EA will not host a press conference at E3 this year. The company will host its usual EA Play event the weekend ahead of the show, but it will not have a formal presentation showing its upcoming games. There’ll be live streams throughout the event which will offer details on the new stuff, but the traditional press conference is dead.
“We’re skipping the press conference this year,” EA says in the official announcement, “and are replacing it with multiple live streams that will air during the first two days of the event, bringing you more of what you’ve told us you want – more gameplay and insights from the teams making the games.”
EA Play runs from June 7 through June 9, just ahead of E3, and will offer free entry for attendees to get “first hands-on with some of our biggest games.” There’ll also be a bunch of streamers there, broadcasting from the, er, “Creator’s Cave” at the event. EA will provide further details on who’ll be there and what’ll be shown ahead of the event.
Although EA hasn’t technically participated in E3 for years, the EA Play press conference typically provided the unofficial start for the show. If other traditions hold, we’ll now be waiting for Bethesda and Microsoft on Sunday to get things started.
But that’s assuming nothing else changes. Sony has already announced that it’ll be ditching E3 entirely this year, and with one of the big three out of the picture, everything that was once certain is now up in the air.
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Folks have been predicting the death of E3 for years, and it’s always been premature – but the reality is that publishers no longer need a big show to reveal their games to big audiences. Some are sticking with E3 for now, but EA likely won’t be the last to fundamentally shift its relationship to the show.