E3 2010 Predictions

With E3 2010 set to kick off next week, we thought it was fine time at the First Hour to make some predictions!  Most of these might be more wishful thinking than realistic expectations, but this is the only time of year where gamers are actually surprised, so we're going to make the most of it.

You'll find predictions from Greg, Grant, Steve, Paul E., Paul A, Ian, Nate, and Mike in Omaha below on topics ranging from Natal to Sega releasing another console and everything in between.  Predictions are guaranteed to be totally inaccurate, but we had fun putting them together and imaging the possibilities.

We hope to sum up our thoughts about the conferences and games announced next week every few days, but we'll definitely have a recap when it's over determining who was the most accurate.  The First Hour doesn't really do news that often, but we'll try not to interrupt our daily reviews and editorials that much.  Either way, we've got a whole slew of content queued up.



Legend of Zelda Mysterious wii artOur main talking points were the 3DS, new Zelda, and Wii 2, here are our predictions on what Nintendo will do:

Most of us agree that the 3DS will still be called the 3DS when it's finally released, but our prices ranged from $180 (Nate) to $250 (Greg) with everyone else landing near $200.  I personally hope Nate is right.  Only Greg and Nate committed to dates though, with Greg pointing to November and Nate in February.  Here I hope I'm right!  There wasn't a lot of talk on games, but Nate liked New Super Mario Bros. 3D, and new entries for Star Fox and F-Zero.

When the new Wii Zelda was brought up, we all kind of nodded at the idea that it would require Wii Motion Plus with a pack-in bunble likely.  Mike thought this could do wonders for the hookshot and possibly even a lasso while riding Epona, but it just as well could be something totally unexpected that will drive Zelda timeline fanboys mad.  Paul E. and Nate thought it would borrow from a few of the games in Wii Sports Resort like the sword fighting and archery, but Nate also thought they might shake the series up a bit.

Greg thinks that Zelda will also take advantage of the Vitality Sensor, Nintendo's next peripheral most of us know nothing about, and use it during combat.  When your heart rate is raised, combat will slow down like you're getting an andrenaline boost.  Paul E. thinks the Vitality Sensor might just be used as a bonus akin to the Tingle Tuner in Wind Waker. Steve likes the idea of multiplayer Zelda which Nintendo hasn't focused on since Four Swords.

Other talk around the Vitality Sensor focused on the Nintendo conference itself.  Nate thinks the demo will go awry due to whoever demonstrating it having a high heart rate from being on stage, and Paul E. thinks whatever they present will be jaw-dropping, but no other developers will have anything to show.

We tossed around the idea of Wii 2 being shown, but only briefly and probably no dates or games mentioned, let alone shown.  Ian and Grant think a Fall 2011 launch is likely if anything is even spoken of.  A lot of us just called it the Wii HD, assuming it might just be another upgrade like the GameCube to Wii was.

For some final thoughts on Nintendo, Ian thinks we'll see a slew of Wii titles including Fire Emblem, Ogre Battle, and Kirby, Grants predicts Nintendo will show a lot of Pokemon Black and White and Wii Party.  Nate agrees on Wii Party and thinks it will be a goldmine for awkward animated gifs.  Nate's final set of games also includes Metroid Other M, Sin and Punishment 2, Golden Sun 3, Pikmin 3, Dragon Quest IX, and whatever Retro and Sora studios are working on.


Xbox 360 Console NatalWe're kind of torn whether Natal will be renamed, but we're all rather unconfident about the product in general.  Steve thinks it will be called Microsoft Motion and will cost $100, but Greg and Ian agree that Natal will stick around and also be priced at $100.  Grant is leaning towards a pricier $150 stand alone unit released on November 9th but $300 bundled with the Xbox 360 Arcade.  He also thinks it will be renamed Avatar, but James Cameron might lead a Na'vi attack on Microsoft Headquarters if that happens.  Paul E. is splitting his vote, saying they'll stick with Natal and go $150, but Microsoft will spend almost their entire presentation pumping up the Natal hype.  Nate likes the name View and the $100 price point and that they'll have an awkward demo of a semi-hardcore game on-stage.  He's also expecting Peter Molyneux will do another creepy Milo demo again.  Finally, Mike in Omaha is undecided by the name, but think they'll stick with something simple like Jump or Go and cost $129.  We all pretty much agreed it would be released around November.

Nate also thinks the already announced Halo: Reach, Gears of War 3, and Fable 3 will be the highlights of their show, but a big announcement from Rare could be coming such as Perfect Dark or Killer Instinct.  There will also be a lot of focus on 360/Live and Windows Phone 7 integration that no one will care about, but people will like the $50 price drop on all Xbox 360 models.

Grant agrees that a new Perfect Dark is coming, but he thinks most of the presentation will be spent on Natal and Fable 3.


Last Guardian GryphonWith the Move on the near horizon, most of our discussion landed on its price and launch date.  Nate saw a September release of $40 for the wand, $30 for the camera, and $60 bundled.  On the other hand, Paul E. expects the Move to be priced at $100.  $50, $60, and $70 were also mentioned, with most of us thinking it would at least be released before Natal (for the record, Grant likes October 19th).

As for Move games, Greg thought Sony would add Move support to already released games (similar to what they're doing to 3D now) such as Uncharted 2 and Little Big Planet (though Nate thinks they'll save it for Little Big Planet 2).  Ian predicts they would focus on Wii Sports-like games whereas Paul E. is leaning towards a focus on the hardcore gamer; Mike's prediction of lots of Resistance 3 and Killzone 3 talk might end up being related to the Move!

Grant believes their big announcement will be inFAMOUS 2, and Nate predicts Sony will actually focus mostly on the struggling PSP.  With Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker just released and a new God of War PSP game to show off, they will have plenty of games to fill the time.  He thinks their video lineup will include Resistance 3, inFAMOUS 2, SOCOM 4, Motorstorm 3, Gran Turismo 5, and The Last Guardian, with a special 3D presentation of Killzone 3 with 3D glasses available under the seats.  Grant also expects a lot of time spent on The Last Guardian and that Demon's Souls 2 will be a big surprise for everyone (except you readers of course!).


Steve, always a believer in the great Segata Sanshiro, would love to see Sega announce a new console that would be 100% DLC of all their past console titles along with past and current Sega arcade games.  Hey, we can wish, right?

I also promised Grant that if Shenmue 3 was announced I would buy it for whoever got the most predictions right.  Here's hoping I get to spend some money!

Speaking of more realistic Sega-related predictions, Ian would love to see a new entry in the Shining Force series and Grant thinks they might try another Panzer Dragoon or Jet Set Radio game, and of course, more and more Sonic.


Portal 2 Aperture ScienceWith the Portal 2 cake party canceled, Grant and Greg believe that Half-Life 2: Episode 3 will be shown instead.  Steve and Nate predict we'll actually see Half-Life 3 though, which would be an incredible surprise.  If Half-Life 3 isn't there though, Nate is pointing to Source Engine 2 or a new Valve RTS game as likely candidates.  On the other hand, Ian thinks that Left 4 Dead 3 is an obvious announcement.

Square Enix

Final Fantasy XIII was just released and we already know about Final Fantasy XIV, so he's thinking Square will either announce Dragon Quest X or Kingdom Hearts III.  Nate agrees that DQX is likely and will land on a Nintendo system, but that we'll see a setup game for Kingdom Hearts III on the 3DS and that gameplay footage of Final Fantasy Versus XIII will finally be shown.

Greg and Grant predict a Final Fantasy VII Remake will happen eventually, so why not this year?


We weren't even sure if Blizzard was going to attend this year's E3 with Blizzcon 2010 in a few months, but if they did show up, they'd show a lot of Starcraft II, World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, and Diablo III, but no solid date for Diablo.  And then Grant reminded us of Blizzard's persistant rumor of another MMO in the making, you never know.

More Games

Greg would love to see Grand Theft Auto Tokyo announced as that's been his dream GTA game since Vice City was released.  Something has to be cooking at Rockstar besides Agent.

Nate, being the ultimate Mega Man fan wants to see what Capcom has in store with the recently trademarked Mega Man Universe.  He hopes it's "an awesome online multiplayer and co-op NES-style Mega Man super adventure," but thinks it will most likely be a disappointing card game MMO.

Steve thinks a Mirror's Edge 2 from EA is inevitable, hope his prediction is right!

Elder Scrolls

Paul A. has a special prediction for fans of the Elder Scrolls series:

Internet rumor has it that Bethesda is planning a “secret” E3 announcement, and I’m guessing that it isn’t about the long-awaited sequel to Pirates of the Caribbean: The Legend of Jack Sparrow. No, what’s more likely is that it has something to do with their Elder Scrolls series, and this is where it gets a little complicated. See, back in August 2009, Bethesda game director Todd Howard was quoted (or maybe misquoted) as saying that they had “no current plans” to make another Elder Scrolls game. Cue sounds of a million RPG-based hearts breaking. Then, out of nowhere, there came a book. It had words in it and a pretty cover, but I didn’t read it as I could barely read through a few pages of the in-game tomes within Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. But this book, The Infernal City by Greg Keyes, purported to fill in a gap of 200 years for the next game set after the Oblivion crisis. Hmm. One wonders, one wonders…

But yeah, my prediction is actually not whether we will hear anything about an Elder Scrolls game or not; we will. It’s their golden baby, and the best thing to do with golden babies is let them shine. The Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 have come quite a long way since the days of Oblivion, and a new game with the same scope and appeal, but better graphics and functionality can only do well. That’s just logic. What still needs to be determined is if it’ll remain a single-player RPG all about immersing one’s self in the game world or if we’re going to be getting yet-another MMORPG that loses everything that makes it special the minute “gold farming” is mentioned.