E3 used to be one of the biggest gaming events of the year in June, but the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has definitely changed that. With no physical event for 3 years in a row and no digital event in 2022, it wasn’t really clear if the annual trade show still had a future.
This year, Geoff Keighley’s Summer Game Fest will once again try to fill the gap by bringing various digital events from video game publishers under the same banner. However, the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) confirmed yesterday that the annual E3 will be back in full force in 2023.
“We’re excited about coming back in 2023 with both a digital and an in-person event,” ESA president and CEO Stan Pierre-Louis told The Washington Post in an interview. “As much as we love these digital events, and as much as they reach people and we want that global reach, we also know that there’s a really strong desire for people to convene — to be able to connect in person and see each other and talk about what makes games great.”
There are no confirmed dates for E3 2023 yet, but it will be interesting to see if the ESA manages to get video game publishers back on board. Even before the pandemic hit the world two years ago, major publishers like Sony and EA had already stopped attending E3. Microsoft also used to hold its annual Xbox media event in a separate venue in Los Angeles.
While there will be no E3 this year, the Summer Game Fest opening keynote will have many world premieres and gameplay demos tomorrow at 11 AM PT. Microsoft will follow up on Sunday, June 12 with its Xbox and Bethesda games showcase that will start at 10 AM PT.