Here’s The E3 (And Not-E3) 2021 Press Conference Schedule So Far

Here's The E3 (And Not-E3) 2021 Press Conference Schedule So Far

Calendar e3 2021

Image: Electronic software association

Last year, amid a mismanaged pandemic and sweeping social distancing regulations, the Entertainment Software Association canceled its annual event E3. But the stretch between late May and early November was littered with digital storefronts and press conferences. If you’ve followed video games closely, you’ve logged into a new event on a weekly basis.

This year looks the same. E3 is back, but as a fully digital event. Many of the industry’s biggest players are following suit, turning to digital presentations to relay the frenzy of trailers, updates, disclosures and “one more thing” to the masses. Here’s what we know to come, and we’ll update this article as organizers confirm details of upcoming events.

Wholesome Direct – May 2021

Twee indie showcase Wholesome Direct will return this spring, organizer Wholesome Games ad in March. The idea behind Wholesome Direct is simple: to present a list of relaxing, low-stress games as a sort of antidote to the loud and explosive games that tend to define this business. Date to be confirmed, but Wholesome Direct Submission Form (since closed) says accepted presenters have until May 10 to line up their ducks, so the event likely won’t happen for some time afterward.

Summer Game Fest – June 2021

Last year, Geoff Keighley kicked off the inaugural Summer Game Fest, a months-long show of appreciation for ouroboros for the video game hype. For the most part, that meant slapping a Summer Game Fest logo in front of partner streams, lending the promotional muscle of Keighley’s device to already existing events. (In July, Summer Game Fest made more than 70 demos indie games available on Xbox.) The whole shebang is coming back this year. According to the Summer Game Fest’s website, it will “present a more condensed calendar of events spanning less than a month.”

E3 – from June 12 to June 15

The mother of all gaming events, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, is back after the 2020 liftoff in the wake of the covid-19 pandemic. This year it returns as a fully digital event which, despite rumors suggested, will be completely free. The schedule for E3 2021 has yet to be revealed, but confirmed exhibitors include Nintendo, Xbox, Ubisoft, Capcom, Konami, Take-Two, Koch Media and WB Games. Of these, only Ubisoft has confirmed a time and date. For now, Sony, Rockstar, Activision and EA have not confirmed their attendance.

Ubisoft Forward – June 12 at 3 p.m. ET

Ubisoft’s big summer press conference, Ubisoft Forward, will land on the first day of E3. So what could the French mega-publisher reveal? At present, Far Cry 6, Rainbow Six Quarantine, and Rider’s republic do not have release dates. Ubisoft’s three big card games from last year – Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, Watch Dogs: Legion, and Immortals Fenyx Rising – all have behind-the-scenes expansions. And that doesn’t mean anything about the other venerable franchises under the Ubisoft umbrella. Maybe this is the year we finally get a new Splinter Cell?

PC Gaming Show + Future Games Show – June 13

This year, PC Gamer’s PC Gaming Show and GamesRadar’s Future Games Show will be broadcast as a double header. The long-running PC Gaming Show will probably be what it always is (an upcoming PC game series), but the Future Games Show is newer to the circuit, so everyone’s guessing what we might see. the recent spring showcase, as of March, broadcast over 40 games in two hours. (Two! Hours! Full!)

Pax Online – July 15 to July 18

Pax East, initially scheduled for early June, has been cancelled and replaced by a fully digital event called Pax Online.

Game Developers Conference – July 19 to July 23

Directory Game Developers Conference will return this summer, but as a fully digital event, yet with the same buffet of discussions, panels, question-and-answer sessions and networking events. Fair warning: it’s not free, and it certainly isn’t cheap. Passes start at hundreds of dollars.

GamesCom Opening Night Live – August 24

Despite problems and setbacks in the deployment of covid-19 vaccines throughout the European Union, GamesCom, famous in Cologne, Germany, will be a physical event this year. But the opening ceremony – a flagship event rightly called Opening night live—Will be broadcast worldwide. Like last year’s event, Geoff Keighley will host. Expect “global exclusives” and “global reveals”.


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