The week of the Electronic Entertainment Expo – or E3, as everyone calls it – is the most exciting few days of the year for videogame fans. Taking place in Los Angeles between June 15 and June 17, with the pre-show curtain raisers of the major press conferences from Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo starting from tomorrow evening, it’s always a melting pot of intrigue, competition, tit-fot-tat one-upmanship, surprise reveals, and politics. Imagine the videogame version of an election campaign – that’s what will be tightly packed into this week.
The rumour mill always goes into overdrive before E3 starts, and it’s clear from the rumblings that we will see at least some combination of the following: a new Nintendo handheld called the 3DS, a slim version of the Xbox 360, Gran Turismo 5 on the Playstation 3 featuring a 3D mode (3D’s big this year!), the full unveiling of Microsoft’s controller-free Project Natal camera (or “Wave”, as it’s allegedly now called), Sony’s new Wii-on-acid “Move” controller, and much more besides. Major new games will be announced, others will surprise us by how great they are, and there tend to be a few surprises on the way. The biggest one being just how much poorer we’re all going to be by Christmas, due to all the good stuff coming out.
So what does this all mean for The Mirrorball? Well, sorry non-videogamers, but unless something major happens, the next few days’ worth of entries will pretty much all be about E3 (save for one very “special” entry. And I mean that very much in the “needs” sense of the word…). The first press conference before E3 proper begins is Microsoft’s tomorrow night, and I’ll be on hand with a hopefully much more fun analysis of what’s happened than the dry facts of your common or garden website. It’s going to be awesome. (The press conference, not the blog, obviously.)