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Exhibiting at Game Conventions Can Be Expensive

A fascinating article went up on today as Matt Sayer spoke to a number of different publishers and developers to find out how much it costs to exhibit games at shows like E3, PAX, and GDC. Unless you follow the games scene closely, the results are pretty surprising as there are plenty of hidden costs that go alongside demoing a game at one of these events.

As Matt details in the article, necessities like electricity are not included with an E3 booth. Developers have to pay for that out of pocket on top of a booth fee (it was $3,333 per day for a 200sq ft booth at E3). Expenses can pile up quickly when attending one of these events. It’s worth noting that E3 is certainly one of the more expensive ones to exhibit at, as the article shows off less pricey alternatives as demoing at a three-day PAX will cost around $2,240.

Here’s an example from the piece of how costly it can be to exhibit at E3 for a four-person team:

  • 200sq ft booth, E3: $10,000
  • Electricity: $700
  • Two 65″ TVs for demo reel: $3000
  • Four demo stations (PC+monitor): $4000
  • Table for demo stations: $84
  • Custom booth display (inc. setup): $100 per square-foot
  • Booth help: $15/hr per person, 9hr days
  • 1500 custom-branded buttons: $850
  • 1000 flyer handouts: $580
  • Courtyard by Marriott, quad hotel room w/ two Queen beds: $359 a night
  • International return flight: $1000 per person
  • Food and drink: $75 per person

Total cost for four people, three-day convention: $45,131

All of these costs are broken down in the fantastic article over at, as Matt Sayer looked at this topic from every possible angle. Definitely check it out, as it’s full of interesting tidbits.

Let us know in the comments if you’re suprised that simply having a strong E3 presence could cost that much?