E3 2011 Predictions
The staff lends their best guesses for what the upcoming show has to offer excited gamers.
JD Lewis' Predictions
For me, E3 is the most exciting time of the year. This is the time where the biggest games of the year are shown and the biggest secrets are unveiled. This year promises to be no exception with big games coming all across the board, and new consoles ready to be shown. So what do I expect from E3 this year? Well let's start with the big three.
I naturally get the most excited for Nintendo's E3 showing and this year seems to be no exception. Nintendo is planning to show their brand new console, Project Cafe, to the world. New consoles are always welcome at E3 and generate a lot of hype, so I'm particularly excited for it. The best part is, it's promising to have HD visuals and a brand new controller that is all but confirmed to have a touch screen and camera built into it. The possibilities are astounding and I can not wait to see how this will be implemented. Part of the Nintendo magic is the mystery behind their innovations and Cafe is no different.
Aside from this new hardware, we will definitely see new software. I expect to see a lot from Zelda, however I think they will be pushing Skyward Sword on Wii and not Cafe. I just feel like they want it to be the swan song for Wii. However, with this being the year of Zelda's 25th anniversary, I expect some surprises, maybe in the form of a 3D remake of A Link to the Past. I also feel like Retro Studios will announce their next project, which I predict to be Metroid Dread, because they promised a title everyone wanted, and after the controversial Metroid: Other M, I can imagine Nintendo wanting Retro to get their hands back on the series. Whether this title is on 3DS or Wii, or even Cafe is irrelevant to me, but if true I'd like to see this on Cafe. Let me not get ahead of myself, for it may not be Metroid at all. Perhaps Retro will take up the Star Fox brand next. If you ask me, it would seem like a perfect fit for Retro and after doing justice to both Metroid and Donkey Kong, I wouldn't be surprised.
Now while those are the ones I'm particularly excited for, I also expect to see Pikmin 3 announced and some sort of Pikmin spin off for 3DS. Speaking of the 3DS, I know that Kid Icarus and Super Mario 3D will have a strong presence at the show. I feel that Nintendo will address the strong, yet slow start for the handheld and promise a lot of support going forward, perhaps with a new IP. To wrap up my Nintendo predictions, I think that we may very well get a sneak peek of the next Super Smash Brothers for Cafe. I do think it's the most farfetched of my predictions, but it would be a great game to generate hype.
Microsoft this year will show a mixture of things. I believe the big things will involve increased Live support via additional features. I believe that they will integrate Skype support with Kinect or something along those lines, and possibly even add YouTube or a GameFly on demand rental service. I think the rumors of a new Xbox 360 with a built in Kinect is true, and will be shown in an attempt to again refresh the 360 market.
As far as software I think we will see the expected games, like Gears of War 3, Modern Warfare 3 or Battlefield 3, and Bungie's next project. Lots of people feel that Halo will be back in some form, and I don't think thats too much of a stretch. Hopefully Microsoft will show something about Mass Effect 3 at the show, for personal reasons mostly. Overall, I'm expecting a solid showing, but nothing mind blowing, somewhat like last year.
Finally is Sony. I believe that they have the most to prove at this conference. Of course Sony will probably start by apologizing for the recent troubles with PSN being down. Moving forward though, I believe they will try again to convince users that the PS Move is still valid by showing new software that will take advantage of it. Perhaps we will see the Sorcery game, or additional support for their holiday releases. Of course I believe their main focus will be the NGP and its specs. I truly think they will try to take advantage of the Nintendo 3DS' slow start and try to come out of the gate swinging. Games like Uncharted: Golden Abyss will make a huge presence, mainly because I feel like it is the best example of the hardware. Along with Golden Abyss, we will definitely see a push for Uncharted 3, Ratchet and Clank: All for One, and maybe even games like Sly 4 and Last Guardian. My stretch for Sony is that there will be a mention of Kingdom Hearts 3. It only seems logical, since Square Enix needs all they can get at the moment.
Just based on all of that, all I can say is that E3 will be a beast this year. With games like Mass Effect 3, Street Fighter x Tekken, Zelda: Skyward Sword, Batman: Arkham City, Gears of War 3, and Uncharted 3 on the horizon, there's no way gamers aren't excited for this. Will there be any more surprises? Only time will tell.