E3 lives on as GamePro Expo

[UPDATE] Publishing and events powerhouse IDG will launch consumer game show next year in LA; ESA endorsement ensures visibility.

Earlier this year, a collective sigh issued forth from the hundreds of thousands of gamers lamenting the general miniaturization of the Electronic Entertainment Expo. The event's owner, the Electronic Software Association (ESA), bowing to pressure from members who saw diminishing returns from the multimillion-dollar expenditure the show required of them, evolved the show into a more manageable and less-costly event.

In July, the ESA downsized E3 and renamed it the E3 Media and Business Summit. The near free-for-all that attracted 60,000 attendees would now be invitation-only and would no longer fill the cavernous halls of the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Many in the game industry called it the end of an era, albeit a bloated era.

Well, the bloat is back--and it could be a good thing for gamers.

According to a memo circulated to a short list of LA Convention and Visitors Bureau members this week, International Data Group, publisher of dozens of tech magazines and producer of hundreds of trade shows around the world (including Macworld), will produce a new games show to be held in Los Angeles in mid-October 2007.

"IDG has been secured to run the new GamePro Expo show, what we knew as E3," the memo reads in part. While IDG owns and publishes GamePro magazine, it is not clear how IDG plans on leveraging the brand.

According to Michael Krouse, vice president of convention sales for the LA Convention and Visitors Bureau, IDG is estimating that the event will draw 30,000 attendees, and that long term, those numbers could grow. "I am absolutely convinced this show will be as big as [the old] E3," Krouse told GameSpot.

The new show will be endorsed by the ESA--"a very important element to the partnership," says the memo, which goes on to say the event will take place at E3's former digs, the Los Angeles Convention Center, on October 18, 19, and 20, 2007.

The event will have trade show, consumer, and game competition components and is being presented to Convention and Visitors Bureau members as a show that could rival the old E3 in size, scope, and impact on the Los Angeles economy: "Use E3 as a guide [when prepping for GamePro Expo]," the memo advises.

Referring to the game competition, Krouse said that Staples Center owner AEG is likely to partner with IDG, and, "in concept," the live tournaments would take place at the Staples Center.

The news is tangentially related to the departure of ESA exec Mary Dolaher who took a new post with IDG this week. Dolaher's staff, versed in the nuances of producing E3, moved en masse to IDG as well. Talk of publishers coming on board is already filling the rumor mill, though none have yet to announce a firm commitment to exhibit.

Confirmation of the IDG event today follows on the heels of the Consumer Electronics Association's announcement last month that it would not produce a game-oriented trade show in Los Angeles in 2007.

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Discussion

99 comments
GrgSpunk
GrgSpunk

I knew large scale gaming conventions in America wouldn't be dead for long.

rebound2
rebound2

I'm Confused. If the reason they downsized E3 in the first place was to cut costs; then why have they now created to events, one of which is slated to be a gaming expo like e3!

princeofgames90
princeofgames90

I hope it will be like the E3 (i miss the good old days)

nunomvpcarvalho
nunomvpcarvalho

yay!!!! E3 is back!... i know, i know... it's not really E3 but it's like the successor... i think everyone will be happy about this...

MadGamer132
MadGamer132

i read GamePro magazine, and i think it is a good step for everyone. well, i glad this is over. can't wait.

raquor
raquor

Okay good...next step...make it a traveling expo to really get the consumers involved. Bring it to Minneapolis or at least Chicago for a Midwest Gaming Expo. PLEASE!!! Make it similar to the Auto Show. Heck, you've got a handful of regions and you'll have the entire country covered: New York = East Chicago = Midwest Los Angeles = West Dallas = South (west/east) That would cover a majority of the population centers of the USA.

Killagorilla27
Killagorilla27

Yay...i think. My hopes are sky-high for this, but we'll see how it turns out...

khguy
khguy

That makes me so mad that E3 is now invite only!!!!!!

cjcr_alexandru
cjcr_alexandru

Now I can see what the connection with the "E3 boss" news. Bold move for IDG.

Leige_a
Leige_a

GREEEAAAAT....MORE TRAFFIC for us LOS ANGELEANS!

phrank_3
phrank_3

It seems as if most of you are missing the point of having two evetns. Especially BassMan. They need to have an industry specific show E3 for earlier in the year, because that is when the retail stores make the decisions about what they are going to carry for the coming year, and the holiday season. The reason E3 got to be so out of control is that it became increasingly hard to meet with potential buyers and press, AND the legions of fans who manage to get themselves in the door. This second event can and will succeed because it's aimed at US the consumer, and meant to drive up the holiday hype and get us to buy games. Those of us old enough to remember the COMDEX days know exactly what I am talking about. COMDEX became a smaller and smaller event (not by choice) with more focused attendees where you did business. CES (which is not open to the public) is where you drive the hype and get people excited about your stuff for the coming year. It's all about branding. I think it's a smart move.

capthunt
capthunt

pfff TGS pwns the new E3 badly now

dannyb1988
dannyb1988

Welcome back E3....i mean, Welcome GamePro Expo!

i_like_evil
i_like_evil

Thank God! You've answered my prayers!! Forget you E3! I've got a NEW best friend...

Disciple_Gamer
Disciple_Gamer

I wonder how this will play out. MId October. For holiday games, instead of reading about a near finish product, we could actually play a strong demo. This will definately be interesting if it happens.

undox
undox

Where is the show and how do I get tickets?

undox
undox

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Lord_Bafford
Lord_Bafford

finally, maybe i do have a chance to be at E3 or Gamepro Expo, in my lifetime. yay!!

cesarotromundo
cesarotromundo

E3 stinks now...i loved the E3 two years ago, with the public, the girls with costumes etc

Montague
Montague

two things 1. AdMordem, let me tell you, i have been to the shows, i come back and check the online coverage because there is just so much going on, many times at certain times and you miss most of it. There are things you can't get the true feel from here (like the full size half-pipe for Tony Hawks and Bikes and skateboarders flying damn near to the ceiling doing tricks, or the combination video presentation, combined with smoke, lights and hot actress stage performance that went along with the video presentation for Hellgate London (that was just cool). You also get to play many of the games there but you don't always have time to get to the neat aspects or you have a developer over your shoulder saying this and that just so you have a clue what to do in the game. Kinda don't get to see all the hot babes dressed up in fantasy stuff or the free stuff either. Umm, anyways, yeah, i come back myself and checked out footage from Gamespot just because i still missed so much. 2. Yay, hope this works out.

KingofTrolls
KingofTrolls

Can you sum up this article because I don't feel like reading a big wall-o-text.

MedevilDragon
MedevilDragon

If it's open to the public, then I will surpport it.

Supreme_Fantasy
Supreme_Fantasy

Haha...I luv to take part in the gaming convention. Now is my chance....but too far

AdMordem
AdMordem

i think this will be a good move. The Trade show will let us see more as the people present will understand what games look like in development. it will also double Gamespots media - 2 shows means twice as much media showing up on gamespot (thanks to the team @ Gamespot - it feels like ive actually been to every major game trade show this year thanks to your excellent coverage and commitment to deliver as much info as possible as soon as possible... actually scratch that, im better informed then i would have been had i attended each and every show.) The timing works well as the first show will give us lots of hint at the upcoming 'flavour' of games, and the later show will give people a chance to actually 'bite in' to a near finished product close to the all important 4th quarter. also Formula_50 - you will find that we get a lot more information out of the closed show as they really will 'show and tell' a lot more to people in the industry. All up a fantastic arrangement!

MasterAsh42
MasterAsh42

So, the ESA will be holding a more intimate E3 early/mid-year, while endorsing a spiritual successor late-year. . . Am I the only one getting mixed signals here?

Formula_50
Formula_50

Im all for it. I just want it open to the public like TGS is.

mithund
mithund

"GamePro Expo" ?!! oh c'mon... that's just lame. I haven't read that magazine in years but even then. Why can't they name the event without any sort of endorsement of any type.

BassMan
BassMan

This is getting silly. The industry needs to make up their mind on what they want. If there is to be a more business focused E3, then so be it, but both can not be successful. It has to be one or the other because developers can't afford to spend time and money on both events. Besides... October is crunch time when developers are finishing up games for the holiday season. It is a little late to be introducing new games and trying to generate hype at that point. Poor scheduling and stupid idea. That is the bottom line.

ClaudeLv250
ClaudeLv250

I was excited until I read when it would take place. Mid-October? Thats around the same time as TGS, effectively making the material recycled.

Ikthog
Ikthog

Of course, this is all dependent on whether enough game publishers/developers and media outlets will actually support it. It's one thing if it's sponsored by an industry association, but quite another if it's sponsored by a magazine publisher with a vested interest in all the hype and spectacle. And regardless of whether it becomes any big thing, are competitors of GamePro and other IDG properties really going to want to heavily cover it and provide even more free advertising for IDG? Hmm...

jwrebholz
jwrebholz

I think this expo might be open to the public. If that's true, they'll just charge us an arm and a leg to get in (and believe me we'll pay it) to cover the costs and probably make a tidy profit.

brightboy
brightboy

Yessss I still have a chance at going to a video game covention.

kornbeaner415
kornbeaner415

This is great and a smart move by IDG. Not only do you return what the L.A. need to improve it's ecomony, but you also date the show after TGS. Which in turn can ultimatly be a show with more polished demo, games that are more complete and more user friendly. And companies will have more of an idea where they stand when it comes to their holiday release plans. THIS IS GREAT.

xDarkSeraphimX
xDarkSeraphimX

Tell me again how this new model will persuade publishers to join and avoid the pitfalls that ultimately doomed E3? If I'm not mistaken, companies were forced to boycott E3 because of diminishing returns compared to costs. How will this change under this new "old" paradigm? Was it not Einstein who postulated that lunacy is when you do the same thing over and over and expect different results...

99problems
99problems

you know for a buisness even , the new e3 makes way more sense . but what i read in this article mentioned "consumer" . which leads me to believe that this could be a public expo unlike what e3 was .

Valen_Ca
Valen_Ca

GamePro Expo huh? Wait a minute......wasn't GamePro that magazine that was scandalized for changing their game review scores due to threats by their advertisers to pull money from them? Either way, I think that I will be more eagerly awaiting E3 Media and Business Summit then whatever this Expo is going to turn into.

fv242
fv242

This is aweful news! E³ needed to be cut down in size and become an invitation only event. It was too overcrowded...the size of the event and amount of people attending made it completely impossible to get hands on time with everything you wanted to. 2 hours just to see a short video clip of a big game? 2+ hours to see Zelda? 2+ hours to just see the PS3? It got way too big and now there will be 2 of them? I am sorry but no one will ever confuse this new mess with the real E³.

TryMe01
TryMe01

is Gamepro a name of a magazine? this is just ludacrus

KorJax
KorJax

Wow, this HORRIBLE. Not that I dont like the idea of E3 returning (I do!), but the fact that they are going against the companies who **** SPONSOR THIS EVENT (by saying "Sorry, but E3 the way it was before will be returning, and you will need to spend millions on sets again and deal with people who SHOULD not be there")... wow. This is more or less a giant advertising campang. The company sponsoring does not give a **** about the game industry, but its precious magazine. They renamed it to the "GamePro" Expo after thier magazine, they think that the huge-sets and over-crowdedness of E3 as an INDUSTRY EVENT were a good thing (almost every comapny complained about it that participated at E3), and they are doing EVERYTHING exactly how developers asked for it to change. And WTF?! October? The best time for an industry even such as E3 is late spring+summer, when games are in their deveopmental stages and when games are usually not being released. Putting it in October means GamePro magazine will get more money... and the developers will LOOSE more. This is absolutly rediculous. Who was the god damn zelot who put these greedy dumb-asses incharge? I like the idea of an old-style E3. But to be honest, E3 SHOULD be scaled down, and it should be made it so its not rediculously impossible for actual developers to advertise due to money problems. What they are talking about here is making it LARGER than E3 (it was already too large, game companies such as Bungie will not be able to afford sets now unless they partner with an industry giant like Microsoft), and making it to a date that is HIGHLY inconvenient for everyone....

AgileNate
AgileNate

I hope this ruins what the E3 owners are doing and realize what they did have. Whose fault is it that gaming companies were putting to much money in thier there booth? They could have had a cap limit like sports.. > If this is like the old E3 this will be exciting because we can now get gamers opinions, after all there the ones that make this business successful.

firefruze
firefruze

Long live Gamepro expo!! I'm really hoping that this event will represent an 'up yours' to the people who dismantled E3 to make it a professional convention. In gaming the consumer is part of the equation and to just block them out would have hurt gaming in the long term.

Einhanderkiller
Einhanderkiller

Heh. GamePro is based in Oakland, CA, where I live. :P

the_real_VIP
the_real_VIP

If Gamepro gonna exists, then E3 Media and Business Summit will dissipate like dusts. BTW, mid-october? dammit, that's when we all university/college students are having the midterm exams/assignments, why not in the middle of summer?