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The End Of E3 As We Know It?

E3 2005UPDATE: E3 may yet live on, but in a smaller, reformated fashion.  Whew!

Say it ain't so, ESA.  There's a rather credible rumor going around that the biggest annual gaming industry event, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, is about to be no more.  Apparently a few major publishers feel its better to withdraw from the show and hold their own mini-shows at their own time and location where there's no need to wrestle the media spotlight away from the competition.  There aren't yet any details about what would replace E3 (if anything), and an official announcement about this whole mess isn't expected until Tuesday at the latest.

I certainly hope this is just a bad rumor.  I do not want to see E3 fade away.  I love that week of wild gaming abandon: playing the demos, talking to the industry folks, and just generally absorbing all the game-centric ambiance.  You'll hear far too many people complain about the long lines and the slovenly people drooling over booth babes and so forth, but the important thing is to look beyond that.  I absolutely love covering the event.  If this is the end of E3 then I'm glad to have two of the shows under my belt.  Smaller individual events may better suit the publishers, but as a writer and a fan I'll miss the week of surprises and excitement.