What We Want To See At E3 2012

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Like Christmas, E3 seems to start earlier every year. Websites and magazine start talking about the show months before it is due to take place and run up lists and collate rumours. If you can’t beat them,  join them I say. And once you have joined them, then beat them by being the first E3 preview article on the net – hurray! Ok, not really the first article, but hopefully one of the best. Of course this being February, rumors are still thin on the ground for the biggest video games event of the year. The main focus of much of the early discussion seems to be around whether Sony and Microsoft will show off early versions of their consoles during their conferences, something that has been recently denied by both companies.

Publishers are yet to even hint at really any of the games they will be showing off, but the latter half of 2012 is still pretty bare as far as announced releases go, so we know there are some big guns waiting in the wings. Rather than feature a preview of the event then (something we will no doubt have up on the site as Summer draws nearer) we thought maybe a fantasy list of dream announcements would serve better to fire up the hype machine. Have a read of our list, then let us know what YOU hope to see from LA.

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A Stellar Launch Line-Up For Wii U

wii-u

An obvious one this is, but there is still plenty of room for Nintendo to disappoint. One would hope that the Wii U will at least top the performance abilities of both the PS3 and Xbox 360, and therefore be the most advanced console on the market for roughly a 12 month period but early indications haven’t been promising. One would hope that is enough time to embed itself into the daily lives of hardcore gamers, so the big N needs to hit the ground running with a quality mix of 1st party franchises, 3rd party ports and yes, even the odd casual title for the masses.

I’m not naïve enough to expect a Zelda HD game at launch, as much as it would impress consumers. Instead I would hope and expect some form of Mario platformer (possibly a digital download New Super Mario Bros?) and a couple of heavy hitters for the 1080p generation. My dream would be for both a Retro studios Metroid Prime game and perhaps either Pilotwings or F-Zero to be out for launch. Combine that with an Eternal Darkness sequel and at least a first look at a new Mario 3D platformer and Zelda HD and you could already start to call the Wii U a success.

Even with an impressive exclusive showing from Nintendo, 3rd party support is crucial, something the house of Mario is quickly learning. Games like Arkham City, Ninja Gaiden III and DiRT are all important, but so is snagging Call Of Duty and Battlefield. In my dream world, every major multi-platform release of late 2012 will see a Wii U conversion, with innovative touchpad support and upgraded graphics based for the PC version of a game where possible. Not too much to ask is it?

Impressive Phase 2 Vita Software

The Vita’s launch lineup is impressive certainly. Whether that is enough to sway gamers with ever shrinking budgets is another thing entirely. What the system needs is a second wind of games to arrive in the latter half of the year, to persuade any floating voters.

We know that there are some impressive Sony franchises on their way to Vita. We have seen Resistance: Burning Skies which looks like a solid effort, and Killzone Vita has been confirmed. To put the finishing touches to this line-up, surely a God of War game will be next title to be announced? If we are playing wish-list, then I would also love to have a Gran Turismo game be announced. And then not delayed for 5 years, obviously. Is another Uncharted game too much to hope for, even for next year?

Cross-play is also a big selling point for the handheld, and I would love to see even more games brought out to take advantage of it. Perhaps a bargain PSN store offer where every game that is released on both formats is sold together, or retail bundles packing together game cards and blu-rays. In 2013, I can imagine playing most of my games split between handheld and at home, with a cloud save system linking the two experiences.

Title Fight To Be A Reality

Apparently his special move is to morph into an Ice Cream Truck Mech. Wow.

We covered this heavy rumor a while ago when some reported leaks from the studio responsible got everyone in a tizzy. If you haven’t heard about it, Title Fight it is apparently a kind of ‘Smash Bros for PlayStation’ affair, collecting together some of Sony’s greatest mascots for the mother of all battles. Imagine Sweet Tooth from Twisted Metal taking on Nathan Drake and you get the idea.

Although this hasn’t been confirmed yet, it is pretty much a guarantee that it exists, I would expect it to play a major role in Sony’s conference. Make it more like a 3D Marvel VS Capcom and I would be sold, particularly if a Vita version was brought out at the same time.

Some Genuine Suprises

Of course it would look a LOT better on PS4 or Vita...

OK, so this is a tricky one to talk about, simply because I’m asking for something completely new. I just want to see something announced that is unpredictable, that gets everyone talking and excited for, that isn’t a sequel or franchise title. Something unexpected.

Just to throw some ideas into the air, what about news that the PlayStation 3 launch game that never was, Eight Days? The trailer looked awesome and still impresses now. Or what about The Getaway 3, set in a realistic London as the original trailer showed. Or Colony Wars or G-Police reborn for Vita? OK so I know those are all technically franchise games, but ones long forgotten which would still make for a sizeable impact.

Colony Wars as a MMO space battle game for PS4 launch maybe? Which brings us to….

A Glimpse Of The Next Generation

PlayStation 4 Fan-made Concept

And I do mean a glimpse. Sony and Microsoft would be very foolish to devote too much of their time and energy this summer in promoting consoles that wont see the light of day for another 18 months. I would expect Microsoft to continue to prioritize Kinect (if rumours are to be believed it will also play a strong role in their next console) and Sony of course have a new handheld to support.

However, I would also be amazed if each of them capitulated and handed Nintendo on a plate the ‘Wowee’ prize for technical excellence and buzz. Instead I would predict (and hope) that each would maybe dedicate a few minutes at the end of their conference to show a sneak preview of things to come. This may well be more advanced from the Microsoft camp where we may, possibly see the console itself. More likely however both of them will show off a target video that will be designed to blow your socks off, and then go quiet again until 2013.

Metroid On 3DS

Pretty please? It is now the only major Nintendo franchise not supported on their handheld and also perhaps ironically the best suited to the 3D aspect. Any kind of Metroid would work for me, be it a side scroller, combination type game like Metroid: Other M, or FPS. The controls for the original Gamecube Prime games worked very well just using one stick to move, so that wont be a problem on the 3DS and you just know it would look amazing running in 3D. Please make it happen Nintendo, and if it is playable alongside a new Wii U release I will love you forever. Promise.

Kingdom Hearts Collection

A personal plea this one, for my favorite game series. I have been putting off replaying KH 1 and 2 on my PS2 because I have been praying nightly for an HD collection with trophies, and I have a feeling E3 may just be the answer to my begging letters to the almighty. 2012 is the 10 year anniversary for the series, and with Kingdom Hearts 3 still years away, what better way than a compilation to celebrate Sora’s birthday? Dead Drop Distance is on the way for 3DS, but the series deserves another shot at console glory.

Kingdom Hearts 1 and 2 is a minimum requirement, but bundling in an HD version of the PSP game Birth by Sleep would be a lovely touch and give players who didn’t experience that game a chance to appreciate it. Come on SquareEnix, you know it makes sense. If we can have an HD remake for Splinter Cell, Metal Gear Solid, Jak and Daxter and Sly flipping Cooper, then why not Donald and Mickey?

Well that’s it folks, let us know what you would like to see at E3 2012, what are you hoping for?

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Mark Coupe

Mark Coupe

Writer at ZoKnowsGaming
I'm a UK based gamer, as well as being more obsessed with video games and Doctor Who that any adult has a right to be. I keep telling myself I will grow up one day, but certainly not if I can help it.
Mark Coupe