The Entertainment Software Association says that the number of exhibitors who have purchased space at E3 is over 150 companies, and the big three are all teasing the announcements they plan to make at the event.
"We are incredibly pleased with the quickly growing list of exhibitors and overwhelming support for the E3 Expo," says ESA CEO Michael Gallagher. The event is slated for June 2-4 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
"We anticipate a packed house and a full line-up of industry-driving news and unveilings that will continue to propel the computer entertainment industry's growth through the year and particularly in the holiday season," says Gallagher.
Microsoft's media briefing will kick off the event on June 1, and Don Mattrick, senior VP of the company's Interactive Entertainment Business, says to expect big things.
"Microsoft is gearing up for a big presence at E3 which will completely transform how people think about home entertainment," says Mattrick. "We're excited about the momentum that is building in the industry in anticipation of our June 1st media briefing, which will kick off E3 in blockbuster style."
As for Nintendo, the company promises its "full support" for this year's event. Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime comments, "E3 brings a wide variety of key audiences into contact with products from many companies, including Nintendo. It's the place where creativity is on display, and as a 'sneak peak' for our entire industry it helps generate excitement for gamers around the world."
Sony says it's also looking forward to the event: "The audience of North American-based and foreign media and key industry partners makes E3 Expo an ideal place for us to unveil the latest PlayStation news and products at our press event on June 2," says SCEA president and CEO Jack Tretton.
The ESA and its E3 event appear to be gaining renewed support from game publishers this year after last year's event drew criticism
for its timing and scaled-down format -- and was bookended by departures from publishers including Activision, NCsoft, id Software and more amid questions about the association's membership dues
In recent months, a new dues structure
and the promise of a revamped E3 event
have apparently brought many publishers back to the ESA's fold, including many smaller and mid-tier companies like Natsume, Koei, XSeed and Crave Entertainment -- the last of which was among the departing last year.