E3 2013: Predictions and prognostications

CNET editors offer various and sundry opinions on what to expect at this year's E3 gaming show.

The stage at Microsoft's E3 2012 press conference. James Martin/CNET

E3, the big video game trade show, kicks off on Monday. And 2013 looks to be one of the biggest years ever.

The games industry is at a crossroads, with "hard-core gaming" under onslaught from 99-cent casual iPad and smartphone games. Two new consoles are on deck -- the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 -- and the third, the Nintendo Wii U, is fighting for its life. And the software publishers like Activision, EA, and Ubisoft will be fighting to outsplash each other with the latest and greatest sequels and franchise titles.

So what's going to happen?

CNET's live coverage of Microsoft's Xbox One E3 conference

CNET's live coverage of Sony's Playstation 4 E3 event on Monday

We put that question to our resident panel of experts, and they each offered six possible scenarios.

These predictions are from the trio of CNETers who will be covering E3 on the ground in Los Angeles -- Roger Cheng, Jeff Bakalar, and Eric Franklin -- as well as grizzled E3 veterans Dan Ackerman and Scott Stein (who will be missing it this year so they can attend Monday's other big tech event, the Apple WWDC keynote).

We've divided the predictions into three categories: sure things (all but definite); fairly likely (more probable than not); and wishful thinking ("flying leap" predictions -- stuff we'd like, but don't actually expect).

So, without further ado: read on for what we expect at E3 2013.

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