The Enter­tain­ment Soft­ware Asso­ci­a­tion has offi­cial­ly announced plans for a “reimag­ined” and “all-vir­tu­al” E3 2021, after teas­ing it last week.

Some big names in the gam­ing indus­try have already signed up for the show, includ­ing Nin­ten­do, Xbox, Cap­com, Kon­a­mi, Take-Two, Warn­er Bros., Ubisoft and Koch Media. The ESA did say more com­pa­nies will join lat­er. It is unknown if PlaySta­tion and EA will join, as they haven’t attend­ed an E3 in years.

When Does E3 2021 Start?

E3 2021 will begin on June 12th and end on June 15th. It will be com­plete­ly dig­i­tal, but ESA’s ear­li­er state­ment did leave the pos­si­bil­i­ty of a phys­i­cal com­po­nent, but the orga­ni­za­tion prompt­ly switched to a dig­i­tal show.

E3 Is Evolving

ESA pres­i­dent and CEO Stan­ley Pierre-Louis said E3 2021 will con­tin­ue to be an impor­tant event, despite the new all-dig­i­tal format.

For more than two decades, E3 has been the pre­mier venue to show­case the best that the video game indus­try has to offer, while unit­ing the world through games,” he said. “We are evolv­ing this year’s E3 into a more inclu­sive event, but will still look to excite the fans with major reveals and insid­er oppor­tu­ni­ties that make this event the indis­pens­able cen­ter stage for video games.”

The ESA said E3 2021’s new struc­ture allows “more peo­ple than ever” to par­tic­i­pate. While for play­ers, E3 is known for the big announce­ments; but it’s his­tor­i­cal­ly been a forum through which peo­ple in the indus­try form con­nec­tions and partnerships. 

Remaining Questions

Even though E3 is only about three months away, ESA’s announce­ment was scare on details regard­ing the spe­cif­ic for­mat and struc­ture of the show. No one even knows what the dai­ly pro­gram­ming will be like.

E3 2021 won’t be the only show hap­pen­ing this year, with games media vet­er­an Geoff Keigh­ley host­ing his own Sum­mer Game Fest in June. Oth­er pub­lish­ers may hold their own brief­in­gs over the next few months before the hol­i­day sea­son begins. 

E3 2022 Will Be A Physical Show

While it is still extreme­ly ear­li­er, ESA has said it plans to hold E3 2020 as an in-per­son event next year. They said noth­ing more, so obe­vi­ouslt time will have to pass before we can learn more.