With PS5 On The Way, Sony Will Skip E3 Again

With PS5 On The Way, Sony Will Skip E3 Again
PlayStation’s booth at E3 2018 (Photo: Christian Petersen, Getty Images)

Sony will skip E3 again this year, a major blow to the annual video game conference in a year that will also see the release of the next PlayStation. Instead, the corporation will hold its own events throughout the year to talk about the next-gen PlayStation 5.

“We have great respect for the ESA as an organisation, but we do not feel the vision of E3 2020 is the right venue for what we are focused on this year,” a spokesperson told GamesIndustry.biz.

Sony was once a regular fixture of E3, with a huge booth on the show floor and an annual press conference full of game and hardware announcements. In 2019, however, Sony skipped the show, saying it wanted to “think differently.” Critics and observers figured that Sony had pulled out because it didn’t have much to show and that it would be back in 2020 to build up buzz for the PlayStation 5, which will be out this fall. But now, it’s become clear that Sony no longer sees value in attending the video game industry’s biggest trade show.

It’s perhaps a sign of the times. Microsoft has also been distancing itself from E3, instead holding Xbox events and interviews at the L.A. Live complex next door, and last year’s E3 felt strangely empty. Last year, E3 also leaked the addresses and phone numbers of thousands of attending journalists.


  • Kinda sucks, i love watching all companies announce big news all at once.

    I wonder if Sony can keep its dominance with the next gen consoles. It tends to swing between company from generation to generation. So far all Ive seen is pretty average stuff from Sony, nothing impressive. Though, i guess we dont really know much yet.

    • I guessed last year that Sony is going Nintendo’s route of making announcements through their own platforms like Nintendo Direct (a la Sony’s State of Play) or through their own funded conferences. I also like the fact that Sony is playing everything close to their chest because I hope they save everything for the big PS5 reveal and wow everyone.

      • Yeah but Nintendo still have an E3 direct where they announce stuff. They just dont save up all their news for the conference. Sony got nothing ;(

        • I guess that’s where Sony differentiate their strategy from Nintendo then. Also since Sony has a stronghold on the current home console market I believe they can sit back and reveal nothing until the PS5 launch because they’re banking on the hype for Final Fantasy VII Remake, Ghosts of Tsushima & The Last of Us 2 to carry them over until then. Which is fine for me because E3 is always at it’s weakest when console generations are coming to a close.

    • If Sony continues as they are now then there’s a very good chance that they will.

      Their success this gen isn’t because of Xbox’s bad start but a resurgence at the end of the last gen.
      (Though Xbox’s stumble definitely contributed)
      The PS3 ended up quietly beating out the Xbox by the end, long after victory had been called for the 360 and coverage focused on the next generation.
      The interesting thing about that is it broke two of the longest running rules of the console wars, the end of the gen is defined by the start and each new gen is a clean start from the gate.
      While Sony isn’t giving much away it also gives the impression that they aren’t changing anything which given their current position and brand, isn’t a dumb move.

      • Come on man, lets not argue semantics. The 360 was a dominate console, just like the ps2 was over the original xbox. As you mentioned, I swear about 30 million ps3 consoles were sold when it dropped to a ridiculous cheap price and the consoles were coming to the end if its life. The 360 was superior in not only games but in performance, xbox live etc.

        I dont really like playing consoles off against each other but a dominate company has literally change every time a new gen console has come out. Can Sony be the first to retain dominance? they easily could, but they have done absolutely nothing yet to convince me they will. Early days, i know.

        • Don’t want to start any wars, I own all consoles but comparing PS2 dominance over other consoles and Xbox 360 is not the same.

          Remember, we get a lot of news from U.S. and yes, there the Xbox 360 did sell more, but in Europe, the PS3 outsold the Xbox 360.

          Final sale numbers for both PS3 and X360 were around the 85 million mark despite the 360 having a headstart, so in the end, Sony definitely made up ground.

          By comparison, the PS2 sold over 150 million and the OG xbox sold around 25 million (albeit yes the PS2 had a headstart).

          Also, a company hasn’t always changed dominance with each console. Nintendo dominated NES and SNES generations, while Sony dominated PS1 & PS2.

          • sorry, referring to microsoft and sony. Nintendo are….different haha

            Yeah i own pretty much all of them as well. Kinda have to if you love games

  • “We have great respect for the ESA as an organisation”

    PR speak for: We hate ESA’s guts as individuals.

    Doesn’t worry me too much. Sony will still get the news out. It’s the news that matters, not the medium that they use. Though the anticipation of E3 was always fun.

  • Sony what is going with you guys? You’ve skipped last year’s E3 and now your skipping this year’s you guys are seriously making our blood boil.
    Anyway while you guys will not be at this I am expecting a release date for Ghost of Tsushima hopefully soon and while you’re still doing production for the next upcoming Playstation console which is the PS5.
    Don’t listen to what Microsoft says about their next generation Xbox console they are seriously in last place and they are serious struggling with their hardware sales and if Microsoft does not keep up then that’s the end of the Xbox lifecycle.

  • Ok, so is that the end of E3 as we knew it? I mean, if a company isn’t going to the apparently number 1 gaming event of the year in a new console year….that’s massive. Last year was explained away that they had nothing really to show. Not the case this year. Far from it.

  • E3 probably got too big for its own good, and now it has started to collapse in on itself. While it was kind of cool to have that annual frenzy of announcements and trailers etc, it got to the point where there were just so many of them that a lot of worthy stuff got lost in the noise if it wasn’t on stage at one of the major press conferences. I can understand companies wanting to wait until a time when there’s some clear air to make their announcements.

  • Despite the relevance of E3 dwindling, this is still surprising. Larger media outlets like newspapers, etc cover E3 and Sony not being there risks them not getting messaging out to the everyday person. People who have their pulse on the gaming industry are few while most just go by what they read in the paper and if they see ‘new Xbox’ that creates industry awareness that Sony potentially won’t have.

    Only hope we aren’t seeing the resurgence of ‘Arrogant Sony’ again like they did after coming off the PS2 and thought they were invulnerable.

    • Getting their name in the paper is small beans. They’ll have ads and massive displays all over the place at launch and the people that care enough to buy one at that time will certainly know ahead of time about a launch date. Everyone else will quickly be caught up in the advert onslaught.

    • Yeah that’s didn’t turn out great for their stake in that generation. Even if the PS3 had arguably a better and wider selection of games, the war was lost.
      I found no reason to get an Xbox this generation so I’m hoping Sony don’t botch this. SSD , backwards compatibility is a good start.

      • To me I’ve always preferred PlayStation to Xbox, it’s just got the exclusives I gravitate to more, however I will say this gen, Game Pass has been a game changer for me (no pun intended).

        Xbox has been saying everything I want to hear from Sony re: trying to get as much BC as possible, all 1st party games are day 1 on game pass and similar messaging re load times.

        I’m sitting on the fence as to which I’ll get first (I’ll end up getting both anyway) but at the moment, Xbox has been saying more of the right things.

        Plus that digital foundry article where they speculate (and it’s all speculation until we know) that from what they’ve uncovered that the Xbox will be more powerful, I’m
        Going to be following everything closely tethering one way or the other.

  • No ferret it’s not the end of and E3 is not dead because that is the second time Sony will be skipping E3 this year but I’m definitely desperate for a Nintendo Direct later this year with Nintendo staying for this year’s E3 as well as Ubisoft Square Enix and Microsoft.

  • Not a shock.
    This year is all about the PS5 reveal.
    It was always gonna be them doing their own thing.
    I’m excited – bring on the new year

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