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Things Are Looking Worse For E3

Despite occasional glimpses at E3's shady side, the industry event has been an integral part of the video game hype machine, providing fans a first look at the future of gaming each year. Developers and publishers often use the showcase to debut upcoming titles and offer those attending a chance to see some new games in action. Since the onset of the ongoing pandemic in 2020, E3 and other similar gaming events have been forced to change course to satisfy new and rapidly changing safety guidelines. In some cases, events have even been canceled outright — which was the case for 2020's E3.

Despite the constantly shifting challenges, gaming events have found a way to limp on, often casting aside enormous in-person expos for digital affairs. This was what happened when E3 returned as a livestreamed event in 2021. Despite some of E3 2021 resulting in disappointing presentations, fans were still happy to have the event back in some fashion. Now, with gamers hoping E3 will maintain last year's course for a 2022 expo amidst the ongoing surge of the COVID-19 Omicron variant, one insider has cast some doubt. From the sound of things, there's a good chance E3 will be canceled outright this year. Here's why things are looking worse for E3 in 2022.

E3 may not even go digital in 2022

Just over a week ago, IGN confirmed that E3 would be canceling its planned in-person event this year, while the digital version remained up in the air. Now, long-time gaming journalist and current GamesBeat editor Jeff Grubb has shared his suspicions that the event might not happen at all. Earlier this week, Grubb posted a TikTok video (which has since been reposted to YouTube) detailing his doubts. Grubb believes the previous announcement that E3 may be shifting to a digital-only event this year is just a prelude to outright cancelation.

An ongoing trend over the last few years has been for major publishers to hold their own digital showcases, rather than participate in larger-scale expos where another competitor has the chance to steal the show. While Grubb admits that there's still a chance of "some things just kind of maybe limping into E3," it's just as likely the event won't happen, especially if there's nothing to show off.

The prospect of another year without E3 may not be what gamers wanted to hear, but there are still other exciting events on the horizon. For instance, Geoff Keighley's Summer Game Fest is still on, as the showrunner made sure to alert fans in the wake of E3's in-person cancellation. (per GamesBeat). Last year, the event offered something for everyone, more than making up for the lackluster E3 content.