E3 2008 – Day Zero – Pre-Emergence Hole

Tommorrow officially kicks off the festivities of the E3 Media and Business Summit but today we are getting the lowdown from Microsoft, Square-Enix, and Electronic Arts (EA) about the future of their respective companies through press conferences.

So let’s tell you what’s in store for today:

Microsoft Press Conference (10:30 AM PST)
Microsoft, one of the big three, is up first to demonstrate and fulfill the gamer’s expectations for widely anticipated announcements regarding their fall lineup as well as seeing what the future holds in store for the Xbox 360 itself.

Expect the spotlight to be upon their highly regarded sequel, Gears of War 2, as they demonstrate new features for the singleplayer and multiplayer campaign. Nevertheless, titles like Too Human, Viva Pinata 2, Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts, Halo Wars, and Fable 2 will be getting some time to shine as first-party Microsoft exclusives.

Also, we are going to also see Microsoft’s second attempt to attract the casual gaming audience by showing off titles that will appeal towards that category. Expect to see the debut of Lips, the heavily rumored Karaoke game, touted as a title in that segment.

As for surprise game announcements? Bungie has an announcement regarding one of their franchises, speculation resides on a new Marathon title as well as Peter Jackson’s Halo Chronicles, rumored to be a squad based shooter without Master Chief.

To wrap it up, Microsoft will be driving the Games for Windows platform once again as to appeal to the PC audience. Perhaps though have they armed themselves with the knowledge of digital distribution and the idea of a free community based Live infrastructure that could topple Steam?

We will see in a matter of hours, keep checking back for updates as the day progresses.

Square Enix Press Conference (1:00 PM PST)

A last minute addition, but a contender nonetheless. We are expecting Square-Enix to be subtle in their approach as this is not necessarily their biggest event of the year, the Tokyo Game Show is. So prepare for trailers, trailers, and more trailers of their lineup of games. That includes their new IP’s such as Infinite Undiscovery, Star Ocean 4: The Last Hope, and The Last Remnant. As well as returning titles such as the DS enhanced remake of Chrono Trigger.

The big anticipation for this press conference is IF we will see any trailer for the highly delayed but anticipated Final Fantasy XIII, and not just an extended trailer from the ones previous, but a NEW trailer to showcase the next-generation Final Fantasy. Also of course, the Kingdom Hearts series, we’re still waiting on a NA release date for Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days as well as information about Birth by Sleep.

EA Press Conference (3:00 PM PST)

Well, EA is the last press conference for today but considering the magnitude of this company and the developers it holds in its structure, we can only expect that we will see a whole cropload of titles coming out, targeting all types of genres and platforms.

Titles such as Lord of the Rings Conquest from Pandemic, Dragon Age from Bioware, Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 from EA Westwood, Spore from EA Maxis, Mirror’s Edge and Battlefield Heroes from DICE, and Crysis Warhead from Crytek are just a few of the titles that EA holds in its 2008-2009 lineup.

And the only thing that we are forgetting are the surprises, which there are plenty to be of.

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