20 May 2020
Gen Con is one of the largest annual events for tabletop gaming in America, which has been running for over 50 years. Taking place in Indianapolis, the event attracts 70,000 attendees with hundreds of contributors. And, sadly with concerns for health and safety around COVID-19, it, like many others, has made the decision to cancel for this year.
David Hoppe, president of Gen Con, said this in their press release: “Gen Con is the highlight of our year, and we know that it means as much to our attendees, exhibitors, event organizers, and local partners as it does to us, but after carefully monitoring the situation and having ongoing conversations with experts and local government officials, it became clear that the only responsible option was to cancel the convention for this year.”
We’ll always support the decision made for the protection and safety of others, and many reactions surrounding the cancellation have echoed this. However, it is a sign of its popularity the disappointment of its attendees, and it’s sad that circumstances as they are at the moment mean we’re unable to meet up the way we have done before.
On the upside to this, Gen Con has confirmed for next year, being August 5th to 8th 2021. In addition, it is intending to create Gen Con Online, a free-to-attend virtual convention experience in place of the scheduled event on July 30th to August 2nd. Given the newness of the announcement, it's unsurprising there’s no further details of it just yet.
In the Gen Con blog, Peter Adkinson as Co-owner and Chairperson of the Board of Gen Con, summarised the current circumstances as follows “If there is one thing we’ve all learned as RPG players, it’s that you have to tell your own story no matter how your dice land. For me, this is a story about us banding together to keep our party safe until we can gather again to enjoy the fellowship that comes from gaming together. This crisis will not be over quickly, but it will end, and we will all meet around the same table again.
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