Cyril's E3 Adventure Day 3


posted 6/17/2003 by Cyril Lachel
other articles by Cyril Lachel
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Where day one is the excitement of finding all the new games you want to play and day three is the madness of playing everything you forgot in the other days, day two is relatively simple. It’s a day when you can sit back and wait in lines, enter contests and wait around for the prize, and look for weird and wacky things to happen at E3.

But before you start the second day, you should have a good head start with a nutritious breakfast. Good food can go a long way when you are navigating your way through the crowds of E3. And with any luck, it will tide your appetite until the show ends. After you’ve gathered your goods, it’s time to spread our wings and weather another day of game playing, celebrity hunting, and trinket collecting.

Now that you aren’t in the rush you were on the first day, you have a chance to look at the people that make up this glorious event. You can finally mosey around and find life as normal happening to thousands of people. It’s not like a concert, where everybody is transfixed on one specific thing, instead it’s almost like a microcosm of all kinds of life in one area.

You usually start to notice this when you are sitting in line. As life passes you by, you can see hundreds of events occur, just like if it were a busy street corner in a bustling city. As one looks around, it’s not hard to get lost in the whole carnival atmosphere that is E3. It’s a world all to itself, something that nobody with extreme attention span problems should even attempt. Thousands of noises, images, people, and flashing lights all around, it may not be a concert, but it sure looks like one.

Every so often E3 will surprise even the most cynical among us, there’s a magic that this show has unlike any other. All this leads us to our first rule of the second day of E3 …

Rule Six – Be Prepared For the Worst

I was reminded a lot of my friend who sat next to me on the flight to Los Angeles. He made a comment that I thought at the time would lead me on a path to a more sanctimonious life. He said, and I quote: “You won’t find a police officer in this country that wants games like Grand Theft Auto and Vice City to be on the market.”

At the time I found this hard to believe, since I’m sure there are more than a few police officers who actually enjoy playing video games, and aren’t simply led by the media to believe the game is a lot of cop killing. I figured there had to be at least one cop in this world that wouldn’t mind seeing a few of his FICTIONAL brothers go down in a hail of bullets from your gun.

But I never imagined a photo opportunity would just fall into my lap. Just when I thought day two was starting to wind down, I went back for another helping of their Vice City postcard books at the Rockstar Booth, and what did I see?

That’s right, a Los Angeles Police Officer playing Vice City. And not just playing it, but actually giving it a good test spin. On a bike, and eventually by foot, this cop, one of L.A.’s finest, took down a whole army of police officers. One after another, all while using a half dozen different weapons to inflict his wrath.

Before too long the helicopters were overhead, he was out of ammo, and there were just too many men with badges after him. Tommy Vercetti was busted! And as the police officer looked around to see the crowd that had gathered to see his rampage, he quietly muttered: “Well, I guess I got what I deserved.”

Even though I do not believe video game violence influences real life violence, I wasn’t going to take any chances, and made sure to get the postcard book I was after, and made the pilgrimage to the West Hall where it was safe.

I lost touch with the man I met on the flight, but if he’s reading this, he should know one thing: there is at least one police officer in this country willing to play Vice City … even if it was in a horribly vicious form. In a day filled with standing in lines, Turtle power, and booths with nobody around, this simple act by the police officer was the moment of the show for me.

That act wouldn’t go unchallenged, though. Towards the end of the second day I found myself wandering by one of the three G4 TV areas. Since they were located outside of the west hall, I had passed them enough to see that one of the handouts was a fake-tattoo. This seemed reasonable, since last year a I had come across dozens of booths that were doing the exact same thing.

But as I passed the G4 booth on that Thursday a strange sight caught my eye. I noticed that there was a young man who had opted for a REAL tattoo, instead of a fake one. Now obviously tattoos are common place, and seeing a person getting a tattoo isn’t outright unique. But I found it a tad sobering to see a real life tattoo of G4’s logo being inked onto that gentleman’s arm, like a walking, talking billboard.
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