Each year, we take a holistic approach to E3, theorizing what we’ll see, what we might see, and what we definitely won’t see at the show. This year, quite a bit of the announcements have been made ahead of time, so rather than front-load the list of things we know we’ll see, we’ve tried to even everything out. As such, here are three games and experiences within each category that we’re sure will, might, and won’t happen.
1) Looking at the series of leaks and announcements, not to mention the hype around the franchise, we know that this will be a Star Wars-heavy E3. Between Disney including their new purchase in Disney Infinity 3.0, Electronic Arts finally giving us details about Battlefront, in addition to a potential movie tie-in to coincide with The Force Awakens, we can make a pretty safe bet that the franchise will be the talk of E3 2015.
2) The next big thing to come out of the big-three (Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo) is how to expand on current consoles with new technology. While Nintendo focuses on games and the toys-to-life platform with amiibo, this E3 will have a huge focus on VR. Oculus showed off its retail version of the Rift, due out early next year, while Sony is sure to bring us more details about Project Morpheus this week. Of course, both platforms will need to show off real, viable games rather than experiences solely to showcase the technology, but we’re hopeful there’s at least one must-have experience on each platform on display.
3) Nintendo tends to surprise people. We’re hoping this year, they continue to follow suit. Last year, we weren’t treated to a huge supply of games, but the way Nintendo showcased what they did have was wonderful. Even without the developer roundtables that usually bookend the first two days of the conference, perhaps the Treehouse @ E3 presentation that follows their Nintendo Digital Event “conference”, will help the Kyoto company pleasantly surprise its fans.
1) Banking on the success of amiibo, we’re pretty confident that Nintendo will announce a series of Pokémon amiibo cards. It would be painstakingly difficult (not to mention wasteful) to create some 700 plastic figures (yes, there are that many Pokémon, if you haven’t been paying attention), but a new set of cards makes a lot more sense for the company. They’ve had massive success with the trading card game in the past, and this could bring Nintendo help breathe new life into their company (and their balance sheet) not to mention reinvigorate the trading card platform.
2) The Last Guardian has quickly become the vapourware of E3 the past five years. Announced at E3 2009, the game has been a hotbed of speculation. We were told last year that the game still exists and has been in development under a new team for quite some time, but Sony has been remarkably hush-hush since then. We’ve been hopeful for the game to return to E3 for the past few years, and we’re not giving up hope just yet.
3) We’re fairly confident that, because the Xbox crew will be pushing their first-party titles in a big way this year, we’ll see Call of Duty and Ubisoft titles showcased at Sony’s conference instead of Microsoft’s. Sony has gone ahead and said that their first-party roster is decidedly thin, though with games like Uncharted and Ratchet & Clank sure to make an appearance, Black Ops III and a new demo of Rainbow Six: Siege might just be enough to liven up Sony’s conference. Otherwise, we’re calling it now: Sony’s show will disappoint.
1) Nintendo, unfortunately, will make good on their promises to not talk about Zelda or their upcoming NX platform at E3 this year. While we’d love them to crack and tell us about the next adventure for Link and company, we’re remarkably pessimistic about it and don’t actually expect to hear anything from Nintendo about Zelda or NX for a long time. Perhaps we’ll be surprised with a new 3DS Zelda game. And no, we don’t mean Hyrule Warriors 3DS.
2) Console redesigns will not be happening this year. With Microsoft just having released an updated terabyte Xbox One console, it doesn’t make sense that they would redesign their hardware just weeks after announcing it. Of course, they could do something bizarre and show off a slim Xbox One with something like 32GB or 64GB of internal storage, but it just doesn’t make sense to fragment their consoles. Sony is more likely of the two companies to unveil a redesign, though they’ve streamlined the manufacturing process of their console over the past year, and with Project Morpheus likely on the horizon, Sony needs gamers to hold onto their cash so they can afford the damn thing.
3) With the exception of little things like a redesigned controller for Xbox One and Project Morpheus for PlayStation 4, this will be a year with virtually no hardware innovation. Even the VR technologies we’re going to see have been on parade for a year or two, and while they’re certainly exciting, they’re the extent of what to expect from hardware. This is a year for everyone to focus on games and experiences on the core console. Microsoft hit the nail on the head last year when Phil Spencer announced that their entire conference would be dedicated to games, and we expect that to be no different this year.
What do you think of our predictions for E3 2015? We’re only a day away from finding out just how accurate we are, but we want to know what you think! Are we way off? Let us know in the comments and on Facebook and Twitter!