Multiple sources have confirmed that E3 will not go ahead.
Speculation has been swirling about the fate of E3, scheduled to be held June 9-11 this year.
The cancellation of the event will impact a long list of developers, including the likes of Activision, Epic Games, Ubisoft, Bethesda and Square Enix.
According to Gamespot, multiple sources have confirmed that the event will not be going ahead due to circumstances including growing concerns about the spread of Covid-19 and declining industry support.
It was a tweet from game publisher Devolver Digital that first kicked the rumour mill into gear.
Cancel your E3 flights and hotels, y’all.
— Devolver Digital (@devolverdigital) March 11, 2020
This was soon followed up by a report from Ars Technica, quoting one source as hearing of the cancellation directly from "directly from ESA members". According to the same source, an official statement was supposed to go public today.
But there’s been radio silence from all the official E3 and ESA accounts.
Could this be the end for E3?
The cancellation will definitely be a blow to E3; the lead up to the conference this year has already seen it’s fair share of setbacks. Both Playstation announced they would not be attending the event this year. E3’s new creative team, iam8bit, quit after just five-weeks on the job. And the E3 Coliseum also caused a stir, with Geoff Keighley announcing he would not be producing the 2020 showcase this year, calling on the conference to innovate and become more than ‘just a show floor.’
I think E3 needs to become more digital and global....it's a brand that means a lot to people, but it shouldn't just be a show floor.
— Geoff Keighley (@geoffkeighley) February 12, 2020
E3’s faced plenty of criticism since it pivoted away from an industry exclusive event and began to try and court consumers. No doubt they were hoping that this year’s conference would provide them with some positive press.
Sony also skipped the 2019 conference, and they haven’t been alone in winding back their support of E3 either. There have been plenty of big names missing in previous years too, including Electronic Arts and Activision Blizzard.
We’ll have to wait to see when official confirmation arrives. But according to those in the know, it’s time to cancel your accommodation and try and refund those flights. Because this year, E3 won’t be happening.