Valve has announced that the Summer Steam Game Festival, originally scheduled for June 9th, has been delayed a week and will now run from June 16th to the 22nd.
The festival was originally planned to take place on what would have been the week of the now-cancelled E3, and has promised to feature demos from upcoming games, and the opportunity to connect with the game’s developers during the event.
Valve did not specify why the event has been postponed, but it comes alongside a series of games industry companies (such as Sony Interactive Entertainment, Activision, Epic Games, and Electronic Arts) postponing their events and announcements out of respect for the Black Lives Matter protests.
Many of these companies directly referenced the protests and their support for them. Sony recently postponed the Playstation 5 reveal event out of respect,
— PlayStation (@PlayStation) June 1, 2020
Sony Interactive Entertainment also issued a statement supporting the protests, saying on Twitter: “We denounce system racism and violence against the Black community. We will continue to work toward a future marked by empathy and inclusion and stand with our Black creators, players, employees, families, and friends. #BlackLivesMatter”
Valve is yet to make a statement on the subject.
Gamesindustry.biz spoke to some of the developers involved in the festival, who supported the postponement. One source said to GI.biz: “This is an incredibly late, albeit correct call by Valve.”
“Developers and publishers I work with have been going back and forth for days trying to salvage a situation that forced them to choose between having a Steam demo up or having the top media outlets showcase their work. For most smaller games, you need both to succeed, not one or the other.”