What should have been a smooth and easy ride into E3 2011 has turned out to be a disaster for Sony. With the launch of one of the biggest titles of the year, Portal 2, Sony found themselves in the awkward position of having their network compromised. This kept gamers off of PSN and Sony Online Entertainment servers for well over a month. The outage not only put a strain on PlayStation 3 customers–but Publishers had to deal with rescheduling planning DLC and the loss of revenue from the outage. Fortunately, the services have been brought up and Sony has offered packages to begin mending these fences with consumers. The question remains on the impact with their Third Party partners. As Sony enters into the week of E3 2011, we expect them to address this issue for the last time, reiterate their apology and security changes they have made, and never broach this subject again. Once they have concluded with the negative, Sony should roll out the latest information and details on the NGP. We believe the rumors of naming it PlayStation Vita could very well turn out to be true. Regardless of this, we do expect a final name, pricing details, and launch dates for Japan, North America, and European regions. We fully expect to see the new handheld priced at below $300.00, release in Japan by Winter 2011, North America by Spring of 2012, and Europe by Summer 2013. Sony will then lay out their plans on the software for the NGP by rolling out several Third Parties. Most notably, we will hear about a new Metal Gear title for NGP and scheduled for release by Holiday 2012. Sony will formally announce around a dozen NGP First Party titles that will appear in the “launch window” for the platform. With the failure of the Nintendo 3DS to catch on with consumers, with a definite lack of quality software fueling the lack of sales, we expect Sony to learn from this and ensure NGP will have quality software alongside the launch of the platform in both North America and Europe. Sony should also reveal plans to pack in a game with the NGP. We expect that title could be Wipeout Pure. Moving from NGP to PlayStation 3, we expect to hear a few surprises. With the vast number of titles already revealed for 2011, these will probably be titles scheduled for release by Winter 2012. These will include: Grand Theft Auto V, Sly 4, God of War 4, and The Last Guardian. Other titles making an appearance will be Agent, Final Fantasy Versus XIII, and a new title by Guerrilla Games will be seen as the “big reveal.” But wait, before all is said and done, We will see Metal Gear Solid 5. We also expect Sony to show off a new system firmware, for PS3, completing redefining the experience on the console. This will also lead into further features and more value to PlayStation Plus subscribers–including the ability to play PSP digital titles on the PlayStation 3. PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Move will both receive price reductions effective this month. PlayStation Move will be talked about in a positive light but nothing will stand out on the platform to entire core gamers to use the device. The star of the show will be the final PS3 reveal and the NGP launch details. These two announcements alone will be enough to overshadow what Microsoft announces at E3. This wraps up our pre-Press Conference thoughts for Sony. Keep reading for what actually happens at the event and see how close we get!

By Kaleb Rutherford – 06/06/11

Screenshots for Pre-E3 2011 Sony