As rumors swirl about the prospect of imminent hardware refreshes, a major retailer claims to have word that big announcements are coming at E3 next month.
Every year, the build-up to E3 prompts all manner of rumors and speculation about the prospect of new hardware — but the amount of gossip floating around these past few months suggests that big reveals are really on their way. Now, a major US retailer seems to have confirmed that this is the case.
Speaking during a recent earnings call, representatives of the retail chain GameStop indicated that the company expects to see new console announcements at this year’s E3. However, no specifics were offered with regards to which companies are preparing a big reveal.
“We expect E3 to focus on key titles in the back half of the year and console announcements,” stated GameStop COO Tony Bartlet, according to a report from Gamespot. The executive also noted that virtual reality hardware and software is likely to garner interest at the expo.
It seems likely that Bartlet is referring to the rumored PS4K, a souped-up version of the current PlayStation 4 that will apparently be better prepared for the demands of PlayStation VR. Given the amount of chatter about this project in recent months, it seems more than likely that it’s real.
However, just this week we heard new information that suggests Microsoft might also have new hardware in the pipeline. The latest word is that a slimmer version of the Xbox One will be announced at E3, with a more powerful follow-up codenamed ‘Scorpio’ set for a reveal next year.
While the NX might seem like a likely candidate for a reveal next month, given that it’s rumored to launch sooner rather than later, Nintendo has already confirmed that the console isn’t its focus at this year’s expo. Instead, the Japanese giant will be largely concentrating on hyping its long-gestating Legend of Zelda game for the Wii U.
Sony and Microsoft both have hardware in development, but it remains to be seen which will make their big reveal at this year’s E3. Indeed, we might see a scenario where both companies make their plans for the future known in an attempt to one-up the other.
However, until E3 arrives, this is all simply speculation. At this time of year, rumors run rampant through the video game industry — so it’ll be interesting to see what turns out to be legitimate and fake in a couple of weeks’ time.
E3 2016 runs from June 14 to June 16.