General Manager for Xbox Games Marketing, Aaron Greenberg announces that Microsoft will not hold a press briefing at gamescom this year and instead reveals Xbox FanFest 2016.

With E3 2016 largely in the rear view mirror, the next major video game convention is quickly approaching as companies prepare to head to Germany for gamescom in August. Already major companies have confirmed to be in attendance including Blizzard Entertainment, Ubisoft, Nintendo, and many more, ensuring that the trade event this year will be jam-packed with games. Surprisingly, the typically active Microsoft has recently announced that it’s not going to have quite the presence that it normally does.

In a new post on the Xbox Wire, Xbox Games Marketing General Manager, Aaron Greenburg, confirmed that Microsoft isn’t planning to hold a media briefing this year at the annual event. Instead, the company is putting together what it is calling Xbox FanFest 2016, which is a more intimate experience, and probably similar to what EA did at E3 this year, for fans across Europe and worldwide. While no additional details were shared, more information regarding the event has been promised soon.

xbox gamescom 2016

For fans expecting to see Microsoft at gamescom, the company is still planning to have a presence at the show and is setting up shop in a new location in Hall 8 of the Koelnmesse near the north entrance. Many Xbox games shown off at E3 will be available to play including Halo Wars 2, Forza Horizon 3, ReCore, Sea of Theives, and a number of [email protected] titles like We Happy Few and Cuphead.

The news is somewhat surprising as gamescom has traditionally been pretty busy for Microsoft. Last year alone, the stage was given to Quantum Break, Scalebound, and Crackdown 3, three major first party titles for the Xbox One, that had been bumped from the E3 press conference due to lack of time. This year, however, has already seen the successful launch of Quantum Break earlier in April, while Scalebound was given ample stage time at E3 to show off a massive co-op boss battle and Crackdown 3 went largely under the radar only announcing a delay into 2017.

Microsoft may not be the only major company to bypass gamescom, as just last week, speculation started to swirl that Sony wouldn’t be in attendance, as its name was left off of an exhibitor’s list, something that generally gives attendees and idea of who will be showcasing items at the show. While Sony has yet to make an official comment on its status for the show in August, this move would mirror what happened last year, as the company opted to instead attend and showcase upcoming games at the Paris Games Show.

Are you surprised by the news that Microsoft isn’t going to hold a traditional press conference this year at gamescom? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

gamescom 2016 kicks off on August 17 in Cologne, Germany.

Source: Xbox Wire