GDC 2020 Moves Developer Talks To Online Streams After Coronavirus Concerns Cause Cancellation Of Original Event

GDC 2020 Moves Developer Talks To Online Streams After Coronavirus Concerns Cause Cancellation Of Original Event
Credit: GDC

COVID-19, or the Coronavirus, has caused the cancellation of a high multitude of events in the gaming community, and it seems like more and more join in every day. One of these events was the Game Developers Conference, or GDC 2020. We wrote about the postponement at the beginning of the month here, but it seems that the postponement is moving to an all-out cancellation.

Originally set to be postponed until the summer, the GDC organizers are now moving much of the content to online streams. Given that they also never gave a set date for the new schedule and instead just left it at “in the Summer,” it seems that cancellation is the new verdict.

“Thanks to submissions from many of the speakers who had talks planned for GDC 2020, we will be streaming recorded versions of their GDC sessions on the official GDC Twitch channel. Streaming session content will be featured on March 16-20 from 9am to 5pm PT,” the announcement on their GDC page reads, referring to the new format as “virtual talks.”

“In addition to select GDC 2020 talks, virtual awards ceremonies for The Independent Games Festival (IGF) and Game Developers Choice Awards (GDCA) will be streaming at 5pm PT (8pm ET) on Wednesday, March 18.”

It’s definitely not preferable, and there’s more being lost in the cancellation of the event than just the entertainment value of the talks that were going to be given. We recently discussed how the gaming organization Wish was raising funds to help provide relief to the multiple indie gaming developers that don’t have the funding of big names like Blizzard and Nintendo and were taking a huge financial blow from the cancellation. The loss in marketing and fundraising that speaking in an event as big as GDC 2020 can provide was extremely detrimental to these companies, and moving the talks online won’t quite be so helpful.

Still, it’s certainly better than nothing, and fans are happy to see the talks coming online so that the events they were looking forward to will still exist in some way. Too, any indie devs that joined in on this are likely to still get some awareness pointed towards them, so it isn’t a complete loss.

In the meantime, Coronavirus continues to cause cancellation after cancellation, to say nothing of the obviously much more severe effects that it’s having on the world at the moment. Hopefully, we’ll see an end to it all soon and the world can get back to whatever passes as normal nowadays.