There will be no E3 Expo this year in either its digital or physical form. That was the news from the official E3 Twitter account, which posted a succinct announcement about the show being fully cancelled this year. It stated:
“ReedPop and the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) have announced that both the digital and physical events for E3 2023 are cancelled.”
Behind the scenes, many insiders suspected that this was coming. The biggest game publishers including Sony and Microsoft had pulled out of the 2023 show. Nintendo had long since stopped attending the annual event, instead hosting a special digital presentation about their new and upcoming games that was posted during the show.
That left a handful of larger publishers and a bunch of independent or smaller developers and publishers to anchor the show this year. However, even they started to pull out of the event. The most recent one to jump ship was Ubisoft, which stated that it would instead show off its upcoming titles over the summer.
The show has been cancelled before, more recently because of the pandemic. The last physical show took place in 2019.
This latest cancellation, with both the digital and physical events getting the ax, may be the final straw for the show, which had fallen well short of the events of its glory days when thousands of gaming reporters, developers and fans would descend on LA to get hands-on presentations about the latest games and gear. The show had originally been located in Atlanta, but outgrew the facilities there and moved to LA, where it filled up the entire convention center and overflowed to other buildings, hotels and even vacant lots (which were practically transformed into gaming parks during the show) around the city. Sadly, those days seem long gone now.
Although The ESA has said that they are evaluating the feasibility of hosting future E3 Expos, many industry insiders are skeptical that there will ever be another E3.