E3 is the world’s biggest gaming convention, but for the second year in a row it won’t feature a presence from PlayStation. Sony told GamesIndustry.biz that it won’t be at E3 in June, which follows its absence at 2019’s show. The gaming giant confirmed its absence in a statement to CNET.
“After thorough evaluation [Sony] has decided not to participate in E3 2020,” said a Sony spokesperson. “We have great respect for the ESA as an organization, but we do not feel the vision of E3 2020 is the right venue for what we are focused on this year.” ESA is the company behind E3.
The spokesperson added that Sony’s “global events strategy” will be more fan-focused in 2020, with “hundreds of consumer events across the globe” being planned.
Sony’s abstaining from last year’s show was noted, but it’s even more pronounced this year since the company plans to launch the PlayStation 5 console by the end of the year. E3 has historically been a go-to for game giants like Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo to unveil or detail upcoming consoles.
ESA released its own statement in response to Sony’s dropout, ensuring gamers that “E3 2020 will be an exciting, high-energy show featuring new experiences, partners, exhibitor spaces, activations and programming that will entertain new and veteran attendees alike.” Cool. You can read the whole statement, which actually says nothing about Sony, here.
However, Sony’s decision doesn’t mean the next console generation will be absent from E3 — Xbox boss Phil Spencer confirmed Microsoft’s E3 attendance in a tweet.
“Our team is hard at work on E3, we look forward to sharing with all who love to play what’s ahead for us,” he wrote. “Our artform has consistently been propelled by the cross-section of creativity and technical progress. 2020 is a milestone year in that journey for Team Xbox.”
The PS5 is scheduled to launch before the end of 2020, just like Microsoft’s Xbox Series X. But we don’t know how much it’ll cost, what games it’ll launch with or, unlike the Series X, what it looks like. With E3 off Sony’s calendar, expect to see those details revealed at something like a State of Play event (the last of which, in December, brought news of a Resident Evil 3 remake and an Untitled Goose Game port).
Fret not though, PlayStation enthusiasts. Gaming companies like Square Enix and Ubisoft are likely to still have a large presence at the show, which takes place June 9 to 11, so you’ll see plenty of news about the upcoming PlayStation 4 (and maybe PS5) titles.
First published Jan. 13, 5:03 p.m. PT.
Updated Jan. 14, 4:55 a.m. PT: Adds Phil Spencer tweet.
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