Why aren’t I excited? I should feel a little bit excited. But I don’t.
Seriously, go back in time to 2008 or 2009 or so and I’d be practically jumping off of the walls in anticipation of E3. And why wouldn’t I be? The Electronic Entertainment Expo is the biggest and most popular gaming trade show of them all. This is where the movers and shakers of the gaming industry meet to make their biggest announcements and show off their hottest new properties. The big three (Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft) have their individual press conferences which are streamed live and liveblogged all across the internet and even on some television networks so anyone with even the slightest interest in video games has no excuse not to see them.
And yet, I just feel apathetic about the entire ordeal. Yikes, I even referred to it as an “ordeal” rather than something neutral like event or positive like…I can’t even think of a word. That in itself is symbolic of how much I just don’t care about it.
Now, I have scheduling conflicts in the way that prevent me from watching Microsoft’s E3 Press conference (which is going on live as I type this) but even if those conflicts weren’t there, I doubt I would be taking the time to seriously watch the press conference since I still have other more important things to do. Years ago, I would be making time to watch each of the conferences. No matter the difficulty, I’d find a way. This year though…eh. I’ll catch up on all of the important announcements after the fact.
Years ago, I never would’ve said that. Years ago, I wanted to see the announcements as they happened, to chat about them on forums and in chat rooms in real-time. Hell, I wanted to be there as these announcements were made, in the audience, cheering and clapping alongside members of the gaming press. I viewed E3 as a gamer’s Mecca. Though E3 wasn’t open to the public those years ago, I thought it was something every gamer had to find a way to get to, a rite of passage of some sort. I don’t feel that way anymore. Now, it’s something that I would like to do, but I don’t see it as the necessity it once was. It’s off my “bucket list” is what I’m trying to say.
I imagine this is a result of my waning interest in videogames as a whole. Despite my buying a gaming PC last year, I still find myself dedicating less and less time to playing videogames than I did years ago. It’s odd. I still enjoy them, just not as much. I don’t feel the same rush when I open up a new game and start playing. I don’t feel the same excitement when a new game comes out in a series I’m interested in or have been following for a while. The most recent game I found myself getting truly excited for was Mass Effect 3, which released months ago and had me all set to love and then slapped me in the face with the most disappointing ending of anything I’ve ever seen.
Why am I writing this then? I’d imagine it’s the result of a few factors including because I can and helping me come to terms with an elephant in the room I’ve been ignoring as of late, that pesky little niggling doubt in the back of my mind that just won’t leave me alone no matter how much I try to shoo it away, which is that videogames just don’t do it for me anymore. This is a hobby that I’ve enjoyed since I was barely in the single digits and now, to have my interest in it wane so heavily as of late just feels…wrong.
But back to the matter at hand, namely E3, I do still feel a bit of the excitement I used to feel for the Expo but it’s muted and restrained. The gamer that grew up loving reading and watching E3 coverage is still in there, but he’s not as loud as he once was. Maybe I’m maturing beyond videogames and this is just the first time I’ve had to acknowledge this about myself and my changing tastes in entertainment and what I find to be worth my time. There are games that I’m looking forward to, like Resident Evil 6, Halo 4 and Forza Horizon but I don’t feel the kind of fervor I’ve felt for similar games in years past.
I will continue to monitor E3 throughout its duration to see if any interesting tidbits come out of it but I don’t see myself getting truly excited about any of it, at least not in the capacity I have before. I’m rather saddened by this prospect because it means I’m not likely to feel that “ideal” level of excitement ever again unless my interest in games somehow sees a resurgence in the months/years to come which I doubt will happen.
But hey, maybe it will and maybe in a year’s time I’ll be writing about how crazy I was just one short year ago.