The ESA considering a mix of physical and digital in future E3 events

Into the metaverse of E3

The Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3, returns this weekend after skipping 2020’s show with an all-digital lineup. And while the virtual experience is a ramification of the COVID-19 pandemic, it sounds like the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) is considering how it can mix digital into the fold moving forward.

Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, ESA president Stanley Pierre-Louis says the expectation is for the ESA to return to physical events, but with some digital component as well. This year provides an opportunity to see what can be applied to future events that will “probably be a mix of physical and digital,” though nothing’s locked down yet.

“The shape of that is yet to be determined, and we hope to learn from this year’s event what transfers well,” Pierre-Louis told GI.biz.

The digital E3 is running from June 12 through 15, featuring showcases from publishers like Xbox, Nintendo, Ubisoft, and more. And while the stream side has been solid, the digital portal has certainly been interesting to watch evolve.

Whatever the plans end up being, it certainly looks like the industry is taking notice of what a digital summer of games news can bring to the table. Keep up with all the dates and times for this year’s showcases with our handy-dandy E3 stream schedule.

Eric Van Allen