2012 was a fantastic year for gaming with some top quality titles being released and with a brand new console also hitting the market but I have a feeling that was just a pre-cursor to the biggest gaming year in 5 years to hit.
So what can we expect in 2013?
I am 99% convinced that a PlayStation 4 will be announced around E3 this year and that it will hit store shelves during the November silly season in the states. However with Sony’s financial troubles I don’t expect them to be able to handle a worldwide release and as such we will likely only see it in 2014 here in South Africa.
The PS4 will be backwards compatible and will ship with exactly the same hardware as Sony promises at their first press event.
Sony will break with tradition and make the PS4 a console that is easy to develop for. It will also break the small multiplayer stigma of consoles and regularly make working 64 player titles
With Sony releasing their next console this year you can expect Microsoft to do the same, we’ve already heard rumours of the new box codenamed Durango and as such expect to hear an official announcement around E3 as well. Microsoft has a war chest larger than most small countries and their previous staggered released hurt their brand outside of America so I expect a worldwide release for this one.
Microsoft is going to flex it’s marketing muscle again but proudly proclaiming that the new Xbox is the most powerful console ever made.They will continue to push their integrated service over Xbox, Windows and Phones.
The Dark Horse
Valve have already hinted at entering the pseudo console market with their own Steam box and it has been long expected that Apple would make a stronger driver to enter the lounge as well so who’s going to break first?
With the loss of Steve Jobs the shine has gone from Apple and investors are getting jittery so I would be surprised if they entered this low profit margin market this year. Valve on the other hand are worried about the cannibalistic effect consoles have on their main user base and may see this as a forced move. I think it would be suicide though.
I’m going to miss out some big ones here and be lynched for it but when I look forward through this year these are the titles that I’m most looking forward to
- Bioshock Infinite
- God of War: Ascension
- Modern Warfare 4
- Battlefield 4
- Grand Theft Auto 5
- Rainbow Six: Patriots
- Rayman Legends
- Beyond: Two Souls
- Watch Dogs
- Plants vs Zombies 2
- Saints Row 4
- StarWars 1313
- Tomb Raider
- Gears of War: Judgement
- The Last of Us
Microsoft and Activision will shock the world by announcing that Modern Warfare 4 was developed primarily on the new Xbox to showcase its amazing power and then ported over to all other platforms.
Sony will surprise at E3 by announcing that Beyond: Two Souls is now a PS4 launch title and that it won’t be available on the PS3.
Lucas Arts surprises everyone by announcing that StarWars 1313 will be available on all next gen consoles, including the Wii-U.
The Wii-U will start picking up hard core gamers when they realise the power of the second screen.
With the release of two new consoles the gaming industry will reverse its downward trend however smaller studios will continue to be swallowed up by Activision, EA, Sony, 2K and Microsoft.
The new consoles will bring a fresh wave of new IP and some old faces will make a strong return with West and Zampella releasing their brand new IP (which fails) and Cliff Bleszinski moving over to Ubisoft and releasing a less gory but just as popular new IP as Gears of War.
We’ll continue to grow and keep you entertained and you’re all going to win the lottery.
That’s it.. what do you think is going to happen this year?
I'm cranky, arrogant and ever so amazingly annoying but when you get to know me you will also realise I'm honest and incredibly good at describing myself... now pass me that beer