E3 2021 might be a free to attend digital occasion – regardless of reviews suggesting the occasion’s organisers, the Leisure Software program Affiliation, was planning to place some elements behind a paywall. In response to publishing sources talking with VGC, the agency was contemplating charging a $35 payment for “premium pass”, which would come with unique bonuses like on-demand recreation demos.
Nevertheless, a spokesperson for the ESA confirmed that this yr’s occasion will, the truth is, be free for everybody: “I can confirm on behalf of the ESA that there will be no elements at E3 2021 that will be behind a paid-for pass or paywall.” VGC reviews that publishers had been essential of the proposed fee plan, so the idea right here is that it’s reneged on the proposal behind-the-scenes.
ESA intends for this yr’s E3 – which it’s formally dubbing the Electronics Leisure Expertise, versus the Electronics Leisure Expo – to function keynote classes from publishers, in addition to an awards present and doubtlessly even recreation demos which followers will have the ability to stream on-line. There’s additionally chatter of digital cubicles, in addition to merchandise shops and doubtlessly even unique press entry.
However publishers will nonetheless must stump up vital sums to the ESA so as to get entangled, and whereas VGC reviews that many are comfortable to get entangled as a present of assist, they’ll be reserving their “main” reveals for impartial digital occasions. Which means that E3 2021, scheduled to get underway from thirteenth June, may find yourself being a watered down showcase; it’s price remembering that the likes of Sony, EA, and Activision had already deserted the occasion earlier than the pandemic cancelled final yr’s present.