Organizers hope to provide an ‘online experience’ this June.
COVID-19 claimed yet another victim this morning as E3 event organizers Entertainment Software Association announced the cancellation of this year’s conference due to fears of a potential coronavirus outbreak.
“After careful consultation with our member companies regarding the health and safety of everyone in our industry – our fans, our employees, our exhibitors and our longtime E3 partners – we have made the difficult decision to cancel E3 2020, scheduled for June 9-11 in Los Angeles,” states the EAS in an official release.
In lieu of a physical event, organizers are working with companies in the hopes of partnering on an online experience that would feature game announcements and updates originally planned for the main event. The statement also seems to indicate the return of E3 in 2021, though perhaps not in the same format as previous years.
“We look forward to bringing you E3 2021 as a reimagined event that brings fans, media and the industry together in a showcase that celebrates the global video game industry.”
With Sony Playstation having opted out of E3 2020 for the second year in a row and Nintendo continuing to make its biggest announcements via its Nintendo Treehouse live streams, the infamous trade show has been on a steady decline for years. Could this coronavirus cancellation be the final nail in the coffin? As the ESA hints in their statement, it’s possible E3 will return next year, though the odds of a physical, in-person conference are now up in the air.
Earlier this month it was confirmed that the 2020 Game Developers Conference (GDC) and South by Southwest Festival are being canceled in anticipation of an outbreak. Both Facebook, as well as Google, will also be abandoning their respective conferences this year in favor of a series of online announcements, live-streamed talks, and remote workshops.
This morning the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 crisis a global pandemic, with roughly 120,000 cases having been reported around the globe, 1,000 of which in the United States. For more information on how to keep yourself protected, check out these helpful tips provided by the CDC.
Feature Image Credit: ESA