E3 2020 on thin ice due to Coronavirus concerns

It seems that GDC 2020 was only the beginning when it comes to Corona-chan delivering an impact on this year’s largest gaming events. E3 2020 is expected to receive a major hit yet again, thanks to the Coronavirus. More & more companies are starting to pull out from the venu, with the recent case being iam8bit, who were recently assigned as the creative directors for the event. Regardless however, the ESA still plans to continue to move ahead with the event. According to the E3 website, the event is taking proper procedures to ensure a safe and successful show. The main site states “Our E3 team and partners continue to monitor COVID-19 via the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).”. In addition, the show is apparently taking further steps by reminding attendees to follow WHO and CDC guidelines while at the show including:

–       Washing your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

–       Avoiding close contact with people who are sick.

–       Covering your cough by flexing your elbow or sneeze with a tissue, then throwing the tissue in the trash.

–       Avoiding touching your face.

–       Staying home when you are sick, except to get medical care.

–       Avoiding handshaking or cheek-kissing as greetings – use the elbow or fist bump.

Meanwhile, you have the LA convention center and world airports taking their own measures by increasing the number of hand sanitising stations, cleaning and disinfecting surfaces more as well as “Enhancing their ability to address any attendees who become ill while on site”.

Now are all of these points reassuring? maybe. A part of me however can’t help but think that this may lead up to be a disaster in the making. Considering how infectious this illness is (20x compared to the flu supposedly) and how victims can be asymptomatic when infected doesn’t really help to calm people’s nerves down. This is also not even mentioning how incredibly shady the WHO and CDC have been when it comes to sharing outbreak information to the general public. If anything, this only seems to demonstrate how devoted the ESA are to keeping this redundant show alive rather than actually keeping the public safe and healthy.

And really, is all of this effort worth it? What person who hasn’t been drinking the AAA corporate kool aid really gets excited for E3 anymore. The show has been pretty shite in recent years, maybe even more. Filled to the brim with soulless, corporate giants shoving their latest, flashy marketing down your throat while orchestrating their cringe worthy conferences and performances. And it seems to keep going downhill from there, as the show for this year is apparently going to put more emphasis on celebrities, media and influencers rather than the actual gaming content itself. So in other words…. it’s basically becoming Twitchcon now.

Keep in mind too that E3 has already sustained a number of major blows to its reputation prior to the outbreak. Sony’s permanent withdrawal for instance, Geoff Keighley not attending for the first time and also the leak which contained personal info of over 2000 journalists, streamers, YouTubers, analysts and investors. The list of missteps coming from this event just keeps going on and on, making it even more plausible for a cancellation to occur. The presence of the Coronavirus just seems to be rubbing salt onto the wound at this point. It won’t be a surprise then to see other major companies like Nintendo, following Sony’s decision to drop out for good, in place of hosting their own online directs instead. They would save a lot of time, money and manpower in doing so.

If the Coronavirus really is going to be the final nail in the coffin for E3 2020, then the end results won’t be without controversy. Sure, for some the outbreak may be a blessing in disguise, if E3 2020 eventually does get cancelled. However, that doesn’t eliminate the possibility that at least some people will get sick there if they’re not careful enough. Regardless, it’s best if more fellow weebs and gamers started stocking up on supplies when shit really hits the fan, or just buy crap tons of toilet paper like everyone in Australia’s doing.