Devolver’s Chaotic Digital Press Event Returns for E3 2021
Devolver Digital is not a regular publisher, while they do focus on publishing independent games. What makes them stand out more than other companies who do the same thing is how they treat their press events. Devolver started doing press events for E3 in 2017. However, their option to join in on the E3 fun was only a few months away. So Devolver opted to change it up with what they called the “Big Fancy Press Conference,” a purely satirical video that included some actual announcements for titles. Now, they’re continuing the trend into 2021 with their latest take on their “Devolver Direct.”
The Devolver Storyline To Prepare Fans for This Year
Devolver has turned their press conferences from regular gaming news to an ongoing story revolving around the company’s terrible business decisions by Chief Officer of Synergy Nina Struthers, a character played by Actress Mahria Zook. Devolver’s 2021 Direct conference will include a lot more of this, so players who want to know what to expect should be caught up on the whole story thus far.
Devolver E3 2017
2017’s E3 conference may not have included many announcements, but the one aspect that made Devolver’s Press Conference’s so entertaining were the in-between sections. These sections made fun of certain aspects of the gaming industry. Such as letting players throw money at their screen to pay, as well as earlier access games. However, in pure Devolver fashion, this ended up with their audience member losing a hand. And the press conference ended with Nina Struther’s head exploding. As her deceased body is being dragged offstage in the credits. Devolver’s 2017 Press conference also started its own inside joke with the phrase, “Check a Look,” becoming the main way that Devolver would show their games during the forthcoming conferences.
Devolver E3 2018
While insane and out there, Devolver continued their legacy, as the Big Fancy Press Conference was a hit. They brought back Mahria Zook to play Nina once more and continued their press conference in 2018, announcing more games, as well as continued to poke fun at the world of gaming. Devolver announced LootboxCoin, a cryptocurrency that has no value and is a physical coin, which can only be bought on the Devolver website, where its price changes on the hour every hour. They also announced a fake mini console, which was followed by a remaster of Metal Wolf Chaos. This time, Devolver started their storyline in the press conference by having the fan who lost his hand from the previous year enact his revenge on Nina by gunning her down, only to have Devolver remake her in a massive homage to Robocop.
Devolver went heavier into their story with the next iteration of the Devolver Press Conference, now titled Devolver Direct, which takes place a year after 2018. However, one of the other devolver employees, Linda from marketing, decides to push the idea of a Nintendo Direct-style presentation, which becomes a massive push for as many announcements as possible. While not as many in-between sections as there are announcements, Nina is forced into announcing as many games as possible, helpless to Linda’s scheme.
Being bigger than the last in both content and length, Devolver teamed up with multiple celebrities to push their newest games, such as PlayStation’s Shuhei Yoshida, who announced Fall Guys after discovering that the titular characters will eat one another when left alone, Xbox’s Phil Spencer, who stars with the Carrion Beast from the game of the same name, Geralt of Riva from The Witcher, and esports pro SonicFox. The focus of satire and the story of Devolver Digital’s 2020 Direct is about overthrowing Linda and the constant stream of announcements and hype culture, which could be akin to Metroid Prime 4 and Bayonetta 3, two games that have been announced and have received no information. Linda, now the CMO of Devolver, wants to continue the Devolver Directs although the market is saturated. The task of stopping her falls on two of the previous characters from the story Zane and Margaret, who must get Nina to announce a special game to stop the Directs once and for all. Geoff Keighley stars as the architect who gives both Margeret and Zane the keys to fix this whole mess, while Linda starts announcing games that don’t exist for the sake of hype. Games like “Getting Down with Bennet Foddy” and “SonicFox’s Furry Fighter’s 4.” Another highlight of the Direct was “My Uncle that Works at Nintendo,” a character who spills gossip about Nintendo characters, as well as announces Oujia for Switch and PC. This all culminates with the release of a virtual first-person stealth game in an abandoned Devolver convention center, and with the announcement of Devolverland, the torment of Nina Struthers comes to an end.
Devolver Digital announced on Twitter that they’re bringing back the Devolver Big Fancy Press Conference variant of their Direct, and Nina Struthers will return once again as the CEO of Devolver Digital. While fans will not know what to expect on July 12th when Devolver Digital’s press conference begins, the phrase “Hotline Miami 3” appears on a board behind Mahria Zook in the background of the announcement. However, this isn’t a confirmation that the game will be at the presentation, as Devolver is known to play with expectations. While Devolver hasn’t shown much of their hand for 2021’s Direct, one thing is certain: according to them, “The Future Begins again on June 12th.”