E3’s Ten Most Awkward Moments


10. Jack Tretton’s Tie: Sony 2011

Last year SCEA CEO Jack Tretton’s shirt and tie combo comprised a particularly unappealing salmon pink with ocean blue. Alrighty then. At least he and Kaz Hirai were able to laugh about it. Although some at the time argued he should really have been in mourning clothes, it wasn’t too long after the PSN hack and service renewal, at least he dealt with that whole issue with tact.

9. Microsoft Bribes Kids to Love Kinect: Microsoft 2010/2011

The picture here says it all really. That’s not a look of genuine love, in fact that kid looks like he’s in pain. Clearly that unfortunate child was bribed with the promise of something sugary.

And as awkward as it may be for the children involved it’s more awkward for those watching and thinking something along the lines of “we’re gamers why the !*@? are they making us watch Kinect Sesame Street?” Regrettably we can probably expect more bribed and/or blackmailed children this year.

8. Peter Moore’s Tattoo Reveal: Microsoft 2004/2006

Moore, who now works at EA, revealed the release date of Halo 2, with a tattoo. It was novel, it was pointless. You wonder if he still has it but it also possibly excuses the decision Microsoft made to announce Halo 4’s release date before this year’s E3.

In 2006 he had the same bright idea for Grand Theft Auto IV and it’s exclusive 360 c0ntent, content  that would end up on the PS3 within a year…

And in 2007 Moore also famously announced that Microsoft was making a new console for Halo 3, less than a year after the Xbox 360’s launch. “We’re announcing a new console for the Halo nation” were his precise words. The Halo 3 Special Edition Xbox 360 was basically just a standard 360 with a  Halo coat of paint but for a moment there was a stunned silence as people thought Microsoft had lost the plot entirely and were already planning to ditch the 360.

7.  AT&T 3G Partnership for Vita: Sony 2011

There have been awkward silences at E3, there have been stunned silences at E3 but this is the only incident I think of where people actually booed. When Kaz Hirai announced AT&T as Vita’s exclusive provider there was a collective intake of boos and disappointment though embarrassed recovery applause quickly swooped in to drown out the naysayers.

AT&T don’t operate in Ireland but I’ve heard the horror stories. A disappointing decision indeed.

6. Zelda Skyward Sword Demo Fails Miserably: Nintendo 2010

Seeing Shigeru Miyamoto stumbling around Nintendo’s conference at the Nokia Theater was not a good moment for the industry. What should have been the standout moment of the company’s conference descended into farce as one of the game world’s luminaries flailing about the stage as WiFi interference prevented the WiiMotion Plus controllers from working properly.

5. Tak Fujii: Konami 2010 

“One million troops… one million troops…WOW, one million troops,” were Tak Fujii words for posterity. “If you just press the same button like xxx and yyy and xxx and yyy, you’ll be sucked,” were some more words of wisdom concerning Ninety Nine Nights 2.

Interestingly Konami didn’t have an E3 press conference last year… Though that may have something to do with their title line up.

In saying all that, that is one awesome jacket Tak.

4. Look Kids Here’s a ‘Historically Accurate’ Giant Crab for you to Fight!: Sony 2006

I have never been to Japan, much less to Japan’s ancient history. However I’m fairly sure there are not have never been giant crabs in the country. Ever.

3. Riiiiidge Racer: Sony 2006

When no one seemed particularly excited about the prospect of Ridge Racer on PSP Kaz Hirai shouted “Riiiiidge Racer! Remember that?” Yes Kaz, we do. We just don’t seem to like it as much as you did. Sony’s press conference in 2006 is worth a look purely for the cringe-factor. It was a very bad year for the company it must be said.

2. Jamie Kennedy: Activision 2007

What may be remembered as one of the lowest points in the history of the Electronic Entertainment Expo is Activision’s press conference with Jamie Kennedy as the host.

The comedian, who was seemingly stoned, walked onto the stage and immediately kicks off with some truly awful jokes and one-liners. At one point he suggested that the audience should “take a minute” in order to understand his jokes. He even thanked the few people who laughed.

When Activision employees came on stage to talk about the games that they were promoting, Mr. Kennedy apparently had no knowledge of anything that they were talking about, and instead got sidetracked and started talking about Viagra.

Activision haven’t hosted an E3 press conference since.

1. Mr Caffeine: Ubisoft 2011

This is a personal hate of mine which is why it tops the list. About 11 minutes into Ubisoft’s press conference last year the world was introduced to Mr Caffeine and oh how he bombed. He was the definition of awkward, there have been bad hosts at E3 before but Caffeine’s combination of dick jokes, that’s right dick jokes, false enthusiasm, and tired memes made him nearly un-watchable.

It didn’t help that he has one of the cheesiest grins and most punchable faces (just look at that picture) in the history of E3 hosts. €100 says he will never return to Ubisoft’s, or anyone else’s, E3.