E3 2011 Countdown: PC

Posted: June 4, 2011 in PC
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The PC is sort of the unclaimed luggage of E3 – many companies have titles for the PC, but since it’s more decentralized, this can’t be as cut-and-dry as one of the big three, since there’s no dominant hardware manufacturer. In this case, it falls to the software companies.

Now, not all of them are actually at E3; for example, Blizzard holds their own BlizzCon expo, but I feel I should include BlizzCon predictions here, as they’re one of the largest PC exclusive developers. So this may not be so much E3 as third and fourth quarter mass guessing on my part. Bear with me.

2K

While 2K will be concerned with the launch of Duke Nukem Forever this month, they should also be looking forward.  Some news and trailers of BioShock Infinite are likely coming as well.  2K has also pigheadedly refused to address any concerns about its upcoming XCOM, showing a trailer that does nothing to relieve the fears of X-Com fans.

Mid-Century Modern + G Men + Free Goo = NOT XCOM

Atari

Is it too much to ask for a trailer for Neverwinter? You know, the successor to the popular BioWare RPG Neverwinter Nights based on the popular SSI/AOL game Neverwinter Nights based on the popular D&D Forgotten Realms setting? Pretty please?

Speaking of which, the post-apocalyptic D&D spinoff Gamma World will have some game based on it coming in fall, if the back of the Daggerdale manual is to be believed. However, there are no details so far. The ball is in your court, Atari.

Well I for one am interested...

Bethesda

Skyrim. That’s the important one. Rage will probably be covered too but…come on, SKYRIM!

Blizzard

Blizzard, at present, has all three of their major franchises on the playing  field – World of Warcraft, so much as I can consider it part of the same series that began with Orcs and Humans back in the ’90s, is still going pretty strong. In spite of their growing competition in the free-to-play market and the looming threat of BioWare’s The Old Republic, Blizzard shows no real sign of speeding up and delivering additional content.

In addition, we may see something  from the next StarCraft 2 installment. Considering it’s just a continuation of the story from part one with the same engine and possibly a few minor tweaks, I doubt it will be that interesting.

Most importantly though (at least to me, as Diablo is the one franchise Blizzard hasn’t mis-stepped with yet), we get a solid release date for Diablo III. Although Blizzard famously only releases games when they’re done, there have been indications/rumors (divined from tea leaves as far as I know) that the game is nearing completion.

CD Projekt RED

They have already announced that the Witcher 2 will move from PC-exclusive to the Xbox 360, and it’s rumored they’ll be announcing a new IP as well. They have also announced a second patch which will address many reported problems and allows you to change Geralt’s hairstyle.

Electronic Arts

In addition to their new partnership with GoG.com, EA have announced a new digital distribution service called Origin (I wonder if it’s named for the EA-owned developer of Ultima and Wing Commander?), presumably out to compete with Steam (a joke? Haha, fat chance). It will be the sole distribution method for The Old Republic. Yes, LucasArts and Electronic Arts working together. Does anyone else hear the Imperial March?

We will also certainly have some further news on Battlefield 3 and Mass Effect 3.

LucasArts

 We can expect to hear some news and perhaps see a considerable amount of the Old Republic in action. I don’t expect much else since it doesn’t seem LucasArts develops so much as farms out to smaller devs and counts that Star Wars money. However, they’ve once again teamed with BioWare to produce The Old Republic, which builds on the critical and commercial success of the Knights of the Old Republic games and puts it into a massively multiplayer game. This may be the first MMO to be able to compete with World of Warcraft in some time, and we should expect to see some news of its production and release.

Square-Enix

Personally, I’m hoping for a playable Deus Ex: Human Revolution demo and some Tomb Raider gameplay footage. I don’t think that’s asking too much.

Valve

Valve are apparently going to be no-shows at E3. Whither Half Life 2 Episode 3?

If there’s anything you think I’ve missed, I’d like to hear it – I admit that my personal interests guided this and I’m certainly going to miss a few companies/games/everything. Discuss my fevered, baseless predictions below!

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