E3: Microsoft, Sony & Nintendo word clouds

By now, it’s no secret what Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo wanted to say at E3. In some cases it was never a secret, even if it was supposed to be.

But what about how they said it? What can we glean from the the words they used?

Unfortunately – and surprisingly – no-one on the internet appears to have been sufficiently bored to transcribe the platform holders’ press conferences. So to engage in a nice spot of textual analysis, I’ve had to resort to the platform holders’ press releases.

So be it. Let’s have a look at which words cropped up most. That’s right: let’s word cloud.


Microsoft E3 2012 word cloud

Okay, Studios isn’t really fair, since so many of their games are by Microsoft Studios. And lots of those games are right up there: Halo and Gears and so on.

But with the announcement of SmartGlass – which Microsoft are definitely keen to stress is new – there’s an absolute shed load of entertainment. An awful lot of which is exclusive to the U.S.


Sony E3 2012 word cloud

Sony are evidently incapable of mentioning any one of their formats without suffixing it with system – so that’s why that’s huge.

Plenty of games there, but like Microsoft there’s almost as much entertainment and, in Sony’s case, content. But it’s obvious which property is key to Sony at the moment: LittleBigPlanet. It’s ruddy everywhere.


Nintendo E3 2012 word cloud

By contrast, Nintendo clearly consider themselves to be in the game making business – increasingly unlike Microsoft and Sony. Not much entertainment here, then, but a lot of Mario.

And with the new Wii U to promote, there’s quite a lot about the GamePad, and why they think it’s kind of a big deal.

It’s not only about games, it’s also about players. Which is probably how you’d expect Nintendo to differentiate themselves – from Microsoft, who make no noticeable mention of their public; and from Sony, who prefer consumers.


  • Word clouds created with Many Eyes.
  • The platform holder’s name and formats excluded from the word clouds, because obviously they’re mentioned a lot.
  • Microsoft: two press releases combined – one on games, one on entertainment and SmartGlass.
  • Sony: one neat, wide-ranging press release.
  • Nintendo: two press releases combined – one each for Wii U and 3DS.


Jake has been here since the beginning, with hundreds of reviews and countless other guff to his name. These days, not so consistent.

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