Reports from Gameindustry, arstechnica and even developers have indicated that due to Covid-19 outbreak the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) 2020 is facing an imminent cancellation. The now cancelled event was planned to be hosted at Los Angeles Convention Center in early June, and as previous E3, it would have been a three day event.
Cancel your E3 flights and hotels, y’all.
— Devolver Digital (@devolverdigital) March 11, 2020
2020 would be the first year without an E3 since the event was established by ESA in 1995, truly a sad day for developers and fans who wanted to be close to developers, hear its announcements and play demos of upcoming games.
On March 6 the ESA announced that they would be monitoring the situation around Covid-19 and hosting the event was a good choice,
We are monitoring and evaluating the situation daily.
Our E3 team and partners continue to monitor COVID-19 via the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). We are actively assessing the latest information and will continue to develop measures to further reduce health risks at the show.
Again, please know that we will continue to evaluate new developments and provide updates, as needed.
Surely it’s good for the image of the ESA to let fans know that the event is being cancelled with plenty of time, although the official announcement has still not taken place on the official ESA website, but for the moment, the information seems very reliable as even developers are advising people to cancel all reservations made.
The cancellation of E3 might change the way publishers reveal their biggest announcements, this was suggested by Kotaku’s Jason Schreir, he predicts that COVID-19 might be the last nail in the coffin for the E3 suggesting that, publishers might realize that they don’t need E3 and that hosting their own digital events might prove to be a better option after all.
If E3 2020 is cancelled and the video game publishers wind up doing digital events instead, I expect most of them to look at how little they lose by not being there (and how much money they save) and follow Sony's lead in ditching E3 permanently. Big existential moment here https://t.co/qSBgobOhGJ
— Jason Schreier (@jasonschreier) March 4, 2020
E3 2020 seemed to have been doomed since the begging of the year, as the ESA had only bad news to share about the event, the first news came in early January when Sony announced that due to ESA’s vision they would not take part in the event. Shortly after it was Geoff Keinghley who revealed that he wouldn’t be the host of the E3 as he feels uncomfortable with ESA’s plans. Problems kept piling up as yet another leak of participants happened in February, and finally the Creative Directors of E3 resigned. All those problems added to a virus outbreak where the World Health Organizations advises people to avoid large concentrations and big events has landed the final nail in the coffin for this edition of the E3.