E3 has died and risen enough times in the past few years that the pope should probably launch an investigation. In today’s episode, IGN reports that Nintendo, Xbox, and PlayStation all have no plans to be a direct part of E3 2023. PlayStation stopped having a physical presence at E3 back in 2019, but Nintendo and Xbox were both part of the last physical E3 event back in 2019 and had continued being part of the event digitally through the pandemic.
However, for the audience watching this event at home instead of attending in person in Los Angeles, it may not matter. Xbox head Phil Spencer suggested last week that Xbox will probably hold a showcase that aligns with the typical E3 window regardless, even if it doesn’t have E3 branding. Sony has likewise been holding digital showcases during the typical E3 window each year. And Nintendo is Nintendo, known for doing whatever it feels like at any given moment, and the likelihood of a summer Nintendo Direct seems pretty high.
Indeed, Nintendo and Sony will probably just keep chugging along as usual this year. However, Xbox has a lot more to prove after a weak game lineup in 2022 and recent substantial job cuts at Microsoft; the latter may be part of the reason why Xbox is reportedly skipping the event though.
If Nintendo, Xbox, and PlayStation all have no direct presence at E3 2023, it will hurt E3 (and journalists and game developers hoping to make some connections), but it may not hurt much else. That being said, with ReedPop now running E3 2023 for the ESA, it’s likely to be a better-run event than in the past several years.
IGN reached out to ReedPop about today’s revelation though, and ReedPop offered up a wall of text in reply that miraculously manages to convey absolutely no information:
E3 is such a significant event for the game industry and being entrusted with an important cultural touchstone is not a responsibility ReedPop takes lightly. Since ReedPop took on the contract to run E3 six months ago, we’ve worked diligently with ESA members based on their feedback to create a new type of E3 that supports their goals and needs.
This process has taken time due to the tremendous amount of stakeholders offering input, though we appreciate that we could have been more transparent to questions for which we were still finalizing the answers. We continue to work tirelessly to create a show that brings together the global gaming industry. We believe we’ve created a new format for the event that serves the needs of both the industry and its fans, and are committed to building and growing it in the coming years.
As we spent much of 2022 refining how E3 2023 would take shape, reflecting on the feedback we solicited, we did not send a single contract to an exhibitor until the start of this month. We have received a tremendous amount of interest and verbal commitments from many of the biggest companies in the industry, and when we are ready to announce the exhibitors we are confident it will be a lineup that will make the trip to Los Angeles well worth it for the industry and consumers alike.