After a number of major exhibitors announced they would not be participated in this year's Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, organisers have now announced that the event will be postponed.

"After close consultation with our partners in the game development industry and community around the world, we’ve made the difficult decision to postpone the Game Developers Conference this March," reads a statement from the GDC Board

"Having spent the past year preparing for the show with our advisory boards, speakers, exhibitors, and event partners, we’re genuinely upset and disappointed not to be able to host you at this time."

The conference was expected to take place from March 16–20, however numerous publishers including Sony, Blizzard Activision, Amazon, Microsoft, and Epic Games withdrew from the event due to concerns over the COVID-19 virus.

It will now take place "later in the summer."

Those that are registered to attend will be contacted regarding full refunds, while those that organised accommodation through the event will not be charged penalties for cancellation.

Many of the talks and presentations that were to be given at GDC will be made available online for free. In addition to this, the Independent Games Festival and Game Developers Choice Awards will still be held during the intended week, and will be streamed via Twitch.