E3 2020 is Now Officially Canceled

E3 2020 is Now Officially Canceled

For the first time since 1995, this summer's gaming calendar will not center around E3.

After reports and rumors of E3 2020’s demise started circling over the past 24-hours, the Entertainment Software Association made things official today and announced that the annual convention will indeed not be taking place in Los Angeles this year.

Like many other conventions that have been canceled over the past few weeks, including GDC and SXSW, the ESA cited ongoing health concerns stemming from the coronavirus as the reason as to why E3 2020 will not be taking place. In one form or another, E3 has occurred every year since 1995. This will be the first time that the convention has not been held since that time.

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“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,” the ESA explained of its decision in a statement. “Following increased and overwhelming concerns about the COVID-19 virus, we felt this was the best way to proceed during such an unprecedented global situation. We are very disappointed that we are unable to hold this event for our fans and supporters.  But we know it’s the right decision based on the information we have today.”

As of now, specific plans of what might be taking place come June 2020 in lieu of E3 2020 haven’t been divulged. The ESA said it’s looking to coordinate something in the show’s place, however. “We are also exploring options with our members to coordinate an online experience to showcase industry announcements and news in June 2020,” the ESA said. Further news on just what this might take the form of will come about in the next few weeks and months.

And as for E3’s future, the ESA has said it is looking to hold the convention once again next year. “We thank everyone who shared their views on reimagining E3 this year. 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,” it stated. Specific dates for the convention have yet to be given, however.

There is likely going to be a whole lot more that happens with this story, not only today, but well into the future. E3 was arguably the biggest single event on the gaming calendar every year for a variety of publishers in the video game industry. To see it not happening in 2020 likely changes marketing and announcement plans for many in the business. In a year without E3, it will be extremely interesting to see how every publisher responds and moves about continuing to try and sell and market their upcoming products.