Electronic Entertainment Expo (EZ), June 19-21, Atlanta (Ga., USA), the Congress Center.
The world’s largest exhibition of achievements of the gaming sector, this time not without our presence …
On the one hand, to arrange an exhibition in Atlanta, but in June — pure disgusting. Firstly, a former center of slavery (see."gone With the Wind") And on the building of the Parliament have still flies the flag of the Confederacy (honest!). Secondly (but, seriously, in the first and the only one), there is wild, incredibly, indecent hot (and humid — see. Weather reports), and the entire population, except for policemen and janitors, it moves only short dashes — from air conditioning to air conditioning.
On the other hand, it is better: vystavlyantam and vystavlyalam and does not occur to wander the streets and stare at the sides, and is only to be dragged to the exhibition and to engage in business — especially because of all cases in three days would not change, and in that gawk there is even there, and all three huge floor glass building World Congress Center (the first priest basement and very basement where occurred the most interesting), which this year was held EZ equipped with some unique air-conditioned: there will always prevail pleasantly cool , moderate humidity, soft diffused light, and in general is great weather. I can assure you that the World Congress Center is absolutely suitable for life!
In principle, there could well do not go — like the hopper of a good: there were no problems with either the food or the drinking or the communications or the sewage system and water supply. It was where to rest — on the comfortable sofas and kreslitsah scattered everywhere: in the air under the palm trees, in small ponds with fountains and goldfish good sized bream, the tables in the mini-cafes … However, most visitors prefer to just sit on the floor, on porous carpeting, and relax right where they overcame fatigue.
On a small patch between the toilet and payphones located on the second floor interior manipulation: beautiful Chinese girls with stern faces rubbed and kneaded briskly exhibition flesh, often clad in white shirts and ties. Someone buried-but the catfish in a napkin and rubbed his neck, someone massage your lower back, and someone took off my shoes, and serious Chinese cleverly touches his toes.
A little further you can summon and agile girl in a white blouse, and clean shoes, drink coffee on every street corner handing out detailed shemki, which were marked all the stands and how to get there, plus everywhere were scattered references booths for Dumbest where polite black employee explained everything on the fingers, and even the entire exhibition wandered discharged barkers, effectively inviting to visit its stand.
In short, the working conditions in the EZ have been created with a skill and taste, and best of all there was the press (that is us — the elected, who was hanged on the neck of a red badge with a ponytail and a gold inscription PRESS).
First, we were free-fed, allowed access "Internet" and allowed to make phone calls. The latter is especially pleased us and the Japanese, because we all live on.
Second, let the press everywhere — and closed doors there were many. Overfed whales sector (say, MicroProse and Virgin) behaved … uh-uh … the sea will continue to comparison … on the principle of the iceberg: they showed the audience a beautiful neon sign, and figs with butter, and a cozy get-together for armor-piercing backs "Female Public Relations" twisted straight from the tin "demos"Handed out a curious CD, drinking, eating, and established the best communication, I shook the handle and generally enjoying themselves as they could. Sheesh, we would get there without red-tails! And so we visited, and will tell you everything.
The entire ground floor of the Congress Centre lopped off large firms with big pockets, bad taste and immoderate penchant for advertising. Rattle "Microsoft": On a giant screen framed by false stones, flashing and steamed representatives in branded yellow jersey stomped and yelled dinosaurs Trespasser’a, howling helicopters soared from Microsoft Flight Simulator, repeatedly grappled with flying monkeys and fell into a kind of seething Hallmarks of the poor fellow liquid Neverhood’a … It was still a dozen smaller screens, referred to representatives who tried to demonstrate in this bedlam joy of 3D DreamWorks Interactive — and they had to shout themselves better than the dinosaurs, slowly wheeled under their fingers on the screen, showing its three-dimensional charms. As the load on the ears it all resembled a tour of a textile factory on the date of the plan — which was only fun and interesting.
In the end, admiring the play of light in the folds of skin greenish another Iguanodon, we managed to grab a demonstrator for the yellow sleeve and vigorously express my admiration for our favorite "Neverhudom". He straightened (as expressed admiration we had in his ear — on the big screen horned dinozavrische just engaged zagryzaniem dinosaur smaller, which is a pity screamed and struggled), looked at our badges with tails, and sent us to get acquainted with the developer Neverhood Ed Schofield — he, as just came to show the second part "Stigmatize"Over which his team is now working. Can you imagine how great was our joy when we rushed to the next small screen, which froze in his trademark pose unscrewed-braked stigma! Here and Now imagine our disappointment when it turned out that from now on favorite character will live on filthy Sony PlayStation, stupidly walk across the screen, jump like a rubber, collecting power-ups and flashing in a collision with the enemy! And for him to be dull float away into nowhere vague greenish background — the usual habitat of platformers, arcade monsters!
We both screamed and indignant, drowning out the dinosaurs with the representatives and Mr. Schofield shook so our beautiful magazine with an article about "Neverhud" Rating and mad that we gave the game that he imbued us respect and eventually began to apologize, something to babble that they de "I wanted to try a brand new", what "then they still show", etc. He clearly recognized our right to wild cries at the sight of how refined aesthetics "Neverhuda" dismantled into pieces and the pieces are stuck at a blank screen infinite scrolling arcade.
In the end, we took pictures of the whole team in the background marked and released to the world (ie, retired back home).
Noise, thunder and muddle compete with "By Microsoft" could perhaps only Eidos, has immortalized his strange name Tomb Raider’om: frightening dimensions grinning figure Larisa (Ivanovna) Croft with a gun could be seen from almost any point of the exhibition hall (because she was not alone) — Lara jumped and twirled on a giant screen, Lara wandered around among the audience, acting on the memory in an embrace with hope … Alas, the proud winner of blondes and hunter wolf completely pulled against the kind of raunchy half-naked girl, sits on a motorcycle in the middle of the stand — it was very Rouge Ryan toy of the same name from the Black Dragon, is almost ready to leave (it — Gillian Bonner, star "Playboy" (Miss April’96), and in combination — the creator and manager of the company Black Dragon and founder of a new genre of toy Sensual Action Adventure — anyway, she says).
Dazzling rocker managed to overshadow not only Lara and a couple of dozen long-legged girls wandering around handing out gum — it eclipsed even his shiny motorcycle, but it is not huhry-muhry not pound of raisins, a motorcycle was simply amazing! Despite this, all decorated with multi-colored loafers Budge, timidly sadivshiesya behind Ryan for Gillian "snimochka memory"Obviously did it for her, not for her iron horse. Virgo sent a dazzling smile at the camera "polaroid" (he was in the hands of the other half-dressed beauty), the customer reluctant to take off his hands from her waist, climbed down from the motorcycle and removed, hungrily eyeing the coveted picture.
I must admit, too, he did — perched on the seat behind fell from the virtual reality whore and said, "Polaroid" "Che-e-eese!". I somehow attracted just a motorcycle. What it was beautiful!
In the ranks of the public my thoughtless act has caused an unhealthy excitement, but missed Ryan also did not want to let me go — did not allow to get off the bike, and then a long time after waving his arms, showing his thumb. It’s a pity, lousy shot went: first, dark, and secondly, do not pull me or against virgins, nor against the motorcycle.
As for the coveted corner of the girls and chewing gum — the same with impenetrable "piarshami"- That everything was as usual. They do not like us, Russian. Rather, love, but a strange love … Do not they believe in us, I think we bast soup slurp. The exhibition was for us (in the sense — for Game.EXE) first, and we had to do everything from scratch — breaching, cutting through the window to melt ice and raise the reputation, and so on, ad infinitum, for three days.
Iron diva (or impudent playboys) behind the counter always tried to stop us, as we have attempted to penetrate beyond the limited gum (to the public) and press releases (journalists).
The idea that the representatives of the Russian magazine willing to communicate with their superiors, aroused divas / playboys whole gamut of strange emotions, from surprise to outright stupid giggles. Apparently, they believe that we still believe only in the fingers, but the game only rounders (incidentally, one of the respectable gentleman respected MicroProse asked us — at the exhibition in the EZ where only professionals hang out: "Excuse me, do you have a CD-ROM drive?").
Whenever it appeared that the right manager terribly busy right now, and in general … And every time I repeated the same scene we dragged issue (preferably — article about a toy that the company, which was doing to us now goat snout), the owl under the nose of his PR-bouncer and started flipping quickly, demonstrating the quality of printing, design, thickness and English summary on the last page.
You’ll laugh, but it always acted! It turns out, not so much on the toy market of thick, beautiful and intelligent magazines like ours (thanks to us, the favorite!).
Instead of malice in the eyes "piarshi" there is a slight sheen instead of sour smiles — business dryness, she quickly ran away somewhere, knocking heels — and came back with the right manager who "just released". Then we ruchkalis, gave the magazine received additional materials (which are not included in the press release), exchanged cards (to contact in the future "Online" personally, not through electronic girls behind the counter — they are a .EXE will not show! ) — And ran to the next stand to hear: "Sorry, our PR / European Sales / Communications Manager is very busy right now!" After that, everything went according to routine routine: we have removed "universal pass" .EXE, In the eyes of bouncers appeared unhealthy shine … (See above.).
Gradually, we have deduced that even non-regularity. For example, sunbathing at the next desk waiting for the manager (the company was very large, like LucasArts, so that the time and effort it took us a lot — the lady is carefully studied the entire magazine, focusing on ratings, laboriously read the resume, look who advertises, and only after it jumped over the first manager — although, for a very solid), Olga suddenly said grimly:
— Now it will thick aunt!
— Why?! — I was surprised.
— Aunts are always trying to bring aunts and are full of people, so find. — Why is fat? — You look at her! — Olga said, nodding at the rapidly receding extensive butt.
I chuckled and turned away — to be honest, was quite sure that we will lead the next smiling gentleman in an expensive suit.
Imagine my surprise when, looking back, I beheld before him promised "thick aunt"Which pulled out and cute smile! Live and learn.
So much fun processing — to prove that we, too, not from the stone age. Hardest of all was given to us, of course, the favorite, but it was stunned by his eternal ambitions and recent misadventures Sierra On-Line. Rather, it is no longer Sierra — now the monster swallowed "Sierra"And along with it the company
Blizzard Entertainment, Davidson and Knowledge Adventure, called CUC Software, and he lived in a separate little house … Georgia Dome, a ten-minute walk from the main building.
Foolishly, we really went there on foot — decided that 40 degrees in Atlanta is not too different from 30 degrees in Moscow. I can say that for the time in the hot haze konfederatskogopoludnya dawned treasured inscription "WELCOME TO EZ!"I was already pretty sure that this is a mirage. Back we went to the limousine (really!), Which is extravagant "Sierra" rented for the transport of visitors (instead of a small bus, as did others not extravagant).
The happiness that we have at hand had a room "Larry" and the number of the article "Anthologies" Roberta Williams! "Sierra" in itself completely confused and cute girl-manager, we finally caught, really wanted to help, but could not think clearly, to whom we send. In this mess no one is responsible for anything, and in any case, no one wanted to be responsible for Russia.
We desperately listanuli magazine and the girl suddenly broke: "Oh, Larry! Look, it’s pretty!".
She was so touched that he finally made the demonic intellectual effort, ran somewhere and came back with a slender lady with low ice face, aquiline profile and the smell of expensive French perfume, her appearance boded forty seconds. Of course, the lady turned out to be a manager in France: it is closer to Moscow, and she really wants to help us, but certainly it does not deal with Russia …
We again listanuli magazine. "0-o, R-r-rober-r-rta!" — He exclaimed the lady with an indescribable French accent. We raised a fuss about how ridiculous that such a unique magazine can not get through to Roberta, and we can not interview her (as it turned out, the interview she gives very rarely), the lady made a hell of an effort ran somewhere — and in fact did find a nice German named Leo, who "responsible for Russia, together with Germany"And we got along well with him — will be you and us an interview with Robert-one! But the time we were there ugrohali, my God!
But back, as has been said, we went on a white limousine (have you ever rode a white limousine?). Actually, no one believed that it would be a limousine, while at the bus stop in black and white was written: "CUC Limos". And imagine not proshpo a minute later, there was an endless white car with shaded windows — of those who are so fond of showing the video clip.
From limousine driver jumped out — beautiful black woman of middle age in perfect English suit and high-heeled shoes. She walked around the limo door opened — and all tomivshayasya Stop rashristanny brethren, hung Baubles by CUC Software, disbelief reached into his mysterious insides.
At this time, no one believed that the limousine — and inside the limousine. But it was so!
Elegant semi-circular sofa, upholstered in soft gray leather, fringed mahogany bar, which adorned with crystal bottle with square plugs and bottles … splashing liquid in bottles of alcoholic shades — from clear as a tear, to brown, as the … cognac. Down in the ice chest, rested soft drinks, and the choice was very great. They are something, and we will gladly drank the whole GOP-by to the sound of wild rap — young man sitting at the end of the cabin, could not resist and began to poke a finger in the buttons on the panel above his head. After all incomprehensible effects with chorus broke repyatina "limo-limo-limou-u-usin!"And he was able to turn it off just two minutes later. So in the main building we came back, we can say, on a white horse, and with tinted windows and a bar … and again went on the stands to prove that we are not camels, and, see pi, business partners — long enough magazines.
So what we are trying to breach the ice melted, the reputation raised — we will wait and reap the fruits of them, tirelessly! For us, they are expressed in the increased e-mail traffic, and for you — naisvezhayshaya news, interesting interviews and the most beautiful pictures. Wait, sir!
As to the melting of ice, then there is, of course, it was the most productive employment graduations, stockpiled in the version already in January (remember, we summed up the past year and distributed by EXE elephants — Game of the Year, Best Quest, etc .; So, all this Prigozhee economy was in store to EZ). All these figures have appeared terribly greedy for compliments — even high ranking at the end of the review (perfect for him unintelligible) forces broke into a smile of grim chief, and then a diploma, beautiful, under glass in a frame, the work of Hamlet Margaryan, and even for the Best Game! His happiness on this occasion they usually verbalize "Terrific !!!" (namely — three exclamation marks) — and quickly took a beautiful pose, smiling all of its 32 perfect teeth (or how much they have been there), so we took pictures of them.
Long and hard was our way through the endless expanses of the EZ-diplomas behind his back! ..
It turned out to be the recipient of the prettiest Christopher Weaver, president of Bethesda Soflworks (Best RPG’97 — Daggerfall). First, he was very happy, and put it not in a slow grin, like everyone else, and a lot of fun and sincere, and then told me that his wife worked with a humanitarian mission in Russia, more precisely, in Kazakhstan — it is the doctor that he knows a few words in Russian, because he was a Russian grandmother, but he did little listened and now regret, with interest asked us about the magazine, a Russian, and very much like himself to show us Daggerfall 2, which is now just is in work. Unfortunately, he was called, as he had an appointment with someone else, and he ran away, strictly punishing developers pokazatnam toy properly. He also promised to give an interview Game.EXE: think Sasha Vershinin there to him a lot of questions, and Christopher will be able to answer them as he talked to us — is alive and interested.
The hardest thing we went with her diploma to Virgin (Best adventure game Broken Sword). This psevdodevstvennaya firmochki generally behaved very interesting: stretched in all this splendor, and in the midst of the din of the main exhibition hall tent camp immense size, hung over the entrance to his trademark sign — white on red, and … did not let anyone go. Even our red badges, which in this exhibition is that of door openings, played roughly the same role played in recent years in our country, the red book with the cherished three letters, we absolutely did not help. Just view our stunning diploma failed to act on the iron lady at the entrance, and one of them, as expected, has left in search of the responsible person. Face it (such a nice lady — that’s it in the photo above), our badges stuck on the shaped as letters V (!!!), let inside, where we handed her a diploma and thoroughly played in"DeMouy" Broken Sword 2. To our surprise, most of the mysterious tent occupied … Virgin stands with food and drink (not only refreshing, but, sorry, goryachitepnymi) — Selected marked cherished Victorian bukovkoy obviously spend time here to good use. Perhaps it’s a little explain the persistence with which the Virgin not to let anyone in your gut: all freebies will not save enough!
With the others it was also interesting: Responsible ladies of Mindscape, Karen, Michael and Karen Conroe (Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing and Senior Marketing Manager), raised a wild shriek as the two schoolgirls began to tear diploma (Best wargame called Warhammer) each other’s hands, and so and took with him two of us — can see. Then they put it in a prominent place and began to enjoy. This was all the more strange that the company Mindscape has shown itself to show the terrible surly: never appeared on the stand in the main hall, and locked in a room on the second floor, hanging sign on the door a few paradoxical content: "By appoitments only. All Press welcome". In short, we have gone from there, a little Ninny.
Alas, the only bad luck befell us with a game of the year (guess what I mean?). When we were on the stand GT Interactive with the most beautiful diploma — for European publication Quake, in the ranks of representatives became apparent slight confusion, then are crystallized senior communications manager Dan Harnett — apparently, he decided to take the brunt. Mr. Harnett sadly stretched with a degree in hand, looked up and forward, and suddenly his already stretched a smile finally twisted. It was so strange that I could not stand it and looked around. A little further away, on the stand Activision, brazenly hovered huge Quake, picking at his gray verge of all wild neon colors, flashing and shimmers in the adjacent stands. The spectacle was over the holiday (judged objectively) and depressing (for the poor figures from the GT, prokveykavshih its schastitse). One can only rejoice sadism with which Activision hung his ur-rushku so that it could be seen from any point of a huge stand GT Interactive.
The impression of this scene remains quite heavy, and slightly improved our mood just a meeting with Steve Grand, developer Sgea_-tures and dad norn (we Publico Wali interview with him and a great article about the game — in the room, which he embraces the photograph — cm. the end of the page).
We found Steve at the booth of the same Mindscape, and he was extremely nice man (as most developers, however. It is the managers of problems with moral character. But the developers always go shaggy and with an absent look — like Steve, and managers are always dressed with needles and glass smile regardless of the circumstances).
Steve immediately asked strictly, where Oleg with Peter, and why they could not come — he obviously wanted to take a look at his interviewers personally. What he had to look at us!
But we finally gave Steve magazine that he madly loved, and he immediately gathered a crowd of colleagues and began proudly poking their nose an article about Creatures, particularly emphasizing the ratings demanded that we moved him to the title and the epigraph, and generally had fun heart.
Then he began to talk about the three-dimensional norns, which now operates.
— This — a new step in their evolution!
— Seriously he said.
— In other words, they were monkeys and become Neanderthals? — We asked.
— No, — he said Steve thought.
— Rather, they were insects and mice became …
Apparently, the norn have a long time to develop, to become full citizens! So much the better — wait for the sequel! (By the way, Mindscape has bought the rights to publish Creatures in America — as the saying goes, awake; moreover, continued in fact not far off.)
In parting, we gave Steve a T-shirt of our publication, and it is terrible to kill, he could not respond in kind. He had lost all Baubles, and he had nothing to give us. Moreover, he managed to squander all your cards — an exceptional case in the exhibition. However, it did not matter: he promised to keep us informed of developments and be sure to give another interview, when will it tell you about the three-dimensional norns.
The same was the pretty Sarah Bean Cliff of Criterion Studios (though it — Marketing Manager). Sarah too terribly happy, received the magazine, immediately remembered Game.EXE — who we are and what we eat, promised to cooperate fully, and kept his word: have sent us e a note, thanking for the magazine and offered to ask her any questions. It’s nice when there is a feedback! The guys from Neverhood also had such great, and they branded pens to blunt the arcade, we would have made much more pleasant and lively conversation!
Or maybe I’m wrong and change my mind, when the game will be more or less ready, and we’ll send the materials. Life — is a complicated thing. Who likes watermelon and who — pork hryaschik whom — Ryan Rouge, and to whom — a motorcycle, and also to find out who is right!
Especially if someone is not right, it’s me: look at everything from their dull labor of fasting and only spoil the mood throughout, describing everyday work! What about the fact that it was our first show and we, like Count Pyotr Andreyevich Kleinmichel, laid railroad instead roll on the adjusted tracks like normal people? And why is it, I said that the public limited chewing gum ?! What does gum, T-shirts, bags and pens (which we, by the way, too, almost did not get)?
The public was allowed to play! Fans simulators happily plunk down in the real aircraft seats and seizes the real steering wheels — and they regularly shook the chair according to the irregularities of the road or airplane banked turns, RPGeshni-ki able to practice in the creation of alchemical solutions under-STAVOChNIK firing from all weapons … And sports simupyato-ry not lazy: one of the booths decorated piece of this basketball court, a basket and markings.
In this patch to get lost among the virtual orgy of reality hung limply some sports peasants — threw the ball in the basket regularly promahivayas. From time to time one of them ran up furtively under the ring and threw the ball into the net, and the rest responded to his feat scattered buzz.
Black waiter rolled past the three-story pokatushki with a bite to eat at some cool stand (not otherwise, Virgin), suddenly slowed down, thought for a moment, and then, having decided, threw his cart, took the ball from the peasants, clearly stood on the edge of the site .. ., and began methodically to put the ball in the basket — over and over again, and he did not even have a place to go — the ball miraculously returned almost every time his hands!
He never once missed and did not utter a single word. Distribute, frustrated Jordan as silently handed the ball nearest the viewer, and drove his cart on — Players feed the audience, too, have lost enthusiasm and wandered around the neighborhood — to eat.
We looked after the cart grim sympathy. An awkward attempt to snatch a piece of the working man free fun found in our souls and immediate responsiveness.
Still, there was a cheerfully noisy, loud, incoherent, sometimes beautiful, sometimes — interesting places — funny … EZ. Celebration!