E3 is all about the games. Our teams work months and months to prepare our preview event and our booth, not to mention all the work that goes into getting our games ready to show for everyone that walks through the doors. Downtown LA is completely taken over by the games industry, and with new consoles on the way the vibe was really electric this year.
In all the hustle and bustle that goes into the show, it can be easy to forget that videogames are more than just a business – it also gives us a unique opportunity to bring a smile to someone’s face who really needs it.
A few months before the conference, I was contacted by The Children's Wish Foundation of Canada who had a child, Jaden, who suffers from sickle cell and faces daily trials and challenges from the disease. One way he escapes these challenges is through playing games and he’s a huge EA fan. So when we were approached to see if we could help Jaden have an unforgettable experience with our games, it seemed like a perfect opportunity. I approached our game development teams who jumped at the chance to bring him behind the scenes.
Jaden flew out with his mother and brothers and met up with a few EA staffers to attend both the Xbox One and EA press events to get exclusive previews of upcoming games, and then go to walk the floor of E3 before the show even opened. He got his hands on some of our games well before they’ll hit shelves and got to meet a lot of the people who create the games he loves to play. His eyes were saucers the whole time, and he loved every minute of it.
After the event, Jaden’s mother wrote a letter that said “I have NEVER seen Jaden so excited my whole life… He said it's the first time he felt good about having sickle cell. [H]e felt so special and accepted and the whole wish could not have been more perfect.”
It’s nice to be reminded that videogames really do have the power to touch people and give them an unforgettable experience. If even just for a day or two, we were able to brighten a child’s life and that to me is priceless.
- Julie Wynn, Manager, EA Outreach
Jaden and his brother, Shaquille, outside of the E3 2013 Microsoft Xbox Press Conference.
Shaquille and Jaden hang out at the EA booth inside the LA Convention Center getting ready to try out some never-before-played games.