PlayStation Experience-like event in consideration for Europe.
We recently interviewed Jim Ryan, head of global sales and marketing at SIE and longtime president of the European division of PlayStation, during E3, and after the filmed interview we asked him whether they would focus on Gamescom or Paris this year, after famously opting out of Gamescom in 2015.
"Honestly, we haven't decided yet," replied Ryan when asked, adding that the timing of a certain announcement (presumably Neo) was key to the timing of Sony's European event this year.
Ryan also said that it wouldn't necessarily be at Gamescom or during Paris Games Week, but that other major consumer events in Europe, held in Madrid and Milan, were also in the running. They are also considering an event of their own, much like the PlayStation Experience in North America.
Sony were keen to let it be known that, unlike Microsoft, they weren't ready to show their new and improved console until they actually had something to show. Could that be as soon as Gamescom in August (17-21)?
You also have to consider the fact that PSVR is launching on October 13, and ideally Sony would like to host their annual European press conference ahead of this launch. Paris Games Week is held October 27-31, and it would seem that Madrid Games Week will be replaced by an event in Barcelona this year (October 6-9), while Milan Games Week is held one week later (October 14-16).
There are a lot of things to consider here and time is ticking. For years Sony hosted a massive press conference on the eve of Gamescom in Cologne, but last year they opted out (their presence only catering to German consumers and press) as E3 and Gamescom were a mere 8 weeks apart.
Last year they hosted a smaller press conference during Paris Games Week, but given the importance of a potential Neo reveal and lead-in to the PSVR launch, a comeback for the Sony press conference at Gamescom would seem likely if Neo is ready to be shown in August.