Under normal circumstances, E3 2020 would have been the main point of attraction for summer. But the continued spread of Covid-19 has put a halt to the traditional gaming schedule, with ESA cancelling the annual event for the first time since its debut in 1996, and other companies pushing back or terminating their showcases.
Yet, the show must still go on. In place of physical press conferences, the gaming industry has sought out online spaces as an alternative, where livestreams, announcements, and videos are delivered virtually, much like the Nintendo Direct presentations.
From the digital iteration of E3 2020 (of sorts) to IGN's Summer of Gaming, here's the full list of every online game event slated for the whole of summer.
|Date||Showcase||Time (PDT)||Singapore Time (GMT+8)|
|4 June – 24 June||IGN Summer of Gaming (details in next section)||TBA||TBA|
|5 June – 9 June||IGN Expo||TBA||TBA|
|6 June, Sat||Indie Live Expo||4am||7pm|
|6 June, Sat||Guerrilla Collective Live||10am||1am (7 June)|
|6 June, Sat||PC Gaming Show||12pm||3am (7 June)|
|6 June, Sat||Future Games Show||2.30pm||5.30am (7 June)|
|8 June, Mon||Upload VR Showcase||2.30pm||5.30am (9 June)|
|9 June – 14 June||Steam Game Festival: Summer Edition (hosted by Geoff Keighley)||TBA||TBA|
|11 June, Thurs||The Escapist Indie Showcase||8.30am||11.30pm|
|11 June, Thurs||EA Play||12pm||3am (12 June)|
|11 June, Thurs||Night City Wire (Cyberpunk 2077)||4pm||7am|
|22 June – 26 June||BIG Digital (Brazil’s Independent Games Festival)||TBA||TBA|
|23 June, Tues||New Game+ Expo||8am||11pm|
|27 June – 28 June||BitSummit Gaiden||TBA||TBA|
|11 July, Sat||Warframe TennoCon||TBA||TBA|
|12 July, Sun||Ubisoft Forward||12pm||3am (13 July)|
|27 August, Mon||Gamescom Opening Night||TBA||TBA|
|TBA||PlayStation 5: The Future of Gaming||TBA||TBA|
Summer of gaming (June 4 to June 24)
A new global event set to fill the void of E3 2020, IGN's Summer of Gaming features a suite of programming planned for kick-off in early June, and will bring the latest gaming and console hardware news to viewers.
Big industry players like 2K, Square Enix, SEGA, Bandai Namco, Amazon, and Google Stadia are expected to make an appearance and join the line-up of hands-on demos, preview impressions, gameplay, news recaps, developer interviews, and more.
Full details are as follows, with June 4, 2020 being the starting date:
- Unannounced Game (Funcom / The Outsiders) - Exclusive Unannounced Gameplay Reveal with The Outsiders' David Goldfarb
- Unannounced Game (Merge Games) - Exclusive Game Reveal
- Unannounced Game Reveal - Exclusive Reveal Trailer
- Mortal Shell (Cold Symmetry) - Exclusive Gameplay World Premiere
- Observer: System Redux (Bloober Team) - Exclusive Next-Gen Deep Dive
- Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time (Soleil Games) - Exclusive Gameplay First Look
- Unannounced Classic Revival (Merge Games) - Exclusive Game Reveal
- Unannounced Game (Fabraz) - Exclusive Game Reveal
- Wasteland 3 (Deep Silver) - World Exclusive Trailer
- Second Extinction (Systemic Reaction) - Gameplay World Premiere
- Borderlands 3 (Gearbox) - Exclusive Bounty of Blood DLC Preview w/ Gearbox Creative Director Matt Cox
- Special Icons Interview: David Hayter, the original voice of Solid Snake, discusses Metal Gear
- New World (Amazon) - Exclusive War PvP Gameplay, Developer Interview
- Everspace 2 (ROCKFISH Games) - Exclusive Alpha Gameplay Reveal Trailer
- Total War: Troy (Creative Assembly) - Exclusive Gameplay Interview
- Special Icons Interview: Brian Fargo discusses Blizzard's founding and why RPG fans should be looking forward to Wasteland 3
- CD Projekt RED Livestream (with IGN pre- and post-shows)
- EA Play LIVE (with IGN pre- and post-shows)
- Humankind (Amplitude Studios) - Exclusive Gameplay Interview
- Animal Crossing: Celebrity Island Tours Charity Live Stream
- Corepunk (Artificial Core) - Exclusive Gameplay and Interview
- Destroy All Humans! (THQ Nordic) - Gameplay and Interview
- Mafia: Definitive Edition (Hangar 13) - Worldwide Gameplay Debut w/ Hangar 13 President and CCO Haden Blackman
- Scarlet Nexus (Bandai Namco) - Exclusive Trailer and Interview with Game Director Kenji Anabuki
- SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom (THQ Nordic) - Rehydrated Exclusive Early Access Livestream
- SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom (THQ Nordic) - Rehydrated Exclusive Gameplay Interview
- Unannounced Game Reveal - Exclusive Reveal Trailer
- Torchlight III (Perfect World Entertainment) - Gameplay and Interview with Series Creator Max Schaefer
- Special Icons Interview: Chris Avellone, writer of Fallout New Vegas and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, discusses the magic ingredients in a great RPG
- Special Icons Interview: John Romero, creator of Doom, and game designer Brenda Romero discuss RPGs and shooters in 2020
- Dreamscaper (Afterburner Studios) - Exclusive Gameplay Feature Deep Dive
Potential publisher showcasesPHOTO: Geek Culture
Square Enix, Bethesda, Devolver Digital, Warner Bros., and Nintendo are expected to host their own showcases, although no official announcement has been dropped for each yet.
After the overwhelming success of Final Fantasy VII Remake, Square Enix's next course of action remains unclear, but many are speculating that the Japanese giant will be giving official word of a PC port.
Presumably, the final gameplay of Marvel's Avengers is also primed for a grand unveil.
Bethesda, meanwhile, has confirmed that it won't have a digital showcase in June, but assured fans that information on future titles will be shared.
Ghostwire: Tokyo is already geared up for stage (or screen, in this case), with first-person action game Deathloop expected to take the spotlight as well. As for the hugely-anticipated Starfield, much remains under wraps, and it's just a very slight chance that more details might surface.
Not The Elder Scrolls 6, though - Todd Howard has mentioned that the fan-favourite series is still in the very early stages of development.https://twitter.com/devolverdigital/status/1237792386538975239
An absolute delight to watch, Devolver Digital's showcases are often wacky and bizarre. The indie game publisher is more than familiar with the pre-recorded format of press conferences, and is looking to replace its E3 session with a planned livestream.
What the company has up its sleeves remains to be seen, though one thing is certain: There will be at least one strange happening during its replacement event. No surprise there.
The physical cancellation of E3 2020 is a bummer to Warner Bros., who was set to host their very first press conference at the big gaming event.
Given that its name is on the list of the Summer Game Fest, however, it seems the company has found another presentation space in the form of Geoff Keighley's Summer Game Fest, which means its supposed new Harry Potter and Batman titles may be announced.
Nintendo was originally included in the line-up for E3 2020, keeping up its status as an event mainstay. As such, it's likely that the Japanese giant has some news in store for fans, although what its content is anyone's guess.
Cloud save compatibility between Steam and the Switch, or a new game announcement maybe? Guess we'll find out soon enough.
The bustling, hectic summer schedule promises to keep gaming enthusiasts on their toes, with plenty of focus on both AAA and indie titles.
The cancellation of physical events is most certainly unexpected and unavoidable, so it's nice to see that the spirit of gaming is being maintained in other days.
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This article was first published in Geek Culture.