Nintendo Will Not Hold A Large Scale E3 Presentation This Year

By Ishaan . April 24, 2013 . 7:57pm

Nintendo will not be holding a large-scale E3 presentation, the company’s president, Satoru Iwata, shared in a financial results presentation today.


The reason for this, Iwata says, is that different groups of people—gamers, analysts and distributors—all want different kinds of information from Nintendo, and the company feels that different methods will be required to convey the appropriate information to each group.


As a result, Nintendo’s E3 endeavours will be focused on holding smaller events individually targeted at each of these groups, with a focus on software for the U.S. market.


“There will be one closed event for American distributors, and we will hold another closed hands-on experience event, for mainly the Western gaming media,” Iwata reveals, adding that he will not be personally speaking at either of these two events.


Aside from these two exclusive events for visitors, Nintendo will also deliver information directly to their home audience around the world, including shareholders and analysts, “around the time of E3,” through channels such as their Nintendo Direct presentations.


Thus far, Nintendo have not shared much information regarding just which games they intend to present at this year’s E3. They have, however, revealed that a new 3D Mario game and a new Mario Kart game for the Wii U will both be playable on the show floor. Additionally, the new Super Smash Bros. game will be shown for the first time at E3 as well.


Presentation slide courtesy Nintendo.


Read more stories about & & on Siliconera.

  • James Beatty

    It sounds like they are going to show a couple of big Nintendo direct like events around e3 with the press getting a smaller event so they can get hands on with the titles. (think of what happened with the 3DS direct last week, just MUCH bigger

  • PhilliesFlyers89

    I think E3 is dying. MS, the big US console, is just a glorified CoD event, and Nintendo does the Nintendo Directs and such now. Makes sense really.

    • I think more and publishers are starting to see E3 as this colossal waste of money. So many publishers now have their own individual events where they have the spotlight all to themselves. Capcom have Captivate/Comic-Con, Namco Bandai have their Gamers Day, Nintendo have their Nintendo Directs and other events. Meanwhile, Take Two don’t even need E3 for games like GTA. E3 is so strongly associated with hardware reveals at this point, that there really isn’t a whole lot else you get out of it.

      • PhilliesFlyers89

        Yeah 100% agree. 10 years ago, E3 was still useful. Today, ehh, everything shown at E3 is usually stuff we knew about from leaks and previous announcements.

        • Zhizn Snake

          I agree but… still, it’s kinda sad that it’s dieing out… I’m sure I’m not alone in this, but I saw E3 also as kind of a gaming celebration, like an “International Video Games Day” (except that it lasted 3 days, not one, lol) I’ve always wanted to go to one and still wish I could one day.

          • JustThisOne

            Yeah. I used to stay up all day and night getting hyped, screaming all over the internets in caps lock. But it’s not as exciting as it used to be. It’s a bit unfortunate…

            But hey! At least we still got TGS to get hype about!

          • TGS hasn’t really been good in many years though… I mean, if E3 has been C-tier of late, TGS has been F-tier, barring a few select announcements. =/

          • The first time I came to siliconera was during E3 a couple years ago. There was page after page of news each day. Each and every gaming event has seemed to take up less and less articles. And to my knowledge you guys have never missed a single step. (Thanks Siliconera staff, you rock.)

            I’m a little sad to see the conventions fade.

          • JustThisOne

            Booo. At least let me pretend~! :P

    • ForteWily

      Frankly, I think this has much less to do with the State of E3 and more to do with Nintendo Marketing.

      It’s kind of a point to highlight that the company has done this effectively with TGS for a few years now. They simply don’t go to the show and hold something for the press in a side event… which was what made the run-up to what we came to call the Wii all the more weirder, they showed to an event that they normally brush aside.

      Given how much control that they have with perceptions (and to be honest, it’s not as big as most would think), it’s better for Nintendo to simply invite others to an event, or pull a Nintendo Direct than something as big and glitzy as an E3 presentation. It would keep what little control they have over their message with consumers.

  • Arcm

    Its not a big deal since the Nintendo Direct is a cool idea I just hope for more info on the new monolith game. Since that Smash Bros., Fire Emblem X Shin Megami Tensei and Zelda are the big reasons I recently got a wii U.

  • Hamaro

    Guess now they are trying real hard to gauge interest in the Wii U for western developers. Didn’t know the Wii U was doing THAT bad.

  • Ethan_Twain

    This is good, and this is expected. In so many ways Nintendo simply hasn’t had the resources to go toe to toe with the tech giants of Sony and Microsoft, and they’ve made their fortunes by finding different things to do. I don’t see Nintendo benefiting from doing a big E3 conference extravaganza, especially exactly at the same time as all this competition. Their headlines aren’t gonna make front page above GTA 5, Halo 5, Watch Dogs… E3 is an important event that caters to the enthusiast press. And people who visit these websites (of which Siliconera is one) will be willing to visit the websites at times that are not E3. I don’t see the message getting out to significantly fewer people because of this.

    And if Nintendo direct can actually catch on as a big event, then Nintendo’s in a win win. They can reach their entire audience with whatever content they want at whatever time they want. Retro’s next game not ready for E3? No sweat! Show it in September! Worried that SMT X Fire Emblem is gonna be niche and struggle to find an audience? That’s a valid concern – show it during a Nintendo direct when it can be the biggest news around.

    • J_Joestar

      Well there is still Smash U/3DS, seems like it’ll be the crowning jewel of Nintendo’s plans for E3

  • DesmaX

    Oh, come on. Nintendo Direct is cool (And probably way more worth it for Big N apparently), but nowhere near as cool as an E3 Presentation… Especially watching live and commenting with friends

    • Suicunesol

      Yeah, I have to agree. E3 is an event I look forward to every year. To see Reggie readying his body, Miyamoto crashing through the wall with a sword and shield, and Satoru Iwata’s corporate engrish speech are just timeless moments that I just want to see more of.

      BTW, just because Nintendo isn’t really holding a presentation this year doesn’t mean they won’t do it next year. I guess Nintendo decided that doing the same old wouldn’t have the same effect in the presence of the new consoles from Sony and MS.

      I just hope that this doesn’t signal Nintendo’s irrelevance in the eyes of the media.

      • sd28

        according to neogaf that is exactly what it is also the sky is falling

    • AuraGuyChris

      We get a meme every month. This month was a ton of Luigis.

    • There’s live comments whenever a Nintendo Direct stream happens. I’d say it’s more exciting to see Iwata doing fun stuff rather than a full blown slow reveals of the expected.

  • Even though this seems like an odd move on the surface, I have to admit that I was actually happy to hear this. E3 is largely becoming irrelevant now and its gotten quite boring in the last couple of years or so. I watched all of the conferences last year and found them all to be mediocre and uninteresting. It’s probably tough having to please investors, the press, and gamers all at the same time. Needless to say, I don’t exactly have that much confidence in this year’s E3.

    On the other hand, I always enjoy watching these Nintendo directs since they are specifically catered to the games and features, so it’s probably smart of them to find a new presentation style that focuses on their own interests. I think that Nintendo should let people know when these directs are going to happen well in advance instead of just announcing them a day before they are set to go up. They could probably reach a bigger audience that way.

    I’m sure some people are worried that this will hurt them immensely, but I say give them a chance.

    • Suicunesol

      I’m not sure about telling people well in advance about the Nintendo Directs. Sounds crazy yes, but maybe Nintendo doesn’t want the news to spread that way. My theory is that Nintendo thinks that announcing Nintendo Directs suddenly and haphazardly has the effect of hyping the event more than usual, making it much more exciting. News sites will post the news immediately, fan sites will share the news as quickly as they can before the presentation begins. And hype would not die down over a period of weeks/days before the actual show. No, it’s much more exciting when you hear the presentation is not going to be in a few weeks… but in a few hours. And suddenly you have to get to a computer immediately (and tell your friends and grandma.)

      • That’s interesting. I didn’t think of it that way. It definitely makes sense. I was just considering those who probably don’t check gaming websites as regularly as others, so they probably wouldn’t see this information as quickly as others.

        • Suicunesol

          I recall in the recent Pokemon Direct that Iwata told his audience something akin to “let family and friends know about this Nintendo Direct and watch it together.” Nintendo knows the power of spreading awareness through word of mouth. They’ve always been about face-to-face communications over online communications. They probably expect viewers to talk about it with friends and family. If I told my own friends that there was a Nintendo Direct presentation tomorrow, they’d probably remember it as opposed to in a few weeks, in which case they’d probably forget.

      • +1 for super insightful post. This is exactly why they announce Nintendo Directs the way they do. :)

      • $39420547

        yes but i think if you knew that you will get this big N direct where you will finally learn more about what you are promise during the year and see what there plans are for the future you will be expecting it with anticipation

      • Ethan_Twain

        And this effect is only going to snowball if they continue showing content as exciting as they have been recently. I mean, Link to the Past 2 just came out of the blue on an August weekday. You think more people are going to tune in next time there’s a Nintendo Direct? You betcha. This last one was the first one I watched during it’s original airing, because of all the big stuff that went down in the Wii U presentation in February.

        But I’m a JRPG guy, so SMT X Fire Emblem and Xenoblade 2 were super huge for me. Link to the Past 2? That’s a lot bigger for a lot more people. There’ll be quite a bit more interest next Nintendo direct, mark my words.

  • sunK1D

    I don’t think Nintendo has clue on what’s wrong with their business…

    • Herok♞

      What is wrong with their business exactly the 3DS sells like Crazy every week and they are going with a more long term plan for Wiiu like with 3DS whats the problem?

  • Jrocy247

    *facepalms my face into a bloody pulp*

  • Geoff Kelly

    Or you could take the pessimistic attitude and say that the real reason for doing this is that they simply did not have enough material, i.e. games, to show. An empty E3 booth is pretty lonely.

    • It’s the opposite. They’re still going to have a booth with the focus being on hands-on opportunities for their games. What they’re skipping out on is a live presentation.

    • J_Joestar

      If they don’t have “enough material” it is more likely due to the fact that they slowly leak out that information throughout the year during N-Directs anyways.

  • Spirit Macardi

    A little disappointing to be sure, but it sounds like it could be a smart move. They’re realizing that there’s different audiences who look at E3 for different reasons, and instead of lumping everything together they’re making smaller, more directed efforts. So they have stuff to show just to the core crowd, stuff to show to the more casual fans, and stuff to show to potential/current investors. Could work out quite nicely.

  • Godman

    Lets face it E3 is more Tradition than an info gathering. Back then it was pretty much the one of the only means of knowing whats happening it the gaming universe, but with the internet growing evermore stronger there’s really little need for it. . .I do enjoy the Nintendo Directs and loved Sony’s press conference back in Feb (It felt just like a piece of E3)
    That being said I’m still excited for this year’s E3!

  • Now that I think about it, Nintendo probably had this in mind for a while. They did do a smaller event last year dedicated to upcoming 3DS games rather than trying to cram it into their Wii U presentation. They probably have the same idea here.

  • $29082171

    I’m okay with this, as long as the Direct is good.

  • Andrew Arndt

    agreed with u all on that topic

  • AuraGuyChris

    Well, now that promised SSB4 info will make multiple houses explode instead of a single building.

  • Pain777sev

    I am so confused. Iwata takes over and now Nintendo Direct is the showcase. This could go either way for Nintendo. This could be terrible is Sony and Microsoft bring the goods at E3 or excellent in that whenever they have something new the core will be aware of it. This is such a word of mouth move forsaking certain aspects of the National media. This is a good strategy IF the Wii U didn’t need promotion. However, this is not the case. I still am on the fence because we have not seen anything compelling with a release date. I am speechless because the 3DS can handle this move easy but the Wii U cannot.

  • $39420547

    i am ok with this as long the do a good job with the other events they are are preparing

  • Scarletmoonwish

    Well I don’t see it as a big problem that Nintendo is not during a conference this year, they release way more exciting news during the smaller Nintendo directs, it easier to control, and they don’t have to be worry about being overshadow by the other companies or receive negative hate for no reason on the web. E3 was starting to get stale anyways.

  • HerosLight

    Since they are going to stream a Nintendo Direct during E3..

    Does that mean we won’t get to see Reggie speak/makes jokes/say his famous line? or not even experience the crowd’s reaction to the reveal of SSB4? :(

    I don’t think its a bad idea at all, I’m actually glad they are doing this. Their Nintendo Directs mostly has been really good and exciting.

  • FX102A

    A bit disappointed as I used to love watching the Nintendo E3 Presentation Live most of all. Always excited at what new stuff the Big N had to offer. Nintendo Direct on the other hand by the time I can get round to watching it (as they tend to air them whilst I’m at work) the news has already been posted across the web and the excitement just doesn’t linger.

    Also there is no audience to go crazy, I mean come on, could you imagine a Nintendo Direct recreating the end of the 2004 presentation?

    But at the same time, I can kind of understand their reasoning.

  • Kalis Konig

    With how awesome the Nintendo directs have been what would be the point? I’m only going to be watching for SMASH BROS at this point! If Nintendo still has some hidden awesomes that have not been hinted at yet then bring it on! The directs have honestly been leaving me satisfied enough.

  • FivePointedTheStar

    Nintendo knows that Microsoft and Sony are going to do their huge XBox720 and PS4 reveal. Heck, we all pretty much know it– Sony has already presented that the PS4 exists so it forces Microsoft to play their hand at E3 to unveil their new XBox. These two things are going to be stealing the major spotlight at this year’s E3. Don’t our big 3 consoles have more console competition, as well? They’re probably going to be at the show.

    I believe that Nintendo is making a very smart move by not trying to make a huge deal about their presentation. Instead, they’re going to have playable games at their booths. Isn’t this half the reason why you go? The idea is that they will garner interest primarily because they want people *playing* their games, not just hearing about them.

    As for “hearing about games”, they have Nintendo Direct. All that you focus on is Nintendo and nowhere to be found are Nintendo’s rivals. Having a medium to acquire a customer’s full attention is the kind of staying power a company wants. We all know that Nintendo is BIG, so they know people will watch– which is even better. It has already unveiled many of the games that they will be bringing. Some folks have already stated that word of mouth gets people knowing these games are coming out *far* earlier than waiting for E3 to pop up. At E3, every company in attendance is vying for attention.

    Does this mean that you shouldn’t go to Nintendo’s presentation? No, I don’t think so, because they know that Super Smash Brothers for the Wii U and the 3DS is going to be their main hook to get people watching. I am fairly positive that they will be showing some more things as well– things we haven’t heard about yet.

  • Zhizn Snake

    The only drawback I see is that the masses of gamers might see this as Nintendo falling behind their competitors and that it will give them an even weaker image. I can already hear some people I know now… “but is Nintendo even at E3 anymore?” lol. Their Nintendo Directs wouldn’t make as big as a splash as their conferences as far as mainstream media exposure goes. I wonder if Wii’s impact on the masses would have been lessened if done this way rather than with the E3 “curtain raising” and “bombshell dropping” right next to their competitors. Even BBC news reported about what happens at E3, but I don’t think they’ll ever report on Nintendo DIrects… lol.

    • Testsubject909

      Put in how E3 usually amounts to “Who won E3” and yeah.

  • ShawnOtakuSomething

    ¯(°_o)/¯E3 isn’t as hype as it used to be. Then again…Nintendo might be saying that to hide something.

    • Testsubject909

      It’s been a looong ass time since E3 hasn’t been quite as it used to be.

      • ShawnOtakuSomething


  • SirRichard

    This is a good move, arguably; the dull bits of E3 are always the parts where the company hosting the presentation stops to talk about how great its sales are/will be, or how they willl expand or take over the world or whatever by the end of 2013 or what have you. Giving the media their own event will focus them more on you or what you have to show, as opposed to blearily retelling your conference after two days of legging it around Los Angeles or wherever.

    The problem, as I see it, is that several smaller broadcasts and events, even if they have more to show and say, won’t seem as big or impressive as one massive conference. And the competition is definitely looking to go big; there’s new hardware to be shown, after all.

    But, if their Directs can be as amazing and game-filled as they have been this year, I’ll be satisfied regardless.

  • Nintendo has commented a few times this past year about how the
    Nintendo directs have reached more people through social media than E3
    ever did, so this is not too shocking, and the media will report them no matter what.

    What is though is the people making a big deal out of this, saying they’ll get over-shadowed, people need to get rid of the stigma that Nintendo is irrelevant and Sony isn’t facing any problems of their own.

    • puchinri

      This – especially on that last paragraph.

  • Solomon_Kano

    Noooo. Nintendo’s conference is always one of the things I look forward to for E3!

    Don’t get me wrong, the Directs are great and I’m sure we’ll have some stellar ones covering what would’ve made up their conference in years past, but you can’t beat 2 hours of Reggie pacing about and talking games lol.

    To be honest though, this is brilliant. How do you avoid directly competing with Sony and Microsoft’s new systems at E3? You don’t compete. Sure, E3’s the year’s biggest gaming event, but let’s be honest: the crowd that watches E3 is every bit as likely to check gaming news sites covering Nintendo’s Directs.

    So now Nintendo doesn’t have to worry about “winning” E3, because they won’t even play that game. When Sony and MS have had their say and the dust settles, it’ll just be you, your computer, and Iwata rattling off announcements with nobody around to fire back. February’s Direct was as impressive as any of Nintendo’s E3’s over the last few years, if not more so. I have no doubt that this is the better route.

  • Brimfyre

    I have gotten more hyped and excited over the past few Nintendo Directs than I have for the last 10 Nintendo E3 events, so I think this is a smart decision.

    Also I hate having one stupid day to look forward to a year where games are announced. Why not do it all year?

  • eilegz

    so bad decision, the E3 its a open window where all the gaming industry its focus on your products, nintendo directs and its random anoucement cant replace that.

    The exciment the hype, all the thing that nintendo need to bring more interest into the wii u its all gone, plus third parties? seems that even nintendo abandon any hope to bring interest of any of them into the platform

  • artemisthemp

    So I guess Sony will win E3 this year

    • Testsubject909

      *raises a hand in presentation then points down to a reply made down further in the strings of comments/posts*

      See? E3 usually amounts to who wins it whenever it comes rolling in or gets talked about.

  • puchinri

    I think this is a fairly logical idea. It’s more focused and streamlined this way. E3 is always fun because of Nintendo and I like how they present things, but this is probably a better format.

    I look forward to how all the information comes to us and I can’t wait to see E3 and their NDs.

  • ShawnOtakuSomething
  • Visa Vang

    I don’t really care. Nintendo showed us what’s coming and what’s planned by often doing presentations already so, there’s not really anything to show aside from letting the trolls do some game sampling and get the word out of there.

Video game stories from other sites on the web. These links leave Siliconera.

Siliconera Tests
Siliconera Videos