Throughout the past year, a number of trade shows and press events have been forced to go entirely digital because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Gamescom was one such show, and after having gone all digital last year, its organizers were hoping to host a hybrid show that blended in-person events and digital livestreams in 2021. As it turns out, that won’t be happening, as the organizers behind Gamescom have announced that the show will be all digital once more this year.
Gamescom announced the decision today, saying it opted to go all-digital in 2021 after “extensive discussions with partners and exhibitors.” Even though it feels like we’re seeing a light at the end of the tunnel in regards to the COVID-19 pandemic, Gamescom says that “too many companies are unable to participate in physical events this year due to the still difficult development.”
The all digital Gamescom will take place at the end of August and will be free of charge for all fans. The ceremony will kick off on Wednesday, August 25th with Gamescom: Opening Night Live, an event hosted by Geoff Keighley. The main event will then take place on Thursday, August 26th and Friday, August 27th.
Throughout the week, Gamescom will also be hosting Devcom for developers and publishers, though we’re assuming that will be a less visible affair than the main show. Exhibitors and partners who will be showing things off at Gamescom haven’t been revealed yet, likely because Gamescom hasn’t nailed down that final list. We can probably expect that to come down the pipeline as we get closer to August.
What we do know is that Gamescom will “completely relaunch” its digital platform for 2021, which should make it easier for viewers to switch between livestreams and create a schedule of events and shows that they want to watch. We’ll keep an ear to the ground for more on Gamescom 2021, but for now, it sounds like we can expect an all digital show that takes a step up from last year’s event.