Unless you’re a gamer, you may have never even heard of E3 before. So what exactly is E3? Started in 1995 as a way for game developers to showcase their work, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, better known as E3, is an annual video game convention held in California around the end of May or early June. The event is traditionally held at the Los Angeles Convention Center, but it was held in Santa Monica, California back in 2007.

 I’m sure you’d imagine that such an event would be the biggest event of the year for avid gamers; however, the event hasn’t been open to the public since 2006. After reaching a record attendance of 70,000 in 2005, and then 60,000 in 2006, the expo became an invitation only event. Today, only the biggest movers and shakers of the gaming industry are invited to attend the expo. This doesn’t mean, though, that gamers are left completely in the dark. Alongside the developers are plenty of reporters from virtually every avenue of gaming news, making sure to report on and record every detail discussed during the expo.

 In a lot of ways, this is the single most important gaming expo held each year. Video game developers generally spend more on their presentations at E3 than for any of the other annual gaming conventions. After all, this is where the biggest names in the video game industry premier their latest and upcoming products at the expo every year. Console and software developers alike unveil their next big products for the first time at E3, hoping to make the next big splash in the gaming world. In fact, back in the days when the expo was open to the public, it wasn’t uncommon for developers to spend millions of dollars on displays or celebrity appearances to ensure their products shined brighter than anyone else’s. At the end of E3, game critics almost always name what games and companies they felt had the best showing at E3.

 With such praise and publicity following a successful show at E3, it’s easy to see why video game developers put so much effort into the event. One could almost say that a company’s success in the world of gaming hinges on a successful presentation. And I can guarantee you, that any hardcore gamer will be glued to their computer or TV when E3 begins, eagerly awaiting news of the year’s next big games.