NO SHOW! Nintendo not having an E3 2013 press conference

Every year, the big three console manufacturers host competing press conferences before the show floor opens at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, each vying for the eyes (and words) of the attending press. This year will be different. Nintendo has revealed via a Financial Results Briefing that it will not be conducting a traditional E3 press conference. Instead, Nintendo president Saturo Iwata said that Nintendo is "planning to host a few smaller events that are specifically focused on our software lineup for the U.S. market. There will be one closed event for American distributors, and we will hold another closed hands-on experience event, for mainly the Western gaming media."

Iwata points to Nintendo Directs, which have successfully conveyed news regarding software releases to gamers, as a natural evolution of the press conference mindset. He explained that while gamers want to know about games and investors want to know about sales numbers, having one event where both are discussed really doesn't service either perfectly. 

That's not to say that Nintendo will ignore the event, though--on the contrary, it sounds as though Nintendo will approach E3 with the same force it always has, just... differently. "We will use E3 as an ideal opportunity to talk in detail mainly about the Wii U titles that we are going to launch this year, and we also plan to make it possible for visitors to try the games immediately," he explained. "As a brand new challenge, we are working to establish a new presentation style for E3."

So, is it time to panic? Likely not. We already discussed what the briefing itself meant as we analyzed the numbers, but we'll have more tomorrow on what this interesting news means for Nintendo.


E3 2013


  • 7-D - April 25, 2013 4 p.m.

    To be honest Nintendo NEED to differentiated themselves from Sony and MS. I keep hearing "they're goinna get blown out of the water when the next-gen consoles land", but they'd do better to try and carve their own ground instead of competing directly with these guys.
  • Wateverman - April 25, 2013 10:17 a.m.

    I wonder what Nintendo is doing I mean they haven't told us anything about their console or upcoming games since the last E3. I mean its not like the internet has evolved beyond the need for something like E3. Nintendo has obviously given up hope on themselves if they don't show their company off at an amalgamation of people trying to make all the games the same and show less of the actual gameplay and more explosions and call of duty games. But hey If Nintendo wants to do something different they are wrong and they should die in a pit of tigers.
  • ObliqueZombie - April 25, 2013 8:41 a.m.

    Their tech is revealed and all that's left is the software. Let Sony and Microsoft compare one is sizes, I just want to see games. Good move, Nintendo.
  • Bloodstorm - April 25, 2013 7:38 a.m.

    Maybe they realized that everyone hates their press conferences (especially Reggie). To me, Nintendo can candy coat it in pretty words to make it sound like they are doing something new and more streamlined to focus on certain groups instead of them all at once, but I feel the real issue is, they just don't have much in the cards. Sony and Microsoft are going to spend 20-30 minutes each on their new consoles, and then blow away the rest of the conference with new games for the launch line up, and so what was Nintendo to do? Talk about their console that most people have forgot about, and all the games that aren't coming out for it?
  • ParagonT - April 25, 2013 3:47 p.m.

    My thoughts as well.
  • shawksta - April 25, 2013 6:31 a.m.

    This is actually a good move. Surrounding E3 with multiple Nintendo directs, gives Nintendo the chance to gain attention, which would otherwise drown by Durango and PS4 moves if they sticked to only 1 conference. Heh, now this time, we wont know which Nintendo direct will reveal what. I like surprises.
  • chad-munn - April 25, 2013 4:54 a.m.

    I'm interested. I think they could have the right idea. It's very true what he's saying as well: MS comes out every year and spends WAY too much time talking about "features" and "hardware things" and not enough time on games. Sony follows up by spending WAY TOO much time talking about sales numbers and figures and not enough time talking about games coming out THIS YEAR (they love talking about games coming out three years down the line though...ugh) and finally, Nintendo comes along the next day- and focuses almost completely on games, but mixes in a little of the other stuff that really put people to sleep. All in all, I think all 3 are guilty of never putting on a perfect show for E3. Because like he said, investors want one thing, gamers want another thing and entertainment people want yet another thing. The only way to make all 3 types happy is to hold different area events.
  • JarkayColt - April 25, 2013 3:09 a.m.

    This sounds like the kid who wins the 100% attendance award, and then isn't there to pick it up. Wait. "We will use E3 as an ideal opportunity to talk in detail mainly about the Wii U titles that we are going to launch this year", what, are they having a conference or not? That line implies they're at least doing something. But yeah, makes sense to focus on Nintendo Direct. Nintendo have crafted something that works and that already appeases a similar audience to E3; all E3 caters for are the gamers, the press and, annoyingly, the investors. Direct gets plenty of press coverage and gives the gamers exactly what they want to hear in a more *cough* direct and down-to-earth way that isn't buried under sales figures, trying to uselessly justify your next casual gimmicks, and all that malarky. Still...I think they had a good shot at stealing the show with their games even if Sony and Microsoft are drawing back the curtains on their new hardware anyway.
  • chad-munn - April 25, 2013 4:59 a.m.

    I like what you said and said a lot of the same stuff myself, but the last part of your post caught onto a point that should be made: I don't think MS will be pulling back any hardware curtains. I think the newly announced event on May 21st will be exclusively to show the hardware so that E3 becomes exclusively about the software. I believe that's why they waited so long after Sony's announcement to hold their own- limited time- limited attention. If Nintendo tries to focus strictly on a game day and MS is doing the same thing (not that I truly believe that could happen) then MS will walk away with all the press in tow. Not that Nintendo's line up isn't usually stellar (for Nintendo gamers) but it's the sparkles and beeps of Next Gen that the press will be talking about.
  • BottleBank - April 25, 2013 1:52 a.m.

    It's all about games, so this news neither surprises or bothers me. I do feel that if it was Sony or MS who decided not to do a big conference, instead of plucky Nintendo, there would be a far greater outcry from the Internet.
  • slimjim441 - April 25, 2013 1 a.m.

    This is a very smart move. Having jumped the gun with 'next-gen' hardware, Nintendo will have nothing to show but games compared to Sony and MS's new consoles. Well, played, Iwata. Now show me my Retro Studios F-Zero and then I'll be quite pleased. Oh, and all the Zelda goody-goodness y'all got lined up for this year.
  • The_Tingler - April 25, 2013 12:01 a.m.

    As long as Nintendo are there with the games and great videos, then I couldn't care less about the conference itself.
  • Fox_Mulder - April 25, 2013 midnight

    Saving money? Convenience for journalists? Nothing to show (doubt it)? It'll be alright, this will give Ninty their time to shine just like Sony with their PS4 reveal and M$ with their inevitable neXtbox reveal.
  • Talvari - April 24, 2013 11:43 p.m.

    Don't think this is the most surprising news ever. Neither is it that bad : | I think most people are content with their nintendo directs as of late and they're still going to be there are least :/
  • thomas1980 - April 25, 2013 2:27 a.m.

    While I think the Nintendo directs are great, I already own a WiiU, and that's the problem. Directs are really good for existing customers, but absolutely rubbish in obtaining new customers, most people don't even know they exist and even the people who are aware they exist probably don't know the details of them. Nintendo really need to shift hardware units to stop the apathy 3rd parties are treating the WiiU with. Not having a pre-e3 conference is reducing their visibility at e3 and giving more mind share to the other two companies. Marketing for WiiU has been shit, having less of it isn't going to help any, they need more AND better marketing.
  • ParagonT - April 25, 2013 6:58 a.m.

  • SirNinja - April 24, 2013 11:42 p.m.

    I like the frequency of the Nintendo Directs - they're spaced just well enough apart that we get excited for each one without having to wait too long for them to arrive, and they each have at least one surprising and/or exciting announcement. They're like mini-E3s that Nintendo can hold whenever they want (and at much less expense). I wish Microsoft and Sony did something like that too.
  • KolbitosFruitJuice - April 24, 2013 10:47 p.m.

    This is smart. What really matters to us is the announcements about the games, which we get either way. Now we don't have to sit through all the PR bullshit about innovation just to listen to any announcements. I like what he said about investors wanting sales numbers and gamers wanting games. Don't mix the two things into one conference.
  • Arobadope - April 24, 2013 9:42 p.m.

    Let's face it, Nintendo realizes the gaming media basically lambastes them any chance they get so they are circumnavigating them any way they can.
  • supergiraffe - April 24, 2013 9:23 p.m.

    I liked watching them, but I get why. A lot of big announcements will be drowned out by the PS4 and 720 info, and focusing on the Directs lets them plan around others so that they're the biggest news at any given time.

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