E3 2019 is coming up quickly. The long-running event is set to be a different show this year, as an increasing number of companies try new approaches. In maybe the most significant change, Sony won’t be attending the show, which means there’s no press conference devoted to PlayStation or new PS4 games (though Death Stranding is getting some visibility before E3 begins). Even so, there’s a lot to look forward to, as E3 is sure to still bring tons of game reveals and news.
But what’s actually going to happen? The rumor mill has already begun, and things have started to leak (even if we’ve yet to get something on par with last year’s Walmart Canada leak). Beyond that, publishers are largely keeping their lips sealed, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have some guesses. Below, you’ll find our predictions for what we think we’ll get to see, including some exciting game reveals and ports, along with the announcement of new hardware.
New From Software Game Revealed During Microsoft’s Press Conference
A Song of Ice and Fire author George R.R. Martin recently announced that he’s been consulting with a Japanese developer on an upcoming game for a while now. Rumors point to the developer in question being From Software, the studio known for Dark Souls, Bloodborne, and Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. A recent Gematsu report cites a source–someone described as “familiar” with what’s going on at From Software–who says the rumors are true and that the game will be announced at E3 2019 during Microsoft’s press conference.
Even if neither From Software nor Martin have stepped forward to confirm the rumors, I’m inclined to believe they’re true. From Software’s Soulsborne games are dark fantasies that regularly kill off important characters and weave together convoluted, but well-written narratives, much like Martin’s novels. It seems like a match made in heaven. Plus, From Software director Hidetaka Miyazaki has already confirmed the developer has two more games on the way.
According to Gematsu’s report, From Software’s new game will be open world, allow you to travel by horse, and features multiple kingdoms to explore. Killing the leaders of each kingdom allows you to unlock new, powerful abilities. You can read more about it in our E3 2019 rumor roundup. — Jordan Ramée
Halo TV Series First Trailer And Details
After many false starts, the small-screen adaptation of Halo finally appears to be gathering momentum. After losing its director last year, we’ve seen steadily seen more signs of life over the last several months. In February, Showtime announced that Black Mirror director Otto Bathurst would serve as director and executive producer. In March it reportedly added a second showrunner. And most recently, in April, the show announced its star: Pablo Schreiber as Master Chief.
With development speeding up, the time is right for 343 to start giving more concrete details–and where better to do that than a stage show packed with Halo fans, and hundreds of thousands more watching at home? It’s a golden opportunity we don’t think Microsoft will allow to pass it by. A teaser trailer followed by a premiere date, possibly with 343 head Bonnie Hunt or transmedia director Kiki Wolfkill peppering in some intriguing details, would hit the spot. — Steve Watts
Metroid Prime Trilogy Announced For Nintendo Switch
We may not yet know what Nintendo plans to showcase during its E3 2019 presentation, but one game we can safely say is still a long way off is Metroid Prime 4. Earlier this year, Nintendo made the shocking announcement that development on the game had effectively restarted, this time with original Metroid Prime developer Retro Studios at the helm, which means it’ll likely be some time before the title is ready to be shown off, let alone released. But while the new Metroid Prime game may still be a few years away, that doesn’t mean the series will be absent from E3 entirely, and what better way to ease the sting of Metroid Prime 4’s delay than by unveiling a Nintendo Switch version of Metroid Prime Trilogy.
Rumors that the collection is getting ported to the hybrid console have been cropping up consistently over the past few months. Shortly after the news of Metroid Prime 4’s delay, Game Informer editor Imran Khan claimed that a Switch port of Metroid Prime Trilogy was already complete, but Nintendo was sitting on it until the opportune moment. If that wasn’t enough, listings for the game have popped up at various retailers, most recently in Best Buy’s employee system last month. With Metroid Prime 4 still a way off, this would be a perfect opportunity to unveil Metroid Prime Trilogy for Switch. Not only would it tide Metroid fans over until there’s more news to share about Metroid Prime 4, but it would also introduce a new generation of players to one of the greatest trilogies in gaming. — Kevin Knezevic
Xbox Game Pass / xCloud Integration
Microsoft has made some bold moves with its Xbox Game Pass, most notably promising day-one releases for all first-party games and regularly securing day-one releases for indies on its platform. With the impending announcement of its xCloud streaming platform, it could make a big splash all over again, and in the process help define the future of gaming.
Google Stadia showed off some impressive-looking tech, but the lingering question was left: how will this be monetized? Microsoft xCloud, or whatever the company eventually calls it, will likely face similar questions. The company could get ahead of the speculation, and win over hearts and minds, by announcing integration between xCloud and Xbox Game Pass. A streaming platform naturally lends itself to an all-you-can-eat model a la Netflix, so consumers already understand the model. And with recent suggestions that Microsoft is eyeing other platforms for its streaming tech, this synergy would tee up Microsoft to be ubiquitous in video games, on all platforms. — Steve Watts
Cyberpunk 2077 Gets A Release Date
CD Project Red has already confirmed that Cyberpunk 2077 will be at E3 2019, even if the game won’t be playable during the event. The developer plans on showcasing new gameplay during the show, and releasing additional details about the upcoming RPG.
I think one of those details will be a launch date. It’s about time CD Projekt Red provides some sort of timetable for the game they’ve been teasing since 2013, even if it’s just confirmation for which year we can expect to see the game release. In August 2018, Cyberpunk 2077 producer Richard Borzymowski revealed the game is already playable from start to finish, so a release in 2019 or 2020 seems plausible. If the former, it makes even more sense that we’d get a release date during E3.
Of course, CD Projekt Red could easily decide to keep those details close to the chest for a little while longer. The developer is known for revealing new information slowly. If no release date gets announced, perhaps CD Projekt Red will at least take advantage of E3 to explain why it enlisted multiplayer-focused studio Digital Scapes. — Jordan Ramée
Rocksteady’s Next Game Revealed
Bucking the long-time stigma that licensed superhero games were doomed to fail, developerRocksteady Games made a name for themselves with the Batman Arkham series–which are arguably the greatest Batman games ever made. 2015’sBatman Arkham Knight was the concluding chapter to the series focusing on the Dark Knight’s struggles to maintain control of Gotham City from The Joker and other supervillains. With a rather definite ending, there didn’t seem much room to continue with just another sequel.
Aside from the release of Batman Arkham VR, we haven’t seen another Batman game since the release of Arkham Knight. WB Montreal, who produced the often overlooked Batman Arkham Origins, has also kept quiet. According to Rocksteady co-founder and creative director Sefton Hill, the developers have been at work on their next title since 2016. With E3 2019 approaching, now seems like an opportune time to finally reveal the developer’s next project. So far, the only specific info we have is that the next game will likely have an online component of some form, as the developers recently had open positions for multiplayer designers.
Following the Arkham series, there’s been a noticeable uptick in the quality of superhero games, and with Marvel’s Spider-man showing that other stellar games in the genre can exist too, it’s time for WB and Rocksteady to follow-up with their next project. Whether it’s a new Batman game, or something branching out into the broader DC comics universe, Rocksteady’s next big game will be something that many fans will want to see sooner rather than later. — Alessandro Fillari
Halo Infinite Release Date And New Details
It’s finally going to happen: Microsoft will announce Halo Infinite’s release date and talk more about the ambitious sci-fi shooter at its E3 2019 briefing. It’s been a long time coming. Halo 5: Guardians was released almost four years ago, so fans have been waiting a long time for news about the next mainline instalment in the classic series. At E3 2019, Microsoft will finally tell us when Halo Infinite is releasing and also what kind of game it actually is.
So far all we’ve seen is a mood piece for the game’s brand-new engine, Slipspace. That’s all well and good (the engine looks very impressive), but it is finally time for Microsoft to pull back the curtain and tell us just what the hell Halo Infinite is and when we can play it. The company has talked about letting fans play early through betas, and it could be a huge win for Microsoft to be able to say, “Play the beta later this year” or even early 2020. The Halo franchise has fallen out of prominence, and a big showing at E3 2019 could be just what the series needs. — Eddie Makuch
Mother 3 Releases On Nintendo Switch, Today!
It may be a pipedream, but Nintendo would be remiss to go another year at E3 without announcing the western release of Mother 3. E3 2019 would serve as a perfect venue for Nintendo to finally lift the veil over an official Mother 3 localization and release. And better yet: I believe it’ll release the game the very same day! It handled the series’ debut–titled Earthbound Beginnings–the very same way, after all–in addition to several other games throughout the years. My guess is that Mother 3 will be available shortly after the Direct showcase as an Eshop exclusive.
While such a reveal would spark massive excitement, I admit that it would be even greater if Nintendo one-upped our expectations by announcing at E3 that it’s committing to a full-on Mario & Luigi-style Mother 3 remake with new mechanics and remastered visuals. Given how badly fans have wanted the game, a remake would seem the proper way to bring Mother 3 to western audiences. Though, if this turns out to be the case, it would be great to have the GBA original included as a bonus somehow.
Nintendo has kept quiet about a potential Mother 3 western release in the past year, but it does know the desire for it. Former Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime has repeatedly mentioned this awareness. However, Game Informer editor Imran Khan claimed in an ResetEra post circulated that Nintendo’s effort to localize Mother 3 had allegedly ended due to characters and scenes deemed too controversial for the company.
It’s difficult to say what might become of Mother 3 in the west, but I’m crossing my fingers that it’s still on Nintendo’s radar. The company is known for its E3 surprises, so this year’s big show could be the one where we finally hear the Mother 3 announcement we’ve been waiting over a decade for now. — Matt Espineli
The Fable series is not as popular or front-of-mind as it used to be when Peter Molyneux was leading the RPG series. Not only is Molyneux long gone, but Microsoft closed developer Lionhead. But Fable is a very important franchise for Microsoft, and at E3 this year we will finally hear about Microsoft’s plans to bring it back–with a new studio. Microsoft’s newly acquired studio Playground, of Forza Horizon fame, recently moved to a massive new studio and announced plans to staff up big time for an unannounced AAA role-playing game.
That game is Fable 4, and we are excited to see the look and direction for the esteemed RPG series. With Microsoft also tipped to announce a next-generation Xbox (or two!) at E3, the company could wow Fable fans with an impressive demo for what the new Fable game will look like and the depth it will offer thanks to the power of the new machines. After the unfortunate closing of Lionhead and cancellation of Fable Legends, the Fable franchise could return stronger than ever. — Eddie Makuch
Ninja Theory’s New Game, Bleeding Edge, Gets Announced
The developers at Ninja Theory have kept quiet about their next project ever since last year’s announcement that Microsoft acquired the studio. During E3 2018, Xbox head Phil Spencer went into detail about Microsoft’s plans to focus more on first-party content with a new studio named The Initiative–and Ninja Theory was among many other developers set to produce a new exclusive game for the company. It also happens to mark the first time in 12 years that Ninja Theory will develop a new first-party exclusive game, with the first being the PS3’s Heavenly Sword.
With E3 2019 approaching, and Microsoft planning to pull out all the stops for their June 9 presentation, now is the best time for Ninja Theory to reveal their next big project. Recently, International Business Times reported that Ninja Theory filed a trademark for the name Bleeding Edge, which may be its next title. Aside from the name, not much is known about the game. But given the studio’s pedigree for blending action with strong storytelling, it seems like a given that next title will focus on that.
It’s been exciting to see Ninja Theory hone its craft and particular style over the years. The studio’s breakout hit Heavenly Sword showed a lot of promise, but it was clear the developers still had some growing to do in order get to where they needed to be. They would eventually hit those marks with games like DmC: Devil May Cry and Hellblade–both of which showed stellar craft for action-gameplay and storytelling respectively. Though we’ll likely never get the proposed DmC sequel that Capcom and NT had plans to work on, this new game could be the next best thing. I predict that Ninja Theory’s next big game will make an appearance at this year’s E3, and if it can match the quality of their last two games, then we’re in for something captivating. — Alessandro Fillari
Microsoft Will Announce Another Studio Acquisition
Over the years, Microsoft has been criticized for not having the same level of first-party developers as Sony and Nintendo. Halo, Gears, and Forza games are often great, but what else could Microsoft offer? Last year saw the company take some significant steps to address those complaints, announcing the acquisition of a variety of studios, including Obsidian Entertainment (of Fallout: New Vegas and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2 fame) and Ninja Theory (DMC: Devil May Cry, Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice).
They may not all be ready to show off what they’ve been working on for Microsoft, but I’m expecting to both get a look at some of those games and to hear that Microsoft has acquired another studio or two. While there were some big names among last year’s group, I could see Microsoft now going in the other direction and acquiring some quality small studios. Perhaps it could even target some of the developers to release their games at launch through Xbox Game Pass. — Chris Pereira
Ubisoft Reveals The Next Assassin’s Creed, And It’s Called Ragnarok
Sure, the leaked images and assets for Assassin’s Creed Ragnarok were confirmed to be fake. But that doesn’t mean that Ubisoft isn’t creating something similar with the next installment of Assassin’s Creed, reportedly (according to Kotaku) referred to as “Kingdom.”
All we know for sure is that Kingdom takes the Assassin’s Creed franchise to the Age of Vikings and is scheduled to release in 2020. If Ubisoft sticks to its traditional pattern, that means a teaser trailer and name drop during E3 this year, and Ragnarok could be a likely candidate for a name. Not only is the term tied to Viking culture (it’s the name of a cataclysmic event in Norse mythology), but the themes behind the word could apply to Kingdom’s story.
In Norse mythology, Ragnarok is the destruction of the gods, an end to the old conflicts, and the rebirth of the world with two remaining humans (Líf and Lífþrasir) leading humanity into a new age. Ubisoft’s past two Assassin’s Creed titles, Origins and Odyssey, dealt with the secret war between the Order of Ancients and the Hidden Ones. Assassin’s Creed Ragnarok could be a symbolic title, one that references how the game’s events ultimately destroy this old conflict, only to give rise to a new one between the two groups that define humanity going forward: the Templar Order and Assassin Brotherhood. The Age of Vikings does roughly last from 793 to 1066 AD, after all, ending just over a century before the events of the original Assassin’s Creed. — Jordan Ramée
Splatoon 2 Is Getting A 5.0 Update And Another Year Of Splatfests
The original Splatoon was a remarkable success considering it was a new, untested property that debuted toward the tail end of Nintendo’s poorest-performing home console. However, its Switch follow-up, Splatoon 2, transformed the burgeoning series into one of Nintendo’s most popular franchises. Since its launch back in 2017, the game has sold close to nine million copies worldwide and remains one of the preeminent reasons to subscribe to the Nintendo Switch Online service. Given the runaway success Splatoon 2 has had thus far, it would only make sense for Nintendo to announce another big update for the game at E3 2019.
Before Splatoon 2’s release, Nintendo said it would support the title with a full year of free post-launch updates, while its Splatfest competitions would be held monthly for two years. That two-year mark is approaching this July and Nintendo has not indicated that its plans have changed, which is why it would be such a great surprise to see the company announce that not only is a major 5.0 update on the way, but Splatfests will be extended for another full year. The Switch is still very much in the early years of its life, and Splatoon 2 has proven to be one of the console’s best-selling titles, so it wouldn’t make business sense to undercut its success by prematurely stopping support. Moreover, Nintendo is hosting another Splatoon 2 World Championships tournament ahead of its E3 presentation, which is indicative of how important the game is. That would be the perfect venue to announce that more Splatoon content is on the way. — Kevin Knezevic
Xbox Game Pass Announced For PC With Play Anywhere Support
Recent years have seen Microsoft’s gaming efforts increasingly focus on ubiquity–hence why we’ve seen something like Xbox Live support in the Nintendo Switch version of Cuphead. Predicting an expansion for Xbox Game Pass, Microsoft’s Netflix-style subscription service, isn’t exactly bold; CEO Satya Nadella said last year that Game Pass is coming to PC. But I think we’ll see not just the official announcement of this at E3, but also some other welcome news.
First, I expect that Game Pass on PC will be a built-in part of the existing Game Pass subscription; you won’t be expected to pay for a separate service, as is the case with EA Access and Origin Access. Whether you want to download and play something on your Xbox One or PC, you’ll be free to do so with that single subscription.
Further blurring the lines between those platforms, I think Game Pass will combine with Play Anywhere to let you seamlessly move back and forth between PC and console versions of a game. It could even tie into xCloud, as Steve predicted above, but I think Microsoft will use Game Pass to continue eliminating barriers we’ve dealt with for years. — Chris Pereira