E3 Rumor: Bobby Kotick barred from Battlefield 3 demo

E3's million-dollar hardware, shareholder scrutiny and presentations heavy with boardroom-speak are all fine reminders that, yes, videogames are serious business. However, E3 is also – if you believe an anecdote doing the rounds – a place where grown men get into altercations over letting each other play their army-man games. And in this case, Bobby Kotick went home empty handed.

Above: "Sir, get back in line! I don't care if you're the CEO of the Moon!"

EA's Battlefield 3, demoed in an invite-only champagne-room, was off-limits to the general public during the show. In an environment where exclusivity is currency, the game had no shortage of would-be testers, and – according to an informant speaking anonymously to CVG – Kotick's PA attempted to have her boss added to the list, only to be told this “would not be possible.”

Activision's PR guy, Dan Amrich, counters that the story “is not true. Did not happen.” Who do you believe: an anonymous tipster, or Activision? Would you like this story to be true? Or does this sort of industry-insider chitchat just waste time you'd rather spend playing army-man games for yourself?

June 9, 2011




  • BleedingHatMcGillicutty - June 11, 2011 3:56 p.m.

    @oneshotfinch They're Childish because they didn't want the ceo of their biggest competitor at an exclusive event? If it even happened, that is.
  • QWERTYCommander - June 11, 2011 3:14 p.m.

    @HereComesTheHypeTrainCHOOCHOO I actually would say that Bill gates being barred from the Wii U demo would be childish, since there were photos of Shigeru and Bill watching people play Kinect and demoing the PSP Go. Also, I just got an Arabic CAPTCHA.
  • HereComesTheHypeTrainCHOOCHOO - June 11, 2011 2:42 p.m.

    I trust what Dan Amrich says about as much as I trust what Peter Molyneux says about his upcoming games. Both are infamous spin doctors who are paid to lie and muddy the waters to make their products shine in the best possible light. If Bill Gates wanted to get access to a private demo of the Nintendo Wii U and got turned away would you same guys still be saying that Nintendo was "being downright childish if it's true"? Why would you show your upcoming features to a clear competitor when there is still enough time for them to "take inspiration" from them?
  • MySistersMenstruationTastesFunny - June 11, 2011 2:42 p.m.

    Both games are still in development. Why on earth would you let the other team in your locker room when you're going over plays.
  • PastorOfMuppets - June 11, 2011 11:53 a.m.

    This is how business works. True or not the short version is I still love video games.
  • 4fromK - June 11, 2011 7 a.m.

    Looks like someone else didn't finish the article before commenting. Lol. But I agree that this reflects more poorly on EA than Activision. But I'd also tend to believe Dan more than a faceless insider from a company that is straining so hard to beat MW3, they give it free publicity at every press event. Why They are even comparing BF3 to MW3 is beyond me, as a marginal fan of both series I can see that they are kind of similar superficially, but not when you look closer.
  • 4fromK - June 11, 2011 6:56 a.m.

    This was debunked at least a day ago. Someone should be following Dan on twitter
  • Crabhand - June 11, 2011 6:44 a.m.

    I would love it to be true, just for the sake of a laugh. Doesn't really matter either way, it isn't like it affects anything.
  • avantguardian - June 11, 2011 4:17 a.m.

    this just sad. for myriad reasons, not the least of which is the perpetuating of these invisible "wars" between game companies. yes, they do compete for sales and whatnot, but there is PLENTY of room for ea and activision to have their little army man games (lets face it, any decent fps fan who doesn't buy games with their allowance will probably get BOTH mw3 and bf3), without demeaning the entirety of video game culture with their douchbaggery. seriously, fellas, grow the fuck up. and gr, i love you guys, but you're not helping by making this a story. also, i trust amrich as far as i can throw him. he's a talking head, acti's deflector shield using his past cred to confuse irate gamers who rally against acti into thinking, "but dan says it ain't so!" trust noone, particularly those hired by companies to shovel shit into your eyes/ears.
  • lilspooky - June 11, 2011 12:57 a.m.

    If this is true it makes sense. Why would you let your major competitor look at your work in progress product. Sounds like a huge conflict of interest.
  • EwoksTasteLikeChicken - June 11, 2011 12:02 a.m.

    I love Dan as much as the next guy, but I really could see this being true.
  • KippDynamite - June 10, 2011 11:06 p.m.

    "To tell you the truth, I was a bit concerned about Battlefield 3, but since I've played it I'm not worried at all. Modern Warfare 3 is much better." -Alternate Universe Bobby Kotick That's why EA said no.
  • ThatGuyFromTV - June 10, 2011 10:53 p.m.

  • irrkan - June 10, 2011 10:43 p.m.

    Oh boo hoo.
  • Rockmotron9000 - June 10, 2011 10:34 p.m.

    also, for what reason would Kotick want to play this? what i mean is, i doubt he has the critical or technical eye to glean much from the experience, not much that could be used anyway. i'm sure that if their goal was to gain a competitive advantage by playing the game, Activision would have sent someone else in, maybe someone who is actually working on a game. I find it unlikely that Kotick tried to get in to play BF3, but i would think that, if he did try, the only reason i can think of is to get a general idea of what BF3 is doing (destructible environments, graphics, etc.). again, i would think that someone with more technical savvy would be better suited for a "scouting mission". i'd have let him play it, were the decision mine...
  • mattdark - June 10, 2011 10:26 p.m.

    @oneshotfinch Oh please, knowing Activisions reputation, its probably somesones attempt to make EA seem petty by claiming this happened. More likely then not another member of activision working at E3...
  • Manguy17 - June 10, 2011 10:14 p.m.

    I hope its true, anything that may be an issue for kotick is good right?
  • PopularBluesMagicianSandyCabbage - June 10, 2011 10:12 p.m.

    Since Dan got hired by Activision, it kinda seems like most of his job is defending their dumb ass shit. Quite unfortunate. Anyways, it's a funny story to hear, even if it is a silly rumor. Also, Billy Boomer.
  • Rockmotron9000 - June 10, 2011 10:09 p.m.

    i agree that Dan seems really nice, and i feel really bad for interrupting him during the PAX east podcast. he seems really cool, and he might be telling the truth here. i feel that if the story were true, he would have acknowledged it, giving the Activision side of the story. i'm reminded of the PAX 2010 podcast, where Dan called Jim Sterling out for using quotes out of context, essentially saying, "yes, Bobby Kotick said those things, but he said them during a conference call, and he was making a joke." not defending Activision here, i personally even refuse to buy their products, just offering my thoughts
  • oneshotfinch - June 10, 2011 10:04 p.m.

    How could this be bad press for Activision? This is EA being downright childish if it's true.

Showing 1-20 of 23 comments

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