E3? More like E0! That’s the kind of groan you might expect at an E3 press conference — you know, if the games industry’s biggest marketing event in history actually happened in 2022.
Yes, for the second time in three years, the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) has canceled its flagship event. In 2020, the promoters declined to host an E3, citing the Covid-19 pandemic. It returned last year, but as a purely digital charade. Rumors of the cancellation of E3 2022 were circulating back in January, and ESA officially canceled the event in the spring, saying it would be back next year.
But the show(s) must go on. Indeed, without an E3 to suck up all the oxygen in the room, the video game roadmap looks like 2020: a series of disparate conferences scattered throughout the summer. Yay? Anyhow, here’s the schedule of press conferences scheduled for summer 2022, which we’ll update accordingly as more companies announce their non-E3 plans.
Summer Game Fest – Thursday, June 9; 2:00 p.m. ET
The non-E3 season starts with Summer Game Festival, a digital showcase where games industry hype man Geoff Keighley takes to the stage to talk about “world exclusives”! and “World Premieres!” In between, a slew of trailers for games we’ve seen before. Pretty much every publisher on the planet – from bigwigs like 2K and EA to slightly less big, uh, wigs like Annapurna – signed on board for last year’s event. This year’s partners are TBA, so it’s unclear exactly what to expect.
Guerrilla Collective – Saturday June 11; 11:00 a.m. ET
guerrilla collective, now in its third year, is a showcase focused on indie games. The last two years were quite a lot of fun, featuring games from Neon Doctrine, Akupara, and other offbeat publishers. No reason to expect that this year will be any different. Immediately afterwards follows…
Wholesome Direct – Saturday June 11; 12:30 p.m. ET
If typical video game pressers are metal concerts, Healthy direct is an all-acoustic open mic at your local coffee shop. Instead of big-budget bombast, the event showcases lighter fare from typically independent developers. event of the last year contained a handful of smaller games that made it big, including the calm fishing sim Moonglow Bay and the gut-wrenching emotional puzzler unpacking.
Future Games Show – Saturday, June 11; 3:00 p.m. ET
Future Games Show is an hour-long showcase presented by GamesRadar+. The publication says it will highlight 40 games, mostly from medium-sized publishers like Team17 and Thunderful. In any case, in terms of game-to-time ratio, expect a pretty sizzling reel!
Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase – Sunday June 12; 1:00 p.m. ET
Bethesda is now just one of Xbox’s 8,170 first-party studios, but it’s the only one with top-billing for Microsoft’s non-E3 presser, the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase. Microsoft’s two big exclusives for 2022 were games published by Bethesda: the Space RPG starfieldand the vampire shooter developed by Arkane redfall. Both have recently been delayed into the first half of 2023. Bethesda has not shown any gameplay for either. Hmm, I wonder what goes into this press conference…
PC Gaming Show – Sunday June 12; 3:00 p.m. ET
PC gameris aptly named PC gaming show starts immediately after the Event Future marquee. It is billed as a double header with the Future Games Show, with advertising text that it starts exactly 24 hours later.
over watch Showcase – Thursday, June 16; Timing TBA
blizzard will host a showcase for his “is that Yes, really a continuation?“ continued to over watch. It will contain details of what is coming surveillance 2including the next PvP beta.
THQ Nordic Showcase – Friday, August 12; Timing TBA
Over the past year and changes, Embracer Group has quietly grown into a major gaming publisher. It’s not yet known if Embracer will start making its own splashy presses to cover everything, but one of its subsidiaries, THQ Nordic, will host its own late summer event. It will highlight updates to existing games—the commercial for the presser showed a glimpse of last year’s extremely average BioMutant– and pull back the curtain on some new games.
Gamescom Opening Night Live – Thursday, August 25; Timing TBA
This is how it begins, this is how it should end. Geoffstravaganza The summer of 2022 ends with Gamescom opening night live, which for some reason is scheduled for the second day of the Frankfurt Games Fair. Last year, announcements during Opening Night Live were almost single-handed Raised February 2022 as one of the busiest months for blockbuster games ever (RIP reviewers and guide authors). Please, Geoff, don’t do that again this year. I’m sorry I made fun of your sneakers that time!