The traditional summer of gaming news and announcements, with E3 as a tentpole, has been thrown askew by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In lieu of large in-person gatherings, industry figure Geoff Keighley has announced the Summer Game Fest: a four-month long season of gaming news and announcements.
"It's all the news you've been waiting for, but also in-game events, playable content and demos of select titles, and a bunch of fun surprises," Keighly wrote in a statement on Twitter.
The schedule has yet to go live, but Keighley has already teased a developer showcase in partnership with iam8bit, as well as Gamescom: Opening Night Live, a live stream that's part of Gamescom 2020's expanded digital presence.
Several publishers have already been confirmed for the season of news: 2K, Activision, Blizzard Entertainment, Bandai Namco, Bethesda, Bungie, CD Projekt Red, Digital Extremes, Electronic Arts, PlayStation, Private Division, Riot Games, Square Enix, Steam, Warner Bros. and Microsoft. Specific event details will be shared, along with additional publishers, in the coming weeks.
Also part of the Summer Game Fest season is the rollout of demos. In a press release, the Game Fest announced that "Steam, Xbox, and other platforms" will offer access to playable, limited-time demos of select game content. The upcoming Steam Game Festival, running June 9 through 14, is part of that.
Both Keighley and iam8bit stepped back from E3 2020 this year, prior to the show's cancelation due to concerns around the spread of COVID-19. With people unable to assemble in large groups, it seemed many of the events where major game announcements are made were put in jeopardy. Now, ahead of a new console generation, it looks like the all-digital approach will be how we see what's coming next for games.