Summer Game Fest Insight with Geoff Keighley

Summer Game Fest Insight with Geoff Keighley
| June 2, 2022

The 2022 summer of games is on, and that means it’s time for Summer Game Fest and a slew of other video game showcases. June is always a busy month for gaming, as it was the month of E3 in past years, but with E3 taking a break for an undisclosed amount of time, the games’ industry continues to thrive on its own. 

Geoff Keighley went live on Twitter this past Sunday, taking questions from followers and answering all things Summer Game Fest. Keighley seemed to focus on keeping expectations low, reminding gamers that this is not E3. During the hour-long conversation, CGMagazine’s Dayna Eileen popped in to talk with the SGF founder and Markham native, and Keighley had plenty to say about what he is personally looking forward to and announces that media will be attending Summer Game Fest live and in-person.

Before opening the floor to questions, Keighley began with a short speech, describing what’s to come from this year’s Summer Game Fest, and how the summer of games is changing:

Summer Game Fest Insight With Geoff Keighley 2

Geoff Keighley: I wanted to stop by today to tell you guys a little bit about what’s going on for all things summer game fest as we get ready for our big live show on Thursday, June 9th.  It’s going to be a fun week, because he probably saw last week that Sony announced that there will be a PlayStation State of Play happening on Thursday, June 2nd, which will kick off the month in a big way. 

Then it will lead into our big Summer Game Fest live show on Thursday, June 9th. There are some other events that will also be happening, the Netflix [Geeked Week] event on Friday, the Tribeca Game Showcase and then the big Xbox & Bethesda Game Showcase on Sunday, June 12th.

First thing I will say is that, yes, there’s more to be announced. In this new digital age, sometimes things can pop up a lot quicker than you’d expect. There will even be some things that we’ll announce in the show on the 9th. So there’ll be things that will not necessarily be announced weeks in advance. If you sign up at www.summergamefest.com, you’ll be able to get our calendar, alerts, even text alerts as events get announced. Don’t worry, you’re not going to miss anything.

This is a little bit of a lighter year, honestly, for game releases, just based on how things are panning out with the remnants of COVID and lots of other things going on. I think you’ll see some big first party events, and you’ll see our Summer Game Fest event that will have a lot of third parties involved. More than 30 partners will be involved in our Summer Info Show that we’ll be sharing in the coming days. There will be some other great events, but I just think if you’re expecting 15 different press events, don’t set your expectations for that.

We’re opening up for co-streaming, if you’re interested in sharing it with your audiences. Feel free to do so on Twitch and YouTube and Facebook. There will also be a cool Twitch drop that will be announced this coming week, something cool that your viewers will get as a benefit for watching the show, which will tie into one of the games that we’ll be showcasing at Summer Game Fest. 

One thing that I’d remind myself of, last year, Elden Ring was really big. But remember, Elden Ring was already an announced game. People knew it was coming. They just hadn’t seen anything on it in a couple of years, and we showed the first gameplay trailer. I think it was a really high bar for us last year, the first gameplay trailer for Elden Ring

I think people fixate on brand-new, fresh game announcements—and we definitely have some of those in the show—but there’s lots of other great games where we’re just going to give people meaningful updates on new content coming to them and first looks, things like that. We’ve got a pretty special show coming together for you. We’re really excited about it.

So with that said, if you’ve got a request, I will bring you up to the floor, and we’ll see what you have to say on this fine Sunday. 

Geoff Keighley: Hi, there. How are we doing? Where are you calling in from?

Dayna Eileen: I’m actually in Canada. I’m the Executive Editor for CGMagazine, I’m very excited to be here.

Geoff Keighley: Oh, fantastic. CGMagazine. Whereabouts in Canada?

Dayna Eileen: We’re in the Niagara region, but it started in Toronto.

Geoff Keighley: Fantastic. Yeah, I grew up just north of Toronto in a town named Markham. That’s where it all began for me. I think my first E3 I flew down from Toronto to visit Ew, which is kind of crazy. So that’s awesome. Are you coming to LA for any of the events?

Dayna Eileen: We are actually yes, we are flying in on the 9th.

Geoff Keighley: That’s cool. We haven’t talked very publicly about this because we don’t want things to get out of control. But yeah, we are going to have some cool in-person elements for the media in Los Angeles surrounding Summer Game Fest this year. And again, it’s not like E3 and not the scale of that. So that’s why we’ve been super careful and it’s not public. Right like that. 

But yeah, we are looking forward to having some hands on some really awesome games and having people—for the first time in a couple of years—travel to an event and get to play some games. We’re just starting to do this, and trying to do it in a cautious way. I’m really excited. We have an amazing lineup of games that we’re gonna get to play in person and see people again, so I hope COVID behaves over the next few weeks. 

But that’s awesome. I’m glad you’re glad you’re coming down.

Dayna Eileen: We’re very excited. Now, my question for you is, I’ve been listening and you’re kind of down playing Summer Game Fest, just to keep expectations level. Are there any little hints that you can give us about something you’re personally excited for over Summer Game Fest? I know, you can’t lay it all out. 

Geoff Keighley: I just always down hype. I see even now, these fake lists of what’s going to be in the State of Play or Xbox. Everyone’s like, “here’s the 38 games they’re going to announce”. Someone a few weeks ago said that every Xbox first party studio is going to be on stage with the gameplay demo or something. Maybe that’s true. I don’t really know. But I think you’ve got to be mindful of the expectations. We all know that people get super hyped. And as long as a couple of those things come through, they’re happy. 

For me, there are things I’m personally really excited about. I grew up playing games. And I think some classic games and franchises are coming back, which I’m really, really excited to show people. Again, those are not actually the biggest games in the world, but things personally to me.

Dayna Eileen: They don’t have to be big for them to be awesome.

Summer Game Fest Insight With Geoff Keighley

Geoff Keighley: We love to do a really eclectic showcase of stuff, and we’ll have the biggest franchises in the world on stage. But then we’ll also have small little independent games as well. We really like to try and be unique with how we program the show. 

There’s definitely some stuff that’s personally exciting for me. There are some assets that we’re showing, which I think are just blown away, awesome. I’m really excited to show people those and then some gameplay sequences. It’s a very different show than last year. 

The 30 or 40 games that we’re showing, I think there’s definitely some stuff that will get people hyped. Some of it will be expected, and other things hopefully will be a surprise if everything holds. That’s the other thing, we’re 10 days out. I have no idea what’s going to happen in the next week or two. 

Dayna Eileen: Anything can go wrong, it will go wrong, right? 

Geoff Keighley: That’s what I mean. It’s just one of those things where we have to brace—literally—until like, 10:59, when the show goes live to sort of see what’s on the internet and where. I’m excited about it. I’m really excited about the whole season, the fact that it starts with the [PlayStation] State of Play this Thursday I’m really excited about as well. It’s cool that that’s going to kick off the month. Hopefully Sony will have a good show for us with some cool stuff. I’m sure there’ll be other events announced out of nowhere and it’s one of those things that is different from a traditional E3.

Dayna Eileen: It’s definitely going to be a crazy couple of weeks for game journalism. That’s for sure.

Geoff Keighley: Hopefully you guys will get some good articles.That’s the other thing, some of the hands-on stuff we’re doing. For media, there’s going to be things to cover and things to play. That’s something we’ve really missed through the pandemic, being able to go hands on. I know sometimes there are digital demos—it’s just not the same. 

We’re starting this path of bringing things back to normal. No, we’re not doing it with 50,000 people in some huge convention hall, but who knows where it’s going to go in the future. But yeah, this year, it’s about just sort of starting in whatever way we can. So glad. Well, we’ll have to look forward to saying hello to you in person, hopefully.

Dayna Eileen: Absolutely. That would be amazing. 

Geoff Keighley: Thanks, Dayna. Have a safe flight down. Thank you so much. 

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