Every year around this time, gamers gather online and make wild predictions about what will be announced at E3. In years past it was a much harder guessing game, but internet detectives and leaks mean a lot of surprises get confirmed ahead of time. We all saw that grainy photo of an Assassin’s Creed: Origins pre-order card, right?
Still, there’s a lot we don’t know. So before the big news of the show gets confirmed let’s all grab a knife, switch off the lights, and start making crazy stabs in the dark about what will be revealed at E3 2017.
Microsoft’s Project Scorpio will cost $499
One of the biggest questions to be answered at E3 2017 is how much will the new Xbox cost? Announced at E3 2016, Project Scorpio is the new Xbox (which will most likely be renamed before launch) and is not a successor to the current Xbox One. Instead it’s an upgraded version to be sold alongside it. Microsoft has stated that all games for the Scorpio must also be compatible with the Xbox One, and vice versa, similar to the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 4 Pro setup.
Based on specs alone, the Scorpio easily beats the PlayStation 4 Pro in terms of raw power. But that jump in performance is likely going to come with a price tag to match. Right now the PlayStation 4 Pro retails for around $399, and though we can hope Microsoft will be able to match that price it doesn’t seem doable given the cost of the components.
What will most likely happen is the Scorpio will be positioned as the premium system and the Xbox One S as the entry-level unit. In short, expect the Scorpio to cost $499 when it launches in late 2017.
Possibility: 80% – It’ll be $499. 20% – It’ll be $399.
Project Scorpio will support the Oculus Rift
Microsoft has been dabbling in augmented reality for a while now with the HoloLens, but they’ve also been dipping their toes into the virtual reality pool on the side. Now, with the Scorpio on the horizon, the time is right for Microsoft to pull on a headset and jump right in.
The most logical partner for Microsoft is Oculus as they’ve already established a relationship with John Carmack, CTO of Oculus VR Inc. He appeared onstage to talk about Minecraft for the Samsung Gear VR during the Xbox Showcase at E3 2016, which led to speculation about Carmack possibly working with Microsoft on something else behind the scenes.
Add to this the Oculus Rift having official Xbox One streaming support (via a complicated setup with a PC), plus the headset coming bundled with an Xbox One controller, and you start to see the pieces coming together. My prediction is the Xbox Scorpio (or whatever they call it) will support the current Oculus Rift and may even come in a bundle with the console.
Possibility: 50% – I think it’s a good idea, but this is more of an educated guess.
Wolfenstein: The New Colossus
During the Bethesda press conference in 2016, a fake MS-DOS screen was briefly projected on stage listing a number of game franchises owned by Bethesda. Included in the list were Doom, Commander Keen, and a few Wolfenstein games, including The New Order, The Old Blood, and an unannounced new title – The New Colossus.
MachineGames did a fantastic job reviving Wolfenstein with The New Order and The Old Blood, so the idea that they’d be working on a new entry is a bit of a no-brainer. Plus, Bethesda doesn’t have a lot to announce this year (face it, Elder Scrolls VI is a long way off), so The New Colossus could end up being their ‘it’ game this year.
Possibility: 100% – if this doesn’t happen I’ll eat my iPhone.
Sega Forever subscription service will be announced
Sega of Japan recently released an internal video designed to give those inside the company a sense of where the brand is headed over the next few years. The company has also publicly stated a renewed focus on restoring the things people loved about Sega through better utilization of their back catalog.
Seemingly tied in with this rebranding is the mysterious Sega Forever, which was revealed via the registering of an official Twitter account, Facebook page, and some placeholder text in a Sega iOS game. While we don’t know what Sega Forever is yet, speculation about it being a paid subscription service has been rife online.
If Sega really is serious about leveraging their old games, a paid subscription service makes a lot of sense. Plus, they’ve already done a lot of remastering of their 16-bit titles for iOS and the Nintendo 3DS, so the groundwork is already there somewhat.
Personally, I’d happily pay for a classic gaming service with a big library and cloud saves. If they include Sega Saturn or Dreamcast games… I mean I’ll give them whatever they want. A kidney? A lung? My soul? Take it!
Possibility: 50% – Gut feeling says it’ll be on the Switch. Maybe PlayStation 4.
Big budget games for PlayStation VR
Despite selling over a million units in less than a year, the PlayStation VR has lost some of its momentum thanks to its lack of big games. It’s an expensive piece of tech for a niche audience, but speaking for myself I’m glad I own PlayStation VR, if only for Rez Infinite.
No matter what you think about the PlayStation VR, one thing is certain – we need more games, Sony! E3 2017 is the time to pull out the big guns and show the world that PlayStation VR isn’t a gimmick. Resident Evil 7 went a long way to legitimize the expensive headset, now it’s up to Sony to get their internal studios to do some of the heavy liftings.
The recent shooter title Farpoint is a step in the right direction, and it’s safe to assume Sony know they have kept the positive buzz going. It’s hard to say what games will come to PlayStation VR, maybe a new Killzone? But rest assured, a big chunk of the PlayStation press conference will be dedicated to selling the PlayStation VR to new buyers and winning over lapsed fans.
Possibility: 80% – Sony will have at least two or three big PlayStation VR game announcements.
A new Metroid Prime for the Nintendo Switch
It’s been too long since Metroid Prime 3: Echoes on the GameCube. Far, far too long. Retro Studios, creators of the Prime series, have been fairly quiet since their last game Donkey Kong: Tropical Freeze was released in 2014. A few rumblings online point to the studio working something big for the Nintendo Switch, and a new Metroid game is certainly in demand, so when you put the two together it’s a sure thing, right?
Metroid Prime 4, or whatever it’s called, feels logical for the Switch, which lacks a good shooter game right now. But, they could also be working on bringing back another Nintendo series. After the lukewarm response to Metroid Prime: Federation Force on the Nintendo 3DS, it’d be great to see the series make a big comeback and restored to its former glory.
Possibility: 70% – We’ll hear about a new Metroid game. 80% – We’ll see what Retro Studios have been up to.
More Wii U games coming to the Nintendo Switch
The Nintendo Switch shouldn’t become a dumping ground for upgraded Wii U games, not if Nintendo are serious about winning back their core fans. But given how well Mario Kart 8 Deluxe was received it’d be crazy of Nintendo to not re-release a few of the best Wii U games that deserve a re-release on a console people actually own.
The most obvious choice is Super Smash Bros. Wii U, which has new Amiibos coming later this year and would fit well into the Switch’s library of living room multiplayer games. Other games likely to make the jump the Switch include Pikmin 3 and Super Mario Maker, though those could either be announced later in the year. Either way, expect a few more Wii U games to come to the Switch before the year is done.