The status of Gamescom 2020, scheduled to start on August 25, has been in question for weeks, as other game industry events like E3 and GDC have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While event organisers have already announced plans for expanded digital events, it seems any hope for the physical Gamescom event in Cologne is now gone – Germany is set to ban major public gatherings through the end of August.
Stores and schools are expected to begin reopening over the next few weeks, as German news is now reporting, but large events will still be prohibited until August 31. Exactly what constitutes a major event among lawmakers remains to be seen, but given the hundreds of thousands of people that attend Gamescom every year, it’s unlikely the convention will be an exception.
Gamescom organisers have yet to make a public comment on the situation. We’ve reached out for further information, but given that some of us in the PCGN (home) offices just received our Gamescom press passes shortly ahead of today’s announcement, it’s likely that event staff are still figuring out what to do, too.
An announcement was already scheduled for “mid-May” on the status of Gamescom’s physical presence, but it’s likely that the final decision will now be coming much sooner.
In these uncertain times it’s good to have something to look forward to: @gamescom Opening Night Live returns on Monday August 24. We’ll be streaming live then. In mid-May our partners at gamescom will update fans on the status of the physical event in Germany. pic.twitter.com/kyyl7r3VVu
— Geoff Keighley (@geoffkeighley) March 31, 2020
Gamescom Opening Night Live, hosted by Geoff Keighley, was already expected to go forward as scheduled on August 24.