Sony has revealed that it won’t be attending E3 in 2019, marking the first time the publisher has elected to stay away in the show’s 24-year history.
In a statement provided to Game Informer, Sony confirmed that it will neither “activate or hold a press conference around E3” or exhibit on the show floor. “As the industry evolves,” it said, “Sony Interactive Entertainment continues to look for inventive opportunities to engage the community.”
“PlayStation fans mean the world to us and we always want to innovate, think differently and experiment with new ways to delight gamers. As a result, we have decided not to participate in E3 in 2019.” It did note, however, that it will be “exploring new and familiar ways to engage our community in 2019 and can’t wait to share our plans”.
This isn’t the first time that Sony has expressed a desire to ‘think differently’ regarding its traditional marketing events, of course. At this year’s E3, it ditched its usual announcement-heavy media briefing to instead focus on four of its biggest titles – Death Stranding, Spider-Man, Ghost of Tsushima, and The Last of Us Part 2 – in a show that was as bizarre as it was divisive.
Similarly, 2018 marks the first time that Sony won’t be holding its annual PlayStation Experience fan event, which has occurred every December in the US since its inception in 2014.
Speaking in September, Sony Interactive Entertainment boss and Worldwide Studios chairman Shawn Layden explained, “Now that we have Spider-Man out the door, we’re looking down into 2019 to games like Dreams and Days Gone. But we wouldn’t have enough to bring people all together in some location in North America to have that event. We don’t want to set expectations really high and then not deliver on it. It was a hard decision, but we have determined that this year we will not hold PlayStation Experience.”