safe to say, Jamie Kennedy was the worst host in E3 history.
Konami Conference – 2010
In 2010, Konami decided not to have a host for their confernce. They let the developers stand at a podium and show off their games. What followed was the most bizarre, uncomfortable, and hard to understand conference in a long time.
The entire conference makes this list as what can only be described as a beautiful disaster. It was filled with many quotable lines, creepy stare downs, illusions, and wrestlers slapping each other.
Other people disagree and say this was one of the best conferences of all time. And however polarizing it may be, there’s no denying how cringeworthy it was.
These are my top worst E3 moments. Do you agree with my list? Did I miss anything? Let us know in the comments section.
Harman is a freelance writer from California. He likes action-rpgs and long walks on the beach.