Sony pulls out of GDC 2020 over coronavirus concerns

By Sherif Saed, Friday, 21 February 2020 10:36 GMT

PlayStation has cancelled its GDC plans for this year.

Sony has confirmed that it will not be attending Game Developers Conference (GDC) in March. The company cited concerns over the coronavirus outbreak, the same reason behind its decision to also skip PAX East later this month.

“We have made the difficult decision to cancel our participation in Game Developers Conference due to increasing concerns related to COVID-19 (also known as coronavirus),” Sony said in a statement to GamesIndustry.

“We felt this was the best option as the situation related to the virus and global travel restrictions are changing daily. We are disappointed to cancel our participation, but the health and safety of our global workforce is our highest concern. We look forward to participating in GDC in the future.”

Sony is not alone in this. Facebook’s Gaming division, which oversees Oculus, is also skipping the show this year. With that said, Oculus will be making announcements around GDC online.

GDC revealed that around ten China-based exhibitors have had to cancel, though some Chinese companies decided to instead send their US staff to attend. For its part, GDC organiser UBM said it’s following US quarantine guidelines, expanding on-site sanitation options and increasing the frequency of facility cleaning.

The coronavirus outbreak has so far caused the cancellation of The Taipei Game Show, originally scheduled for February, and managed to disrupt manufacturing operations in China. The toll of this is predicted to hit Nintendo’s Switch supply as early as April.

GDC 2020 runs March 16-20.

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