Feature: Our Favourite E3 Memories - Part One

Back in the old days

We're getting closer to E3 2012, with this year's Nintendo press conference arguably one of the most anticipated in recent times as we'll learn more about Wii U and what it can do. We shouldn't forget 3DS, of course, as we'll hope for release dates for anticipated titles and perhaps learn of some new surprises as well. Naturally, we at Nintendo Life are thinking about E3 a lot right now, so it seems like a good time to reminisce on some of our favourite E3 memories to date.

This week James, Christopher and Joe look back to 2004 and 2005, when Reggie was fresh-faced and DS was about to rock the world of portable gaming. Next week Thomas, Corbie and Mike will be moving on to the Wii and 3DS eras of E3 memories, but for now let's go back to a time when Reggie was kicking ass and taking names, and Iwata was the 'daddy'.

James Newton

E3 2005 was one of my favourite E3s. I'd just moved into a new place and didn't have internet access, so my brother burnt the conference video onto CD and I watched it a few weeks after the show.

It's a weird show by today's standards. Iwata comes out and says he kicked Reggie's "you-know-what" at Smash Bros. then asks him "who's your daddy?" There's a segment where David Hollands DJs with Electroplankton for what seems like ages.

The best bits, though, are the hardware reveals. Reggie fumbles a Game Boy Micro out of his inside jacket pocket, but Iwata gets the best line. "You say you want a revolution. Well, we've got one," and pulls a prototype Wii console from behind his back. It's all so low-key compared to recent years but there's something really charming about it.

I didn't get 'net access for months so I just watched that video over and over. It gave me that same feeling I have now – that Nintendo is on the cusp of something genuinely surprising, a real game-changer. I guess we'll see soon!

Christopher Ingram

My absolute favourite year for Nintendo has to be their 2004 E3 presentation. Yes, this was the year that Reggie Fils-Aime made his butt kicking debut. But, as awesome as his opening statement was, it’s what was secretly tucked away in Reggie’s coat pocket that had my heart racing a million miles an hour.

Just as the rocking tunes of Resident Evil 4’s amazing trailer came to an end, Reggie confidently reached into said coat pocket and unveiled Nintendo DS onto the world. He then went on to state that “DS” didn’t only mean ‘dual screens,’ but that to Nintendo, it meant “developer system.” He claimed that DS brought game developers “new tools to work with,” as well as “new ways to express their imaginations.” Then making the statement that sends chills up my spine every time I hear it: “DS not only changes Nintendo, but it changes our industry.” I can only imagine what Reggie would think now if he heard himself make this same statement today? Could even his wildest of imagination know the overwhelming success that rested in the palm of his hand in that moment when he uttered those ten words?

Today, the DS has shifted over 150 million units worldwide and brought touchscreen gaming into the mainstream. Nintendo revolutionized the entire industry with a handheld console. Is that even possible? Here we are now, eight years later, gearing up for the Wii U reveal at E3 2012. If Nintendo can revolutionize the entire industry with a touchscreen handheld console, just imagine what they can do with a similar home console. E3 2012 simply can’t get here fast enough!

Joe Walker

E3 2004 was a monumental show for Nintendo with several standout moments, from the Nintendo DS reveal to Shigeru Miyamoto’s entrance brandishing the Master Sword and Hylian Shield. The moment that stands out the most to me, though, is the introduction of Reggie Fils-Aime, then the Vice President of Sales & Marketing, bellowing his now famous quote: “My name is Reggie. I’m about kickin’ ass, I’m about takin’ names, and we’re about makin’ games.” That quote, coupled with the gritty trailers for Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess set the tone for a more “grown up” Nintendo attitude.

While he’s toned down a bit since his headline-grabbing debut, Reggie still remains an icon for Nintendo, often mentioned in the same breath with Miyamoto and Satoru Iwata. While game announcements are always more exciting than the introduction of a new corporate suit, Reggie ushered in a new age for Nintendo and E3 in a way that people still talk about today.

Come back at the same time next week for Part Two.

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