Sony announced on Wednesday that the company, as well as its first-party developers, will skip this year’s Penny Arcade Expo East in Boston, scheduled to begin a week from today.
The decision was made, according to a post on Sony’s PlayStation blog, due to “increasing concerns” about the spread of the coronavirus. The virus, while still fairly contained in the United States, has sickened more than 75,000 people around the world, and killed more than 2,000, according to NBC News.
“We felt this was the safest option as the situation is changing daily,” the blog reads. “We are disappointed to cancel our participation in this event, but the health and safety of our global workforce is our highest concern.”
Sony was to be a marquee exhibitor at this year’s PAX East, showing off The Last of Us Part II, Doom Eternal, Final Fantasy VII Remake, and more. Two Sega-owned properties will also be impacted by Sony’s decision. Persona 5 Royal and Space Channel 5 VR: Kinda Funky News Flash were to piggyback off Sony’s booth at the show, and now will appear to have no presence at the event. Neither Atlus or Grounding have separate booths.
While SC5VR will have released by the show opening, P5R’s worldwide launch is March 31.
Tens of thousands of people and plenty of other exhibitors are still expected to attend this year’s event, and TSSZ’s Lou Balzani will be among them. Look for his reports here starting next week.