Everyone has the potential for brilliance
E3 is a tough time for anyone organising a press conference. Every word said, game demonstrated and technology unveiled are not merely under intense scrutiny, they're all being recorded too. Forever.
So it's a tricky decision. Do you try to play things totally straight-faced and hope nothing goes wrong? Or do you use the platform to your advantage and script the meme-friendly lines yourself? Some work, some don't. But a sentences uttered at E3 have become part of gaming lore and vernacular. These are those lines. So let us celebrate E3's most amazing utterances to get us in the mood for the greatest show on Earth...
"Kicking ass and taking names" Reggie Fils-Aime, E3 2004
If you're the new US president of Nintendo and want to immediately make every Nintendo gamer love you, this is how you do it. You march onto the stage and say "I am (insert name here). I'm about kicking ass and taking names and we're about making games". Might be better if it's not quite so obvious you're reading the autocue, but I guess we can't have everything.
Why is it so great? He said a naughty word. And turned everyone's expectations upside-down by having a company executive basically come out swinging to mark his introduction. A legend was born that day.
"It's Ridge Racer! Riiiiidge Racer!" Kazuo Hirai, E3 2006
OK. It's not that Ridge Racer running on PSP was a bad thing. In fact, we're still waiting patiently for the PSone classic to hit the UK PSP Store. But it's just a perfect microcosm of Sony's underwhelming 2006 press conference.
Why is it so great? Because you can say it whenever Ridge Racer is mentioned. And everyone knows what you mean and they laugh, which makes you feel clever.
"Well BAM! There it is" Kudo Tsunoda, E3 2009
Kudo Tsunoda was demonstrating Kinect. Live. We know it was live because there's no way anyone would pre-render a scene like this and live to tell the tale. "Have you ever wondered what the bottom of an avatar's show looks like?" He asked us. Well, not really, no. But go on, show us. And then... BAM! The stuff of legends was made.
Why is so great? Because it was said with such cocky self-assuredness. Taunting the audience to dare expecting to see the bottom of an avatar's shoe. And then the beautiful dichotomy of what was expected against what actually happened. And because... well, BAM! Try it. You'll like it.
"Five-hundred and ninety-nine US dollars" Kazuo Hirai, E3 2006
Well, it was just too much, wasn't it? When you ask people to pay almost two-thirds of a grand on a games console, a lot of them will laugh. So they did. And now it's become the default price that gets called out whenever a new Sony product's price is discussed.
Why is it so great? Because it was said with such confidence. With all the words said properly. Which is why we've written it out in full up there. You have to say all of it. Enunciate. Attaboy.
"My body is ready" Reggie Fils-Aime, E3 2009
Have you noticed how Reggie's quotes in here are scripted? That's because he's doing E3 right. After (reportedly) being oblivious to his internet fame until his 16-year-old son told him about it, he now knows that people love the things he says. So he gives them prime meme ammunition like this. Well done, Reggie - you win at the internet.
Why is it so great? Because he is the Reggienator. And because HIS BODY IS READY. Or did you miss that bit?
"Fistbump" - Kinect Adventures kid, E3 2011
Fistbump was a thing before E3 2011, of that there can be no doubt. It means the soft punching of a friend's fist to celebrate a joint achievement together or a singular act worth mutually celebrating. But you don't normally say 'fistbump'. But that's exactly what happened at the end of Kinect Adventures.
Why is it so great? Because it was said so cheesily and non-spontaneously. And because it might be one of those rare but brilliant instances where a word on the autocue that's meant to be read for direction actually gets read out loud.
"Girl-wood" Aisha Tyler, E3 2012
Firstly, 'Eeeeeew!' We don't need to know about that sort of thing while you're presenting, Aisha. Much as we love you and admire you for your gutsy remarks after all those 'not a real gamer' comments. You're cool. But we don't need to know about your state of arousal while you're talking to us in front of millions of people. Especially as you say you had it twice during a show about video games.
Why is it so great? Well, it isn't. It's a bit like Kryten from Red Dwarf and his experiences with the electrical appliance catalogue . It's not right. But it's made an impression, for obvious reasons.
"Target Footage" - From E3 2005
The term itself may not have been used at E3 2005, but it was that year's show that wrote the words indelibly on gamers' minds. Motorstorm and Killzone 2 each received spectacular trailers that looked too good to be true. They were. As soon as the words 'target footage' or 'target render' emerged, they became part of gaming vernacular. Basically a pleasant alternative way of saying 'great big lies'.
Why is it so great? Because it means you can make massive, unfounded boasts about any project. It looks amazing, can't ever be turned into reality because real games don't work like these renders, and guarantees everyone is wowed. Because you're basically watching a film. Brilliant. At least nobody dares show 'target footage' any more as a result of the 2005 backlash.
"Massive damage" - Bill Ritch, E3 2006
The script for this one (or, rather, the brilliant conference edit video on YouTube) can probably be recited by heart by now. Genji 2 is an action game based on famous battles which "actually took place in ancient Japan." "So here's this giant enemy crab." Ah, but in fairness, some Japanese Spider Crabs can (supposedly) grow to the size of a car. But if we saw a car-sized spider crab, we'd probably consider attacking its weak point for "massive damage."
Why is it so great? Because it can be used in so many different contexts. There are many 'weak points' in worldly objects. You can attack any or all of them for massive damage. Yes, it's over-used, but that's why it's lasted so well. Everyone can share the joke even when there's not a crustacean in sight.
What's your favourite quote from E3?
There are more memorable E3 quotes than we've included here. But what would you include? Reggie's "I feel like a purple Pikmin" almost made our list. So let us know your favourite and maybe we'll start saying it lots. Maybe even next week, when the E3 circus starts its show all over again.
And if you're looking for more, check out All our E3 2013 coverage so far and The Top 7 painfully uncomfortable moments from past E3 pressers.