We didn’t quite know what to expect from Activision’s mega E3 event this past Monday in Los Angeles. When we were invited, we were told it was a “super exclusive” event with the location TBD. Our initial reaction was that this was either a small party or an intimate hands-on demo of some of their upcoming games.
It wasn’t until the rumors began to pour in that we knew this was going to be something… different.
Eminem. Travis Barker. Black Eyed Peas. Soundgarden. N.E.R.D. Usher. The rumored list of supposed appearing stars kept growing and growing. Eminem confirmed his attendance via Twitter, and we realized that this was more than just a press event. The venue was then revealed to us: the Staples Center. This was going to be some sort of concert, pimping DJ Hero, Guitar Hero, and Call of Duty.
When we arrived at the event we knew that it wasn’t quite as “exclusive” as we had been told. Inside the arena, around 4000 people were enjoying the free beer and food that Activision provided. After an hour delay, we were ushered inside to the floor. DJ Z-Trip ground the dance beats, while Deadmau5 and David Guetta took turns bringing the crowd to a frenzy.
Moments later, Usher appeared from an opening under the stage and was joined by will.i.am for his recent hit, “OMG”. Things continued to explode from there as acts like Jane’s Addiction, Chris Cornell of Soundgarden, Tool, Rhea, Rihanna, NERD, and a stripper/acrobat on a 40-ft poll took the stage one-by-one for 10-minute sets. E3, it seems, was back in full force once again. Activision was mirroring some of the incredible events that Sony would put together for the show years before.
The Eminem/Rihanna/Travis Barker climax at the end of the night was intense, leaving one man behind us nearly in tears.
When we left the event we had no more or less love for Activision, as these kinds of events are fairly commonplace during E3 (and any other large conference). We were full of free beer, pretzels, nachos and Twizzlers, but still felt a little empty. We were hungry for games, not necessarily for a concert. Regardless, it wasn’t as if we were upset that we were there, just not expecting that outcome. We enjoyed the night as much as we could, knowing full well that 20 minutes later we would be back at work on writing pieces and preparing for the next day.
Here are a few of the photos we took, as well as some of the Qik video from my iPhone and Activision’s own press clips.
Link to Activision video: