E3 makes months-in-advance call to skip convention halls in 2022

Hands put on medical gloves in front of an E3 logo.

Enlarge / On Thursday, E3 made an incredibly early call about its 2022 incarnation. (credit: Aurich Lawson | Getty Images)

If anyone thought 2022 might be the year of E3’s physical, in-person comeback, its creators and showrunners have bad news for you. The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) confirmed on Thursday that it will not proceed with a traditional exposition floor plan for E3 2022, an event that, in previous years, was the games industry’s biggest coming-out party of the year. Worse, organizers have yet to commit to an online-only version, as we saw in 2021.

The ESA’s official explanation, first offered to VentureBeat, is “the ongoing health risks surrounding COVID-19 and its potential impact on the safety of exhibitors and attendees.” When asked directly about whether E3 will return to last year’s online-only format, ESA representatives declined to answer. Instead, they suggested that the organization is “excited” about such an option.

Ars Technica’s attempts to contact the ESA’s E3 news line, which was live during its E3 2021 period, bounced back on Thursday as undeliverable.

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