• GDC organizers are set to host a "hybrid" event in 2021
  • A physical event will take place in San Francisco and a "robust virtual offering" for those with travel restrictions
  • GDC 2021 is scheduled on July 19 until July 23, 2021, at the Moscone Center in San Francisco
  • This year's Conference was postponed in February due to the pandemic caused by COVID-19

With this year's Game Developers Conference (GDC) officially postponed due to the pandemic caused by COVID-19 and the alarming rise of cases in the United States, organizers of the GDC are now planning to bounce back with a bigger event in 2021.

GDC 2020 was previously scheduled to take place between March 16th and 20th but was halted after convening with its partners in the gaming industry. The move to “host a GDC event later in the summer” came in the wake of several high-profile gatherings such as the MWC, Facebook's F8 and the Geneva Motor Show moving their respective schedules on later dates because of the virus, said Engadget.

To make up for lost time, organizers have concocted a unique plan for next year's GDC. According to Gamasutra, GDC 2021 will be held as a “hybrid” event. What this means is that it will have both an in-person gathering at the Moscone Center in San Francisco and a “robust virtual offering” for those who cannot make it due to travel restrictions.

Bill Gates in a previous version of GDC in San Jose
Bill Gates in a previous version of GDC in San Jose REUTERS/Jeff Christensen

“Organizers are excited to offer a choice of attendance options and possibilities for GDC going forward and the 2021 event will be an inaugural roll-out of this format,” said Gamasutra.

A set of virtual GDC Master Classes will also be launched late this year leading to the grand GDC 2021 stage on July 19 until July 23, 2021. The classes will be day-long and multi-day “virtual workshops” that will delve deeper into game development. Gamasutra will likewise host streaming talks later this year and will feature some of the industry's leading names.

Prior to the main event, a “GDC Community Celebration” will happen on March 1 through March 5, 2021. The week-long event will stream various lectures, Q&A sessions, talks and interactive content that helped shape the gaming zone of the past year.

It's quite normal for the likes of GDC to plan something spectacular for its fans and exhibitors next year, but organizers can only do so much as the negative effects of COVID-19 could still pose as an obstacle, especially for an in-person event GDC has in store for next year. Screen Rant said GDC organizers have a “built-in safety net” to make its virtual showcase expand should things go sideways for the physical gathering.