I smell bullshot!

Every year we all fall for it, some marketing spiel or cinematic trailer that sounds too good to be true. You would think the history of Watch Dogs, Aliens: Colonial Marines or No Man’s Sky would prepare us better, but sadly we like to see the best in our hobby, and professional marketeers love to use the flavour of language and After Effects to sell us their sh*t - E3 2017 is no different.

Microsoft Xbox E3 2017 - launch exclusive

Whether its Microsoft with their “launch title exclusive” wording (which we’re still trying to consult the dictionary definition on) or two cinematic trailers on the main stage dressed up as gameplay, aiming - and succeeding in their goal - to fool those of us watching. Of course I’m talking about Metro: Exodus from 4A Games and BioWare’s Anthem; two games that looked absolutely breathtaking, and unless you're a gamer with a discerning eye - or one used to dealing with these tactics - you’ll wholeheartedly believe that this is how the game is looking and playing right now - alas, the devil is in the details.

4A Games - Metro: Exodus

And truly this is the job of all gaming media, to push back against such tactics, to better inform the gaming public we serve and fulfill our role as consumer advocates. When companies have actual gameplay trailers they denote it as such - or better yet play it on stage - simply because there’s no reason to word it or otherwise obfuscate the truth when you have the real thing. Only those looking to grease their way through those cracks, dressing up a cinematic as gameplay become meticulous of their wording - such as in-engine - or through the use of video tricks, giving those showcasing such product an escape route when pressed about it.

EA and BioWare - Anthem

And companies will continue to do as such, plainly because it works. The job of any reveal is to garner interest in their product, and after the reveal of both those trailers social media lit up with thousands of gamers praising the stellar looking titles - that I’m sure will eventually end up looking and playing great. But if something looks too good to be true, it always is.

As gamers within a bubble of hype it's easy to get lost, but we need to be discerning, realising that millions has been spent carefully crafting a visual presentation to part you with that hard earned cash. As the old adage goes, fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.

Have you been fooled by bullshots before? let us know in the comments below.


The E3 2017 show floor opens from Tuesday 13th June until Friday 16th. The conferences begin the weekend prior with EA kicking things off.

E3 - otherwise known as the Electronic Gaming Expo - is an annual trade-fair revealing all the latest titles releasing in the near future, within the video game industry. These days the event's conferences are broadcasted online for the masses to watch.

The first true E3 event began in 1995, which was when Sony first revealed their Sony PlayStation console - the E3 event garnered 50,000 attendees from within the industry paving it's future.

Opinion by: David Robinson
Twitter: @5ypher

Posted on 13th June 2017