Is anyone surprised?

E3 2021 Physical Event Has Reportedly Been Cancelled

The E3 live 2021 event has reportedly been cancelled, according to Los Angeles city documents regarding conventions and tourism.

e3 logo
Credit: E3/ESA

The documents are part of a report by the City of Los Angeles, which lists various cancelled live events. Amongst these events was E3, which usually takes place during June every year at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Discovered by Resetera user Rösti, the document provides the following update in regards to E3’s physical 2021 event [via NME]:

E3 Logo
Credit: E3

“Cancelled live event in 2021. Working with production team on broadcast options at LA Live/LACC. Working on 2022 & 2023 licence.”

E3’s 2021 cancellation means that it’s been two years since we last had a live E3 event. The show will likely go ahead as an online event, providing it can get the backing of major players in the industry [via VGC].

The ESA has prevalent members from across the gaming scene but has since been abandoned by the likes of Nintendo, Sony, EA and Ubisoft, who have since held their own online reveal events. 

Reveals And Release Dates E3 2019
Credit: Geoff Keighley/E3

The ESA previously stated to VGC that it would share the details of the 2021 online event soon:

We can confirm that we are transforming the E3 experience for 2021 and will soon share exact details on how we’re bringing the global video game community together. We are having great conversations with publishers, developers and companies across the board, and we look forward to sharing details about their involvement soon.”

Despite the ESA’s confidence, the organisation didn’t state which developers and publishers it was conversing with. In response to previous reports detailing E3’s online plans, Nintendo’s Reggie Fils-Aimé expressed his concerns for the convention during a conversation with Gamertag Radio:


I think that the platform holders need to find a way digitally to enable their fans, their players, to experience the content because that’s the key for E3 right – the ability to be playing The Last of Us Part 3 for the first time, or to play that next Breath of the Wild game for the first time, or to play the next great game coming from the new amalgamation of all the Xbox studios.”

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Physicality is an essential part of the convention’s experience, mainly since it provides players and publications with hands-on previews. Nevertheless, online substitutes are necessary during the current pandemic, especially when it comes to mass gatherings within convention halls.

Were you looking forward to a physical E3 2021, or do you think it’s right to have been cancelled in favour of another virtual experience?


Featured Image Credit: E3