It’s that time of year again — the most WONDERFUL time of the year. Gaming Christmas has arrived, and we’re anxious to unwrap some new games. It’s E3 season, ladies and gentlemen. It’s time to play the guessing game and make some predictions about what we’re going to see on the show floor, starting on June 9.
We’re fairly certain about several of our predictions, while others are pretty unlikely. Still, it never hurts to dream, and we’re okay with being way out in left field on some of them. That’s what E3 is after all: a field of gaming dreams. Okay, enough with the metaphors.
John Saavedra (Games Editor), Joe Jasko (Staff Writer), and Robert Bernstein (former games editor/current PR/SEO dude) chime in on what they hope or expect to see at E3 2014.
The Last Guardian is reintroduced for PS4
Well it’s going to happen at some point, isn’t it? So maybe 2014 will finally be the year that The Last Guardian is reintroduced to the gaming world (and if we’re really pushing our luck, maybe it’ll even be released by the year’s end as well). Team Ico’s now-fabled third game was originally announced at E3 in 2009, and it’s been in a hazy state of development ever since. But after many years of no progress updates, various reports of the game going on and off hiatus, and creative director Fumito Ueda becoming a freelance consultant on the project, the hype for this mystical game has become both very weary and almost insurmountable at this point.
More “remastered” or “definitive” games are announced for current gen
Tomb Raider: The Definitive Edition, The Last of Us Remastered, Metro Redux, the list goes on. I think that this year’s E3 will bring us more news of recently released games being rereleased on current-gen platforms, in lieu of other REAL new game announcements. It’s not like I’m not totally stoked about playing The Last of Us again in all its shiny PS4 glory or anything, but I think it could start a bad precedent going forward. So what games do I think are most likely to get the “definitive” treatment in the near future? A Castlevania: Lords of Shadow collection, for starters. I’m on the fence about Grand Theft Auto 5 at the moment, but would bet anything that we see some kind of Assassin’s Creed collection rehash on current-gen: because, you know, pretty soon two games a year just won’t cut it, either.
Nintendo won’t surprise anyone
Nintendo will hold another one of their “Nintendo Direct” conferences during E3, which will be dominated by even more footage of Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. They will probably make some kind of official confirmation of Zelda 2015, but spend most of their time talking about the upcoming Hyrule Warriors instead. Other than that, I think a few cool 3DS games will be announced, but I’d honestly be pretty surprised if Nintendo ended up, well, surprising us with any game announcements (unless the stars align and we get a new Metroid). This is going to be a very important time for Nintendo to build up the future image of the Wii U, especially since their heavy hitters Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. will both have come and gone in 2014.
Microsoft will announce some big indie exclusives
At last year’s E3, Microsoft and Sony had polar opposite agendas when it came to presenting the games that would make up the catalogues of their shiny new consoles. Microsoft chose to focus on the heavy hitters like Call of Duty: Ghosts and Titanfall, while Sony pledged their allegiance to the indie game developer, while offering dozens of titles that would be making their way to PS4 in 2014. Microsoft was quick to combat this by offering up its own list of Xbox One indie games, and I think we’re going to hear about a few new exclusives going forward at this year’s E3. Specifically, I’m predicting The Behemoth will unveil more info on their mysterious Game 4, as well as the announcement that Playdead’s Project 2 will be a Microsoft exclusive.
Rare will finally make a game that we all want them to
This is an E3 prediction that I seem to make every year, and it always winds up slapping me right in the face. I guess I’ll never learn, because I’m still going to make it. We all know that Rare is no longer the magical company behind N64 gems such as GoldenEye, Banjo-Kazooie, Perfect Dark, and Conker’s Bad Fur Day. Now it seems the company is being held captive and forced to churn out new Kinect Sports game after Kinect Sports game. There were a few rumors in 2012 based on uncovered job listings that Rare was working on a new AAA shooter and a revitalization of a classic franchise, so I’ll have my fingers crossed super tight at this E3. But if it ends up being Kinect Sports: Banjo-Kazooie edition, then I might finally just have to bow out gracefully.
HALOOOOOO *cue Gregorian chant*
No Microsoft conference is complete without the annual Halo announcement. This year, we’ll be hearing a lot about the next big Halo game (presumably Halo 5). Where is Master Chief off to next? Well, if that little teaser trailer at E3 2013 has anything to do with it, Chief might be headed to the desert. I’m guessing that means either a new world, Halo ring, or Africa. Also, it’s been ten years since Halo 2 was released on the original Xbox. That means we’re probs going to see some kind of anniversary HD remake for current-gen consoles.
Ubisoft is going to show off Comet and Unity this year at E3 for sure, and I think they might show us why these games are still relevant. Year after year, we get bombarded with this franchise — two games a year — is enough to make your audience start rolling their eyes. Ubisoft will want to show us why these games are still special. Rumor has it that Unity will have 4-player story co-op mode, which is kind of exciting, if it weren’t for that fact that they should’ve thought of this years ago. I’m cynical. Sorry.
Peter Molyneux shows off something “innovative”
I don’t mean any disrespect, but every time veteran developer Peter Molyneux gets up on the E3 stage, he promises us the next step in human evolution. Unfortunately, those last few promises have come attached to Fable games, which are now pretty much dead in the water. Fable: The Journey might be one of the best examples of a series has overstaying its welcome — pure motion control fodder. Of course, Microsoft probably made the guy do it, right? Well, Molyneux has a new studio and a new game in the works; Godus, a new take on his famous godgame, Populous. It will undoubtedly change the way we play forever and ever.
Sledgehammer will show us some Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare gameplay, starring Kevin Spacey
This is a no-brainer. Just in time for that Fall release, Sledgehammer will want to get people pumped up about Advanced Warfare. Hell, I wouldn’t be surprised if Kevin Spacey himself picked up a controller for the demo. In fact, I’m counting on it. I hope they don’t spend fifteen mnutes showing us an underwater mission that really shows us off the fish physics or something like that, though. Instead, Sledgehammer will really intrigue us with something very, very fresh.
Mass Effect: The Revengeance Trilogy
BioWare has been hard at work on the next Mass Effect game. No doubt about it. The great thing about the universe BioWare has created is that it can be completely rewritten. The whole foundation of this space opera RPG is that time has been rewritten countless times and then erased, only to be rewritten once again. Fans, like myself, are dying to do something completely new that has nothing to do with Reapers or Commander Robo/Space Ghost Shepard. We’d love to do some exploring in a standalone story or step into a new trilogy with our heads held high. But make it COMPLETELY new.
Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain
Speaking of revengeance, Metal Gear Solid 5 will have to make an appearance, probably in the Microsoft conference again? Ground Zeroes gave us an itty bitty taste of the action. Either it got players excited for the next big installment in the series, or turned off the core fanbase. So Kojima will want to get people pumped. Expect a whole new gameplay trailer! Hopefully a better look into the supernatural stuff, which will probably be this installment’s strong point, what with Big Boss turning into Hellboy and all.
Batman: Arkham Knight Gameplay
We’re going to see how the Batmobile works. For sure. Rocksteady is banking everything on the fact that people love the Batman Arkham series and are excited to drive the Batmobile into the dark Gotham City streets. They’ll want to see how that’s going to play out on the big E3 conference screen. I personally think it’s going to be very, very cool. I also hope we get a better sense of the story, what Scarecrow’s motivations are, and who the hell the Arkham Knight is!
STAR WARS. *hit it, John Williams!*
EA is going to start showing off their fancy new line of Star Wars games, and we’re either going to hate the ideas or we’re going to flock to them like crazed fanboys/girls. We already know DICE is working on Battlefront, which is a good combo as long as the developer doesn’t Battlefield 4 the multiplayer. I have a feeling Visceral is still in the very early stages of their Star Wars entry, especially since they just hired the creative director for it (the very capable Amy Hennig). But maybe we’ll see a little teaser, like the one DICE showed us for Battlefront last year. As far as BioWare…well, they’ve been awfully quiet about any new Star Wars games. I think what EA meant in their original announcement was that BioWare would continue to work on The Old Republic? Either way, I’d love to see a new BioWare game. All of these studios are very capable of adding awesome entries to this mega-franchise…or not.
Valve reveals that it has been working on current-gen Half-Life all along
Seriously, please let this be true. While at this point it’s pretty far-fetched, it would be nice to finally see that new Half-Life game we’ve been waiting for since Episode 2 back in 2007. This could be the year that Steam finally says, “Yes, we’re working on Half-Life 3, it’s going to be for current-gen, and it’s going to completely change the way you play games forever.” No company has constantly pushed the bar higher as many times as Valve has, and their flagship series might finally see the light of day once again. Wake up, Dr. Freeman.
Red Dead: The Three Amigos (or something cooler)
Rockstar can pretty much rule the world if they want. That’s how much I love this developer, that time and time again, has found a way to make their games fresh. Grand Theft Auto 5 is the best game of the last console generation, and many of Rockstar’s other last-gen games were easy contenders for that title. Red Dead Redemption is one of those games that’s meant to revitalize an entire genre. Sadly, we didn’t really get the Western game uptick we thought. Which actually might be a good thing. The Western shooter/open-world action-adventure genre is still a novelty, and there’s no better time than the present to see a new entry from Rockstar. I’d love to see something that takes inspiration from The Magnificent Seven, personally.
More on PlayStation Now
And, I’m not saying this is necessarily a good thing. Sony’s going to take 15 or so minutes (at least) to update us on PlayStation Now–which is currently in closed beta. We’ve heard from numerous sources around the web that PlayStation Now works pretty well, but I don’t think Sony is going to let “pretty well” stand, and they’re going to attempt a live demo. Oh god, please don’t break for a live demo, guys.
EA Announces a Next Gen Skate 4
No, this isn’t wishful thinking. I know that I predicted the same damn thing last year when I wrote that Skate 4article (for those of you that have been with us for that long), but this year has even more indicators. For one, EA took a shit ton–yes, a shit ton…okay just 50–of their old games offline recently. Yet, somehow, Skate 3wasn’t one of those games. It has been over 4 years since Skate 3released, and it was THE last game of significance for skater boys to release. I’m expecting a teaser trailer, at least, for the next Skate.
A Nintendo Surprise
Sorry, Joe, but I’m predicting just the opposite: Nintendo is going to give us one big BOOM announcement during their press conference Nintendo Direct. I’m thinking it’ll be a big mature release–possibly in the horror genre. Although I’m disappointed with the overall amount of games available for my Wii U, the Nintendo boss is right; one big game can change it all around. Sure, the presser will be dominated by Super Smash Brosand whatever Zeldatitle is coming, but Nintendo is going to throw in some big title. God. I hope so, anyway.
Fallout 4 Xbox One/PS4
Please. Seriously though, please?
Cyberpunk 2077 Also Coming to Xbox One
It has been two years since the initial tease about Cyberpunk 2077,the RPG based on Cyberpunk, and we basically know little to nothing about it. I think Microsoft is going to remind the world it exists, and that it will also be coming to Xbox One, and not just PC. CD Projekt Red currently has their hands full with The Witcher 3,but they’ve undoubtedly put in some time with the development since 2012…right?
Obviously Far Cry 4…I think
(**Updated 6/6/14: We predicted this BEFORE the announcement of Far Cry 4, coincidently enough one day before they actually announced it. Obviously, we’re going to see some Far Cry 4 footage at Ubisoft’s conference)
In my opinion, Ubisoft’s best franchise to date is Far Cry. Far Cry 3was flawless on the last gen, so now it’s time for Far Cry 4 for Xbox One/PS4 in the Himalayas! Ubisoft said that Far Cry 4is currently scheduled for sometime in early 2015, and we haven’t even had a teaser trailer yet. So, my fellow E3-ites, we’ll undoubtedly see Far Cry 4during Ubisoft’s conference.
What would you like at E3 this year? Tell us in the comments!