Until recently, the Electronic Entertainment Expo was a trade show meant for just the press and industry insiders. To get into the show, you had to prove you were a member of the media or an employee of a video game company. But the Entertainment Software Association (the group in charge of the event) is now employing a change in strategy. Starting next week, they’ll begin selling E3 tickets to anybody who asks for one.
The ESA hasn’t explained why it’s doing this yet, and one has to wonder. They’ve had a valid reason for turning people away: there’s only so much space at E3, and it’s more important that the press get to try out the latest games. The lines are long as it is, so why risk making them longer?
Perhaps it’s because the definition of “press” has expanded, and an average tweet from some “nobody” can carry as much oomph as an article in Variety if the Butterfly Effect works to its favor. The ESA is encouraging popular Twitch streamers and YouTube reviewers to purchase tickets.
There will still be industry-exclusive perks: business pass owners will get their own entrance area and VIP lounge, plus other benefits. Plus there will be a limited amount of “peasant” tickets, and though that limit is 15,000, they will disappear fast. The first 1,000 of these tickets will cost just $149, while the rest will carry a price of $249.
If you’ll be around the Los Angeles area next June, and you’ve always wanted to attend E3, the floodgates open February 13. Mark your calendars for Monday!