This E3 2013 prediction piece comes courtesy of Daniel Horowitz.
With E3 2013 right around the corner, rumors and speculation regarding the Xbox One, PS4 and all matters next-generation consoles have hit a fever pitch. As a result, the stakes of this E3 are quite a bit higher than they have been the past few years, and the stunts and spectacles pulled by Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo (who are eschewing a typical press conference for smaller, behind-closed-doors gatherings with journalists) will heavily impact their brand reputation among gamers for years to come.
As this E3 will likely make a big splash in the sales of next-generation consoles and games, here’s a prediction of five actions that the major game companies will hopefully take to best utilize the conference and satisfy fans.
1. Microsoft: Major Nelson Will Provide Major Damage Control
Microsoft’s Director of Programming Larry Hyrb has made it no secret that the company intends to invite journalists covering E3 to a media briefing before Microsoft’s E3 conference on June 10th at 12:30 pm. Here, Microsoft will attempt to regain some of the goodwill they lost with gamers by focusing on the more game focused aspects of the console. Rather than anger or alienate gamers by touting the Xbox One as an all-inclusive entertainment hub, Microsoft will assure the journalists that yes, the gamers matter too, and quite plainly, the Xbox One is a console meant to play games on. That or they’ll just lock all the journalists in a room for the conference, rending them unable to properly cover their further PR debacles. But for the sake of optimism, let’s just hope that Microsoft will do what all gamers want: show off some great games and let us know that they care enough to focus their efforts on our hearts and wallets.
2. Sony: All for One, One for All Gaming
While many questions remained unanswered about Sony’s PS4, one thing has been made clear by Sony CEO Kazuo “Kaz” Harai: consoles are here for games, and any other function that the console will have is secondary. Sony isn’t trying to outclass Microsoft’s Xbox One’s functionality, as from what we now know, the PS4’s specs can’t compete. If Sony is smart, they’ll redouble their efforts during their 9 pm conference on June 10th to appeal to the serious gamer, all while pushing their laundry list of exclusive features and titles on the PS4. Additionally, cross-product synergy with the Playstation Vita will likely be a key component of Sony’s E3 conference, as the handheld console recently experienced a massive sales spike after Sony lowered its price.
3. Nintendo: The No-Show
Nintendo has shown a severe lack of third party support since its console launch late last year, which can largely account for the disappointing sales figures of the Wii U. With a severe games void where Mario and Link should be, Nintendo is likely hoping to step up their presence by not having an official conference, instead opting to announce their products once their next-generation first party titles are good and ready to be shown. Instead, Nintendo plans to hold behind-closed-doors meetings with journalists, focusing specifically on upcoming software to complement the Wii U and 3DS. Finding the E3 conference format inefficient, the Nintendo President feels that targeting their information reveals at a more specific audience will have a great effect. We’ll see Nintendo, we’ll see…
4. Valve: Steam Box Won’t be Unboxed Yet
While Valve’s Gabe Newell is officially sitting E3 2013 out, expect more information on Valve’s alleged console killer in the months to come. Although the Steam Box likely won’t launch with Half-Life 3 upon release, the Steam Box is a simple concept to digest (a PC in your living room) with all the Steam sales to boot. The Steam Box likely won’t see a 2013 release, but as more information becomes available, enthusiasm will likely hit a fever pitch, offering a legitimate challenge from serious gamers to the likes of Sony and Microsoft. Still, we know that if Valve was further along in development, they might be a presence at E3.
5. Ouya: For the People, By the People
A bit of a dark horse candidate, Ouya is a Kickstarter wonder child, and is the first piece of technology to receive significant venture capital from the crowd funding service. Rather than exhibit at E3, Ouya will instead park themselves right in a parking lot outside the event, opening their booth to the public. Running on an Android operating system, the Ouya boasts over 10,000 registered developers, many who will be showcasing their games in the parking lot of the world’s most prominent video game conference. Although Ouya doesn’t have the capital to have a livestream in the style of Microsoft and Sony, this grassroots style of promotion will likely have great effect and elevate the console into a specific )but much-needed) niche in the gaming market.