E3 was set to come back this June, but coronavirus intervened, as it has for so many other conventions and conferences in gaming, tech, and elsewhere.
E3 may be dead, but that doesn't mean there's nothing to look forward to. Some companies will still be making the same announcements they normally would around the same time, while others will shift their schedule around. And there's still the question of what will happen with E3 2021.
Here's everything we know about E3 2020 so far.
When was E3 2020 going to take place?
Like past E3 conferences, E3 2020 was set to span over three days in early June, though publisher press conferences would have spread a bit ahead of that.
Why was E3 cancelled?
E3 was cancelled "following increased and overwhelming concerns about the COVID-19 virus."
The coronavirus epidemic had already seen MWC cancelled and GDC 'indefinitely postponed', alongside other events like Facebook F8 and Google I/O. Basically, big tech events are getting cancelled left, right, and centre, so it's not really a surprise that E3 was the same.
Will E3 tickets be refunded?
E3 organiser the ESA says that it "will be reaching out directly to exhibitors and attendees with information about providing full refunds," so it sounds likely that ticket buyers should get their money back - which is good news when the top 'Premium Badge' for this year's show cost a cool $995.
Will there be an E3 2021?
Officially? Yes. In its statement about the cancellation the ESA said: "We look forward to bringing you E3 2021 as a reimagined event that brings fans, media and the industry together in a showcase that celebrates the global video game industry."
What that means we don't yet know, but hopefully the trade body will use the extra time to better figure out how to serve both its industry and public attendees, the biggest challenge for the show over the last few years.
Which companies are still holding E3 press conferences?
The show may not be happening, but companies that had E3 announcements planned may still want to go ahead with them. That's something that the ESA wants to encourage, saying that it is "exploring options with our members to coordinate an online experience to showcase industry announcements and news in June 2020."
Microsoft's Phil Spencer has already said that the company will still hold an "Xbox digital event," which makes sense given that it was expected to go big this year in promoting its next generation Xbox Series X console.
Ubisoft is the only other company to comment so far, saying that it is "exploring other options for a digital experience."
Nintendo's presence is usually focused around an online-only Nintendo Direct anyway, so it seems like the company will go ahead and release one in early June anyway.
And as for Sony, it had already announced it wasn't attending E3 anyway, so don't expect it to change its plans now.
Other companies will hopefully announce their strategy over the next few months, but we already know that the likes of Bethesda, Sega, Capcom, Square-Enix, Take-Two, Bandai Namco, and Warner Bros. were planning to part in the show this year, so all of them will have announcements to make at some point.