E3 Expo has always been a very retail-oriented trade show, and while that certainly holds true, there are some purely digital games firms, like Zynga and Gree, who will be attempting to leverage E3 to bolster business this year. Rob Dyer, vice president of partner publishing at Zynga, believes that E3 is starting to cater more to the social companies.
"E3 is in a bit of transition," he told Gamasutra. "It's no longer just about consoles. It's about games and having an opportunity to talk to the people making those games, whether on the web or mobile. It is where we need to be, so we will have a presence."
Dyer, a former Sony Computer Entertainment America executive, continued, "The thing that struck me last year and influenced my decision to leave Sony was the Tokyo Game Show. In the past, it was a very big deal about what was coming out on consoles. Last year, there were maybe three or four games outside of Sony's booth that were console games. Everything else was social or mobile -- and that was the canary in the coalmine for me. … I believe that over time, you're going to see the same thing occur at E3. You're going to see more free to play games on the show floor."
Interestingly, you might wonder why companies like Zynga would even want to come to a hardcore-focused games event like E3... but that's precisely it: Zynga wants to start attracting core gamers.
"The reason we're there is to find games we can use to court the core gamer. We really want those kinds of games on the Zynga platform. You go hunting where the ducks are," Dyer said.
Time will tell if E3 will prove to be fertile ground for companies like Zynga.