I've seen lots of theater presentations at E3 through the years, large screens on the show floor, reverberating load music and flashy images. But there was something about the Square-Enix booth this year that had me mesmerized.
The screen at the booth in South Hall was very large and benches in front of the screen invited people to sit and take in the experience. Square-Enix has always had incredible art design and graphics for their games, but watching Final Fantasy XIII, Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days and their newest title, Nier, play out on the massive screen left me drifting by every so often just to watch them again and again. What made it even more comfortable was that the screen sat near the floor, making the viewing area at eye level. No craning of the neck needed. It also helped that Square had their booth fairly spread out. You could play games and watch the big screen without being elbow to elbow with others.
Overall, a pretty nice experience that ran counter to many past E3 booth encounters with the big publishers.
And as pleasing as it was to see the traditional Square-Enix style games on the big screen, it was more than a bit disconcerting to see some unconventional Square titles up there as well. The company is publishing RTS Supreme Commander 2 from Gas Powered Games, third-person shooter Front Mission Evolved from Double Helix and RTS Order of War from Wargaming.net. One developer joked that they had to make extra sure their trailers were pixel perfect to be shown on the same big screen with the Square titles.