The Electronic Entertainment Expo has been a part of my life since I was in my teens, spending hours of my summer watching the action on Tech TV/G4. It has always been an event where I gather up my friends and we just absorb everything the industry has to offer. Over the years though, especially with me now being able to examine the game industry with more accuracy, I’ve noticed a shift away from making games fun to making games profitable. Year after year, we’ve gotten nicely dressed people delivering scripted lines on stages, filled with buzzwords and grand promises. Devolver Digital held their own pre-recorded presentation, making a commentary on just what they think of things.
Not only did this presentation parody E3 in spectacular fashion, but it also was a valiant rebellion against industry norms. Devolver Digital have always done their own thing, with many of their games featuring a darker tone and often extreme violence. They walk their own path and couldn’t give a damn about what colleagues think, while fostering pure creativity. This is why I’ve always enjoyed what the studio has done; they’re an antithesis to the game industry.
Not only did we get a press event filled with cursing and calling out the practices of major companies, but things take a dark turn towards the end. Audience members lose limbs, but continue to play poorly built games mindlessly. Early access is jabbed at repeatedly to the point of bloody aneurysm. The laughter slowly turned to horror as the audience slowly realized the trauma consumers have been celebrating for decades.
Through the entire event I laughed at the sheer brilliance of what was being shown. Aware that their studio is much smaller, Devolver Digital wasn’t afraid to poke fun at themselves and stand out by putting the spotlight, not on their games, but the state of the industry.
Unfortunately, this genius didn’t carry over to the talk show style stream that followed, but I could have just been missing out on a joke or something.
Either way, Devolver Digital put out one of the most memorable press events I have ever seen from E3, one that will be a focal point of discussion for many years. Bravo Devolver Digtal, bravo.
Tell us what you thought about the Devolver Digital event in the comments below or on social media. I’d love to discuss this event in greater detail. Be sure to check out their official website for some awesome games coming soon.
Featured image created by Paul Joosten. Used with permission.