E3: ESA cancels in-person E3 for third consecutive year

By Jack Taylor – 7 January 2022

E3 will not be held in-person in 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with a digital replacement yet to be formally confirmed.

For the third year in a row, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) - the body which runs E3 - has confirmed to GamesBeat that it will not be running E3 2022 as an in-person event, which it had announced intentions to do after last year's digital event.

In a statement, the ESA said that "due to the ongoing health risks surrounding COVID-19 and its potential impact on the safety of exhibitors and attendees, E3 will not be held in person in 2022" and that "we remain incredibly excited about the future of E3 and look forward to announcing more details soon."

The ESA did not confirm that an online event would replace it, saying only that it was "excited about the possibilities of an online event" when pressed on the matter.

Meanwhile, Summer Game Fest - which debuted in 2020 and ran again last year - has been confirmed to return this year. Many fans saw the 2020 event as a successful online replacement to E3, although the number of events and seeming disconnect between them led to some criticism.