E3 2022 has been fully cancelled by the ESA, with a physical event having been ruled out back in January, and now the digital event that was expected to replace it also called off. The show could, however, try to make another comeback in 2023.
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E3 2022’s cancellation is something of a surprise. The 2020 show was pulled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, with the effects still being felt as variants emerged in early 2021, the ESA shifting to a digital format instead. The original plan for 2022 was to go back to a physical show, but with the latest major variant emerging over the winter, those plans were scuppered.
Looking beyond this year, the ESA will try and do both a physical and digital event in 2023 again, with “a reinvigorated showcase that celebrates new and exciting video games and industry innovations.”
Says 2023 event will be physical and digital. pic.twitter.com/6xfWecc2Jl
— Stephen Totilo (@stephentotilo) March 31, 2022
In the end, this probably won’t affect most gamers and those that like to tune in for the various press conferences. In fact, even before the pandemic, the once all-encompassing reach of E3 was being chipped away at as one publisher and console manufacturer after another chose to step away from the show floor, and instead chose to do their own thing at roughly the same time.
2020 was the first time that there really wasn’t an E3 and this led to a sporadic jumble of press conferences from individual publishers, while the ever-present visage of Geoff Keighley was beamed to screens to introduce his Summer Game Fest as a loose wrap-around digital event. With E3 2021, things got a bit more coherent and companies returned to giving us early June showcases, but there were also plenty of streams and events not associated to E3.
We can expect something in-between for 2022, then. E3 won’t be there as a branded digital event, but the Summer Game Fest has already been confirmed, so we’ll get to see plenty of Geoff again, and we’ll likely have a showcase from Microsoft and Bethesda, Nintendo, Ubisoft, Sony, and something wild and outlandish from Devolver Digital. EA will not be holding an EA Play Live event, though.
So E3 2022 is dead, but… will it really be changing much?
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