Gamescom catching up with E3 in terms of PR impact

ICO Partners research sees PS4 getting most press attention from show

Research around the press coverage of Gamescom has revealed that, whilst the event still doesn't have quite the impact of E3, it's still an effective place to attract coverage, especially from German media, says PR and online analytics company ICO Partners.

Monitoring the output of both specialist and mainstream online media after the Cologne show, ICO Partners found that the PS4 harvested the most column inches: a total of 10,929 articles. That's almost a clear 3,000 articles ahead of its closest rival in the Xbox One with 8,043. Nintendo's lack of press conference hurt its exposure, the report says, with only 1,563 articles appearing about the Wii and Wii U combined, less than half that for the Xbox 360 and only around a third of the total for PS3.

Still, E3's shadow looms large. The PS4 was featured in over 16,000 pieces after the LA show, the Xbox One in 11,433. Nintendo's platform fared considerably better, even in comparison to others, after E3, with the Wii U the third most talked about platform, featured in 6,271 columns.


The power of the press conferences was evident again in the date range of the show's online presence. Tuesday, when both Sony and Microsoft had their conferences, generated 4,195 articles compared to 3,435 the day after and 2,580 on Thursday the 14th. Coverage drops off consistently as the week goes on.


In terms of regional reach, German language articles were unsurprisingly the most common, with over 4,700 pieces written. Less predictably, French language articles (2064) on Gamescom were slightly more commonplace than those in English (1976), with Spanish and Italian language pieces close behind. Far more German websites covered the show, too, with 326 different outlets writing about it, compared to 188 in English and 193 in French, 131 in Spanish and 91 in Italian.

It's perhaps the analysis of which games communicated most effectively at the show which is most interesting. Largely, most games saw a much bigger pay off from E3 than Gamescom, although for some titles that disparity becomes clearer when you consider that they were announced at E3 and were not playable in Cologne. Nonetheless, the gap is overwhelming for many games. Only two titles saw more PR come out of the German show than E3: FIFA 145 and Call of Duty Advanced Warfare.

Whilst EA's perennial soccer game can probably explain its slightly better coverage with a more receptive audience, CoD: AW saw a huge increase in numbers, marking an increase in exposure of around fifty per cent.


All images courtesy of ICO Partners.

Related stories

PLAY Paris brings PAX to Europe

"Powered by PAX" fan expo on April 21-22 to include video games, tabletop gaming, esports, concerts

By Brendan Sinclair

Unreal developers can get their EGX Rezzed exhibition space doubled

Titles in the 'Powered by Unreal Engine' zone will be eligible to have their exhibition space doubled, courtesy of Epic

By GamesIndustry Staff

Latest comments (12)

Pete Thompson Editor 3 years ago
As a European I have slightly more interest in Gamescom than E3, and I just wish we had something as big as E3, Gamescom or TGS here in the UK.

As for the PS4 having more articles, than the Xbox One, there seems to be a lot of gaming Journo's and gaming sites who see Sony as the victors of next-gen, while Microsoft are still seen as the bad guys because of E3 2013. Would be nice if Sony manned up and went first with a press conference for change..

Surely there were a lot more articles written about Rise of the Tomb Raider during Gamescom when it was announced as Xbox One timed exclusive than at E3. Every gaming news site, mainstream newspaper, tech site and blog had an opinion or article on whether it was a timed or life exclusive, and whether it was bad for the gaming industry or not.. There must have been more than the 800 -900 as illustrated in ICO's infographic which has it as a tie with E3..

I'd be interested in how they gather data and what search terms they use. If you google GamesCom 2014 Rise of the Tomb Raider you're returned over 1.2million results,
Quantum Break, that returns over 655k
The order 1886 955k
The Division 1.4m
and Sunset Overdrive 1.8m
and both GamesCom 2014 PS conference and Gamescom 2014 Xbox conference return 1.9m results each..

Edited 3 times. Last edit by Pete Thompson on 2nd September 2014 6:14pm

0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Thomas Bidaux CEO, ICO Partners3 years ago
Having a tie is already an impressive feat. It is easy to have the perception of a large volume when we ourselves track 20-30 sites and they happen to all talk about it (and feature it more or less prominently on their page, which is something we cannot track at the moment).

We also have a system in the work where we weigh the articles based on the site's Alexa ranking - and RotTR has 1826 "score" for E3's announcement against a 2248 "score" for gamescom... So more important websites covered the exclusive announcement, that can clearly explain your perception of it being "bigger".
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Pete Thompson Editor 3 years ago
Hi Thomas, Just curious as to how things are tracked / worked out.. Interesting to see that you take Alexa ranking into account, I get told all too often that Alexa rank isn't important anymore. :-)

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Pete Thompson on 2nd September 2014 6:51pm

0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Show all comments (12)
Thomas Bidaux CEO, ICO Partners3 years ago
You can find some details on the tool we are using there:

Alexa is the most convenient tool out there. It is not perfect but it does the job for us. And more importantly, it does the job in a reliable way...
We initially wanted to use Alexa in conjunction to another metrics solution, and compensate each of their system which other. The one we considered at the time was just not reliable enough across the board compared to Alexa was giving us bad data.

That's one of the thing we want to use the media tracker for as well - refine that scoring system.
1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
next stop Gamescom 2015 to be more popular than E3 :)
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Thomas Bidaux CEO, ICO Partners3 years ago
That would require E3 getting weaker more than gamescom stronger... Not impossible.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Jakub Mikyska CEO, Grip Digital3 years ago
I think this is another confirmation that Europe is becoming more and more important market for console games, than it was perceived a few years ago, when both software and hardware were released with several months of delay behind Japan and the North America and in general if felt like being a second class citizen when compared to the services in the US :-)
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 3 years ago
one thing sticks out to me as sort of an anomaly. The new Smash Brothers won "Most Wanted Consumer Award", but WiiU coverage was rather low. One could argue this is a small indication of visitors and press being a little bit out of synch on this one. Chance for something the press will later call surprise hit?
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Its simple, I feel Gamescom is becoming more and more multicultural international in a relaxed manner whereas a certain kind of flavour :)
1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.3 years ago
One is public. The other is industry.

There's your difference. Just about everything that separates the two events can be compiled in those two statements.
2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Thomas Bidaux CEO, ICO Partners3 years ago
What Jim said.
It reflects what the media reported on, not what the public found interesting. I wish I had the resources to research the social media "coverage" and compare it to "standard media" coverage and check for discrepancies. That's a lot of work and taking into account the huge echo effect from social media is not simple.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
but...there is a industry element to gamescom as well which works rather nicely
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply

Sign in to contribute

Need an account? Register now.