Sony will no longer be attending PAX East 2020 due to the COVID-19 virus, known by most as the novel coronavirus. The company’s booth initially offered a playable demo of some of the year’s most highly-anticipated games, including DOOM: Eternal, Final Fantasy VII Remake and The Last of Us Part II.

Announcing the news on its PlayStation blog, Sony wrote, “Today, Sony Interactive Entertainment made the decision to cancel its participation at PAX East in Boston this year due to increasing concerns related to COVID-19 (also known as “novel coronavirus”). We felt this was the safest option as the situation is changing daily. We are disappointed to cancel our participation in this event, but the health and safety of our global workforce is our highest concern.”

Sony was booked to attend all four days of the gaming conference, scheduled for February 27 to March 1 in Boston, Massachusetts. The company’s decision could’ve possibly been fueled by the recent news of a local resident testing positive for the COVID-19 virus earlier this February, after he returned from a trip to Wuhan, China.

PAX East organizers released a statement in regards to Sony’s decision, reassuring attendees and other exhibitors that the convention will continue as planned and that they are doing their utmost best to keep the event virus-free:

“PAX East 2020 will take place as scheduled with enhanced cleaning and sanitization across the show, including adhering to the recommendations set forth in the U.S. EPA’s Emerging Pathogen Policy regarding cleaning disinfectants effective against the COVID-19 virus. We are working closely with the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center and following local, state and federal public health guidelines, including those issued by the CDC.

While we are saddened that Sony will no longer have a presence at PAX East 2020, we look forward to welcoming our friends at Sony to future PAX events and are focused on making PAX East 2020 a successful and enjoyable event for all attendees and exhibitors.”

Elsewhere in gaming, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s “Fighter Pass” Vol. 2 will be the game’s last DLC.

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