Nintendo Wii 2 will rock E3: reports
Nintendo Wii 2 will be the biggest news coming out of E3, according to reports. But with titles like Halo 4, Modern Warfare 3, and Mass Effect 3, can the new system (which most likely will not be called the Nintendo Wii 2) hold on to headlines for long?
Almost six years ago at the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo, Nintendo unveiled what would eventually become known as the Wii. But the Japanese gaming giant didn't show off the new console's distinctive motion-sensing capabilities until later that year at the Tokyo Game Show. Nintendo won't be such a tease at this year's E3.Skip to next paragraph
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After two years of shrinking Wii sales, the gamemaker will fully raise the curtain on the Wii's successor at the gaming industry's annual convention in downtown Los Angeles this week. Nintendo Co. has remained silent about just what the doodad will do, but gamers are anticipating features like high-definition graphics and touchscreen controllers.
"What's interesting about it is that it's a platform that seems much more oriented to the core gamer, in terms of its capabilities and specifications," said Ken Levine, the Irrational Games creative director who will tear into E3 with "Bioshock Infinite," an airy in-the-clouds follow-up to the stylish undersea saga "Bioshock," published by 2K Games.
Meanwhile, Sony Corp. will try to rebound from the embarrassment of a massive security breach that recently crippled the PlayStation Network, affecting more than 100 million online accounts. Sony plans to introduce several new PlayStation 3 titles, as well as detail the name, price and sale date of a new hand-held device code-named Next Generation Portable.
John Koller, director of PlayStation hardware marketing, said the NGP will be slightly larger than the PlayStation Portable and will feature a touchscreen, touchpad, two cameras and an accelerometer, meaning it can react to motion. It will also be able to connect over cellphone networks and Wi-Fi hotspots and use GPS location-tracking technology.
"The NGP is not a singular experience as a lot of other portable and mobile devices are," said Koller. "There's augmented reality, location-based and social gaming experiences. All those things add up to a much greater whole than what we think is available on the market or will be on the market over the next four to five years."
Following last year's flashy Cirque du Soleil production to introduce Kinect, the motion-sensing camera system for Xbox 360, Microsoft Corp. will likely take a different tactic than Nintendo and Sony and keep the focus on new games instead of new devices. The gaming industry's current champion hasn't announced any plans to debut a new console.
The most explosive battle for hype will involve Electronic Arts vs. Activision, who will simultaneously use E3 as a theater for their military shoot-'em-up franchises. Activision Blizzard Inc. aims to continue to dominate with the globe-trotting "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3," while Electronic Arts Inc. hopes to capture interest with "Battlefield 3."