We’ve covered quite a lot of E3 2012 already, and the show hasn’t even started yet. A few weeks ago, we asked our team of crack reporters what they were most excited to see from the show floor. We also asked them for their predictions (no matter how wild) about what the big three have in store for us starting on Monday.
While we’re revving up for oodles (yes, I said oodles) of news, previews and interviews, here’s an early taste at what we’re looking forward to from LA.
Michael Futter, Managing Edtior
I’m extremely excited to get my hands on XCOM: Enemy Unknown. I loved what I saw of the game at PAX East, and it looks like one of the most compelling strategy/tactics experiences we’ve seen on consoles in quite awhile. After viewing the new Tomb Raider trailer, I was reminded how impressive it looked during last year’s show. The time has seemingly done it some good, and it’s almost painful that we have to wait until March to play the final version.
The improvements featured in Assassin’s Creed III are already getting me very excited. Connor’s more fluid movement, along with more organic climbing has the gears turning as to how creative I can be in my assassinations. The new weapons, setting and the confoundingly enthralling story are all things that make me excited for what Ubisoft has in store.
Borderlands 2 remains one of my most anticipated games of the year. I absolutely loved the first one, and what I’ve played of the sequel so far is absolutely impressive. Another sequel on my radar is Transformers: Fall of Cybertron. I’m a huge nerd for the franchise, and the inclusion of the Dinobots puts a giant geeky smily on my face.
As for predictions, until proven wrong, I stand by my assertion that Microsoft will be announcing their new console for fall 2013. I’m not sure if Sony will tip their hand yet, as they’ve been more cautious lately. The Vita announcement was predicated on the 3DS’ price at the time. More importantly, if they wait until E3 2013 to announce for the fall, they cut off Microsoft’s head start and have the chance to wait and see pricing. Sony doesn’t want to be late to market again and they definitely don’t want to be the most expensive again.
Stephanie Gutowski, Features Editor
I’m most excited for Star Wars 1313, Tomb Raider, and whatever BioWare’s got in store, assuming there’s… something in store. I’m also excited for the imaginary Mirror’s Edge 2 trailer I’m going to see in my head.
I predict that I will spend the whole time longing for a Fallout 4 announcement, but will not hear one. I also predict and don’t predict that we’ll hear anything about Dragon Age 3.
Sam Naylor, UK Editor
I’m a sucker for whatever Valve puts out, so more of CS:GO and DOTA 2 is what I’ll most likely be looking for from the coverage online. As for predictions- I’m sure we’ll see a lot Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, as always, and some stupid new innovation from Nintendo. At this point the best thing for Nintendo to do to win me back to their side is to announce that the Wii U is a proper next gen console, not just on a par with current gen, and that it will have a normal, boring controller and a proper online environment. It’s just basic stuff and Nintendo haven’t shown that they are a modern gaming company in recent years. Their fanbase fell away from them with the Wii, and the motion control fad is probably coming to an end by now. I just hope they prove they can still compete in the same market.
Brandon Fenty, Staff Writer
One of the biggest things I’m excited to see for this year at E3 is new hardware. Of course, the Wii U is already announced, but Microsoft and Sony have been quietly working away in their corners, with no real news on either’s next-generation hardware except that it’s coming. Sony was definitely hurt by their late entry into the current generation of consoles, so there’s a good chance they’ll want to get the jump on Microsoft this time around.
Assassin’s Creed is a series I’ve followed for quite some time now, and with the recently revealed information on the latest in the series, I’m excited to see more. Ubisoft will surely have some more info for us at E3 this year, so definitely looking forward to new trailers and possibly even a hands-on demo. The game is looking to be the smoothest yet in the series, and the setting of the revolutionary war times is one that looks awesome, especially for an American History buff like me.
Finally, Halo 4 is a big one. We’ve already seen a lot about the title, but as this first in the series to not be developed by Bungie, it’ll be interesting to see what’s in store for Microsoft’s iconic series. There’s been news about a more COD-like experience (something for which I am NOT excited), but hopefully there will be more news about the game and we’ll be able to see what they’ve been up to at 343 Industries.
My prediction: Microsoft will be revealing a new mobile gaming handheld. They’ve already got the Windows Phone 7 software, but that’s targeted more towards the casual market. While Sony’s PS Vita has had less than stellar performance, the Xbox has a much better social experience in their Xbox Live service. Being able to take that gaming anywhere would be a big deal, and the time is ripe for a solid handheld entry. While Microsoft has stated already that they won’t be announcing a new Xbox this year, but with the release of Windows 8 and its integration of all devices under one interface, it would make sense to include a gaming device in there.
Jonathon Dornbush, Staff Writer
Because of the push of so many games to 2013, I thought this year’s E3 might not hold the same allure as previous years. But the more I think about the console exclusives for the Big 3 there are a few games I can’t wait to get my hands on. If Pikmin 3 is real and playable, I would love to spend some time again with Olimar after two installments in one of my favorite franchises of the last generation. The Wii U tablet seems like an ideal tool to use during a Pikmin title, and should really allow for some great multitasking.
I’m also pumped for PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale. I’m not a big fighting game fan but Super Smash Bros. has always spoken to me, so to see Sony franchises duking it out is as great an announcement as I could have hoped. I expect to see some more roster announcements, which should give us an idea of the expanse of IPs that Sony is trying to cover with the title. On the Sony front I’m also looking forward to whatever Quantic Dream may be showing off, but those titles don’t likely lend themselves too well to a showfloor.
Every year I hope but don’t really expect a Kingdom Hearts 3 announcement, and I know I’m not alone in that. I’m done with the side stories and want something that finds a balance between what the first two games did so well and returns to those core mechanics instead of some of the weird paths the series has traveled. For real predictions, I think Microsoft will have a conference disappointingly centered on expanding the 360 as a media hub and less about the games. I also predict we’ll learn the fate of The Last Guardian either by its presence or non-presence, meaning if it doesn’t show it’s likely canned, as disappointing as that may be.