It's been a tough couple of years for the Electronic Entertainment Expo, which was canceled entirely in 2020 and 2022, though coming back for a smaller digital only event in 2021. Still, without the big and bombastic summer event, companies and studios have had to find alternative ways to showcase upcoming games and content. Typically, companies like Sony, Nintendo, Xbox, and Ubisoft have opted to hold their own events, allowing them the entire spotlight instead of having to share it with other announcements.
However, the absence of E3 has also made the other existing annual shows more important. The likes of Tokyo Game Show, Game Awards, and Gamescom have becoming focal points for fans looking to get new information and see upcoming games in action. Gamescom, featuring Summer Games Fest host Geoff Keighley during Opening Night, is now right around the corner and many studios have already begun teasing what they'll be showing, including Microsoft.
After taking the past few years off, Microsoft announced that it plans to return to the show floor in Cologne, Germany. The company is planning content for people at the show through a huge booth at Gamescom, as well as a day of livestreamed content for those who can't be in attendance. Starting on Thursday, August 25 at 8am ET, the livestream will showcase developer interviews and gameplay from numerous upcoming games like Pentiment, Minecraft Legends, A Plague Tale: Requiem, and more.
For those in attendance at Gamescom from August 25 - 28, the Xbox Booth will have 36 stations of content to check out with a mixture of first and third party titles. Fans will also get a chance to go hands on with the new Xbox App on the latest 2022 Samsung Smart TV along with other photo opportunities with displays set up to mimic events in games like walking the plank of Sea of Thieves, fighting Piglins, from Minecraft Legends, and even taking a selfie with VASCO, a robot companion from Starfield. FanFest, an after hours event, is also making its return with meet and greets and more.
In addition to Xbox, there have already been a lot of Gamescom related announcements. While Sony and Nintendo won't be attending Gamescom this year, Ubisoft announced in June that it'll be at the show, likely bringing Skull and Bones prior to its launch, though Assassin's Creed likely won't be included with a September showcase happening a few weeks later. Sonic Frontiers is also confirmed to be at the show as well as Krafton to showcase upcoming horror game Callisto Protocol as well as a new IP from the team behind Subnautica.
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