Sony confirmed earlier this week that PlayStation will not be attending either PAX East this year as well as GDC, due to the novel coronavirus COVID-19.
In what is looking to become a global pandemic, the virus has already made its way across the globe, infecting over 80,000 people and killing a few thousand. Since being discovered in Wuhan, China in December of last year, the virus has been quick to act and companies are now taking it very seriously.
Justin Massongill, a Content Communications Manager for Sony, spoke about the decision to forego PAX East this year on the PlayStation Blog.
“Today, Sony Interactive Entertainment made the decision to cancel its participation at PAX East in Boston this year due to increasing concerns related to COVID-19 (also known as “novel coronavirus”). We felt this was the safest option as the situation is changing daily. We are disappointed to cancel our participation in this event, but the health and safety of our global workforce is our highest concern.”
Naughty Dog confirmed they won’t be attending PAX East either as parent company Sony shifts their studios away from the annual conference. It’s a shame too, as Naughty Dog had playable demos set for the show floor.
We’re so sad to have to miss PAX East! We were really looking forward to meeting you and seeing your reactions to the demo. Although we know this makes the wait until May 29 a bit harder, we appreciate your understanding. Don’t worry, we’ll have more to share closer to launch. https://t.co/tIJ0Z7Ztcs
— Naughty Dog (@Naughty_Dog) February 19, 2020
Also, Sony is pulling out of Game Developers Conference this year, but will offer digital formats with “video, online Q&As and more,” reports GamesIndustry.
In a statement to the outlet, Sony confirmed they wouldn’t be attending GDC: “We have made the difficult decision to cancel our participation in Game Developers Conference due to increasing concerns related to COVID-19 (also known as coronavirus). We felt this was the best option as the situation related to the virus and global travel restrictions are changing daily. We are disappointed to cancel our participation, but the health and safety of our global workforce is our highest concern. We look forward to participating in GDC in the future.”