VHScapades: E3 2004

South Hall

The 10th annual E3 (E3 2004) is remembered for many reasons, but most will likely remember it for two reasons: kicking ass and making games. The debut of Reggie Fils-Aime as Nintendo's front man will live forever in the annals of gaming history. And the reaction to that Twilight Princess trailer that he introduced...crazy. Nintendo also debuted the DS here, and even though it was a clunky prototype model, its touch screen, built-in WiFi, and tech demos were a hit with show goers. I still can't believe Pac Pix became a retail game.

Keeping with the handheld theme of the show, Sony was going full-on guns blazing with PSP at their booth. They had a slew of potential launch titles like Twisted Metal: World Tour, Wipeout Pure, Metal Gear Ac!d, and some stuff that never even came out. The PS2 was still dominating the console market with the likes of God of War, Gran Turismo 4, and the third editions of Jak and Ratchet.

In 2004, for Microsoft, it was all about Halo 2. Inexplicably, though, it was not playable on the show floor except by appointment. In its stead, their booth was loaded with the likes of Fable, KOTOR 2, Doom 3, and a little racing game called Forza Motorsport.

Overall, E3 2004 was kind of a big deal. And then there was the Infinium Labs' Phantom console. But, let's just get to the videos, because there's a lot of them this time.

Entering West Hall on day two of E3 2004. Forgive me for being an idiot and having the time stamp turned on. Luckily, I realized it after the second video here and turned it off.

Edited by Marino


Again, sorry about the time stamp, but it's gone after this video. This Midway wall was right outside the entrance to the expo hall in West Hall. So, for those of us that arrived super early in order to race to the Nintendo booth to get in line for the DS, we saw/heard this Mortal Kombat: Deception trailer about 200 times. I love Mortal Kombat, but I was so sick of this trailer by the time the doors opened.

Nintendo DS

Nintendo let about 60 people in at a time. First, they corralled everyone into a room with six rows. Mario came on the screen and welcomed everyone, then Charles Martinet came out from behind a curtain and talked to everyone about how excited he was about the Nintendo DS. They played some marketing videos, and then they randomly selected two of the six rows to get private demonstrations of the system. I went through this process twice, but neither time did my row get picked. So, the rest of us were guided to a separate area full of tech demos that we could play around with. The only thing dividing the two areas was a rope, so I was still able to see/tape footage of Metroid. And look how fat that pre-DS fat was!


After getting out of the DS area, I stuck around Nintendo's area playing most of their stuff. Here's over 13 minutes of Paper Mario 2, Star Fox, Resident Evil 4, Metroid Prime 2, Donkey Kong Jungle Beat, Mario Pinball, Kirby & The Amazing Mirror, F-Zero: Maximum Velocity, and The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap.

Sony PSP

This was about 10 months before the PSP came out in North America, so obviously Sony was already full steam ahead on promoting their first handheld system. And, yes, they were showing Gran Turismo back in 2004. That game came out in what...2009? And how about that weird glass keyboard attachment thing? Anyway, here's about 5 minutes of Ape Escape, Syphon Filter, Darkstalkers, Dokodemo Issho, Tony Hawk's Underground 2 Remix, Twisted Metal: World Tour, ATV Offroad Fury, Gran Turismo, Hot Shots Golf, Metal Gear Ac!d, and New Ridge Racer.


PSP may have been the big attraction at Sony's booth, but the PS2 was still killin' it. Here's close to 30 minutes of Jak 3, Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal, Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, Final Fantasy XII, God of War, Killzone, Gran Turismo 4, and the Harmonix classic...EyeToy: Anti-Grav.

EA Games

And here's the 2004 edition of Electronic Arts' giant video wall. Now in full, 360º, panoramic view! But, I was tired. So, I just sat on the floor with a bunch of people. Here's 12+ minutes of some classics and some big, fat stinkers. It's Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth, Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault, Burnout 3, Catwoman, The Sims 2, Battlefield 2, Need for Speed: Underground 2, GoldenEye: Rogue Agent, and Def Jam: Fight for NY.

EA Sports

When you work at a video game store, and you're shooting video primarily to get more pre-orders, you have to get footage of EA Sports games. That's just how it is. So here's Madden NFL 2005, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2005, NBA Live 2005, Fight Night 2004, NCAA Football 2005, NASCAR Chase for the Cup 2005, MVP Baseball 2004, and FIFA Football 2005.

EA Sports BIG

EA apparently didn't have any EA Sports BIG titles to show, so they made this goofy music video. Man...remember EA Sports BIG?

The Legend of Zelda

And now back over to West Hall. I think I was waiting in line for something else and realized when they were showing the Zelda trailer on the big screen. It was like every 30 minutes or something, so I recorded it of course. Who knew we'd end up playing this with a nunchuck?

Vivendi Universal

Proving that, every once in a while, games based on movies can actually be pretty good, here's Riddick from Vivendi's booth. Also, the word Vivendi used to be a thing. Their headliners at E3 were Riddick, Crash Twinsanity, Leisure Suit Larry, and a couple little games called Half-Life 2 and StarCraft Ghost.

Edited by Marino


Capcom was still riding the success of Resident Evil 4, which had just come out in January for GameCube. They had waves of zombie people that would invade the show floor every few hours to promote it some more. They also had Viewtiful Joe 2, Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Crimson Tears, Mega Man X8, Street Fighter Anniversary, and something called Monster Hunter.

Sony Online Entertainment

Unlike the last few years, there was no way to get into the SOE booth without an appointment. No hidden pass cards or black lights involved. I was pretty disappointed to not be able to see how far EverQuest II had come over the last year, and I wanted to see the Champions of Norrath sequel too. But, all I got was this long trailer and some photos.

Infinium Labs' Phantom Console

An E3 legend in its own right, the Phantom console was...get this...a PC that streamed games to your TV via the Internet. People thought it was pretty absurd at the time. Maybe it was just ahead of its time. If Kickstarter was a thing in 2004, I wonder if this thing would've made it. That "lapboard" keyboard was pretty fucking ingenious though.


A friend of mine basically demanded I get some footage of SVC Chaos. So, here we are. SNK also had their regular stable of Metal Slug, KoF, and Samurai Shodown.

Tony Hawk

Man...remember Bam Margera? Well, here's over three minutes of the continued decline of Tony Hawk games. (I still played a lot of this game.)

More PSP

I went back for more PSP action at the Sony booth. You can poke fun all you want at the PSP now, but at the time, it was pretty amazing. Here's more footage of Metal Gear Ac!d, NBA, NHL FaceOff 2005, music videos, movie trailers, Final Fantasy VII Advent Children, Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow, Tony Hawk's Underground 2, Hot Shots Golf, and box arts...lots of box arts.


As I've mentioned before, Tecmo was (is?) notorious for having little to nothing to actually play at their booth. Instead, they would have a big video screen and a bunch of models dressed as DOA and/or Ninja Gaiden characters on a stage for photo ops. I guess it worked for them, because there always a ton of dudes hanging around their booth. And, no...I'm not innocent of doing that. (see below)

Star Wars Republic Commando

Republic Commando was probably my favorite game of the show in 2004, and I'm not even a big Star Wars fan. The squad commands were really simple and yet effective. I'm still kind of surprised they let me film it in the theater they had this demo set up in. There's a trailer for Jump to Lightspeed at the end, if that's something you're interested in.


All hail the greatest football game ever made, ESPN NFL 2K5. I'm still mad about the EA exclusive rights to NFL. Truth be told, the real reason I stopped by the Sega booth, which was in the concourse hall between the two bigger halls, was because they had free Cokes down there. I also got a 1-on-1 developer demo of The Matrix Online while I was there. It was alright I guess. I think @matt said it turned out okay.


As I mentioned before, Halo 2 was nowhere to be seen in the main part of their booth. It was back behind some curtains in an invitation only area. I'm not a huge Halo fan, so it wasn't as much disappointing as it was strange to me. You'd think they would want their top game out there front and center. So, here's a look around their booth including Jade Empire, Conker: Live & Reloaded, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II - The Sith Lords, and Fable. There might also be about 3 seconds of Doom 3 in there before someone told me I wasn't allowed to video that.

Edited by Marino


And you thought Mr. Caffeine was just an anomaly of E3 2011 by Ubisoft? Hell no, son. Ubisoft and Mr. Caffeine have been best buds for YEARS. Here he is giving a live demonstration of the game almost no one loved, Prince of Persia: Warrior Within. Also, there are less caffeinated trailers for Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell 3 and Brothers in Arms.


When people talk about there not being space for any mid-tier games these days, a prime example of that is BloodRayne 2. No one's making these types of games any more. Good riddance? I don't know.


Remember when Call of Duty was a PC game? Call of Duty: United Offensive was an expansion pack for the original game. I'm not sure anyone predicted how big this franchise would become.


"Heihachi Mishima is dead." I'm pretty sure not one single person believed that shit. Tekken 5 was kind of a big deal still. Death by Degrees on the other hand...was not. Although I don't have footage of them, Nacmo was also showing Xenosaga II, Baten Kaitos, and a fairly good, open-world racing game that no one remembers called SRS: Street Racing Syndicate.


It's the game that does not exist. StarCraft Ghost is a myth within the history of video games. I actually had a chance to play it two different years (2004 & 2005), so I can attest to it actually being a game at some point in time. I'm not even a StarCraft fan, but I liked it both times. Here is about 30 seconds to prove it existed, and then a Blizzard rep told me to shut it off. I was allowed to tape the trailer from the giant video wall though. There's also a World of Warcraft trailer at the end, but no one cares about that.

Electronic Arts

I stopped by the EA booth one last time on day 3 and checked out The Lord of the Rings: The Third Age and TimeSplitters: Future Perfect. I'm a pretty big LOTR fan, and I just hate the whole idea of this game. These random dudes helped Gandalf kill a balrog? No thanks. You can never go wrong with TimeSplitters though.

South Hall

Saying goodbye to E3 2004 starting with some panoramic views of the South Hall.

West Hall

And, lastly, here's some rotating views of West Hall featuring Nintendo and Sony before leaving the show on the last day.

I've got one more set of these (2005) that I'll post sometime soon.