March 17, 2021 – After lots of feedback, it was announced this morning Gen Con 2021 moves dates postponing to September. This news has everything to do with the current pandemic and the uncertainty of when things will open up again.
“Today, we’re announcing that we are postponing Gen Con 2021 as originally planned for August 5-8 in Indianapolis and announcing plans for a hybrid slate of concurrent in-person and online experiences, including the rescheduled Indy convention, this September 16-19, 2021. We believe this is the best approach both to meet the many challenges of the moment and to explore possibilities for the future.”
The Gen Con organization made the news known via twitter where they made it known that the decision was in response to “surveys and talking with our partners and health officials.”
Shortly after this announcement, Gen Con posted another tweet pointing out that these new dates coincide with the period of Yom Kippur and they apologized for not better addressing that. They hope to make opportunities to accommodate everyone.
The 2021 board game convention schedule has been constantly changing as organizers put optimistic future plans in place and then continually forced to push everything back given the state of the world. There have been no in person conventions yet this year.
As of the writing of this article, the first one planned for out of the gate is PAX East June 3rd in Boston. It is unclear if the event will keep its date or move. They had announced their full schedule for all PAX events back in December.
Further specifics from Gen Con are below:
By offering a flexible range of opportunities to participate, we hope to safely include the largest number of people in the Gen Con experience this year and adapt to conditions as they are in September: in-person at Gen Con in Indianapolis with capped attendance and a modified format, from home through Gen Con Online events and livestreaming, and at local game stores through Pop-Up Gen Con retail activations.
With the rollout of effective vaccines, we look forward to an end to the COVID-19 pandemic and an eventual return to normal convention conditions, but the timeline is far from certain. In consultation with public health experts and local partners, with community feedback in mind, and with cautious optimism, we are moving forward with planning while maintaining the ability to shift course as needed to meet the requirements of changing conditions.
Convention planning happens on a long timeline, and we appreciate your continued patience as we tread these murky waters. By postponing our dates and expanding our approach, we hope to provide you with the best experience we can this year. With so many pieces in motion, we aren’t yet announcing dates for badge, hotel, and event registration, but we will announce those decisions soon as we advance to the next stages of planning.
Gen Con Indy
“The Best Four Days in Gaming™,” with capped attendance and enhanced health and safety measures.
- Smaller attendance numbers to comply with public health mandates and enable safer-attendance procedures.
- Potential combinations of social distancing, mask wearing, and vaccination requirements as determined by public health guidelines.
Gen Con Online
Concurrent with the convention in Indianapolis, a virtual offering of livestreaming, remote/virtual gaming and events, and community on Discord.
Pop-Up Gen Con
During Gen Con weekend, Pop-Up Gen Con activates participating Friendly Local Game Stores (FLGS).
- FLGS adapt their event to local health and safety conditions and requirements, determining how to structure participation in their community.
- Publishers’ games available to stores for demos, events (where allowed), and purchase.