The VideoGamer E3 Conferences Drinking Rules to Be Enjoyed Responsibly and Legally If You Happen to Drink Alcohol and If You Don't Then We Respect That -
Alice Bell by on Jun 6, 2018

The VideoGamer E3 Conferences Drinking Rules to Be Enjoyed Responsibly and Legally If You Happen to Drink Alcohol and If You Don’t Then We Respect That

The E3 conferences: they're loud, over-the-top performances with strange costumes, explosions and weird music, and a harried looking man wearing a suit and a brittle smile tries to keep everything to time whilst Twitter explodes with opinions about it. To put it another way, the E3 conferences are basically the Eurovision Song Contest of video games. And how is Eurovision bearably consumed? With extremely prescriptive drinking rules, of course!

Based on careful observation of previous conferences and current trends, please enjoy a generous list of drinking rules for each of the major conferences scheduled for E3 this year. We may or may not follow them ourselves, because we're live streaming pre and post shows for everything. But I suppose it would make the post shows very interesting. In any case, I wouldn't actually follow these rules to the letter because you might get alcohol poisoning and we don't want you to do that. 


  • Drink for Phil Spencer wearing blazer with jeans and cool indie game t-shirt
  • Chug drink for Phil Spencer wearing a t-shirt with his own face on
  • Do a shot for audience member yelling something at Phil in a quiet moment as if Phil views them as anything more than numbers feeding the corporate machine and is therefore deserving of their love
  • Do a shot for Phil pointing at aforesaid person and nodding approvingly
  • Drink for Minecraft
  • Drink for anthropomorphised animal platformer
  • Do a shot for Microsoft revealing something only tangentially related to games, e.g. a new car or a TV series
  • Drink for PYROTECHNICS!!!!
  • Do a shot for all lighting cutting and the sudden sound of a chainsaw; crowd pops a ridiculous amount as Gears of War logo flashes on screen for, like, four seconds total.
  • Do a shot for all lighting cutting and the sudden sound of a male voice choir; crowd pops a ridiculous amount as Halo logo flashes on screen for, like, four seconds total.
  • Drink for backwards compatibility
  • Drink for 'power of the X'
  • Drink every time you are confused by some combination of the words 'exclusive', 'timed', 'premiere' and 'launch' e.g. 'console launch exclusive' or 'Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive'. 
  • Drink for every [email protected] game they flash up in quick succession to confuse the eye
  • Finish entire bottle out of shock if Microsoft announces an actual new AAA IP


  • Drink for live music on stage that is beautiful but also kind of goes on a bit too long tbh
  • Drink for visible physical effects in the auditorium e.g. they make it snow inside or whatever
  • Drink for each instance of an unfortunate technical difficulty
  • Drink for Shawn Layden doing thumb pointing to emphasise his speech, like Tony Blair public speaking circa 2001
  • Drink for when, between footage, they cut to show the audience just sittin' there waiting, for some reason.
  • Do a shot for each of the big four: The Last of Us Part II, Spider-Man, Ghost of Tsushima and Death Stranding
  • Do a shot for Kojimaaaaaa
  • Do a bonus shot for each member of the Kojima Death Stranding Best Friend Squad who joins him (Reedus, Mikkelsen, del Toro)
  • Drink for when you're suddenly reminded Days Gone exists in a year that Sony are also going to be pushing The Last of Us Part II
  • Drink for every incident of gameplay or trailer footage that will cause Discourse to happen on Twitter 
  • Drink for popular game getting some kind of remaster or remake but you're not entirely clear on which
  • Drink whenever anyone says something that's clearly a thinly veiled dig, like 'a true exclusive from PlayStation' 
  • Oh shit, drink for when they mention VR, I guess?


  • Drink for Reggie Fils-Aime, the only games businessman who looks like he could flat out beat the shit out of you if you step out of line
  • Do a shot whenever it's implied real humans use the Switch in a way they don't e.g. fellow friends, let us stop playing a real game of basketball in order to play fake basketball on this tiny screen
  • Drink for giggling at the word 'Labo', heh
  • Drink for getting a bit teary because Iwata isn't here to see how successful the Switch is
  • Drink for a lovely game involving something like papercraft or wool or plasticine
  • Drink for spontaneously breaking into the Pokemon theme song
  • Drink for Miyamoto appearing and doing something impossibly adorable
  • Drink for Smaaaaaaaaash Brooooooooos.
  • Drink for Amiibo that you'd never use but you'd sell your soul to own anyway
  • Do a shot for being made to contemplate the horror of whatever evolutionary process gave birth to Yoshi
  • Drink for anyone on social media seriously complaining that Nintendo stuff is too much for kids these days
  • Drink for Nintendo advertising a game with a song that turns out to be one of the absolute bangers of the year


  • Drink for Darling Yves
  • Do a shot for someone, clearly an Ubi employee, yelling 'WE LOVE YOU YVES!' — not because they've been told to, but because Yves has saved them from the evil clutches of Vivendi
  • Drink for implicit reference to Ubisoft being saved from the evil clutches of Vivendi
  • Drink for slightly unexpected sports game
  • Do a shot for the sudden appearance of a strange troupe of dancing clowns that are extremely unsettling
  • Do a shot for the sudden appearance of a real, non-games celebrity
  • Drink for hilariously fake team chat audio that features no swearing or griefing and is just the players congratulating each other on their good teamwork
  • Drink for clearly extremely clever developer being forced to do a presentation on their game in their second language
  • Do a shot for thinking a game is Assassin's Creed when the trailer first starts and then realising it's Skull and Bones (or vice versa)
  • Drink for actual Assassin's Creed
  • Drink for Ubisoft making fun of itself because it's really warming up to that these days
  • Do a shot for what is shown of Beyond Good and Evil 2 being actual gameplay of real substance
  • Pour one out for Aisha Tyler
  • Pour one out for Mr. Caffeine
  • Drink for Splinter Cell and the all knowing Walmart leak


  • Drink for Andrew Wilson's outfit being a bit matchy-matchy
  • Drink for the dawning suspicion that Andrew Wilson is actually a sentient Ken Doll
  • Drink for the audience being noticeably less into it than the other conferences 'cos if we're honest EA hasn't had the best year in terms of public goodwill
  • Drink for players sitting behind a to-camera piece and not knowing where they should look or how to behave
  • Do a shot for a confused footballer and/or football manager being on stage
  • Do a shot for the Star Wars thing being directly addressed
  • Drink for anyone subsequently kind of dancing around the whole Star Wars thing or trying to nervously joke about it
  • Drink for anyone saying they're listening to player feedback
  • Drink for every instance of the word 'community' or the phrase 'player-first'
  • Drink for conspicuous absences of the word 'microtransactions'
  • Do a shot if Josef Fares is allowed on stage ever again post-TGAs
  • Drink for Anthem, oh god please buy Anthem, BioWare needs this
  • Do a shot for a big charity splash at the end that the crowd is un-hype about and has to kind of be cajoled into clapping for
  • Chug everything in the vicinity if people actually genuinely start booing at any point
  • Drink for Forza Horizons 5 and the all knowing Walmart leak


  • Drink for everyone bloody loving Pete Hines
  • Drink for every occurence of Vault Boy
  • Do a shot for Rage 2 and the all knowing Walmart leak ('cos it's probably going to be up front and then there'll be a lot of waiting around until Fallout so we might as well get some jollies in now)
  • Chug your drink for any instance of Skyrim 
  • Drink for Elder Scrolls: Online is also a thing
  • Drink for Quake Champions is also a thing
  • Drink for an old game, but in VR now
  • Drink for an old game, but with a mobile tie-in now
  • Drink for an old game, but on Switch now
  • Drink with relief for inevitable appearance of Todd Howard, because it means something big is about to happen
  • Do a commiserations shot if you are disappointed by the full reveal of Fallout 76
  • Do a celebrations shot if you are not disappointed by the full reveal of Fallout 76
  • Do a shot if oh my god it's Starfield! Starfield is here! It's real!
  • Do a shot for Arkane rocking up and doing something fucking cool that you weren't prepared for
  • Drink a bottle of good red wine and smoke, exhausted but with a grudging respect, if the conference is actually a 24 live stream with no incident until Todd shows up, and we all  watch it any way because we must, because we have no choice, because this is life now

Square Enix

  • Drink for it being pronounced Square 'EN-icks' rather than 'EE-nicks' and realising you say it wrong but you won't stop saying it wrong
  • Drink for Squeenix going massively overboard and strange in effort to play keep up with the other companies because they haven't done this for a while
  • Do a shot for Yoko Taro coming on in his weird moon mask because the man is a treasure and Squeenix is very aware of this fact
  • Drink for Tomb Raider footage being borderline snuff
  • Drink (an alcopop) for Life is Strange 2 getting a reveal trailer, 'cos it's long overdue at this point
  • Do a shot for Kingdom Hearts being announced to feature some hilariously incongruous Disney characters like, I dunno, Phineas and Ferb
  • Drink for Final Fantasy hair or swords
  • Do a shot for Final Fantasy VII
  • Do a second shot if it's there in any actually meaningful capacity e.g. gameplay
  • Do a shot for that cool Avengers thing they've been teasing for ages
  • Finish the entire bottle if they don't, in fact, have the two biggest things everyone is expecting them to have, and just check yourself in for a stomach pump at the hospital, for Christ's sake
  • Drink for Just Cause 4 and the all knowing Walmart leak


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on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Release Date:

31 December 2018