In a wide-ranging interview, SIE Worldwide Studios Chairman Shawn Layden reveals why PlayStation is skipping E3 2019.
Following Sony’s surprising decision to pull out of E3 2019, Shawn Layden has revealed more about the move, and why the event needs to take a fan-oriented approach if it’s to stay relevant.
Speaking to CNET, Layden says that due to changing nature of retail, marketing, and the impact of the internet, E3 no longer serves its original purpose of connecting game publishers to retailers and journalists.
“Now we have an event in February called Destination PlayStation, where we bring all retailers and third-party partners to come hear the story for the year,” Layden says. “They’re making purchasing discussions in February. June, now, is just too late to have a Christmas holiday discussion with retailers.”
Sony’s focus on fewer games also means that the company is increasingly marching to the beat of its own drum, and Layden believes that E3 needs to adapt into an event more akin to Comic-Com.
“We are progressing the conversation about, how do we transform E3 to be more relevant? Can E3 transition more into a fan festival of gaming, where we don’t gather there to drop the new bomb? Can’t it just be a celebration of games and have panels where we bring game developers closer to fans?” he says.
Asked if the event needs to be more like Comic-Con, Layden answers by saying simply, “Yes, that’s probably the trajectory it needs to go to maintain relevance.”
The full interview is well worth reading, and also examines Sony’s approach to developing PlayStation exclusives, and the company’s position on the future of video game streaming.