Gamescom organizers have confirmed that Gamescom 2020 will not take place physically due to the coronavirus pandemic. Instead, the event will be purely digital.
Organizers had previously stated Gamescom 2020 was still being prepared despite the pandemic, with organizers monitoring local regulations and the virus’ spread. Later, they stated it would still go ahead “at least in a digital format,” with digital events being “significantly expanded.”
In April, the German government banned major events until August 31st due to the coronavirus pandemic, putting doubt on whether Gamescom 2020 will run. Gamescom organizers then stated that Gamescom 2020 “will definitely take place digitally.”
Now, Gamescom organizers have announced that Gamescom 2020 will run purely digitally.
“The nationwide ban on major events until 31 August announced yesterday by the German government and states has direct consequences for hosting gamescom 2020 at the Cologne fair grounds. This means that a business or entertainment area in the previous format will not be possible this year. That does not change the fact that gamescom will definitely take place digitally. In addition to established formats such as gamescom: Opening Night Live and gamescom now, we are currently working intensively on the expansion of these offerings and introducing additional modules. In light of yesterday’s decision to suspend all major events until the end of August, the devcom developer conference will also be held exclusively in digital form. The first concrete information regarding digital gamescom 2020 will be announced in mid-May. However, the organizers ensure that visitors will receive a refund for already paid tickets and exhibitors will be reimbursed in full for payments made to Koelnmesse. Further information on the handling of ticket and booking refunds will be made available in the coming weeks.”
Geoff Keighly also confirmed on Twitter that Gamescom: Opening Night Live will be an all digital show. It will live stream on August 24th.
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic (also known as COVID-19 officially, or Chinese Flu to others) has affected many worldwide, from businesses to public gatherings and events. [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]. This includes the postponement of GDC, and the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, along with the cancellation of E3 2020 (including digital events), and Comiket 98.
We also recently reported on an employee at Sony Interactive Entertainment’s Tokyo offices contracted the virus, along with voice actor Rick May (Soldier in Team Fortress 2, Peppy Hare and Andross in Star Fox 64) passing away due to the virus. SiliconEra also reports a member of Capcom in Osaka also contracted the virus.
The Johns Hopkins Whiting School of Engineering are mapping the virus’ spread [1, 2]. As of this time of writing, there have been over 2.076 million total confirmed cases worldwide, and over 1.345 million active cases. There have been over 137,000 deaths, however over 518,000 people have made a “total recovery.”
Germany has had over 134,753 cases (over 53,949 active cases), over 3,804 deaths, and over 77,000 recoveries.