On the heels of Sony’s and Facebook’s cancelling their Game Developers Conference (GDC) plans, Kojima Productions is now doing the same. Members from the Death Stranding studio will no longer attend the conference next month, due to “increasing concerns” regarding coronavirus. This also means Hideo Kojima’s “Death Stranding Design Philosophy” discussion has been cancelled, as well.
The studio shared the news in the following Twitter post earlier today,
Kojima Productions has made the difficult decision to cancel our participation at the 2020 Game Developers Conference due to increasing concerns related to coronavirus. (1/2)https://t.co/K6FJtq5Tpx
— Kojima Productions (@KojiPro2015_EN) February 24, 2020
A subsequent post on the Kojima Productions’ Twitter account also made note of Kojima’s GDC talk cancellation. Another discussion from the studio’s AI Programmer was set to take place, too, but is no longer on the cards. It was slated for March 16th, while Kojima’s hour-long session would have occurred on March 19th.
As previously mentioned, Kojima Productions now joins other companies in skipping this year’s GDC. Late last week, both Sony and Facebook Gaming called off their appearances, citing coronavirus as the primary reason. This news surfaced just one day after Sony announced it would no longer attend PAX East, which begins later this week on February 27th in Boston, Massachusetts. Since then, Boston’s Mayor has written a statement, urging Sony to reconsider its decision. At the time of writing, the corporation has yet to issue a response.
These precautions are in response to the coronavirus’ continued spread. While the virus remains primarily centered on the mainland of China, it has reached a number of other countries, including the United States and Japan. Though the number of cases in these nations is relatively small, mitigating risk represents the utmost priority for companies such as Facebook, Kojima Productions, and Sony. This especially holds true given that the virus is more likely to spread in large gatherings of people, particularly if those people are traveling in from all parts of the globe.
GDC 2020 will run from March 16th to March 19th.
[Source: Kojima Productions on Twitter]