E3 2023 canceled, ESA confirms, as publishers pull out

E3 2023 has been cancelled, organizers at the Entertainment Software Association announced Thursday, following the reported withdrawal of major publishers such as Ubisoft, Sega and Tencent. Those companies joined console makers Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony previously confirmed not to participate in this year’s E3an event that promises to be the first time in four years, the epic game industry show back to Los Angeles.

“This was a difficult decision as we and our partners went to great lengths to make this a reality, but we had to do what was right for the industry and what was right for E3,” Kyle said. Marsden-Kish, Vice President of Global Gaming at ReedPop, in a press release. “We appreciate and understand that interested companies will not have playable demos available and resource challenges have made being present at E3 this summer an obstacle they cannot afford. can be overcome. To those who have committed to E3 2023, we regret not being able to showcase what you deserve and what to expect from the ReedPop event experience.”

ReedPop and ESA said they will “continue to work together on future E3 events.”

IGN reported Tuesday that some major publishers have pulled out of the event, while others cast doubt on their participation in the show. On Thursday, IGN reports that E3 organizers have told members that E3 2023 “simply doesn’t garner the long-term interest needed to do it in a way that can demonstrate scale, power, and impact.” of our industry.”

This year’s E3 was announced as the return to the LA Convention Center for the show’s first live event since 2019. ESA invited ReedPop, the company that produced PAX, Star Wars Celebration. and other fan-focused events, to host E3 2023. The plan is to bring together publishers, developers, media and buyers with “consumer components live” and digital showcase. When announced in July 2022, ReedPop promised that “E3 2023 will be epic — a return to honor what has always worked — while reshaping what hasn’t.”

A competitive event, produced by Geoff Keighley Summer Game Festival, will act as an alternative to game publishers and developers to introduce their products in June. Microsoft and Ubisoft will have their own digital events for that month, in line with the dates of the Summer Game Festival (June 8-10) and the now-cancelled E3 (scheduled for next month). takes place from 11 to 16 June).

The cancellation of E3 2023 — the third edition of the event to be scrapped in recent years — is another worrying indicator of the health of the fair and the industry’s assessment of it. After E3 2019, the most recent in-person version of the event, E3 2020 was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead, the game publishers held their own digital rollouts that summer, within a few months. In 2021, E3 is held as a fully digital event. ESA tried both the live and digital versions of E3 2022, but both incarnations have been cancelled.

Update: This story has been updated with comments from ESA and ReedPop.

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