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E3 attendance reaches highest point since 2005

2018 event was "an enormous success" says organiser as nearly 70,000 people descend on LA Convention Centre

Attendance at E3 this year was the highest it's been since 2005, with over 69,200 people visiting the Los Angeles Convention Centre -- up by 800 over the year prior -- but falling just shy of the 70,000 lifetime peak.

With millions of people tuning into to watch the week's events online, and 15,000 consumer tickets sold, E3 organiser, the Entertainment Software Association, described the event as "an enormous success".

The show floor also featured more than 200 exhibitors -- including 85 companies that were exhibiting for the first time -- showcasing a total 3,250 products.

"E3 2018 reinforced the cultural prominence of video games for a global audience," Michael Gallagher, president and CEO of ESA in a statement.

"Congratulations to our innovative exhibitors, members, and partners and to the millions of gamers who celebrated a spectacular E3 with us."

However, GamesIndustry.biz North American editor Brendan Sinclair, who spent all week at the show, said it was "perhaps the worst crowd situation" he's seen in 15 years of covering E3.

The transmedia appeal of the show was also on display this year with the appearance of special guests from both games and the wider entertainment industry including Amy Henning, Hideo Kojimi, Jack Black, Elijah Wood, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Westworld series creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy.

E3 exhibitor and ESA member Epic Games added: "We had an amazing time celebrating Fortnite with our players and partners this year at E3. Bringing players together is an important part of what we do with Fortnite, and E3 is one of the best venues to connect face-to-face with fans, friends, and the industry."

On the final day, Brigham University took top honors as winner of the E3 College Game Competition; they were joined exhibiting on the show floor by UQAT, the winner of ESA Canada's E3 College Game Competition, and Lienzo, winner of ESA's Mexican game competition, Videojuegos MX.

The ESA announced that E3 2019 is scheduled to take place June 11 - 13.

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Ivy Taylor

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Ivy joined GamesIndustry.biz in 2017 having previously worked as a regional journalist, and a political campaigns manager before that. They are also one of the UK's foremost Sonic the Hedgehog apologists.