Hardware we're excited to see at E3
E3 2015 is just around the corner - so we've started preparing our wish list for both hardware and software.
By the time E3 rolls around players will be a year and a half into the new console generation, so publishers, developers and platform creators need to bring their A-game to LA.
Here's what we'd like to see - and believe us when we tell you, this is simply a starting point for an ever-growing list:
Console craze ... and PCs now too!
We don't expect to see very much in the way of hardware at the 2015 expo. Both Sony and Microsoft will have gaming platforms in the market that are under two years old and if Nintendo's past form is anything to go by, it's doubtful it's ready to throw in the towel on the Wii U just yet.
Nintendo's only just launched its new 3DS and 3DS XL and Sony continues to support the PS Vita platform, so new handhelds probably aren't on the agenda.
But the notion of a slimmer, more svelte Xbox One wouldn't be unappreciated. On the other hand, if the PS4 loses any more weight it may disappear under your television altogether. What's more likely is that both Microsoft and Sony will make attempts to better utilize their mobile device gaming platforms. A price cut for any of the home consoles wouldn't be completely unexpected either.
An area of hardware we do expect to see plenty of is virtual reality. The Oculus Rift is officially expected to touch down next year, though pricing is still up in the air. But now that we know when to we'll see a more finalized version, we expect it to be at the LA expo with guns blazing.
Microsoft teased the HoloLens at Build 2015 developer conference though we're sure all the juicy info will pop up in June. The HoloLens site even lists the following blurb: "Holographic computing promises whole new ways for us to create, collaborate, work, and play. We look forward to showing and telling you more at E3, the world's premier trade show for computer and video games and related products."
Sony's Project Morpheus still has some way to go, but Sony's made big leaps forward with the second generation of the headset, and we expect to see more games for it shown off at E3.
Finally, Valve used GDC 2015 to announce its new (and finalized) lineup of Steam Machines, which will launch later in the year. And if we're being incredibly optimistic for a moment? Half-Life 3, Portal 3 and Left 4 Dead 3 announced all at the same time. Imagine. Just imagine.
Speaking of imagining, year in and year out, our friends at PC Gamer would look on at the biggest gaming expo with wanting eyes. While Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony get to show off their wares with bombast, the excellent games and infinitely more powerful hardware on the PC received no such spotlight. But that's all about to change.
Presented by AMD and sponsored by Blizzard Entertainment, Bohemia Interactive, Tripwire Interactive and Digital Storm, the PC Gamer will play host to the first E3 conference all about PC gaming.
Hosted by StarCraft 2 e-sports commentator Sean 'Day9' Plott, the PC Gaming Show will be live streamed in partnership with Twitch from the Belasco Theater in Los Angeles on June 16.
Let's talk E3 games
It's hard to predict at this stage what developers and publishers will have in store for the E3 shop floor. But there are a ton of titles in 2015's pipeline we desperately want to see more of.
One publisher we're hoping will recapture some of its E3 glisten is Bethesda. The publisher's E3 2014 showing was tepid to say the least; showcasing The Evil Within and BattleCry failed to set the world alight. However, 2015 is set to be extra special - Bethesda has invited us to its first ever E3 press conference, which will take place this year. We'd be quite pleased with a sequel to Dishonored, or if there was any news about the undeniably intriguing Prey 2. But on the very top of our wish list is an announcement about Fallout 4. They've got to at least give us a tease, right?
Update: More rumors about Fallout 4 spilling out with the conference inching closer. IGN reports that behind the scenes gameplay sessions of the next Fallout game will be held in LA.
Other hopefuls include the Warner Bros Mad Max game, one of the belle's of the E3 2013 ball that we saw neither hide nor hair of it at E3 in 2014. We'd like to see a lot more of that now it's been given a September release date.
Elsewhere, it'll be interesting to see if Activision has more in store for the world than another Call Of Duty, another Skylanders or more bolt-on parts to Destiny. The normally reserved publisher introduced one of this year's biggest and best new IPs. We'd love to see them repeat that trick - even if the odds on it happening are slim.
Square Enix could do with some regrouping. Aside from Final Fantasy XV, which is receiving a mixed reception at best, and the upcoming sequel to the Tomb Raider reboot Square doesn't really have much beyond games with niche appeal. Why is this? This is the publisher that holds the rights to both the Hitman and Deus Ex franchises.
We've already had a good glimpse at Uncharted 4, and we expect the game to have a big presence at E3, although it has now been pushed back into 2016. It's shaping up to be one of the most "next gen" games yet - have you seen the detail in Drake's chest hair?
There are also rumours that United Front is working on a new Sleeping Dogs title and we'd love to see that. Oh, and Sony could 'fess up and tell us whether we'll ever see The Last Guardian in this lifetime.
As for Nintendo, it's bad news: we won't see Zelda Wii U at E3. In fact, Nintendo announced that it's pushed the game back beyond 2015. We're still expecting Star Fox Wii U this year, however, so hopefully that will be flaunting its stuff on the E3 show floor. Perhaps Nintendo might give us a glimpse of something else?
We don't want to start any rumors, but the recent release of the Metroid Prime trilogy on Wii U could be a sign that another franchise might eventually make a glorious return to the home console ...
Additional writing by Lily Prasuethsut