Yesterday, we wrote about ongoing discussions in the EVE Online community about the safety and wisdom in attending EVE Fanfest, then set to run April 2nd through 4th in Reykjavik, Iceland. We’ve seen gaming companies backing out of major gaming events like PAX East and GDC left and right, and especially in China, esports events have been canceled and postponed, all because of fears of inadvertently exacerbating the spread of the novel coronavirus.
But this might mark the first big western event canceled over the not-yet-a-pandemic: CCP Games has just canceled EVE Fanfest 2020. Here’s the whole statement.
“In light of the recent and ongoing global developments surrounding the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, we have taken the decision to cancel this year’s Fanfest event in Reykjavik, Iceland.
It is with a heavy heart that we make this decision, and we know this news will be disappointing to our wonderful community, but we feel absolutely compelled to follow the most responsible course of action and prioritize the safety and well-being of our attendees, our staff and of course the general Icelandic public.
We realize that the situation a month from now could be very different, but the way events are developing both globally and in Iceland’s neighboring countries, an in-depth and serious review has made it clear that this is a necessary step to take.
We wanted to get this information to you as swiftly as possible in order to allow you to make the necessary changes to any travel or accommodation arrangements that you may have made. We will be providing further details over the course of the next few weeks, so please keep an eye on all EVE Online social media channels for these updates.”
The news comes just an hour after the first case of the virus was confirmed in Iceland.
As I'm finding out with GDC, most people's travel insurance won't cover Event Cancellation as a valid reason. Anyone who's already booked flights and accommodation is probably going to still show up in Iceland unless the flights themselves get cancelled.
— Brendan Drain (@nyphur) February 28, 2020
In other coronavirus news today – and yeah, this has become a thing – League of Legends pro players will apparently be going through two weeks of quarantine and playing their matches online when the pro league resumes in China.
More on the impact of the virus on gaming: