Update: Check out this article to find out who guessed correctly and who was way off base. -Brett
If there's one thing that gamers love more than, you know, video games, it's predicting what new games will be unveiled at the various conventions throughout the year. Since most of the Bitmob staff will be at E3 next week, I thought I'd engage them in a little soothsaying. I asked them what they thought would be the biggest surprise coming out of the show. You'll find their answers below.
The kicker? After E3 has closed its doors, I'll revisit this story to see just how right (or how very wrong) their predictions were.
Those of you who fancy yourselves expert prognosticators can join in the fun as well. Add your own "surprise" prediction in the comments, and I'll include some of them in the follow-up post. So dig out your Magic 8-Balls and start guessing!
Dan "Shoe" Hsu, Co-Founder
Prediction: I’m sure I’ll be way off on this, but hey…I’ll look brilliant if this comes true: a new, slimmed-down, more modern Xbox 360 console.
Demian Linn, Co-Founder
Prediction: Bungie will debut its multiplatform game at the Sony press conference.
Jason Wilson, Managing Editor
Prediction: Good Old Games will announce the acquisition of the Strategic Simulations, Inc., Dungeons & Dragons catalog — aka the "Gold Box games." The first planned for release is Pool of Radiance. And Jason will leave E3 with mixed feelings, as while he endorses the return of the Gold Box games, he laments that no new RPG will be announced that features a six-character party system.
Aaron Thomas, Editor
Prediction: Browser-based Zelda MMO. If this doesn't come true, I'll eat my hat live on the Mobcast. [Ed. note: Aaron is currently on vacation, so I volunteered a guess for him. -Brett]
Brett Bates, Editor
Prediction: Insomniac will debut their new series at the Microsoft press conference.
James DeRosa, Editor
Prediction: I'm not sure how far out there this is, but my bet is that Square will confirm a Xbox 360 release for Final Fantasy 14. Last year, they went on record and said they were "considering all options at this time," and I think expanding the potential user base for any MMO is the savviest move you can make.
Rob Savillo, Editor
Prediction: I'll put my money on a Portal Wii port. Newell already stated that Valve's E3 surprise will be Portal themed, and he's previously mentioned that Nintendo's system "represents big opportunities" and is a "hole" in Valve's strategy.
Jay Henningsen, Editor
Prediction: Fresh on the heels of the iPad, Microsoft will finally reveal its long-rumored handheld entertainment device.
Andrew Hiscock, Community Manager
Prediction: The Arcade 360 unit is abandoned and all future Xbox will have hard drives, with each SKU moving down one price point; Natal Enabled Viva Piñata (which I would play the fuck out of); and a Wii-side Pokemon add-on for Black and White that will not only allow for online play, but very basic MMO elements.
Alejandro Quan-Madrid, Writer
Prediction: Nintendo shows off a new big-budget, non-game franchise and a new Kid Icarus game for Wii. Oh, and Sega shows off a retooled version of their previously announced portable media player device…or they announce their re-entry into the console market with Sega Saturn 2 — which goes on sale during E3, taking everyone, including retailers, by surprise.
Jasmine Rea, Writer
Prediction: Square announces a re-imagining of Final Fantasy 7, making it darker, edgier, and voiced entirely by former and current Disney stars. Although to be fair, Lance Bass was pretty good as Sephiroth in Kingdom Hearts…
Omar Yusuf, Writer
Prediction: I don't have any evidence to back this up, but my gut tells me that Peter Molyneux's "Milo" might turn out to be a bloody, action-packed, third-person shooter. Think Gears of War, only with an innocent, freckled English kid. Oh, and if Valve knows what's good for them, they'll announce some Half-Life-related news. *Shakes fist*
Mike Minotti, Writer
Prediction: The new Legend of Zelda game will use the Wii Vitality Sensor, and it will be called The Legend of Zelda: The Pulse of Eternity.
Omri Petitte, Writer
Prediction: I'm holding out for Eidos to change its mind and provide some tantalizing info on Thief 4, but that's probably wishful thinking at best.