As we know by now, the COVID-19 pandemic, also known as the coronavirus, has had world wide-ranging effects and has changed countless lives. This includes the video game industry, and due to these effects and concerns, the ESA officially canceled E3 2020. This marked the first time since the event’s inception that it has been shut down, something that everyone took notice with. The numerous developers and publishers later stated that they were planning their own digital events to show what new IP’s they were working on as well as new updates to existing ones.
Unfortunately, we learned today that Bethesda will not be one of them. Pete Hines, the Global Senior Vice President of Marketing and Communications, stated in a tweet today that the company will not host a digital showcase in June, and will instead make announcements and reveals in the upcoming months. Since Bethesda almost always has a bevy of games to show off each year at E3, this is rather surprising to see. However, it’s important to note that each company is handling the pandemic in their own way, and handling each situation as they see fit.
Given the many challenges we’re facing due to the pandemic, we will not host a digital Showcase in June. We have lots of exciting things to share about our games and look forward to telling you more in the coming months.
— Pete Hines (@DCDeacon) April 1, 2020
Bethesda did also just release Doom Eternal through one of their subsidiaries id Software, which has gone to garner critical acclaim. With this “safety net” in place, Bethesda more than likely will just wait a while before making any concrete announcements for future projects. Two of the biggest IP’s that fans, as well as us, have been eagerly waiting on are Starfield and The Elder Scrolls VI. Both titles were announced at E3 2018 during their press conference, and we haven’t heard anything from them since. This was also the same conference that revealed Fallout 76, and we all know how that game turned out.
While Bethesda won’t be showing their new projects in one fell swoop, we can still look forward to some other studios that have already stated that they will be holding a special digital conference event in the future. This includes Microsoft, Nintendo, Square Enix, and Ubisoft to name a few. Before the cancellation, Sony announced that they would skip E3 for the second year in a row, possibly planing out another showcase for the upcoming PlayStation 5. The company has also stated that the system’s holiday release time frame will not be affected by the ongoing pandemic.