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Abandon All Fun Ye Who Enter Here

Press hatWith another E3 behind us it must mean that it's time for the annual slew of articles that look down on those who get caught up in the moment at E3 press conferences and media briefings.  The latest such piece comes to us from Joystiq:

It's unfortunate, however, that many members of the E3 "press" failed to quell their enthusiasm. I now recall in embarrassment the hoots and yells that routinely break out at E3 press conferences, particularly the Nintendo conference. Such ad-hoc outbursts of passion are appropriate at a pep rally, or at an Evangelical telethon, but they're completely out of place in a room that's supposedly full of members of the press (wouldn't be much of a press conference without press there, would it?).

Remember, gang, no having fun out there!  Be serious and stone-faced and refuse to crack a smile, lest you lose your objectivity.  But seriously, let's remember that video game journalism is on a different level than investigating the Watergate break-in.  I can't speak for my colleagues, but I know that I'm out there to have fun in addition to critique game demos and report on new developments.  If I can't be happy about my work then why am I doing it?

Yoshi's Island 2 It can be difficult not to be swept up in the product announcement flood.  For instance, when the logo for Yoshi's Island 2 appeared on Nintendo's media briefing screen at E3 my smile lit up and, yes, I clapped.  The original Yoshi's Island was a complete fun fest from start to finish.  I spent some great weeks with that game, memorable times that I look back on with fond memories.  Now I see that the beloved game is coming back for a second round nearly a decade later and I'm not allowed to be enthusiastic?  Of course I'm going to react favorably.  Then on the E3 show floor I had a chance to sit down with the game demo and smiled all the while.  I enjoyed the demo.  Chances are I'll enjoy the final game when it comes out.  It most likely won't be perfect though, and I can remain objective enough to spot and comment on the flaws when I see them like I've done so many times before.

It bothers me to hear game journalists take a holier-than-thou approach to reacting at a press conference.  Press conferences such as the E3 affairs are lavish affairs put together to wow the audience (i.e., the journalists).  There's nothing wrong with being caught up in the rush of an unexpected yet anticipated product announcement.  The important element is to retain one's objectivity when writing articles.  Let that blind enthusiasm spill over to the page and then there's a problem.  In the meantime, go ahead and cheer if the idea of Yoshi's Island 2 fills you with glee.  There's no shame in joyous excitement.