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We have your E3 2012 rumors right here

Hey, everyone. Everyone. Hey. Did you know that the Electronic Entertainment Expo trade show is next week? It’s kind of a big deal. We’ve written an article or two about it.

Just like every year, the week before E3 is when the Internet explodes with wish lists of what everyone wants to see at the show. It can get a little cluttered, but the good news is that we’ve compiled a list of some of the biggest rumors for your convenience, along with their level of truthiness as of this writing (on an arbitrary scale of zero to three).


New Xbox and/or PlayStation hardware

Truthiness level: 0 out of 3

Both Microsoft and Sony have explicitly denied that they will be showing off any new hardware this year. It could be because we’ll already be hearing a lot about Nintendo’s Wii U, or it could simply be that they have nothing to show off yet. We know that the next PlayStation will use discs instead of going full-on digital distribution, and we’ve heard reports that the next Xbox might use a Wii U-style tablet controller, but don’t expect to hear any of those things from the console makers themselves next week.


A revamp for Sony’s PlayStation Plus program

Truthiness level: 2 out of 3

Sony’s premium subscription offering has had trouble convincing gamers of its value, especially considering that, unlike Microsoft’s Xbox Live Gold service, people can play games online whether they are members or not. Current rumors suggest that the company will announce an overhaul to Plus during its press conference on Monday; new features will include full Vita support (including cloud data management) and free “top tier” games.


the new updated wii u tablet controllerA $350-$450 price tag for the Wii U

Truthiness level: 1 out of 3

Nintendo has already said it won’t be announcing the price of the Wii U at E3, but some possible leaked specifications for the new system suggest something similar to what the Xbox 360 cost when it launched seven years ago. If those specs line up with what Nintendo actually announces at the show, however, it may lend this rumored price point some credibility.


Price drops

Truthiness level: varies

Nintendo Wii: Nintendo will drop the price of its on-the-outs Wii console to $99, according to an anonymous tip reported at Nintendo Connect last week. The report cites a stealth picture of a price-drop list at a Kmart, but the reduction would make sense considering the company’s transition to the newer Wii U.

Xbox 360: Target’s website contained a listing for a 250-GB Xbox 360 bundled with a Kinect motion controller for $299.99 (rather than $399.99), according to a post in the forums at Cheap Ass Gamer. The item was “mispriced,” Target told Engadget. That doesn’t necessarily rule out all chances of an announcement at E3, but we’ll have to wait to hear it from Microsoft itself.

PlayStation 3: This is a “likely outcome” of poor sales, according to Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter. That doesn’t necessarily mean it will happen, but if it’s going to, E3 wouldn’t be the worst time for an announcement.

PlayStation Vita: OK, this one is more speculation than anything, but an announcement yesterday that Sony is temporarily cutting the price of its handheld by €50 in France (roughly $61.90) from June 1 to July 15 (via rebates) suggests that the company is at least open to the possibility. Never mind the fact that people have been predicting a reduction for a while.


Dead Space 3 revealed

Truthiness level: 2 out of 3

We already know that publisher Electronic Arts is planning to release a new chapter in the Dead Space franchise in its next fiscal year, so it wouldn’t be at all surprising for the new game to make an appearance at E3, as some bloggers have surmised. A newly released video (below) confirms the rumors of an ice planet and a new protagonist, and the Dead Space website includes a coded countdown clock that expires next Tuesday, smack in the middle of E3.


Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 announced

Truthiness level: 3 out of 3

So far, developer Mercury Steam’s sequel to its surprisingly good addition to the Castlevania series is this E3’s worst-kept secret. Fans investigated the source code of publisher Konami’s mysterious countdown site and discovered references to the unannounced sequel. That countdown expires today, by the way, so this rumor might not even last until the show.


Splinter Cell: Blacklist announcement

Truthiness level: 2 out of 3

It’s been two years since Conviction, super-spy Sam Fisher’s last adventure, so developer Ubisoft is probably about due to reveal the next game in the franchise. This rumor comes primarily from a post on NeoGAF, which begins, “I’ve seen the promo and Sam is looking good as always with no grey hair [ . . . ], full body suit, and his mighty night goggles, including a serious look on his face.” A second source, Twitter user Chad Trotter, also claims to know about the new game, adding that a Ubisoft representative “let it slip on accident.”


Massive Kingdom Hearts HD collection announced

Truthiness level: 1 out of 3

High-definition collections are all the rage these days, and Kingdom Hearts might be the next series to get the compilation treatment, according to a report from Dual Pixels. The set would include the first five games in developer Square Enix’s Disney-crossover role-playing franchise and be available for PlayStation 3, Vita, and the Wii U.


Grand Theft Auto V fall release date announced

Truthiness level: 2 out of 3

GTA developer Rockstar Games won’t be at E3, but publisher Take-Two will. We’ve been waiting to hear more about the latest game in the blockbuster crime series (it was even rumored for last year’s E3), and with studios pushing the releases of big games like BioShock Infinite and Aliens: Colonial Marines into next year, this fall is looking pretty open. Lending more weight to this possibility (or not, depending on how you feel about the guy): Michael Pachter has predicted that it will happen.


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