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GDC 2020 Rescheduled to August

  • Renamed as GDC Summer.
  • New starting date is August 4th.
  • Is that date far out enough for people to schedule it in?

Even before the global coronavirus situation was officially labeled a pandemic, it was doing a number on many early 2020 events. Whether it was widespread cancelation of esport events or big conventions being affected adversely, whether adjusting their protocols such as during PAX East or making the hard decision to cancel such as E3 has done, the virus has forced a response across the industry. In the case of GDC 2020, after several big name withdrawals from the convention during February, the decision was ultimately made to postpone until a later time. 

For those who were curious just when that would be, event organizers have issued a press release via the Associated Press that confirms the event will now be moved to August 4th and run through August 6th. It will also still take place that the Moscone Center in San Francisco, despite projections that California is on track to be one of the hardest-hit states by the Coronavirus in the months going forward at this time.

You can read the press release in full here, but you’ll find the key takeaways below:

Informa Tech, organizer of the Game Developers Conference® (GDC), has announced GDC Summer, a three-day celebration of the art, craft and business of game development, to be held from August 4-6 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. GDC Summer will be a unique Game Developers Conference experience but will retain the same high level of expert-led talks as the traditional GDC, along with a freestyle two-day expo show floor from August 5-6.

GDC Summer will give the game development community a chance to come together in a way that hasn’t currently been possible due to COVID-19. Safety remains the GDC organizers’ paramount concern and the GDC team will continue to monitor the latest information from health officials to ensure a safe and compelling event for everyone at GDC Summer, GDC 2021 and beyond. Full details for GDC Summer can be viewed on the official GDC website.

While it’s good to see that the event has been rescheduled, the decision to keep it in San Francisco this year does raise some cause for concern. Right now the hardest hit states in the pandemic are New York, Washington, and California and the projections are looking like things are going to keep climbing for the next few months. 

Even when the infection rate stables out, it won’t change that these three states still carry the highest infected numbers and California in particular is estimated to feel it the worst by some estimates over the next few weeks. Will the situation have stabled out enough to safely have a convention in California? Or will we see companies and attendees alike playing it safe and leaving it a ghost town when it rolls around in August? There’s no doubt the organizers are watching things closely, and rest assured we will be too.