Call me crazy, but on Thursday, July 12, I trekked down to Santa Monica solely to attend the C3@E3 event that Microsoft was hosting for bloggers, community sites and community members. There were some people I had worked with in various ways over the past two years that were planning on attending the event and I knew I wouldn’t have another chance to see them anytime soon. This was underscored by the point that I would not be attending E3 this year either, so it just turned out to be a mandatory thing for me to do. Despite first thing in the morning flights and an overall lack of sleep on either end of the trip, it was more than well worth it. I was happy to run into everybody I have ever interacted with and all the Microsoft folks too. Somehow everybody managed to look conscious through the night.
It was very important for me to meet Shigeo Tatsumi, who was attending E3 and was at the community event. I have talked to Tatsumi-san on several occasions over the past two years, which is partly what led to our intermingling of foreign piÃ±atas in our respective Viva PiÃ±ata gardens. Obviously this was the opportunity I would have to talk to him, but not really talk to him because I don’t speak Japanese and he doesn’t really speak English. Thanks to our great translator Jennifer we were able to speak briefly and I’d seriously like to learn Japanese so I could have a bit more of a conversation than we ended up having. I definitely look forward to talking to and meeting Tatsumi-san again in the future. Be sure to check out a video recap of the “C3@E3” event as captured by Tatsumi-san and his videographer for their Xbox Japan community site.
After meeting with Tatsumi-san is where the whirlwind of meeting people and talking about anything and everything started. Another guy from Japan I was looking forward to meeting was CheapyD from CheapAssGamer. I laughed at his retelling of funny behind the scenes tidbits when he was doing on-air interviews with the BBC and Bloomberg. However, he hadn’t imported a bottle of Pepsi Ice Cucumber for me, so he unfortunately loses quite a few points right there. Spencer from Siliconera (and from Greenwich, where I grew up, go figure), Ben from Opposable Thumbs and I went over our thoughts about the press conferences earlier in the week. Let’s see, my memory is a bit fuzzy a week later, but I also said hello to Chris (the other Chris) from ShackNews, Charles from GamingNexus, Howard from Popcultureshock and Ron from Destructoid. I also ran into Flynn (Fruit Brute) and David (Tiny Dancer) from GayGamer.net, which recently celebrated the site’s first anniversary — you can read the recap of their first ever E3 here. I also ran into Cameron, who is a game designer at Krome and is working on the recently announced Viva PiÃ±ata Party Animals, which I was not able to check out due to a lack of ESA pass. James, community manager at Insomniac Games — speaking of whom you check out Major Nelson’s podcast for a great head-to-head between these two. Robert, community manager at Infinity Ward, was demoing the super hot Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, but I didn’t get a chance to even check that out. The night wound down and most folks headed over to the Gamecock party down the street while I joined Flynn and David for one more stop before essentially not sleeping the remainder of the night before my flight.
I know I missed about a million people, so apologies for anybody I may have missed, but it was an amazing trip that was well worth it. I hope to see all of these folks and more at the next E3, wherever they decide to hold it.
Images courtesy of the “E3 – C3@E3 Community Party” Flickr photoset by Gamerscore blog.