Skip to main content

PlayStation, Facebook Gaming, Oculus VR to skip GDC 2020 due to coronavirus risk

The teams behind Sony’s PlayStation, Facebook Gaming, and the Oculus VR headset will not be in attendance at the Game Developers Conference 2020, in what is another blow to the video game industry from the new coronavirus outbreak.

Sony Interactive Entertainment, in a statement to, said that it has “made the difficult decision” to withdraw from GDC 2020 due to coronavirus concerns.

Related Videos

Sony also recently revealed that it was skipping PAX East in Boston, for the same reason.

“We are disappointed to cancel our participation, but the health and safety of our global workforce is our highest concern,” the company said in its statements for the cancellation of its participation in both events.

The Facebook Gaming team, including Oculus VR, has made the same decision, withdrawing from participation in GDC 2020 because of the”evolving public health risks” brought by the coronavirus, according to a statement emailed by a Facebook spokesperson to Polygon.

Facebook Gaming and Oculus VR, however, will still share its planned announcements for the annual event through videos, online Q&As, and other methods. They were supposed to put up booths and send employees to GDC 2020, and meetings with partners that were supposed to happen at the event will be hosted remotely over the coming weeks.

In an earlier statement, the GDC revealed that Chinese exhibitors will have to send North American personnel to the show, as Chinese citizens will not be able to participate due to travel restrictions. The organizers also revealed that stringent health security measures will be applied, including electrostatic disinfectant sprayers in busy areas, frequent wipe-downs of items that are touched a lot, and encouraging attendees to often wash hands and exhibitors to regularly disinfect equipment such as controllers and headsets.

However, it appears that the promised measures are not enough to assure PlayStation, Facebook Gaming, and the Oculus VR team that their personnel will be safe from the health risks brought about by the coronavirus outbreak.

As of now, GDC 2020 will still push through from March 16 to March 20 in San Francisco, unlike this year’s Mobile World Congress, which was supposed to run from February 24 to February 27 in Barcelona.

Editors' Recommendations

2023 could be PlayStation’s most radically reinventive year yet
A PS5 stands on a table.

2022 has been a disruptive year for all players in the games industry. As Microsoft continues to fight to complete the largest acquisition the industry has ever seen, Sony appears to find itself in a precarious situation. Despite being the market leader in current-gen hardware sales and revenue, the current shifts in the industry -- not just in acquisitions -- seem to be stirring some change within the company.

All through 2022 Sony has been planting seeds for what it hopes to be major new growth opportunities outside of its console and first-party studio output. From mobile and VR to live service, subscriptions, and even multimedia pushes, all signs point to 2023 being a redefining year for the PlayStation brand.

Read more
Sony revives a PlayStation 2 deep cut as a PS VR2 launch title
Fireworks explode in Fantavision 202X.

Sony announced a new batch of games coming to the PlayStation VR2, including a handful of titles that'll launch with the hardware on February 22. The most notable game on that list is Fantavision 202X, a left-field revival of one of the PlayStation 2's most peculiar launch games.

The announcement comes from a new Sony blog post focused on Japanese-developed games coming to PS VR2. The post includes five games, four of which are newly announced launch titles for the tech. Fantavision, which launches February 22, especially stands out as it has some historical significance for PlayStation fans.

Read more
More Ratchet and Clank games are joining PlayStation Plus Premium
Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Insomniac's Ratchet & Clank franchise, Sony announced that it is adding five new games from its PlayStation 3 era to the PlayStation Plus Premium subscription service on November 15.

A few Ratchet & Clank games were already available on Sony's revamped PS Plus service, but the update expands that list out significantly. Here's the full list of games coming to the service.

Read more