The COVID-19 pandemic may have led to the cancellation of E3 2020, but several groups have stepped up and planned all-new, all-digital events to fill its admittedly huge shoes.
In this time of separation and uncertainty, the gaming community has come together like never before, and now we can look forward to a summer absolutely chock full of exciting announcements, demos, and interviews from major studios and indie publishers alike.
Here's a quick look at everything that's been announced so far, including official dates and (when available) links to schedules and places to watch videos and streams. Expect more news as our amazing game-filled summer gets closer.
Summer Game Fest / Day of the Devs Developer Showcases
What: A season-long collection of all the upcoming gaming events (many of which are listed below) curated by industry luminary and Game Awards creator Geoff Keighley. It will include multiple developers' showcases, organized by the group Day of the Devs, which aim to focus on the upcoming projects from both AAA studios and indie developers.
When: Monday, June 22 and Monday, July 20 (Day of the Devs), May-August (Full event)
Where to Learn More: The festival's official schedule, which is updated continuously as new events are added
IGN's Summer of Gaming
What: A global, digital collaboration between news titan Imagine Gaming Network (IGN) and significant publishers including Microsoft, Blizzard, EA Games, CD Projekt Red, Square Enix, Google Stadia, and more. It will feature announcements, gameplay demos, interviews, streaming, and speed-running showcases, as well as charity events
When: Throughout June, with IGN Expo taking place Friday, June 5—Tuesday, June 9
Where to Learn More: This official schedule reveal published by IGN
GameSpot's Play for All
What: A series of charity streams hosted by industry professionals, including developers, voice actors, news personalities, and more. This event is produced in partnership with Direct Relief in order to raise money for healthcare workers around the world battling the COVID-19 pandemic.
When: Throughout June
Where to Watch: Right on Gamespot!
Where to Learn More: The "news" tag on GameSpot's official Web site
Guerilla Collective / PC Gaming Show / Future Games Show
What: An all-new collaboration between Media Indie Exchange and Kinda Funny Games, highlighting upcoming indie titles from Paradox Interactive, Humble Publishing, Funcom, Larian Studios, and more. It will also include the PC Gaming Show, a digital event that was initially scheduled as part of E3's lineup.
When: Guerilla Collective Live, PC Gaming Show and Future Games Show all happening on Saturday, June 6, with press events to follow on June 7 and 8
Where to Watch: The Guerilla Collective Twitch channel
Where to Learn More: The official Guerilla Collective Web site, where you can sign up to receive even more news and updates
Limited Run Games #LRG3
What: A digital press conference presented by Limited Run Games, discussing essential updates regarding the future of physical gaming
When: Monday, June 8 at noon PT / 3 p.m. EST
Where to Watch: The Limited Run Games Twitch channel
Where to Learn More: The official Limited Run Twitter account
Steam Game Festival Summer Edition
What: Steam creator Valve Software shows off loads of titles coming to its popular PC-based gaming service over the next year. Players will get a chance to try out demos of several of these games before adding them to their Steam wishlists.
When: Tuesday, June 9—Monday, June 14
Where to Watch: All you need is a Steam account—which can be created for free!—to participate
Where to Learn More: The official Steam Gaming Festival page on the Steam Store (which looks a little sparse right now, but more news is coming!)
Cyberpunk 2077 Night City Wire
What: Developer CD Projekt Red does a deep dive into their highly anticipated futuristic RPG, Cyberpunk 2077, which will release on September 17. Details are scant, but rumors hint that this live stream might feature all-new gameplay.
When: Thursday, June 11 (time TBA)
Where to Watch: TBA
Where to Learn More: The official Cyberpunk 2077 Twitter
EA Play Live 2020
What: A digital announcement of upcoming titles from famous publisher Electronic Arts, rumored to include the world premiere of some highly anticipated games.
When: Thursday, June 11 at 4 p.m. PT / 7 p.m. ET
Where to Watch: TBA
Where to Learn More: EA's Web site, which currently features a nifty countdown to the event!
New Game Plus Expo
What: A collaborative showcase featuring announcements from 14 developers based across Japan and North America, including Sega, Spike Chunsoft, Koei Tecmo, SNK, Arc System Works, and more. In addition to the reveals of upcoming titles, many participating developers will host Q+A sessions with their fans.
When: Tuesday, June 23, beginning at 8 a.m. PT / 11 a.m. ET
Where to Watch: The New Game Plus Twitch channel
Where to Learn More: The Expo's Twitter account, which is featuring various "Partner Spotlights" leading up to the event
What: A multi-day live stream co-produced by the Japan Independent Games Association (JIGA) and the City of Kyoto. It will showcase over 75 upcoming titles, primarily from Japanese indie developers. Some of the announced titles will also be made available as demos for players to try out.
When: Saturday, June 27—Sunday, June 28 (with demos remaining available until Saturday, July 11)
Where to Watch: BitSummit's Twitch channel
Where to Learn More: BitSummit's website, but you can also join their official Discord, where you might just get a chance to chat with developers and presenters before the event!
What: The popular Evolution Championship Series (EVO) fighting game tournament has moved online for 2020. Featured titles include Street Fighter 5: Champion Edition, Tekken 7, Skullgirls 2nd Encore, Them's Fightin' Herds, and more.
When: Every weekend in July, beginning Saturday, July 4
Where to Watch: TBA
Where to Learn More: The EVO Twitter account, although updates have been rather scarce other than the official announcement of the tournament's lineup
What: A digital conference focusing exclusively on upcoming titles from French developer Ubisoft, including a brand new update on highly anticipated title Assassin's Creed: Valhalla.
When: Sunday, July 12, beginning at noon PT / 3 p.m. ET
Where to Watch: TBA
Where to Learn More: The constantly updating Ubisoft News Web site
Xbox 20/20 Games Studio Showcase
What: A showcase of first-party titles from Xbox Studios, as part of their monthly Xbox 20/20 series of digital events. Has been confirmed to feature information regarding the next-generation Xbox Series X console as well as Series X launch titles, including Halo: Infinite.
When: July—date TBA
Where to Watch: TBA
Where to Learn More: Xbox Wire, the official news source for all things Xbox
Game Developers Conference Summer
What: The first-ever all-digital version of the popular conference focusing on the development process behind the games we know and love. Learn about everything from designing and programming to pitching, producing and advertising the game of your dreams
When: Tuesday, August 4—Thursday, August 6 (time TBA)
Where to Watch: Register online to find out more
Where to Learn More: The official GDC Summer website
Gamescom Opening Night Live
What: A live stream kicking off a series of digital events held in place of Gamescom, the annual convention held in Cologne, Germany. News regarding the next-generation PlayStation 5 console is expected to be revealed
When: Thursday, August 27—time TBA, with digital Gamescom events continuing through Sunday, August 30
Where to Watch: Gamescom Now, the event's digital platform (link not yet available)
Where to Learn More: The English-language Global version of the Gamescom website
Keep checking back as more links and information are added to this article as we get closer to the events listed above.
Of course, don't forget to check out GameLuster all summer long, we'll be bringing you the latest, most excellent up-to-the-minute news from every one of these digital game events!
Are you ready for what might just be the biggest summer the gaming industry has ever experienced? We sure are, and we can't wait to share it with you!